Archive for April, 2016

PostHeaderIcon MY PLATE IS FULL

By Vernalee
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If your plate is full, you are very busy, have numerous commitments; have a lot of work to do or a lot of problems to deal with; in other words, to use the other colloquial expression, “You’ve got a lot on your plate.”
With that being the case, there is no room for dealing with other folks’ “stuff” that is inconsequential! Enough is enough! Sometimes, it’s best that they “eat their own” by dealing with their own issues / problems. How about that for a change? Yummy! It’s a two way street. Let them deal with their problems; you, with yours; me, with mine. Now that everyone is dealing with their own concerns, keep the momentum going. Fair play is fair game. Don’t relapse; don’t burden other people with your problems; don’t load your plate with theirs. Everyone solving their own problems; what a novel thought! It’s amazing what you will learn when you roll up your sleeves rather than roll out your problems to others. Here’s “Food for thought” – for your full plate! How refreshing it is to be a problem solver than a problem shuffler! I’ll drink (and eat) to that!
Photo credit: www.richandsarahchristenden.bogspot.com

PostHeaderIcon A WATCHED POT NEVER BOILS

By Vernalee
imageA watched pot never boils is an aged old expression that underscores that something that you are waiting for will not happen while you are concentrating on it.
The process appears to go more slowly while we wait which suggests that our time may be better spent engaging in other activities.
It’s a significant difference between the watched pot and the unattended one.
An unattended pot boils over and catches fire in 1.7 seconds.
Finding the balance between watching and doing is crucial. We can’t afford to just idly watch; neither can we afford the negative circumstances that accompany inattentiveness. If it takes someone “lighting a fire under us,” so be it! Our time is too precious to waste. Time will not wait. It moves on … as should we!
Photo credit: www.furtherfield.org

PostHeaderIcon GIRL TALK: A GENTLEMAN AND A GOOD MAN …

By Vernalee
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Stop confusing the terms, gentleman and good man! By definition, a gentleman is defined as a man who is courteous and honorable; a man who treats other people in a proper and polite manner; and a man of high social status. A good man, by definition, has a variable definition depending on the person. In general, a good man is referred to by his attributes of treatment to others, particularly – the woman in his life.
The Top 15 Signs of a Good Man are as follow:
1. A good man never lets you forget how much he loves you.
2. A good man always supports you.
3. A good man will inspire you.
4. A good man will work to gain your trust.
5. A good man will always make you feel beautiful.
6. A good man will make you feel safe.
7. A good man does the little things.
8. A good man never crosses the line.
9. A good man is always trying to improve himself.
10. A good man understands that actions speak louder than words.
11. A good man will open up to you.
12. A good man will always be honest with you.
13. A good man will make you feel comfortable being honest.
14. A good man will never be abusive.
15. A good man will stand by you.
Those are the 15 signs that HuffPost Women had to say. Let’s dig further.
The Bible has countless scriptures on what a Man and a Good Man should do and how he should behave. Who knows better than the Father? I counted about 60 plus verses. “Be watchful, stand firm in the faith, act like men, be strong. Let all that you do be done in love” is one of them. Of course, as with most subjects, we always put our interpretative spin on things.
One of my male friends always said, “A good man anticipates his woman’s needs. She doesn’t have to ask. He knows.” Another lifelong friend from Mississippi swears on her definition of a good man. According to her, “A good man will be my your side; love you, protect you, provide for you, pray with you and for you; will never lie to you; will be there in your time of need to hold your hand; his money is your money; will unselfishly treat you like a million dollars with change to spare.” Another wonderful friend equates, “A good man will put the “R” in romance.” Selfishness and laziness never enter his space when it comes to his woman. A good man will catch you before you fall. Whatever it takes, he will not let you hit the ground! He will put a ring on that finger because he doesn’t want to lose you to another. How competitive he is to eliminate the competition! Sharing his “squeeze” is not in the cards. A good man recognizes a good woman and does what is necessary to keep her! “What a Man!” There are too many definitions and variables; too many to elaborate.
A good man will take your breath away and make you forget about what you were talking about, or in this case writing about; as I have so elegantly done in this text. Whew!
So, back to the topic of the distinguishing features of a good man and a gentleman. Just because he opens the door, lets you walk in first, pulls out your chair, and puts the napkin in your lap, don’t mean that he is a good man. It means that his Mother taught him the rules of etiquette. A gentleman and a good man are not synonyms. However, a gentleman can be a good man and vice versa, but not necessarily. You catch my drift, right? Admittedly, this is too confusing and complicated ladies when all we want is a mighty good man who gently treat us right! If he is a good man who is “in to you” as a good man would be, he will know precisely what you need, wants, and expects; he will know how to make that happen. Unlike a ball of hot air, he walks the talk! Case closed! Now then, if he is a masculine specimen who believes in the Lord, is easy on the eyes with Herculean muscles, has the provider gene, the romantic swirl, and is as fine as wine, I ain’t mad at him! We’ll gladly take the value added bonuses that undoubtedly increase his goodness! My apologies to the lengthiness of this post, but a good man is worth the stretch!
Photo credit: www.pininterest.com

PostHeaderIcon LEMONADE

By Vernalee
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I once thought that I was the Queen Bee of making the world’s best tasting lemonade until Beyonce stole the show with her “Lemonade!” Yes, it is correct that I am the same age as Tina Knowles Lawson, Beyonce’s Mother. Yes, some may ask why am I listening to sounds of my daughter’s contemporary. I’m glad you asked! I’ll tell you why! Despite its ubiquitous coverage where missing it is hard to do, Beyonce’s “Lemonade” is about the emotional love roller coaster that women who have loved experience and travel. Sooner or later, the ride may shake you up and take you on a journey that goes up slowly and brings you down fast! Scary, right? Beyonce doesn’t reiterate utopia – a world of smooth sailing, but sings about a road of bumps and bruises where beauty, fame, or money won’t exempt; a world where the good may suffer with the bad.
My daughter once told me, “Mommy, Beyonce is my girl! We grew up together. She means to me what Aretha (Franklin) and Tina (Turner) mean to you.” Now, that’s a statement of immense magnitude; the attachment is too uncanny, but the message was clearly understood. Somewhere in time, Beyonce hit a note that told her story like Aretha told mine! I get it! The validity of my daughter’s statement demonstrates the infinite wisdom of a young soul clothed in old folks sense. It clearly shows that it doesn’t matter who is behind the microphone when the story is relatable. If you have loved and not been loved back; felt the pain of infidelity; been affiliated with a cheater who justified why; been hurt and the sting lingered and wouldn’t go away; been publicly embarrassed with shame; reconciled; tried to keep your love and family together only to later have it torn apart; stood before the preacher and pledged your love before all to see the fragments scattered faster than you uttered your vows of forevermore; believed in redemption and forgiveness to give love another try; and …. refuse to give up on love; continue to seek love and happiness; don’t want to grow old alone, et al, you can comprehend and tangibly feel the lyrics in “Lemonade!” It is ageless! It’s the “Chain of fools” where the “loving was just too strong” or the “second handed emotion” of “What’s love got to do with it” of my generation. My maturity woke me up this morning with the alarm that music can tell the story of love and life pleasantries or the lack thereof harmonized to a synchronized lyrical beat. It can ring in your ears the theory that puts into perspective that keeping it together is more significant than tearing it apart. Starting over is always an option, but it is not always easy when your soul is full of bruises caused by the aftermath of pain. Unfortunately, for some of us – eradicating our soulful emotions by calling it quits is the most viable solution. When we don’t or can’t combine the right amount of water and sugar to lemon juice, the taste is bittersweet. Life is no different. Now, I don’t suspect that I will grab a wooden baseball bat and knock out car windows as Beyonce does in her video, but who knows! Love can make us do a many splendid and unpredictable things! Keep your doors locked and your windows down – “just saying!”
Photo credit: www.npr.org

PostHeaderIcon A PRIORITY? AN OPTION? WHICH ARE YOU?

By Vernalee
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Are you a priority or an option?
The late great Maya Angelou gave us lasting wise advice. “Never make someone a priority when all you are to them is an option.”
Priority is defined as being regarded as more important than another;
the fact or condition of being regarded or treated as more important;
the right to take precedence or to proceed before others.
Option is defined as the opportunity or ability to choose something or to choose between two or more things; something that can be chosen: a choice or possibility.
By definition, it goes without asking. Would you rather be regarded as highly important or a mere possibility?
Do you want to be relegated to the back of the line in terms of what’s important to the person that you have made highly important? Maybe the play on words here are tongue twisters, but they are accurate statements of facts.
It doesn’t add up – mathematically, logically, or realistically. Simply stated, it is not wise to make someone first in your life when you are just a number in theirs; thinking that you are in second place maybe just your optimism. When you rank behind everything else; when they get to you whenever, wherever, with whatever, don’t fool yourself. You are an option! If someone isn’t obviously going out of their way to position you to be a priority, it may not mean that they don’t care. It does mean that they don’t care enough to make you as a priority. You cannot reasonably elevate yourself or vacate if you refuse to acknowledge where you are. Take heed. Read the signs. Believe what your eyes behold; it is more than a scintilla of evidence. Actions speak louder than words. Don’t lie in a state of disregarded oblivion. Being anything but first is losing!
Photo credit: www.azquotes.com

PostHeaderIcon A DAY LATE AND A DOLLAR SHORT

By Vernalee
imageThe phrase “A day late and a dollar short” generally means that someone has both missed an opportunity and been inexcusably unprepared for it. A briefer translation of this saying could be “too late and too little.” It can also refer to an unfavorable review of a person’s efforts as poorly timed and too inadequate to make any improvements to a given outcome.
Some folks say it’s never too late, but in all reality … that’s simply is not true.
It’s dangerous to procrastinate assuming that the opportunity will reappear. It is imperative that we “make hay while the sun is shining.”
We should stand prepared to avail ourselves of today’s opportunities. Tomorrow may be too late. A catchy phrase, Terri McMillian wrote a book turned movie featuring it as a title. Though Johnny Mathis’ and Denise Williams’ harmonious collaboration on “Too Much, too little, too late” is one of my favorite tunes, the saying is not. The downward slide is precisely what happens in misguided relationships, both personal and professional; on misdirected career and entrepreneurial pursuits; and in various aspects of failed opportunities in life when we are “a day late and a dollar short!” A day and a dollar are not appreciable amounts of time or money, but if your timing is off or late, the amount or hour don’t matter; you fell “short.” The bottom line is the outcome … which your shortcomings though diminutive may eventually cost you an amount greater than great!
Photo credit: www.connecticutspecialeducationlawyer. com

PostHeaderIcon THE TOP 20 QUOTED SCRIPTURES

By Vernalee
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Many of us have “stand-by” scriptures that we have committed to memory. They strengthen us, uplift us, and carry us through the day and varied circumstances. According to a recent survey, the hereunder Bible verses are the most popular and most quoted verses.These verses inspire, encourage, feed the mind, and heal the soul.
1. 2 Timothy 1:12
…I am not ashamed: for I know whom I have believed, and am persuaded that he is able to keep that which I have committed unto him against that day.
2. Psalms 23:4
Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
3. Acts 2:38
…Repent, and be baptized every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins, and ye shall receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
4. John 13:34
A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
5. Job 12:9
Who knoweth not in all these that the hand of the LORD hath wrought this?
6. 2 Timothy 3:16
All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness:
7. Genesis 8:22
While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.
8. John 1:3
All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made.
9. Proverbs 13:11
Wealth gotten by vanity shall be diminished: but he that gathereth by labour shall increase.
10. Romans 12:2
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.
11. Proverbs 3:5
Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding.
12. Revelation 21:4
And God shall wipe away all tears from their eyes; and there shall be no more death, neither sorrow, nor crying, neither shall there be any more pain: for the former things are passed away.
13. Psalms 62:1
Truly my soul waiteth upon God: from him cometh my salvation. He only is my rock and my salvation; he is my defence; I shall not be greatly moved.
14. 2 Corinthians 12:9
And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.
15. Proverbs 22:6
Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.
16. Matthew 28:18
And Jesus came and spake unto them, saying, All power is given unto me in heaven and in earth.
17. Ecclesiastes 3:1
To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven: A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted.
18. Galatians 6:9
And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.
19. Psalms 119:90
Thy faithfulness is unto all generations: thou hast established the earth, and it abideth.
20. 1 Corinthians 13:13
And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.
Were any of your standby scriptures included in the list? Other than the Lord’s Prayer, Psalms 23, The Lord is my Shepard is the first passage that I committed to memory. It was an elementary school must. I frequently rely on, “I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” The bottom line is to use what works for you. Read the word so that you can hear God talk to you. The dialogue is beautiful! Happy Sunday! God bless!
Photo credit: www.thegrio.com; Source: Kingjamesbibleonline.org

PostHeaderIcon WORK … AN OVERRATED NECESSITY

By Vernalee
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Short and simple, I am trying to invent a replacement for work. My investigative and academic antennas are up. My cognitive processes are working overtime. A commodity that can provide comparable cash flow and economic benefit is my goal. Let’s face it, many of us may enjoy what we do, but if we had a substitute that provided the same economic gain, cash flow, benefits, and level of satisfaction, we would take it with no questions asked. To utilize your time and energies however you desire – is a great thing! If I find the magic formula replacing work, I will send my patented invention to you via electronic transmission. Who knows my travel plans or what continent I will be exploring since work will be a thing of my past!
Photo credit: www.loupdargent.info

PostHeaderIcon PURPLE RAIN

By Vernalee
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April 21 at 10:07 a.m., a musical icon whose depth in music and love for life left this earth. The legendary Prince Rogers Nelson is gone! A creative genius, a singer, a dancer, a musician, a writer, a producer, an actor, a businessman who fought to obtain control of his music & destiny, and above all a caring human being, Prince did it all, and he did it well! I share with you my story of Prince. Perhaps, twenty years ago, my sister Barbara and I went to a concert a CSU’s Wolstein Center. Appearing was Larry Graham, Chaka Khan, and Prince. Now, truth be told, I really went to hear that “One in a million” baritone voiced Larry Graham. He and Chaka opened for Prince. Incredible performances they showcased. Who I initially went to see and who I left memorably in awe and deep admiration for was Prince. I distinctively remember his electrifying performance. He played and danced atop of a shiny white baby grand piano; played drums with a bandana tied across his head; picked his guitar Jimi Hendrix’s style; sang his heart out with a voice that crossed many octave ranges, and showed up and showed out as I, my sister, and the entire audience loved every minute of it. After that concert, I became an eternal fan joining my niece Sharon who had loved and followed Prince since his first hit.
Nominated for 30 Grammy awards, winner of 7; winner of the covenant Academy Award for his musical score, Purple Rain; creator of 5 number one singles; winner of Billboard Awards, and countless others; creator of 39 albums and 140 videos, there was nothing musically that he couldn’t do.
Music is universal and probably the best medium that connects people of all cultures, races, generations, and ages. Prince did just that! He crossed those lines as he touched many, many lives; which is why we feel as if we individually and personally knew him; which is why our grief is so personal.
There are so many Prince tunes that were my favorites.
“Kiss,”
“Let’s Go Crazy,”
“Cream,”
“Batdance,”
“Raspberry Beret,”
“U Got the Look,”
“Purple Rain,”
“The Most Beautiful Girl in the World,”
“Sign ‘O’ the Times,”
“Little Red Corvette,”
“I Wanna be your lover”,
“Diamonds and Pearls,” … The list goes on!
A man who stood only 5’2″ was a giant musically and humanistically.
It is reported that a rainbow appeared around his Paisley Park estate in Chanhassen, Minnesota upon the pronouncement of his death.
Today, as we mourn our Purple Rain genius, we are left with an emptiness, a sadness, and a memory that is symbolically reminiscent of what it sounds like “When Doves Cry!”
Photo credit: www.engadget.com

PostHeaderIcon “RIGHT ON THE MONEY”

By Vernalee
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Right on the money means that it was precise and exactly right. And that is exactly what happened when the United States Treasury decided to put Harriet Tubman on the front of the twenty dollar bill.
Tubman, who was born a slave around 1820, helped hundreds escape to freedom.
She will replace former President Andrew Jackson, a slave owner.
Think about the contrast … a woman who brought slaves to freedom replaces a slave owner ….what a startling and remarkable image whether on a $20 bill or not! Harriet Tubman will be featured on the front of the $20 bill while President Jackson’s image will be relegated to the back.
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We best know Harriet Tubman for her role in smuggling slaves to safety via the Underground Railroad. But her role in the US civil war was just as remarkable.
She operated as a scout for the Union forces, often behind enemy lines, most notably guiding the dramatic armed raid at Combahee Ferry in South Carolina in which three gunboats evaded Confederate positions and liberated more than 700 slaves. Incredible, I’ll say!
For the record, the women last depicted on US bills were former first lady Martha Washington, on the $1 silver certificate from 1891 to 1896, and Native American Pocahontas, in a group photo on the $20 bill from 1865 to 1869.
Harriet Tubman – I along with countless others salute you. It proves that sometimes you have to go “under” to rise to the top!
Photo and Source credit: www.bbc.com

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