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Happiness is How We Treat Our Families

Think for a moment how we treat our friends. We laugh with them, share good times, listen to them, and always try to be fair. We comfort them when things are going bad, and we would never interrupt them or allow ourselves to be distracted while they are talking to us. In the workplace, we treat our coworkers with respect...distracted while they are talking to us. In the workplace, we treat our coworkers with respect and would not dare tell them to shut up or accept a kind gesture without saying thank you. But how do we treat our spouses and children when we get home out of the view of people who admire us.

Happiness is how we treat our families

Last week I went to a banquet where the speaker spoke of the most crucial trait young people should strive to be successful in life. He said how we treat others in the workplace lays the foundation for success in life. If I were to add anything to what the speaker said that night, it would be that how we treat our families also lays the foundation for happiness in life.

For some people, it is easy to be kind to the people they work alongside. However, many successful people in the workplace are not always successful communicators in the home. A good example is a child that came quietly into the kitchen while his mother was cooking dinner. He startled her when he yelled the surprise. She became angry and scolded him for yelling and tracking mud into the house, and sent him to his room, even as he was trying to tell her something.

Later she felt terrible for yelling at her child and remembered he said he had a surprise for her. She went into his room, where he had fallen asleep on his bed. She gently woke him and asked him what the surprise he was trying to tell her about when he was in the kitchen was.

The child smiled and opened his hand to display a small crushed blue flower. “It’s for you, mom,” he said. “I found it in the grass, and I knew you would like it because it was blue.” The mother took her child in her arms and told him she was sorry for yelling at him. Children are so forgiving, and we should be glad because we sometimes fail to remember that they have feelings too.

Having a friend is a beautiful gift in life, and having a good relationship with our peers in the workplace is vital to our success. Jobs are relevant, but for most, jobs are what we do to provide for the needs of our families. If we don’t take care of the relationships we have at home, then we can lose our purpose in working so hard.

Children and spouses deserve the same respect we give to our coworkers and our friends. The essential things in life start at home. It is how we treat our families because long after the job is over, the relationship you build with your family will be there.

If we treat our children and spouses with respect we give our coworkers and share the best of ourselves with them as we do our friends, think about how relationships would grow and possibly heal.

Deana Landers
Read more at MorningCoffeeBeans

Weekly Stories
I am passionate about writing stories and love to share them with readers . 😀

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I have had many roles in life — Pastor’s Wife, Nurse/Health Educator, Writer, Motivational Speaker and Blogger @ https://www.morningcoffeebeans.com


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I didn't notice the big black and brown cat perched on the other side of the fence peering into our backyard. I was busy watching the gray and white mocking bird with a long black tail dipping its beak into the cool water inside the birdbath.

I didn’t notice the big black and brown cat perched on the other side of the fence peering into our backyard. I was busy watching the gray and white mocking bird with a long black tail dipping its beak into the cool water inside the birdbath. It is a sight I can see most any time of the day, because...

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It is a sight I can see most any time of the day, because our yard is usually filled with birds. We have Sparrows that build nests in the eave of our back porch, doves that nest in the big tree that shade the bird feeders, Woodpeckers hammering away at all hours of the day and red winged blackbirds flocking hungrily on the platform feeder. Colorful little Finches hop on the limbs of the potted rubber plant, a Tufted Titmouse shyly checks out the feeder that hangs from the tree limb, and Hummingbirds dart between the honeysuckle bush and the nectar feeders.

My sister often teased me for sitting on the back porch and taking pictures of the birds. She says I should get a life, but watching birds makes me feel like I have a good life. It's a hobby I enjoy immensely. We buy a variety of seeds to attract different kinds of birds, fill our feeders each morning, make sure water is dripping in the birdbath, and keep binoculars close to check out new species that may come by. So I guess you would say birds are our pets. We can't touch them and we don't name them, but we look forward every morning and evening to the time we spend watching them. Like many people who enjoy birds, I can tell when a new bird comes into the yard. That's why I came to the patio doors that morning. I recognized the familiar sound of the Mockingbird.

After watching him for a moment, I turned away to get some meal worms I had bought to lure him to the feeder. I returned just in time to see the big black and brown cat lunge over the wood fence and pounce on the unsuspecting little creature. He attacked in such a swift movement the Mockingbird never knew what hit him. The cat's teeth covered both his wings and the bird seemed paralyzed. I open the door and ran toward the cat yelling, but it was too late. Just as abruptly as he entered our yard, he was gone, with the Mockingbird securely in his mouth.

Cats can be pets or predators. It depends on whose backyard they are in. In our daughter's home, their big beautiful black cat named Ginga is a wonderful pet. They had her neutered when they first got her because they felt they could only take care of the one cat. They feed her well, make sure she gets her immunizations and hardly ever let her go outside. In our yard and every other person who enjoys the sights and sounds of birds, cats are predators and intruders. If a cat has no one to care for it, its natural survival instinct is to hunt. Even if they are cared for, they are natural predators when they are allowed to roam the neighborhood.

One of the saddest sights is a thin, sick looking cat that is obviously starving. Some of them will get run over by a car and others will die of diseases. It may be easy to say yes when someone asks if you want a cute little kitten for your child, but the responsibility of caring for that animal should be considered. First of all, they grow up and they aren't always cute. Second, they have to be fed, watered and kept in the owner's home or yard. Third, they should have their immunizations and be neutered, unless the owner is prepared to care for more cats. According to the United States Census Bureau there are over 60 million pet cats. Of those 60 million cats, the American Bird Conservancy estimates about 40 million are unsupervised outside either part of the day or all the time. That means that only about 35% of cat owners keep their cats indoors at all times or constantly supervised while outdoors.

I was really disappointed when the Mockingbird was attacked in my back yard, but it wasn't the first time. I spend a lot of time chasing stray cats out of our yard. It's not that I don't like cats; it's just that I like birds better.

Deana Landers
Read more at MorningCoffeeBeans

Weekly Stories
I am passionate about writing stories and love to share them with readers . 😀

Keep in touch By receiving my weekly stories

“Doodlebug, doodlebug, come out tonight, doodlebug, doodlebug, your house is on fire.” The little chant still echoes in my head when I see a familiar cone-shaped track spiraling downward into the soft, warm sand.

"Doodlebug, doodlebug, come out tonight, doodlebug, doodlebug, your house is on fire." The little chant still echoes in my head when I see a familiar cone-shaped track spiraling downward into the soft, warm sand. My brother and I sang this tune over and over while we lured these short, hairy insects from their homes in the warm Georgia sand when...My brother and I sang this tune over and over while we lured these short, hairy insects from their homes in the warm Georgia sand when we were children, using only a straw or a small stick. We placed the stick in the middle of the soft cone-like entrance to their pits and wiggled it around.

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After a while, a little round bug surfaced, and we laughed at our conquest. We then went on to the next inverted mound. We played that game for hours in the afternoon until it was time to go inside. The only thing we needed was a little stick and a large amount of curiosity.

I discovered these same little swirls in the sand as I was enjoying the yellow, orange, and burgundy colored cacti blooming one spring day while walking in the beautiful Arroyo Park where I lived in south Texas.

When I was a child, I never thought of what they were or what they were doing there. It was just something to do when we were playing outside in the dirt. It seems that the doodlebugs we tormented with our little straws are called antlions. They are small voracious predators that eat ants and other insects.

In southwest Virginia, some species hide under bits of debris or wood and attack passing insects. They dig a shallow cone-shaped pit and wait at the bottom for an ant or other insects to slip on the loose sand and fall in, only to be immediately devoured. In the process of making their pits, antlion larvae create a spiral-shaped trail in the sand, which is how they get the nickname, doodlebug.

I saw numerous doodlebug pits and lots of busy ants among the sandy trails endlessly marching single file between their underground nests and their food source as they were stockpiling for the winter.

We can learn a lot from the ants, such as the value of working and saving up for harder times, and not living quiet lives. However, I observed a lot of those busy ants hopelessly struggling to climb out of the pits of the hungry antlions.

I had recently had surgery and needed to take time off from work. The hardest part of consenting to have surgery was spending six weeks at home recovering with nothing to do and no responsibilities.

Unfortunately, if we don’t stop when we need to, we may miss out on some important things around us, and we also run the risk of having health problems that could slow us down permanently.

I think that’s what happens to ants. They know the antlion’s pits are all around them, but they become so busy that they forget to look for those spiraling swirls in the sand that might slow them down or eventually destroy them.

Walking through the park in the middle of the day and squatting down to observe the little things in life brought back memories of more peaceful times when I wasn’t so busy.

I realized then that six weeks of doing much of nothing, but concentrating on getting stronger wasn’t that difficult. It felt good to empty my mind and let go of the reins a little–to remember the games I used to play, the joy of sitting beside my brother, singing silly songs, and feeling warm sand sift between my bare toes...doodlebug, doodlebug…come out tonight…come out tonight…

Deana Landers
Read more at MorningCoffeeBeans

Weekly Stories
I am passionate about writing stories and love to share them with readers . 😀

Keep in touch By receiving my weekly stories

Our daughter was always afraid of the dark when she was little. She would see these monsters looming over her bed or swaying in the dark and cry out to us. Her dad or I would go into her room and turn the light on to show her that the monsters were just pieces of furniture or the curtain moving in the wind of an open window. Her dad would say, “See, if you turn on the light, it’s not so scary, is it?”

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Our daughter was always afraid of the dark when she was little. She would see these monsters looming over her bed or swaying in the dark and cry out to us. Her dad or I would go into her room and turn the light on to show her that the monsters were just pieces of furniture or the curtain moving...

She had a scare during her second pregnancy that made her feel as helpless as that little girl. She got a phone call from a nurse at her doctor's office in Leesburg, Virginia. The call was to inform her that she tested positive for toxoplasmosis. This is a common infection caused by a one-celled organism called Toxoplasma Gondii that infects humans, birds and animals worldwide. A person can become infected by eating under cooked meat, working in the garden without gloves or being exposed to cat feces, such as in litter boxes. It is not dangerous to most people. The average person develops immunity to Toxoplasma Gondii after becoming infected, but when newly infected, you may feel like you have the flu, or may not feel ill at all. However, it can be life threatening to the unborn fetus if the mother is infected in the first trimester of pregnancy. It is then called congenital toxoplasmosis. That is the reason the test results were so frightening to our daughter. She was eight weeks pregnant.

When my daughter asked the nurse what that meant, she told her that the infection could cause abortion of the fetus or severe malformation at birth, including brain damage or blindness. Christy’s first reaction was much like the ones she had when she was a little girl and woke up at night seeing monsters in her room; she panicked. She had a cat, she loves gardening and she just came back from a cruise, where she remembered eating a steak cooked medium rare. By the time she located me on my cell phone, she was hysterical. After a time trying to calm her down, I finally reminded her that the one thing we could be sure of is that regardless of what she had to deal with, she was not alone. Her family and God’s care would surround her. Then I told her we had to check into this more. That seemed to calm her down.

By the time my husband and I sat down for breakfast the next morning to talk about the situation the phone rang again and it was our daughter, sounding much better. “Mom, the one thing Dad has always told us is to get the facts before we panic,” she said with confidence. “That’s true,” I told her, “so what facts do you have?” She told me she called her previous gynecologist and asked them if they had tested her for toxoplasmosis. She had tested positive three years earlier with her first child, but they were not worried, because they had done additional testing that showed a latent infection.

What the nurse failed to tell her on the phone was that if she tested positive before her pregnancy, there was little or no danger to the baby. In other words, she had found the light switch and the monster lurking in the dark was just a chair in the corner. One that she needed to know about, but she didn’t have to be afraid of. Fear is like that. It can be a monster, but dealing with it is as easy as getting the facts.

Our daughter was always afraid of the dark when she was little. She would see these monsters looming over her bed or swaying in the dark and cry out to us. Her dad or I would go into her room and turn the light on to show her that the monsters were just pieces of furniture or the curtain moving...

The fact about toxoplasmosis is that in most areas of the US, fetal toxoplasmosis infection is rare (one to 10 in 10,000), and routine prenatal screening for it is therefore not required in this country, although many doctors do them. Dr. Estela Sosa, of Devi Women's Center, said that she does the testing according to the information she receives on the patient information sheet at their initial visit. “If a patient has a pet or has traveled then we would do the testing,” she said. “However, patients don’t always tell you everything on the questionnaire. That is why it is important to come back in for the test results and follow-up visits.” Going in for test results would have been a lot less frightening for our daughter. Sosa agreed, because she said that talking to a patient face to face makes a lot of difference. “You can ask questions, see their fears, and give them the information they need better in person.”

Other facts that helped our daughter were that she didn’t have to get rid of her cat, because she could not be infected again. Also, patients who find out that they have tested positive for toxoplasmosis do not have to panic, because it is not always fatal for their baby. If caught early it can be treated with antibiotics. When our daughter found out all the facts, she was alright. She wasn’t afraid anymore. That’s what information can do for us. It is like turning on a light in a dark room.

Deana Landers
Read more at MorningCoffeeBeans

Weekly Stories
I am passionate about writing stories and love to share them with readers . 😀

Keep in touch By receiving my weekly stories

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