T + P + C = H

What is this?

No, it is not a new texting acronym nor is it a chemical formula or advanced math calculation.

So what am I trying to say with these four letters? What do they represent?

For those of you who have been following this blog site, you understand that this is my journey of courage through some rather difficult circumstances and events in my life. Time has moved forward yet the wounds still seem fresh every now and then.

If you ever experienced loss in your life, this message is for you. Here is the translation:

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Rough Start To Our Vacation

(this is the first of a series of stories from our recent cruise adventure)

Packing our suitcases, checking our list of necessary items for the trip, trying to stay healthy, and arranging for drop-off and pick-up transportation. All this for the start of our first cruise down the Pacific Coastline on the Grand Princess!

Excitement grew as each day drew closer to our embarkation date of April 1. Nothing was going to deter us from our wonderfully planned voyage. I was exceptionally excited as this would be my family’s first cruise ever! Finally, we could see what this cruising-lifestyle is all about.

Saturday morning arrived. We had to wait for my older son and his wife to arrive so that we can carpool together into San Francisco. Last-minute preparations and the loading of suitcases into the car with some extra room for their luggage.

My phone buzzed – it was my son calling probably to let me know they were almost here. Upon answering my phone, I heard the words that would deflate my enthusiasm.

Dad, we have a problem.

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The Storms of Change

“He who is without sin among you, let him throw a stone at her first.” – John 8:7

It is a shame that when change occurs, human nature acts out in a selfish manner. Who is truly entitled to cast blame and doubt on anyone except the blameless?

Yet no one is blameless even though some believe they are above the others.

Let us get deeper.

When devastation occurs in a person’s life such as the loss of a loved one, would you not agree that this is a “major storm” in life? Who would want such tragedies to occur? Who can we blame for our circumstances?

Who has the courage to choose resilience over resistance? Continue reading

A Very Special Christmas Gathering

 

The brisk sunny afternoon was the perfect welcome for the annual Christmas party that was about to begin. Relatives near and far converged upon this particular home which enjoyed the perfect backdrop of the San Francisco Bay Area. The Oakland hills greeted this extended family to a party expected to be filled with laughter, stories, and love that transcends four generations!

This much-anticipated family party was about to begin!

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Little Mary (part 1)

The August weather challenged my mind as I assembled my team for the Christmas production while coordinating thirty-six children ranging from ages 6-12. It was a small group of volunteers including a piano player to tap the notes for the children.

It would be my first experience organizing and conducting a children’s choir at church. I was up for the challenge in spite of the inattentiveness of the children. The plan was to create a musical production in less than four months. Many did not have stage experience or even participated in a full musical production. Many could not read musical notes or dance. Yes, it would be a first for everyone so let the fun begin!

Excitement filled the air and many older girls were practicing for the coveted part – Mary’s solo. There were other solo parts to be had but this one was the best in the production (according to the children). It was no wonder many girls lined up for their chance to win the lead solo (or at the very least, to be the understudy).

When the line of hopeful singers was exhausted, I asked if there were any more singers ready to try out for this special solo. Everyone looked around but no one raised their hand. Then my attention turned to someone sitting in the back of the room. Continue reading

A Lifetime Ago…

Have you ever had a reunion of old friends in which, aside from a few gray hairs, you all looked the same as you did 30+ years ago?

This was what happened to me recently.

After a memorial service of a friend who suddenly passed away, I saw two old classmates from high school and church. Sure, I may have lost my long thick hair but in my eyes, we all looked the same! Excited to see each other and our spouses, we decided to arrange a get-together a couple of weeks later.

Trading email messages and Facebook chats, we finally settled on a mutual date for this event – Saturday night. Continue reading

Haunted By A Sciuridae…

During our recent trip to the San Francisco Botanical Garden, we were amazed by the different blooms that welcomed us to its natural playground. Devoid of many tourists, the pathways were peaceful. Strolling along the paved routes, we stumbled upon a squirrel.

It was kind enough to pose for a “welcome” photo opportunity so I snapped it.

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Continuing our exploration of the massive garden, we noticed something… Continue reading