Last week I rang the bell for the Salvation Army. I have been ringing the bell for over 40 years. First I rang it with my husband who was a member of Kiwanis. Then for many years I rang it as a member of Zonta International. Now I am ringing it with the staff and volunteers of Bethany Good Samaritan. It is a pleasure and an honor to do this each holiday season.
I was at Brainerd Cub for an hour and I must have had five or six people stop and tell me how the Salvation Army helped them in the past. The most stirring story was a woman who experienced a home fire and the Salvation Army staff was there right away asking the family what they needed and how could they help them. They stayed connected to them until they knew they were safe and ok.
The story in the Dispatch about Fleet Farm really touched my heart and I have to say how much I admire their decision to change their original plans. Fleet Farm is one of our favorite stores and has been since we moved here in 1960. Before I retired I worked or volunteered for many nonprofits and often we would send a letter to Fleet Farm requesting a donation. They would always send something but they were so humble — never wanting to be acknowledged.
Thank you Fleet Farm and best wishes to the Salvation for a great holiday helping many folks.
Bullying, a concept that affects us all; but still can be very elusive. Webster’s Dictionary lists a No. 1 definition of a “bully” as, “A person who hurts, frightens, threatens, or tyrannizes over those who are smaller or weaker”.
In today’s writings I am not going to pretend that I have a bundle of answers for you. The best I can do is assure that, if I can get you to question how you have been acting or reacting in your daily living you will come out with answers to your conditions, I couldn’t dream of.
First of all. somewhere along the line we have to accept the idea that there is a better way to get the right thing “done” than “bullying”. In our day to day living, getting along with people, whether parenting, teaching, coaching, or however, you can somehow get the task done without hurting, frightening, or threatening, then you have succeeded!
Again on your walks through life you can’t help but notice some people of all ages who seem afraid to raise their eyes. Is the person having a bad day, or is it the left over effect of some long ago bullying? Perhaps bullying can take other not so obvious forms? Like being left out of the “big” party or really “important” meeting, or not having the proper clothes or medical aide.
Webster’s Dictionary refers to a friend as a person one knows well and is fond of, intimate with. and close to. It would seem that in our association with people we would strive to be a “friend.”
I sit down each morning and read the Dispatch. Parts of it catch my interest more than others. The news is important so that’s what I read first. Sometime the sports, but being an old codger, the kids school pages — not so much. Until today. Today for the first time I looked at the faces. Smiling faces, happy to be at school but not really worried about tomorrow. It’s a time of innocence when you’re not supposed to have to be concerned with that. I wish there was some way to tell you kids and make you understand that those who have been charged with that responsibility, aren’t worried about your tomorrows either.
They are greedy people who run for office with an agenda that leaves your future in limbo kids. Oh they have kids and grandkids too, that is true, but unlike your Mom and Dad they are for the most part what we call well off. The future is bright for their kids. They hang around Congress for a few years and never have to work again. Not to make a living that is.
There was a time back in the good old days when people cared about the future of this country, kids. But if the politicians’ actions are any indication, that time may have well passed. They’re in a feeding frenzy mode right now and their political agendas come first and the country comes second. That’s you and I, kids, when I say the country. They want you to grow up and clean up the mess they have made someday because they don’t have time for that.
Kids keep smiling and keep praying for your country. You’re our future not them. I hope you have something left to work with when that time comes.