Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Politics Disgust Me

Associated Press states Obama is now outraged by his pastor. Typical politics! At one time Obama says Wright "has done enormous good," and now says Wrights remarks "should be denounced." I call that speaking out of both sides of your mouth. Obama speaks out now because of the damage done to his campaign. Sorry, but I can't believe anything Obama says. He should have been "outraged" with the remarks when they were first circulated and not waited until he felt his political success begin to diminish. He was willing to criticize his own grandmother and continue to defend Wright - now he's mad?!?!?!? Absolutely disgusting to me!Below is the link for the entire article or you can read the excerpts I have pasted.
Obama says he's outraged by former pastor's comments
Apr 29, 3:37 PM (ET)By MIKE GLOVER
WINSTON-SALEM, N.C. (AP) - Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama said Tuesday he was outraged by the latest divisive comments from his former pastor and rejected the notion that he secretly agrees with him. Obama is seeking to tamp down the growing fury over Rev. Jeremiah Wright and his incendiary remarks that threaten to undermine his campaign at a tough time. The Illinois senator is coming off a loss in Pennsylvania to rival Hillary Rodham Clinton and trying to win over white working-class voters in Indiana and North Carolina in next Tuesday's primaries.
"I am outraged by the comments that were made and saddened by the spectacle that we saw yesterday," Obama told reporters at a news conference.

On Monday, Wright criticized the U.S. government as imperialist and stood by his suggestion that the United States invented the HIV virus as a means of genocide against minorities.

Obama stated flatly that he doesn't share the views of the man who officiated at his wedding, baptized his two daughters and been his pastor for 20 years. The title of Obama's second book, "The Audacity of Hope," came from a Wright sermon. In a highly publicized speech last month, Obama sharply condemned Wright's remarks. But he did not leave the church or repudiate the minister himself, who he said was like a family member.

"His comments were not only divisive and destructive, I believe they end up giving comfort to those who prey on hate," Obama said. Wright had asserted that criticism of his fiery sermons was an attack on the black church. Obama rejected that notion. "He has done great damage, I do not see that relationship being the same," said Obama.

Wright recently retired from the church. He became an issue in Obama's presidential bid when videos circulated of Wright condemning the U.S. government for allegedly racist and genocidal acts. In the videos, some several years old, Wright called on God to "damn America." He also said the government created the AIDS virus to destroy "people of color."
Obama said he didn't vet his pastor before deciding to seek the presidency. He said he was particularly distressed that the furor has been a distraction to the purpose of a campaign.
"I gave him the benefit of the doubt in my speech in Philadelphia explaining that he's done enormous good. ... But when he states and then amplifies such ridiculous propositions as the U.S. government somehow being involved in AIDS. ... There are no excuses. They offended me. They rightly offend all Americans and they should be denounced."
(emphasis mine)

Tuesday, April 29, 2008


50,000 hits. Thank you, my blogging friends.

Monday, April 28, 2008

Charlie Bit Me

The below YouTube video, has been viewed over 21 million times. It is probably nearing 25 million after all the times our household has clicked on it. Biting is not a good thing, but the ornery chuckle of the little guy is so funny I had to share it with you. I apologize if you are part of the 21 million viewers.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

I Applaud Debbie

Debbie is the one who convinced me to join the world of blogging. I applaud Debbie for being a true friend. She works in the legal arena and faces many stressful days, but you would never know it. She is a positive, bright, person who radiates happiness. If you met her, you would quickly notice she is a proud mom to her brilliant son Sheldon and is head-over-heels in love with her husband Mark, pastor of The Pentecostals of Orange County. They make a dynamite team. You would probably notice her very healthy, gorgeous hair, too. There are many things I can applaud Debbie for, but I choose to applaud her most for her ability to pray. If I am in need, I want Debbie to pray for me. Yep, you are hearing whistles, clapping, and some hollerin' saying, "Go, Deb! I love you!"

Friday, April 25, 2008

I Applaud Shirley

Today, I applaud Shirley. (Pictured above in her son's plane.) A woman of great faith, she has remained strong in the darkest of hours and given her life to the work of God. Like Helen, Shirley isn't afraid to tackle controversial issues which often result in heated debates. (I might add, I agree at times and disagree at times with both of these ladies. LOL) Whether traveling cross country for a speaking engagement, writing another book, or playing with grandkids in the kitchen, Shirley always seems to find pleasure in the simple and small things of life. Nothing goes unnoticed. Shirley, I love you and your family. Can you hear my loud applause?

Thursday, April 24, 2008

I Applaud Helen

After writing the post about applauding someone, I decided to take a few days and applaud some of my friends. The first friend I have chosen is Helen. I want to applaud Helen for her consistent stand against war, prejudice, and racism in spite of the controversy she often faces. Although Helen and I don't always see eye to eye, she understands agreeing to disagree and never degrades someone for his/her opinion. I applaud Helen for her gift of poetry which she shares with us and her perserverance. She is true to herself, and has become a true cyber friend to me. I love you, Helen. Clap, clap, clap - loudly.

Please visit the below link and vote for my friend, Helen Losse. She is an incredible poet and worthy of all votes.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Go Ahead, Applaud Someone

When someone does something good, applaud! You will make two people happy.
- Samuel Goldwyn

Let me first say to my blogging friends, you are the exceptional person to be kind and complimentary but, there are some people who are quick to be critical and never give a compliment even if they did enjoy or like something. Typically, those people are not happy people. Speaking a kind word to someone, applauding something good or great efforts, will not only make that person feel better but you, in turn, will feel happy.

Monday, April 21, 2008

freeWAY Update

WOW! It has been a busy week-end! freeWAY sang for the Unite to Ignite Prayer and Bible Conference on Friday and Saturday nights and capped the weekend with a concert at Pastor McPhail's church, Pentecostal Lighthouse in Visalia, California. Although they have sang at many venues, they are considering their performance at Pentecostal Lighthouse as their first official concert where they sang an entire set instead of just two or three songs. The congregation was "with 'em" from the first notes. The energy was high, the boys stage presence was excellent, and after enjoying themselves and having fun, they began to minister. By the time they got to the 9th song, people began to flood into the altar area crying and seeking God. There were some who met God for the first time. Afterwards, young and old bought CD's and asked for autographs. It was an exciting day and I was so proud. Please pray for freeWAY that their focus to minister will remain steadfast and God will continue to bless. They will be singing in Sacramento at Calvary Evangelism Center (above poster) on Saturday and Sunday morning will be at East Valley Pentecostal Church in San Jose.

Thursday, April 17, 2008

freeWAY May Be In Your Area

If you are interested and in the area of any of the upcoming concerts, here is the next few freeWAY event dates.
Friday, April 18
Apostolic Gospel Church, 1465-20th Ave., Delano @ 7:00 PM Unite To Ignite Prayer and Bible Conference with guest speaker, Jerry Jones
Saturday, April 19
United Pentecostal Church, 209 N. Orange Ave., Exeter @ 6:00 PM Unite To Ignite Prayer and Bible Conference with guest speaker, Jerry Jones
Sunday, April 20
Pentecostal Lighthouse, 1219 W. Noble Ave, Visalia @ 11:00 AM
Saturday, April 26
Calvary Evangelism Center, 4911 47th Ave., Sacramento @ 3:00 PM Infusion Youth Conference with guest speaker Ken Gurley
Sunday, April 27
East Valley Pentecostal Church, 2715 South White Rd., San Jose, @ 10:00 AM

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

freeWAY Again!

Maybe I should call this "The Week of Bragging!" LOL Thought you might enjoy another video of freeWAY singing. Here they are singing "Bad News for the Blues." You might want to get your dancing shoes on for this one.

freeWAY Video

Although it is already posted on their producer's blog, Marty Funderburk at, and on Tyler's blog, I wanted to bring it to my friends who may not visit the other blogs. Here is a video of freeWAY singing "I Still Believe In America" at To The Chief Musician Music Conference in Stockton, California. I was so proud of them. Tyler, who sings lead, compiled the video. Bryce sings bass in the quartet, but he sings tenor for solo parts and sings the first verse on this song.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Student of the Month

Is it okay to brag two days in a row? (Smile) Bryn was the chosen student of the month and was honored at a school assembly receiving a certificate, medal, ribbon magnets, a $5 gift certificate, and a free kids meal at Elephant Bar. She's sweet, smart, and learning how to outwit her big brothers. Today, Blake jumped out of the truck and said to Bryn, "Let's race." They took off in a dash and, as usual, her bigger brother beat her. She quickly responded, "No, we are playing like the Bible. The first shall be last and the last shall be first." She has brought so much fun and happiness to our family.

Monday, April 14, 2008

Update on Blake's Chess Club Team

Blake is a member of the National Chess Federation and the Chess Club at his elementary school. His team recently went to the regional finals tournament that would determine what teams move on to state finals. His team was doing well and vying for first place when one of the team members attempted to bribe his opponent. Points were deducted as penalty and it knocked Blake's team to a disappointing fourth place. The boy who robbed his own team seemed as if he really did not care and had a cocky attitude. He seemed to gloat while his dad argued with the teacher who leads the team. No one yet knows if the boy has been removed from the team or what punishment the school will administer. There are 10 remaining team members who are sorely upset and Blake is trying to figure out if he can qualify for the state finals as an independent. Who knows?!?! I do know this - Blake got a medal, can beat anyone on his team, and I am proud him.

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Hey, I'm A Survivor!

outdoor concert in downtown Stockton
freeWAY singing at To The Chief Musician

sales and autographs

Bryce with renowned recording artist Tammy Trout

Sunday was a wonderful day of church followed by dinner with our ministry team, great fellowship, and then the short drive home. Before we reached the house, I told my husband, "My throat hurts." It was a sudden pain and within an hour, I had white infection in my throat. From previous experience, I knew instantly it was strep throat. The pain kept me from sleeping and as soon as the sun rose, I went to my doctor's office and was sent to urgent care. When I saw the urgent care doctor, I told her I needed a Penicillin shot and a round of oral Penicillin. She refused to give it to me saying she had to wait for the culture and sent me back home with a different antibiotic. The next morning, after another sleepless night, fever, pain, and six doses of the "other" antibiotic, my husband called my doctor and said, "She's coming in, be ready." When I arrived at my doctor's office, they took me in, gave me a Penicillin shot, and a prescription of 500 mg Penicillin four times a day. After four nights of fever and discomfort, I finally got relief and the infection disappeared. I'm sure if I would have been given Penicillin on the first trip to the doctor, I would not have developed such a severe case of strep. It was the most severe case I have ever had and and I would never wish it on anyone.
Thank you so much for your prayers, thoughts, and concern.
freeWAY was scheduled to sing in Stockton this past weekend at To The Chief Musician Music Conference. I wanted to go and knew I probably shouldn't, but my sister drove me up the day of the performance. The boys were fantastic! They have already been invited back for next year's conference. I slept late in the hotel bed the next morning and, although feeling weak, I feel much better. I'm a survivor! :)
P.S. As soon as someone downloads it, I will share the video of freeWAY singing a patriotic song.

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

Jana's Ill

To all of Jana's blogger friends-

She has been in bed for the past three days with a severe case of strep throat. She has gone to the doctor the past two days and has received a shot and antibiotics. She is doing slightly better today but remains in bed not feeling well. She asked me to write to you and explain why she has not replied to nor blogged within the past few days. Thank you for your prayers for her.


Sunday, April 6, 2008

Gangs, Prisons, and God

Last week, the local newspaper released the below warning concerning gang initiations and the potential danger to innocent victims. Some condemned the local police for "scaring" everyone and say the threat is a joke. I can't say if the threat is serious or not, but I do know our town is riddled with violent gangs. The town sits on the county line that divides the Nortenos (northerners) from the Surenos (southerners) gangs and this is the meeting place to stage wars. (Here's a link that talks of Delano being the dividing line: My husband and I taught a class at a local continuation high school and dealt with the issue of gangs frequently. Just as one must commit some monstrous crime to be accepted into a gang, if one chooses to leave the gang he must subject himself to a beating. The gang will beat the person nearly to death and leave them to die. (To learn more about gangs visit One of the boys in our class was convinced to leave his gang after his brother went to jail for a murder they both committed but the one brother did not get caught. His beating nearly killed him, but he was willing to take the beating to leave gang life. Shortly after he was "out," we were talking to him at school when suddenly a car stopped in the middle of the road, three gangsters jumped out and attacked this boy's best friend. This boy stood there with clenched jaw, tight fists, and watched as his friend's head was pounded into the concrete curb. The gangsters did their damage, jumped back in their car and took off. I looked at this young man who had recently gave up gang life, held his arm and said, "I'm proud of you." He looked me in the eye and responded, "That was the hardest thing I ever had to do, but I knew if I helped my friend I would be back in." This was nearly 12 years ago and this young man is now the on-campus security guard for the school. Gang life is real, it's hard, and often deadly. Since the addition of several prisons to our little town, gang activity has increased. We have six prisons within a seven mile radius with one of those being a federal prison. One of the state prisons here in Delano, is a level four with San Quentin and Pelican Bay being the only two with higher security in the state. It houses approximately 5,000 prisoners. Overbooked, and understaffed. Even so, God dwells with us in this town and His angels keep guard around us.

Delano Warns of Potential Gang Attacks
On 03-27-08, the Delano Police Department Gang Unit received information that a California Criminal Street Gang is going to be holding gang initiations in the cities of Delano and McFarland. Prospective members are to collide their vehicles into random vehicles from behind. As the driver of the victim vehicle exits, the prospective members will open fire.

As always, the Delano Police Department is concerned with the safety of all Delano residents and therefore, we are strongly suggesting that everyone use extreme caution if they are involved in a rear end collision. If citizens are involved in a similar type vehicle collision they should drive directly to the Delano Police Department to report motor vehicle collisions until further notice. The Delano Police Department is located at 1022 12th Avenue.

Friday, April 4, 2008

Communication: Head Up, Waist Up, Floor Up

Wednesday night, I was honored, even flattered, to speak to Apostolic Tabernacle Choir of Merced, California. This choir, under the direction of Mark Yandris (pictured above), is one of the best choirs in the nation. Their tight harmonies are a most advanced level and their articulation is clear, expression is strong, and enthusiasm contagious. Mark is a highly sought after musician among black gospel artists. His talent is more than learned, it is a gift. He asked if I would speak about stage presentation and then added a few other topics to the list. My first reaction was, "What could I do to help them??? They are the best!" I'm sure I didn't give them anything they hadn't heard before, but sometimes a different voice is needed.

I got busy working on my notes, hand-outs, and asking God to give me something beneficial. Then I tackled the requested topics. I spoke about choir decorum, importance of uniformity, choir stage presentation, solo stage presentation, working with your leader, and how to avoid burn-out and stay committed. The part I want to share with you is the key to any stage performance - communication. The break down: 15% of communication is content, 30% is tone/emotion, and 55% is body language or body movement. Communication is our way of connecting with people whether on stage, in a class, or home with family. Blogs can be difficult at times to understand because one reads the words in a manner they would express and may not be the perspective of the author. If a person knows of me but does not know me, they can easily misunderstand. Surely, if a conversation is face to face, it will easily be understood because my body language will communicate my sentiment and opinion. Ah, the woes of blogging! LOL If you are one who frequents a stage, remember your body language is of vital importance to connecting to your audience. Not from the head up, not from the waist up, but from the floor up.
P.S. Apostolic Tabernacle Choir is always from the floor up!

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Yesterday's Pranks

Did anyone pull a prank on you yesterday in the name of April Fool's Day? Tyler called wanting to know if freeWAY's large shipment of CD's had arrived. He is worried about having them in time for the To The Chief Musician Music Conference where freeWAY will sing next week. I couldn't resist! I told him Rick had called to inform us the CD's were shipped but the UPS truck that carried them had crashed and burned. I added Daywind's insurance would replace the burned CD's but it would take two weeks to get them. The silence on the other end of the phone was huge! I stifled my giggles when he said, "Serious?" I replied, "I am as serious as April Fool's Day." Then, a fit of giggles erupted to the dismay of Tyler who was silently seething. Gotcha, Tyler! LOL

My favorite April Fool's story was from my Aunt Veneta. She was a fabulous baker and would take a home-baked good to work everyday. One April Fool's Day, she took a platter of chocolate covered Styrofoam peanuts. I can only imagine the expressions when teeth sunk into Styrofoam. Gotta love it!

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

I Hope You Dance

My post about dancing seemed to be enjoyed by many so I thought I would share the lyrics to the song, "I Hope You Dance," and I have also included a link that tells the story about how the song was written.

I hope you never lose your sense of wonder,
You get your fill to eat but always keep that hunger,
May you never take one single breath for granted,
God forbid love ever leave you empty handed,
I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean,

Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,
Promise me that you'll give faith a fighting chance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.
I hope you dance....I hope you dance.
I hope you never fear those mountains in the distance,

Never settle for the path of least resistance,
Livin' might mean takin' chances but they're worth takin',
Lovin' might be a mistake but it's worth makin',
Don't let some hell bent heart leave you bitter,

When you come close to sellin' out reconsider,
Give the heavens above more than just a passing glance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.
I hope you dance....I hope you dance

I hope you dance....I hope you dance.
Time is a wheel in constant motion always rolling us along,

Tell me who wants to look back on their years and wonder,
Where those years have gone.
I hope you still feel small when you stand beside the ocean,

Whenever one door closes I hope one more opens,
Promise me that you'll give faith a fighting chance,
And when you get the choice to sit it out or dance.
Dance....I hope you dance.
I hope you dance....I hope you dance.

I hope you dance....I hope you dance..
Time is a wheel in constant motion always rolling us along,

Tell me who wants to look back on their years and wonder where those years have gone,
I hope you dance...