The wonderful state of Texas has a new license plate you can buy...and it is CAMMO!! You can also personalize it, as we already have! Check it out at www.myplates.com. The best part is that partial proceeds go to "Carry the Load" which is an organization that honors and benefits veterans, active military and all first responders.
According to an artical at WFAA.com, a former Navy SEAL named Clint Bruce co-founded the organization with fellow former SEAL Stephen Holly in 2011 because he was so angry that people had forgotten what Memorial Day is supposed to be honoring. Last year, Carry the Load launched a walking relay from West Point to Dallas, and invited anyone along the way to join and he ended up with about 500 walkers. This year, the murder of Bruce's close friend, Chris Kyle, focused national attention on SEALs and sacrifice. This year, we felt the deaths of 12 volunteer firefighters in West.
Clint Bruce said, "They did what they did because they thought America was worth it. We're just challenging America to prove it." And America seems to be looking for a way to show gratitude. Suddenly, thousands are stepping up to Carry the Load. "To go from 500 in 2011, to north of 20,000 this year is pretty spectacular. It's an encouraging thing about America."
Clint Bruce is just glad more Americans are pausing to consider the price of a peaceful day, and are willing to carry just a little of the load that was carried for them. For information on how you can help, go to www.carrytheload.org.
Bravo to Angelina Jolie for her brave decision to let the world know about her choice to have a double mastectomy to reduce her chances of getting breast cancer. She said she made the choice to be tested for the BRCA1 and BRCA2 gene mutations and found she had an 86% chance of getting breast cancer. Her mother died of cancer at the age of 56.
The test is a simple blood test. The aftermath is the tough part. If you have the mutations, a double mastectomy reduces your chances of getting breast cancer by 90 to 95 percent! Reconstructive surgery is usually done at the same time. For Angelina Jolie, this has been a three month process, but she can tell her six children that she has less than a 5% chance of breast cancer taking her away from them like it took her mother away from her.
How do you know if you should be tested? If you have a close family member (mother, sister, grandmother) who has had the disease you need to get tested. There is a very good chance your health care will cover the cost. And one of the things Angelina Jolie stressed is that reconstructive surgery has come a long way in the past few years.
We had lunch yesterday with our youngest child, Rachel, and were laughing over her selective memories from her younger years. It just made me think about how very different each one of our kids were.
Even when punishing them, we had to do that differently with each child! Adam, our first born, was always such a social kid, his worst punishment was being grounded to his room. He would sit right in the doorway and look out longingly. Eric was, well, stubborn. He gets that from his father who is the most stubborn man I have ever known. I knew Eric had to be tough and stubborn to have survived his early and difficult birth...but geez!! All I can say now is that that quality serves him well in the military.
Rachel's worst punishment always came from herself. She doesn't like failure. She never liked to disappoint, and Mike could make her cry with "The Dad Look". The most amazing thing about motherhood is finding, after all the raising is done, that you really LIKE the people your children have become.
That is something to hang on to during the long, sleepless nights with your little one in your arms. Happy Mother's Day!
How long can we say "It will never happen to me" before it happens to you? I am sooooo guilty!! Watch the Tim McGraw video and ask yourself if you have had a close call on the road with your cell phone? I have. In fact, I have done just what the girl in the video has done! Dropped the phone on the floor and tried to pick it up while driving. I did that just once and nearly killed myself and someone else as well! In fact, when I looked up I was heading straight for a car with 4 people in it. They looked terrified and I swerved just in time. But just how many chances do we get?
I know we talk about laws banning texting and driving, but we have got to start policing ourselves! We should not need a law to make us stop doing something that is clearly dangerous to ourselves and others. If you take your mind, attention or eyes off the road for even a second while going 70 mph in a vehicle you could die and take innocent lives with you! It only takes a second. I wish I could say that I NEVER look at my phone while driving...I can't. But I have promised myself that my phone will stay in my purse until I get to where I am going.
Shortly after we got to our cabin in New Mexico on Friday, we got a call from our neighbor. She wanted to warn us that there is a "medium sized bear in the area". She also told me that three four wheelers, with teenagers driving them, had been "herding" and chasing the bear. They finally treed the bear and left. It climbed down and the teenagers were back! Our neighbor told them she was going to call the Game Warden if they didn't leave the bear alone.
All I could think of is just how stupid are these kids? Even a "medium sized bear" can KILL them with one swipe of a paw!! I have a very healthy respect for bears. I read the book about bear attacks. It scared the *#+t out of me!!
Have you ever been in a conversation with someone who has just unknowingly given a great perpective on a situation you are in? They might not even have known anything about what you are going through but they say something that comforts you or helps you deal with it? I call those "divine appointments". I really believe that God sends people to you with a direct word from Him. He will use YOU for this purpose as well.
A year ago I had a fantastic opportunity to spend a week (the last week I would ever spend, as it turned out) with my mother-in-law, Maisie. She told me that every time someone took over doing something she had always done like Thanksgiving Dinner, birthday cake baking, or paying bills (even if it was just to help her out) she felt like she "dissappeared a little bit more". It just made me realize how we tend to marginalize our parents and grandparents as they age. I think THAT was a "divine appointment" God set up just for me.
As it turns out, everyone I have shared that story with has also needed to hear it for a special reason. Keep making those appointments Lord, and I will keep listening...and talking.
My dear friend, Rachel Dobbs, was in a car accident at the very deadly intersection of 158 and the Craddick Highway about a week ago. She was pretty banged up and her car was a total loss but she was ALIVE! We were talking about it at her son's wedding shower on Saturday night and she credits the fact that she took a Defensive Driving class in November with helping her minimize the accident as much as possible.
So I spent 6 hours Sunday taking an on-line Defensive Driving class. It has been 4 years since I took one and many things have changed about the class. It is no longer really about recognizing warning signs, etc. Now, defensive driving is about really DRIVING DEFENSIVELY! What a concept! I learned so much about how to minimize risks when approacing an intersection, how to create a cushion of safety around your automobile, what to do to avoid an accident, and how to stay in your "adult" mindset while driving.
Without question, the best thing to do to avoid an accident in almost every situation...SLOW DOWN. If you haven't taken a defensive driving class in the last couple of years...think about spending the 25 dollars, and the 6 hours in your pj's on the computer. You will get a discount on your insurance...and it just might save your life, like it saved the life of my friend.