Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Where's The Door Handle ?

While driving I often notice new or different vehicle styles.  This is likely from my days spent processing vehicle addition transactions on auto insurance policies, where I had to be reasonably well-versed on different makes and models of various automobiles.

Today I noticed the rear doors on the 4-door Chevy Sonic and couldn't immediately see the door handles.  At a stop light, when I finally noticed where they were ... I felt like we were in the future.

They are up on the top, back portion of the door, just to the side of the window ... weird, but also kinda cool.

Song Of The Day:
Since it's kind of impossible to link a song from the future to this post, I've decided to go back a few decades and share "Open Your Heart" by Madonna.  There's not really any good songs that come to mind about opening car doors with a unique door handle.


Monday, September 22, 2014

What's Your Favorite Season ?

I wondered this question aloud on my drive to work the other morning, not entirely sure who I was asking it to.  Being alone in the car, I figured it best to answer myself, after all, no one wants to give the silent treatment to themselves.

I began by explaining that I was super excited about Fall or Autumn and explaining several reasons why it must be my favorite season.  The nights are getting cooler.  The house doesn't get as hot during the day.  The colors begin to change on leaves in the trees.  Pesky bugs that take over whole sections of the yard begin to hibernate in their miniature caves.  Weeds miraculously stop growing like, well, weeds.  Fall sports begin, including football and basketball, while baseball starts getting serious.  And for those that love clothes, it's time for an all new wardrobe, or as is the case with most common folk, a rediscovery of the wardrobe you stored away for the summer.  Ahhhh yes, Fall is the best ... except ...

Winter is really cool too, no pun intended.  There's just something about the first snow fall that gets me excited about the upcoming end-of-year months.  Then of course there are the holidays where we give thanks, celebrate our Savior's birth, and ring in the new year with fun and frivolity.  Hot cocoa on a chilly morning and wrapping up in blankets and/or cuddling with a loved one to keep warm.  Even seeing your breath in the air as you scrape ice off car windows can be downright delightful.  Yeah, I guess Winter might be my favorite ... however ...

Spring is absolutely amazing!  After the eventual doldrums of a long, hard winter set in, Spring comes roaring in, bringing with it new growth and eternal hope for brighter days.  That first unseasonably warm day when you can travel without a jacket feels like a miracle.  It is impossible not to notice that the days are getting longer and even if you hate cleaning, the 'Spring' kind always feels great to get done.  I really love that first sweep out the garage of each year and the kids love that their bikes are rescued from their hanging hooks above the cars.  Spring sure scores a lot of points ... but ...

That brings us back to Summer, and doggone it if those dog days aren't something spectacular!  Break out the swim gear and the suntan lotion.  Get ready to feel the warmth of the sun on your face as you ride bikes or take leisurely strolls in the late but still lit evening hours.  Simple pleasures like a glass of refreshing ice water or laying in the fresh cut grass of the front lawn remind us that life is just wonderful.  And the backyard grilling of hamburgers and hot dogs coupled with the excitement of fireworks, often all season long, are unmatched.

So, at length, I came to this conclusion:  my favorite season is whatever season we are in OR whatever season is coming up very soon.  In that sense, I may love the changing of seasons more than I enjoy any one particular time of year.

Song Of The Day:
It would be a near-blasphemous error to not feature a song by the Four Seasons in this post, so here is "December, 1963 (Oh, What A Night)" in all it's disco-sounding glory.  I very much dislike disco, but I've heard a few renditions of this tune and just dig every one, disco-themed or not.


Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Who Do You Root For ?

Today I was reflecting on the title question above.  But not from a sports or competition perspective.  I was considering the implications in the game of life.

I root for:
- people who do the work
- companies that care
- goodwill, peace, and charity

I root for:
- success to find individuals who have earned it
- my children to have the strength and commitment to overcome challenges
- anyone, anywhere who wants to learn and grow and change for the better

I DO NOT root for:
- people who seek first to take the credit
- companies that are all about the 'bottom line'
- negativity or finding someone to blame

I DO NOT root for:
- success to find individuals who just think they deserve it
- my children to be better than other people's kids
- anyone, anywhere who refuses to learn or grow or change

I rejoice in achievements and accolades for those who truly deserve it, while secretly being glad when failure finds those who don't.  I do not wish or hope for bad things to happen to people, but I reserve my rooting for those people that are choosing to do the right things whether anyone else is watching or not.  I've recently seen several examples of people quietly, almost secretly, doing great things for others while trying not to draw attention to their efforts.  I find myself taking note and then cheering them on, indiscreetly of course - go (person's name)!  Thank you to each of you who have done this!  You are inspiring and I truly believe life will reward you for your choices!

Song Of The Day:
I really like the song "In The House Of Stone And Light" by Martin Page and so it's my choice for today's post.  The artist was someone I rooted for, but I also just love the sounds in this tune.


Monday, September 15, 2014

What Is This Feeling ?

What a glorious sunrise!
Lately I just can't shake this feeling that something is coming.  It's a feeling like it is something I've been preparing for my whole life without even realizing it.  I have no expectations or even guesses about what it might be, but the signs seem to be everywhere.  To be more specific, I find myself being drawn more toward things of a spiritual or soulful nature.  I've been seeing more things through a different set of eyes or perhaps just from a new perspective.  I am sure I will have failings.  I am certain to struggle, in fact this is what some of the signs have amounted to, but I feel a peacefulness or even quiet strength.  It is a great feeling and I hope I can keep it.

Song Of The Day:
This morning, while driving 5 young men to Seminary, I heard a song for the first time and it really echoed what I've been feeling.  "Greater" by Mercy Me is a great tune for a Monday morning.  The infectious drum beats certainly would be enough to pump anyone up, but the message behind the words is equally, if not more, inspiring.  Greater is the one living inside of me than he who is living in the world.  This line itself speaks to a truth I know and hold dear to my soul: I am a child of God and He loves me.


Tuesday, September 2, 2014

How Does All This End Up In The Laundry ?

Song Of The Day:
While it is true that the above photo represents items 'saved' from the washer and dryer over the preceding 3 or so months, I don't think it makes it any less questionable how some of these things were found in kids' pants pockets.
And this was just the downstairs laundry - yes, in a house of 9 people, dual washer/dryer areas are a virtual necessity!
Today's song is "Nothing Lasts Forever" by Maroon 5, because it reminds me that the time is not far away when my kids will be grown up and I won't have the humor that comes from rescuing their 'prized possessions' before they get washed away.