March Inventory

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In my part of the world we did not experience Mother Nature as described in this poem. Quite the contrary in fact. We enjoyed some record high March temperatures and the early arrival of many Spring flowers. Unfortunately we had a hard frost this week and the early to arrive magnolia blooms have suffered. It has been fun to hear from so many who have shared their visions on my Spring Sharing post, if you haven’t added your two cents please stop over.

I like to take time each month to summarize where I am toward my goals. I have found this helps to keep me accountable. What I have discovered this month is in writing my goals down I have begun to stretch a bit more. It’s really exciting. To that point I have joined both the walking challenge and the stair climbing challenge over on Stopping the Wind. This has helped me to re-engage with my fitness goal. I have committed to increasing my weekly steps and stairs in April. I invite you to cheer me on. To see my and all other bloggers progress visit the links above.

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I have tried a couple of new things on my blog this month that engaged my readers actively. I invite you to visit my Celebrating Women’s History page for a complete index of some great posts about inspiring women.  I have really enjoyed these interactions and intend to make them regular highlights on my blog. Stay tuned for more…I hope that you will considering writing a guest post(theme to be announced) as well as post a comment to whatever question is posed. This is a great way to share your thoughts and opinions with the world and experience new bloggers. My other blogging accomplishment this month was to reach 500 likes on the Authentic Me. Thanks to all who visit and click the like button.

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Over the month I have discovered many new to me blogs. I find new blogs in a few ways. One is to follow through a comment on another blog, I either like something they have to say OR I simply like the name of the blog. I have also used the WP tags a couple of times. Beware this can really suck you if you’re not careful. It is my hope to begin a regular post of interesting blogs I read. Once I figure out how to best flag a post I will move forward. I have also found many new blogs through my use of Twitter. One of my goals in March has been to build my Twitter account. My efforts have brought me almost 300 new followers. I have been very intentional in building my account and have already learned so many things from those that I follow.twitter

I have not been as active with my new camera as I would have thought but my outings have brought some nice snaps. I have registered for a digital photography course hosted in May by the Appalachian Mountain Club. It is in the beautiful Delaware Water Gap area so I expect plenty of glorious opportunities to snap great pictures. Adding to the pleasure is my husband and two dear friends.

I have continued to maintain an organized home office. I am very pleased with this new habit(3 months now so I can call it a habit). It has helped to keep us on track with our personal financial goals and it looks neat all the time. I appreciate both of these outcomes.

I have not reached my reading goal for the month of March. At least not of the books I am reading/listening to. I certainly spent a lot of time reading blogs and articles for work. I will need to re-evaluate my time budget and determine if I need to adjust. I do know that it is easy to get absorbed in the WWW if not careful. I try to set time limits so that I don’t become consumed.

To my great pleasure I continue to write daily in my personal journal. I have found great encouragement in connecting with my pen and paper each morning. I have even moved the alarm up by 30 minutes to the scary 4:30am time so that I can have more time in prayer and journaling. My Heavenly Father has been faithful to meet me each day I sacrifice myself to get up to be with him.

All in all it has been a wonderful month. I have learned and grown each day…thanks to all of you who share the journey with me. I am excited to discover what He has for me in April.

~Paige

 

From the Eyes of a Six Year Old

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Today’s post is from another guest blogger who I met fairly recently as I reached out in my through my blogging. Please welcome Judy from JayJaysFavorites. I hope that you will click on the link and explore her blog. She is a talented photographer and posts some beautiful photo’s. My personal comments are found at the end of the post. I invite you to join in the discussion.

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The book: “The Story of Ruby Bridges”

  Ruby Bridges was born in Mississippi in 1954, the same year the US made the decision ordering the integration of public schools.

       In 1959, she attended an all-black kindergarten in New Orleans.  In 1960, when Ruby was six, the New Orleans’ public schools were forced to integrate black children into white schools. Ruby took a test and found she was assigned to all-white William Frantz Public School for first grade. Ruby’s mother was for it, but her father was against her going to an all-white elementary school.  Her father felt they were asking for trouble; he thought things would never change and blacks and whites would never be treated as equals.  Her mother convinced her father that, despite the possible risks, they had to send Ruby to William Frantz P.S., not just for their children, but for all black children.

    On November 14, 1960, Ruby and her mother walked into William Frantz school, surrounded by Federal Marshals for protection. Out of six black children assigned to white schools, Ruby would be going to William Frantz alone.

    People shouted, yelled and shook their fists at Ruby and her mother as they walked into school. They carried signs that said: “Keep this school white”.  When Ruby and her mother sat in the principal’s office, Ruby could see them through the window, pointing at her, screaming and pulling their children out of the school.  In all the furor that day, Ruby never got to her classroom. 

The second day, a lovely young white woman met her at the door.  It was Mrs. Henry, her teacher.  They sat side by side working together on lessons every day.  No other children attended William Frantz then, but the line-up of noisy, rude protesters remained almost until the very end of the school year.

    Ruby prayed on her way to school: “Please be with me God, and be with these people too. Forgive them because they don’t know what they are doing.” 

   Ruby Loved Mrs. Henry, because she made learning fun.  The people outside screaming at her were white.  Mrs. Henry was white, but she was so different from them.  She was one of the most loving people Ruby had known.  Ruby said the greatest lesson she learned that year with Mrs. Henry was the lesson Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. taught everyone: “Never judge people by the color of their skin.  God makes each of us unique in ways that go much deeper.”

Ruby finished first grade.  When second grade started, the school was filled with children again.  Ruby was surprised to see a few black children in her second grade class.  The years went by.  Ruby graduated from an integrated high school, then became a travel agent, after studying travel and tourism in business school. She became married and has four children.        

When her youngest brother died in 1993, Ruby helped take care of his daughters, who went to William Frantz Public School. She started volunteering there three days a week, working as a liaison between parents and the school.  When the book “The Story of Ruby Bridges” came out, she was reunited with Mrs. Henry.  Ruby gives speeches on racism and education across the country, and Mrs. Henry often accompanies her.  Ruby says, “School can be a place to bring people together~kids of all races and backgrounds.”

 

Ruby Bridges was a brave and delightful young child, who was wise beyond her years. Ruby walked through horrific chanting and name-calling to get the education she deserved. No child should have to do that. But Ruby is a survivor, a peacemaker and a child who brought other children back to learn together. Today we celebrate the life of Ruby Bridges, and the accomplishments she achieved for education for ALL children.

Over this past month I have read many great stories about women who have helped to shape both our personal and world’s history. The journey has been informative and enlightening. One thing that all of these amazing women have in common is a courageous spirit. I am sure that for some they were shaking on the inside as they stepped out of what the “norm” was to help transform our world. I for one applaud and thank each of them for their willingness and desire to see things differently. I also want to thank each one of you that wrote a guest post for the occasion.

Please visit my Celebrating Women’s History page for a complete list of bloggers and posts that were honored in March.

I welcome and invite your comments, after-all that is what makes the blogging world so fun.

~Paige

Be My Guest- Women’s History Celebration

Today’s blog is written by Colline over at A Potpourri of Thoughts and Experiences. I hope you visit there to read some of her other posts.

 

Here's to Good Women

The place: a bus in Montgomery, Alabama, in the United States

The date: December 1, 1955

The person: Rosa Parks, an African-American woman.

The action: refusal to give up her place for a white woman.

The result: she was arrested for refusing to surrender her seat to a white person.

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The event described above seems foreign to the modern reader. And yet it was not too long ago that women of colour did not have the rights that women today enjoy. Rosa Louise McCauley Parks, a defender of civil rights for African-American women, is known for her refusal to give up her right to choose where to sit. Her defiant action has came to be a symbol in the movement against racial segregation in the United States. Even though at the time of her action she was active in the civil rights movement, she stood up for herself on that day because she was tired of giving into the demands made on her to cede her rights to her white counterparts. She paid the price for her action: with her arrest and conviction by a local court. She also lost her job as a seamstress at a local store.

Her defiant action caused a spark in the civil rights movement that ignited the Montgomery bus boycott. In boycotting the Montgomery public transit system, the users were protesting against the segregation of races in the buses. As most bus riders were from the black population, the protest crippled the Montgomery public transit system financially as they lost most of their ridership. The year long bus boycott began on December 1, 1955 and ended December 20, 1956 with a federal ruling in the case of Browder v. Gayle; a ruling which led to a United States Supreme Court decision declaring the Alabama and Montgomery laws of segregated buses to be unconstitutional. From that time on, riders were not segregated when using the bus system.

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Parks’ action on the bus that day in December 1955 was not the only action she made in her life against racial segregation. She was a firm believer that people of colour should be able to advance in society. When she was arrested, she was the secretary for the Montgomery chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Coloured People. When she moved to Michigan after the incident in Montgomery, she became secretary and receptionist to the African American US representative, John Conyers. She worked with him between the years 1965 to 1988. Her collaboration with civil rights leaders during her life, led her to helping Martin Luther King Jnr become the leader of the civil rights movement.

Rosa Parks was a woman who stood up for what she believed – and she worked towards achieving a vision that she firmly believed in. Undaunted by the obstacles she faced from living in a society that did not acknowledge her as an equal, she continued working for a dream that she shared with other members of the civil rights movement. Women, no matter what race, can see her as an example of a woman who never gives up on her dream, a woman who had the strength of her convictions to stand up for what she believed was right.

What do you see Rosa Parks as an example of? Would you stand up for what you believe in as she did?

When I invited Colline to write a guest blog I did not know who she would select as the featured woman. When I learned it would be Rosa Parks I was delighted. I personally find Rosa’s story inspiring. She was a woman not afraid to take a risk. I read a story about Rosa in the not so long ago past where the author made the statement that Rosa’s action on that bus that day was like her placing her shoulder against a boulder and giving it a huge push. As Colline pointed out in a comment on my recent post Fear vs. Hope risk looks different for each one of us. We need to be willing and ready to step out and take that risk when the trumpet sounds for the action you take may forever go into the history books.

 

© Colline Kook-Chun, 2012

Fear vs. Hope…I know what I want to win!

 

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What meaning does this quote have for you?

To me it speaks of taking risks, daily. I often will say, things don’t change if they don’t change. How is it that we can do the same thing and think that we will get a different result? The risk or “scary” thing will be different for each one of us depending where we are in life and the discovery of our unique authentic self.

I read a post yesterday over at Stopping the Wind that inspired me. While the writing was not her usual style she took a risk and spoke out on a topic that made her anger flare. In her post she calls for a National Day of Change, great idea! We must get to a place where our fear is overrun by our hope. This however is likely to be uncomfortable and probably scary. What is it that you feel called to change? Are you courageous enough to stand up and speak out? Will you take the challenge to do something everyday that scares you?

In my recent reading of a professional blog called Nursetopia I discovered this short but powerful video. I believe if we all took risks daily the world would be a different place.

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Spring Sharing

What did you see today that revealed the change of season? Please share…

Spring

Today marked the first full day of Spring in the northern hemisphere and the first day of fall for all my readers on the other side of the equator.

I saw a sight as I was walking to the hospital that made me stop and pause for a few moments.

There are nice planting on the hospital campus that often attract pretty birds and small animals. As I was approaching the building I noticed a squirrel rolling around in the wood chips much like a dog would roll around. I stopped to watch him. He was rolling and jumping, playing with the small, pliable branches on the tree. Our weather was unusually warm for mid March and it appeared that the little fellow was feeling the need to let loose  for a time. It was so fun to watch.

Did you see or do something that revealed to you that a new season is upon us? Do tell.

 

March Madness

 

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I had a great weekend. My honey arrived home from his week in Guatemala in the wee hours of the night, tired and not feeling completely well, but home. Good to have him home. Saturday had a high potential of being a long day of waiting so I was so happy for the distractions I had lined up.

After a morning that was both productive and reflective I headed out the door to meet my sister for lunch that would be followed by a walk. It was a cloud covered morning but I prayed that the clouds would break so that we could enjoy some sun and warm spring air.

We started at this Thai restaurant. The food was beautifully prepared and served. IMG_0316IMG_0317

As we enjoyed our meals the clouds cleared and the sun came out. We proceeded to our destination down the road a ways called Stony Creek. I asked my sister about the history of the trail but she could not recall any of the facts she had been told.

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The water level was very low at this time of day and made for some interesting pictures.

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Dave was sitting on a bench on the marsh. He is an obvious birder and filled us in on the migratory birding patterns for this area. The Osprey nest awaits the return of the birds which according to Dave will be this week sometime.

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The day was quite warm and perfect for enjoying the shore. I snapped a few more pics before we moved on for the day. That is for the next post.

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