Warm Southern Breeze

"… there is no such thing as nothing."

Posts Tagged ‘family’

Forgiveness Made Real In Boston

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Thursday, August 17, 2017

Woodcut image of the 1834 burning of the Ursuline Convent in Charlestown, Massachusetts.

In 1834, the Irish Catholics of Boston were ready to avenge the ransacking and burning of an Ursuline convent by a Protestant mob. (See also: http://www.celebrateboston.com/crime/ursuline-convent-destruction.htm) But on August 17 of that year, Bishop Benedict Fenwick preached a message of forgiveness in the cathedral and effectively stopped any retribution and bloodshed. Matthew’s gospel today (Matthew 18:21—19:1) challenges us to forgive unconditionally. It is possible. Forgiveness works. We all have someone we could forgive today. It can make a real difference.

—//—

21Then Peter came to Jesus and asked, “Lord, how many times shall I forgive my brother or sister who sins against me? Up to seven times?”

22Jesus answered, Read the rest of this entry »

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Refraining From Negative Personal Criticism

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Saturday, August 12, 2017

Do you ever negatively criticize people? Perhaps even, those closest to you – meaning loved ones, and dear friends?

Why is it that such seems to be the case, more often, than not?

To refrain from negatively criticizing people is a loving decision that I’ve made which respects people.

It doesn’t mean that I always agree with their decisions, but it allows Read the rest of this entry »

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Bitter Criticism Is Like Cyanide To Relationships

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Most people muddle through life without ever thinking about what they do, why they respond the way they do, how they can become better people, improve their emotional stability, change they way they respond, or increase their understanding of others or their relationships with them.

Why?

It’s not as if people are born as experts on themselves or human relationships. And merely “being oneself” is no guarantee of anything remotely resembling self understanding.

It’s important to talk about how we feel, and what we think without negative criticism from each other. Open lines of communication are imperative to maintaining and nourishing relationships. Communication must be ongoing, open, honest, and without strident tones and condemnation.

It would seem reasonable then, to seek understanding not only about oneself, but about others, and relationships, and to endeavor to improve oneself and one’s relationships with others… especially and particularly familial and spousal relationships. Could it be that bilateral lack of such effort – aka LAZINESS – is responsible for the increase in divorce rates in America? For lack of genuine emotional intimacy? Lack of sexual intimacy? Lack of proper parenting?

People are not born smart. We’re born stupid. It’s a choice to remain that way.

—//—

“People tend to criticize their spouse most loudly in the area where they themselves have the deepest emotional need.”
– Gary Chapman

It’s Not Me, It’s You: Why Criticism Poisons Happy Marriages By Drs. Les and Leslie Parrott 

Criticism is an insidious behavior that comes into marriage and eats at the core of our identity. Few things will shut down intimacy quite like being criticized or controlled, and it is capable of immobilizing your emotional health and personal growth, especially within your relationship.

Nobody enjoys being criticized or picked apart, but it’s especially painful when your spouse – your soul mate – is the one being critical and hurtful to you. It’s demoralizing to be treated this way when you’re doing your best to make a contribution and add value to your relationship… but you get criticized instead of appreciated. Criticism can easily break a heart, and that’s a terrible place to be in your marriage.

What makes a person critical?

We often refer to critical people as “control freaks” or “high-maintenance people.” Control freaks are compelled to Read the rest of this entry »

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Be A Model

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Saints Joachim and Anne, Parents of the Virgin Mary

Remember when you first realized that you were becoming like your mother? Or turning out to be just like your father? Kids do tend to grow up to be like their parents. Just like Mary’s parents, Joachim and Anne, were the good ground from which the seed of goodness grew, we can Read the rest of this entry »

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We’re All Family Here

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, July 16, 2017

One of the little miracles of faith is its power to make strangers into family. People who might never have known or even chosen to be with one another find themselves together in Read the rest of this entry »

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Playing Piano With Grandmother In The Rain

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, July 5, 2017

As a child and youth – even later in life – when visiting my maternal grandmother, I would often play her baby grand piano.

As a child, when a summer thunderstorm would approach, she would tell me to stop playing, because, as she said, lightning would strike the piano because of the metal wires in it. She falsely supposed it to be an attractive force of some type.

Of course, at the time, I thought such an idea to be preposterously absurd… and still do. And in retrospect, I saw my obedience, then rebellion, and later obsequiousness, more as a reflection of my love to, and respect for her.

Naturally, as a youth, I attempted to reason with her by asking her if she’d ever heard of, or knew anyone who’d ever had their piano struck by lightning while being played during a thunderstorm, and she said Read the rest of this entry »

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Bring Peace To Family Feuds

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Keeping peace in a family isn’t always easy. But imagine the difficulty when relatives get into a fight and they command armies. Such was the problem Saint Elizabeth faced 670 years ago when war broke out between her son, the king of Portugal, and her grandson, the king of Castille. But all it took was Read the rest of this entry »

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Beat the Heat with Buttermilk Popsicles?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, June 12, 2017

A good and longtime friend shared recently about making buttermilk popsicles at home with family, using a recipe presumably which came from Steel City Pops, a trendy nouveau foodery in Birmingham, AL. And giving credit where credit is due, Alabama has some mighty fine eateries, and an amazing wealth in it’s diversity of food. As evidence of that fact, Chef Frank Stitt, owner of Birmingham restaurants Highlands Bar and Grill, Bottega Restaurant, and Chez Fonfon has been on the James Beard Foundation Award‘s radar for quite some time, and most recently, NPR recognized the excellent oysters produced by Murder Point Oysters using farming methods in that Bayou La Batre, Alabama Gulf Coast town, which were also feted by Chef Emeril Lagasse. Alabama food is a literal treasure of gastronomic proportion. And it’s not just limited to the holiest of holies… barbecue.
(👉Get your Alabama Barbecue Trail app here!👈😋)

Now, I confess an aversion to buttermilk except in cooking. And the reason, of course, is that I’ve tried it. And not just once. In fact, I recollect as a youth visiting with relatives in Read the rest of this entry »

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Batteries Not Included

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, May 14, 2017

Needing some batteries – AAA & 9v – for some handheld electronic gizmos, I stopped in at the nearby Batteries+Plus store.

While checking out, I asked the clerk if sales were strong today, and remarked, “Moms need batteries too!”

With a wink and a nod, he knowingly acknowledged innuendo in my remark with a smile and a laugh.

“You know,” I said, “we never think of our mothers as sexual beings, and yet…” Read the rest of this entry »

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Can @realDonaldTrump this?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, November 13, 2016

Sunday, November 13, 2016
Day 5: The standard has been set… by a Black man.

According to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) – the huge government bureaucracy established by Executive Order 13228 under President George W. Bush on October 8, 2001 – and it’s subsidiary bureaucracy the Immigrations and Customs Enforcement (ICE), from 2009-2015, President Barack Obama has deported over 2.5 Million illegal immigrants… more than the George W. Bush administration.

Statistics for this year (2016) are not ready, because… the year hasn’t ended. Duh!
So, there are more to be added to the “we kicked you out because you broke the law” rolls.

Really? Obama deported more illegals than Bush?

Yup.

He’s deported so many illegals that he’s been nicknamed the “Deporter in Chief.”

In fact, he’s deported MORE than any other administration in history.

MORE than Reagan.

MORE than George H.W. Bush.

MORE than Clinton.

MORE than Carter.

In fact… MORE than ALL OF THEM COMBINED!

Oh yeah.

Ouch… that’s gotta’ smart!

The Office of Immigration Statistics (a subsidiary of the Department of Homeland Security), says Read the rest of this entry »

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I had a Late Term #Abortion.

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, October 21, 2016

I HAD A LATE TERM ABORTION.
IT IS NOTHING LIKE DESCRIBED BY TRUMP.
PLEASE DON’T BASE YOUR VOTE ON THE FEAR MONGERING HE IS DOING.
PLEASE READ MY EXPERIENCE:

I had to have a late term abortion. It was the worst moment in my life. What made it even worse was the State of Utah had made it illegal. I had one dead twin. The other had severe Spina Bifida, and would only have lived with life support, in great pain, for a few days.

by Alyson Draper
October 19 at 8:46pm · Midway, UT
used with permission

I lay on the hospital floor, bawling hysterically, for twelve hours, waiting for an ethics committee of the health care corporation to Read the rest of this entry »

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Homeless Veterans: A Rational Perspective

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, February 19, 2016

Let’s get some perspective.

The U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development’s January 2012 annual point-in-time count found that 633,782 people across the United States were homeless, 57,849 of which were veterans.

  

However, Read the rest of this entry »

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Meteorology, Mama & Baby -or- How I Was Befriended By Luck

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, August 10, 2015

It was Easter Sunday, 2010, and unknown to me, dumb luck had befriended me.

Pure dumb luck.

Even scientists believe in it.

In 1996, Duncan C. Blanchard, a meteorological researcher then affiliated with the State University of New York at Albany, authored a scientific paper entitled Serendipity, Scientific Discovery, and Project Cirrus” published in the Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society in which he cited Project Cirrus (1947-52), a period and project of research from which “many serendipitous discoveries and inventions were made, opening up areas of research still being pursued today.”

Blanchard’s work was cited a decade later in 2006 by David M. Schultz, who was then affiliated with the Cooperative Institute for Mesoscale Meteorological Studies, University of Oklahoma, Norman, Oklahoma, and the NOAA/National Severe Storms Laboratory, Norman, Oklahoma in a research paper entitled The Mysteries of Mammatus Clouds: Observations and Formation Mechanisms. In it he wrote that what little we know about mammatus clouds was, because of their nature, “obtained largely through serendipitous opportunities.”

In other words, what little we know about the clouds (so named after human breasts because of their appearance), has been obtained by pure dumb luck – although, being prepared, and being in the right place at the right time does account for something.

In conversation recently with a dear, and longtime friend, I shared about Read the rest of this entry »

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What are taxes for? Who should pay them? Should you pay more, or less?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Friday, July 31, 2015

Kroger Tools for Schools Drive sign

Kroger Tools for Schools Drive sign

It infuriates me to see signs & posters like these, because THAT is what taxes are for!

And, if there aren’t enough taxes collected from the wealthy (and obviously, there aren’t), then we see “drives” and other collection points like this.

Just this evening, in conversation with my neighbor, she shared with me about how her co-worker – a young, single mother – recently confided in her, and said that she didn’t earn enough money to make ends meet – to pay the rent, keep the lights turned on, and feed her family and that she regularly has to go to a local food pantry (which itself often runs out of food because the need is so great) to augment her meager ability to purchase food – and that she, herself, didn’t have supper because she chose to feed her children, instead.

My neighbor remarked, Read the rest of this entry »

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All You Need Is Love

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, June 8, 2015

I recollect, a few years ago, having gone with a dear friend to the apartment where her former husband lived.

He had died alone.

D’Angelo (not his real name) was a retired Army NCO, whom had volunteered for service. He was genuinely a “squared away” soldier, and rose to the rank of First Sergeant (E-8), which rank is politely nicknamed “Top,” because, aside from Sergeant Major which is also an E-8 position, it is the highest rank and position a NCO can obtain.

His generosity was well-known, and his humility, honesty and genuine love for his fellow man was evident throughout his life. And though he was a good man with many admirable character qualities, a congenial fellow, well liked – even loved – by many, it seemed he never could win the battle over the bottle.

What little I knew of him from others’ reports and my own limited interaction with him, he was an honorable family man. And yet, Read the rest of this entry »

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On the Bleeding Edge of the Front Line

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, June 7, 2015

Uncle Dean never spoke to his blood relatives about his WWII service – even though they inquired – which was for them, perplexing, and they eventually stopped asking. However, he voluntarily spoke at length about it with me.

Perhaps it was because we shared a common bond of military service, I don’t know. They never understood why he didn’t talk about his experience. His Purple Hearts, Bronze and Silver Stars, and other medals of valor that Read the rest of this entry »

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The U.S. Economy In 6 Simple Pictures

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Picture #1:

It’s fairly explanatory. American corporations are making profits hand over fist. They’re making more profit now, than before the “Great Recession.” In fact, they’re making more than DOUBLE from their lowest during that time.

Corporate Profits After Tax

Corporate Profits After Tax

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Read the rest of this entry »

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Cheap Beer And Chili

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Monday, November 10, 2014

It’s getting much cooler – chili, in fact…

Earlier, I had purchased ingredients to make chili. Among them, cheap beer. For me, that would be Pabst Blue Ribbon.

There were a couple left over from making that delicious batch of comfort food, which was well worth the extra effort. So, not recollecting to have ever tried a PBR – at least not in many years – I opened one up.

Wow…

First sip of a PBR in a ~very~ long time.

It was a 16oz “Tall Boy,” and so, not having a larger capacity glass, I poured, and drank it from a jar.

Naturally, your nose goes in the opening as you put it to your mouth for that first sip, and you breathe in some of the brew’s smell.

It was like I was Read the rest of this entry »

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How Successful Is It To Drug Test Public Assistance Welfare Recipients?

Posted by Warm Southern Breeze on Sunday, October 5, 2014

UPDATE: 07February2016
http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/politics/2016/02/07/drug-testing-benefits-tennessee-yields-only-65-positives/79776756/

Since implementation of a law began July 1, 2014, the Tennessee Department of Human Services found only 65 out of 39,121 people who applied for a cash assistance program known as “Families First in Tennessee,” tested positive for illegal substances, or medicines for which they had no prescription.

That’s less than 1% of all applicants who tested positive.

That information was provided provided to The Tennessean by the Tennessee DHR.

An extra 116 refused to participate in an initial drug screening questionnaire, which automatically disqualified them for benefits.

The average monthly benefit of the cash assistance program was $165 per month in December – or $1,980 per year. If they otherwise would have qualified to have received assistance, the total value of the benefit to the 116 people who refused to take the test would have been $230,000 annually – if they had otherwise qualified for benefits.

Since the law began, 609 people have been asked to take a drug test: 544 tested negative, and 65 tested positive. Of those who tested positive, 40 were referred for substance abuse evaluation, and 13 enrolled in a drug treatment facility or recovery support group as a condition of receiving benefits.

The total cost to Tennessee taxpayers so far has been $23,592.

There’s a meme which circulates on FaceBook and presumably, in other places as well, which appears similarly as this:

Drug Test Public Assistance Recipients

Drug Test Public Assistance Recipients Meme

Honestly, the idea is a failure.

But you’d rarely – if ever – hear about it’s failures.

Florida was the first state to tread that path. What they learned was surprising. And then, the law was struck down by a Federal court. The states that embark upon Florida’s path will be wa$ting their citizen$ taxe$.

Only 2.6% of Florida applicants failed the drug test.

“Because the Florida law requires that applicants who pass the test be reimbursed for the cost, an average of $30, the cost to the state was $118,140. This is more than would have been paid out in benefits to the people who failed the test. As a result, the testing cost the government an extra $45,780.”

The purported savings in Florida’s program will be negligible after administrative costs and reimbursements for the drug tests are taken into account.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/18/us/no-savings-found-in-florida-welfare-drug-tests.html

But it wasn’t limited to Florida. Read the rest of this entry »

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