Friday, August 10, 2018

MEANINGFUL WORDS:



Michael and I have been married sixty-six years as of last month.  You have read much of what we've been about...it's my pleasure to write about our lives and we are transparent...the way we are 24/7.  Two ordinary people, very much in love with each other and trying our best to please our Lord.  We've certainly fallen on our faces many times but God picked us up, dusted us off and set us right.

As of last week I instituted what I call 'Hot Date Sunday'.  I wanted to put some diversion and a little excitement into Michael's life.  The first date was last Sunday and I picked him up at 11:00 for worship in his building; then we went down to the first floor dining room...had a table for two...and had the first of our dates.  It was beautiful and happy...and it so lifted our spirits!  What a wonderful day.

We returned to his apartment; he wanted us to have a heart-to-heart talk...which we did.  Talk about 'heart'...oh my, it was 'all heart'.  Thank you, God for such a gift...thank you!

We've just completed our first week of side-by-side bicycle exercise in the gym in his building...I kept up w/Mr. Speedy...forty-five minutes.  Whoosh...so proud of myself...yay, yay!  We try to do that around three Monday through Friday.  It seems to also be lifting his spirits...mine too!

Suddenly I realized I had not written him any notes, cards...nothing.  I had always peppered him with notes and cards...why had I stopped when he probably needed them most?  Oh my!  So, I decided it was time to put something into words for him; admittedly cried while writing...I couldn't stop because I was overwhelmed with feelings for him.

Now, some might say...'Oh, that's much too personal, too private to put in print for others'.  If you feel that, I'm sorry but I feel it's okay to let our friends know what's taking place in our personal lives.  Here's My Letter to Michael, My Love.



Hi Sweetheart,

Please sit down and take your time while you read this note from me,
I’m the one who loves you more than anyone else…except God.
I want you to always, always remember and think of that.

You and I are most blest by our loving Father…
He has been molding us all our lives; you and I.
He put us together, even though we are in many ways, opposites.
But we seem to always complement each other.
You are a person of ‘focus’.
I am a person like a kaleidoscope.
I recall hearing you tell others,
“Vasca has shown me the beautiful things in life.”

You are…
My Hero
My Friend
My Advisor and My Love…the love of my life…my only love.

This is, as you call it, our fourth quarter, and even though it isn’t as we thought it would be?  It is what we have.
God knows our hearts, oh so well He does.  He knows that we are strong in Him and we can handle whatever comes our way…as we always have.  Haven’t we?
He has us; He has us and our names are written on the palm of His hand.
We are blest more than we ever dreamed of being blest.  God sees to that.

So? 

Every day is a new day; the day before us. 
We open our eyes and thank Him for the day with all the beauty He provides.
Think about all He has done and continues doing for you and for me! 
Just think of all the wonderful things in our lives. 
Are we thankful?  You better believe we are…yes, indeed.

It is up to you, up to me to make of the day what we can, what we choose!
We can make it a bad day or one of the best.
Let’s choose the best, the greatest; filled w/kindness, understanding & love.

The joy of the Lord will be our strength; the joy of the Lord IS our strength.

And always, always think of how much I love you, I adore you;
My love grows for you Michael…every time I think of you and your loving ways, your tender heart, the way you serve others and…the way you love me, soooo precious!  

Read this note every morning when you wake up.

Read it and be strong.
Read it and be happy.
Read it and smile.
Read it and think of me.
Read it and thank God.        

I LOVE YOU ALWAYS, 
VASCA

P.S.  Friends of ours, this is for you! 
 And as always it's from my heart...to yours,
Vasca

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

THE ROAD HOME...



"We keep moving forward, opening new doors 
and doing new things because we're curious,
and curiosity keeps leading us down new paths."
Walt Disney 

Michael and I have had an awesome life; we truly have.  God has molded us without our realization;  We've been together now for sixty-six years...wow, that's a long, long time .  I cannot say that it has been all silky smooth because it hasn't.  We've had our personal ups and lots of personal downs.  But after all, life isn't perfect, is it?  M and I are opposites in almost everything...but we've always come together whatever the point of contention.  Now, after all this time, we understand each other.  And, we appreciate our relationship...in fact, we are deeply in love with each other.

I had thought we would settle in his hometown and never, ever move.  Yay!  Well, that certainly was short lived.  When Steve (our first son) was a baby we moved to Kentucky so M could attend a military course at Fort Knox...he was still in the National Guard.  Brag on him...he was 1st in Map Reading...oh my, did we ever have arguments over roads!  Ha!  He always won...you think?

From Kentucky we moved to Odessa the roads were sometimes a bit sandy.  Mike tried his hand in the oilfield...he absolutely hated it.  So?  He quit...no job in sight and he couldn't find one.  Another baby boy. Moved back to his hometown.  Owned a gas station...worked in a joint venture hardware store w/his dad.  

Accepted for active duty in the Army and we were off...first call was Virginia.  Before the first week was over, M was spirited off to an unknown destination and commanding a stevedore company!!!  Talk about the adventure...woohoo!  Four little boys and me...on our own in a strange place.  But...we made it, we made it in style and loved it...loved it.  Happy us! Beautiful roads...all trees!  

Lewis Carroll wrote: "Every adventure requires a first step."                                                              

This shy girl was afraid of her own shadow but I believe God did a number on me.  All of a sudden, at the end of each day, I was not the girl that I was that morning...I had changed and would continue changing...day by day!  

Michael took me around the world and back...I had never dreamed that would be my life!  'My Life'...,my life indeed was being formed quite rapidly and most radically.. I loved it.  I did.

M and I were on all sorts of roads...and we usually argued about which one was the 'right one'.  But, we always found our way.  Once I got so angry w/him over directions that I threatened to take Steve and move home to my parents...only I had no money.  Of coursae, we were lost so I couldn't very well walk.  That settled that.  Talked about fun?  Ha, Ha!

Somehow we ended up in Wisconsin in 1991. I think it was because when we were fishing on Lake Michigan I caught all the fish and that cinched that...we moved there.  Those roads get covered in snow and ice in the winter and it also gets VERY cold...brrr!  But we loved it...loved it.  Molding.  You can be molded while freezing...God is very good at that.  

God had some idea about us going to China...yes, He did and that was a big step, deluxe.  Good grief, we were seventy-two years old after all.  We went for a year and ended up almost three years.  But, we loved it, we loved it.  God smiled on all of us.  

And now?  Oh, now!  Here we are, as Michael dubs it 'the fourth quarter.  Lives have changed and neither of us is like we were...because we've changed in ways we surely never dreamed of.  Different people...oh yes, we are...so different.  From one day to another, change is there/here!  

This is the first day of August, so here's what I am planning on

NEW MONTH
NEW BEGINNING
NEW MINDSET,
NEW FOCUS,
NEW START, 
NEW INTENTIONS, 
NEW RESULTS.

I had an awakening today; indeed I did.  I dream quite a lot; I know most people do the same.  Many of my dreams are unusual in that they exhibit themselves in a real fashion within a very short time.  Something has changed in my heart; and it's fine.  It's fine and I have a new sense of what's needed.  

I'll let you know what happens...along the way.  I'm smiling because I'm thinking about our awesome God...and I believe He is still molding me.  Wouldn't you think that it might just be a tad difficult molding a stubborn, eighty-eight year old woman?  Of course not, He is God.  He is God and He does fantastic things all the time...even when I forget to tune in.  And...He doesn't fool around.  Nope! 

Okay, here it is 1:00 AM; I should have been in my bed at least a couple of hours ago...but all I can say about that is...I was, I am inspired.  New Me?  Same old me...outwardly, I think I'm curious as to this new path I'm on.  Interesting?  Indeed, it is most interesting.  

As always,
From My Curious, Adventuresome Heart...To Yours,
Vasca 



















Friday, July 13, 2018


It is always worth asking, "Who speaks through us?

I hear voices all the time; rattling on inside my head; conversations, music playing...it used to concern me that perhaps all was not well concerning my mental state.  You know, I don't fret a bit about it anymore.  It's comforting and quite interesting.  

My mother began having me take singing lessons when I was a little girl...I've no idea why she wanted that for me...I certainly was not gifted with a great voice.  I was born with some problems and that bothered my mother...constantly.  She felt that my difficulties were her fault; that she had been negligent and caused them.  Not so, it had nothing to do with her but she was never convinced of that.

I think that's why she had me taking singing lessons to make up for what she thought was a drawback in my life.  There I was, taking voice lessons at the age of eleven.  My very first boyfriend was my voice teacher's son.  Dickie Lee was his name!  Yikes.  

When we moved to California, mother found me another voice teacher and I rode the public bus to my lessons.  My teacher had me singing light operas and I still sing those songs in my head.  

Fast forward to the age of nineteen when a blonde, extremely handsome hunk sat behind me in church one Sunday.  He had just moved to Texas and immediately went to work (on me as well as a paying job).  Our congregation had a radio program that M and I were part of.  Seems we made beautiful music together; one thing led to another and we married.  

We drove to Colorado for our honeymoon and sang all the way there and back.  Music was a big part of our lives and our four sons are all gifted with beautiful voices.  I took them to choral practice with me and they learned all the music...good little performers.  Our friends used to bribe them to do Stars and Stripes Forever!  Ha! 
I lost my voice as the result of a serious car accident so I sing like a frog...only worse.  Then when Michael's Parkinson's struck his voice began fading...and it so distresses him.  He thinks people don't like trying to talk to him 'cause they can't understand him.  It embarrasses him greatly.

So, we have voices on our minds; therapy didn't seem to fix the problem so he deals with it best he can and it's not easy.  

Our family has discovered his voice comes out full force when they sing w/him in his apartment.  This week they spent an hour and a half singing with him.  He began almost whispering and the more they sang the bigger his voice became and he didn't want to stop.  They did a video and it's a great success!  Love it.  Now we'll see what we can do to continue and keep his spirits up.  It's wonderful. 

Music is therapy.  Music moves people.  
It connects people in ways that no other medium can.  
It pulls heartstrings.  It acts as medicine. 
 Macklemore    

Being unable to sing hasn't really bothered me; I've found I'm using my voice in a different way...writing.  I've always enjoyed/loved writing and communicating w/words.   Michael encouraged me to write a weekly journal when we were in China.  So for two and a half years I wrote an article every week and sent it to family and friends in the U.S.  

Later on, as we settled down in Weatherford, he encouraged me to start a blog...as you are reading this...it was all his idea.  I find I can make a sort of music with words and it's wonderful therapy.  It has connected me with people everywhere and it pulls at my heartstrings.  It is medicine and I give God all the credit; after all, He is my physician...the best. 

Over time, I have come to believe that 'brave' 
does not mean that we think it does.  
It does not mean 'being afraid and doing it anyway.  'Nope.  
Brave means listening to the still small voice inside and doing as it says.  
Regardless of what the rest of the world is saying.  
Glennon Doyle Melton

Michael and I both hear voices; lots of voices.  We pay close attention...mostly to God and His voice, the Comforter that He left for us.  

While there are loud, clanging voices all around us I cannot let them into my peace of mind.  It isn't healthy for me.  You see, it's important that I am brave and listening to the quiet voice and do what I know is right.  Focus on what's going on, making the best of the situation...one day at a time, today is important.  

I am Michael's advocate; it's important that I keep my eyes on doing my best without losing my focus.  It takes time, it takes effort, it takes prayer...much prayer...it works, you know!   

I've found that when I step out my door, I am able to set the tone for the day.  I'm greeting everyone I see, smiling and saying something nice to them...about how handsome or beautiful they look and it makes such a difference.  Simply taking a moment to reach out and touch their shoulder or their arm...they don't think I'm going to attack them.  No Way!  

Nice things are music to people's ears...trust me, works magic and people go on their way with a smile for someone else.  

There was a big luau festival here yesterday; in both buildings and our activity director took it upon herself to draw M out of his room.  She ran over here, knocked on my door and was so excited she couldn't stand still.  She had on her grass skirt and all the trimmings...cute, cute and she had a video of M cavorting around the room.  Precious and it made my heart sing.  Great therapy.

Doesn't really matter what kind of voice one has; it does matter how one uses it.  Lots of people have problems with their voices.  Sign language is a voice.  Writing is a
voice.  People have trouble understanding me on the phone and I really, really try to speak clearly but I just simply have a funny kind of voice.  It has a husky tremor and that's that.  Sort of low, lower and lowest.  Woof!

Main thing is to use our voices in a way that is pleasing to the one who matters the most, 
God, my Father.   He knows best; every single time and He is pulling for us...24/7.

From my humming heart...to yours,   

Vasca