Let freedom ring

With the Memorial Day holiday just behind us, I wanted to take a moment to honor and remember those brave military men and women that have fallen in the line of duty, protecting our freedoms.  These everyday heroes gave up their lives to pave the way for a better life for each of us.

This past weekend I was in a yoga class, and the instructor’s theme for the day was giving thanks for the freedoms and opportunities we have in America, and for those men and women that make it possible.  Gratitude was the centering thought throughout the class.  It reminded me just how grateful I am. image

Sometimes we get so wrapped up in celebrating the Memorial Day holiday with friends and family, that we lose sight of the real significance of what the day really represents.  These military men and women weren’t seeking fame or fortune, but sacrificed their own lives and safety, out of love and duty, for the land we call home.

Giving gratitude everyday is a small price to pay for what we receive in return. How can we ever repay the debt of losing their precious lives for us? The next time you see a service man or woman in uniform, acknowledge them, buy them a meal, offer them a cup of coffee, a hand shake, hug, smile, or kind word, but most important, thank them for their service; it is only because of them we can………let freedom ring.



the golden rule…do you?

Growing up one thing I heard over and over again was “follow the golden rule,” which basically states, treat others the way you want to be treated.  I heard the same message at home, church, school and even clubs and activities.

I have tried to keep that rule in the forefront of my life, however, sometimes I get side-tracked and haven’t even realized I’ve taken a detour.  It is not my intent to get far from that rule, but I must admit it happens.

When I am having a bad day I may become short with my children. In my mind I am just telling them the frustrations and troubles of my day, but they feel attacked, just by my tone.  It always seems to feel personal to them, and hurt feelings or anger is usually the outcome.  My bad day soon becomes their bad day too.  Before I know it, guilt sets in and my day worsens.image

Over the years, perhaps out of maturity or age, I am learning to make right, what I have made wrong.  It is very humbling to ask for someone’s forgiveness, saying I’m sorry; hoping minimal damage has been done. Things we say in haste may have a profound affect on someone’s  life, without even realizing it.

Making an effort to think before we speak or act can make all the difference.  Relationships get better, communication improves, and new connections are made ……I aim to follow the golden rule……do you?


Mother, may I?

The second Sunday in May we always celebrate Mother’s Day in the USA.   As a child, I knew we honored my Mom on this day, but until I had children of my own, I didn’t realize the deep rooted significance.

Growing up on the farm, my Mom was a stay at home mom.  I thought that was normal procedure in most homes, but I didn’t realize until much later just how lucky my sister, brothers and I were. She worked hard every day making sure we were fed, the house was clean, the chores were done, and she still managed the never ending supply of laundry four kids accumulated daily.  Much of that laundry was hung out to dry, day in and day out……oh, how I loved the smell of our bed linens after a day in the fresh country air.image

My Mom wasn’t the picture you might imagine for a farmer’s wife, she always seemed so glamorous and beautiful to me.  She was a lady through and through, and it was important that her children were well-mannered and polite.  Going to church every Sunday was a must, no questions, no complaining…..it was a given.  We knew, even though Dad handled most of the discipline, it was under Mom’s direct order.

She was a fabulous cook and baker and knew how to entertain like no other.  People always rave about her famous blueberry muffins, which she still makes today.  These muffins are a staple at any family gathering.

Her laughter is contagious, and when she, my sister and I get rolling, watch out…..there’s no stopping us.  She is one of the most dedicated and disciplined people I know.  She is giving, caring and a wonderful friend, that will bend over backwards to make sure everyone is comfortable.

Mom, I can’t thank you enough for all the things you have done for me that I didn’t realize how important they were, or the significant role they played in my life, until later. Thank you for your wonderful example of dedication and discipline; but mostly Mother, may I……thank you for giving me the gift of life and loving each of us.  You will always be the cherished matriarch of our family, I love you.

xoxox……Sheryl Beth

Dandelion Wishes

Here in the Midwest we are in the midst of dandelion season.  One day they just show up, without notice, and take over.  To some people they are an annoyance, but to others they are beautiful.

When my children were little I would receive bright, yellow dandelion bouquets, or a single stem in a glass proudly perched on the kitchen table, waiting for my heartfelt reaction.  It was a symbol of love, that would soon wither away, until the next cluster appeared.

Most people do everything possible to avoid dandelions, we weed them, spray them and hope they never return; but they always seem to show up again when we least expect it, and it’s  a challenge to keep things dandelion free.


In life, everyone faces unwanted challenges and we choose to either conquer them or we don’t.  We may feel isolated and weary, and no matter how hard we try we can’t overcome them; but if we look hard enough there are always life lessons learned.  If we begin to see these challenges or hurdles as blessings or wishes, we come out stronger on the other side.  Sometimes climbing that mountain is the answer to the prayer.

Wishes contain hope, hope brings perseverance, perseverance  conquers the challenge, and unexpected blessings are the gift. Dandelions can be either be wishes or weeds………I choose wishes.   The next time you see a field filled with dandelions will you pick weeds or wishes?