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|Posted by lehewitt on June 21, 2016 at 10:55 AM|
I am guilty. You are guilty. We all are guilty of self importance syndrome. It is just natural to feel that our lives, our work, our actions are a big deal. I have been examining this subject a bit. We tend to view our lives as more important than say, a fly or a gnat or a moth. We also tend to view our lives as more important that say, an elephant. Yet, we tend to think of the life of the elephant as more important than that same fly or gnat or moth. Is it a size thing? Now, I realize that the elephant is bigger than we are, but aside from our own species, are the larger critters considered more important? We massacre hundreds, if not thousands of little critters just by driving the car to the store on a summer's evening. Nobody really thinks much about it. Now, I wouldn't strat running down elephants with my car because that would be a collision that I would probably lose. But, how would I feel if I squished a hundred squirrels or bunny rabbits on my way to WalMart? Would that be hareder on my conscience? Why? Because of the size thing? I'm not really certain of the reasoning there.
So, here is my next dilemna. We may think of ourselves as important, yet we are just as insignificant a part of the Universe as those pesky gnats. There are an estimated 6,000,000,000,000,000,000,000 planets in the visible Universe. Yep, that's just in the part we can see! Additionally, there is reason to believe that there may even be other universes out there that we cannot even begin to detect! We haven't even been to the planet right next door yet. I cannot even begin to grasp the magnitude of this place we inhabit. The closest comparision for me would be an ant who was born in the center of a large midwestern cornfield would most likely spend its entire life assuming that the entire Universe looked like a cornfield, because it could walk from birth until death and never reach the end of the corn. My comparison is nowhere near being as dramatic as the insignificance of little ol me to all that is out there in space. My entire existence is but a blink of an eye in time. My importance miniscule. Yet, I am here! I am enjoying every second of my time! I am a grand prize winner in the life lottery and I intend to be grateful for every second given to me! The best thing that this examination has reaffirmed in me is to not sweat the small stuff and yes, indeed, it is all small stuff! Live, love, be happy, be kind, enjoy! Be humbled by the fact that you are a part of this grand miracle!
|Posted by lehewitt on June 1, 2016 at 12:45 AM|
Yesterday was Memorial Day. It was a beautiful, early Summer day. I slept in late. I lounged around a bit. Then we had a get together at 5:00. We had the grill up and running and filled with potatoes and corn, hot dogs and kielbasa, pork chops, burgers and chicken. Elizabeth made the cheese dip, the one with hamburger and cream cheese in it. We also had Italian pasta salad, ice cream sundaes, a vegetable and fruit tray, and a couple of persistent ants. We had tether tennis, horseshoes, frisbees and bocce ball in the yard for everyone to enjoy. There was even a Minnie Mouse kickball in use that had blown in during a recent storm from some unknown neighbor's yard. Later, we all played Balderdash around my large wooden coffee table. It was a very relaxing and low stress holiday celebration, just as it should be. Smiles all around.
2016 has gotten off to a stressfilled beginning. It has been a year plagued, thusfar, with negatives and challenges. It was so refreshing to be able to put that to rest, if only for a day. Hopefully, this was a sign of a turning point, a change in the air, a more enjoyable remainder of the year.
|Posted by lehewitt on January 29, 2016 at 2:55 PM|
It's Friday, January 29th. I have been hibernating today. It has been a challenging week. My mother passed away at the age of ninety early last Sunday morning. Next came the unending flurry of messages, phone calls, travel, arrangements, decisions, meetings, events, people, and more. A loved one dies and the family is suddenly cast into the hosting role for visitation by hundreds of people. Certainly, it was good to see the faces and feel the love, but I was really more in a mood to just crawl into bed and cover my head. Instead, my brother and I had to go through Mom's things and meet with a lawyer, make decisions about services, and be placed into the center of the events. I am emotionally exhausted. I am basically numb. Time will make things better. But, for now I will enjoy the tranquility of this time alone. I did have the opportunity to speak at the services for my mother, and I decided to share with you what I said...
We are all here today because someone we care about has passed away. She was Mom to me, grandma to others, great grandma, aunt, coworker, friend. She carried many titles in life. Lunch lady, cake lady, crazy old lady behind the wheel, many titles. We are also reflecting a bit on our own mortality today. For each one of us, there will come a day when people will gather to mourn our passing, and I believe that each one of us would be honored to be remembered as fondly as my mom, Betty Jean Chambers Hewitt.
She was a woman with a caring and genuine heart. I have heard her referred to countless times as the strongest woman most of us have ever known. I have never forgotten something that she once said to me many years ago, "You know, there is nothing that I cannot do, if someone just shows me how." That simple statement stuck with me. I saw her live this statement time and time again. Not only was she a great cook and cake lady, she was an Avon lady, she worked in a nursing home, she was a census taker many times over, last working the census in 2010. She worked in the butcher shop, she was an election board member, a ladies auxiliary volunteer, she cleaned houses for the elderly, tended to sixty head of cattle, and took care of a family. How do I know all of these things? Because, she drug my brother and I along to almost all of these adventures. We also raised gardens, cared for livestock, picked berries, dug a good fifty bushel of taters most years, snapped beans, shelled peas, canned fruit and froze corn all summer, for the coming winters. We were a busy bunch! We were far from rich. But, through perserverance and hard work, nobody ever went hungry, or was cold, or felt unwanted.
I spoke to my mother's roommate at the assisted living place where she resided yesterday. She had a message for you who are here today. She said, "Tell those people that there is no need to be sad. Your mom and I were talking Saturday evening and I told her that I was going to go to bed. She said she thought it was bedtime too. I told her goodnight. She told me goodnight. Then we both just went to sleep. It was as peaceful as could be." So, while yes there is sadness here today, this is also a time to celebrate the full and beautiful life that my mother shared with each of you.
I have just told you about a few of my mother's good qualities. One other majot part of what made her who she was was her love of animals. She sometimes told the story of how, as a child, she would run outside when her mother was selecting a chicken for Sunday dinner, to make sure that none of her favorites were taken. She stated that it was much more difficult to swallow when you knew that Charlie, the chicken you had named and loved, was now the main course sitting in front of you.
Many of you knew her as the cat lady. My mother would take care of any cat that needed a home. We fed them, medicated them, and housed them. My brother and I were the only children in the neighborhood with a cat house in our yard. Mom also had a soft spot for dogs. We think she may have fed a few of them to death, but they died fat and happy. The other animal that Mom loved was the turtle. Many times I recall her slamming on her brakes and jumping out of the car to snatch one up who was crossing the road, later to release it into some safe patch of grass and send it on its way. There was no living thing for which she did not show compassion and kindness.
Wouldn't we all be happy to be remembered for so many positive ways in which we made a difference? My mom is a shining example of a life well lived. Ninety-plus years of making the world a better place because she was in it. So, while this is indeed a sad occasion, let it also be a celebration of a very successful life's journey and a lesson to us all.
|Posted by lehewitt on December 5, 2015 at 12:30 AM|
I always seem to get myself into trouble! I will admit that life is more fun that way, but still, I think I may annoy some people along the way. Which people? Well, those who live inside the proverbial box. The ones who follow the herd and do not see this whole miracle we are living as an adventure. You must conform! Well, I am not very good at conformity. I rather like being me! I listened to someone droning on today about their miseries of getting ready for Chistmas. I didn't join them. I rather felt sorry for them. I am excited! Tomorrow, I am making Chex Mix. Next week, it's cookies. The Victoria's Secret Holiday Show is on TV this coming Tuesday! What more could a guy want? My son, Will, the 20 year old college student, has that gene too. Last year he wanted a SwingWing for Christmas. This year it's a yodeling pickle. He gets it! Anyhow, I know all of this probably makes no sense at all to you. It's nearly 1am and my mind is always going in all directions at this hour. I love the peace and solitude that the middle of the night brings. I think I should go make me some hot Ovaltine and chill with FuzzButt before bed!
|Posted by lehewitt on September 9, 2015 at 3:25 PM|
It's here! It's here! It is September 9th and it's here! After several days in the nineties to appease those silly summer lovers, the first hint fall has arrived! It's in the sixties and seventies for highs and forties and fifties for lows for the forseeable future! All I can say is AHHHHHH! I LOVE this time of year! So comfortable for a hot natured beast like me! I can be outside without being all sweaty and stinky. Also, it's a mere three weeks til pumpkin pie season! Life is good!
|Posted by lehewitt on September 8, 2015 at 9:25 PM|
Sometimes I just wish life had a pause button so that I could get off the ride and just catch my breath for a bit, figure out which direction I am heading, get my thoughts in order. My trouble is that when I try to slow down and gain compass, I always find something else that needs doing and I get started on yet another tangent. Also, people just do some strange shit. We all have our own issues and baggage that we drag along as we get older, but some people are beyond my comprehension. I don't know if it is a good or bad trait, but when I encounter someone with weird baggage, I tend to run the other way anymore. I used to try and help them and get drawn into their drama. That just created more trouble than it was worth. You cannot change someone. They must want to change from within. Now do not get me wrong! I know that there are people out there who think I am as looney as they come. There are those who fail to understand me and my ways. They think I live way out in right field somewhere. I guess I just wish I could encounter a few more right fielders to spend my time with .
|Posted by lehewitt on August 28, 2015 at 3:20 PM|
A pill that I have taken for a few years lists a possible side effect of vivid dreams. I love that side effect. My dream world is so much fun! In my dreams, I live in a very specific house. I can describe every room for you, especially the kitchen. I love the fact that I can eat whatever I want in my dreams. I also love that my dad is still alive there. We spend many good times together. I can also levitate and fly at will. I have become quite proficient at that! What's not to like?
Why, just last night I had a dream about Will and Elizabeth, two of my three children. They are supposed to go to a Taylor Swift concert soon and I dreamed that Will had come home from college to go to the show and Taylor stopped by to see him, since he is her #1 fan. But, just as happens in the awake world with most women, TS has a major crush on me. I tried to explain to her that she is too young and it would really weird out Will, but I don't think that she is buying my argument. She is a pretty girl and rich and all, but Tay Tay, I am sorry, I need a rich pretty girl closer to my own age. I am saddened that I have to break your heart like this.
|Posted by lehewitt on August 5, 2015 at 7:10 PM|
Last night I had a reconnecting conversation with an old friend. It felt good. It wasn't long or drawn out, just a catching up session. We lose people like this through the years and that's a shame. We all head out in different directions and lead our own lives. It is good to re-establish the things that made us friends to begin with.
Today, I had a conversation with someone who wanted to know some things about my ancestors and things I remember from my childhood. They unknowingly took me back to my grandfather's farm and to my favorite remote place to go to play in the water or go fishing. They reminded me of long forgotten relatives and friends without even realizing it. I could smell the air and feel the sensations in my imagination of what life was like back then. I am amazed at the details I can remember from my childhood. To this day, I could take a mental walk all around my grandfather's 160 acre farm step by step. I know it so well. My life was innocent, yet complete back then. I need to revisit those times more often.
|Posted by lehewitt on August 3, 2015 at 8:55 PM|
I love to reminisce. I have so many great memories from fifty-plus years of wandering aimlessly around this big sphere of dirt and rocks. I was fortunate to grow up in an ideal little village in Pennsylvania, surrounded by good, God fearing people who looked out for one another. I can still mentally travel house by house through that little place and tell you evryone who lived there in roughly 1970. I knew them all and they knew me. All 250 of them. We were all basically poor. Money was a necessity, but none of us lived in great extravagance. That was okay. We were basically a happy bunch, an extended family of sorts. There was the local general store, two laundromats, a gas station with a diner in the back, a tractor supply, an elementary school, a beauty shop, and that's about it. We had all of these businesses to support the folks who lived out in the surrounding countryside. I knew most of them too. It was safe. It was fun, adventurous. We weren't inside much. Both adults and kids spent much more time outside. There was always something going on, something to do. Some was work, some was play, but it was all a part of who I was to become.
|Posted by lehewitt on July 29, 2015 at 4:20 PM|
I am full of unanswered questions. There are so many things I wish I understood about my life. For instance, why does the cat always throw up on my shoes? Why does the mailman always come late if I am waiting on him? Why do the days go by so much faster now than when I was a kid?