It’s Hot

July in Texas is HOT.  As I was coming back from lunch today in my “hot” car, I was sort of complaining to myself about the heat.

Those complaining thoughts can grab you quickly.  I didn’t allow this “hot” complaint to linger.  I remember living in our farm house in Oklahoma with a swamp cooler. I remember when we got the first “refrigerated air” window unit.  I remember when I got my first house with central air conditioning.  Now I have a house that has two air conditioning units.  I am grateful.

There are those who might still have a swamp cooler, hang damp sheets on the open window and let the fan blow through, sleep on the patio or porch where there’s a little air flow.  I remind myself often to be grateful and remember when.

Many nonprofits organizations and for profit businesses help those in need of an electric bill payment, a new fan, or maybe a ride to go deposit check in a bank so an electric bill can be paid.  Remember those nonprofit organizations during these hot summer days.  Donate to them if you can.  Donate fans to re-sale shops or anyone having a fan drive. 

Also please remember Texoma Gives Day on 9/7/17 and donate generously to nonprofits registered to participate on this 16 hour day of giving.  6am to 9pm  www.texomagives.org

Stay cool.

www.texomagives.org!  

#texomagives

#wfacf   www.wfacf.org   940-766-0829    


All 50 States

It was a journey of over 16 years to complete. An adult daughter just barely into her twenties and her mama 26 years older challenged one another to complete the quest of being in all 50 states.

September 11th had happened and everyone, including the daughter and mom, was searching for some happy after tragedy had struck our great USA. Daughter was a flight attendant and mom was starting over in her career. When daughter was furloughed, she and mom traveled to many places with daughter’s airline ticket privilege and mom’s severance package. Each one’s travel bug got fully engaged during this time.

On November 11, 2001, both of them tore out a page from the United Airlines magazine as they were coming back from Hawaii. The map was a centerfold map of the United States. Each marked the states they had encountered. The challenge was struck that day. The guidelines included achieving at least one of three caveats: (1) have a meal (2) spend the night (3) make a memory. Flight attendant daughter couldn’t just land in an airport and call it a visit to that state.

June 29, 2017, daughter and mom flew to Fargo ND and ate a hamburger before they rented the car that would carry them 1,200 miles across Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan, Ohio, and West Virginia. Add to those 1,200 miles a ferry ride across Lake Michigan, a morning walk in Lake Michigan, a brat and beer at a Brewer’s baseball game, a one hour shopping spree in Mall of America, a lunch with nephew and cousin, dinner with friend (like family) in Zanesville OH, and a DARK ride in the West Virginia mountains dodging deer on every curve. Whew! They did it and were safely back in Texas on July 3, 2017.

What memories were made in these 5 days. TG, the Texoma Gives character, was traveling with the mom and daughter. Like Texoma Gives on Facebook and you’ll learn TG’s side of the travel story (sunbathing on Grand Haven Beach, Lake Michigan). There will be 12 or 13 posts of the trip in the next few days.


The Sound of Silence

Who among those reading this remember Simon and Garfunkel? Do you remember their song, The Sounds of Silence? 

I have recently returned from New York City where the Grammy Morgan tour of four stayed right on Times Square. As another song says, “….in the town that never sleeps.”   What a whirlwind five day trip we had. It was near perfect.

The obligatory frozen hot chocolate was consumed after our awesome viewing of the Broadway show, “Waitress.” While in Serendipity’s, there was a group in our small room who were so very loud one had to literally shout if they wanted to be heard. Our genteel group of southern women didn’t yell. We just stared and consumed our treat. I guess that goes loudness goes with a noisy, never-sleeping New York City.

What I know is that we had a fun-filled trip overflowing with love for each other and an appreciation of all that we saw and did…memories not soon forgotten. What will be forgotten are the LOUD voices while we consumed our frozen hot chocolate and the city noises. It was wonderful to be in NYC and even more wonderful to be back home in Texas and our Wichita Falls.

When September 7 rolls around this year in the Texoma area, I am hoping for noise and traffic (foot and on-line) as donors clamor to their cars to drive donations to our offices and or stroll to computers or other hand held devices to make donations to their participating charities. What we are hoping for this year on Texoma Gives Day 9/7/17 is to have donations from all 50 states (38 states in 2016)…even donations from New York City. Texoma Gives on September 15, 2016, from 6 a.m. until 10 p.m.   www.texomagives.org.

#texomagives

#nycrocks

#wfacf   www.wfacf.org   940-766-0829    


Where Ever You Go – There You Are

The quotes were on the physicians’ bulletin board as they stepped into the hallway off the physicians’ parking lot The hallway was long and to catch the doctors as they walked in, the log-in computer was there where they could check patients’ rooms, medical records was to the opposite of the sign-in computer so charts could be easily signed, and there was the information bulletin board.

On the bulletin, meetings for the month were posted, announcements were there for review, and a quote appeared in larger letters across the bottom of the board. I was responsible for posting and keeping this bulletin board current. There weren’t many comments about all the different quotes through the years but one stands out-Where ever you go, there you are.

This was the only quote I was ever asked to remove from the bulletin board. I did remove it and was then questioned by several physicians why that “cool” quote was gone. Who knows what button that pushed on that one particular person/doctor the day he or she read it. Isn’t that how life goes—one doesn’t know the story of another’s life and why any particular scenario (or quote) would set off a storm.

I still like the saying and wanted to share it today. I believe the saying is about living in the moment and knowing that only you are responsible for your happiness. I in no way believe that all situations are fair or equitable and there’s a lot that you or I can’t control. What we can control and take responsibility for is our reaction to and behavior surrounding the actions/words/situations confronting us. 

So remember, “Where ever you go—there you are” and I sure hope that on September 7, 2017, where ever you are that you’ll log on to www.texomagives.org and donate to a favorite nonprofit participating in 2017 Texoma Gives Day. It’s 16 hours of on-line giving to benefit nonprofits in 24 counties of N TX and S OK in the area we around Wichita Falls, TX call Texoma. Questions about Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation, Burkburnett Legacy Foundation, Texoma Gives? wfacf@wfacf.org 940-766-0829 #wfacf #texaomgives


Seasons of Friendship

The first weekend of May is a special time for a cast of friends with whom I am linked through decades of moments and memories. There is a three day gathering on this weekend where we re-connect, re-charge, and laugh until our sides hurt. Many of the friends live in the hometown and are retired teachers/school administrators. I get double pleasure with those because I catch up with them and on my hometown. Others of us live in varied Oklahoma towns and states. To make it easy for everyone, we try to stay centrally located in either Oklahoma or Texas.

Our gatherings have included such things as train rides, murder mystery weekend (the quietest one of our group was the guilty party), praying at our school mate’s chair at the Oklahoma City Memorial, wine tasting, community theatres, Budweiser plant adventure, demonstrating the hand jive no-stage at Branson, art fairs, scrapbooking, casino concerts, Amish dinners, cable cars, and weaving baskets. One of our May gatherings was held in Wichita Falls.

Many of us met in first grade or at earlier ages in Sunday School. We have kept the friendships alive through these annual gatherings. Nothing is as soothing to the soul as a warm hug from a seasoned person who still has the sparkling face of the one with whom you jump roped, took swimming lessons, rode horses, went fishing (complete with fish hook in one’s head), endured junior high boys, participated in high school antics, took off for college, hosted wedding and baby showers, sat at funerals together, planned countless class reunions…and still we laugh and play even at this age like we were still on the playground jumping rope!

Nonprofit organizations experience seasons with donors. Different aged donors have their preferred ways of donating. Younger donors will most likely be inclined to donate electronically and on the web. It is no surprise that just like banking and its transition to online banking, online donations will be a mainstream way for charitable giving in the future. Texoma Gives will spotlight online giving in a big way during its second Texoma Gives on September 7, 2017, from 6 a.m. until 10 p.m.   Can’t you see the seasoned donors keeping up with the spring and summer donors during this day of giving! All seasons of donors are encourage to log on to www.texomagives.org and learn more and to put 9/7/17 on their electronic calendars!

#texomagives

#wfacf   www.wfacf.org   940-766-0829    


It Runs in the Family…

 

A Dennis the Menace cartoon depicted a room in disarray, mom with broom and dust pan, and Dennis asking, “Didn’t I get any good traits from my dad’s side of the family?”

That was good for a short laugh and then the “thinking on Thursday” began.

Every doctor questionnaire one completes asks about family medical history. Adoptive situations sometimes has one dig for the birth family’s medical history. This medical history can alert caregivers to potential illness/maladies.   Do all medical factors run in the family?

Five kids in a family, have the same parents, and grew up in the same house. Three go to college, one goes to the military, and one wanders yet never leaves the childhood home. It seems that life choices can alter “it runs in the family to be productive, educated, and generous” mantra taught from an early age.

My growing-up family’s name has been said to be English with the meaning “craftsman.” My grandfather, dad, and uncle were carpenters. Both my brothers have/had those same skills—not taught—almost innate. Did that run in the family?

Let’s go back to Dennis the Menace cartoon. Maybe mom was scolding Dennis on being clumsy and breaking the lamp. If dad had been standing in the cartoon instead of mom, wonder what dad would have been saying to Dennis? Maybe it would be, “You know, Dennis, when I was your age, I also broke my mom’s favorite lamp. I know how that feels. Let me help you clean this up and then we’ll both go tell your mom.” Sounds like Dennis got some good stuff from his dad’s side of the family—caring for each other’s feelings. I hope caring for other’s feelings runs in your family.

#goodrunsinthisfamily #wfacf www.wfacf.org 940-766-0829


Doorknobs

A twenty-three year old mother traveled to Germany with a two year old and a baby. On the long leg from JFK to Frankfurt, the flight attendant moved the young mother’s two seats to a row with lots of legroom and helped her make a bed for the babies on the floor. Needless to say, this young mother was grateful beyond words as the small boys slept almost the entire way across the pond.

This young mother and boys met the Army dad in Germany. Life in Germany was a daily adventure and this adventure lasted almost four years. For anyone who has lived in a foreign country for any length of time, there are lots of similar life “things” and lots of different life “things.”

Take doorknobs, for example! The two year old wasn’t tall enough to turn a doorknob when he left the USA to live in Germany. He was five, approaching six, when the family was on a plane headed back to the United States. The family grew by one while in Germany. The two boys now had a baby sister who didn’t get a seat and was a permanent fixture on mama’s lap. The five year old had to go to the bathroom. The family was seated two rows from the bathroom door so five year old was allowed to go alone.

Time passed with no son reappearing. As the mother squirmed with nervousness, little sister began to fuss. With a crying baby, mom does to the bathroom door to inquire about five year old. “What is taking you so long, son?” Son: “Mama, I don’t know how to get out?” Mom: “Turn the doorknob.” Son: “What’s a doorknob? All I see is a round thing.” Mom: “Son, in Germany we had levers and in America there are door knobs. Take hold of the round thing and turn it.”   We learn to adapt to what is around us. Levers were the way to open doors for this five year while in Germany. Round things would be the adaptation to make in America.

There is always a door of opportunity waiting to be opened. Opportunities to help through sharing time, talent, and treasure. Many doors are opened each day at Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation. Thank all of you who have shared time, talent, and treasure and were willing to open doors—whether with a lever, a push button, or a round thing.   Questions about Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation, Burkburnett Legacy Foundation, Texoma Gives? wfacf@wfacf.org 940-766-0829 #wfacf #texaomgives


Stormy Weather

Spring has sprung and along with the budding trees and awakening perennials comes stormy weather. Our Texoma area of N TX and S OK is playing host to lots of storm clouds, rain, wind, and hail this week.

Isn’t this area blessed with dedicated and educated weather spotters? When storm clouds start rolling, spotters dig into their roles of watching, reporting, and keeping us informed. Additionally, very talented weather men and women from KFDX, KAUZ, and KSWO keep Texomans aware of storm worries.

I learned this morning that an Oklahoma City weather team made famous by Gary England, used a drone in W TX to document a tornado.   I wonder how much more weather knowledge will be gained by technology that advances each storm season.

We’re in tornado country. Other parts of the U.S. experience extreme blizzards, chinooks, hurricanes. NOAA is the key to keeping all of us advised with whatever weather is headed our way. I am grateful for all these different weather factions that play a collaborative role in our safety.

At Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation in Wichita Falls, TX, we have the Weather Spotters Fund that is used for expenses that could arise, e.g. replace technology on the towers, tower climbers, etc.   Charlie Byars, a seasoned weather spotter, is the advisor to this fund and from time to time folks and companies donate to the fund.    

Keep your eyes and ears open during this season of weather. We will be keeping ourselves weather aware while working at our new offices in Parker Square, 2405 Kell Suite 100, Wichita Falls, TX. www.wfacf.org   940-766-0829

#weatheraware   #KAUZweather   #KFDXweather   #KSWOweather   #wfacf      


The Ultimate Volunteer

Today I’m thinking of all the brave, community-loving volunteer firemen and women who have regular wage earning jobs and then “volunteer” their time, talent, and most times their treasure to serve in fighting fires. It’s fire season and there are fires raging in Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, and Kansas with many more areas predicted to have a bad fire season. I continue to tell this message—85% of all fire protection in the United States is VOLUNTEER.

For those who were raised in towns or cities, firetrucks use hoses to attach to fire hydrants and fires are battled. Country fires don’t have fire hydrants. There are hoses attached to tank trucks (many made from Army surplus trucks with tanks retro-fitted) or there’s a pump in a tank/pond/river/creek/lake that draws the water out to aid in the VOLUNTEERS fighting a fire that could save oilfield properties, homes, livestock, crops. It’s the volunteer firemen and women that I’m calling “the ultimate volunteer.”

I am asking you to donate, donate, donate to any and all volunteer fire departments that are raising monies through fish fries, raffles, garage sales, brisket/rib feeds, bakes sales (I hear there was a pie in Joy, TX that regularly brought $500).   You can also donate to the Volunteer Fire Department Fund here at Wichita Falls Area Community Foundation (WFACF). There are over 165 volunteer fire departments in the 18 N. TX and 6 S. OK counties that are served by this Fund at WFACF. Volunteer fire departments can seek grant funds once a year from this fund. During times of extreme fires, Emergency monies are made available that help the departments repair, replace, and replenish basic items—boots, pagers, windshields, melted tires, replenish gas supplies, etc.

www.wfacf.org 940-766-0829   We can tell you lots about volunteer fire departments. #volunteerfiremen #volunteerfirewomen #donatetovfds #wfacflovesvfds

 


As the World Turns

I have had friends through these working years that arranged their lunch hours so they could go home and watch the soap opera, As the World Turns, and/or taped it and watched all the taped versions on the weekend. At that time, we just thought that was binge watching. Now with Netflix, Amazon, Hula, etc. one can binge watch to a heart’s desire. Now back to the reason for this title.

It’s the last day of February in North Texas. I can count on one hand the number of times I have worn my heavy winter coat in the past 5-6 weeks. It’s supposed to be winter. I had found my long lost gloves and was READY for winter. It’s not too late. Winter could knock on our door any part of any day in the next 5-6 weeks.

It’s 70 degrees out today, there is a strong warm wind blowing, and it’s cloudy but there’s no rain in the forecast. I have two great windows in my new office so I was day dreaming watching the cars pass on Kell, listening to the wind, and thinking that “as the world turns” humans don’t control the weather—or anything—really.

As the world turns, who’s in charge? Well…recently our three year old granddaughter was not minding her mama. Mama firmly said, “Daughter, look me in the eye and tell me who is in charge!” Without a second’s hesitation, as it was reported to me, granddaughter put hand on hip and said, “Jesus!”

As your world turns today, enjoy the weather, whether hot or cold. Be kind to someone you don’t know. Be loving to your families, friends, and co-workers. We’re here for such a short time on this earth…let’s make it matter.

#makeyourdaysmatter #onedayatatime #wfacf #donatetodaytoanynonprofit