Friday, January 30, 2015

IT'S ALL IN THERE IN YOUR THOUGHTS, TO START WITH


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It's a lovely morning outside my window. A gentle breeze rocking the tree tops as birds flit from tree to tree with their song. The pale blue sky peppered with clouds of varying shapes and sizes gliding along unmindful of the turmoil and mess of the earth down below.
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Well, it is a messed up world truly and if anyone be looking for blame... it's all about people. People run policies, institutions, organizations, religions, armies, and government. People inhabit neighborhoods, communities, towns, cities, countries, the world. It's people who promote good or bad..... do good or bad..... espouse good or bad..... think good or bad. It's all about people, admit it or not.
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People who bother or who don't bother to watch what they think will get the world.... life.... or day they each deserve. You reap whatsoever you shall sow.
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The world is a wonderful place according to your thoughts... and the opposite is also true. This is true in our small mundane lives and too in the bigger grander scheme of things the world provides.
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What to do? Just be careful what you think. It all begins there in the head. Then you come to choose either to build or destroy..... shape or break..... create or annihilate. It all is in there in your thoughts, to start with. So is responsibility and accountability.
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It's tough, you say. Habits die hard. I know, but we could at least try.

Wishing for you and yours a blessed day.



Monday, January 26, 2015

THE WILLINGNESS TO LEARN IS A CHOICE





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"We all have to remember we have the ability to learn and grow constantly. Our minds are endless sponges for information and we can mold ourselves as we wish." -- (James Michael Sama)
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Had a chat on the phone with a friend recently...
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"So anong bago?" (So what's new?) ... I asked her good-naturedly.
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"Ay naku, ganun pa rin!" (Same old things.) ... she replied in a monotone.
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" Pambihira! Meron naman sigurong bago sa araw mo dyan." (C'mon, surely there must be something different today.) ... I nudged her further hoping to coax her out of her gloom.
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"Anong bago ka dyan! Matanda na ko noh, ano pa bang bago ang mangyayari?"  (You kidding me! What new things could happen to an oldie like me huh?!) ... she countered. Yes, she's in her sixties.
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Well. I'll end the chat at that point though of course it went on further and she ended up laughing at herself. Thank goodness for that!! I'll give her credit for not losing her sense of humor. Pheeww!
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Allow me now to say my thoughts ......
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I cannot NOT learn anything or something in my day. Can't let the day and everything that's in it both old and new or good and bad to simply go pass me by. The good is for us to enjoy.. and the bad is to teach us a lesson or two. Being past one's prime does not have to mean that one stops learning or that everything else is beyond one's learning. It certainly doesn't mean that I have learned all that I should be learning either. That should be so stupid and vain of me to ever think in such manner.
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True that to some things I can honestly say that ... I have 'been there-done that' and smile knowingly with the understanding and maturity which living through life has granted me. But to newer things or ideas my reply would be ... 'That's interesting; tell me more.' Believe me, there's so much more to learn about life that it would take a thousand life times more to learn them all. One life time is never enough. It never is. But in wanting to learn one should avoid feeling smug about the process.
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There is so much that can happen in a day. To this I honestly say that there is plenty that would rouse your mind, heart, and soul to renew itself as the day does every morning. Each day is a treasure and you the treasure hunter will surely find your gold. But you must look hard and harder to find it. Sometimes it hides itself beneath all the dirt and mud of strife and bad news. But it's there just waiting for you to dig it out, clean it up, and be used for your own benefit and too to serve others with. Most essentially, to give glory and praise to a wonderful God who set up the day just for you. Each person among the zillions of people inhabiting the earth with his own day that's a total fit. A total fit. That's how God works.
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Nobody is too young or too old to learn; don't let age stop you.
Blessings to you and your dear ones, friends. Have a great day!


Saturday, January 24, 2015

MAYBE IT'S TIME TO LAUGH AGAIN - (A repost from long ago)





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This is an old post in the blog from long ago but I'm bringing it here because somebody has to see this.  I do, too.
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Maybe it’s time to laugh again I heard someone say. I think he is right. It is indeed time to look at life from a perspective other than today’s traffic report or the evening news. It is time to give the child within us permission to look at life and laugh again. It is time we realize that life was meant to be enjoyed, not endured.
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Remember how we once were when we were children? When everything we saw was fun and funny? And every new experience was a great adventure? That nobody could hurt us bad enough to make us want to sulk and mope all day? We’d snap out of it just as quickly as we finished off our fries. That we’d crouch on our knees to peer at a caterpillar in the bush? That an iced bar in hand had every friend’s tongue licking on it, too? Such generous and open hearts we had. Such thirst for wonder and adventure. Where did that all go now? When did everything get so serious? It’s simple. At some point between that age of childhood and right now-- we lost it, because life has become a race to be responsible adults. I won’t argue that because how else can we cope with life if we can’t be responsible living it. But who says becoming a responsible adult means a long face and a boringly serious attitude toward life?
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True those tough times are upon us. The issues we all face are both serious and real. And in the world of reality, not everything is funny so most people would say. Are they saying then that we have no business laughing and enjoying life? And in the course of living a responsible life, we should sacrifice the ability to laugh and junk the gift of joy and look glum because we’re adults? I hope they don’t teach that in the classrooms or we will be having a planet of zombies.
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So how about we try it differently this time and put the smile back on our faces. It’s time to laugh again. Even the Lord loves a cheerful heart. Let’s take back what we have lost. See the world through childlike eyes with a mind always seeking new wonders and adventure, a heart always trusting and believing. Let’s learn to enjoy once more a beautiful sunrise, the innocence and laughter of our children, the myriad colors of a rainbow, the pleasures of our friendships, the fun of surprises, and the assuring warmth and love of our families. Let’s get back the ability to seek out the good and too pluck out the hidden pearls of joy sprinkled down the road of our life in this crazy world. Let us once more learn to delight in these simple pleasures and so make ourselves a lovely day each day of our lives from now on.
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So how about it? :-)




Wednesday, January 21, 2015

WHERE WILL YOU HAVE YOUR POWER LIE




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Lifted off the book - 'Good Morning... God" - (Pamela Steinke)
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UNHAPPINESS
Philippians 4:11
January 21
  "You must realize that no circumstances in life have the power to make you unhappy, it is only your attitude towards the circumstance, your failure to trust ME in that circumstance that causes unhappiness. Things or situations in themselves have no power over you. You are the one who chooses where the power lies --- whether it be in self, in circumstances, or in ME. Where will you have the power lie?"
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Where will you have the power lie?
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That's a good question, isn't it? .Many of us are so unhappy (C'mon. admit it) --- here in the silence of our souls or in the trappings of discontent that soaks up our being from top to bottom. And which many of us are not ready nor able to answer, particularly those who pride themselves to be self-contained, independent, or self-made. I have learned this that to see the answer one must lift one's gaze or shift one's focus or turn one's head away from the self. It's the 'I' 'Me' 'My' 'Mine' of things which clouds our view from seeing with clarity the answers to questions such as this.
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Let me tell you a story...
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Inday, not her real name, is my laundrywoman. She comes to the house for the weekly laundry schedule. She's a widow in her sixties, struggles to support her adopted child through school, and lives a stark simple life not very far from my place. Yet she can be so happy that she succeeds to rock the whole house with her laughter over the slightest joke she hears. In our chats, I hear no such words as ------- 'I'm so sad I could die' ... 'I'm choking to death with all of these problems' ... 'This phone sucks, I gotta buy a new one.' ... 'I have nothing to wear.' ... 'I have to have those shoes or my day is spoiled.' ... and all that stuff selfie lives are prone to engage in.
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What I hear instead are these ---
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'Sakit ng buto-buto ko pero okay lang. Kelangan ni apo mahatid sa eskuwelahan kaninang maaga.' -- 'Not feeling too well but it's okay. Took grandchild to school early this morning.'
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'Madami akong problema. Minsan di ko alam kung saan ako babaling. Pero andyan naman ang Diyos. Tutulong Siya. Siya na ang bahala.' -- 'I have tons of problems, sometimes I don't know where to turn to. But God is there, he'll help; he'll take care of things.'
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'Minsan nalulungkot din ako. Sana hindi ganito ang buhay ko. Pero kung iisipin ko, mas blessed pa ako sa iba. Kasi eto ako sisenta na at umaaray sa sakit ng mga buto-buto pero...... may konting trabaho, nakakakain ng tatlong beses sa isang araw, at nagigising pa rin sa umaga para sa panibagong sikap uli. Salamat sa Diyos!' -- 'I am lonely too. Wishing life wasn't like this for me. But I also think I am still blessed...... look at me at sixty with aching bones, yet have a little job to work at, with three meals a day, and still waking up to a new day every morning for a fresh new start to my life. Thank God!'
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Inday moved her gaze away from her personal pains and set it down on what a beautiful day and life can still be in the midst of it all. This was the source which brought the tiny glimmer to her weary eyes and laughter to her face. She stood ten-feet-tall in her wrinkled small frame as she displayed her trust and faith in the goodness of the Magnificent ONE.
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This was and is the same light and faith we saw in the faces of the crowd in the recent pastoral visit of Pope Francis in the country.
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So where will we have our power lie?
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Blessings, everyone. Seek your power in the Lord.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

THE CHILD JESSUS -- SHOWS US TO COME TO GOD LIKE A CHILD IN OUR INNOCENCE TRUST AND FAITH


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Today is the Feast of the Sto. Nino, the Child Jesus.
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A friend once had asked .... "why do you pray to the Sto. Nino?"
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Why not?!
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Allow me my thoughts, if you please......
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A child in its pure innocence is empty of guile (sly or cunning intelligence), of machinations (a scheming or crafty action or artful design intended to accomplish some usually evil end), or of selfish motive - the kind we as adults so often engage in.
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A child sees the world as it is......... people as they are....... and understand things in its stark simplicity and reason. He can easily see through masks, pretense, cover, make-believe, false designs. Good is good, bad is bad, and anything else in-between must have an explanation. (To this, parents must guide them in their enlightenment.)
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The Child Jesus looks up to his mother and father with absolute trust and faith. He sees and knows how they live their lives in the home and outside of it ----- he sees them both go through the cares and woes of their day to day lives ----- he sees both their laughter and their tears, their struggles and successes..... he watches them work with their hands in the many tasks of the day unmindful of the heaviness of the task or of the lateness of the hour ----- he is familiar with their hopes and dreams for him- their family-and their home ----- he watches at the many selfless sacrifices his parents do for his sake ----- he knows about a mother's heart..... bout a father's heart. He basks in that constant tender love, care, concern, and protection.
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So when he hears a tiny earnest prayer offered in faith and trust to him in the same areas of concern of human existence........ he nods his head and says ----- "I know. I understand." ---- And blessings follow way beyond measure. Because he understands.
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I should know; I have been blessed by the Holy Child far more than my weary heart can hold. He understands me more than I understand myself in my misery, disappointment, failed hopes and dreams. He helps me see life with fresh new eyes..... as from the eyes of a child... trusting, believing, rejoicing .... once more and happily.
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In the homily at mass today was read....
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Matthew 19:14 New International Version (NIV)
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14 Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
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I am a child in the presence of my Lord. I am a child in the presence of the Sto. Nino.
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May you all be blessed by the understanding heart of the Sto. Nino... way, way beyond measure.


Monday, January 5, 2015

RESOLUTIONS ANYONE??

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Friends keep asking me about my New Year's resolutions. I just give them a smile because honestly I don't do end-of-year-resolutions. Not that I don't believe in them but different folks, different strokes. Same story with my friend. She thinks resolutions are simply empty promises to self. And we do know about promises, don't we? That it's just meant to be broken. Maybe some of us are good at it but as far as I gather for some years now nobody has come out honest and clean. Somewhere there down the road the resolve goes stale.
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Maybe it's through no fault of anyone or anything.  I would rather think that it's the self which does more influence on making or breaking personal resolves. One may start up strong but further down the line ends up weak or shattered. There's always a story behind the reason why but don't let anyone say that you chalked up excuses to cover up for your failure. Own up to failure bravely managing with a sheepish grin if you can. Besides they never really expected you to follow through with it anyhow. Nobody believes in resolutions these days. It's just media hype.
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But...........
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How about we take on another approach to 'making resolutions'?  Be more real and straightforward about it. One that's manageable, within our control, and I think much more closest to our heart.
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DO THE THINGS THAT COUNT.

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Do the things which matter to you. Do those things which make you happy  (not those things which are influenced or dictated or imposed upon you by your peers)..... stuff which make you feel pleased with yourself  (boosting creativity so much more)..... build self-confidence  (you must be good at something - everybody is)..... further bond with your family with quality time  (work is just work; don't let it get in the way of creating wonderful moments with them)..... tasks which make you far better at your skills or talent (you're better at it but what's stopping you from being the best)..... engage in activities which enhance your social skills further  (we all stand connected)..... and many more things which you simply love doing.
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It's not a promise you make to yourself;  you do it because you love doing it. You cook fantastic dishes at home and even explore new recipes. You clean the car top to bottom and this time regularly because you love your car so much (and sometimes even more than you love your wife... ooops! Just kidding!) You buy ten burgers and ten bottles of water and then give it away to every street person you see (because you love the giving far more than the receiving end of it). You write letters to your congressmen or senators telling them what's wrong with your country (because you care what happens to your district or country -- and it looks like they don't).
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There's more that you do and can do. And the only thing that you should be careful about is........ choosing the right things. Things that genuinely matter are things that genuinely count.
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Resolutions, anyone?  Naahh.. I don't think so this time. I have this suspicion that you are just too busy doing the great wonderful things you love to even bother about resolutions. (Me, too.)
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Shine on, friends! This is your year. Blessings are there waiting for everyone ....  2015!!!  GOD BLESS YOU!



Saturday, January 3, 2015

GOD WHISPERS -- AND WE'RE NOT LISTENING




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Let's start the year knowing how wonderful God is. But of course you know that already. And yet don't we still struggle in efforts to draw closer to Him .. or bring Him into our mundane lives? It's like........ 'gosh, He is so huge, supreme and mighty what would He want with a small insignificant mortal like me' --- or 'He's so busy with zillions of people to look after' --- or 'I'm no saint nor a disciple and certainly He loves righteous people more; who am I compared to that??' --- and a lot more similar perceptions of God.

Yeah, I thought that way, too. Until I realized that holding on to
these wrong perceptions and beliefs kept me away and farther from HIM. Misery. My fault, not HIS.


So when I finally got my wake-up-call which straightened out my heart and mind, I began to see God for what HE is. Certainly is not out-of-reach nor beyond-reach but unbelievably as close as just a whisper away.

HE is whatever you want HIM to be in your life. HE is as near or far as your heart can see. HE is in a tear... a smile... or a sigh.


HE is .... a father, or even a mother, a brother or sister, healer, savior, provider, enabler, guide,teacher, career counselor, leader, lawyer, accountant, doctor, builder, ....... or your bff. Oh so many more as many as your needs are in life. HE is what you want HIM to be for your salvation, mercy, well-being, joy and happiness.

And all those roles HE takes on is simply because of HIS great love for HIS children ---- and that means us!

How hard is that to understand?!!

And do you know why some of us find it hard to connect with HIM? -- It's because we haven't learned much how to think less and less of us and think more and so much more of HIM. The truth is we live on this planet so that HE may increase and that we decrease. Life is all about HIM and not all about us, like it or not. We live on borrowed time ---- time which HE allowed us to have. One day everything must return to HIM.

Blessings, everyone; make God real in your life in 2015 .....and watch HIM pour out HIS choicest blessings upon you.


This too is my prayer for you. Be blessed and stay blessed.
HAPPY NEW YEAR 2015!



(Big thanks to Mr. Quote Man who sent me this beautiful video.)


Monday, December 29, 2014

HAPPY NEW YEAR 2015 - STRENGTH UNDEFEATABLE



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To quote....
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"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing. To keep our faces toward change and behave like free spirits in the presence of fate is strength undefeatable." ------ Helen Keller, Let Us Have Faith (1940)
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Unquote.
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It is that time of the year .. again .. when we reassess, reevaluate, review, or look back to the year that has passed. The highs and lows of it, its triumphs and failures, its joys and sadness, its successes and bloopers, its dare-do and dare-not, its friends and enemies, its good and its bad. Life!
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There may be things in there which we would like to change ....and then again some which we may hang onto quite stubbornly, whether it be good or bad. And then again some who believe that life is just what it is, that it can't be changed.
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Well, whatever your belief is.... life is what you make it, good or bad. Nobody can tell you what to do with it; nobody has the right to. You are your own author... you write your own story.
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You can make it an adventure.... or an endless chain of excitement.... or an endless round of merriment.... or a pocketful of challenges.... or buckets-full of tears.... or a hopelessly boring one........ The choices are all up to you.
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Savor the triumphs achieved but please don't try to heap blame on things, circumstances, and people when life suddenly turns sour. Because life is all about choices. Even in bad situations you still have a choice. Stand up to the choices you have made and make.
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Life is what you make it.
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Let's look forward to the best year 2015 can be
for us all.

  HAPPY  NEW YEAR!!! 
 Be blessed. Stay blessed.
Love you all. 
 Thank you for being with me through all the writing.
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Sunday, December 28, 2014

ONE LOVE THROUGH THE YEARS

This beautiful song is usually played in weddings, anniversaries, and other special days carved out with love by earthly lives.

This song is my special song for the only love of my life. Thank you, GOD, for being there through the good and bad and everything in-between with your magnificent love and care.................. through the years and forevermore.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

MY ONLY LOVE THROUGH THE YEARS





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This beautiful song is usually played in weddings, anniversaries, and other special days carved out with love by earthly lives.



This song is my special song for the only love of my life.
Thank you, GOD, for being there through the good and bad and everything in-between with your magnificent love and care.................. through the years and forevermore.




NOTE:
Had to repost this because the link in this one faltered frequently.
Thank you for bearing with me. I just had to have this song here... it's a special one for me.