Anything is Possible!

With Love, Hope, and Perseverance


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Good News Tuesday: Animal Cruelty Legislation, A Message from a Father, and Prison Reform’s Early Release

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Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

 

US House Votes to Make Animal Cruelty a Federal Offense

The US house of representatives voted unanimously to approve a bill to make animal cruelty a federal offense with a penalty of up to seven years in prison.

Republican co-sponsor, Vern Buchanan said in a statement that the bill’s prospects of becoming law were favorable.

“This is a landmark bill that establishes for the first time a federal offense against the malicious torturing of animals,” Mr. Buchanan said. He added, “We are optimistic it will pass the Senate, which has already supported the bill in two previous sessions of Congress.”

Representatives recognize that animal cruelty is closely related to abuse of children and domestic violence. We are making progress.

Here’s the story from The New York Times

 

Fathers and Daughters: A Comforting Answer Four Years Later

Chastity Patterson lost her father in 2015. She continued to send text messages to his phone number for four years about what was going on in her life: overcoming challenges, graduating from college, and her continuing love. On the eve of the fourth anniversary of her father’s death, 23 year old Chastity was ready to let go with a final message when she received a response. It was from a father who had lost his daughter.

Please read this story from the Good News Network.

Prison Reform Early Release

527 prisoners were released in Oklahoma yesterday. The release was part of the state’s criminal justice reform which made drug possession a misdemeanor instead of a felony. All the sentences commuted were for low level crimes like drug possession and property theft. Here’s more:

Got good news?

Please share in the comments!


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Prayer for a Lost Dog

Today is the feast day of Saint Francis of Assisi, patron saint of animals and the environment. You can read my favorite Saint Francis story in this post about Saint Francis and the wolf.

The following events happened just a few days ago.

dogs running Pixabay (2)

 

On the way to the laundromat to wash my 17-year-old dog’s favorite bed, I saw a dog running down the busy street in the opposite direction. It was a dark grey dog, maybe a hound/pit bull mix, running with that panicked, I’m lost gait. Without thinking, I pulled onto a side street to turn around and fished out the leash I kept in the console. I couldn’t see the dog, but traffic had slowed considerably, and people were honking ahead of me.

I prayed out loud: “God please help that dog! Please get him off the road! Help him Now! (I had no idea if the dog was a male, but that’s what came out.) Within a few seconds I saw the dog, several cars ahead, make a right turn into an apartment complex. Okay, he’s safe. You have things to do, I told myself.  But somehow, my car turned into the apartment complex. He’s not safe; he’s scared.  Maybe he’ll come to me, said my other voice, brushing aside thoughts of then what are you going to do if you catch him?  I parked my car and started walking through the apartment complex carrying the leash. A guy near the pool house asked if I was looking for a dog.

“Yeah but it’s not mine. He was running down the street. I thought I might be able to catch him.”

“He went that way,” the pool guy said pointing further into the complex.

I kept walking, past the dumpsters and around a corner, seeing no sign of the dog.  He’s gone. Let it go. At least he’s not on the street. Maybe he’ll find his way home, I told myself. But for some reason, I kept walking through the unfamiliar apartment complex.

Then, I saw a young woman walking toward me. She must have seen the leash. “Are you looking for a dog?”

“Yes, but he’s not mine. He was running down the street,” I said pointing in the direction of the busy road.

“He’s in my apartment. He came right to my boyfriend.”

“Oh, good. Thank you. I’m glad he’s safe.”

“I work for a vet,” she said. “I’ll take him into work so see if he has a microchip.”

“Thank you so much for taking him in,” I said bowing slightly with praying hands.

“Thank you for looking for him,” she said.

“Of course.”

I walked back to my car feeling grateful that the dog found a safe place and someone in a position to help him, and that I’d kept walking long enough to find that out.

Back in my car, I said to God, “I didn’t mean to be rude with that, now! part.

God just smiled.

(The photo from pixabay reminded me of the dog.)

 

Happy Saint Francis Day!

st-francis-of-assisi-and-birds from Robert Kennedy's book

This picture is from the book Saint Francis of Assisi, A Life of Joy,

by Robert F. Kennedy, Jr.


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Good News Tuesday: Animal Research, A Dedicated Employee, and Global Strike for Climate Action

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Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

EPA to Phase Out Animal Research and Fund More Humane Alternatives

Here’s the story from the Good News Network.   With so many alternatives available, it makes sense to use them.

21 Year Old Takes Care of 90 Guests for 32 Hour Shift as the Only Employee at Hotel During Flooding

Satchel Smith was supposed to work the 3 to 11 shift at the hotel in Texas, but tropical storm Imelda flooded the roads and no one could get in or out. Satchel was the only employee at Homewood Suites during the 32 hours with 90 guests. Normally a front desk clerk, he cooked and provided other services answering questions with a positive attitude though he said later, it was “intense.” Read more about Satchel and the experience in this CNN article.

Global Climate Strike

While I haven’t seem much good news coming from the UN summit so far, the climate activism movement is gaining momentum. It’s been reported that millions of citizens of Earth, most of them children and teenagers, engaged in climate action starting with strikes, marches and protests on Friday. Here is one of many videos summarizing Friday’s activism. Thank you to the “children” leading the way.

 

And here’s one more video with a message that made me want to yell, YES!

  “We will never back down.”   Jean Hinchliffe, Student Activist, Sydney Australia

Got Good News? Please share in the comments!


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Good News Tuesday: Solo Sailing Record, The Ethical Pub, Elephant Retirement, and Compassionate Students

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Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

 

Woman Sets Record as Oldest Person to Sail Around the World Solo

Jeanne Socrates, 77, of Great Britain, attempted the trip in 2017 but had to stop because she broke her neck and ribs as reported in this article from Good Morning America

Most Ethical Pub

The Green Vic of London is setting out to become the world’s most ethical pub. They hire people who are vulnerable: the homeless, people coming out of prison, and veterans. Their menu is 100% plant based, and they donate abundantly.  The video here is a little noisy, so you might want to check out the one on the Green Vic Website:

https://www.betterworld.love/

 

 

Elephant Retirement

Denmark bought its country’s last four circus elephants to give them a proper retirement. The country is preparing to ban the use of normally wild animals in circuses.  Here’s the story.

 

High School Students Rise to Compassion and Generosity

A high school freshman in Memphis, TN was bullied for wearing the same clothes every day. Then these two classmates gave him some clothes including new shoes. The students’ share their thoughts and feelings in this video.

Got good news?

Please share in the comments!

It can be global, local, or personal!


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Good News Tuesday: Helpers, Fur, and Friendship

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Seeking Balance One Tuesday at a Time

Helpers after the Storm

This BBC article highlights some of stories of those who helped after Hurricane Dorian including six year old Jermaine Bell  who used  money he’d been saving for Disney to help feed evacuees.

Many cruise ships diverted to the Bahamas to become relief vessels after Hurricane Dorian. Celebrity Cruises and Royal Caribbean provided supplies and free transportation to evacuees and those returning home. The Equinox, of Celebrity cruise lines, interrupted their Caribbean itinerary so that their kitchen staff could serve 10,000 meals Cruise guests volunteered to plate and pack them. Here’s their story.

And don’t forget Chef Jose Andres is one who jumped right in and went the extra mile.

California Bans Fur Trapping

California has become the first US state to ban trapping mammals and other non-game animals for fur. Not only is trapping animals for fur cruel to the “target” animals, but also to dogs, cats, and birds who accidentally get trapped. This article from The Good News Network shares how the ban will save taxpayers money.

High School Seniors Step Up in Friendship

High school freshman Cale Wrenn, 14, had a rough time on his first days. Classmates made fun of him for being short, and he ate lunch alone. After his sister, Leah, asked for help on twitter, high school seniors, including Demontez Canada, who is a member of the football and basketball teams, became his friends. Watch the video below and imagine a world where compassion and friendship flow easily.

 

Good news is out there!

Feel free to share yours in the comments

or write your own Good News post and link it back here.


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SoCS: Getting Out of the Way

stream-of-consciousness-saturday-2018-19

Today’s prompt:

Your Friday prompt for Stream of Consciousness Saturday is “weigh/way/whey.” Use one, use ’em all, bonus points if you do that last thing. Enjoy!

When we heard Dorian was coming to the Carolina Coast, we got out of the way. It was the first time since the early 80s, or even earlier, that we bugged out instead of riding out a hurricane. I think I always took a little pride in staying through the storms. Not saying that’s healthy, but we didn’t really have a place to go besides a hotel. So when we left the coast to head for the hills, it weighed on me just a little – the feeling that I was deserting my tribe. But it weighed just a little.

Hurricane Dorian was a disaster in the Bahamas. I’m saying a prayer right now for the folks down there, asking for comfort and strength in facing the devastation with serious weight. The predictions for Dorian coming right for my city and the thought of going a week without electricity which has often been the case in storms like this, were enough for my husband to convince me to go to the mountains. We got to visit with my son and his family – his new wife and my granddaughter – so that was a plus. Reports so far from our neighbors are that there was not as much damage as expected. No trees fell on our house and they still have electricity. The electricity is a big surprise. Even when we’ve lost electricity, we still have power! That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!

My hopes and prayers are with all those north along the coast in the path of Dorian’s remnants. Tomorrow (Saturday) we will be heading home to warmer temperatures and a little extra yard work. Hopefully no surprises.  We brought 17 year old Marigold with us for the first time to this mountain house. She was pretty disoriented at first, but was happy as long as she had her favorite bed. Here she is sleeping on the balcony. She didn’t like the 7 hour drive, but she’ll be happy to be home.

Mary moo loves her bed in the mtns

She fits if she turns the other way.

I could go for bonus points, but I’m a little tired after dancing with my granddaughter. She did have a little almond milk with grandma. No way it has any whey in it. And unlike little Miss Muffet, who ate curds and whey which doesn’t sound all that appetizing, my granddaughter would not be frightened by a spider. We would study a spider with great interest. Here’s a spider I found on my front porch before the storm. I hope it found some cover.  That other spider was just trying to be friends with Miss Muffet. Did it eat her curds and whey? Probably not. But anything is possible.

little green spider on web

SoCS is brought to you by Linda G. Hill. You can learn more and join in by visiting:

https://lindaghill.com/2019/09/06/the-friday-reminder-and-prompt-for-socs-sept-7-19/

Here are the rules:

1. Your post must be stream of consciousness writing, meaning no editing (typos can be fixed), and minimal planning on what you’re going to write.

2. Your post can be as long or as short as you want it to be. One sentence – one thousand words. Fact, fiction, poetry – it doesn’t matter. Just let the words carry you along until you’re ready to stop.

3. I will post the prompt here on my blog every Friday, along with a reminder for you to join in. The prompt will be one random thing, but it will not be a subject. For instance, I will not say “Write about dogs”; the prompt will be more like, “Make your first sentence a question,” “Begin with the word ‘The,’” or will simply be a single word to get you started.

4. Ping back! It’s important, so that I and other people can come and read your post! For example, in your post you can write “This post is part of SoCS:” and then copy and paste the URL found in your address bar at the top of this post into yours. Your link will show up in my comments for everyone to see. The most recent pingbacks will be found at the top. NOTE: Pingbacks only work from WordPress sites. If you’re self-hosted or are participating from another host, such as Blogger, please leave a link to your post in the comments below.

5. Read at least one other person’s blog who has linked back their post. Even better, read all of them! If you’re the first person to link back, you can check back later or go to the previous week by following my category, “Stream of Consciousness Saturday,” which you’ll find below the “Like” button on my post.

6. Copy and paste the rules (if you’d like to) in your post. The more people who join in, the more new bloggers you’ll meet and the bigger your community will get!

7. As a suggestion, tag your post “SoCS” and/or “#SoCS” for more exposure and more views.

8. Have fun!


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Mantis

I’m sitting out SoCS today while recovering from a summer cold. Here’s a post I’ve had waiting in the wings about my close encounter with a praying mantis whose deliberate movements and intent stare gave the impression of mindfulness. This is the first time I’ve ever shared a video here on WP. It should rotate when you click on it.

Have you ever had this kind of encounter with a praying mantis or other insect?

 

mantis on bag

Pausing just in time to see you

Clinging to the lawn bag

Displaced by my weeding frenzy.

We studied each other for a bit

And I hoped I hadn’t stuffed

Other bugs in with the vines.

I leaned the bag slowly

Toward the mailbox post.

Your front legs reached, pedaling

Until you were close enough to grab hold.

I thought you’d climb down,

But you climbed on top of the mailbox

To view the neighborhood.

mantis on mailbox long

You swiveled your head to look at me.

We studied each other, curious.

Then you turned and walked down the other side

And prepared to dive down into the foliage.

mantis poised to jump

I turned to admire the late golden sun.

You must have seen your chance

To disappear into the green.