Once Upon A Time

Once upon a time, there was a little girl came into the world. This little girl had 2 older siblings. They were raised in a strict Christian home, taught the ways of God, taught how to cook, clean, sew their own clothes, farm, plant and harvest crops for survival.

At the age of 10, this little girl accepted Jesus into her heart and asked God to forgive her of her sins. She was baptized and went to church with her parents every time there was a service. She sang in churches throughout the state, sang on television and several radio programs.

As this little girl grew older, going to to school and finishing high school, getting her 1st job, she realized there was a world out there she did not know of. A world her godly parents shielded her from. Hmmm, she wanted to see what this world is about.

Long story short… she went to Bible college. She wanted to be a Youth Evangelist. Unfortunately, due to unforeseen circumstances, the college closed and she had to move back home without being able to graduate from this college.

Depression set in. Severe depression. How could this happen? Is this not what God had intended for her? She actually contemplated suicide. She made a phone call to her oldest sister who talked with her and kept her from doing such a horrible thing.

Several years later she married a great guy and became pregnant. Wonderful news! Unfortunately, early into the pregnancy she has a miscarriage. A short time later, she became pregnant again. This time, they had a beautiful daughter!

Shortly after her daughter was born, she was told her older sister had cancer and didn’t have long to live. Sadly, her oldest sister passed away at the young age of 36.

Again, depression set in. She questioned God on why and how he could let this terrible thing happen. Her sister had 2 young beautiful children. Why didn’t he take her instead of her sister? She would have given anything to get her sister back.

However, this was not God’s plan!

Unfortunately, this little girl now a lady in her 30’s, turned her back on God. She became resentful toward God, doubting and wondering if He really existed.

Sadly, after 10 years of marriage, she asked for a divorce from her husband. He knew she was struggling within, as he too was raised in a Christian home. He granted her wish for divorce. She and her ex-husband both loved their daughter and kept in communication on what was best for her.

She met and dated another guy. She married this guy thinking she was in love again and he could help her raise her daughter as he had 3 wonderful children of his own. Sadly, this marriage ended after 13 years of hardship and struggle.

She was scared and afraid to be on her own. How could she survive? She wasn’t making enough money to raise her daughter on her own. How could she provide for her daughter, find good babysitters while she was working, etc… She was afraid and not sure she could be independent.

At this point, her sister gave her and her daughter a place to stay until she could get back on her feet. Her sister had been there on several occasions before in her time of need as well.

The young lady moved on with her life. There were times when she and her daughter were not sure if they would have food on their table or a roof over their head. However, she worked hard and became independent and provided for her daughter.

Where was God? Did he still love her? Yes, he did! He was there with her all the time even though she had doubted Him.

This lady now in her late 40’s started going back to church. She asked God for forgiveness. She was sorry she ever doubted Him. He had been there all the time. It was her who turned away from Him.

This lady went on to college. She put in long hours each day, working 4 part time jobs and going to school full time. She graduated with honors earning an Associate’s Degree in Early Childhood Education.

She eventually found a fantastic guy! Wow, this guy is awesome, she thought! However, is she ready to get married again? Is this in God’s plan? He has 4 beautiful children and 6 beautiful grandchildren. Does she want to be a grandma? Lot’s of questions!

Yes, she did it! Asking God for guidance, she accepted his proposal. They were married! The 2 families have blended making a wonderful, beautiful family!

At times this lady still questions God and wonders if He still loves her. In quiet moments and in her heart, she knows that He does.

God loves her!

How do I know?

This little girl…

Is me!

Am I perfect? NO! Only Jesus was perfect. He accepts us as we are. We only need to believe and put our trust in Him.

I have poured out my heart in this blog… In closing, I want you to know…

God is real!

Jesus loves me and you!

Do some soul searching, take time to talk to God, read your Bible, ask questions, search for truth, and…

Just believe!

ABC’s of Finding Inner Happiness

I am interested in helping you find your inner happiness! Why? Because I have been in your shoes. Yes, we all need to find our inner happiness and peace. I have been through tough times during my life just as everyone else. Yet, I chose to find happiness. I choose to find happiness every day.

You can choose to find happiness. Happiness comes from within. Not from money, things, friends, family, pets, or places.

You might be asking, “How do I find my inner happiness”?

I don’t know. What I do know is that it is possible to find it. I have come up with ways to hopefully help you find your inner happiness.

Take time to try these ABC’s and see how you feel! Best of luck!!

Accept yourself!!

We are all different. We look different, our skin is a different color, our hair is a different color, we wear different clothes, we go to different places. Accept yourself for who you are!

Be kind!

Kindness is how we can help others while helping ourselves feel better.

Clear the clutter!

Clear your mind, spirit, car, home, and anything else that is cluttered. Get organized.

Don’t sweat the small stuff!

No mater how big a problem feels to you, it’s small compared to the universe.

Exercise!

Take at least a 30 minute walk every day.

Faith!

Faith is what we have even though we can’t see the outcome yet.

God!

God can be several things. A “Higher Power” or Good Orderly Direction. Which direction will you choose? The good or the bad?

Help others!

Helping others will help you realize that you’re not the only person struggling with things in your life. Volunteer at a local shelter, food bank, call someone to check on them, or simply open the door for others.

It’s all small stuff!

Just breathe!

Know when to keep quiet!

Sometimes we may talk before we think. Stop for a moment and ask yourself, “How would I feel if someone said that to me”?

Love yourself!

If you can’t love yourself, how can you love someone else?

Mindfulness!

Be mindful of your feelings, be mindful of others, be mindful of nature, be mindful of the good things in life.

Never give up!

Regardless of how bad you feel, don’t ever give up!

Open your heart!

Don’t be afraid to let your heart be your guide.

Pace yourself!

Don’t be in such a big hurry to get through life. Find the pace that’s right for you.

Quiet time!

Find a quiet spot and take time to be quiet. Listen to your surroundings. Can you hear anything? If so, what do you hear?

Reflect!

Reflect on your life. What might need changed? How can you be a better person? Strive for excellence, not perfection!

Stop stressing!

Take time to be alone!

Understanding!

Voice your opinion!

First, it’s ok to voice your opinion. Use compassion instead of blurting out what you think. We don’t have to agree with everything we see or hear. Second, don’t hold anger inside. Find a calm way to vent. If you hold anger inside it affects your health, relationships, and can eventually cause death.

Worry less!

X …marks the spot!

If you miss the mark the first time, try again.

Young at heart!

Find something fun to do every day. Stay forever young!

Zzzz!

Get plenty of sleep every night. Depending on your age, you should get at least 6 to 7 hours of sleep every night.

I wish you the best in finding your happiness!

Woodstock 50 years later!

The Woodstock 50th year anniversary celebration of the original Woodstock was conducted August 16th through 19th, 2019. I attended this event with my husband to see what the hype is all about. I was only 6 years old when the original Woodstock took place. I had heard of Woodstock but never realized the important things this event added to our culture.

The Woodstock Music Festival began on August 15, 1969, as half a million people waited on a dairy farm in Bethel, New York, for the three-day music festival to start. Billed as “An Aquarian Experience: 3 Days of Peace and Music,” the epic event would later be known simply as Woodstock and become synonymous with the counterculture movement of the 1960s. Woodstock was a success, but the massive concert didn’t come off without a hitch: Last-minute venue changes, bad weather and the hordes of attendees caused major headaches. Still, despite—or because of—a lot of sex, drugs, rock ‘n’ roll and rain, Woodstock was a peaceful celebration and earned its hallowed place in pop culture history.

Woodstock was held in the town of Bethel, NY surrounded by the Catskill Mountains. Concert goers were a diverse group of people and experienced bad weather, muddy conditions and a lack of food, water and adequate sanitation. Even though there were approximately a half million people in attendance, the concert went off without too many issues. Only 2 deaths were reported. One person was run over by a tractor as they had fallen asleep and the driver didn’t know they were there. The other person died of a drug-related incident.

Woodstock 1969 performers included Arlo Guthrie, John Sebastain, Santana, The Greatful Dead, Janice Joplin, Creedance Clearwater Revival, The Who, Jimi Hendrix, and Jefferson Airplane. The festival lasted for 3 days regardless of sunshine or rain and lack of food and water.

Festival goers were a diverse group of people, some were called “hippies.” It was the end of an era of the civil rights movement. In an era of much unrest, protests, and the Vietnam War, this event gave concert goers a way to escape into music and to spread unity and peace. A motto some used was “make love, not war.”

August 16th – 19th, 2019 was the 50th anniversary celebration of the original Woodstock! This was a 3 day event that included several of the great musicians that were at the original Woodstock 50 years earlier. These included Santana, Blood, Sweat & Tears, and John Fogerty from CCR.

This time around, concert goers had to pass through metal detectors and were only able to take in clear plastic bags and purses of a certain size. This is due to the recent shootings around the world. I am grateful that I did not see anything terrifying happening at this event, such as a shooting. It appeared that people of many diverse cultures were in attendance and were enjoying themselves. Ages ranged from young children to older adults that had been in attendance at the original Woodstock. Now and then I could smell marijuana which is customary for a concert such as this. A lot of making new friends, dancing and singing went on regardless of the weather.

We drove 8 hours to stay the weekend in New York so we could attend this event. Yes, we also sat in the rain for several hours the 3rd night of the event. We had to clear the field before the concert and was told to return to our cars until the inclement weather subsided. Most people did as was told but we were rebels and hung out near the restrooms with others. Yep, we were rebels. We sang and danced for 3 nights in a row.

I was amazed to hear the stories from Santana and John Fogerty – how they had gotten invited to perform at the original Woodstock festival, the people they saw at the concert and the events that happened during that awesome weekend. John Fogerty told us that they had to be taken by helicopter to the event because of the traffic jam and the amount of people in attendance made it so they couldn’t get to the stage. He said the helicopter was not what he expected. It was only a 2-seater.

All in all I was tired by the end of this weekend event, yet I laughed as I thought about the original Woodstock…

I’m glad I was only 6 years old when the original Woodstock took place because I would have been out there enjoying myself in the ’60s as the other party goers were doing back then. Here are a few photos of myself and my husband:

Woodstock is perhaps best described by Max Yasgur, the humble farmer who lent his land for the occasion. Addressing the audience on day three he said, “…You’ve proven something to the world…the important thing that you’ve proven to the world is that a half a million kids, and I call you kids because I have children who are older than you are, a half a million young people can get together and have three days of fun and music and have nothing but fun and music and God bless you for it!”

I realized that the original Woodstock was not a bad thing. It was to bring people together. We need to realize this in today’s world. There is too much anger and hatred in the world today.

Woodstock is not about sex, drugs and rock-n-roll, it’s about unity, peace and love!!

Source: https://www.history.com/topics/1960s/woodstock

Photos: Property of Janet G. W.