Family

Belated Happy Father’s Day From the Holy City, Charleston, SC


Dearest Readers:

I do apologize for not writing a post about Father’s Day yesterday. If you read my posts on a regular basis, you will note, I live in the Holy City, Charleston, SC. Last week was truly a week of grief and shock for us, and when I heard about the church shootings early Thursday morning, I was truly in shock. I ask – “How? How does this happen in a Holy City.

Since the nine murders, I have worked on the events for a news publication and I have prayed…and PRAYED…and PRAYED. Some people believe that prayers do not help us, but I beg to differ. Prayer has always gotten me through the tough, shocking times in life.

Today, I do hope those who celebrated Father’s Day (and I am one of them) shared words of love, and gratitude for fathers. My father died in 1999; nevertheless, I still grieve for him and miss him. I can hear his melodious voice and I laugh when I hear it. Words cannot express how much I miss him. I am thankful that he and I were able to work through difficult times and not look back and on Father’s Day, we spent time together, appreciating and loving the bonding we shared.

So, to all of you who are Fathers, today I would like to say thank you. Thank you for being who you are and thank you for moving through the difficult times while remembering it is the little things in life that make a difference. Little things – like seeing a child born. Not exactly a little thing, but the precious gift of birth is something significant that changes our lives. Little things like awakening in the morning to see a new day…a bright sunshine…the gift of life and love.

I plan to write more in my blog about Charleston – at a later date – after I can decipher my notes and research. For now, I am proud that our Holy City is rising higher than the tallest church steeple to embrace what happened while teaching the world that we are a proud city – not filled with hatred…anger…and such bigotry. We will stand tall and survive.

Belated Father’s Day wishes to all of our precious fathers. Thank you for helping our city to move forward with pride…acceptance…love…and compassion.

If you would like to help the Holy City heal, USA TODAY shared this information:

“People can help in these ways:

• Donate to the Mother Emanuel Hope Fund at any Wells Fargo branch across the USA.

• Send a check to Mother Emanuel Hope Fund, c/o City of Charleston, P.O. Box 304, Charleston, S.C. 29402.

• Text ‘prayforcharleston’ to 843-606-5995 or go to http://www.bidr.co/prayforcharleston to donate by credit card.

• Send a check to Lowcountry Ministries, a South Carolina nonprofit that also has established a fund to help Emanuel and support projects for youth and vulnerable populations, at Lowcountry Ministries — the Rev. Pinckney Fund, c/o The Palmetto Project, 6296 Rivers Ave. #100, North Charleston, S.C. 29406.

• Donate to the Pinckney Fund online at palmettoproject.org via major credit card or PayPal.

• Give directly to Emanuel AME Church. You can donate online via major credit card or PayPal.

Donations to both Lowcountry Ministries and Emanuel AME Church are tax deductible.”

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2015/06/18/charleston-church-shooting-donations/28959731/

Losing Weight, Weight Watchers

“WEIGHT GAIN IS NOT A PERMANENT CONDITION!’


Dearest Readers:

Today is my day to face the music…stop beating myself up…and move on with life! Why? Simple. Today is my weigh-in day at Weight Watchers. Early this morning, I felt nervous. Embarrassed…All of those negative feelings we all feel whenever we gain weight.

I confess – I have used my ‘get out of jail free’ card several times lately at Weight Watchers. You know the card – if you are a member of Weight Watchers. The infamous “No Weigh In” card. Effective today, I am not using it; after all, it isn’t helping me.

Today, when I walked into the meeting, I dreaded facing the music. After the weigh-in, the wonderful receptionist who always shares encouragement with all of us said to me — It’s OK. “Weight gain is NOT a permanent condition.”

How true! She reminded me of the weight I have lost, along with all of the inches that appear to be falling off from my body and I smiled.

“You’re so right,” I smiled. “That’s a wonderful quote you’ve shared and I shall use it wisely, reminding me that my joining Weight Watchers was a lifetime, and lifestyle, change for me.

Last weekend I was bad. Very BAD! At a graduation, I reminded myself to eat wisely and carefully — and then — I committed the ultimate Weight Watchers sin. I ate cake. I could not resist it. I requested a large piece of cake. I ate every bite. Later, I went back for a second piece. I did not work out. I did not climb my friends upstairs stairs like I promised myself I would. I did not work out at all before going to bed. As I stated, I was bad.

On the way home, you guessed it — we stopped at fast food restaurants – and I was bad again. That night after arriving home, my husband and I went out for pizza. I ate every bite. I realized my life was spinning out of control. I watched an episode of “My 600 Pound Life,” http://www.tlc.com/tv-shows/my-600-lb-life/ recognizing  I would never allow myself to become one of those reality show participants. At first, I wanted to write ‘reality show freaks’ – but I am trying to be positive here. I am trying to be happy and stop beating myself up.

Why Do We Beat Ourselves Up?

My actions got me thinking… If you are a regular reader of my blog, you know my life as a child was filled with unhappiness. When I graduated from high school, my parents were divorced – sitting as far away from each other as they possibly could. When my name was called – no one cheered. After the graduation ceremony, I came home with my diploma. My mother never said she was proud of me. There wasn’t a celebration. No cake. No gifts – with the exception of a few relatives who gave me graduation gifts. While watching the pride and love in my friend’s eyes when she spoke of her daughter at graduation and at the graduation party, my mind rushed back to my childhood and how different I wish it was.

So today is a wake-up call for me. A day for me to graduate from my childhood and to move forward with my life. Today is a new day. A great day to strive for happiness, instead of sadness. After all, negative thoughts only feed negativity. Positive thoughts teach us happiness, renewal, and motivation. Today is my day to move forward — to STOP beating myself up and to track all of my food intake – just like Weight Watchers teaches us.

And now, I must take that first step to have a good day. Thank you, Weight Watchers. Today is a new day. “Weight gain is NOT a permanent condition!”

 

 

Uncategorized

Attention All Twins…


PRESS RELEASE – FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
From Twins Days Inc., Twinsburg, Ohio, through McKenzie News Service

Twins Days Festival: The Largest Annual Gathering of Twins in the World, Twinsburg, Ohio

Holding the Guinness Book of World Records for the “Largest Annual Gathering of Twins in the World,” the theme of this 40th Festival will be “Twins Days: Times 2 Remember.”

Twinsburg, Ohio, June 8, 2015 – The 2015 Twins Days Festival (www.twinsdays.org) will be held August 8th and 9th at Glenn Chamberlain Park, 10270 Ravenna Road, Twinsburg, Ohio. This annual international event is recorded as the “Largest Annual Gathering of Twins in the World” by the Guinness Book of World Records. Inaugurated in 1976, this year celebrates the Twins Days 40th festival, with an appropriate time machine theme “Twins Days: Times 2 Remember” which looks back over the past festivals and forward to the future of many more.

Located 25 miles southeast of Cleveland, Twinsburg plays host to thousands of twins from all over the world. Non-twins are also welcome.

Saturday morning kicks off with the “Double Take” parade. Activities during the day will include twin’s contests, twin’s talent show; twins research area, twin’s group photo, entertainment, arts & crafts and twin related/sponsored booths, small amusement rides and games, and a spectacular fireworks show. Also available are food concessions and official souvenirs Saturday and Sunday.

Sunday morning’s activities include the Twins Days 5K Run and Fun Walk benefiting the Melanoma Education Initiative. During the day the activities will be the same as Saturday’s with the exception of the parade and fireworks.

Admission to the grounds for the public, non-registered twins, and families of registered twins is $4.00/person per day (children 5 & under can enter for free. Admission is also free to Twinsburg residents, with proof of residency).

Friday’s events are for twins and their families only. Saturday and Sunday events begin at 9:00 am. Twins Registration Fee: $15/set when registering in advance ($20/set on-site). Triplets/Quads/Quints: Triplets: $22.50 per set, Quadruplets: $30.00 per set, Quintuplets: $37.50 per set. Twins are encouraged to register at the festival to be able to participate in the twins related activities and to be included in the official count. Registration forms can be downloaded from the Twins Days web site at http://www.twinsdays.org. The twins can also register at the festival site.

For more information visit http://www.twinsdays.org.

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The Top 10 Workout Songs for June 2015


FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:

The Top 10 Workout Songs for June 2015

Fort Wayne, IN – June 2, 2015 – Familiarity and freshness are key ingredients in a workout playlist. While songs from the former category provide reliable inspiration, those in the latter bring the dynamism. Thankfully, June’s top workout tracks feature a healthy balance of both.
Starting on the familiar side of things, you’ll find chart returns from perennial favorites Ricky Martin and Britney Spears. On the fresh tip, you’ll find breakout hits from newer acts like Shawn Mendes and Rachel Platten. Lastly, in the best of both worlds department, you’ll find new remixes of recent hits from Sia and Carly Rae Jepsen.
If you’re current playlist sounds a little dated, there are plenty of single tracks here that will liven it up. Alternatively, if you’re looking for a more ambitious change, this month’s top 10 tracks would make for a balanced and invigorating playlist just as they are. Like a good run, it doesn’t matter which route you choose—so long as you pick one and get going.
Here’s the full list, according to votes placed at Run Hundred–the web’s most popular workout music blog.
Sia – Elastic Heart (Kid Arkade Extended Mix) – 128 BPM

DJ Snake & AlunaGeorge – You Know You Want It – 99 BPM

Britney Spears & Iggy Azalea – Pretty Girls – 104 BPM

Shawn Mendes – Something Big – 113 BPM

Martin Garrix & Usher – Don’t Look Down – 129 BPM

A-Trak & Andrew Wyatt – Push – 126 BPM

Carly Rae Jepsen – I Really Like You (Blasterjaxx Remix) – 129 BPM

Rachel Platten – Fight Song – 89 BPM

Steve Aoki, Chris Lake, Tujamo & Kid Ink – Delirious (Boneless) – 128 BPM

Ricky Martin & Pitbull – Mr. Put It Down – 129 BPM

To find more workout songs, folks can check out the free database at RunHundred.com. Visitors can browse the song selections there by genre, tempo, and era—to find the music that best fits with their particular workout routine.

Contact:
Chris Lawhorn
Run Hundred
Email: mail@runhundred.com

Chattahoochee Child, Family

Dearest Readers:

Another portion of “Chattahoochee Child…”

 

The thermostat hanging on the porch read 100 degrees that Wednesday afternoon. I wiped beads of perspiration from my forehead. If only Grammy had given me permission to go to the swimming pool. The only way I kept cool was by wrapping ice cubes in a wash cloth, placing them on my head. I fanned myself with the morning newspaper. Papa and Grammy read it before going to the mill. I was alone, sitting on the porch when I heard sirens screaming in the distance.

Someone must’ve gotten too hot at the mill. The sirens were getting closer now. I peered over the porch, anxious to see if I could see them. The mill was only a block away from my Grammy and Papa’s wooden house. The sirens sounded as if they were approaching my direction. I stepped onto the sidewalk. A crowd of people blocked my view, so I moved closer, hoping no one would tell Grammy and Papa I was off the porch.

“What’s going on?” I heard a woman dressed in Bibb overalls say.

“It’s Barney. It’s bad,” a wrinkled man with a bald head answered.

I moved closer, reaching the man, I tugged at his overalls.

He glanced down at me, surprised to see a ten-year-old being so inquisitive.

“What happened to Barney? He’s my Papa’s best friend.”

“Ain’t you Jesse’s granddaughter?”

I nodded yes. The sirens screamed in my ears now. A Bibb City police car. An ambulance. Another siren screamed behind the two cars that had just passed. The coroner.

Someone gasped. I heard a woman say, “Oh. No. Here comes the coroner.”

I couldn’t help wondering what a coroner was. We hadn’t had that word on vocabulary test in school. Whatever a coroner was, I knew it meant something bad was happening, just from watching the movements and sighs of the curious crowds of Bibb City.

Barney lived two blocks away from Papa’s house. I could walk to it. I looked around for the wrinkled man who knew me as Jesse’s granddaughter. I hoped he wouldn’t see me crossing the street. I knew if I got caught crossing the street, Grammy would give me another tongue lashing and more restrictions. I lived on restrictions at Grammy’s house.

I jumped down to the curb, looked both ways, deciding to cross the road. The sirens were quiet now. I couldn’t see Barney’s house for the swarm of people standing around it. People were talking saying the coroner’s inside.

     “What happened?”

“Did Barney have another heart attack?”

I knew from all the whispering that my Papa’s friend was in some kind of trouble.

The wrinkled, bald headed man who knew me spoke up, “Barney got canned today. They sent him home. I saw him after it happened. He probably ended it.”

“Ended what?” I asked, the curiosity of a child visualizing a collection of thoughts inside my head. None of the thoughts were healthy. Somehow I knew, ‘ended it’ was not good news.

The coroner stepped outside, lighting a cigarette on the porch. A Bibb City police officer joined him. A few minutes later, two men carrying a stretcher left the house. One of the men tugged at the black cloth covering the stretcher. Something was under the black cloth. Please God, don’t let it be Barney.

A lady rushed from the house. I recognized her as Miss Evelyn, Barney’s wife. She was crying, ringing her hands, screaming at the stretcher. “Please don’t take him to the morgue…Just take him to the hospital. He’ll be fine…”

I made a mental note to look up the words coroner and morgue in my Webster’s Dictionary. The people standing around were being so careful, whispering softly into each other’s ears. I heard mumbles of ‘sh-hhh-hh…children are around. Don’t say nothing.’

The two men placed the stretcher inside the ambulance, closing the door when Miss Evelyn met them. One of the men attempted to stop her. She jerked her arm free.

“Just leave me alone,” she screamed. “I want to be with Barney.” She touched the ambulance door, and turned towards the crowd.

“Barney wouldn’t listen. I told him not to do it. I begged him to be quiet,” She cried. “He wouldn’t listen to me. He never listens to me, or anyone else. I told him…”

The lady dressed in Bibb overalls reached out to her. “It’s okay. Everything will be all right. The mill takes care of us. You’ll be fine. Let’s go inside.”

“The mill,” Miss Evelyn said. “They’re the ones who did this. The Bibb destroyed him. They killed my husband. To Hell with the Bibb.” She spat on the ground. “I hate that mill. Don’t let the Bibb kill all of you.”

About a crowd of 20 or more mill workers heard Miss Evelyn’s angry words. They mumbled something about her being sick.

“A nervous breakdown.” A woman’s voice said. “She doesn’t know what she’s saying.”

I turned away from the house, anxious to get back to Grammy and Papa’s house. I crossed the street, meeting Papa on the other side.

“What are you doing here, Missy?” He said.

“I-I-, uh, I heard sirens. I wanted to know what happened.”

“You’re always such a nosey kid. Go on. Get on home.”

“Yes, sir.” I said. “Papa, they’re saying bad things about Barney.”

“Barney’s dead,” Papa said. “It don’t matter what they say now. He was trying to do something, and now he’s gone.”

“Miss Evelyn said the mill did it. She said the mill killed Barney. Will they kill you, Papa?”

“Missy, I said go home. Now!” He shouted at me.

When Papa shouted, I dare not ask again. He used switches on my bottom when I misbehaved his commands. Sometimes those switches cut my skin, leaving whelps and deep scratches, hurting me so badly I hated to sit down.

“Yes, sir.” I said. I was worried about my Papa. His face was clenched. His forehead wrinkled. His lips tight. I didn’t like seeing that side of my Papa’s temper.