September 4, 2015

The life lessons we learned at the animal shelter

When my children stated they wanted to do community service by volunteering at a local animal shelter, I couldn’t have been happier.  Truth be told, I would probably be a hoarder with fifty dogs if it wasn’t for my wonderful, conservative husband.  
I have to admit we were caught off guard our first trip there.  Not only is it hard to see all the animals in kennels, we were also side by side with female inmates from the local jail which was a first for us.

We also witnessed several owner surrenders.  A family brought in their three yard dogs; one with its ears ripped open and bleeding after being bit. We noticed that no one in the family seemed upset.
Then we watched as a woman surrendered her sweet bulldog at the front desk because “she was moving and they wouldn’t allow dogs there”.  The dog had a heavy chain for a collar and leash, which was bothersome to see.  My daughter whispered after the woman left, “she is probably going to jail and that is why she can’t keep the dog.”  I chuckled a bit at the irony of her comment.

We felt validated at the animal shelter. we were doing the right thing.  We have two rescues at home, and loved getting the sweet dogs out for some play time.  And, who gives up their dog?
Then on the way home, I remembered that we actually surrendered our dog Buffi to an animal shelter 12 years ago.  She had tried to bite our baby.  I tried to rehome her sitting with her at Petsmart on Saturdays, but as she snarled at people and bared her teeth, it didn't really go well.   When my husband took Buffi to that shelter years ago, they didn’t even take her collar.  She would immediately be put down.  My husband was one of those people in the foyer. 

But many years had passed, and I was quick to judge the owner surrenders I witnessed.   

Several visits later to the animal shelter, we were walking the dogs outside for some time in their chain link fence pens. The male inmates in the jail next door were given their “outside” time in their much larger chain link kennel.  My girls were quite uncomfortable by the all the inmates in uniform.  They chose to stay inside in the puppy room and avoid seeing the inmates.  I was uncomfortable too.  I was envisioning cat calls and chose to avoid the dog run areas which were close to the inmates. 

The inmates were a big point of conversation that day.  We talked about life choices and how you don’t want to end up in jail.
Then something happened the next night at dinner.  As we were saying grace before the meal, my oldest prayed for our sick friends.  Then my youngest added, “We should pray for the inmates too”.

That’s when I realized volunteering at the shelter wasn’t just about walking the dogs.   

"In all things I have shown you that by working hard in this way we must help the weak and remember the words of the Lord Jesus, how he himself said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive.’ "Acts 20:35.

August 24, 2015

Why you should really bring tissues to a Nascar Race

I attended my first Nascar race this past weekend.  My friend googled some helpful tips for newbies, among the suggested items:

bring tissues in case the bathrooms run out of toilet paper
Well, I am sure glad we had tissues.  
I left for the trip anticipating the “People of Walmart” combined with a football tailgate, and that is pretty accurate. But, it is also SO much more.   

It is an event where fans-

...never meet a stranger.  Our campground neighbor left their outdoor TV  on for our group to watch the Friday night qualifier race we didn’t attend.

...can let it all hang out.  

...repeat, let it all hang out.

...get 5-star service with cooler check-in.  Take that college football. other fans they are in fact a “professional Nascar” regular attendee by sporting the  well-stocked, clear backpack. 

(clearly an amateur fan)
...Pray with over 100,000 of your best friends for the safety of the drivers, before you go purchase your 20-ounce beer.  

...get an arm workout as you wave at your driver as they pass in front of you, 500 times.  

500 times!

...see stadium parachuters, a jet flyover, fireworks and a car burnout in the same evening.  

Okay, this was really cool to watch in person.

Although some of these moments were either touching or made me laugh till I was about to cry, that is not why I needed tissues.   It was these 2 babies that were stowaways in our friends rented RV bus that were found Friday at 4 AM.  

They only saw a tail at first and thought it was a rat, but then they started desperately meowing.
They were alive, but had endured  over 12 hours in a drawer underneath the bus.   


The Nascar fans jumped into action.   

A friend who had an infant let us feed the kittens her pumped milk.

Another neighbor gave us their dog’s food in case we could soften it for them to eat.  Another got us a tall box we could leave them in while we attended the race on Saturday night (in the A/C of course). 

And all came over to wish them well in their make shift pack n play.

At maybe 4 weeks old, it really is a miracle they were alive.  Luckily, between the milk and soft food we purchased at the local store, we were able to not only keep them alive, but see them flourish and act like fun little kittens.

We later found out that there were more kittens the RV owners removed from the RV, but they couldn’t get to these two.   I can’t comment on that with my own words and keep this post clean, so I found a bible verse:

A righteous man has regard for the life of his animal, but even the compassion of the wicked is cruel. Proverbs 12:10

 These babies have a great life ahead of them and quite a story to tell.  They were taken home by our friends who had rented the RV they were found in (they said we should take them, but as the owner of 2 dogs, about to add a 3rd rescue, I thought, "we are good")
I was totally caught off guard when I said goodbye to these sweet babies I cared for and loved on for two days, I bawled like a little baby.   
I followed the kittens into the RV bus as they were leaving and thought about becoming a stowaway myself. 

Well, they say to bring tissues to a Nascar race and I am glad I did.

June 28, 2015

Why Christians should really be upset.

Christians we should be upset.  Very upset. But not because the Supreme Court upheld gay marriage.

We should be upset because someone can walk into a church or our children’s school and shoot them dead.  

We should be upset because college students raped an incoherent girl in their dorm and people laughed while they did it.

We should be upset that everyday someone finds out they have cancer.

We should be upset because everyday children are dying or being abused at the hands of their caretakers and/or parents.

We should be upset because there are people with children who can’t care for them physically, emotionally or financially.

We should be upset because everyday people commit suicide.

We should be upset that there are people in our community, maybe our own neighborhood, that didn’t eat dinner tonight.

We should be upset that we live next to pedophiles, murderers and rapists.

We should be upset that some people would rather to beg then to work.

We should be upset that our schools don’t have the resources they need to teach our precious children.

We should be upset with what is on TV.  

We should be upset that we don’t know our next door neighbor.

We should be upset that so many don’t know the love of Jesus.

So be upset.  But don’t spread hatred.

I was raised by a lesbian ERA hippie. I am now a Christian stay at home mom and vote republican. Who would have thought?

Preach less. Pray more.

January 27, 2015

Common Sense You Need to Know

Remember the nice poster we all have read,

“Everything I ever needed to know I learned in kindergarten.”  

After reading the news,
I came up with a new list.
What is wrong with people!

This... could save someone or something’s life.

  1. If you have sex, you can get pregnant.
  2. Plan accordingly now that you have read #1. 
  3. If you don’t read #2, know that children need caretakers, food, clothing, shelter and love.
  4. You cannot leave infants or children in cars, or home alone to fend for themselves, or lock them in cages.
  5. You should not leave infants or children alone with child molesters or any type of animal. Even ferrets.  
  6. If you cannot abide by #3, #4, AND #5, please give your child up for adoption.
  7. Animals can reproduce just like humans, but more quickly.  Take the same precautions as #2. 
  8. You cannot board a plane with any weapons, chemicals or animals that are not allowed.
  9. It is not okay to drown a puppy in the toilet in the airport once you are told you are not allowed to board the plane with the animal.
  10. Do not swim alone.
  11. If you cannot swim, do not go in a lake or ocean where the floor drops off abruptly.  Even if you can swim, be careful.
  12. Tell your family or friends where you are going and where you have been.
  13. Respect and obey the police. If you resist arrest or fight with police, you may get shot.
  14. If you barge through someone’s front door, you may get shot.  
  15. Don’t drink and drive; and if you engage police in a high speed chase, you could get killed or kill someone.
  16. If you kill someone, the death penalty may be the punishment, so please don't act suprised. 
  17.  Salt and chili powder can in fact be lethal.
  18. Stealing is against the law.
  19. The addicted, lost, angry and homeless all have a story.   
  20. Tell the truth.
  21. Go with your gut instinct, always.
  22. If you don't like something in the store, you won't like it any better at home. 
  23. If you wouldn’t want it done to you, don’t do it to someone else.
  24. You catch more flies with honey, so remember to smile and bake cookies for someone.
  25. Pray daily.  Not just for yourselves and your family, but for our whole world. 

Give a man a fish and you feed him for a day; teach a man to fish and you feed him for a lifetime.”