I found a plush, warm, gray sweater that seemed to wrap itself around me with deep pockets and tried it on. It felt so good, but when I looked into the mirror I saw my husband behind me shake his head no. “No?” I asked. “Why not?”

Portrait of a young redhead woman in winter mountains.
Portrait of a young redhead woman in winter mountains.
Photo by dreamstime.com

“Because it’s gray and you’ve had a lot of gray days lately,” he said. He was right. The winter days have been rainy, dark and cold and it has definitely affected my mood.

I have to admit, I have a love hate relationship with winter. I love the cold air when I breathe it in and out of my lungs. I love warm sweaters and gloves, snow on the ground, a fire in the fireplace, hot chocolate and soup. …

When we lived in Texas, I had a friend who needed to write a paper about Hispanic Heritage Month for an English assignment. She asked me what I thought was the most important thing young people in the Rio Grande Valley needed to succeed in life.

A sign with “Don’t Give Up” in bold on the front.
A sign with “Don’t Give Up” in bold on the front.
Photo by Rosie Kerr on Unsplash

While I was thinking about the answer, she said everyone else had told her the answer was education. I agreed that education was definitely the answer for success in any person’s life, young or old, but there is something we must have even to reach that goal. It is hope.

Even parents with limited or no education can instil within their children the hope and determination to reach for higher goals than what they, themselves, have acquired. …

The little town where we lived outside of Augusta, Georgia was very small. There was an elementary school, a flower shop, a bank, a minute market and a family owned restaurant and, of course, many churches. We knew just about everyone in the community, and everyone knew our youngest son.

He was a friendly child, with whitish, blonde hair, who was always zipping around the neighborhood on his red bicycle. First thing every morning during the summer he would get dressed and off he would go for his morning ride. …

I ran across a good illustration this week that paints an excellent picture of how important it is to stop and think about what we do with the hours in our day. It was about a philosophy professor who wanted to teach his students a lesson that went beyond the classroom.

Image for post
Image for post
Photo by NeONBRAND on Unsplash

When his students begin to noisily arrive for his class, the professor stood patiently at his desk with just a few items in front of him.

After the bell rang and the young men and women settle down, he wordless picked up a large empty mayonnaise jar and proceeded to fill it with rocks right to the top–rocks about 2 inches in diameter. …

The flight attendant stood at the front of the plane mechanically, giving safety instructions for the flight. It was apparent that she could probably give those same instructions in her sleep because she had done it many times.

I had heard them many times before, but something she said caught my attention this time. “In the event of an emergency, the oxygen mask will drop from overhead. Put the mask over your nose and mouth. If you are traveling with a small child or an infant, put your mask on first, then help the child.”

Airline assistant talking to passenger.
Airline assistant talking to passenger.
Photo By https://elements.envato.com

It would be easy to think that the responsible thing to do would be to help the child with their mask first and then grab the dangling mouthpiece for yourself, but what she said made sense. …

A curious mouse visited a carnival that was in town. There were tents that contained attractions the likes of which he had never seen. The mouse entered one tent that was filled with thousands of mirrors in various shapes and sizes.

He ran from one to another, fascinated by all of the curious mice smiling back at him. He thought to himself, “This is a wonderful place, full of so many happy mice. I will come here as often as possible.”

As he left the tent, he came upon another mouse. “Guess what?” he exclaimed. “I’m not guessing anything. Whadda you want?” the other mouse snapped back. “I have just come from the most amazing place. You’ll love it.” “What’s so special about it?” asked the other mouse. “Just see for yourself,” replied the first mouse. “Trust me, you won’t be disappointed. …

What a wonderful time of the year! Color is everywhere, and everything has color, especially during these beautiful Autumn and Fall days. The variety of colors are endless, and it fills our world with beauty.

Children sitting on rock surrounded by tall grass.
Children sitting on rock surrounded by tall grass.
Photo By https://elements.envato.com

What would the world be without color? As an educational writer, that’s the question I sent to an elementary school recently. The answers ranged from no changing leaves, no beautiful flowers, no rainbows, and no jelly beans! What an awful thought!

“I think that the world would be depressing because you wouldn’t see the beauty of our world. Color plays an important part in our lives and the nature around us. For example, the colors of some animals attract mates, while the colors of other animals help them to protect themselves. Think about how the white coat of a polar bear blends with the snow. Chameleons can change their color to match the things around them This causes their enemies to have a hard time finding them.”

When morning came I felt the trail calling me and daring me to come see what was different each day. Sometimes the voice came from inside me and other times it came from my husband telling me we needed to get going.

Either way, I got up, got dressed, put on my shoes, a jacket that could be tied around my waist when the sun began to warm my back, some food and water in my pocket, and off we’d go.

Couple holding hands while walking in a field.
Couple holding hands while walking in a field.
Photo By https://elements.envato.com

We were living in West Virginia at the time. The trail was one long stretch one way until we reached half the amount of our walking time and then we turned around and walked back. It was like taking two different routes because what we saw going was different than what we saw coming back. …

Sympathy looks in and says, “I’m sorry.
Compassion goes in and says, “
I’m with you.

Sympathy looks in and says, “I would like to help.
Compassion goes in and says, “
I am here to help.

Sympathy says, “I wish I could carry your burden.
Compassion says “
Cast your burden on me.

Sympathy often irritates with many words.
Compassion helps and hears in quietness and understanding.

-Author Unknown

Empathy refers to feeling what another person is feeling. Sympathy means you understand what the other person is feeling even without feeling it yourself. …

Have you ever been tempted to take a ride in one of the guided horse carriages? It seems so romantic and

Horse drawn carriage.
Horse drawn carriage.
Photo by https://elements.envato.com

peaceful trotting through the city or a quiet park.

I think about how difficult it would be for a horse, taken from pasture, to be placed in a noisy city to be told where they should go. That is why the owners use blinders.

Blinders are leather flaps on the bridle that keeps the horse from seeing to the sides. It helps the animal to focus and stay on course.

Blinders were used on farm horses and mules to pull plows or wagons in the small farm community where I grew up. By limiting the horse’s peripheral vision he is not distracted by the surroundings, and the owner has better control. …


Deana Landers

I have had many roles in life — Pastor’s Wife, Nurse/Health Educator, Writer, Christian Speaker and Blogger @ https://www.morningcoffeebeans.com

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