MAXINE BILLINGS, Photographer & Author

Fine Art Photography Inspired By Natural Creation & Wholesome Reading For Your Family's Entertainment


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THE WINTERTIME OF LIFE

ELDERLY COUPLEGetting older is no joke!  Ecclesiastes 12:1-7 describe the wintertime of life in symbolic language–the trembling of arms and hands, the bending of legs, the dimming of eyesight, and so on.  Do these things sound depressing?  Well, depending on our attitude, they can be.

I decided to write this post because everyday since I retired last November some part of my body reminds me that I am not the spring chicken I used to be :).  Today, it’s a painful, sore, and swollen right ankle.  I soak it.  I rub it.  I put a warm compress on it.  I wear compression stockings.  Sometimes, these things help, but not today.  And who knows how it will be tomorrow or what else may be bothering me?

I recall when I was younger how Mama used to tell my siblings and me that just because certain things we did then did not bother us that we thought they would not cause us pain later in life.  Now, I finally understand what she meant.  When we’re young, we think that our youthful vitality will never diminish.  But before we realize what’s happening, the wintertime of life is upon us.  Personally, it has been extremely difficult for me to acknowledge that parts of me are falling apart.  But I’m learning to accept that I now need extra help in order for my body to heal from certain illnesses and discomforts of aging.  No, I am no longer in mint condition.  I am an older model vehicle (a classic–or perhaps antique is a better term 🙂 ) who needs more than the usual routine maintenance :).

One of my favorite Internet sites to go to when I’m doing research on health topics is the Mayo Clinic because it has information that is helpful and very easy to understand.  As their site points out, the aging process affects our bodies in various ways.  I have listed some below.

 

Something else that the site reminds us of that I appreciate is this:  While we can’t stop the aging process, we might be able to minimize its impact by making healthy choices.  That is an excellent idea because God blessed us with our wonderfully-made bodies, and it is up to each one of us as individuals to do what we can to cherish and take care of them.

I hope you had an awesome day!  As always, this is from my heart to yours.

Maxine

http://www.maxinebillings.com

(Photo of Elderly Couple–Courtesy of Office.com Clip Art)

 

 


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DO YOU REMEMBER THE TIME WHEN . . . ?

THOUGHT BUBBLEAre you kidding?  I can barely remember what happened a few minutes ago!  I decided to write this blog because it seems that more and more, I am forgetting things.  Here are a few that immediately come to mind.

One day recently, I kept my then five-year-old nephew for my sister and her husband and let him drink orange juice all day long and could not understand why he was so wired up and bouncing off the walls.  Hey, it was an honest mistake.  I mean, my kids are now 34 and 27 so I had forgotten that you can’t give young children a lot of products that contain sugar.  But you better believe that whenever I keep him now, I remember.

Then some years back, I was talking with a friend and her son.  During our conversation, I kept digging around in my pocketbook, and her son finally asked what I was looking for.  When I said, “My car keys,” he asked, “What’s that in your hands?”  I could not help but laugh at myself.

I’ll share one more with you and then get on with this blog.  I was really craving a vanilla soft-serve ice cream cone from McDonald’s one day, but first, I stopped to put $7.00 worth of gas in my car and also to take it through the drive-thru car wash.  On my way home as I savored my delicious ice cream cone, I kept glancing at my gas gauge and thinking to myself, “It doesn’t even look like the gas hand moved.  It’s like I didn’t even put any gas in the car.”

Finally, it dawned on me that the gauge hadn’t moved because I had actually forgotten to pump the gas.  Because the only thing that had been on my mind at the time was getting my ice cream, I had gone into the store, paid for my gas and car wash, jumped back into my car, drove through the car wash, got my ice cream at McDonald’s, and headed back home.  That was when I noticed the gas gauge.  Since I was on the Interstate and the next exit was the one for me to go home, I could not turn around.  When I got to my exit, instead of going home, I had to return to the gas station and explain to the cashier what I had done.  He said, “So that’s why that customer said the pump only gave him $7.00 worth of gas and then stopped.”  As usual, I laughed at myself and just had to share my funny experience with some of my family and friends.  My husband simply grinned and shook his head.  Hey, there’s no shame in my game!

I’ve been thinking about how our ability to remember things is a divine gift from God.  Of course, it’s not perfect because we’re not perfect; Adam and Eve messed that up for us, along with everything else.  Anyway, when my brain is working properly, it’s nice to be able to retrieve bits of information that has been stored there.  And I can only imagine how awesome it will be when we are able to use our brains to the extent that God originally intended.  The human brain is like a reservoir that can never be filled.  No wonder Psalm 139:14 says that we are wonderfully made!

AMOFThere are times when I love reminiscing about the good ole days.  I also love looking through photo albums at some of myTFH and my family’s pictures from that era.  I think that sometimes it’s good to reflect on the past, especially when we focus on the good memories that we cherish.  Oftentimes, I have some of my characters do the same.  Rose does it in A MEASURE OF FAITH, and so do Myah and one of her sons in TIME FOR HOPE.

One of the things I enjoy most about writing is that I get to put my characters onto the center stage of my reader’s mind’s eye, and in the process, the characters perform for their audience (the readers.)  Yes, I know, some of them get on your nerves, making you angry at them; some of you may even shout at them. Other characters may make you laugh, and some may cause you to cry.  That’s because even though they and their stories are fictional, the issues they face are true-to-life.

Well, that’s all for this post.  I just had to share some more laughter with you–more of my crazy, hilarious experiences.  And remember–whether you’re reading my books or someone else’s, READING IS FUNDAMENTAL.  So HAPPY READING!

And as always, this is from my heart to yours,

Maxine

http://www.maxinebillings.com

(Emoticon With Thought Bubble Courtesy Of Office.com Clip Art)