A Quote to Start Things Off

Somebody told me there was no such thing as truth. I said if that's the case then why should I believe you" -Lecrae - Gravity

Search Me!

Pictures of Memories I

Pictures of Memories I
Snow kidding! These "kids" now range from 17 to 23

Tuesday, March 23, 2021

How to Get Through 2021: Press On.

 When I wrote my first How to get through 2021 post, I did not expect to write another one the next month and certainly not to write another one the month after that.  But this seems to be exactly what I'm doing.

In my first installment, I talked about how Day by Day interaction with God will help us get through difficult times,  In the second I mentioned about how true Shoulder to Shoulder fellowship will aid us in that journey.  That should be it, I thought.  If God is not all encompassing enough relying on  and serving others who are also relying on and serving God should fill in the gaps. 

Well there seems to be a third ingredient in progressing through difficult times and I was reminded it of last night when listening to Spotify. I was listening to a song by Billy Sprague , a musician, song writer and performer who years ago lost his fiance in a car accident.  She was driving to one of his concerts when the accident occurred. He took a 3 year hiatus from recording and touring and his 2nd release after his return led off with the song, Press On.


Although Sprague certainly did not write this song for Covid the emotions expressed are similar to the results of living in lock-down. 

Consider these lyrics

... the passion for life drained like blood from my chest

And it took more than  my will just to take a step when the compass of hope was gone. 


Every desperate prayer seemed like heaven refused and some days I found faith meant just tying my shoes and it was all I could do to press on.

In shampoo bottle parlance, if Day by Day is wash and Shoulder to Shoulder is rinse then Press On is repeat.  Pressing on is a continuation of trusting God  and walking along side each other through our trials and our joys.  

Look at the Shoulder to Shoulder living happening in the 2nd verse...

On the oceans so lonesome I  was not left alone

had some heavenly friends when my heart was a stone

and they carried my heart ache and made it their own

when the current of sorrow was strong.

(and one said)

"I pray your memories will not drag you down

not be anchors but treasures of the love that you found"

and his kind words turned hurt into comfort somehow

and the wind in my sails to press on.

I think at least those of us  in western society consider pressing on a solitary activity.  I think it is actually quite communal.  There are heartaches every in life that could be greatly  benefit from  a group of people making it their own.  Even as I was writing this, a friend called to invite me to a church service on Easter which reminded me how his own father said kind words to me on an Easter Sunday some 30 years ago that put the  wind back  in my sails.  I'll save that story for another time. 

In Philippians Chapter 3 the Apostle Paul discusses the concept of pressing on.  In verse 9 he talks about attaining a righteousness that comes from God on the basis of faith in Christ.  In verses 10 and 11 he talks about knowing Christ through his  suffering , death and resurrection. In verses 12 and 14 he describes how he is progressing to this point but having not yet reached it and how  he is pressing on towards that goal.  In the 2nd part of the 13th verse he writes something that describes a successful strategy for combating grief, co-vid or anything that life throws at us ...

Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead. Philippians 3:13B (NIV)

Paul as he often does is using his words to assign priorities.  The past can be very instructional to us but we should never let it define us.  Grief doesn't define us. Lock-down shouldn't define us. A Christians goal should be to become more like Christ.  We can do that by pressing on and we weren't meant to that alone. 


 I think this may be it, but who knows, there is still a lot of 2021 to get through and I know a lot of songs.  

Tuesday, March 16, 2021

Last 5 Next 10

 I enjoy reading and I enjoy writing.  It is sometimes difficult for me to write about either writing or reading.  Each Summer I try to read books and then post short reviews on one blog or the other.  Each summer I fail miserably in the review department.  I started strong but I can't keep up with the individual posts.  This year I'm going to try something different.  let's see how I do.  After finishing 5 books, I will mention them here and then list off ten books that I am either in some process of reading (I read several books at a time) or am planning to read soon.  

Before I begin, lets define what I mean by reading. I mean by reading either reading the printed page, reading an on line version of a book,  or listening to a book on tape, c.d., play-a-way or on line or being read to by someone live or reading to someone live.   I am less reticent about this practice than I was when I wrote Is listening the new reading? a couple years back.


I am using the following  scale. to quickly rate these books:

hate dislike okay like love


Dick Allen: The Life and Times of a Baseball Immortal by William C Kashatus

Why I chose this book: I have been a White Sox fan since 1972 and Dick Allen was a big reason why I became a fan and was my first White Sox hero. Mr. Allen passed away in the latter part of 2020 and I have been finding out more about him since then.

Type: Book (Read it to myself)

How Obtained: Inter-library loan through my local library.

Rating: Closer to Like than Love

The Quick and the Dead by Louis L'Amour

Why I chose this book: Allen Levi, one of my favorite musicians reccommended the works of Louis L'AMour by singing about him.  In "The Reason I Read Louis L'Amour" Levis distills a basic L'amour plot and in the chorus describes the basic recipe for a L'Amour book ...

A little bit of gunfire, a little bit of romance, a little bit of mystery and a little bit of gore. No matter what fix he's in, you know the good guy's gonna win. That's the reason I read Louis Lamour.

This and other Allen Levi songs and albums are available at band camp.

Type: Book (read it to myself)

How Obtained: Borrowed from collection at my local library.

Rating: Much closer to like than okay.

Rider of Lost Creek By Louis L'Amour

Why I chose this book: For the same exact reason I read The Quick and the Dead. In fact, I borrowed them at the same time from my local library.  

Rating: I liked this a little better than Quick and the Dead, a solid Like.

I am a Church Member - Thom S Rainer 

Why I chose this book: It is part of the curriculum for church membership in our church. 

Type: Book (alternated reading it to my wife and having her read it to me)

How obtained: Our church gave it to us as part of the membership class.  

Rating: It was a pretty good book, but Amy and I noticed several typo's.  We enjoyed the experience of reading to each other a little more than the content so I'll give it a solid Like.  If I had just read it to myself, i'd probably rank it just below the L'Amour books. 

Utah Blaine by Louis L'amour

Why I chose this book: I enjoyed the first two L'Amout books so I picked up 2 more the next time I was at my local library 

Type: Book (read to myself)

Rating: Between Like and Love, but I'm pretty sure that one of the draws of L'Amour's fiction is that whichever of his books you happen to be reading it becomes your new favorite. ( I am currently reading my 4th L'Amour and I think I like it just a little better than this one.)  

2021 Book Stats as of 3/13/21

5 books read in 72 days that's an average of 1 book read for every 14.4 days.  Those numbers are a little skewed as I didn't finish my first book of the year until February.  Even so, at that rate I should finish 25 books this year.  I do expect that projection to go up in future installments but we shall see,

10 Books I'm Reading or Planning to Read Soon

Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen

Hank Aaron: Groundbreaking Baseball Slugger - Doug Williams
How To Win The Culture War - Peter Kreeft

Hondo - Louis L'Amour

Farmer Boy - Laura Ingalls Wilder

Humor and the Presidency - Gerald Ford

For the Love of Mike - Mike Royko

Schulz and Peanuts - David Michaelis 

Jimmy Stweart, Bomber Pilot - Starr Smith

Little House on the Prairie - Laura Ingalls Wilder 

I would not be surprised if at my next installment I have read books that are not on this list, nor would I be surprised of some of the books on the next 10 list drop off for a while or permanently.  I am very eclectic and  this certainly shows in my reading choices.  

You'll notice that there is been no attempt made my be at all to review any of these books.  I do leave the door open to that possibility in the future. I think that will work better in my goal of chronicling my reading foot print for the year 2021.

Sunday, March 7, 2021

A to Z Challenge 2021 Theme Reveal

#AtoZChallenge 2021 Theme Reveal

It is almost time once again for the A to Z Challenge to come out of it's den and cast it's shadow to the
blogging community.  It is now time for participants to reveal their 2021 theme to the world.

I had several ideas for this years a to z challenge, some more ambitious and some less ambitious.  I think this one is just right and hopefully, like Goldilocks you'll eat it all up.

My A to Z challenge is to write about people who were living 100 years ago in 1921.  For example 13 men who had been , were , or would become U.S. presidents were alive in 1921. These presidents lived between 1856 and 2006.  All 4 of my grandparents were living in 1921.  They ranged in ages from 9 to 19 at that time.  The 9 year old eventually married the 19 year old but that was some years later.  

In the past I have participated in the challenge from multiple  blogs.  This year I come back to HSD after doing the last challenges from Random Acts of Roller.  I currently have 4 active blogs and have found  a way to involve each blog into the extravaganza.  The way is by A to Z Easter Eggs

What are A to Z Easter eggs you ask.  It is my way of adding additional related content my from my  other blogs to my a to z posts.  I will do this in 2 different ways one if I create additional content on one of my blogs and then post it concurrently with the a to z post, I will call that an to A to Z extra.  If I have already created that content and posted it previous to this years challenge I will call it A to Z archive. 

 For today's post I only have one kind of Easter eggs but I have plenty of that kind.. Last week at my vlog, Dave Out Loud on my feature called Quick Random Takes the topic I picked out of my hat just happened to be A to Z challenge.  I put that topic idea last May, so it's interesting it would pop up a week before the topic reveal.   In addition,  all 4 of my blogs including this one have A to Z archives which are links to my previous A to Z Challenges.  

A TO Z Easter Eggs

A to Z Archives: 

The challenge starts on Thursday April 1st and continues  every day but Sundays for the rest of the month. Click here to be redirected to the A to Z challenge.

Saturday, March 6, 2021

Roller Time

 This week I finished a 6 week subbing assignment relieving a 1:1 aide who was on maternity leaveem.  I worked with the same student for 6 weeks which was new and very rewarding for me. Each morning I would pick the student up at the bus and bring them to the class room.  Each afternoon I would take the student back to the bus.  Usually by the end of the day, my student would start to get very excited about going home and would start repeating momma time over and over again.  Sometimes if the student was having a particularly difficult day they might start saying momma time before it was near to the time school ended.  I Kind of  saw it as a suggestion/protest. One day Momma Time was being chanted at about 8:30 a.m.  

One morning  3 or 4 weeks into the assignment as I was picking my student up from the bus, the bus driver asked me what my name was.  I said it was Mr. Roller. She said that explains it, your student has been repeating Roller time, Roller time for the last 15 minutes.  I hope that means that I made as much of an impression on my student as  they did to me.  


Yesterday I almost went to a movie.  That's right I almost went to the movie theatre with my wife and watched a movie.  It's been almost a year since I've even thought of doing that.  The reason we didn't go was not because of any co-vid concerns, we e looked the movie up in my favorite ratings website, Plugged In, and realized that it might not be for us.  Our daughters went to the Disney dragon movie and both enjoyed it. 


Speaking of Disney, my younger daughter and I have been watching Wandavision on the Disney App.  We have been watching it the Friday it drops and watched the 9th and final installment yesterday.  If I were reviewing the show, my review would be uneven.  I'm not reviewing, it though.  I will say this, it's been super fun having a little vestige of appointment television and the experience was well worth the effort.


My Other Blogs

Besides this blog, I have 3 other active blogs.  Here are links to my most recent posts in each of them.

Crazy Uncle Dave's Sports Blog

Hall of Fame Voting Results 2021 - 2/13/21

Dave Out Loud

Quick Random Takes: A to Z Challenge 3/6/21 (currently now quickly becoming then)

Random Acts of Roller

Born on March 2nd 3/2/21

Quick Random Takes - A to Z Challenge

Head to A to Z challenge for more information on this years challenge.

Head to my blog HSD to follow me in the month of April. 

A to Z 2023 Road Trip

#AtoZChallenge 2023 RoadTrip