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Archive for May, 2007

Although he was born last of the Contino siblings, he certainly is not least!  My brother Johnny made his way into the world on May 8, 1969, one month ahead of schedule, and he’s tried to stay ahead ever since!  He’s ahead of us all in the offspring department.  Thanks to Krissy, John has 3 beautiful children.  Nick 10, Ben8, and Natalie 5.   Happy b-lated birthday, dear little brother.  You are beloved.

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A teacher gave her class of second-graders a lesson on the magnet and what it does. The next day, in a written test, she included this question: “My name has six letters. The first one is m. I pick up things. What am I?” When the test papers were turned in, the teacher was astonished to find that almost 50 percent of the students answered the question with the word mother.

Yes, mothers do pick up things, but they are much more than “magnets,” gathering up clothes and picking up toys around the house. As willing as many mothers are to do such chores, they have a higher calling than that.

A good mother loves her family and provides an atmosphere where each member can find acceptance, security, and understanding. She is there when the children need a listening ear, a comforting word, a warm hug, or a loving touch on a fevered brow. And for the Christian mother, her greatest joy is in teaching her children to trust and love Jesus as their Savior. ¾R.W.D. from Our Daily Bread

When I read this article above the other day, my thoughts turned to my dear Mother. Not only did she have me to pick up after, but five others as well. She had three in diapers at one time and claimed that when the last one was potty trained, she would have a diaper-burning party. In a day when divorce was still relatively uncommon, she found herself suddenly a single mom, having to raise six kids on her own. How did she do it? Even though we weren’t raised in all the truths of the Bible, Mom firmly believed that the family that prays together stays together. She repeated that saying a lot and reinforced it by having us pray the rosary every night together. When we had to sell our home and could not afford our own, my mom’s sister took us all in. We lived in a converted chicken coop; a one-room building about the size of a narrow single-width mobile home. See here to read about our life in the chicken coop as told by my brother Bobby. Mom didn’t drive, so whenever she needed to go anywhere, she would walk. I still remember her with a shopping cart laden with bags of dirty laundry, trekking through the cold and snow to the laundry mat to wash our clothes.

Mom was the glue that held our family together. I see so many families today ravaged by divorce that are falling apart. Somehow Mom’s kids all seemed to turn out pretty decent in spite of our circumstances. I truly believe it was Mom’s determination and love for God and us that kept our family close. I’m thankful for my Mom and all she has instilled in me. Mom is a prayer warrior. She lives with us now, and there are times when we have to get onto her for staying up so late praying and reading the Bible when she needs to get some much-needed sleep. Thank you Mom, for all that you do. I love you!

Mothers Day 2007Originally uploaded by karing1960@sbcglobal.net.

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Earlier this week was a very special day in the annals of history.  48 years ago, somewhere between May 6 and May 7, 1959, my dear future husband made his breeched entrance into the world.  He came out feet first and hit the ground running!  I want to pay tribute to my dear husband.  I thought I loved him when I said I do, almost 28 years ago (June 16, 1979), but as our happy Pastor says when referring to his love for his wife, “More than yesterday, less than tomorrow”.  Why do I love him so much?  Let me count some of the ways:

 

  • His sincerity and love for God, truth and holiness.  Mike won me to the Lord and helped to instill in me a love for His Word.  I love sharing spiritual truths with Mike that I have learned, and he loves to share with me also.  He’s my best friend.
  • He has a big, generous heart.  He not only loves me, he loves my family.  Just about every member of my family has lived with us at one time or another.
  • He’s an awesome teacher, especially when it comes to the bible, astronomy, science and physics.
  • His giving, self-sacrificial spirit.  When my brother Tommy was deathly ill last year, Mike flew to Seattle to get Tom and brought him back home to family.  He’s taken time off work to bring Tom to doctor appointments when I was unable to do so.
  • He’s a velvet and steel kind of guy.  He’s 100% true-grit man, but Mike is not afraid to cry if moved to do so.

 

There’s so much more I could say, but I think you get the picture.

 

Thank you, Honey for all that you are too me and all that you do to show your love.  I know that it was God who brought us together, and I am so grateful!

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I wrote the article below as an assignment from the blogspot of Maria Keckler, who is a master wordsmith.   I thought I would share it with you all.  The subject is one that could evoke me to write pages and pages of thoughts.  But I would run out of time.  Anyhow,  hope you are inspired by this: 

 

Less is more.  Is there really such an entity?   The term almost sounds like an oxymoron.  How can less be more?  Let me count some of the ways I’ve observed.

 

  • I am spending way too much of my spare time at the computer terminal, and my hubby is feeling neglected.  I decide to spend less time on my computer and am now able to spend more quality time with my dear hubby. In this case, less is more. 

 

  • I once heard a parable about a man who had acquired all the latest gadgets and appliances for his home.  This was done for the sake of convenience and saving time.  In the end, all those gizmos, widgets and domestic equipment required more of his time than it saved him.  The microwave needed cleaning, the showerhead needed replacement, the dishwasher needed repairs, the computer needed upgrading, and the list goes on!   Once he rid himself of the really unnecessary items, he had more time for other pursuits.  In this case, less is more.

 

Being a Christian, I wanted to see what the Bible’s take was on this idea of less being more.  Here is what I found.

 

  • John the Baptist was called by God to be the forerunner of Jesus Christ, the Messiah.  He preached the baptism of repentance for the remission of sins.  He had a huge following too.  But when Jesus came on the scene, shortly after that, John recognized that the Messiah had truly come.  His mission to prepare the hearts of the people to receive the Messiah was nearing its fulfillment.  John realized this when he said, “He must increase, but I must decrease.”   In other words, less of John meant more of Jesus.
  • Jesus Himself said, “I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, unless a grain of wheat falls into the earth and dies, it remains [just one grain; it never becomes more but lives] by itself alone.  But if it dies, it produces many others and yields a rich harvest.  (John 12:24 Amplified Version)  Another illustration of less becoming more.

These are just a few examples.  The Bible is replete with instances like these.  This theme of less is more can even be seen in nature.  The example Jesus gave above is one.  Here is another:  There are some plants that cannot reproduce without a fire opening up their cones and releasing their seeds.  Giant Sequoia trees are an example of this, their cones are called serotenous and they only open after a fire goes over them and opens them up.  I truly believe there is a spiritual lesson that can be learned from the concept of less is more.  But that is another discussion for another time!!

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Today is not only Cinco de Mayo, which I never knew about until I moved to California, but it is also my youngest sister, Annie’s birthday.   Out of our six siblings, Annie is the only girl that is still in her 30’s.  Next year will be a milestone birthday for her, and we plan to get her bigtime!  Love ya bunches, Cookie!  Enjoy your last hurrah in the 30’s!

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