Tuesday, November 24, 2020

Surprise!!

An amazing event happened last week, but you didn’t read it in the paper or hear about it on TV. Nevertheless, it was momentous. I turned eighty. That’s 80! And praise be I’m still here to tell about it!


A few weeks ago, Stewart told me to pack for a couple of days as we were going somewhere with Cyndi and Bill.

I was not to know where until the very last minute. Friday, my actual birthday, the four of us drove to a local ice cream shop for lunch where I had a humungous root beer float with a burger. Cyndi told the waitress it was my birthday so at the end of the meal we were presented with a gigantic sundae with four spoons. I think it was the first time in my life
I left ice cream in a dish! We were stuffed. 







Then we drove to a town called Matthews, NC, just outside Charlotte. There we spent the night at a hotel in preparation for my surprise to be held at noon on Saturday. I was still on a need-to-know basis. Saturday we all headed toward Charlotte and soon I saw signs for the Billy Graham Library. Ta daa! A tour of the library and grounds was our destination and what a destination it was!


We spent two hours exploring the many rooms of the library and learning about this much-loved man. In each room, video clips of Billy Graham’s distinctive voice and style of preaching reminded us why we loved him. One table held keys to the city of a dozen different cities around the world. He wasn’t just a US phenomenon. His biggest crusade ever was in Seoul, South Korea where 1.1 million people attended.

In one room, two pistols were on display with a placard saying that the guns were

turned in by converted gang members during Graham’s sixteen-week Crusade in New York City in 1957. If that was the extent of Billy Graham’s mission, it would have been amazing, but we all know he did much, much more.

After a stop for an ice cream milk shake at the dairy bar and a quick stop at Ruth’s Attic, the gift shop, we went outside and toured the grounds. It was very moving to see the graves of Cliff Barrows and George Beverly Shea as well as Ruth Graham’s headstone and Billy’s headstone. Hers reads, Under construction—thank you for your patience referring to a road sign she once saw and thought was most indicative of her life. Billy Graham’s headstone states, A preacher of the Gospel of the Lord Jesus Christ, which is how he wanted to be remembered.  A sign next to the headstone says that he once said, “Someday you will read or hear that Billy Graham is dead. Don’t you believe a word of it! I shall be more alive then than I am now…I will have gone into the presence of God.”

           

If you saw any of his memorial service on television, it was conducted outside the


Library with it’s huge glass window cross. It was a thrill to be standing on the same spot.

All in all, my surprise trip was inspiring, educational, and fun. On Sunday we stopped at a small town called Hemby Bridge. No relations that we know of, but we understand that a lot of people who live there are named Hemby.  

I have flown over a volcano, skydived from three miles up, been serenaded in a gondola in Venice, stood atop the Twin Towers, flown in a hot air balloon along the Rockies, climbed Diamond Head in Oahu, braved white water rapids, gave birth to four beautiful children, have extraordinary friends and family, and am now loved by the most wonderful man in the world. I may not like knowing I’m now 80, but I am one exceedingly fortunate and blessed woman. Thank you one and all.

 

Quote of the Day: By the time you’re eighty years old you’ve learned everything. You only have to remember it. George Burns

Saturday, October 17, 2020

Age is Just a Number

Ta daa! Do I have a Christmas/gift suggestion for you! The new Chicken Soup for the Soul book is about to hit the bookshelves. It’s called Age is Just a Number:101 Tales of Humor and Wisdom for Life After 60.


The even better news is that I have a story in it, called High Flying, about my sky diving adventure at age sixty-one.  You’ll prepare for the flight with me, go up into the air, jump out of the plane with an instructor on your back, soar through the sky like a bird, and land SPLAT on the ground with said instructor still on your back.

Every story in the book will make you smile, chuckle, or absolutely laugh out loud. Three other members of my writing group also have a story in this edition so I can attest to the fact that at least four stories will definitely brighten your day.

The book comes out on November 3, 2020 and will be available on Amazon or at Barnes & Noble.

As Chicken Soup says, the humorous and inspiring stories celebrate the fun and adventure of life after 60.Whether relaxing at home or traveling the world, married, single, working or retired, these dynamic men and women do it all. From relishing new experiences to turning back the clock, from finding a new love to finding new passions, the entertaining stories will inspire you to try something new, count your blessings and enjoy every moment of life after 60.

A great read for you and a super idea for a silver senior on your gift list.  

Happy reading!

Quote of the Day:  The older I get, the better I understand that every day is a gift. Joel Osteen