Thankful

10 June Accomplishments…

  1. Fixed the washing machine.
  2. Learned how to use our new really big and heavy push mower since H had foot surgery and  is not able to mow.
  3. Started sewing/quilting again.
  4. Set up Google Doc folders for the 2018-19 school year – scanning, categorizing, sharing with my new 4th grade team.
  5. Learned how to join a Pinterest group board and share to that board.
  6. Set up an Instagram account and learned to double-click the photo in order to like.
  7. Walked more steps in one day than I have in a long time.  Still only half of what I was walking.
  8. Started my cookbook.
  9. Spray painted and built a shelving unit out of crates.
  10. Put my own gas in my car.  (H has always put gas in my car.  I don’t even carry gas money with me.)

Until Next Time

Rita

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Conversation in the Classroom

Conversation in the Classroom #1…

Viewing finances through the eyes of a 9-year old.

Student: I’m going to get a job that pays $8.00 an hour and be rich.
Me: Well let’s figure out how rich you will be in just one month.
How much is $8.00 * 8 hours?
Student: $64.00 and that is a lot of money.
Me: Yes it is, but that is only one day. How much is $64.00 * 10 days?
Student: $640.00, now I am really rich.
Me: It sounds like it, but let’s look at $640.00 * 3 (figuring 30 days in a month.) And we can round to make the multiplication easier.
Student: $600.00 * 3 = $1800. I told you I would be rich.
Me: I just chuckle a little. Let’s add back the 40 * 3 that we rounded and you would be making around $1900 per month. But wait, you don’t get to take home that money. You need to pay taxes on it. So let’s subtract around $400.00 dollars for taxes. Now you have $1500.
Student: That sounds great.
Me: Do you drive a car?
Student: Yes, a sports car.
Me: We are going to go low on a car payment, so let’s subtract $300.00. Now you have….
Student: $1200.00!
Me: What about rent or mortgage for your house? Let’s subtract $700.00.
Student: That leaves $500.00.
Me: That sounds like a lot of money for a 9 year old, but do you want to eat?
Student: Of course.
Me: Well, you now have $500.00 to spend on food for you and your family, clothes, the electric and water bill, gas for your fancy car, and insurance.
Student: Hmmmm…… I’m going to get a job that pays $10.00 an hour and be rich.

Until Next Time

Rita

Bible, Hope

What is Your Spiritual Foundation Built Upon?…

Costa Rica “drummer” 2014

For many years H, D, and I would travel to the University of Wisconsin at Stevens Point for family Suzuki Camp.  D played the violin, and we enjoyed our time as a family at camp.  During free time, students would build rock sculptures in various rock gardens located throughout the campus. Their hope was that each sculpture would still be standing the next day.  The patient students would search for the perfect foundation and meticulously place stones one on another.  You could see them hold their breath and wait.  Some would even jump up and down to make sure the sculpture was secure.  Unfortunately, most sculptures fell crashing to the ground as the rocks had not been stacked on the proper foundation. 

circa 1995

Jesus told the parable of the wise and foolish builders:
Matthew 7:24-27 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.”

Nicaragua 2016 – Soon after this photo was taken, a strong wave came over the top of this sculpture, causing it to tumble into pieces.

A strong spiritual foundation is vital in my life. Without a foundation built on God’s word, I am just like the foolish man who built his house (life) on the sand. One wave  and whoosh, everything crumbles and washes away. If I am like the wise man who built his house (life) on doing and following what God says (not man’s paraphrase or understanding), the ultimate end result is salvation built on the belief that Christ descended from heaven to become man,  died for my sins and rose the third day, and shortly thereafter taking his rightful place again in heaven.  It is easy to get caught up in man’s perceptions or interpretations or to explain away our thoughts or actions in our human mind, but God has laid out His way, His truth, His plan in the Bible.

Dear Lord, I pray that my beliefs and actions would be based on your word and that my faith is grounded securely on a strong foundation of solid rock.

Until Next Time

Rita

Encouragement

100 Marbles…

Have you ever been asked or told to do something that on the surface looked quite simple, yet when you attempted the task found the opposite to be true?  Little did I know the container of marbles would become a source of pain, determination, and encouragement.

“Pick up 100 marbles with your toes.”

“That’s it”, I thought.  “I’ll be finished with this in no time.”  Earlier this year that statement would have been true.  It would have been a breeze, a piece of cake.  But on that day, it was a much different story.

Around October of 2017, I started experiencing severe pain on the back of my heel and the outside of my ankle.  There was a large lump, and the area was quite painful to touch or quite frankly, at times even to look at.  One doctor told me rest. stay off it, and the pain would subside.  He felt it wasn’t bad enough for surgery or physical therapy.  How does a school teacher stay off her feet?  But, I rested my foot as much as possible for the next couple of months.  The heel was not getting  better, and I dreaded the thought of even walking from the car to the school doors.  Stairs were almost impossible.  It was time for a second opinion.  The second doctor looked at the x-rays, signed me up for physical therapy and told me to use ice and heat.  If the heel did not settle down considerably, he would schedule surgery for early June, after school was out for the year.  The recovery would be a six month process, and I should be walking normally by the new year.

Physical therapy helped some, but not enough.  I woke up dreading each day and all the steps I would need to take just to function.  It was decided that the surgery would be moved up to February instead of waiting until June.  So on February 2, I had a large bone spur removed from the back of my heel and the Achilles tendon reattached.  The surgery was extensive, but it went well.  I was making huge progress, and it was time to start physical therapy to teach my foot how to walk again.

Enter the 100 marbles.  One of my exercises was to use my toes to pick up 100 marbles (one at a time) from a towel on the floor and drop them into a container.  It really didn’t look difficult, but as I soon found out, it was much harder than I anticipated.  I initially put the marble between my toes; it was efficient and got the job done.  Success!!!!!  Then the therapist watched what I was doing.  Nope, I couldn’t put the marble between my toes, I had to grip them with my toes.  I sat there for 25 minutes desperately trying to grip marbles and drop them into a container.  My leg ached, my toes ached, and I was losing patience.  I needed to stop so many times and rest, but finally all of the marbles were successfully transferred from the towel to the container.  I had done it!!!!!  Oh wait….this process had to be repeated each time I came to physical therapy.  What was I going to do?  I decided this exercise was indeed helpful in the recovery process, and if I could grip one marble at a time, couldn’t I grip multiple marbles?  My goal became to grab more marbles each time and complete the task quicker than the last time.  My record was four marbles at one time and completing the entire 100 marbles in 10 minutes.

So many parts of this process remind me of my walk with Jesus.  At times I approach my christian walk my way, not God’s.  I take shortcuts in my prayer time or even reading the Bible.  I do just enough to be kind and considerate to others.   But if I really stop and look, I realize I need to dig deeper and work through some hard things to become stronger and more grounded in my faith.   There is a lot going on in our country right now.  Our world is changing quicker than I would like.  On the surface it appears easy to respect one another, to value one another, and to love one another.  Unfortunately, we have lost sight of people as souls with feelings.  We have allowed ourselves to think our way or opinions or thoughts are more important than others.  In trying to make sense of what we are hearing and seeing, some of us have lost our way.

I love these verses about human interaction.

Romans 12:9-16  “Let love be genuine. Abhor what is evil; hold fast to what is good. 10 Love one another with brotherly affection. Outdo one another in showing honor. 11 Do not be slothful in zeal, be fervent in spirit, serve the Lord. 12 Rejoice in hope, be patient in tribulation, be constant in prayer. 13 Contribute to the needs of the saints and seek to show hospitality. 14 Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse them. 15 Rejoice with those who rejoice, weep with those who weep. 16 Live in harmony with one another. Do not be haughty, but associate with the lowly.  Never be wise in your own sight.”

Until Next Time,

Rita