Lori and I take our three grandkids to Church every Sunday and we decided that the needs of our grandkids were more important than ours. So, since Covid restrictions have been eased at Churches, Lori and I have been visiting churches that have programs for young children.
Columns & Editorials
Sometimes in our daily lives we come to a place where we need to be encouraged. These are a few words of wisdom written by H. Jackson Brown Jr.:
Dear Aunt B,
It’s been dominating the non-Covid, non-political, non-environmental news for years. Conspiracy theorists post. They picket. They shout from the rooftops. Pop darling icon Britney Spears must be freed, they say. Locked into a strict conservatorship controlled by her father, cemented in place by a judge in 2007 after her very scary, very public breakdown that culminated in a shaved head and an incident with a green umbrella, Britney leads a sheltered life. We are just now learning the extent of the shelter factor and her disdain for the whole ordeal. Even I’ve been guilty of thinking, “So what? So, she’s a millionairess who has someone else taking care of all the pesky details. Must be awful.” Insert eyeroll. But, now that we’re hearing from the source, learning facts like her inability to drive (her driver license is not in her possession), not being able to see a doctor without approval, being forced to wear an IUD contraceptive when she’d like to have a child, yet seemingly being ordered to work on demand (hence her Vegas residency) for a fortune she’s not allowed access to – that makes me squeamish and sad. Poor celebrities, you say. But, wait, this situation is eerily reminiscent of another time and this same place, America. There was a time where it didn’t take much for a woman to be denied the ability to be a mother. I’d like you to meet Ann Cooper Hewitt. She’s the heroine of our story. But first, let’s talk villain. Let’s talk eugenics.
No one questions the need for almost incessant practice to become a world-class athlete. Long days practicing in the heat or cold, or money spent on individual coaching to perfect a skill are not only understood as necessary but are encouraged to help athletes optimize their skills. Few would argue the inherent value in practice as it relates to athletics, but there is a glaring double standard when the concept of practice is applied to academics.
July 4th is a day when Americans celebrate their independence, but it’s also a day to commemorate two men who played vital roles in procuring that independence. Both John Adams, the second President of the United States, and his successor Thomas Jefferson passed away on July 4, 1826. The two men had an interesting relationship that became increasingly complex as the nation they helped to found developed. According to History.com, Adams and Jefferson were confidantes in the 1780s. But as time wore on, each man developed a different view of what the United States government should be, creating a rift in their relationship that was only widened by the 1800 presidential election. The men ran against each other in that election, which is still considered one of the more contentious elections in American history. Jefferson ultimately claimed victory, a result so unnerving to Adams that he left Washington, D.C. prior to Jefferson’s inauguration. The two men would ultimately reconcile, exchanging more than 150 letters before dying within hours of one another on Independence Day in 1826.
A couple of months ago Lori and I finally cut the cable. That is our satellite cable. Our satellite bill had creeped up to $170 a month. I mainly watched Fox News and Lori loves to watch reruns of old TV shows. So after talking to the Cable Company who promised a price less than half of what we were paying we opted to boost our internet speed to 1 gig and switch to cable. However when they came out to hook it up the technician told us that he only had a work order to boost the internet speed. That he would have to come back and install a cable box. However when we called to have that done we learned that the offer for cable we had been given was no longer available. So we decided to cut the cable completely and stream TV off of the internet.
Now that we’ve gained at least some space from the COVID-19 pandemic, summer travel is heating up. But while you might be eager to hit the road, you won’t want your investments to take a vacation – you need them to work hard for you consistently. But how can you make this happen? Here are some ideas:
My concerns about public education in America piqued after reading a tweet authored by the U.S. Secretary of Education, Dr. Miguel Cardona. In his tweet, Dr. Cardona celebrated the innovative efforts of schools and district’s nationwide to ensure K-12 students are vaccinated against COVID19. Dr. Cardona mentioned “scholarship opportunities” and “prizes” among incentives to encourage students to get vaccinated. The Secretary of Education thought this was worthy of celebration.
Even as Summer is winding up to be a great time away from school, the administrators in Forney ISD are still working to get three new campuses ready for opening day on August 16, 2021.
“This story is a good reminder that God has no limits,” says Talia, 12. “The nobleman’s son was far away, but God is not limited by human constraints and healed the boy. God can do what he wants to and nothing is impossible with him.”
GOD has not given Christians power over spiritual beings. GOD healed many over the ages but it has always been His power that did it. Humans only ask in faith and GOD does the healing. Humans only have power over themselves and some things of the world. One reason GOD did not give humans power is that with the “nature” we have received at birth we could not use GOD’S power to do right. We would be using it in our wars and against each other.
Dear Aunt B,
My husband and I just celebrated an anniversary. It was the porcelain anniversary, to be exact. See, back in the day, there was a chart, surely created by the Hallmark folks or some etiquette guru, that told you what gift you should give for each year, 1-60. I know this because my grandmother worked at a pharmacy, the kind that stopped just short of having a soda fountain. Smith’s Pharmacy, in Seagoville, did have a pretty cool break area where I would be sent to drink a Dr Pepper in silence, and with perfect posture, so that I stood a chance at sweet talking Mr. Smith into giving me a treasure, like an empty perfume tester bottle or the defunct display case for the Timex watches. That was my take on the situation. I think my break area banishment had more to do with my mom needing to color match the perfect Max Factor pancake makeup shade or choose the right 70’s blue eyeshadow in peace. Soon, however, I would tire of being asked by elderly coffee drinkers to recite TV commercials (every kid has a talent, ok) and inevitably slither along the back wall of the gift section to a tiny room behind the jewelry counter. There, Miss Ozella, the family matriarch, would surely be wrapping gifts. Watching her dexterity and the crispness of the lines she made from the glossy pastel paper was mesmerizing. Don’t even get me started on the handmade bows. “Do you know what I’m wrapping, Dina?” “No ma’am.” “Well, it’s an anniversary gift. It’s the wood anniversary gift.” She would point to a chart on the wall. Every year was listed alongside the corresponding gift and the meaning. I never understood. Were these the gifts the couple should be giving to each other? Or, were we all destined to keep a running list of everyone we knew who was married and give the appropriate annual bestowal? I still don’t know the answer. I just knew that room was magical, stacked counter to ceiling with a rainbow of paper rolls and a cornucopia of ribbons just waiting for Miss Ozella to spiral them with one sharp scissor blade. I still get nostalgic when I smell Scotch tape. But, back to anniversaries.
If the 1927 song “I Scream, You Scream, We All Scream for Ice Cream” by Howard Johnson, Billy Moll and Robert A. King is correct, then the world has been a noisy place for quite some time. Though the exact origins of ice cream are unknown, historians agree this popular treat has been around for a very, very long time. The International Dairy Foods Association says the origins of ice cream may reach as far back as the second century B.C. Though he wasn’t around back then, the fifth Roman Emperor Nero, who ruled from 54 to 68 A.D., might have been so fond of iced treats that he routinely sent runners into the Apennine Mountains to retrieve snow that he would then flavor with fruits and juices. That tale might be apocryphal, but there’s no denying ice treats have been enjoyed for a long time. And based on a 2018 report from Grand View Research, Inc. that projected the global ice cream market would reach roughly $79 billion by 2025, it’s fair to say ice cream will remain popular for a long time to come as well.