Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Happy Birthday Janice

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Happy Birthday Janice! What a UnBelizeable  Day today! Jan was real hot!  (96 and partly cloudy.)  We took a tour of  Belize  by van after lots of  intense shopping by Jan today. Tuesday at Costa Maya, Jan swam with the dolphins and even kissed one?  Thursday is Roatan and Friday Cozumel.  Norwegian has really treated us well- a card from all 1025 employees on the Star; a cupcake waiting in our cabin for Janice, and tonight cake after dinner!  We wish all our friends  could have joined us for dinner tonight at 5pm.  I know you will see a lot more of us next week, the way they are feeding us.  Looking to buy some cheap Mayan calendars tomorrow….It’s the 50’s/60’s show at 10:30 tonight with rumors that Elvis may be onboard?


Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Cheapo Airline Safety

Greetings from Costa Maya!We are on vacation- first time in over a year I have missed an entry in my blog- but I bet no one noticed? The internet on ship is 75 cents a minute and we are in Mexico now with 92 temperatures and lots of sun. We actually arrived in New Orleans on Sunday morning, a bit overcast in afternoon and yesterday at sea. This is our first stop. hard to see computer in sun, so will write more later.
A plane was taking off from Kennedy Airport.  After it reached a comfortable cruising altitude, the Captain made an announcement over the intercom: "Ladies and gentlemen, this is your Captain speaking.  Welcome to Flight Number 293, nonstop from New York to Los Angeles.  The weather ahead is good and, therefore, we should have a smooth and uneventful flight.  Now sit back and relax.   OH, MY GOD!" Silence followed, and after a few minutes, the Captain came back on the intercom and said, "Ladies and Gentlemen, I am so sorry if I scared you earlier.  While I was talking to you, the Flight Attendant accidentally spilled a cup of hot coffee in my lap.  You should see the front of my pants!" .   A passenger in Coach yelled: "That's nothing.  You should see the back of mine!"
 
 

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Marvelous Little Toy

The Marvelous Toy" is an enduring children's classic. It was written by folk singer/songwriter Tom Paxton, who had auditioned unsuccessfully to become a member of the Chad Mitchell Trio and, by 1963, had begun to establish himself as a solo performer. The charming song tells the story of a mysterious toy presented to a child, complete with sound effects. "I never knew just what it was," goes the chorus, "and I guess I never will." Despite not joining the group, Paxton remained close to the Chad Mitchell Trio, who recorded "The Marvelous Toy" for their Singin' Our Minds album, released in October 1963. The group had made few inroads into the singles charts, but Mercury Records perhaps felt that "The Marvelous Toy" had the potential to become a Christmas standard, since the song was released on 45 the following month. November 1963 didn't turn out to be a good time to release such a novelty, as the assassination of President John Kennedy darkened the country's holiday mood; nevertheless, "The Marvelous Toy" got halfway up the lists of 100 most popular songs and also made the easy listening charts. It began to spread as a children's song and helped out the career of its author, who was signed to Elektra Records in 1964. There were more recordings over the years, the most prominent being Peter, Paul and Mary's version on their 1969 Peter, Paul and Mommy album.
travelling across Hwy 2 Stevens Pass this morning

Enjoying Kirkland this afternoon


Friday, February 22, 2013

Mark Lowry on his mouth

Mark Lowry is one of my favorite comedians. This is a short clip where he talks about his childhood that I know you will enjoy. I like where he says God can use anyone, and that is the truth.
Several City council members from around the state traveled to the State Capital and decided to go out for a night on the town before returning to their homes the following day.
Walking down the street they entered a fancy nightclub not far from their hotel that had a sign announcing ‘Live Entertainment’. Within minutes the ventriloquist was informed that a group of City Council members had just entered the club so he quickly began spouting out a routine that involved every j...oke or humorous story he knew about local government and local public officials. After five minutes of nonstop local government jokes one of the City Council members could not take it anymore. He stood up from the table and shouted as loud as he could “I’ve heard just about enough out of you and your dumb government jokes. What makes you think you can stereotype all public officials that way? We work hard for our constituents and we try our best to make the right decisions for the communities we serve. People like you who make jokes about government perpetuate the myth that local public officials are out of touch with reality and don’t know what they are doing in their elected offices. In fact, comments like yours make it impossible for us to gain any respect and they discourage good people from stepping up the plate and running for local public office. ”
The entire room went silent – you could have heard a pin drop. The ventriloquist was obviously embarrassed by the City Council members comments, stood up and faced the City Council member. He began to offer a sincere, heartfelt apology but the City Council stood back up and cut him off. “Sir, sit back down I wasn’t talking to you I was talking to that little wise cracker sitting on your lap”.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Touching Speech by Brides Dad

Perhaps this is one of the most touching speeches given by a brides father to the groom I have heard. I did not get a lot of counseling or advice before I got married,  I do remember my dad gave me a short letter he got called "Marriage is Death"- I lost it, but it was good advice and wish I could find a copy of that again. Hopefully I can show my grandkids by example on marriage, as Grandpas never give speeches at weddings. If anyone should have a copy of that article, please send it to me.
Bill’s second Anniversary was coming up and if there was one thing that got his wife Suzy upset, it was not getting a thoughtful gift on a special occasion.
Bill quizzed all his friends, co workers, clients and anyone he happened to bump into, as to what would be a good anniversary present. He finally settled on a huge bouquet of flowers.
Not willing to trust himself to pick out the right flowers, Bill called up a local flower shop with strict instructions to deliver the biggest most beautiful bouquet of flowers first thing in the morning with the following note “Happy Anniversary Year Number Two!”
The morning of the Anniversary Bill made sure Suzy would be the one to answer the door as he waited anxiously in the other room.
“WHAT IS THIS ALL ABOUT?!” Hollered Suzie angrily holding up his well thought out note, “Happy Anniversary You’re Number Two!”
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Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Less Rules, More Character

Nathan Mellor has some great advice -"Less Rules, More Character". It seems the theme today we hear on the news is more rules to solve our issues?  Sadly we hear that too much in church's as well. Building Character is nothing new- rather something we have forgotten. I hope we can instill Character in those around us. The only thing lacking in todays video is Verses from the Bible- is where it all starts.



I have obtained a copy of a recently discovered document from the 1st century. It’s from the first publisher of the Bible – this was before there was Zondervan and Tyndale and all those publishers. It’s a letter from them to the Bible’s original author…
Dear Sir,

While we appreciate that the writing of Your manuscript has involved the work of some 40 authors and taken over 1500 years to complete, as with all writers, we feel it is important to present to You some editorial suggestions for the sake of Your book’s marketability. Please understand that these are presented with Your interests in mind, as well as the necessity of this book paying for itself as we fulfill our contract with You.

At first, our review board thought it would be best to leave out some of the less-believable material – talking donkeys, floating ax heads, parting of the sea, bread from heaven, and things like that. However we are willing to leave those in. We’re just concerned that You not undermine Your work’s credibility.

However, there are still some certain elements that we deem best left out, even though they are factual. Clearly You haven’t included every thing that ever happened, so why not omit a few features that might otherwise harm Your book’s sales? – for instance, the inclusion in Joshua of the story of a prostitute named Rahab. It seems the account of the spies in her home is just as easily left out without altering the story of the conquest of Jericho. Why make such a character a key figure in your main story line? To bring her name up again in the New Testament as an illustration of good living seems to be using poor judgment too. (If you look in Hebrews 11:31, she’s one of only 2 women mentioned there – people who had faith – along with Noah, Abraham, Jacob, and others. Then James mentions her in 2:25 as a person who was “considered righteous” for what she did.)

Worst of all is her name appearing in the genealogy of Jesus along with 2 other women of questionable background. (Sure enough, right there in Matthew 1:5 is Rahab – she married a guy named Salmon and had a son named Boaz. Boaz became the father of Obed, and Obed the father of Jesse, the father of David – and Jesus descended from that earthly line.) As Your publisher, we should point out that it isn’t even considered customary to include the names of women in such lists. Our suggestion is that they simply be omitted, as in most genealogies.

If we have somehow failed to catch the spirit of Your work, our apologies. We are, of course, simply interested in Your work being polished in a way that it will be most widely read and accepted. Thank You for working with us to make Your book the best we can make it.

Monday, February 18, 2013

Funny Lotto Commercial

I enjoy lotto commercials for the humor and not the promotion of the games. Although I do buy a ticket occasionally- I have not bought one this year yet nor do I feel I am hooked on it. I came across this article below that really made me sad. God has given us so much and I often wonder if we will have to give an account on how we spent out money in our lifetime someday? I would not call buying lotto tickets as an investment-but then there are other things people spend too much on that are not investments either. They say you will never be happy with what you want if you are not happy with what you have. Please look at your spending habits occasionally- and seek help if you need it- it is no laughing matter.
Ex-San Diego mayor who gambled away $1 billion remorseful
February 14, 2013  8:10 pm
Maureen O'Connor was the first female mayor of San Diego. But when she left public life, she spent countless hours seated in front of video-poker machines, authorities said.
Over a nine-year period, she wagered an estimated $1 billion, including millions from a charity set up by her late husband, who founded Jack in the Box.

That was the portrait that emerged in court Thursday as the frail former mayor tearfully acknowledged she skimmed more than $2 million from a charity founded by her late husband, Robert O. Peterson.

O'Connor, 66, admitted in a plea deal that she had a gambling addiction and is nearly destitute. Her lawyer, prominent defense attorney Eugene Iredale, suggested that a brain tumor may have impaired her reasoning; he gave reporters copies of her brain scan from a 2011 surgery.

O'Connor's rapidly declining medical condition "renders it highly improbable — if not impossible — that she could be brought to trial," according to court documents filed by federal prosecutors.

"This is a sad day for the city of San Diego," said Assistant U.S. Atty. Phillip Halpern. "Maureen O'Connor was born and raised in this town. She rose from humble origins.... She dedicated much of her life, personal and professional, to improving this city."

The $1-billion gambling binge stretched from 2000 to 2009, according to court documents. In 2008 and 2009, when the fortune she had inherited was not enough, she began taking from the R.P. Foundation to cover her losses.

Despite being ahead more than $1 billion at one point, O'Connor "suffered even larger gambling losses," according to prosecutors. Her net loss, Iredale said, was about $13 million.

She was considered such a high roller that Las Vegas casinos would send a private jet to pick her up in San Diego. Records show that O'Connor won $100,000 at the Barona casino in San Diego County, while at roughly the same time she needed to cash a $100,000 check at the Bellagio in Las Vegas.

Those who knew the former political doyenne said she had become a recluse, inscrutable even to those she counted as friends.

"I considered myself one of her closest friends, but I would call her and she wouldn't return my call," said lawyer Louis Wolfsheimer. "I didn't want anything from her, just to know how she was. But it looked like she was becoming reclusive."

In a bargain with prosecutors, O'Connor agreed to repay $2,088,000 to the R.P. Foundation started by Peterson, which supported charities such as City of Hope, San Diego Hospice, and the Alzheimer's Assn., and was driven into insolvency in 2009 by O'Connor's misappropriation of funds, prosecutors said.

"I never meant to hurt the city," an emotional O'Connor told reporters gathered at a restaurant close to the federal courthouse. She promised to repay the foundation but declined to answer questions.

Prosecutors agreed to defer prosecution for two years. If O'Connor violates no further laws and makes restitution, the charge of making illegal financial transactions may be dismissed. Under the agreement, O'Connor acknowledged her guilt but was allowed to plead not guilty.

If convicted, O'Connor could have faced a maximum 10-year prison sentence and a fine of up to $250,000.

As part of her plea agreement, O'Connor agreed to settle "all tax liability resulting from her receipt" of money from the foundation. She also agreed to seek treatment for her gambling addiction.

Although she is currently without income or a bank account, O'Connor's economic status could reverse if she wins a civil lawsuit filed against a German bank involved in the 2005 purchase of a resort in Mendocino County that O'Connor had purchased in 1998.

O'Connor sold the Heritage House for $19.5 million but has alleged that she was the victim of fraud in the sale. A settlement or victory at trial could provide the millions needed to pay restitution to the foundation and also the tax liabilities involved with the misallocation of its funds.

"No figure, regardless of how much good they've done or how much they've given to charity, can escape criminal liability with impunity," said U.S. Atty. Laura Duffy.

One of O'Connor's major worries, defense attorney Iredale said, "is fear of losing her reputation."
--Tony Perry in San Diego

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Cats In The Cradle

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 Harry Chapins wife wrote this song back in 1974-I hope you will take time to listen to the words. I was first introduced to the words by Dr. Dobson in one of his videos for Dads. I made this video several years ago, and Cody loves to watch this video.  I just dropped Cody off at home after church- he spent the night and he is growing up so fast. I took him to my work to show him some of the equipment since we are not allowed to bring our kids to work with us on "bring your child to work day".  He taught me some of his soccer play moves and we played Apples to Apples, Battleship, and dominoes. I  was so proud that he chose to attend Sunday School today, and of coarse enjoyed it too.
The Wooden Bowl. A frail old man went to live with his son, daughter-in-law, and four-year-old grandson. The old man's hands trembled, his eyesight was blurred, and his step faltered The family ate together at the table. But the elderly grandfather's shaky hands and Failing sight made eating difficult. Peas rolled off his spoon onto the floor. When he grasped the glass, milk spilled on the tablecloth. The son and daughter-in-law became irritated with the mess. 'We must do something about father,' said the son. 'I've had enough of his spilled milk, noisy eating, and food on the floor.' So the husband and wife set a small table in the corner. There, Grandfather ate alone while the rest of the family enjoyed dinner. Since Grandfather had broken a dish or two, his food was served in a wooden bowl. When the family glanced in Grandfather's direction, sometimes he had a tear in his eye as he sat alone. Still, the only words the couple had for him were sharp admonitions when he dropped a fork or spilled food. The four-year-old watched it all in silence. One evening before supper, the father noticed his son playing with wood scraps on the floor. He asked the child sweetly, 'What are you making?' Just as sweetly, the boy responded, 'Oh, I am making a little bowl for you and Mama to eat your food in when I grow up. ' The four-year-old smiled and went back to work. The words so struck the parents so that they were speechless. Then tears started to stream down their cheeks. Though no word was spoken, both knew what must be done. That evening the husband took Grandfather's hand and gently led him back to the family table. For the remainder of his days he ate every meal with the family.. And for some reason, Neither husband nor wife seemed to care any longer when a fork was dropped, milk spilled, or the tablecloth soiled.

Cody wearing my hardhat and safety jacket- ready to flag! He wanted my jacket as my vest was too dirty?


Cody the Bucket of our Excavator- He drove the Case loader but did not want to start the Excavator



Cody in our Lowboy Truck- I think he would do a better job than I do. We also visited Mark in Radio Dispatch room and all the video cameras they have access to.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Train Crossing

We moved from North Dakota in 1966, after finishing 5th grade there. I barely remember the winters and its long overdue that I make a trip back. Jan complains that we visit more cemetery's than we visit people? Here is a video clip of a winter- not all winters are like this, but its a reminder to be thankful and to be careful in winter driving.

Friday, February 15, 2013

United Breaks Guitars

Internet has changed our lives in so many ways- even in dealing with complaints. I received this email/song describing how a disgruntled customer handled his issue with United- who have since tried to resolve the issue? He has since written a book on this. Why would someone need to hire an attorney? I look forward to flying United Next Saturday- I know they will treat us and our baggage just fine.
The power of the Internet.........A musician named Dave Carroll recently had difficulty with United Airlines. United apparently damaged his treasured Taylor guitar ($3500) during a flight. Dave spent over 9 months trying to get United to pay for damages caused by baggage handlers to his custom Taylor guitar. During his final exchange with the United Customer Relations Manager, he stated that he was left with no choice other than to create a music video for youtube exposing their lack of cooperation. The Manager responded: "Good luck with that one, pal."
So he posted a retaliatory video on youtube. The video has since received over 6 million hits. United Airlines contacted the musician and attempted settlement in exchange for pulling the video. Naturally his response was: "Good luck with that one, pal."
Taylor Guitars sent the musician 2 new custom guitars in appreciation for the product recognition from the video that has led to a sharp increase in orders.


UPDATE; This came out on news after I posted this- Thank You United for doing this. We flew to New Orleans on United and they treated us good as well. It is never too late to do good.

United Airlines holds plane so passenger can say goodbye to his dying mother

March 4, 2013
Kerry Drake’s mother was dying. She’d suffered from rheumatoid arthritis for decades and the drugs used to treat her condition had decimated her immune system. One morning his brother called him to say her time time had come.

Drake caught the next flight from San Francisco, where he works for the federal government, to Lubbock, Texas, via Houston.

“I knew this itinerary was a risk because the stopover in Houston was only about 40 minutes, and my connecting flight was the last flight to Lubbock that day,” he says. “But I needed to get there as soon as possible, so I took the risk.”

As it turns out, United flight 667 was delayed leaving San Francisco. Drake was visibly distraught. You can’t prepare for a moment like this, but now came the very real possibility that he wouldn’t have chance to see his mother before she passed away.

A flight attendant, Sofia Lares, tried to comfort him. “She said she would do everything she could and brought extra napkins for my tears,” Kerry says.

Another flight attendant, Lan Chung, asked Kerry flight number and relayed it to the captain.

Flight 667 made up some time enroute to Houston, but not enough. By the time Drake’s plane landed, his connecting flight had left the gate. At least that’s what he thought.

“As I was running up to the gate, the gate agent saw me coming and shouted, ‘Mr. Drake? We’ve been expecting you’,” he said. “That’s when I knew they had conspired to help me. She waved me onto the plane without looking at my boarding pass.”

United had held the aircraft for him. Not only did he make it to Lubbock as scheduled, but so did his luggage.

“Had I missed my flight to Lubbock, I would not have been able to tell my mom goodbye,” Drake said. “When she died, I realized I was wiping away my tears with the extra United napkins that Sofia had given me the day before.”

He says he’s grateful to the flight crew that made his farewell possible, including the attendants on his San Francisco flight and Denver-based captain Edward Goldstein and Dirk Chilian, the flight’s first officer. He also thanks Houston customer service rep Marie Robertson and all the Houston baggage handlers who got his luggage to his final destination.

United Airlines is the second recipient of our Elliott Award for Excellent Customer Service.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Let's Begin Again

I am no expert on marriage- I do believe in marriage and encourage you to not give up. Perhaps some of the sweetest words are "Let's Begin Again". We give up too soon- too often.
Should Divorce Be Harder to Get?
by FPIW
February 12, 2013
A bill aimed at lowering divorce rates by extending waiting periods for divorce was introduced in the Washington State Senate last week and is scheduled for a hearing this Friday, February 15th, at 8 am in the Senate Law and Justice Committee.

Currently Washington State requires a couple to wait 90 days before a divorce can be finalized, but SB 5614 would extend that to one year. The one-year period may be waived by the court when either party is convicted of a violent or sexual felony or if one party makes a threat of physical violence against the other party or a minor child.

The bill, with bi-partisan support, also makes information about reconciliation available to couples who have filed for divorce.

The recommendations in the bill came from a study done by William Doherty of the University of Minnesota and Leah Ward Sears, former Supreme Court Justice of the Georgia State Supreme Court. Their study, and the accompanying recommendations, is billed as the Family Second Chances Act

Their study found that about 40% of couples in divorce proceedings have one or both spouses interested in reconciliation.

Even a modest reduction in divorce rates nationwide would benefit more than 400,000 children each year and would provide significant cost savings to taxpayers.

For example:
Increasing the share of adolescents living with two biological parents to the 1970 level…would mean that 643,264 fewer children would repeat a grade. Increasing the share of adolescents in two-parent families to the 1960 level suggests that nearly three-quarters of a million fewer children would repeat a grade. Similarly, increasing marital stability to its 1980 level would result in nearly half a million fewer children suspended from school, about 200,000 fewer children engaging in delinquency or violence, a quarter of a million fewer children receiving therapy, about a quarter of a million fewer smokers, about 80,000 fewer children thinking about suicide, and about 28,000 fewer children attempting suicide.[1]

The study also analyzed the generational impact of reducing divorce. Sociologist Nicholas Wolfinger, of the University of Utah, found that divorce increased children’s chance of someday ending their own marriages by at least 50 percent. Further, grown children of divorce were 50 percent more likely to marry other children of divorce. If they did so, their increased risk of divorce was 200 percent greater than couples in which neither spouse came from a divorced family.[2]

Nationwide, scholars estimated that divorce and out-of-wedlock childbearing costs U.S. taxpayers at least $112 bil­lion every year.[3]

While the divorce problem runs much deeper than policy makers can reach, it is encouraging to see elected officials providing leadership by acknowledging the seriousness of the issue.

There is no failure except in no longer trying. ~Elbert Hubbard

Failure doesn't mean you are a failure... it just means you haven't succeeded yet. ~Robert Schuller

Never confuse a single defeat with a final defeat. ~F. Scott Fitzgerald
 
Notice the difference between what happens when a man says to himself, "I have failed three times," and what happens when he says, "I am a failure." ~S.I. Hayakawa

The men who try to do something and fail are infinitely better than those who try to do nothing and succeed. ~Lloyd Jones

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Two Brains

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Its great how God made us so different- and some of us more different than others. We have Mark Gungors video series on marriage-its very good- I love how he uses humor to bring home a point. Its nice to know that there are two sides to every story and we can actually utilize the differences make us better.  
While the Left looks for the answer to violence in gun control or poverty in welfare programs, America's greatest hope continues to be in the home. As FRC's research makes clear, an in tact married family who worships regularly is the antidote for almost every social ill tonight's speech will address.
CRIME: Only 12% of adults who attended religious services at least monthly and lived in an intact married family growing up have ever been picked up or charged by the police, compared to 21% of adults who attended church less than monthly and lived in non-intact families as children.

ECONOMIC DECLINE: Married families who worship together further lower the risks of economic instabilities both for their own families and for the nation at large, especially during serious downturns. The key investors in both physical and human capital throughout America's history have been stable, married families.

POVERTY: The married family is less likely to be poor than any other family structure. Only 5.8% of married families were living in poverty in 2009, compared to 16.9% of male householders and 29.9% of female householders. Additionally, intact families are less likely than cohabiting families or single individuals to have ever participated in the Food Stamp Program.

EDUCATION: Children from intact families exceed their parents' educational attainment (sons by 2.8 years, daughters by 2.5 years), after controlling for mother's level of education. Students who grew up in an intact married family and currently worship at least weekly have higher grade point averages, are more likely to graduate high school, and are more likely to receive a Bachelor's degree than their peers.

UNEMPLOYMENT: Married-couple families generate the most income, on average. Young married men are more likely to be in the labor force, employed, and working a full-time job than their non-married counterparts. Up to 20% of children are unequipped to compete in the modern economy because of a lack of essential skills that are formed within the intact married family.


Knock Knock
Who's there?
Sherwood

Sherwood who?
Sherwood like to be your Valentine!


Q: What did the stamp say to the envelope on Valentine's Day?
A: I'm stuck on you!


Boy: Do you have a date for Valentine’s Day?
Girl: Yes, February 14th.

Monday, February 11, 2013

Please Find A Reason

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Sometimes music can say it better than anything else. Steve and Annie Chapman have that gift of writing/singing. They are one of my favorites. So rather than say anymore with my thoughts on marriage today, just listen to "Please Find A Reason". Don't give up- please. For you who cannot view the video-Maggie Gallagher gives ten reasons below; Please Find A Reason!
TOP TEN REASONS WHY MARRIAGE IS GOOD FOR YOU
by Maggie Gallagher

When Americans debate the value of marriage, most attention focuses on the potential harm to children of divorce or illegitimacy, and for good reason. Mountains of research tell us that children reared outside of intact marriages are much more likely than other kids to slip into poverty, become victims of child abuse, fail at school and drop out, use illegal drugs, launch into premature sexual activity, become unwed teen mothers, divorce, commit suicide and experience other signs of mental illness, become physically ill, and commit crimes and go to jail. On average, children reared outside of marriage are less successful in their careers, even after controlling not only for income but also for parental conflict.

Yes, marriage protects children. And yes, marriage therefore protects taxpayers and society from a broad and deep set of costs, personal and communal. But there is another case for marriage, equally significant, that you probably haven't heard. Marriage is a powerful creator and sustainer of human and social capital for adults as well as children, about as important as education when it comes to promoting the health, wealth, and well-being of adults and communities. For most Americans, this is news. When it comes to adults, the case for lifelong marriage has been framed in exclusively moral, spiritual, and emotional terms: one side argues for personal liberation from marriage, the other urges parents to sacrifice for God's and/or the kids' sake.

These are important considerations to be sure. Parents surely should be willing to make appropriate sacrifices for their kids' sake. But framing the marriage debate solely in those terms obscures as much as it reveals. It misses the profound benefits that lasting marriage confers on adults. And it overestimates considerably the likelihood that divorce will, in fact, lead to greater happiness for the individual.

Recently, I had the opportunity to review the scientific evidence on the consequences of marriage for adults with University of Chicago scholar Linda J. Waite for our new book, The Case for Marriage. What I found surprised me. Quietly, with little fanfare, a broad and deep body of scientific literature has been accumulating that affirms what Genesis teaches: it is not good for man to be alone—no, nor woman neither. In virtually every way that social scientists can measure, married people do much better than the unmarried or divorced: they live longer, healthier, happier, sexier, and more affluent lives.

10. IT'S SAFER. Marriage lowers the risk that both men and women will become victims of violence, including domestic violence. A 1994 Justice Department report, based on the National Crime Victimization Survey, found that single and divorced women were four to five times more likely to be victims of violence in any given year than wives; bachelors were four times more likely to be violent-crime victims than husbands. Two-thirds of acts of violence against women committed by intimate partners were not committed by husbands but by boyfriends (whether live-in or not) or former husbands or boyfriends. As one scholar sums up the relevant research: "Regardless of methodology, the studies yielded similar results: cohabitors engage in more violence than spouses." Linda Waite conducted an analysis of the National Survey of Families and Households for our new book. She found that, even after controlling for education, race, age, and gender, people who live together are still three times more likely to say their arguments got physical (such as kicking, hitting, or shoving) in the past year than married couples.

9. IT CAN SAVE YOUR LIFE. Married people live longer and healthier lives. The power of marriage is particularly evident in late middle age. When Linda Waite and a colleague, for example, analyzed mortality differentials in a very large, nationally representative sample, they found an astonishingly large "marriage gap" in longevity: nine out of ten married guys who are alive at 48 will make it to age 65, compared with just six in ten comparable single guys (controlling for race, education, and income). For women, the protective benefits of marriage are also powerful, though not quite as large. Nine out of ten wives alive at age 48 will live to be senior citizens, compared with just eight out of ten divorced and single women.

In fact, according to statisticians Bernard Cohen and I-Sing Lee, who compiled a catalog of relative mortality risks, "being unmarried is one of the greatest risks that people voluntarily subject themselves to." Having heart disease, for example, reduces a man's life expectancy by just under six years, while being unmarried chops almost ten years off a man's life. This is not just a selection effect: even controlling for initial health status, sick people who are married live longer than their unmarried counterparts. Having a spouse, for example, lowers a cancer patient's risk of dying from the disease as much as being in an age category ten years younger. A recent study of outcomes for surgical patients found that just being married lowered a patient's risk of dying in the hospital. For perhaps more obvious reasons, the risk a hospital patient will be discharged to a nursing home was two and a half times greater if the patient was unmarried. Scientists who have studied immune functioning in the laboratory find that happily married couples have better-functioning immune systems. Divorced people, even years after the divorce, show much lower levels of immune function.

8. IT CAN SAVE YOUR KID'S LIFE. Children lead healthier, longer lives if parents get and stay married. Adults who fret about second-hand smoke and drunk driving would do well to focus at least some of their attention on this point. In one long-term study that followed a sample of highly advantaged children (middle-class whites with IQs of at least 135) up through their seventies, a parent's divorce knocked four years off the adult child's life expectancy. Forty-year-olds from divorced homes were three times more likely to die from all causes than 40-year-olds whose parents stayed married.

7. YOU WILL EARN MORE MONEY. Men today tend to think of marriage as a consumption item—a financial burden. But a broad and deep body of scientific literature suggests that for men especially, marriage is a productive institution—as important as education in boosting a man's earnings. In fact, getting a wife may increase an American male's salary by about as much as a college education. Married men make, by some estimates, as much as 40 percent more money than comparable single guys, even after controlling for education and job history. The longer a man stays married, the higher the marriage premium he receives. Wives' earnings also benefit from marriage, but they decline when motherhood enters the picture. Childless white wives get a marriage wage premium of 4 percent, and black wives earn 10 percent more than comparable single women.

6. DID I MENTION YOU'LL GET MUCH RICHER? Married people not only make more money, they manage money better and build more wealth together than either would alone. At identical income levels, for example, married people are less likely to report "economic hardship" or trouble paying basic bills. The longer you stay married, the more assets you build; by contrast, length of cohabitation has no relationship to wealth accumulation. On the verge of retirement, the average married couple has accumulated assets worth about $410,000, compared with $167,000 for the never-married and $154,000 for the divorced. Couples who stayed married in one study saw their assets increase twice as fast as those who had remained divorced over a five-year period.

5. YOU'LL TAME HIS CHEATIN' HEART (HERS, TOO). Marriage increases sexual fidelity. Cohabiting men are four times more likely to cheat than husbands, and cohabiting women are eight times more likely to cheat than wives. Marriage is also the only realistic promise of permanence in a romantic relationship. Just one out of ten cohabiting couples are still cohabiting after five years. By contrast, 80 percent of couples marrying for the first time are still married five years later, and close to 60 percent (if current divorce rates continue) will marry for life. One British study found that biological parents who marry are three times more likely still to be together two years later than biological two-parent families who cohabit, even after controlling for maternal age, education, economic hardship, previous relationship failure, depression, and relationship quality. Marriage may be riskier than it once was, but when it comes to making love last, there is still no better bet.

4. YOU WON'T GO BONKERS. Marriage is good for your mental health. Married men and women are less depressed, less anxious, and less psychologically distressed than single, divorced, or widowed Americans. By contrast, getting divorced lowers both men's and women's mental health, increasing depression and hostility, and lowering one's self-esteem and sense of personal mastery and purpose in life.

And this is not just a statistical illusion: careful researchers who have tracked individuals as they move toward marriage find that it is not just that happy, healthy people marry; instead, getting married gives individuals a powerful mental health boost. Nadine Marks and James Lambert looked at changes in the psychological health of a large sample of Americans in the late eighties and early nineties. They measured psychological well-being at the outset and then watched what happened to individuals over the next years as they married, remained single, or divorced. When people married, their mental health improved—consistently and substantially. When people divorced, they suffered substantial deterioration in mental and emotional well-being, including increases in depression and declines in reported happiness. Those who divorced over this period also reported a lower sense of personal mastery, less positive relations with others, less sense of purpose in life, and lower levels of self-acceptance than their married peers did.

Married men are only half as likely as bachelors and one-third as likely as divorced guys to take their own lives. Wives are also much less likely to commit suicide than single, divorced, or widowed women. Married people are much less likely to have problems with alcohol abuse or illegal drugs. In a recent national survey, one out of four single men ages 19 to 26 say their drinking causes them problems at work or problems with aggression, compared with just one out of seven married guys this age.

3. IT WILL MAKE YOU HAPPY. For most people, the joys of the single life and of divorce are overrated. Overall, 40 percent of married people, compared with about a quarter of singles or cohabitors, say they are "very happy" with life in general. Married people are also only about half as likely as singles or cohabitors to say they are unhappy with their lives.

How happy are the divorced? If people divorce in order to be happy, as we are often told, the majority should demand their money back. Just 18 percent of divorced adults say they are "very happy," and divorced adults are twice as likely as married folk to say they are "not too happy" with life in general. Only a minority of divorcing adults go on to make marriages that are happier than the one they left. "Divorce or be miserable," certain cultural voices tell us, but, truth be told, "Divorce and be miserable" is at least as likely an outcome.

This is not just an American phenomenon. One recent study by Steven Stack and J. Ross Eshleman of 17 developed nations found that "married persons have a significantly higher level of happiness than persons who are not married," even after controlling for gender, age, education, children, church attendance, financial satisfaction, and self-reported health. Further, "the strength of the association between being married and being happy is remarkably consistent across nations." Marriage boosted financial satisfaction and health. But being married conferred a happiness advantage over and above its power to improve the pocketbook and the health chart. Cohabitation, by contrast, did not increase financial satisfaction or perceived health, and the boost to happiness from having a live-in lover was only about a quarter of that of being married. Another large study, of 100,000 Norwegians, found that, with both men and women, "the married have the highest level of subjective well-being, followed by the widowed." Even long-divorced people who cohabited were not any happier than singles.

2. YOUR KIDS WILL LOVE YOU MORE. Divorce weakens the bonds between parents and children over the long run. Adult children of divorce describe relationships with both their mother and their father less positively, on average, and they are about 40 percent less likely than adults from intact marriages to say they see either parent at least several times a week.

1. YOU'LL HAVE BETTER SEX, MORE OFTEN. Despite the lurid Sex in the City marketing that promises singles erotic joys untold, both husbands and wives are more likely to report that they have an extremely satisfying sex life than are singles or cohabitors. (Divorced women were the least likely to have a sex life they found extremely satisfying emotionally.) For one thing, married people are more likely to have a sex life. Single men are 20 times more likely, and single women ten times more likely, not to have had sex even once in the past year than the married. (Almost a quarter of single guys and 30 percent of single women lead sexless lives.)

Married people are also the most likely to report a highly satisfying sex life. Wives, for example, are almost twice as likely as divorced and never-married women to have a sex life that a) exists and b) is extremely satisfying emotionally. Contrary to popular lore, for men, having a wife beats shacking up by a wide margin: 50 percent of husbands say sex with their partner is extremely satisfying physically, compared with 39 percent of cohabiting men.

How can a piece of paper work such miracles? For surprisingly, the piece of paper, and not just the personal relationship, matters a great deal. People who live together, for the most part, don't reap the same kinds of benefits that men and women who marry do. Something about marriage as a social institution—a shared aspiration and a public, legal vow—gives wedlock the power to change individuals' lives.

By increasing confidence that this partnership will last, marriage allows men and women to specialize—to take on those parts of life's tasks, from developing an interesting social life to getting money out of insurance companies, that one person does better or enjoys more than the other. Though this specialization is often along traditional gender lines, it doesn't have to be. Even childless married couples benefit from splitting up the work. Married households have twice the talent, twice the time, and twice the labor pool of singles. Over time, as spouses specialize, each actually produces more in both market and non-market goods than singles who have to shoulder all of life's tasks on their own.

But because marriage is a partnership in the whole of life, backed up by family, community, and religious values, marriage can do what economic partnerships don't: give a greater sense of meaning and purpose to life (a reason to exercise or cut back on booze, work harder, and to keep plugging even in the middle of those times when the marriage may not feel gratifying at all). Married people are both responsible for and responsible to another human being, and both halves of that dynamic lead the married to live more responsible, fruitful, and satisfying lives. Marriage is a transformative act, changing the way two people look at each other, at the future, and at their roles in society. And it changes the way significant others—from family to congregation to insurance companies and the IRS—look at and treat that same couple. Sexual fidelity, an economic union, a parenting alliance, the promise of care that transcends day-to-day emotions: all these are what give a few words mumbled before a clergyman or judge the power to change lives.

What proportion of unhappily married couples who stick it out stay miserable? The latest data show that within five years, just 12 percent of very unhappily married couples who stick it out are still unhappy; 70 percent of the unhappiest couples now describe their marriage as "very" or "quite" happy.

Just as good marriages go bad, bad marriages go good. And they have a better chance of doing so in a society that recognizes the value of marriage than one that sings the statistically dubious joys of divorce

Sunday, February 10, 2013

National Marriage Week USA

I think its a great idea to have National Marriage Week USA to promote marriage and offer helps.  There are many worthy organizations who have promoted marriage for years who I highly recommend and support. You will find 56 blogs of mine, that have marriage labels on them that I hope you have visited. I am proud of my pastor/church who promote marriage- Next Sunday don't miss his sermon on Marriage and how to Stay in Love. On April 15th our church is hosting "The Good Fight" marriage conference. And my hats off to those who are married over 50 years- what examples to watch/follow.   Happy National Marriage Week!
Let’s Strengthen Marriage seeks to inspire a marriage ministry in every church across the nation. Local churches are uniquely suited to serve the relational and spiritual needs of its community.
Ideally, every church could plan and provide for:
• marriage preparation classes,
• marriage enrichment courses and small groups,
• courtship and dating seminars, and
• parenting instruction.

FREE MARRIAGE WEBINAR: View it now at http://www.marriagewebinar.org
Resources for Clergy -- Sermons, articles and research to assist pastors in preach and teaching for the sake of strengthening marriage.http://www.marriageresourcesforclergy.com

The Marriage Course and Marriage Prep Course are each 8-week courses, uniquely created for churches by the highly respected Alpha Course, which is used in more than 5000 churches throughout the United States and extensively throughout the world: to www.themarriagecourseusa.org

Family Life is a Christian organization helping couples build healthier marriages and families. A great resource for churches, Family Life offers a popular Homebuilders Bible Studies and Weekend to Remember Marriage Conferences. Learn more at  http://www.familylife.com

"For Your Marriage" is an initiative of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, with many resources at http://www.foryourmarriage.org /

Marriage Savers has worked in 200 cities to help clergy across all denominational lines join together to sign a public covenant to prepare engaged couples for lifelong marriage, enrich existing marriages, and restore troubled marriages. Find out more about how to form A Community Marriage Policy at  http://www.marriagesavers.org

Coordinate with the largest church facility in your city to host a Love and Respect weekend seminar in your area. Love and Respect typically draws crowds of 2000 to 4000 attendees. More information at  www.loveandrespect.com

Host a screening of the movie “Fireproof” and follow up with The Love Dare book. Fireproof has a whole church campaign and study kit at  www.FireproofOutreach.com

Watch or host a screening of the new movie "No Greater Love" on DVD--a dramatic story of faith and forgiveness. Info at  http://www.nogreaterlovethemovie.com

Dr. James Dobsons and Focus on the Family have helped me so much. https://www.facebook.com/#!/DrJamesDobsonsFamilyTalk?sk=timeline

And here is the web site I received much of this information from- check it out as well as leave any other suggested helps in comments below. http://www.nationalmarriageweekusa.org/

Saturday, February 9, 2013

Comedian Jeff Allen (3 of 3)

This is National Marriage week and I love to hear of success marriages and those who have gone the extra mile to make it work.  I am praying for your marriage to Succeed and I know it is Gods Will that it does. God created marraige. Christ thought so much of marriage- he likened us to "the bride of Christ" who he will come again for some day. In the Bible days, the groom had to pay a price for his bride and then he would go away to prepare a house for them so they could actually be married as we know it. His father would say when the house was complete, because as you know, most sons idea of a done house when is looking at marriage- and so if you asked the son, he would say, to when asked when was the big day?, "Only My Father knows".  My heavenly father is building a mansion for me in heaven as I type. I hope you are ready and have accepted Christ as your savior. 
The worried housewife sprang to the telephone when it rang and listened with relief to the kindly voice in her ear. "How are you,darling?" she said. "What kind of a day are you having?" "Oh, mother," said the housewife, breaking into bitter tears, "I've had such a bad day. The baby won't eat and the washing machine brokedown. I haven't had a chance to go shopping, and besides, I've just sprained my ankle and I have to hobble around. On top of that, the house is a mess and I'...m supposed to have two couples to dinner tonight." The mother was shocked and was at once all sympathy. "Oh, darling," she said, "sit down, relax, and close your eyes. I'll be over in half an hour. I'll do your shopping, clean up the house, and cook your dinner for you. I'll feed the baby and I'll call a repairman I know who'll be at your house to fix the washing machine promptly. Now stop crying. I'll do everything. In fact, I'll even call George at the office and tell him he ought to come home and help out for once." "George?" said the housewife. "Who's George?" "Why, George! Your husband!....Is this 223-1374? "No, this is 223-1375." "Oh, I'm sorry. I guess I have the wrong number." There was a short pause and the housewife said, "Does this mean you're not coming over?"
I told my wife I feel old, fat, bald, useless, and stupid. She said, "Don’t be silly—you’re not old."

Friday, February 8, 2013

Comedian Jeff Allen (2 of 3)

I love to hear of marriages that have lasted over 50 years- I miss Paul Harvey honoring those who had reached 70 years together. Today I heard of a couple married 80 years. Marriage is work, but I am thankful God made marriage. I think every week should be marriage week- but this week is actually called National Marriage Week, so only fitting each day I post a video dealing with Marriage. Today is part 2 of 3 from Jeff Allen who saved his marriage with Gods Help.
"Your marriage is in trouble if your wife says, "You're only interested in one thing," and you can't remember what it is."

 
Louis was talking to his friend Max. "There's nothing I wouldn't do for my Becky," he said, "and there's nothing Becky wouldn't do for me. And that's how we go through life - doing nothing for each other.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Comedian Jeff Allen (1 of 3)

Feb 7th thru 14th is National Marriage Week. I would like to post this video, it is part l of 3 parts, the story of Jeff Allen's marriage- I like it when people can turn their lives around and work at their marraiges!  I found it very encouraging, and I enjoy his comedy.
A Man in marriage must decide if he wants to be right or to be happy? I want you to meet the worlds happiest man.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

George Beverly Shea

Although Southern Gospel may be my favorite music- George Beverly Shea is one of my most respected writers/singers. I purchased one of his albums as a child and have heard him live at Billy Graham Crusades of coarse. He has written numerous songs including I'd Rather have Jesus. And rather than listen to me, let me post the words from a web site by Billy Graham Below. Thank you for your faithfulness and example Mr. George Beverly Shea.
George Beverly Shea, 104, of Montreat, often called "America's beloved Gospel singer," passed away Tuesday (April 16, 2013) after a brief illness. Best known as the soloist of Billy Graham Crusades, George Beverly Shea was born February 1, 1909, in Winchester, Ontario, Canada, and was a son of the late Rev. A.J. Shea and Maude Whitney Shea. Shea's first public singing was in the choir of his father's Wesleyan Methodist Church. George Beverly Shea married the late Erma Scarfe in 1934 at his father's former pastorate in Ottawa, Ontario. They had two children, Ron and Elaine. Erma passed away in 1976. In 1985, Shea was remarried to Karlene Aceto at a ceremony in Billy and Ruth Graham's home in Montreat, N.C. Mr. Shea attended Annesley College in Ottawa from 1926 to 1928, then Houghton (N.Y.) College from 1928 to 1929. From 1929 until 1938. Mr. Shea worked in radio broadcasting as an avocation while employed as a clerk in the headquarters of Mutual of New York insurance company. From 1938 to 1944, Mr. Shea was an announcer and staff soloist at WMBI radio in Chicago. While in this position, he met a young pastor named Billy Graham in 1943. Graham had taken over a radio program called "Songs in the Night" at Chicago's WCFL, and, having recalled hearing Mr. Shea's radio singing, enlisted him to help with the broadcast. That was the beginning of a long association between Graham and Mr. Shea. In 1947, Mr. Shea went to Graham's hometown, Charlotte, to sing in one of the first of Graham's citywide Crusades. Mr. Shea devotedly preceded the evangelist in song in Crusades over the span of nearly 60 years. In his autobiography, "Just As I Am," Graham writes, "I have sometimes said that I would feel lost getting up to preach if Bev were not there to prepare the way through an appropriate song." Also a prolific recording artist and composer, Mr. Shea recorded more than 70 albums of sacred music. At 23, he wrote the music to one of his best-known solos, "I'd Rather Have Jesus," to words by Mrs. Rhea H. Miller. The poem had been left on the family piano by Mr. Shea's mother, and after reading the words he sat at the piano and composed the tune. Mr. Shea was the recipient of 10 Grammy nominations, earned a Grammy Award in 1965 and was presented with a Lifetime Achievement Award by the Grammy organization in 2011. He was also a member of the Gospel Music Association Hall of Fame, earning induction in 1978. For his significant contributions to Gospel music, he was inducted into the Religious Broadcasting Hall of Fame in February 1996. Mr. Shea was also inducted into the inaugural class of the Conference of Southern Baptist Evangelists' "Hall of Faith" in 2008.  Mr. Shea's public funeral service was held at 3 p.m. Sunday (April 21, 2013)