Posted in Uncategorized

Six Ways for Widows to Celebrate Their Children’s Father

Father’s Day is Sunday, June 17. Did you know? Of course you did. There are advertisements everywhere, newspapers, magazines, television, the internet, stores have signs everywhere suggesting items as the perfect Father’s Day gift.

What do you do if you’re a widow, your children’s father is no longer with you? What do you do to celebrate him and the day? How do you and your children observe the day?

There is no one “right” answer, every widow, every child does what is right for them. If you’re floundering, here are six ideas for you.

1. Plant something in his honor. It can be something to grow for years, a tree, a rose bush, his favorite perennial plant. It can be something for this season only, a plant that will produce flowers to be cut for your home, vegetables or fruit, something that will honor him. While it’s late in the season, I will be planting tomato plants this year. They won’t be in a garden, but in containers next to my front porch. He will be a part of the planting in multiple ways.

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2. Celebrate the fathers in your family who are still living. I have been known to buy cards for my sons and son-in-law and send them. After all, they are the fathers of my grandchildren. I do wish them a happy Father’s Day online and send them a text. You could include your own father and father-in-law if they are still living, mine aren’t. You can also include others, your siblings, siblings-in-law, cousins, uncles, your well wishes can extend as far as you want.

3. Share the love. Buy the cards you enjoy, write a short note of well wishing, and donate them to a nursing home, hospital, or hospice. Check with the facility first to be sure they are on board with delivering the cards, and to determine how many you need.

4. Start a memory book for your grandchildren. A journal with pictures and stories about their grandfather to help them know him. If they are old enough, ask your grandchildren to tell you about a memory they have of their grandfather.

5. Write a short piece about a father-child moment between your husband and your child. If you have multiple children you can write one involving all of the children, as well as a specific time for each child. These don’t have to be huge life-changing moments, just a snippet in time involving the child and father. For one of my son’s there is the time he (son, age 4) cracked the back window of the pickup. You can put several stories together in a little book, or just send each child the story involving them.

6. Donate flowers, or a plant to your church in his honor.

I hope these ideas help you take the stress off the day and you’re able to enjoy your memories of him as a dad on this day.

What do you  do to observe/celebrate Father’s day?

Did you have a tradition for the day when he was here?

Have you shared memories of him as a dad when your children were very young with them?

Join me on Facebook on my private widow page: https://www.facebook.com/groups/499704707048292/?source=create_flow where we can share our bumps and successes on finding and following a new passion and creating our diamond life.

 

 

 

Posted in Adventure, Food

Jicama and a Barbcue Place – Adventures in Food

Trying new foods is one of my “adventures.” Sometimes it’s food new to me, sometimes it’s a food prepared in a different way, or by someone who knows how to cook it, sometimes it’s a new eating establishment.

This month I have two food adventures to share. A new eating place, and a new food.

First up, Earl’s

Earl’s is a barbecue place in Edmond Oklahoma. I wish I’d thought to take pictures. It’s one of my cousin’s favorite places to eat and he treated me to lunch earlier this week when I had to be in the city.  The interior has a fifties vibe. The restrooms are labeled, Elvis (men’s) and Priscilla (women).  Inside the ladies room are large framed pictures of Elvis and Priscilla, one with them holding baby Lisa Marie.

The dining room has space between the tables so the guests aren’t crowded during the busy times, although we were lucky and were eating at an odd time, so the place wasn’t too busy. The tables are polished with just a little bit of texture remaining. Old license plates from around the country decorate the walls.

The food was good,  they didn’t skimp on the meat or the fries. Dessert was cobbler. I had blackberry, his mom had peach. They didn’t skimp on the servings there either. Mine might have been two servings somewhere else. No, I did not save part of it for later. Ate the whole thing then and there, and enjoyed it. I’m willing to go back next time he wants to go. I might even go by myself next time I’m in that part of the city.

Okra is a must

I first learned about Earls this summer with my cousins and I were traveling to California. We stopped at a barbecue place in New Mexico or Arizona and he was beyond upset that they didn’t serve okra.  I’m not sure New Mexico or Arizona knows about okra. Okra is served almost everywhere in Oklahoma and Texas, and I often order it, sometimes by itself.  I didn’t know okra was considered a staple side dish for barbecue. After all, I always have fries and or coleslaw. However, in his mind okra goes with barbecue, period. Which made it imperative for him that I eat at Earl’s so I could see how barbecue should be served.

It was a great day. Good food and good company.

A New Food

While I was in the city another friend asked me to pick up some   jicama. I thought she wanted it for her. But, since I won’t see her for almost two weeks, and we weren’t sure how long Jicama would last, it turned out it is for me. I hope I like it, I love saying the name “Hic a ma.” with a name that fun to say, it’s bound to taste good.

What is it?

According to the internet jicama is:  a Mexican yam bean or Mexican turnip. It is the edible tuberous root of a Mexican vine, jicama. According to the label on my purchase, and the nice man who helped me find it in the store, it is known as a Mexican potato.

 

Do you try new eating places often?

Do you try new foods often?

What was the last new dish you tried? Did  you like it?

 

 

Posted in Adventure, Food

Celebrate Life – Have Ice Cream for Breakfast

 

Life is a celebration. Sometimes, in the hectic day to day living or just trying to survive, we forget that. Today is Eat Ice Cream for Breakfast Day. The idea is to celebrate the lives of children who are fighting cancer and honor the memory of those who fought and lost. It’s a great way to remember to celebrate life, ours and others’. Children come in all ages. Those who are chronologically young, and those who are young in heart and spirit.

Cancer survivor, Jared celebrating life with ice cream
Cancer survivor, Jared celebrating life with ice cream

 

However, I mixed my dates up and had ice cream for breakfast yesterday in celebration of ALL children who are, or have fought cancer. Even made a special trip to the store to buy ice cream, because I don’t keep it at the house. 

 

Choices, choices, so many ice cream choices.
Choices, choices, so many ice cream choices.

Since today is the actual Eat Ice Cream day, I once again celebrated with ice cream for breakfast.

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Today I will celebrate life by spending time with my grandson. How will you celebrate life today?

Have you ever had ice cream for breakfast?

How about dessert first? Ever eat dessert before the meal?

Please leave a comment sharing your thoughts.

Join me on my Facebook page, Creating a Diamond Life.

 

 

Posted in This and That Thursday, Widow's Stories

Widow Fighting for Justice for her Deceased Husband and Others

 

Finding a new normal. Creating a new life. Both are part of a widow’s reality. What happens when the past can’t stay in the past? What happens when the widow must repeatedly revisit the time of her husband’s death? Can we help her?

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via Cincinnati Enquirer

That is the reality for Cheryl Cole-Candeleresi, Cincinnati, Ohio. She’d been married only two years to her high school sweetheart, David Cole, when he was murdered in 1974. Two men were convicted and sentenced to death for the murder of the police officer and National Guardsman, making Cheryl a widow.

In the late seventies, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled the Ohio death penalty unconstitutional. At that time, all those Ohio inmates who had been sentenced to death had their sentences commuted. Since Ohio did not have a “life sentence without parole” option then, the men automatically became eligible for parole hearings.

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http://www.cincinnati.com/story/news/2017/02/08/wife-slain-cincinnati-officer-s-always-my-mind/97647424/

  The first time the men convicted of killing the police officer came up for parole, no one from David Cole’s family, the police department, or the prosecution’s office was notified. Because Cheryl didn’t know about the hearing, she didn’t testify, and with 50 letters sent in on behalf of the first man, he was released. Later the Supreme Court simply said that a mistake had been made in not notifying those concerned with the case.

Once Cole’s widow, learned about the parole hearing and the first man’s release, she began her campaign to keep the other man behind bars. Every few years she has to repeat the process.

When an inmate has a hearing and parole is denied, the board must then set a timeline for the next appeal. The longest time allowed is ten years.

The last time the inmate came up for parole; over 9000 letters were sent in urging the parole be denied. In addition, Cheryl and others testified in person. Retired Police Lieutenant Steve Kramer believes the more letters the parole board receives, the more likely the convicted man will stay behind bars and have his length of time before the next hearing extended. Cheryl and others will testify before the parole board on February 13 and his hearing will be in March.

She has remarried, has children and grandchildren. She said, “I’m lucky to have a family that supports me through all of this.”

To help support Cole-Candeleresi and the police of Ohio, go to the parole board page http://www.hcpros.org/inmate/roland-reaves?modal=true&iid=A14082700&parole=Roland_A._Reaves,  and leave a comment encouraging the parole board to both deny his parole, and give him another ten years before he can apply again. As Cheryl Cole-Candeleresi said, “we need justice for David and safety for everyone else.”

 

 

 

Here I usually ask my readers to leave a comment with their opinions. However, today, I’m urging you to go to the website above, before February 13, and encourage the Ohio parole board to deny this man’s release.

 

 

 

The original story can be found here: http://www.fox19.com/story/34418885/fallen-officers-widow-wants-convicted-killer-to-stay-behind-bars

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Ultimate Blog Challenge

Six Things I Learned This Month

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What did I learn this month? Before I look share some of the tidbits from my Book O’Edcuation, a couple of observations from the last two days. Not necessarily something I learned, but somethings I was reminded. Like there was a reason for the Boy Scout motto, “Be prepared.” Like

  1. Being prepared means less worry. Had I written a couple of blog posts ahead, today’s post would be no problem. Just post an already written on.
  2. When sick, even foods I’m not fond of taste good. I had made a Fall Harvest Soup last month, it wasn’t my favorite cooking attempt. However, since it wasn’t all bad, I went ahead and froze serving size portions. Good thing, it’s what I ate this weekend.
  3. I can prepare soups, even if it isn’t “soup” weather and freeze it for days when it either is “soup weather” or I just don’t feel like cooking.

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Now, some of the things I learned this month in no particular order of importance or happening:

  1. Ink does not flow well in cold weather. I bundled up and tried to do my morning writing out on the front porch. It’s harder to read than normal because of all the ink skipping. Lesson: write indoors when it’s cold out.
  2. Learned a friend of mine is going to receive an award from a group where we are both members. More information on that when she receives the award. Don’t want to upstage the presenters.
  3. Stories work best with 8 or fewer important characters. A writer friend shared that information from one of her mentors. I can’t think of a television show, movie, or book that had more than eight important characters. Maybe THE HELP.  I’d have to go back and check.
  4. A candle warmer (have one of those?) makes a good tea warmer. Okay, or coffee warmer. That’s what my writer friend Jennifer McMurrain uses hers for, she’s the one who gave me the idea.
  5. I learned how to put 4 squares, or rectangles, on a page for a sheet of pictures, or cards. The explanation will take a whole blog post. I was so excited I could get my affirmation cards on one page to make a printable. It’s not ready yet, but hey, I made progress.
  6. This is important. If I let my licorice tea steep for the full 5 minutes it has a more “licoricey” taste than if I cut the steep short to the 3 minute minimum.

Sometimes there was a lesson, sometimes not, either way I added to my storage of information. The problem is, the storage file is stuffed, so for every new thing I learned, or old idea I remembered, according to someone (I forget who) somewhere (I forget where) we forget twice as much as we learn.

Does that mean the files in my brain will soon be emptied of useless information, and make it easier to retrieve the valuable stuff that’s already there, or gets added? Doubtful. Sometimes important information falls out of my brain and has to be reinserted.

Oh well. At least I learned some new information this month. How about you?

Did you learn anything interesting this month?

Do you purposely set out to learn or  do you just accept new information as it occurs?

What is something you learned (or re-learned) recently?

Once more, I am joining the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

 

 

 

 

 

Posted in Ultimate Blog Challenge

Two Videos to Make Your Smile

For the past month I’ve been posting and sharing with other bloggers on Ultimate Blog Challenge. Each day there is a suggestion on what to blog about, a suggestion I usually ignore, rebel that I am. Today since my throat is  scratchy, and my nose is runny and. I flat out don’t feel good. I’m going to sort of follow the suggestion. The video below, OLDER LADIES, by DonnaLou Stevens makes me smile just thinking about it.

 

Because I’m feeling lousy, and  one of the times when I miss my husband the most. The video below, THIS IS DIRT, by Baxter Black, makes me smile, and reminds me of my husband. Not only was he an ag teacher, but he left the ag mark in our family. One son and daughter in law teach ag and half our grandkids are in ag, or will be when they’re older.

 

 

 

 

Posted in challenges, Ultimate Blog Challenge

Learning From Other Bloggers and a Short Story Review

One advantage of doing a blogging challenge is the opportunity to meet other people and visit with them via their blogs. Another advantage is the easy learning. Just the other day while cruising around blog-land, reading blogs that are part of the Ultimate blog challenge, I learned about the “Deal Me In” short story reading challenge. Since:

1). I love to read and

2). I haven’t read enough in recent months, I thought, why not?

 

Vidya Tiru, also known as Lady in Red, at My R and R Space, shared the reading challenge on her blog. Since I’m just now learning about the challenge (where have I been?) I don’t know if I can officially be part of the challenge or not, but I can follow their guidelines for my own challenge if necessary.

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The idea is to make a list of 52 books, then assign each one a playing card value. Each week draw a card and read the corresponding story. Sounds easy enough. With any luck my list of stories is here. Concentrating long enough to read one short story shouldn’t be too hard.

At first I wasn’t going to take the time to assign a card to each story. However, at the last minute I did because it will make the reading order truly random. Except for the first story.

This story was already on my Kindle, and I hadn’t assigned cards to the stories yet, so I guess you could call this one a wild card or bonus. As part of the challenge we can write a review on our blog or not, the choice is ours. Very casual and easy going, this challenge. I have opted to do reviews, because authors not only like reviews, they need them.

Although, with short stories, the review will be short and sweet because I don’t want to give anything away. The goal is to post the reviews here every Saturday. We’ll see how long this lasts.

AMORE by Jennifer McMurrain

As the name suggests, this is a love story, a slice of life love story.  It’s easy to forget this is just a fictional story with the emotional pull and vivid descriptions. Jennifer McMurrain did a wonderful job of sharing a heartfelt story of love.

Jennifer is a member of Oklahoma Writers Federation, Inc. which is where I met her. She’s a prolific writer living in north east Oklahoma with her husband, daughter and a couple of fur babies. More of Jennifer’s writing can be found on her author page. Linking up with the Ultimate Blog Challenge.

Do you read for pleasure often?

Do you prefer short stories or articles or books?

Do you prefer fiction or nonfiction? Share your thoughts in the comments.