Saturday, November 15, 2014

Lesson 331: Expect the Unexpected

Happy weekend, Readers.
Eloise has two words for you.
Holy snow!

Erie, Pennsylvania,
the Snow Globe Reigning Champion of last season,
got it's first kiss of winter weather.
Man was it a smooch.

Ellen played photographer,

and captured this pile up over a seven hour period.

7 am


and 3 pm.

Mother Nature left my city with a record breaking 
Early Snow Total of 12.5 inches!
When you live in Erie, you learn to expect the unexpected.

As much as I dreaded digging out the 
this early,
the landscapes have made for some beautiful photo opportunities.

This scene outside of Klein Elementary reminded me of
Narnia and the Lamp Post.

It's neat to see the yellow leaves against the bright white.

The leaves are usually gone by the time the snow comes.

I should have seen it coming.
You can learn a lot from observing wildlife.
I've learned that if you are ever vacationing in a tsunami region,
and you see monkeys and elephants moving to higher ground,
haul your @$$ out of there!

Here is this lone goose on the pond.
She's all by herself.
Her buddies headed south.
She missed the memo.

I named her Eloise.

I was curious to see if the heavy snowfall had an impact on my newest curiosity.
Harborcreekers--have you spotted unexpected sight?

Somehow, this chunk of branch was cut and caught between two wires.

It's been hanging there on Clark Road for nearly two weeks.

As you can see in this photo, 
it survived the foot of heavy, wet snow.

When it falls, I want it!
I have plans for making either an end table or a campfire seat out of it.
Locals, let me know if you spot it on the ground 
and call me right away.
Talk about a thick skin!

Speaking of thick skinned,
I spent this evening with the most thick skinned who walk among us.
Tonight was my daughter Natalie's Miss Shining Star pageant,
a special night for special needs girls.

The dictionary definition of "thick skinned" is this:
1.  insensitive to criticism
2.  not easily offended

The girls who get their turn in the spotlight are often the subjects of ridicule.

Told they can't do something because of a physical disability,


or a mental limitation,

makes it seem like they would suffer from self-esteem issues.

But they don't!

These girls are happy.

They love attention.

They value friendships as much as any person would.

They are sweet, kind, and excited about what's to come next.

Most importantly,
they have the love and support from their
and communities.

Thank you to all who take a moment to look beyond the disability.

Ask yourself, 
What are they here to teach me?
What can I learn from knowing them?

Natalie and her friends have taught me this:
Fruit of the Spirit Digital DIY wall art graphics of Galatians 5:22 scripture quote for home decoration. $10.00, via Etsy.

If you expect an event like this to be dull and boring,
think again.
Expect the unexpected.

Take a minute out of your life and get to know someone with lesser ability than you.
You never know what you may be missing.

Jordan, a young man with severe autism rendering him speechless,
has found a way to express himself--
through his fabulous artwork.

Think how blank our walls would be without Jordan and those like him.


In between beauty pageants and snow shoveling,
I've been working on my Family History/Cookbook/Photo Album

The Cookwizardry of a Peculiar People.

I've been tapping into my mother's compilation of family history,
all neatly organized into three ring binders.

Through the reading of these books, 
I've learned where I came from.

Yet, at the same time,
I can't believe a genetic link exists.

Here is an example of one of my scrapbooks:

Nothing is neat,

or even.

I hate straight lines,

or using scissors.

Everyone documents their history in their own way.

There is no right or wrong way to do it.
This way is just Eloise Style.

While searching through my mother's books,
I found some things that have prompted further research.
If I was more organized, 
I'd purchase a small notebook like a news reporter 
and start asking Dad questions about his Coast Guard information.

Dad--with scars on the head?

It's hard to believe this precious little boy
would ever get a scar on his head.

No scars for this Boy Scout.
My dad looks so much like my nephew Jack in this photo.

Here is my dad, making the face he does at me
when I have to walk across the yard to tell him that I
backed into the broad side of his barn...

Photos prompt stories.
Stories are good things.
Eloise says to remember that.

When I asked my father what the deal was with the leash,

he told me his mother used to tie him to the cherry tree out back
because he liked to be outside,
but had a tendency to wander,
hence the harness.

We should have known then, that Dad would end up working 42 years as a welder--
he sported beanies in the 1940's, too!

I discovered my mom was a cutie.
She's the one one the far left of this photo.

Many say I resemble her.
I never saw the similarity myself until I found this photo.

I could have WON that safety slogan contest!

I've looked through lots and lots of photos of me and Kenyan.

This one is is my favorite.
Me digging for buried treasure,
while Kenyan sat watching me, eating Pringles.

Some things never change.

Kenyan is not as sedentary as she used to be though.

Here she is last week on a taper run.

Little Pop of Blue is going to run the Rock N Roll Marathon out in Las Vegas on Sunday.

Good luck, Little Blue, with you next 26.2!

I've continued on with my quest for strong, digging arms.
Eloise is nearly done with the 58 Day Wellness Challenge.

I'll report more on the challenge and the changes I've made next week.
I can tell you one hint--
I've added lots of color to my life as a result.
Color from plenty of vegetables,
and color from THEM:

My crazy and congenial teammates.

I could win this one!
Expect the unexpected!

I have lots of things to do this weekend, so it is time for Eloise to get some shut-eye.

Enjoy the photos from the week set to one of my favorite versions of Amazing Grace,
by guitarist Josh Wilson.

It's bound to be one of your favorites, too.
Even if you are not a fan of Christian Music,
you just may like this one.
Expect the unexpected!

Peace be with you, Readers.

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