Musings From A Musical Mind

Posts tagged ‘Memories’

Times Of Your Life

I heard this great song today while I was getting ready for my day.  I always have iHeart Radio on in my bathroom while getting dressed and going through my routine in the morning.  When older songs come on this custom made station (Okay – I’ll admit it – I love Barry Manilow and have a custom station with all his hits and those artists around that time period – the wonderful 70’s!) it is always a pleasure to hear my old favorites.

But today – this was different.  My custom station had never before played this great Paul Anka song recorded back in 1975.  It brought much nostalgia to mind – and listening to the lyrics was a treat!  Those of you who remember this song and say to yourself, “where did this come from?” will remember that it was an old kodak film commercial back in the 1977.

Enjoy both Paul Anka’s version – or the commercial version – and remember the times of your life.

God Bless


Home

1992

The other day I got a “blast from the past” as my daughter and son-in-law on a recent road trip to California sent pictures back to me from a life of ours 20 years ago when we lived in Fortuna. Greg was the pastor of a small church for 3 1/2 years, our daughter was 14 months old when we moved there – and our son was born there 3 years later. Consequently, we have many good memories of our time in that place. I think everyone would agree with me – the best times of your life are when your children are small – and it is no different for us, however the humble beginnings and places we’ve lived while raising them.

After visiting that town that Ashlee hardly remembers because she was only 4 years old when we moved away – she called me that night and said, “Mom – how did you live there?  There’s nothing there!”  So true – and yet – we were happy.  We did not have cell phones, computers or any way of social networking.  I went to the park with Ashlee and worked on crafts during the day.  A stress break for me back then was baking.  Life was incredibly simple as we lived in the parsonage right next to the church – so we hardly ever needed the car except to go to the store and on occasion to the mall in a nearby larger town.  Fortuna was small – with one or two grocery stores – but they did have a Papa Murphy’s pizza which was called “Murphy’s” back then.  And you should see the one story hospital where Shawn was born!  The town and circumstances did not dictate to us if we would be content and full of joy in our “job” – we simply were.  Home is and always has been where our heart is.  How fortunate for us in our many moves throughout our ministry life – that we have always rested and relied on that fact.  It doesn’t matter that our children are now grown-up and live away from our home – we established our family home many years ago with them – and they still remember and forever keep it in their hearts.

This song from the recent winner of American Idol, Phillip Phillips – says it all.  I wanted to share it with you today.

Enjoy and God Bless!

30 Years Ago

This month marks 30 years that Greg and I have been married. So for the next five days (our actual anniversary is on Labor Day) I will be posting a “blast from the past” picture.

The above picture was taken when we became engaged the end of March, 1981. Look how young we were. Can anyone really tell what life is going to be like when you are that young? We certainly did not. We had not known ministry jobs and complications – financial reversal and two children – who would grow up to make us so proud. We only knew that for us – the world was pretty small – as we planned our upcoming September 5th wedding, and tried to get through another semester of college.

Where were you 30 years ago?

God Bless

Drive

This next song is for my friend Carla Ives – who the other day when I posted a song by “The Cars” – openly admitted that she loved this group – like me and that “Drive” was among her favorite songs.  Thanks Carla – great suggestion!

who’s gonna tell you when
it’s too late
who’s gonna tell you things
aren’t so great
you can’t go on
thinking nothing’s wrong
who’s gonna drive you home tonight

who’s gonna pick you up
when you fall
who’s gonna hang it up
when you call
who’s gonna pay attention
to your dreams
who’s gonna plug their ears
when you scream

you can’t go on
thinking nothing’s wrong
who’s gonna drive you home tonight

who’s gonna hold you down
when you shake
who’s gonna come around
when you break

Addicted To Love

Addicted to Love (song)

Image via Wikipedia

It’s so great how the ‘lost’ can be ‘found’ – if you wait long enough.  25 years ago, Greg and I were youth pastors in Jeannette, PA.  We had a small youth group – but with those eight or ten ‘kids’ we developed  deep and lasting relationships – especially with four of the boys.  They were and always will be ‘the lost boys’.  This was my pet name for them – because each one had their own unique set of circumstances and challenging home lives.  We came into their lives in that crucial part of life – when they were teenagers.

You never know how you will affect lives while you are in the middle of your own journey – or what the future impact may be.  We were just simply doing our job and it was easy to love these kids.  And with no other distractions and no children of our own yet – they became our ‘children’.

After moving away from Jeannette in ’86  – we took a position in New Castle, PA and two of the boys came to visit us.  I was pregnant with Ashlee at the time and it was so great to see them!  They told us of some trouble that one of the boys had found himself in – and we wanted to reconnect with him – even back then – but it was hard in those days with no internet.  Sadly we lost touch with all of them and some time later moved back to the west coast.  Because there was no internet yet – or at least very limited – I had no way of finding anyone – but always thought about them and wondered what had happened.  The memory of my ‘lost boys’ was always on my mind.  When we first had internet, back in the late 90’s I tried once more to locate them.  Nothing.  Years passed and I got on myspace and looked.  Nothing.  Then a few years later I got on facebook and tried again.  No luck – until….about 6 or 8 months ago.  I typed in two of the boys names and FOUND THEM!!  It was like a miracle!  I contacted them – one now lives back in Jeannette and the other is in the army and stationed in Afghanistan.  What a thrill to talk to them and catch up on their lives – there’s a whole lot to catch up – 25 years!

One of the ‘boys’ suggested that we use Skype to talk to each other using a webcam on the computer and seeing a real face in front of you while you’re talking.  We had never used it before and after a lot of bugging on his part – Greg finally downloaded Skype.  Last week we were able to call him.  I can’t tell you how it felt to see him (this was the one that had some trouble in his teens after we left) and to see that he’s all right.  During the conversation I said, ‘You know Randy – you were the original ‘lost boys’ – you were like our kids’  and without missing a beat he said, ‘Well in many ways – you were our parents’  That was so nice to hear.  That ‘lost boy’ is 40 years old now.  And he has never forgotten us.

Two of the other boys were found from this blog.  I wrote an article about a year ago – still looking for these ‘boys’ and wrote their names in an article hoping someone would see them.  Someone did.  One of the boys himself –  who was not on facebook – was using ‘google’ to find another one of these boys and my blog popped up!  He commented on the article and gave me his email.  That was amazing too!  He told me news of he and his brother and what a journey their lives had taken.  Randy and I pushed and pleaded with him to join facebook – and he finally did!

Here is a video I made for the four ‘lost boys’.  This song has much meaning – it was an ’80’s tune that played on the radio ALL THE TIME back then and Bill use to ‘sing’ parts of it and make us all laugh.  Good times, good times.

Here’s hoping that whatever  you have ‘lost’ – will someday be ‘found’.

Enjoy!

The Remains Of The Day

”]Cover of "The Remains of the Day [Region ...

Last night I watched a brilliant story called ‘The remains of the day‘ with Anthony Hopkins and Emma Thompson.

As I was watching it – and getting involved in the story and the characters – I was keenly aware of the passage of time and events in our lives that slip by too fast.  Things and people in our lives that are here one day and gone another – or those that we feel will always be there – and then they’re not.  Choices that we make and things that we don’t think too much about – until they are gone.

In this story a man who is a butler of a huge household in England – hires a woman to be the head housekeeper.  They work together for years and have a very tragic and unrequited love story – because he cannot risk his own heart.  And eventually – she leaves and marries someone else.

It is 20 years before they see each other again – and she talks about her regret and the lost years – and what might have been – but realizes that it is too late – and though she cries when leaving him at the end – you have the sense that she does not love him anymore and that she has chosen her husband and the life they built together.

It is brilliantly acted – and you can actually feel the remorse and regret from both of them in their later years – though no love between them is ever mentioned. All because his life is very structured and safe and he cannot allow himself to fall in love.  I wanted to say – all through the movie, ‘you KNOW you love her – tell her!!!’  But he would not.  And he is alone.

Loving someone – giving your heart away is always a risk.

C. S. Lewis addressed the issue of protecting the heart back in the 1950’s: “If you want to make sure of keeping (your heart) intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Love anything, and your heart will be wrung and possibly broken. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket – safe, dark, motionless, airless – it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. The alternative to…the risk of a (broken heart) is damnation. The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from the danger (of a broken heart) is Hell.”

No friend will break your heart in Hell. No loved ones will disappoint you there. Why? Because there are no friends in hell. There is only the love of the self in hell. Hell is the place where the idolatry of the self comes to its logical, final conclusion.

I can tell you how to guarantee your heart will never be broken. The price, however, is astronomical. It will create for you the closest thing I know of to a “hell on earth.” Never give your heart to anyone – a friend, a child, a brother/sister, a sweetheart. Never give your heart and you consign yourself to living out your life in self-imposed loneliness.

My counsel is “Give your heart,” but give it wisely. Give it only to those who are capable of appreciating and treasuring it. The Biblical way of expressing this caution is “Don’t throw your pearls before swine” (Matthew 7:6). But even if you are successful in only giving your heart to those who will treasure your gift, your heart will be broken.

When your heart is broken, and sooner or later it will be, seek its healing in the presence of others. When you have allowed others to help you with the healing process, you will affirm the words of Alfred Lord Tennyson to be true: “‘Tis better to have loved and lost than never to have loved at all.”

As The Time Draws Near…

As I am now in ‘mid-life’ with a BIG birthday looming before me in less than a year – it has caused me to reflect and reevaluate my thinking on several things.  And though some fundamental things never change – faith in God – the right way to react when things go sideways – keeping a ‘cool’ head when  suffering verbal and emotional abuse from those close to me – keeping my faith when things didn’t turn out the way I thought they would – then I know I am on the right road.  And somehow by the grace of God – I have the strength of character to love and forgive.

I am blessed – by a great heritage and strong husband.  I also have wonderful friendships in my life – who understand me, know me and choose to love me anyway.  With friends – you know they don’t have to – they do it because they want to – that’s the power of a good friend.  But these things alone – do not define me – or must not stop me from growing and reaching out to others – being the best at what I can be – loving and encouraging – living by example and taking responsibility for my own happiness and choices along the way.

We spend a lot of time with good friends – yes it takes EFFORT!  And can be very exhausting!  But it is worth the investment!!

Connecting with these good friends is important – and worth the effort.   I find this is true especially as I get older – the ones in my peer group are the ones that will be doing life with me as I age – and graduate into my retirement years – many of them we will live close enough to see often – others we will stay connected to over the internet – sharing life, pictures of kids and grand-kids and sharing myself – encouraging and loving.  Parents that raised me will not always be with me – on either side of the family – and they belong to another generation and time – my children are not going to be always with me either – they are only on loan and belong to their own time and need their own people as well.  My grand-kids will come and go in and out of my life – and have their own life – It is normal – and it is healthy.  And I am prepared for this and wouldn’t want it any other way.  My family does not fulfill me or define me – my kids do not define me or own me and I do not own them – my happiness and self-worth comes from God alone – and when I am filled up – I can be a blessing to others – with no guilt and no expectations.  I can just be free to share my life and love with others.

It is tough as people become older to do this.  The world tends to ‘shrink’ – and become all about the children and grandchildren.  And although this is normal for most families  – I want to carry with me a ‘healthy’ position in my own family and have my own children view me as ‘friend’ and not just ‘Mom’ as time marches on.  It is important to me that my kids and grandchildren know that I will not give advice  (unless asked) – or judge them in any way – once they are grown up.  But be full of love and acceptance – with my doors and arms always open – when they need them.  I want them to have their own lives and be productive and happy.  Many older people do not have any friends their own age.  It takes too much effort – family is easier and safe.  Greg and I are going to change this trend for our generation – and as we age we plan to take MANY people with us – if not physically – then we will take them in our hearts!  We will be that couple in a retirement community – playing golf with others and getting together for coffee and dinner many nights out of the week.  We will share ourselves and take walks down by the water and talk about life, our kids and grand-kids and the things that brought us to where we are today.  And we will finish smiling and laughing – surrounded by those people most important to us.

I have a picture in my mind what it will be like to enter into those years – full and happy – secure in my relationships and loved for who I am.  Things that have troubled me – or complicated situations in family, or past friendships will not matter anymore.  I will go out smiling and laughing – and ‘finishing strong’ – with no regrets.

What is holding you back today – moving forward towards the future – from ‘finishing strong’?  Who are you going to take with you?  Who are you going to invest in?  Will others around you be able to say, “They were loved and had many friends”?  I hope so – for those who have many friends are rich indeed!

God Bless

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