JollyRollie's Blog

Thursday, December 28, 2006

New year greetings!

Once when I wished a happy birthday to a friend, my friend replied: I don’t pay much attention to it. It’s just another day!” I said no more about it to my friend, but I really don’t agree with that point of view. I think it’s good for us, as individuals and as a society, to observe special days in the year. A birthday or new year’s day or any other special occasion we observe, offers us an opportunity to reflect back and look forward. In some cases, it allows us to celebrate; although new year’s eve for me is a good time to be home enjoying family. I have no problem with celebrations; in fact, I love to get together with friends. I just find that ringing in the new year with a group of strangers, some of whom are not quite coherent, is not for me. Besides the new year, our Easter, Christmas and national celebrations are important. Each of them offers us a unique opportunity to celebrate and reflect; either alone, or with a group.

No matter how you celebrate it, or if you just leave it alone, I wish you a happy healthy new year. May we find a just and lasting peace in 2007!

Friday, December 15, 2006

Christmas Message:

Merry Christmas to our family and friends!

Imagine being able to travel back in time to that night of nights when Jesus was born! Imagine kneeling beside His crib for a few moments just to talk with Him; then, stopping to speak with His dear mother and St. Joseph. It would be so emotional; but I hope I would reflect back on the blessings we received from Jesus and His Father, especially during this past year. There was the birth of our seventh grandchild, Ryan Hudson Paltzer, born to Jean and John on May 25. I would thank Jesus for the times we visited with our children and grandchildren. These memories were among our greatest joys this year.

We said our farewell to Shirley’s mother Hazel who went to her heavenly home on November 14. I would ask Jesus to find a very special place for Hazel in heaven. During her ninety-two year life, Hazel touched many lives in a very special way.

We were given ample work to do, leisure time to enjoy, and good health to appreciate them both. I would ask Jesus to bring our poor world peace, and to bring our troops home safely. Finally, I would ask Him to bless you who are reading this message. May you enjoy the peace only the Prince of Peace can bring, this Christmas season and during the year to come!

Thanks for taking this imaginary trip with me. I am truly grateful to those who have taken the time to read this blog on a regular basis. It is my hope that in 2007, my entries will be of higher quality and more frequent.

Friday, December 01, 2006

More About Japan:

After my trip to Japan, I had a new appreciation for those who travel frequently outside the United States. When I returned home, it really did take me a while to return to the Chicago time zone. I learned a lot while in Japan, but I was most impressed with the people. One must remember that the people we met were, for the most part, hand picked; therefore, it may not be completely representative of the nation as a whole. Those we met seemed most concerned about detail. They were so anxious to show us the best parts of their country. To me, this is so understandable.

The most meaningful night for me was when we visited a resort. There was a group of young artists visiting the resort. They were in training to become artists for Yamaha. We from America had the honor of playing for them. Each of us played a selection. Before I played, I could only say, “Good evening!” in their language. When I finished, the reception they gave me was so warm. I felt that music had bonded us without any words being spoken. I’m sure my companions felt the same way. Though our world is filled with problems, I’m encouraged due to this experience. I wish each of you could have the experience of working and visiting with these interesting people.