Washing Dishes

27 Jul

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Author, Poet and ArtistI have almost always washed dishes, sometimes I had help, sometimes not. When I was a child, Mother called on me when the restaurant got too busy for her, Dad, and a waitress, if we had one, to handle. My brother washed dishes with me. Usually I washed and he dried. To amuse ourselves we bickered or stacked the dishes in the drainer as high as possible stopping just before they began to topple. We called it making castles. Our parents paid us 25¢ an hour. One day I was at my friend, Patricia Franklin’s house for supper. I loved the Franklins, a big catholic family with five boys and one girl. The girl, Patricia, was my best friend, and I had a crush on one of her brothers. He didn’t have a crush on me.

Usually, Patricia and I washed the dishes after supper when I was there. The Franklins 1obviously had other arrangements when I wasn’t. On this summer evening, when I went into the kitchen to start on the dishes, I figured somebody would follow. To my surprise, no one came. I washed all the dishes by myself and left them to dry piled majestically into a fine castle. I got a lot out of the experience. For one thing I was pleased that my skills were such that someone besides my own family needed me. For another, being so responsible make me feel like a grown-up. The third thing was that I felt I was expressing my regard for the family and they would all pleased with me. I don’t know whether that ever happened, because I’m not sure they knew they had a martyr in their midst. Of course, their being Catholic, I wouldn’t be even a minor martyr compared to the ones the had read about. But I felt good about myself, anyhow.

A restaurant customer once said I was the chief cook and bottle-washer. I couldn’t claim the first part-but the second part was true. I have been washing dishes for 70 years. Every country on this globe has people who can make the same claim (if they have dishes, and more to the point, if they have food).

Now there’s only Bill and me. Together we keep the kitchen moderately clean. I’m glad I have things like that to do. I heard a story once from a friend who visited a rehab center. She gave a talk and after refreshments, one of the elderly women took her plastic cup over to a sink where she slowly and lovingly washed and dried it. You see, she had no home to care for anymore. I’m glad I have jobs to do even now. I thank God for dishes and for everything that goes with them. Also I thank him for my electric dishwasher, even though one of us has to wash them by hand before we put them in or they won’t come out clean.

Granny~Part 3

26 Jul


Judy Wills



I’ve mentioned before that Granny was a great seamstress. I don’t know whether or not she made Mother’s wedding dress, but it is quite possible.


And remember – she and both of her daughters (my Mother and Aunt Jessie) all three worked in the Rochester Handkerchief Factory in San Antonio for a number of years. So she was well-versed in the art of sewing, and with a machine.

I know that she was partly responsible for teaching me to sew fiesta dresses (please see my post on December 9, 2012).

I remember my brother, Bill, telling me how she would make Western shirts for him. Seems she had the pattern for a long-sleeved western-style shirt on hand. He would go to Sears or Penney’s or a fabric store where they had fabric by the bolt, and he would purchase 3½ yards of fabric of his choice. He would take it to Granny, and she would sew up that shirt in no time. Bill had a “kit” that enabled them to anchor pearl topped snaps on the shirt. They would get together; Granny would mark off where the snaps were to go; and Bill would make the attachment. Fun time for both of them, and lots of shirts in his closet.

Remember now……Granny had an old treadle Singer sewing machine.

She did all this work on that machine. I seem to remember it was “commercial grade” – they probably purchased it from the handkerchief factory. I believe in later years they removed the treadle and upgraded to an electric motor. But I’m not sure about that. One thing I really do remember about that machine is that, off to the left side, was a long button drawer. And it had tons of buttons in there – all kinds, colors and shapes.


I would spend hours just sifting through those buttons. It was such fun for a child. (Don’t be alarmed – I never swallowed any!)

Bill told me that Granny also made him an “Ike” jacket, which was very trendy during that time.


She made it out of red corduroy – and he loved it! He had a pair of red corduroy pants to go with it, and he wore that outfit to school. He thinks that is what captured DiVoran’s attention after they had met. Interesting story, huh?

I also remember that she made a turquoise velveteen jumper. I wore it a lot.7

She also made a turquoise wool coat for me –


and later a blue wool coat. And along with those, was a turquoise bathrobe. Think I might like the color turquoise?

~~~~~~~~~~To Be Continued~~~~~~~~~~

Hurry…and Wait!

24 Jul

From the Heart

Louise Gibson

Louise Gibson

Why do we discipline ourselves to always be on time for appointments
when we know in our heart we will have to wait?

To me it is a matter of courtesy.
When we die, I know God will meet us at the Pearly Gate.
He is a God of perfection.
I don’t expect him to make us wait.

Jesus bids us “Come unto me all ye who are weary and heavy laden
and I will give you rest.”
Such welcome words to a tired soul. It’s true.
I’ve already put him to the test.

Do you have a problem?
Take it to the Lord in prayer.
Free yourself of worry.
You’ll find true peace and comfort there.

Our Greatest Fear

22 Jul Featured Image -- 7360

Old Things R New:

Due to technical issues, Bill’s post won’t be available today. I am sharing this personal story and advice written by my FB friend, Mark Myers

Originally posted on Life in Portsong:

What is your greatest fear? What is it for you – that thing that gives you shudders just to think of it? Thunderstorms? Dogs, snakes, spiders? Heights or maybe confined places? Perhaps it is something psychological like public speaking, failure, or being alone. Most of us are afraid of death. Everyone has something they fear in varying degrees – even Chuck Norris.

Your list of fears might be long or it might be short.

While I don’t love snakes, I know my greatest fear is being eaten by a shark. What are the odds, right? I go to the beach one week out of the year and stay in the surf. Oh, I wade out and play. But I always I keep a wary eye on the horizonjaws-poster and make sure there is at least one person bobbing between me and the deep blue. I call him chum and he is…

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Tips to live a satisfied life. | Janet Perez Eckles

21 Jul

Tips to live a satisfied life. | Janet Perez Eckles.

The missing rings~Part 1

20 Jul

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Author, Poet and ArtistIf you’ve ever had anything stolen, you have probably experienced the emotions and imaginations that plague victims everywhere. I always kept my engagement and wedding ring (which had been fused together by a jeweler fifty-seven years ago) on the top of my dresser on a solid glass ring holder along with a dinner ring left to me by Bill’s mother. The rings had a history together. Bill’s aunt gave him the diamonds for my rings when he wanted to get engaged. Later Bill’s mother wanted new rings and asked if I’d mind if she had hers made like mine, only in yellow gold. I didn’t mind. We didn’t even live in the same town any more. After Bill’s dad died, his mother again changed rings, only this time, she took the diamonds from her engagement and wedding rings and had them made into a beautiful dinner ring. When she went home to Heaven she left them to me. I’d been wearing both for many years, but only wore them when I went out so that they didn’t get in my way when I cooked, typed, or washed my hands.

One day, I was rushing to go somewhere on time and because the rings were always the last thing I put on, I reached for them. They weren’t there, but Bill’s wedding ring, which I sometimes wear was. I thought I recalled hearing something fall down behind the dresser, so I knew they were safe. I put Bill’s ring on and left. I figured I would find them later. Better yet, I would wait until somebody big, strong, and younger than us came over and could move the dresser. Bill has shoulder issues and my chiropractor doesn’t want me scooting heavy things.

That day I was having lunch with my daughter, but I decided not to tell her about the rings because I’d soon have them in hand and there was no need to worry her. It took several days before I even told Bill. The next morning while I was out for my walk he moved the dresser to look for them. They weren’t there. I moved the dresser myself to look for them, which was not too smart.

I then started looking in earnest. I looked all through the house, went through the dresser drawers. They needed to be organized, anyway. I looked through my few purses, checked every pocket of every garment I own, and thoroughly searched the car. No rings anywhere.

wedding-ring on satin jpg

Granny~Part 2

19 Jul


Judy Wills



I’ve mentioned before that my Dad was 20 years older than my Mother. When Mother had been dating Daddy for a while, she showed Granny a picture of Daddy, and Granny exclaimed: “Why…..he’s an OLD MAN!”   But that didn’t really make any difference to Mom and Dad, even though he was only six months younger than his mother-in-law.


Granny was really a good cook. And back in those days, more women stayed home and did the cooking for their families, than we do now. For some reason, I remember being in San Antonio with Granny and Aunt Jessie, and the smell that I remember is one of Frito Lay Corn Chips™ that she had spread out on a cookie sheet and warmed in the oven, because they had become “limp” from the moisture in the air. Heating them in the oven would “crisp” them up again. It was a unique smell, and one I’ve not smelled since. I guess Frito Lay now has a better way of sealing their packaging.

I remember that whenever I had the flu or strep throat (which I had a lot as I was growing up!), she would make a pot of potato/onion soup for me to eat. It was so good and was just what I needed when I didn’t have much appetite. Unfortunately, I never got the recipe from her. I have a recipe for a delicious potato/leek soup (from my wonderful sister-in-law, DiVoran), but it just isn’t quite what Granny made, but as close as I can come without Granny’s recipe.


One of my favorite things to eat is popcorn. I remember one time when I had either the flu or a very bad cold, and Granny was staying at our house. She asked what I wanted to eat, and I told her a BIG bowl of popcorn! She popped it up, fixed it just the way I liked it – lots of butter and salt – and brought it to me. Unfortunately, my sinuses were so stopped up that I couldn’t taste anything – and the popcorn held no appeal to me. To say that she wasn’t happy with me, goes without saying.

Granny had a terrific sense of humor.


She could tell a joke with the straightest face – then just howl with laughter when I couldn’t tell if she was joking or not.  I’ve seen this look of mischief on her face so many times. She was such fun.


Aunt Jessie always had a dog around the house. And she and Granny both loved those dogs. They came to Albuquerque with Ginger, a beautiful red Cocker Spaniel.

I don’t remember just when Ginger died, but I do remember when they got Trixie – a little Pug. As my Mother said when Trixie was just a puppy – “She’s so ugly she’s cute.” And she was.


As Trixie got older, along came Bubbles – a black Poodle.



They were all fun dogs. We had cats at our house, and dogs at Granny and Aunt Jessie’s house – so we had the best of both worlds.


Granny (Addie) with Judy and Bill Lites, 1956

~~~~~~~~~~To be continued~~~~~~~~~~

Are you in love? Let me count the ways.

17 Jul

From the Heart

Louise Gibson

Louise Gibson

” Agape” is self-sacrificing-
You lay down your life for your brother.
“Romantic” is emotional.
Your heart is filled with affection for another.

When you love you don’t try to keep score.
You give of yourself freely-
especially to those you adore.

A good way to have arguments
is to fight fair.
” Help me to see what I am not seeing”
It will quickly clear the air.

Love is inspiring-
It brings out the best in you.
Devotion and sacrifice will follow.
“To thine own self be true”.

Love is the most powerful emotion in the world.
Love is the most powerful emotion in life.
If all of God’s creation would lay down their arms
It would put an end to world strife.

I Corinthians 13:4-13 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil, does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails. But whether there are prophecies, they will fail; whether there are tongues, they will cease; whether there is knowledge, it will vanish away, For we know in part and we prophesy in part. But when that which is perfect has come, then that which is in part will be done away. When I was a child, I spoke as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child, but when I became a man I put away childish things. For now we see in a mirror, dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part, but then I shall know just as I am known. And now abide faith, hope, love, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Midnight Excitement Part 2

15 Jul

A Slice of Life

 Bill Lites

Bill Small Red Plane



The helicopter left the scene and officers began to return to their cars, so I assumed the excitement was over and went back to bed. My neighbor told me that later, after I had gone back to bed, they retrieved a pickup truck and an unmarked police car from the woods, and carried them away on a tow-truck. I had only seen what was going on in the street in front of my house, but my neighbor also informed me that she had seen and heard Sheriff’s vehicles on the power line sand clearing (trail) that runs alongside her house while all this activity was going on. That apparently was where the police officers/sheriff deputies had finally apprehended the suspect.


And now for the rest of the story!

 A couple of days later I was able to view the 30-minute Sheriff’s Department helicopter video of the chase and discovered that the suspect was driving a pickup truck during the chase, and that the small dark car (with its lights off) was actually an unmarked police car at the front of the chase. When I had first been awakened and looked out the window, the suspect’s truck had already passed our house and rounded the corner, and I had thought the unmarked police car (with its lights off) was the suspect’s car. And, when I saw the two cars facing in opposite directions in the intersection, it was really two police cars, and the two officers must have been trying to work out their next move in the chase of the suspect. I also learned that, before racing thru our quiet little neighborhood, the suspect had been chased through a fatal hit-and-run police crime scene on U.S. #1, where he hit two police cars and nearly hit at least one officer. The video also showed the truck being chased off the paved streets into the woods and onto a power line clearing (trail) and a walking trail, where at one point a second person jumped out of the truck and ran off into the woods.


In a subsequent newspaper article, I learned that at some point in the chase, the suspect stopped long enough for deputies to attempt to arrest him. As they approach his truck, he refused to exit his vehicle and suddenly accelerated, ramming into a deputy’s car and speeding away. When the suspect was finally apprehended, having gotten stuck in the deep sand portion of the power line clearing (trail), he resisted arrest to the extent that officers had to TASER him. So, that was why the EMTs had been called, to make sure the suspect was OK after having been TASERED. That same newspaper article listed the following charges that had been filed against this suspect:

 ‘Grand theft of a motor vehicle, DUI with property damage, driving while license suspended/revoked/canceled with knowledge of first offense, reckless driving, leaving the scene of an accident without giving information, four counts of aggravated assault of law enforcement officers with a weapon or firearm, two counts of aggravated fleeing or eluding an accident with injury or property damage, and one count each of fleeing or eluding with lights, siren, high speed or recklessness.’

 And if that isn’t enough!

 Today we learned, on the local NEWS, that Law Enforcement Authorities believed that the suspect, driving another vehicle, was the same person who hours before the chase I had witnessed, was the one who had caused the death of a motor cyclist on U.S. #1, and fled the scene. This was the very crime scene location on U.S. #1 at which the suspect, in the stolen truck, later had been chased through, hitting two police cars, before being chased into and through our neighborhood.



 Now that’s what I call some real “Midnight Excitement” part of which had taken place right here in our very own quiet little neighborhood!


—–The End—–

A Third Option

13 Jul

My Take

DiVoran Lites

Author, Poet and Artist

Sometimes when we go to a doctor and we’re not sure the doctor knows what he’s talking about, we decide to get a second opinion. It’s the same with making a personal decision. We can study and work at making the right one, but we may not be able to come to a solution without asking for advice from a friend. That’s all right, there is safety in consulting together. But there is another way.

A general of the Israelite army, Joshua once said,

“As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.”

It turned out that Joshua did serve the Lord in every possible way. Title of picture that comes with this one is Jericho. It’s the walls of Jericho and the trumpet players.

Jerico Small

One day, Joshua knew that his army was supposed to occupy the walled town of Jericho, but he wasn’t quite ready to make his move. Suddenly, he looked up and saw a big man standing in front of him with a gleaming sword in his hand. Joshua asked, “Are you on our side, or on the side of our enemies?”

“Neither, “ said the man. I am here as Prince of the Lord’s host. Take off your shoes for you are on holy ground.” Joshua took off his shoes and stood ready to listen to anything the Lord had to say.

In his commentary, Matthew Henry says this big man was the same one who came with three others to Sarah and Abraham to tell them they were going to have a baby in their ninetieth decade of life. It was actually Jesus who visited them and now he had come to see Joshua.

Jesus told Joshua that God had secured Jericho for the Israelites and he told him exactly how the army was to claim their victory. There was no need for Joshua to strategize or plan, no need for him to consult his officers. The Lord was in charge.

You may already know what happened at Jericho, but if you don’t, you can read all about God’s surprising action in the Holy Bible in Joshua Chapter 6.

Now, think about it. Could Joshua or any of his men have come up with the plan they saw worked out by the Lord? Never in a million years. And what if they had been able to imagine it? Do you think they would have had success carrying it out? Not at all. If you don’t know the story, please read it in your Bible in The Book of Joshua Chapter 6.

No one but God knew and no one but God had the power to carry out the plan. The answer he gave transcended anything a human could have thought up or accomplished. What an adventure for the humans involved!

Dear one, do you know that you and I can experience miracles every day. They may not be what we expect. Maybe they aren’t even what we think of as miracles, but if we are open to God working in our lives, we can experience surprise, synchronicity, and serendipity every day. All we have to do is forget plotting and planning, and forget asking advice from our friends. The more we practice hearing from God and following His leading, the more exciting our lives will be. Let’s do it, let’s ask for that third opinion.

Joshua, Chapters 5 and 6.


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