Sunday’s Sermon

Did you watch the Royal Wedding?  I tuned in about 45 minutes before the ceremony, box of tissues nearby.  What I saw was sooo much Love radiating from St. George Chapel that it oozed through my television screen.  After a day of grief and frustration, trying not to be angry, it was More than a Breath of Fresh Air.

You probably know that I have been a Prince Charles Fangirl since I was 11.  Before you say it, I never thought much of Di, so don’t go there.  The boys, William and Harry, I have practically raised…err..you know what I mean.  The Queen and her Duke have always enthralled me, way before “The Crown”.  No surprise that I have been intrigued with an American marrying into the Family.  It appears to me that Ms. Meghan Markle is seriously the Real Deal.  I loved Everything about the wedding–the Music, the Dresses, the Preacher, the fairy-tale ride in the carriage.  It was simply splendid.

I bet the Preakness and I don’t want to talk about it…

Saturday even found us at the Old National Events Plaza to watch Olivia dance…She gets better every year!

Michael Curry, the current Bishop of the Episcopal Church, was the preacher at The Wedding.  He reminded me so much of Hutch, our pastor at Old North back in the 80’s.  He had a decidedly Black Church presentation, and some of the stiff-upper-lip Brits looked at him oddly, but his Message was Exquisite.   (He almost re-converted me, but I’m staying a None for a while.)  You should catch the sermon on YouTube when you have time and check out his style, but just in case you don’t, here’s the text of the best part…

That’s what love is. Love is not selfish and self-centered. Love can be sacrificial, and in so doing, becomes redemptive. And that way of unselfish, sacrificial, redemptive love changes lives, and it can change this world.

“If you don’t believe me, just stop and imagine. Think and imagine a world where love is the way.”

Imagine our homes and families where love is the way. Imagine neighborhoods and communities where love is the way.

Imagine governments and nations where love is the way. Imagine business and commerce where this love is the way.

Imagine this tired old world where love is the way. When love is the way – unselfish, sacrificial, redemptive.

When love is the way, then no child will go to bed hungry in this world ever again.

When love is the way, we will let justice roll down like a mighty stream and righteousness like an ever-flowing brook.

When love is the way, poverty will become history. When love is the way, the earth will be a sanctuary.

When love is the way, we will lay down our swords and shields, down by the riverside, to study war no more.

When love is the way, there’s plenty good room – plenty good room – for all of God’s children.

“Because when love is the way, we actually treat each other, well… like we are actually family.

When love is the way, we know that God is the source of us all, and we are brothers and sisters, children of God.

My brothers and sisters, that’s a new heaven, a new earth, a new world, a new human family.

And let me tell you something, old Solomon was right in the Old Testament: that’s fire.

He goes on to talk about how man’s “discovery” of fire changed, and continues to change, the world.  He concludes:

And he then went on to say that, if humanity ever captures the energy of love – it will be the second time in history that we have discovered fire.

Dr King was right: we must discover love – the redemptive power of love. And when we do that, we will make of this old world, a new world.

My brother, my sister, God love you, God bless you, and may God hold us all in those almighty hands of love.

How about a Big Amen on that?  All you need is Love.  Love is All you need.  Spread it all around…

Peace

 

 

Happy Mothers Day !!

My Mom has been gone for 15+ years now, and I have become accustomed to carrying her in my heart, consulting her in my mind, and frequently saying out loud, “can you believe this shit?”  I treasure the love we shared and what I learned from her.  But I mostly think of Myself on this day…and the old children that I mothered.

I am so proud of my kids.  Each of them has become a fine person, a good spouse and parent, hard-working and kind. They are witty, and wise.  They are truly my best friends and loyal confidants.  They indulge me in my Disney obsession, and take care of my tech questions with minimal eye-rolling.  They respect Life.  They are  Trustworthy, Loyal, Helpful, Friendly, Courteous, Kind, Obedient, Cheerful, Thrifty, Brave, Clean, and Reverent.  They are funny as hell and there’s nothing more precious than when we laugh together.     

While searching youtube for some appropriate Disney Mom’s Day material to share, I got on a crying jag…not because I’m sad, but because being a Mom is deeply joyful and music can turn on the faucet of tears..

Get out your tissues and see if you agree.  (I picked a short one, in hopes you’ll actually click on it.)

Have a Great Mother’s Day!

Peace

 

Prophesying the Derby

It’s that Magical Time of Year — Derby fever has been raging in Louisville, KY for 2 weeks and we now have the field set and can make bets beginning tomorrow.

It looks as though Eville is going to have decent weather on Saturday with a.m. clouds/p.m. sun and highs in the 70’s,  in stark contrast to my report in  2013 Coldest Derby Ever  

I shared with you in  2015 – It’s Derby Week-end how befuddled I become when betting The Run for the Roses, but I’m a little less confused than usual this year.  (2015 was the American Pharoah year, so the decision seems easy, now.)

In 2016, I was visiting NYC on Derby Week-end…

Eliza’s Derby Hat 2016 NYC

Around these parts, we have a Real Kentucky Thoroughbred Racetrack, Ellis Park, 10 miles away, but Manhattan lacks such amenities.  I discovered TwinSpires, the Official online wagering site of Churchill Downs that year.  We went down to the wire getting our bets made, then put on our hats and sipped bourbon.

I do not have enough money to gamble, and usually stick with $2 bets, except for the Derby, where I make $3 bets. but more of them than any other race.  There are just so damn many horses!!

This year, only 5 of 21 horses have current odds below 10-1:  Justify at 3-1;  Mendelsohn at 5-1; Magnum Moon at 6-1; Bolt d’Oro and Audible, both 8-1. Amazingly, 13 entries have odds at 20-1 to 50-1!!!

It actually is a strong field:  Todd Pletcher trained 4; Bob Baffert trained 2; Aiden O’Brien has been traveling the world winning with Mendelsohn; and Dale Romans has 2 entries.

Saturday morning showers in Louisville may leave a dampened track, though nothing like the mud we had last year.

So what’s a girl to do?  Last year, I left all my Triple Crown winnings in the TS account, so I have that to bet.  And bet it I will.

I have been following the  Prep Races, and early on fell in love with Good Magic.  Not long after, Magnum Moon came along and stole my heart.  I’ve been set on those 2 for a couple of months now, even as the race card filled up with horses with higher BRIS numbers and flashier wins.  The other day, Justify kicked ass at the Santa Anita Derby and caught my eye, and he’s now the favorite.

This might be a good year to bet a longshot.  For the last 5 years, the favorite has won, but for 20 (!!) years before 2012 the favorite lost.  Remember Giacomo winning at 50-1 in 2005?  There are some good horses in that 20-1 to 50-1 group that could surprise us.  Noble Indy comes from a fine family of horses, is a Pletcher horse, and is currently at 30-1.  Salomini has been persistently placing in the preps, and is trained by Baffert, also at 30-1.

So there’s a little info for strategery whenst wagering.  Say you don’t believe in “gambling”?  It’s a Horse Race, the Greatest Two Minutes in Sports (some say).  You don’t have to put out any money to cheer on your favorite horse(s) while wearing a fancy hat and drinking a minty beverage.  Enjoy!

And in case you’re conflicted over Derby Day falling on Cinco de Mayo, here’s a solution…

Cinco de Derby

My hat is ready for donning…  After Olivia’s piano recital, we’ll head over to Ellis and join the festivities.  See you at the track!

P.S.  I know, I know I didn’t say anything about the Oaks.  There needs to be a major movement to get the fillies the proper attention, but I’m not feeling it this year.  Maybe Chocolate Martini?  Oh, Just pick a number…

Peace

 

 

Weekly Report

One of the cardinal rules of blogging, if you want to keep a sustained readership, is to post with regularity.  So here we are, one week since my last check-in.  Hi, howya doin?

I was Wrong when I said Spring had Really arrived last week.  Just last night we had Another Frost…   It’s okay, though, because this really is it.  Tonight the lows are in the mid-40’s and then the lows rise into the 50s — highs up to 80!

All this garden talk goes over on my gardening blog, and I hope you’re not too bored with pictures of plants and beds of dirt.  It is an obsession this time of year, I admit.

Olivia and Samantha came over Saturday to play with us while their M&D saw the new Avengers movie.  We played croquet (the only game I rule) and walked in the woods, picking wildflowers and making wishes before we blew the dandelion puffs away.  I didn’t take any pictures, dang it.  Here’s one from our visit to B&N the other day…

This morning we visited the Antique and Collectible Show at the 4H, soaking up the sun, murmuring at the high prices.  I did get some $1 containers, the light styrofoam-like things, nothing antique.   We came away with some ideas, too.

 

The next few weeks are busy, especially The First Saturday in May — KY Derby Day #144.  Olivia has a piano concert at 2pm that day, and if the weather stays nice Casey and I will head over to Ellis to watch the Run for the Roses.  Don’t forget it’s also Cinco de Mayo… decisions, decisions…  Margaritas? Mint Juleps?  …or both…

Olivia turns 10 on the 9th and has a birthday party on the 12th, Mothers Day is the 13th.  In between, we’ll get the gardens planted, finally.

I’ve been studying the horses for the Derby, and I’ll let you know my conclusions in time to make a bet.

Peace

Sprung

Spring is here!!  I’ve been outside—OUTSIDE!!!  For so long I have sat by the fire, imagining what all I would do as soon as it warmed up…  I was almost overwhelmed, wanting to do everything!!  But I have calmed down…

I planted seeds:  peas, carrots, beets, radishes, lettuce, spinach, and mustard.  My zucchini and yellow squash have been set out.  Cilantro has been planted.  Casey planted the asparagus.

We had to move the 4 leftover rose bushes out of the veggie garden where they had spent the winter.   I moved around some daisies in the north garden to make room,  and it’s rather full now.

 The lawn was a sea of flowers, but the dandelions were all puff-balls, so we managed to mow just before the rains.

 

My containers are ready, and I’m going to fill them with lavender, rosemary, basil, and whatever I come up with, while it rains the next couple of days.  (it’s a Warm Rain, not even Snain, nowhere close to snow)

I’m just giddy… Welcome, glad Spring!

 

Peace

 

 

 

I’ve been trying to write something all morning.  Well, I have actually written a lot of words that didn’t go together and so I threw them away.  I simply have nothing to say…

well, except for this…

Peace

Driving into Springtime

Swing out
To Lake Nostalgia
Route 5 to Laughing Pines
Get off at Funway West
Drive into Springtime
Drive into Springtime

That’s the chorus of the song that’s been stuck in my head all week:  Springtime by Donald Fagan, from his album Kamakiriad.  It’s a regular seasonal song since 1993.

Still killing time waiting for a sustained show of warmer weather, on Monday I drove over to Southern Illinois (a very different beast than Northern Illinois) to visit with a couple of oldsters that I love.

Uncle Jr. is doing great the nursing home–even received the “Resident of the Month” award!

A new stop on the tour is Mt. Carmel, where a wonderful lady who was one of my mom’s best friends has been ensconced in an assisted living apartment for about a year now.  I “lost” her for a while last winter when she had a couple of bouts of pneumonia that resulted in her move.  She is happy enough in her new digs and as beautiful as ever at 90-years-young…

It was a decent day for a drive, but I had just started in with a bout of cold?allergies?  We’ll just call it an influx of Snot.  I had to cancel my dental appointment for Tuesday and am living on Allegra now with no end in sight.  >sigh<

I’ve been haunting my local plant markets, especially Ronnie’s (Variety Village), despairing that they would never return.  Thursday a.m. I arrived as they were unloading the trucks!!!   In addition to visiting with my seasonal friends, I bought up herbs, some perennials, and seeds.  I got 7 kinds of basil! some I’ve never heard of!

Friday morning we shopped at Hillside Gardens, where I prefer to get my veggies, and picked up some great-looking tomatoes and peppers to babysit.  Puh-leeze, I know I can’t plant them for a month, but I keep them on the porch and talk to them until the time arrives.  I can, however, plant some peas, and am ready…

Casey moved around and re-organized our “shed” (it’s the old 1931 garage-without-a-driveway) so that I could have a sunny, new spot for my gardening supplies… (windows still need to be washed)

Even though I feel like hell, I’ve got a much better Attitude of Gratitude for the blooms and buds that pay no attention to the weatherman, greeting me as I walk into the woods.  Wearing my workboots is thrilling!

The temps have plunged again, and we’re still keeping the fire going in the fireplace.  We’ll meet up with the Jrs at Denny’s and come back here to play this afternoon.

This week I’m going to get those peas planted, and those roses moved, and the daisies, and bring in the new soil for the garden beds so I can get the spinach and lettuce and beets and on and on.

For now, I just keep “Springtime” rolling through my mind…

Peace