Sunday, April 27, 2008

May is Older Americans Month

From the Department of Health and Human Services Administration on Aging

History of Older Americans Month
When Older Americans Month was established in 1963, only 17 million living Americans had reached their 65th birthdays. About a third of older Americans lived in poverty and there were few programs to meet their needs. Interest in older Americans and their concerns was growing, however. In April of 1963, President John F. Kennedy's meeting with the National Council of Senior Citizens served as a prelude to designating May as "Senior Citizens Month."

Thanks to President Jimmy Carter's 1980 designation, what was once called Senior Citizens Month, is now called "Older Americans Month," and has become a tradition.
Historically, Older Americans Month has been a time to acknowledge the contributions of past and current older persons to our country, in particular those who defended our country. Every President since JFK has issued a formal proclamation during or before the month of May asking that the entire nation pay tribute in some way to older persons in their communities. Older Americans Month is celebrated across the country through ceremonies, events, fairs and other such activities.

Take the time this month to recognize the older americans that have contributed to your life in some way. What a rich heritage we have!!

Hyacinths....Favorite Flower of Spring

If of thy mortal goods thou art bereft,
and from thy slender store
Two loaves alone to thee are left,
Sell one, and with the dole
Buy Hyacinths to feed thy Soul.
-Muslih-uddin Sadi, Persian Poet

Thursday, April 24, 2008

What a Hectic Month It's Been

For those of you who visit my blog frequently, I apologize that there have been no new additions for a couple of weeks. Since I last wrote to all of you, I have celebrated my 25th wedding anniversary, attended several track meets, spoke to a group of senior citizens about my trip to India, visited my daughter twice in Strasburg, mourned with my son and his friends at the loss of one of our West Branch students at a track meet, and tried to keep up with all my regular routine activities. Life is very fast-paced and full in my little world.

Just to catch you up..............Keith and I celebrated our 25th wedding anniversary on April 15th. I can't believe it's been that long. Time has quickly flown by. We spent the day in our favorite getaway.....Amish country. I have to say that the last 25 years have been memorable, exciting, and fulfilling. I hope there will be 25 least!!
Ethan is a senior at West Branch High School and is participating in the track program there for the 4th year. He throws the shot put and discus. Here he is warming up for throwing the discus. His Papa Hazlett has given him instructions and coached him for the last several years and he is now placing first in both the shot put and discus at most of our track meets.

Here is a picture of me making balloon swords for the children at the orphanage we stayed at during our time in India last year. They were thrilled!! I couldn't make them fast enough. In 3 days, I made over 300 balloon swords. My fingers were sore for days. What a great time we had there and how special those children are!! I shared my experiences with the senior adult group at a luncheon at Cuyahoga Falls Church of the Nazarene. The food was good, the company was great, and we had a wonderful time that day.
Ben and Lyndsay are doing great!! They are adjusting to married life and each other 24/7. It seems to be working out!! They have adopted a cat (Mocha) and have been having fun with their first pet. They have also made a committment to be a part of starting the Church of the Nazarene in Sugarcreek, which is going very well. Both of them, along with Ben's parents and grandmother, have decided to become members of the church. I am so excited about that. God has been very good to my daughter and has rewarded her faithfulness to Him beyond what we could have ever imagined. It has been fun going down to their house in Strasburg and visiting with them. It is a little weird though being told I don't have to help with the dishes and how to set the table!!

And most recently.........the unfortunate event of West Branch High School on Tuesday, April 15, 2008. While we were at our track meet against Canton South, Ryan Johnson, a member of our 4 x 800 relay team, collapsed and passed away after running his leg of the relay. It has been devastating to the family as well as the West Branch community. My son, Ethan, has learned some valuable lessons through this experience that he has shared with us. never know when life will be over and how important it is for your heart to be right with God. Second, family is very important and nothing in life can ever prepare you for one member no longer being there. I am very proud of Ethan and how he has reacted through this experience. Ryan's parents requested that the team go ahead and compete the following Saturday at the County Meet. Ethan chose to go and throw the shot put in honor of Ryan's parents wishes, but then he forfeited throwing the discus in order to make it back to Salem in time to go to Ryan's funeral. He told us that some things in life are more important than others and he wanted to honor Ryan as well as his parents. Ryan was also a good example of a Christian young man and spent a lot of time with his family and his church. We will be praying for the Johnson family as they adjust to a change in their lives. If you get a chance, please keep our community and the Johnson family in your prayers. Ryan is the 13th student/recent graduate we have lost since 2001.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

The Middle Child is........21!!

Tomorrow is my middle child's 21st birthday. It's hard to believe that 21 years have come and gone. I love all of my children equally but Timmy is a special one to me. You see....I prayed and asked God specifically to give Timmy to me. He has been a blessing to my life since the day he was born. Tim has struggled many times in life through many difficult situations. I have struggled by his side during those times. But my life without Timmy would be incomplete and void of any joy. Tim also brings lots of good times to our home. He loves it when the sun is shining. He is full of laughter, happiness, and a fun-loving spirit. Tim is now a nursing student at Kent State University. He is also an EMT with Clemente Ambulance in Youngstown, OH.

Timmy, you're a wonderful son, and that's why your birthday means so very much.....because it's a day to look back and celebrate all your past accomplishments.....a day to look forward and anticipate all your future successes. But whatever path you choose, whatever future you make for yourself, know that you are already a success in the eyes of your family. For it has been a great joy to have a son like you to love, to watch you grow and mature into a responsible young man. All that we have shared through the years has only reinforced what a very special person you are and how deserving you are of life's best. I prayed for you, Timmy, and the Lord has granted me what I have asked of Him. You are a wonderful gift.

With love,

Your Mom