Saturday, 22 October 2011

I'll send you a rainbow

Thank you for all your kind comments, left on my last post, or sent via Facebook, text or Royal Mail.

It has been a long week, but we are all doing well. My Dad and I are very practical people and have found it good to be able to get on with sorting the physical things like forms, certificates banks and such. He has been to our house every night for a meal and a lot of chess has been played! Jacob finally beat him for the first time last night.

I had work commitments that kept me busy on Thursday and Friday and on the whole we all feel a great sense of relief that Mum now has some peace. There are still quiet moments, when tears are shed we have had laughter too, I can sense that time will heal all wounds.

I did have a video that kept coming to my mind. Its an old church production that is somewhat outdated in style but not message. I finally tracked it down on YouTube and would like to share it. I watched it a lot with people when I was a missionary for the church. It is somewhat more fitting to me now, than it was then







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Tuesday, 18 October 2011

Mum


I am standing by the seashore.
A ship at my side spreads her white sails to the morning breeze
and starts for the blue ocean.
She is an object of beauty and strength,
and I stand and watch until at last she hangs like a peck of white cloud
just where the sun and sky come down to mingle with each other.
Then someone at my side says :
- 'There she goes!

Gone where?
Gone from my sight - that is all.

She is just as large in mast and hull and spar
as she was when she left my side
and just as able to bear her load of living freight
to the places of destination.
Her diminished size is in me, not in her.

And just at the moment when someone at my side says:
- 'There she goes! ',
there are other eyes watching her coming,
and other voices ready to take up the glad shout :
- 'Here she comes!'

-----

This afternoon my Mum passed away, her passing comes as a relief to us all, she had suffered enough. We are grateful to the staff at St Ann's Hospice who have cared for her so well this last few days. My Dad, wife and I were at her bedside to be with her as she passed through the veil. We're thankful for the knowledge that just like the ship spoken of above, she will be welcomed by loving family on the other side.

Parable of immortality by Henry Van Dyke - 1852 - 1933 





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Saturday, 15 October 2011

Friends

My Dad must be on a lot of peoples email lists ! He gets lots of emails with jokes or funny pictures attached anyway. Most days I get at least one such email forwarded from him, most of which get archived away for future blogging use. This week I particularly liked one of the emails he sent me.

Just to prove that birds of a feather don't always flock together, and that in fact we can be friends with people from different backgrounds, beliefs or environments. I present a lesson in making friends from the animal kingdom.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Or as the email was entitled "You don't have to look like a friend to be a friend"


Any stick out to you?? I like the last one, the caption could be the dog saying....

"Don't mess with my lamb!"

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Saturday, 8 October 2011

Choices

 

At the end of Castaway, Chuck Noland (Tom Hanks) stands at a crossroads. 
The start of the film had shown him in a good place in life, everything seemed to be just how he wanted. After an hour of movie you realise that his life has changed dramatically. With nothing more than the volley ball Wilson to motivate him, Chuck makes his way back to civilisation, only to find life there has moved on and left him. His one final spur, is to deliver the last package he had saved to from the crashed FedEx flight. Because the house at the address is empty, he leaves the package at the door with a note saying that the package had saved his life. The final scene, standing at the crossroads. A woman passing by in a pickup truck stops to explain where each road leads. As she drives away, Chuck notices the emblem on her trucks tailgate is the one on the parcel. Looking down each road the camera focuses on his face, as he looks toward the departing truck.

Life has a habit of presenting us with choices, some good some bad. Sometimes like Chuck we are dealt a hand we wouldn't choose or even wish upon another. But that's how life goes. The test is not in what we have to endure, but rather in how we face it.

In Mid August I shared a post "Hope is sometimes all we have", it was about my Mum, who had spent time in Manchester Royal Infirmary and then been moved to The Christie after a diagnosis of Ovarian Cancer. Many of you were kind enough to leave comments of support, which were uplifting and appreciated by both my Dad and I.

Since August I think my Mum has only spent a week at home. The Chemotherapy has not been kind to her sensitive stomach and  each day eating has been a challenge. This as you can imagine has been very stressful for all and really weakened her. 
On Thursday the care team met and have made some decisions based on outcomes and quality of life, these decisions mark the end of trying to fight the cancer. It is felt by the consultants that if anything, the treatment is now doing more harm than good. After discussing options, my mum has decided to go home, perhaps in more ways than one. Time scales are hard to determine, but the medical team assure us that without the conflict caused by the chemotherapy on the painkillers, they will be able to make her much more comfortable than she has been, for the next few weeks, possibly months.

So the connection between my family life and the opening film? Choices, you can always make them. If you are not free to choose what life deals out, you are always free to choose how you respond. Am I upset, yes. As a guy that cant recall spilling many tears in his adult life I have driven a few miles with wet cheeks this last few days. Am I bitter, no. Hope still springs eternal, there may not be much of mortality left for us to share, but I can make it count. I am blessed to have a faith that tells me this is not all there is, but that may be the subject of a sadder post in weeks to come. 

I wonder why I am writing this, its therapeutic to form your thoughts into the written word.  Its these events in life that make us what we are, they are not to be hidden, even if writing them is more cowardly than speaking them.

So what choices do we make today?  Mine are to live for today, act on promptings and don't put off a good deed until tomorrow.

I have made some choices already, regarding blogging, I have more things to share than I currently do. Some of my un-blogged thoughts are of a more spiritual nature, which is not what everyone reads blogs to see. So I have created a shiny new blog. It will relate to an evening class I teach about the Book of Mormon but will be my thoughts, rather than those of the class. This makes my blog portfolio more simple. So now you can choose which part of me you want to share.

Oldham Seminary

Written for my class of 14-18 year old's. Wonderful youth, who are becoming like my second family. The class itself is about the Old Testament, the blog is about the daily lessons, the students and the seminary program of the church in general.


RJRDaydreamer

You Are here! RJRDaydreamer is still my main blog, humour, pondering, and daily musing. What blogging is all about !


These Plates

NEW! A strange title, but it relates to a scripture that describes the dividing of historical records into "these" and "those". "These" being defined as of a spiritual nature.


RJR Originals

Not really a blog, but a Blogspot format for my Business website.


So they you have it, my life divided and put into orderly compartments, thank you for reading this. As always a blogger without a reader is nothing. You are welcome to follow one or all of the above, whatever your own background. 



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Sunday, 2 October 2011

General Conference



In April of this year, I took part in the A-Z blogging challenge. It just so happened that the letter C fell around the time of the 181st Annual General Conference of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints.

As a member of that church, or a Mormon, I decided that C was for Conference Centre. Interestingly the post C is for Conference Centre is my 3rd most viewed of all time, currently standing at 1,295. Part of that, is people hitting Google images, looking for pictures of the conference centre.

Here we are 6  months later, realising that time flies by far quicker than it ever used to!! As church conferences are Semi-Annual, it is conference time again.

I don't often blog about overtly religious things, my blogger profile does however suggest that many of my outlooks on life are influenced by my LDS beliefs and general experiences. One exception was when I mentioned in August, that I also author a blog for the Seminary class I teach. Which is why my posts on here are not quite as frequent as they were.

Many people consider Religion and Politics to be taboo subjects, but I have found most bloggers to be pretty open minded about things.

So what is General Conference, its basically a chance for the leadership of the church to speak globally to the members over a weekend period. The conference centre holds around 21,000 people but that just scratches the surface. We for example watched conference at our local Stake Centre via a satellite link, in fact the 2 hour sessions of conference are available all around the world to millions of church members, via either satellite or internet.


The purpose is to inspire, motivate and uplift. It is not just about what you hear said, attending conference in a spirit of wanting to learn often brings you personal promptings or insights that help to direct your life. The sessions of conference are available to read, download or watch for the next 6 months HERE

During a conference session this morning I kept thinking about a video I have, It was never mentioned, but I couldn't get it out of my mind. An LDS photographer by the name of Mark Mabry created some excellent artistic images depicting the life of the Saviour. The video is a slide show of these images with an excellent musical soundtrack. Although from an LDS artist I think the pictures are outstanding for anyone with a Christian background. View large screen, with the volume up high and enjoy.


No doubt with my random thoughts, we will be back to dogs or funnies next post, till then enjoy life, you only get the one try!


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Saturday, 1 October 2011

Dogs


A guy is driving around the back woods of Montana and he sees a sign in front of a broken down shanty-style house:

'Talking Dog For Sale'

He rings the bell and the owner appears and tells him the dog is in the backyard.

The guy goes into the backyard and sees a nice looking Labrador retriever sitting there.

'You talk?' he asks.

'Yep,' the Lab replies.

After the guy recovers from the shock of hearing a dog talk, he says 'So, what's your story?

'The Lab looks up and says, 'Well, I discovered that I could talk when I was pretty young.. I wanted to help the government, so I told the CIA. In no time at all they had me jetting from country to country, sitting in rooms with spies and world leaders, because no one figured a dog would be eavesdropping.'

'I was one of their most valuable spies for eight years running... But the jetting around really tired me out,and I knew I wasn't getting any younger so I decided to settle down. I signed up for a job at the airport to do some undercover security, wandering near suspicious characters and listening in. I uncovered some incredible dealings and was awarded a batch of medals.'

'I got married, had a mess of puppies, and now I'm just retired.'

The guy is amazed. He goes back in and asks the owner what he wants for the dog.

'Ten dollars,' the guy says.

'Ten dollars? This dog is amazing! Why on earth are you selling him so cheap?'

'Because he's a liar. He's never been out of the yard'

---------------------------


And while we are on the subject of clever dogs ....




thanks Dad for emails with both these great stories

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