Saturday, October 29, 2016

Saturday and Breakfast Out

I slept very well again last night. Now I am ready for breakfast but I don't pick up Bob until 7:00.

Missy is ready for her breakfast too. She is being very patient lying here beside me on the floor. I don't know what the day will bring. I have no plans.  I don't even have a book unless the one I ordered comes today. If it doesn't, I will go to the library and check one out.

When we have our big Saturday breakfast, we seldom eat least not a big meal. Sometimes I have some yogurt mid-afternoon.

More later...

We had our usual breakfast and I took Bob home and then went to wash my car. I am charging my Kindle now and if it doesn't get charged pretty soon, I will go to the library to get a book to read.

I took Missy out for a little while but it is still chilly so we came back in. If it warms up this afternoon I will take her back out.


The Kindle is still charging. It may take all day. I went to the library but didn't see anything I wanted to read. Missy is still sleeping here behind me on the daybed.

My daughter's Corgi, Mini, is having her puppies this morning. So far only one male has been born. He looks like his father, Hoover, at this point. Last time she had her first litter, it took an hour between births and she had five. She's much larger now. No telling how many she will have.   When Leslie puts the photo on facebook, I will copy it here.

I sent to my e-mail address and can copy it here now.  Here is number one. They are darling! That's his mom, Mini, standing next to him.

They were an hour apart last time.

After waiting several hours for more pups, my daughter took Mini to the vet for a c section. He delivered 7 more pups for a total of eight. A huge litter.

Here 's the rest.

More later...

I raked leaves for two hours this afternoon and finally just came in to read.
Bob came over shortly before 5:30 to watch the news. he left about 6:00 or so and I took a shower and washed my hair. Then I watched some TV with Missy in my lap....our usual routine. At 8:30, I gave  up and went to bed.

Friday, October 28, 2016

Friday and Neewollah

I slept very well again last night with no pain in my arm or hand. I am hoping that is over now.

Bob will pick me up this morning for exercise class and afterward we will go up to Neewollah, Independence's big week long annual Halloween celebration. We will probably eat up there. I had not planned to go but he asked me and I figured he wanted company so I agreed to go.

I had hoped to bag leaves today but it may be too windy for that. We will see.

I have fed both Missy and myself and am dressed and ready for the day.

More later....

The car my son and daughter-in-law are thinking of buying. It's a 2017 AMG GLE43 Coupe.

Bob and I did go check out Neewollah in Independence and had a philly steak sandwich for lunch with a coke.Then we went by his sister's house so he could see and visit with his nieces. Joyce had already left but we got to visit with Jeannette and her daughter and his sister, Betty, and her son Tommy.

He brought me back home after 1:00. More even later...

I read most of the afternoon.

Bob just came in so I'll get back to this later...

Bob stayed until his regular 7:00 and then went home. I tried to watch TV until 9:00 and posted on facebook until 10:00 in hopes of sleeping well again.

Then Missy and I went to bed.

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Thursday and Housecleaning Day

I slept very well last night and awoke rested. So today is the day I clean my apartment. Bob dropped by after his Lion's Club meeting and so I got a late start on it but by 10:00, I was finished.

I washed both bare floors...the kitchen and the bathroom. Then I vacuumed the carpets. I will dust tomorrow afternoon. In about 15 minutes I will need to start lunch. We are having chicken tenders and potatoes and a veggie and Bob's salad. If I have enough juice left in the skillet, I will make gravy. Then I still have cherry pie dessert for our dessert. I had some left after the game day yesterday.

This afternoon I will read. I hope my new book comes today. If I like it, we will use it for Church School class. It's a newer Brian McLaren book. The Great Spiritual Migration: How the World's Largest Religion Is Seeking a Better Way to Be Christian. His theology makes sense to me.

I need to order Keurig coffees but will wait until after I get my social security on the 9th to do that.

Right now I'd better get busy on lunch. I will get back to this later....

Lunch turned out fine. I cleaned up and after Bob went home I went to the post office and sent off the extra cell phone case that Extreme Cases sent me by mistake.  I ordered what I thought was going to be a soft case to help me hold on to this new phone. It turned out to be exactly like the case on the cell phone ...a hard I sent it back at my own expense. Most of the time, returns are paid for by the selling company. They sent me the second one..exactly like the one I just sent back ...and I told them it was not anything I had ordered since it was identical to the one I did order and I had sent that one back. They wanted me to send this one back at my own expense too....even though I hadn't ordered it. I resisted for a week but today I sent it back to just get it out of my apartment.  Disgusting.

I guess I will read this afternoon. More even later...

I read most of the afternoon. I took Missy out for awhile and also raked some leaves ready to bag them tomorrow.

I worked some more on Sunday's sermon. I hope it's finished now.  I am out of ink in the cartridge. I will remove the black cartridge and hope there's enough colored ink to print awhile longer.

Bob came over after 5:00 and watched TV until 7:00 when he went home. We finished off the ice cream before he left.

Missy and I watched TV until 9:00 when we went to bed. 

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

Exercises Again and Game Day

I slept real well last night. The arm is still not hurting anymore.

Even though it was raining this morning Bob and I went to exercise class. While we were there it stopped raining.  We set up tables for game day and then he brought me home.

I opened a suspicious link by mistake and got a Trojan worm in my system. I shut the system down and Avast evidently took care of it when I rebooted. I ran the program and it did not find it anymore. I usually am a lot more cautious.

In about thirty minutes, I will begin lunch and then afterward I will go on to game day.  We will have the pork tenders with potatoes and perhaps gravy and a veggie and Bob will bring a salad of some kind.  I still have cupcakes for dessert.

That's the plan anyhow.

More later...

Lunch was good and as soon as I got the dishes cleaned up I got my treats together and left for the game day. Bob stayed and did his small load of laundry and locked up afterward.

He will be back later to watch the news and whatever else might be on TV. Tonight is Nature and Nova on PBS and I always like to watch that.

I went to game day and and afterward stopped by the courthouse to say "hello" to the office staff where I used to work. I sure like all those gals in there and miss that filing and scanning work. 

More even later... I need to go out to Walmart and get some cranberry juice and Chai Latte for my coffee maker.

I got my groceries and came home to read my mail. Unfortunately I got a notice of a raise in premium from Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Kansas. It will be $284.84 in 2017. Then when you add $105 for Medicare every month you have a huge bill for healthcare...especially if you're trying to get by on your social security each month. That's $389.84 each month just for healthcare. I don't have the prescription drug part..thank goodness,  or I wouldn't be able to get by at all. I take one med that is $10.00 for three months and another that is $44.64 for three months.  


Anyhow, Bob came by at 5:00 or so to read the paper and watch the news. He left at 7:00 and Missy and I watched Nature and Nova on PBS, my favorite channel.

Then about 9:30, I went to bed.

Monday, October 24, 2016

Tuesday and Hair Day.

This will be another very busy day.

First I will pick up Bob about 8:20 and take him with me to Independence and drop him off at his sister Betty's home for his visit. I will go on to Cathy's shop and get my hair done and cut. After she finishes that, I will go over to Juanita's and balance her checkbook. Then I will pick up Bob at Betty's and we will go have lunch. After lunch I want to go to the Social Security office. I have some questions about my social security. I hope I can get in without an appointment.

By then I should be tired. We will come back to Coffeyville and I will take Bob home.

More later...

I tuned up my computer with free Glary Utilities. Years ago, PC World magazine recommended that free utility and it keeps my computer running smoothly most of the time.  It runs well when I use that utility on a fairly regular basis. I use the free Glary Utility too. You can buy a more comprehensive edition but the free one has worked for me for at least fifteen years.

Bob and I ate at Big Cheese again and we had the small pizza this time too. We usually have a mini each but discovered last time that the small one fills us up better.

More later... 

I read this afternoon and later Bob came over and we watched  the news and an old episode of the Big Bang Theory. He went home after awhile and I took my bath and watched PBS. At 9:30, I went home.

Next Sunday's Sermon

“Welcome the Outcast”
October 30, 2016
Margie Miller
Luke 19: 1-10
Zacchaeus the Tax Collector
19 Jesus entered Jericho and was passing through. A man was there by the name of Zacchaeus; he was a chief tax collector and was wealthy. He wanted to see who Jesus was, but because he was short he could not see over the crowd. So he ran ahead and climbed a sycamore-fig tree to see him, since Jesus was coming that way.

When Jesus reached the spot, he looked up and said to him, “Zacchaeus, come down immediately. I must stay at your house today.” So he came down at once and welcomed him gladly.

All the people saw this and began to mutter, “He has gone to be the guest of a sinner.”

But Zacchaeus stood up and said to the Lord, “Look, Lord! Here and now I give half of my possessions to the poor, and if I have cheated anybody out of anything, I will pay back four times the amount.”

Jesus said to him, “Today salvation has come to this house, because this man, too, is a son of Abraham. 10 For the Son of Man came to seek and to save the lost.”

This passage is best understood by viewing its content in the overall context.  To understand the background information helps us interpret the meaning of the passage and is a description of the Jewish tax collectors, with whom Jesus was speaking and teaching when interrupted by the grumbling and complaining of the Pharisees concerning these men.

Tax collectors mentioned in the context were employed by the Roman government.   They were wealthy men, usually Jewish, who contracted with the Roman government to be responsible for the taxes of a particular district of the imperial Roman state.  These tax collectors would often be backed by military force.

By sharp contrast, the tax collectors to which the New Testament refers were employed by the Romans to do the actual collecting of monies in the restricted areas where they lived.  These men were Jews, very wealthy, who could be seen in the Temple.  And they were undoubtedly familiar to the people from whom they collected taxes.

These tax collectors gathered several different types of taxes.  Rome levied upon the Jews a land tax, a poll tax, even a tax for the operation of the Temple.  The distinctions between the kinds of rule, which a given province received, dictated what type of taxes its people had to pay.  Some provinces, like Galilee, were not under an imposing form of government and therefore the taxes collected stayed in the province, instead of being forwarded to the royal treasury at Rome. 

The tax collectors were despised by their fellow Jews, especially the Pharisees and scribes, whose pockets were frequently pinched because they owned land.  Tax collectors were castigated by them as “especially wicked sinners.. probably because they were allowed to gather more than the government required and then to pocket the excess amount.  John the Baptist dealt with this issue when he urged tax collectors to gather no more money than they should (Luke 3:12-13).  Also, tax collectors were hated because their fellow countrymen viewed them as a para-government, private militia, working for Rome, whom they considered to be foreign oppressor of the Jewish people.

Jesus, however, set a new precedent among the Jews by accepting and associating with the tax collectors.  He ate with them (Mark 2:16), showed them mercy and compassion (Luke 19:9), and he even chose a tax collector (Matthew) as one of His twelve disciples (Matthew 9:9).  Jesus fellowshipped impartially with the tax collectors, and he contrasted their willingness to repent of their sins to the arrogance and pompous attitudes of the self-righteous Pharisees and scribes.

This scripture, the story of Zacchaeus, and is one of the many stories that speak to the mission Jesus proclaimed….welcoming what were considered “outsiders”. In Luke 4: 18 – 19, the central theme is that Jesus is the one who is sent to express God’s salvation for all people. And the storyteller of Luke was not speaking of an “otherworld” salvation. He was talking about salvaging and saving people on the earth at the time of Jesus and in his culture. Jesus’ mission was directed to the poor, women, sick people and all other “outsiders” who needed to hear about God’s love and acceptance of them.  

In this experience, we see that Jesus is focusing on one who is an outcast among his own people….a hated tax collector. It is a story that focuses on and reflects one of our church’s enduring principles: “Worth of All Persons”, In this story, redemption and salvation transform the life of Zacchaeus and release in him a radical generosity for the welfare of others. 

As the chief tax collector Zacchaeus was likely one of the most despised people in the village. He was despised because he profited by collecting taxes from the Jews for the Roman government. Jews who worked for the invaders, the occupying Romans, were viewed as traitors. Tax collectors often took advantage of the citizenry in ways that had a crushing impact on their lives and continued the cycle of poverty because they added taxes to the basic Roman tax to line their own pockets. 

In his enthusiasm to meet Jesus, Zacchaeus put his self-image at risk as he ran ahead of the crowd and climbed a tree. In that culture, grown men did not run or climb trees. So why was he willing to make a spectacle of himself? 

Zacchaeus was obviously yearning for something more in his life than what he had. He had to be lonely and isolated. The story reached a critical point of tension when both Zacchaeus and Jesus made themselves vulnerable to one other when Jesus made a public statement that he would go to Zacchaeus’ home. Everyone there must have gasped! That was a powerful moment when once again Jesus himself lived his mission as he engaged in a relationship with one who was considered a sinner and an outsider.

In this expression of love and acceptance, Zacchaeus encountered the divine redemption and grace that Jesus reflected. The wealthy but empty life Zacchaeus lived was transformed and a new expression of radical generosity was born. The one who contributed to oppressing the Jews was now living generously and engaging in acts of social justice for the poor. His life-changing discovery of a relationship with Jesus broke open Zacchaeus’ heart and genuine generosity flowed. 

The custom of providing voluntary compensation in that culture was to return the original amount plus 20%. Compulsory compensation called for doubling the original amount. But Zacchaeus would do more. He would return four times the original amount. Instead of giving ten percent, Zacchaeus offers 50% of his wealth. 

This story is a good example of how Jesus’ mission made it possible for what were considered “outsiders”  to experience healing, wholeness, and a new way of belonging. The story challenges the social mindset that having money is what makes one happy, or is a sign of success. What makes one happy is all about feeling God’s grace and acceptance, through the actions of loving people… which, in turn… makes it possible for all “outsiders” to discover their fullest potential in the mission of Jesus. 

When we live from this place of growing awareness of God in our lives, our generosity is released and we can join in the mission Jesus illustrated for us.  And when all people discover who they really are and their true potential, then salvation in all of its dimensions ---in the present life and in their social and spiritual lives… have the potential to become real.

Justice for those who are poor and disadvantaged was the mission Zacchaeus committed his life to… as Jesus lived his mission into the heart of Zacchaeus. 

So, how has our personal encounter with God released in us a radical generosity that we can extend to others? We can do much in little ways. Visiting a nursing home to bring some sense of community into the lives of those who live there is one way some do it.  Sharing our friendship with those who are lonely may be another. Mowing the yard of someone who is unable to do it for themselves would be another. Sharing food or dessert with a lonely person could be another. There are hundreds of ways to welcome what we may think of as an “outcast” of our society. 

Our congregation has evidently decided that the mission of Jesus is the mission we want to adopt. We often look for new ways to be servants for others. Our upcoming shoebox project is just one, our ongoing food basket is another. Adopting a single mother and her children at Christmas time can be another. Buying school supplies for low income children in August is another of our projects. And those we choose to share with are not always outcasts. Sometimes the smallest generosity and acceptance is greatly appreciated. 

One type of outcast we sometimes encounter as a church is the gay member. Many people consider them to be sinners instead of simply of a different orientation.  The LDS church has considered them worthy only of hell and their families as well. Ad Diane explained last Sunday, our World Church has set up a group for “seekers” to welcome them into our congregations. We are attempting to be a church to welcome the outcasts of our day. 
Our World Church is struggling to make their budget as the membership ages and shrinks. But after hurricane Matthew hit Haiti, they chose to send thousands of dollars to help the people of Haiti to recover. During the 2007 flood here in Coffeyville, right in the midst of one of the worst recessions in our history, the church sent us several thousand dollars to help those who had been flooded out to deal with their recovery. And sometimes the outcast is only an outcast in their own eyes.  Perhaps, at times, we have been the “outcast” ourselves. 

We are a welcoming congregation. Let us look for ways to follow Jesus’ example and welcome everyone….even the outcast.  

There are big ways we can extend ourselves to others and there are small ways to illustrate our desire to be even more welcoming. We only need to look around us for opportunities.  

Monday and Exercises Again

I slept really well last night. I only woke up once so I am well rested.  I have fed Missy and myself our breakfasts and even been out briefly.  It's a little too chilly yet. I will take her out again after it warms up a bit....perhaps after exercise class. 

 Right now I had better get to the market. ...More later... I bought some pork tenders for lunch.

I took Bob to exercise class and while I was there Leslie called and wanted to know if I wanted to go to Bartlesville with her.  Bob arranged a ride home with another person and I went home and drove over and met Leslie at Tyro to go with her to Bartlesville.

If I can work up the energy, I will rake the east side of my apartment and bag up those leaves. The center looks so nice after Steve mowed yesterday. I had raked up and bagged the leaves there before he mowed and trimmed.

 We will have the pork tenders on Wednesday.

When we got to Bartlesville we walked the mall and she asked me if I would like to have a pedicure. I had never had a pedicure so I  let her schedule me one too. I intended to pay for it. I had even stopped by the bank on my way home to get some money. But she paid for the pedicure.  Then she asked me where I wanted to eat lunch and I suggested McAlister's. So we ate there and she also bought my lunch. Wow! What a day! The pedicure was fantastic. It was a lot more then just "painting my toenails". You got a thorough foot massage, leg massage,  trimming and cleaning of the cuticle, a chair that gave you a thorough back rub while the pedicure was going on. It was terrific! I may have to blow myself to another pedicure sometime.

Then we went to Lowe's and she bought some Weed and Feed for the lawn. And she bought a carpet remnant for the puppies that Mini is about to have...any day now....when they move out to the garden shed.  They are Corgis.  Last time she had 5 and this time she may have more because the kids both say she is huge. She's not due until Halloween but they don't think she can possible make it that long.

I got home about 2:00.

I spent the next couple of hours raking leaves and trimming the lavender.  I didn't make much of a dent in it but at least I did some of it. There are still many leaves to rake in the future when the rest of these trees lose their leaves. I will try to stay ahead of it if possible.

About 4:00, I went over to Wayne's and sat out on his porch and visited awhile. H and Tiny, his dog, were enjoying the lovely day. Wayne says he is 97.  He's quite a guy!

Bob came over to watch the news at 5:00 and so I came on back home. He left at 6:00 and soon after I took my bath and put my PJs on. I sat with Missy for awhile but I just couldn't keep my eyes open.  I played some solitaire..actually free-cell... until 9:00 when I went to bed. Missy was ready too.  What a big day!

Tomorrow will be big too.

Sunday, October 23, 2016

A Very Busy Sunday

I didn't sleep as well last night. I worried about having enough food for our basket dinner this noon at church. We have six good cooks out today. There are two in Wichita and one in Oklahoma. Both of them on the same day. We are scrambling to have enough food. We have guests coming from Chanute and a guest speaker.  I have goulash, a veggie and my cherry pie cake dessert.

I finally got up at 5:00 and got ready for the day. I dressed and baked my dessert. Then I packed the things I will need to take to the dinner in sacks.  I'm as ready as I can be.  After the dinner and cleanup, I will do my weekly newsletters and later this evening we will have the Living the Questions group at Karan's home. I will need to pick up Gary at 6:40.

Our guest minister is going to talk to us during Church School class about the Seekers group the World Church has begun to make the LDS who are leaving their church welcome with us. We come from the same beginning background in 1830 but our church separated from them when the polygamy and their esoteric teachings were disclosed after just 13 years.  Then we changed our name in 2000 to Community of Christ to separate even further from their movement. Unfortunately their teachings are an embarrassment to our people. We are a mission minded people.The LDS are excommunicating their Gay members and also not offering a baby blessing for their children...those who have children. That is just terrible! People cannot choose their orientation. 

More later...

The services went fine. She did a good job.  Vic did show up and since he was my guest, I sat with him. I don't know that he will come back but we all invited him. He had a dinner engagement  already so he did not stay for the dinner.

When I got home, I unloaded my leftovers and did the congregational newsletters. Then later I read my new Time magazine. Bob came over shortly after 5:00 and we watched the rest of the game he had been watching.  I left at 6:35 to pick up Gary. Bob decided his back hurt too badly to go so he went home to watch 60 minutes on his own TV. There he could put on his PJs and be comfortable.  I suggested he take some ibuprofen for his back.

We had a rather small attendance at Living the Questions. I learned that Marilyn was in the hospital in Denver with a staph infection and Joyce did not attend. Richard and Mona were there, Gary and I were there. Howard and Judy were there too. With Karan as hostess, that was all of us.

I took Gary back to his home after the meeting was over at 8:40. We stopped at Dollar General for a couple of things he needed on the way.  The group will meet again on November 13th.

I took my bath when I got home and got ready for bed. I may go straight to bed. It's been a huge day.