Memoirs Of The Sidewalk Philosopher (Volume Two)

by SidewalkPhilosopher

Gratitude can turn a negative into a positive. Find a way to be thankful for your troubles, and they can become your blessings.

The Hunt Zoo
The Hunt Zoo
Lynette & Family
Lynette & Family
Chad & Ashley
Chad & Ashley
Carlyn & Family
Carlyn & Family
James & Family
James & Family

At the age of thirty-seven, I found myself raising four children, two of my own and two who were born of another woman. However, it didn’t take long for them to be as much a part of my heart as my own.

When I think back on the story of how we became a family, I sometimes marvel in its amazing reality.

I am so fortunate to have experienced such a wonderful creation of love and unity as our family of six during those early years of forming a blended family.

Blending A Family
This man had been my friend for half my life but I knew, as his wife, our relationship would begin anew. We were taking a tremendous chance on our faith in God, in one another, and our faith in the ability of our four children to cope with, and grow within, our mutual decision.

First Anniversary
First Anniversary

But these weren’t the only children to walk into my life unexpectedly.

In 1999, I became a foster mother to young girls who found themselves lost in the system that is supposed to take the place of a family.

Their trials became my trials and their tears became my tears. Every child needs both parents to become whole. No matter how much you love them or how hard you try, you cannot replace the parents they lost.

All you can be is a caregiver and a confidant. Be there to dry their tears and let them know that someone really does care.

Child Of My Heart (Volume One)
On a brisk, January evening, she entered my life, a tiny, little thing with hair of corn silk, still reeling from a failed adoption.

Child Of My Heart (Volume Two)
During the first month we had Audrey, we worked very hard to make her feel at home. It was difficult for her, at eleven, to start all over again in a home filled with strangers.

Child Of My Heart (Volume Three)
The night I first brought Audrey home, I promised, if she were still with me when she was grown, I would try to find her mother for her. I have kept every promise I have ever made to this little girl, save this one. And now she is grown. Where do I begin?

Child Of My Heart (Volume Four)
When I look back to that night, never would I have expected the magnitude of our meeting or what lay ahead for both of us. All I realized, at that moment in time, was my uncontrollable urge to protect you. It was overwhelming!

Foster Teen Parenting
Nothing prepared me for fostering teens!! I was given nine weeks of training from the Children's Home Society before taking my first foster child. There was a great deal of information to digest in a short span of time. It left me with the innocent impression that I was ready to tackle the job. Each child comes with its own individual 'set of baggage' and you never stop learning. Their trust has been broken time and time again and they anticipate that you will be no different. Never think for one minute that, since you raised teenagers of your own, that you are ready for a foster teen. You will disillusion yourself, setting yourself up for failure before you begin.

A Second Chance
On a hot day in July, during my sixtieth year, I came full circle, stepping back into my past, facing the pain I had tried, unsuccessfully, to leave there. It had been eight years since I had seen the young woman standing before me.

Audrey, 1989
Audrey, 1989
Audrey, Age 21
Audrey, Age 21
Audrey & Brittney
Audrey & Brittney
Brittney, Age 22
Brittney, Age 22

There have been other friends along the way who, though unable to talk, have their own story to tell. They were cherished right along with the other family members and deserve their space in my memories.

They have served me well and loved me with all their heart and being. 

Pound Puppy To Diva
If Raven knew about this article of tribute, I am certain you would see her smile with that "tooth" still standing at attention over her top lip. If she could, she would most probably say, with attitude, "Wow! From Pound Puppy to Diva in a short fourteen years!"

The Dog's Point Of View
Joey derived his name early on because of his habit when excited and happy. He will spin in place, lift his front legs to his full height, and then hop around like a Kangaroo in sheer pleasure. As a puppy, I am sure it was adorable. Now, at almost eighty pounds, it is quite a site to behold and always makes me laugh.

Raven
Raven
Whisper
Whisper
Joey
Joey

As I find myself reaching the golden years of my life, I discover I have learned a great deal about living and am so thankful for the life the Lord has given me.

Preston & Branson
Preston & Branson

Twenty-First Century Thanksgiving
How Do We Connect Today With Yesterday? We must first reconnect with our childhood and the innocence of the world we find there.

I have also grown to really value my country and what it stands for. I no longer take it for granted that it will always be as it has been for any of us.

Washington DC And Government
What do you actually know about Washington DC, our Constitution, and our Government?

Laus Deo "Praise Be To God"
Laus Deo! Two seemingly insignificant, unnoticed, Latin words. Out of sight and, one might think, out of mind, but very meaningfully placed at the highest point over what is the most powerful city in the most successful nation in the world

Allegiance To America, Under God
When I think of America, I think of home. This is the land where I grew up. These are the values that I share. Mine is the flag and country of which I have always held in my heart with great respect. I have always been proud to be an American! America has always been a country of great strength, yet, a country with a huge heart for others who are less fortunate or in need. It is a country where men have gone to war to protect our values and our way of life.

USAF Retirement, 1994
USAF Retirement, 1994

Life is what we make it, how we take it, how we live it, and how we look back on it at the end of each day.

Lived well, it will give us great joy in the remembering.

Lasting Happiness
What does it take to truly make you happy? Not just for the moment, but for a lifetime? Have you ever sat down quietly and really searched your soul to seek an answer to what brings lasting joy to your life? It is said, to make a man happy, you must, rather than add to his possessions, subtract from the sum of his desires. In other words, you must desire less and be happy with the things God has given you.

Reap Your Destiny
No trumpets sound when the important decisions of our lives are made. It comes silently, sometimes not even noticed, as choices are made daily by all of us. The day we are born, nature is at work. Character and destiny are her handiwork. She gives us love and hate, jealousy and reverence. All that we possess is the power to choose which impulse we decide to follow.

Smile Trooper!!!
Smile Trooper!!!

Now, I find myself a grandmother and wonder when that happened. I guess somewhere between growing up in my little town and yesterday. It boggles the mind when I look into my own mirror.

Granddaughters
They Engulf Your Heart!! I never expected to feel like that again and had resigned myself to that fact years ago. And then my baby had a baby…Oh, my!!

Choco Face
Choco Face
Age Seven
Age Seven

But life is what it is and you must enjoy each and every facet of your journey, reaping from it all the memories that you can. You also must learn to accept your loses, as well as the pitfalls along the way. Each step of the journey teaches you something valuable. You only have to take the time to pay attention.

Aging Gracefully
Have you ever thought much about what that actually means? How do you age gracefully? What is graceful about bent shoulders, wobbly knees, shaking hands, stumbling feet, a quivering voice, falling backwards, memory lapses or those dreaded wrinkles? Well, let’s analyze these, why don’t we.

Wheelin' And Dealin' With Grandma Mart
As she crossed the driveway, I could see that she was more feeble than at my last visit and gripped tightly the handle of her cane. But I also saw the same determination on her face that had carried her through life.

Grandma Mart
Grandma Mart
Elsie Harris
Elsie Harris

Wegener's Granulomatosis
How many know what this is? How many of you can even pronounce it? I can't. And yet, I have lost my dear friend, Elsie Harris, to this disease that seemed to come out of no where. Until Elsie's diagnosis, I had never heard of it or it's deadly affects and she would be the first to tell me to alert the public of this rare disease.

You must also learn to laugh at yourself and grow old as gracefully as you possibly can, carrying a smile on your face so that the wrinkles upon your face etch the sheer joys of living!

An Hour In My Life
How many of you have spent time in large hospitals, wandering around glass eyed, as you try to find your way from point A to point B? It doesn't take long before you discover you have sympathy for the poor little mouse who is placed into a maize by some high school science student preparing for the Science Fair!

Gabriel, July 2011
Gabriel, July 2011

If you have not yet read Volume One, please continue with me now to the beginning. Here is where my life and the person I am today was given birth and molded by the village of people who raised me.

Memoirs Of The Sidewalk Philosopher (Volume Two) Is A Series

Below Is The Link To Volume One
Cypress Gardens, 2009
Cypress Gardens, 2009
Updated: 04/03/2012, SidewalkPhilosopher
 
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SidewalkPhilosopher on 08/06/2011

Thanks, Nancy...I am so glad that you enjoyed this...love the new photo of Gabe!!

Nancy Lanier on 08/06/2011

I just now got to sit down and read this.
BEAUTIFUL page - ALL OF IT.

SidewalkPhilosopher on 07/23/2011

Thank you, Michey. I didn't realize you had a black out at your house! Wizzley had a black out, too, last night...couldn't get on. Too much use of electric that isn't accustomed to so much A/C! Glad you finally got back in and enjoyed my article. You are my greatest fan! :)

Michey on 07/23/2011

So, list night I read the vol 1 of the memoirs with great pleasure, and I just click on volume 2... in that moment an blackout occurred and PC, lights, everything electrical were gone for 19 hours, it was a nightmare living with a 96 year old and use only 2 flash lights over the night.
Now I am back, I really enjoy to have a classification for your beautiful writings, and all in just 2 posts. I like all of them but the "Allegiance To America, Under God" and "Child Of My Heart" series are my favorites.
I like the presentation as well!

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