Modern Handmade Child

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Points2Ponder By Alan P. Scaglione

“Our First Christmas Craft Corner with the Grandkids
Here’s a challenge to all you grandparents out there…The gauntlet has been thrown down..Let’s see what you can come up with this holiday season!
Nana and Nano had our very first Christmas Crafts Corner(CCC) with our grandchildren Mykai(mick-kye), who is 6, Macie, who is 4, and Jett, who is 2.
We used the glue to put their name on a stocking and then let them use the glitter on the glue and Voila! They were ecstatic with their creation.
The fact that the glitter made its way onto our faces, into our hair and on EVERYTHING was something we did NOT plan for.
Then we taught them how to make reindeer out of clothespins—after Nano spray painted the clothespins brown, to look like reindeer-- of course!
If I hadn’t painted them, the clothespin could never pass themselves off like a “real” reindeer! Oh the things we persuade ourselves to do!
Nana helped glue the crazy eyes on each reindeer; Nano helped with the folding and cutting of the pipe cleaners that we used for antlers.
I let them choose which color they wanted their antlers to be.
Jett pipes up “Yellow-Yellow- YELLOW!”
Yellow it was—who was I fooling? Even the kids knew…these were clothespins, not Rudolph and his Rowdy Reindeer Roundup!
But we did use the end of a Q-tip glued on as the nose…and they each painted the end of the “nose” with a red marker—it could have been Rudolph’s twin!
We put magnets on the back and a Christmas picture of each of them, held by the reindeer’s mouth(remember—it’s a clothespin!) as gifts for their parents!
And then…to finish out the CCC, we decorated 3 dimensional Christmas trees. They had the two wooden pieces you intersect in the middle so it stands on its own--
And looks just like a tree! Again, Nano had pre-painted all of the trees so they were Christmas Green. Each tree had holes in the limbs so…we hung tiny ornaments.
That was after we used glitter paint to make the trees look like they had snow on each limb.
In retrospect—probably should have stopped there—the trees looked traditionally nice.
But NOOO! Nano had to pull out the Penguin and Santa stickers—those trees were never gonna look “traditional” anything ever again!
 Those kids had a field day with those stickers!

The kids were laughing and playing while Nana and Nano helped them with the crafts. We were improvising as we went along…and no one cared.
We were just having fun at our First Annual Christmas Craft Corner!
Special shout out to our daughter Amanda, Mykai and Macie’s mom. It really pays to have a kindergarten teacher in the family—cool heads prevailed!

POINTS2PONDER  Isn’t it amazing when you can see the wheels in their brain moving and suddenly…the figure it out! All on their own!
We were wrapping up our time with the kids.
Nana surprised them with candy canes—they all opened them and started licking the candy canes—red tongues on glitter laced faces—priceless!
Not to be outdone—Nano reaches into his pocket and pulls out dollar bills.
You have to know…my father passed out quarters to his grandkids —that’s just not gonna cut it with the Millennium Ipod/Ipad kids of today!
Nope! Nano was passing out dollars!
I gave Jett a dollar—he put it in his pocket.
I gave Macie a dollar—she put it in her purse...and gave me a big hug!
I gave Mykai a dollar—he paused, looked up at me and said, “You know Nano, you should really give me $6, Macie $4 and Jett $2—to match our age!”
And there it was—my 6 year old grandson had put the two together: forget the candy canes--Nano gives out MONEY!
I chuckled and said something he won’t understand until he’s a teenager…
“Nice Try, Mykai!”

Sunday, November 27, 2011

I'm Just Sayin by Alan P. Scaglione

“ChristmasTime is Here—Peace on Earth, Good Will toward Men!”

  I’m Just Sayin’”
                                                                 by Alan P. Scaglione
3 – 2 – 1 ! And we’re off!
Christmas Season has officially begun!
At least, that’s what they said at Wal-Mart at 10 PM Thanksgiving Night!
YES Virginia…We were at the Black Friday shopping spree…which, coincidentally, started on Thanksgiving Night this year!
What they will do…just to jumpstart this economy!
But, I have to say…they were out in droves!

I like to go to observe…People are funny! Left to their own devices, you’d be amazed what people will do!
Bella decided that, although the “official” shopping didn’t start until 10pm, she would go an hour earlier…just to scope out the competition.
Competition NOT being Target or Sears…THIS competition was…the OTHER shoppers!
YEP—my normally sweet and genteel, southern sweetheart was on Commando Duty…and she was not taking prisoners!
I walked with her through the store, but at some point I whispered my usual into her ear “you have your cell on, right?”
She smiled, nodded and…off she went in one direction, and off I went in another.
I love to just watch and listen.
In years past, I have observed the worst in people: two seemingly nice moms fighting over the last Tickle Me Elmo—no one was laughing that night!
But this year, I saw crowds gathered around the 42” TVs waiting until 10pm to go on sale; the crowd was laughing, joking, talking about Christmas!
And there’s always a “ME” in the crowd—this guy was leading the group in Christmas Carols. In the middle of Wal-Mart! Deck the Halls! FaLaLaLaLa!

I say “ME” because—I am that guy…the one who stands at the entrance of Wal-Mart, not an employee, but..Wishing everyone a Merry Christmas!
YES—I do say “Merry Christmas” – no disrespect to those who do NOT celebrate Christmas, but…this is OUR Holiday,WE Christians in OUR Christian Country called America—I will not be apologizing to anyone for celebrating CHRIST in Christmas and I don’t call it Xmas..Keep Christ in Christmas!
Just in case you wondered how I felt about that…now you know! LOL!

I just love this time of year—I start counting from Labor Day until we get through the gratefulness of Thanksgiving so we can Celebrate Christmas!
I just think, for the most part, people are a little nicer to each other at Christmas time…even in a checkout line that is 100 people long.
I saw someone offer a single mom, who brought her 3 kids, one a toddler, with her(and the toddler was screaming), to go ahead of them.
Wait a minute??? Maybe they were just getting that screaming kid out of the store? Hmmm…maybe there was method to their madness!
That could be why people clapped! LOL!
But I also saw…an employee slip off of a display, headed for a fall, and a grandma caught the employee. I saw that! And the employee was so surprised by the magnanimous gesture that he let the grandma take her item 30 minutes early! See??? Wasn’t that nice of both of them?
I ended my night, sitting at the exit of the store, watching people leave together… they had all “helped the economy” a whole lot, but they were still laughing, smiling and letting someone go ahead of them. Some asked if they could help the other to their car…so they could have their cart! Any other time, you would be suspect why someone was walking you to your car “with” your 5 bikes you just bought—it was for your cart, silly!

Regardless, of the reason…BE ONE OF THOSE PEOPLE—the NICE ones, the ones who treat each other with kindness, smiling and greeting and wishing each other a Merry CHRISTmas!
And through it all, I was singing “Hark the Herald, Angels Sing, Glory to the newborn King! Peace on earth and mercy mild, God and Sinners reconciled!”
The Scripture says in Luke 2:13-14:
 And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.”
Let’s spread some Peace…His Peace…that passes all understanding—that’s really all this world needs!

Until Next Time
I’m Just Sayin’…
Brother “A”

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Points2Ponder By Alan P. Scaglione

“Alan and his daughter Ashley—Together thru the Years!”

Just when you think???
They forgot their promise…
To call you back…
You know-- the one they made a week ago?
The phone rings, and the words are said “Hey, I was calling you back…wassup?”
And you bite your lip so you don’t say, “you really took a week to get back with me?”
No…you can’t do that…
You just have to be grateful that they remembered that they promised to call.
And they actually did!

And the conversation unfolds. You catch up on work, activities, weekend jaunts, life in general.
And you don’t even realize that 43 minutes have gone by…just lost in the moment, you and your now grown up 29 year old daughter.
And she tells you she loves you as she hangs up.
Just when you think…they go and surprise you!

POINTS2PONDER  Why does it seem like… they get so busy that…they forgot about us along the way! When’s the last time…they called, just because!”

Anybody watch the show “Golden Girls” back in the day? You remember…Blanche, Rose, Dorothy and…my favorite…SOPHIA! I loved her sarcasm!
My daughter and I watched it while she was growing up. On Saturday nights. It was family time together. We laughed out loud before it was LOL!
She then called me from college at 11pm some nights and asked, “You watching Golden Girls? I remember this episode! Wait…remember what Sophia says?”
And we would laugh as we watched from two separate homes, one in Florida, one in Tennessee, one at our house, one at her dorm. But, we shared the moment.
My favorite episode was…Mother’s Day!
Anyone remember???…the old ladies wanted to go to dinner, but...they had to wait for “the call!”
You know--”the call” from their kids.
And each of them reminisced as they waited about those younger years, when the kids were all at home, tucked in bed, and they would check on them.
At night, just to make sure they were in bed, sleeping…and safe and sound.
But now, they hoped, they wished, they waited…believing, at some point, “they” would call.
I remember thinking “I won’t ever have to wait for a call—of course, I will be their 1st priority!”
Hey? I was young, what did I know?
So…now I do know…sometimes, just when you think…they forgot…
They didn’t forget…they just suddenly remembered…that they promised to call.

For all the parents and grandparents who may be waiting for a call for Thanksgiving.
Reminiscing about Thanksgivings past and all those wonderful family time memories of those past Thanksgivings.
They were your traditions, your moments shared:
Maybe you all watched the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade while the turkey cooked in the oven?
Maybe it was the yearly family football game after dinner?
Maybe it was the kids helping in the kitchen while you shared those passed down family recipes.
Or just laughing your head off when you saw Grandpa snoring in the rocking chair, his belt unbuckled, shirt button popped open from eating too much!
Yes we all have those memories—whatever they were, they were ours, and we made them together as a family.
And now, they may be off making their “own” family memories and starting their “own” family traditions.
That’s exactly how it should be.
But just like the Golden Girls… hang around for a while…don’t be in a hurry…
Give them time…you may not be the First thing on their list anymore, but…at least you’re still on their list…and that’s all that matters!
Just when you think???
Phone rings!
Just another thing to be grateful for!

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Tasty Tuesday - Pumpkin Babies


From my dear friend Mary Behling :)































Sunday, November 20, 2011

"I'm Just Sayin"" by Alan P. Scaglione

“Happy Thanksgiving—With A Grateful Heart!”

“I’m Just Sayin’”

by Alan P. Scaglione

This the time of year when our nation pauses…to give thanks!

It’s one of the few holidays everyone can agree on...

Everyone has something to be thankful for!

Let’s not get overwhelmed by the chaotic planning that sometimes overtakes this “family” holiday with planning, cooking and refereeing!

For this week, set aside the worries and angst of an uncertain future and allow yourself to…have an attitude of gratitude!

We really do have so much more than we take the time to appreciate!

I have been pondering this whole week, counting my blessings if you will, over what I am thankful for.

Here’s what I came up with:

As a nation…for our soldiers, past and present, who stand watch on foreign and native soil, protecting our freedom.

As a human being, for the ability to see the victories and successes come out of so many natural disasters this year.

As a husband, that I am loved by a wife I don’t deserve but continues to love and adore me, in spite of my obvious flaws.

As a father, for the health of our children…none of them with physical or emotional disabilities, all of them able to sustain their families.

As a grandfather, for the joy that my grandchildren bring me, from laughter to tears, as I watch them grow and discover this world for themselves!

As a brother, that I still have my two brothers with me, on this earth, and we share a brotherly bond that knows, if needed, we are there!

As a cousin, that I have my extended family in my life, more like brothers and sisters than distant cousins, and we connect as friends who are family.

As a friend, for the old friends whom I have reconnected with and for the old friends that have always been with me—so honored to call them friend.

As a son, to have had two parents who I know loved me, each in their own way, and are now in heaven waiting for our reunion someday.

As a Christian, knowing that my faith has endured through so much and grown stronger because…I know whom I have believed and know He’s able!

So…before you gather around your family dinner table this Thanksgiving, take a moment, allow yourself to ask the question…

Who are you thankful for?

My best friend Ellen Bullard used to say “the most important things in life…are not things at all, but the people we love and share our life with!”

So remember…

Even if there has been physical pain this year…you are alive and as long as we have life, we can share it with those we love.

Even if there has been emotional distress…you can remind yourself that no matter what you have faced, you did just that—you faced it head on!

Even if there has been employment upheaval this year…you have people who love you and will see you through this rough patch!

We as a nation, as a family, as a human…have so much to be thankful for. We need to remind ourselves of all that we have… and appreciate!

I have been singing this song all week long:

“Give thanks with a grateful heart, give thanks to the Holy one, give thanks because He’s given Jesus Christ, His Son!”

We are a Christian Nation, founded on Christian beliefs—and above all that we are thankful for…we give thanks for a Savior!

I want to pause and share this scripture with you…may it resonate in your heart and remind you …

Give thanks with a grateful heart!

Psalm 100

1Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.

2Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

3Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

4Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

5For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

So this Thanksgiving, while you circle around your family table and listen to each member share what they are so thankful for…

Be thankful that you are at that table and not the couple who will be alone, wishing they had their family… around their table.

Just be grateful!

Until Next Time

I’m Just Sayin’…

Brother “A”

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Points2Ponder by Alan P. Scaglione

“If it were my boys-- What can I expect of you?”


WARNING! This author is stepping onto his “SoapBox” to discuss a recent news topic. His views are his views alone—unfortunately! (This is an add in by Suzann (GrannyZann) these are MY views as well!)

Here it goes!

Anybody out there hear about this scandal at PennState? You know the one…

The one involving a guy who has used his position in the football staff and his charitable foundation to molest young boys!

Yep! That one!

I have been listening to the news about this, and with each newscast or tickertape crawl on the bottom of my TV screen, my moral indignation just goes through the roof!

Hearing people discuss the pros and cons, the excuses and explanations, the pleas and testimonials, of Joe Paterno.

I think if I hear another person say “He did great things, so he can’t be a bad person. He just made an error in judgment, haven’t we all?”

And to that, I respond “NO we haven’t! Not when it meant letting a crime against a child go unreported to the police! NO!! WE ALL HAVE NOT!”

This is just a snapshot of the moral cancer that has eaten away at our society!

We love the good that comes with the guy, so…we will look the other way when it comes to the bad.

I call it “situational ethics”…our ethics depends on the situation!

I raised my kids with the following edict:

Wrong is Wrong if everyone’s doing it


Right is Right is no one is doing it!

We cannot let anyone hide behind the “Legal Least” that is required

Instead of holding them to the “Moral Most” that is expected of human beings—

And we ask the question—what if he walked into that shower and saw his grandson being molested? Would he have stopped short of calling the police?

The bottom line—no matter all the good you have done, looking the other way when you should have spoken up—can’t make up for that!

POINTS2PONDER Why has our nation come to value our sports figures as “gods who cannot do wrong or whose wrong is ignored or forgiven” instead of holding them to the same level of moral decency we would hold our family and friends to? Why do we excuse the inexcusable behavior of a person just because…they entertain us?

I have to admit…I hold them all accountable!

From the guy who walked into the situation and went home that night, called his dad to discuss and then… called Joe Paterno the next morning to let him know what he had observed—never calling the police—ever!! (Why didn’t his DAD tell him to call the Police???)

To the “greatest coach of all time” Joe Paterno. Not sure being greatest coach was worth the price of his moral standard.

He says “I coulda done more!” – yes! A lot more!

Throughout all of this—I have thought of my son and our four grandsons! What would I expect someone to do if it were my boys?

You know what we’d expect US to do…so, why don’t we expect it out of these men?

I can tell you because I know…you don’t have a “moment of silence” on the field—you lead a loud roaring protest to break the 10 years of silence!

And you may be wondering…talk is cheap; you never know until you’ve been placed in that situation; flee or fight!

Well, I can tell you—I did NOT flee!

Sometimes, you just have to say “I don’t care who is doing it—it’s WRONG!!”

Our America used to have a standard of decency that was more important than our standard of living!

Our heroes should not come with Warning Labels: Warning—“This Life does not represent suitable for duplication!”

A Hero is someone you want to emulate and admire.

Morals should always take priority over Money!

Even if it means… losing a scholarship, a Top 10 Standing… even a football game!

Ever hear “All that is necessary for evil to continue is for good men to stand by and do nothing!”

Hold your Heroes to the Same Standard your Hold Yourself—No Exceptions, No Excuses!

Enough SAID!!!

***Additional add in by Suzann (GrannyZann) -there will never be enough said when it comes to protecting a child. There is NEVER an excuse, reason, or what ever else you may want to call it to NOT protect a child and NOT do the right thing. Make sure YOU are not one of THOSE people that turn a blind eye.****

Sunday, November 13, 2011

I'm just Sayin by Alan P. Scaglione

“Wherever 2 or 3 are gathered in HIS name...”

“I’m Just Sayin’”

by Alan P. Scaglione

Crisis suddenly hits your life or someone you love.

Who do you call to pray?

Who are those people whose prayers you trust?

Who do you know to be a prayer warrior?

What makes them your prayer warrior?

We all know…we can pray to the Father ourselves;

But we also know…whom to call to pray for us and ours!

Back in the old days, man—I feel old just saying that!

But…we had that circle at our church, in our family, in our friendships…

That would gather at your house or meet you at your church…and pray!

In the millennium—things are a little different!

The use of media, all forms available, has connected prayer warriors across the internet, across cell towers, across the world!

For example…

I got a call from my dear friend this week while I was driving to work. She started the call with, “I am asking you to be my prayer partner and agree in prayer for my sister who is going into surgery at 10:30 am. We need God to do a healing, and I know you believe in healing and…you have been healed, so…I knew you were the one I wanted to agree with me in prayer!”

I responded with, “I will be praying with you and…I will get my prayer warriors praying for her too! Text me and let me how she does!”

I then, while walking into work, sent off a text message to my prayer warriors, the ones I go to when I need someone to agree with me in prayer!

They responded, via text, immediately “Praying for her. Will agree together at 10:30 am for God’s hand to be on her and the surgeon! Text us when you hear anything!”

Awww!!! The Prayer Circle has gone Millennium—and I love it!

The Word says, “For where two or three are gathered together in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:20)

I know…we all have this vision of 2 or 3 people gathered in a circle, in a home or at an altar, but…the Word doesn’t say that!

So…maybe we gather in one accord, agree in prayer, lift up a need…across Facebook? Or an email? Or text?

As long as we are all in one accord, praying to our Savior for His divine intervention…

We are taking what the enemy may mean for evil…and using it for HIS good!

I have a large circle, 80 people, on Facebook in a subgroup I call “Christian Friends”. Some of these people I have never met. Some of them, I have not physically seen in a number of years….all of these people are Christians who have agreed to be part of this facebook prayer chain, across the nation, across the world….praying for one another’s needs as soon as they are made known…and I think that is a GREAT thing!

I can promise you—FB’s Mark Zuckerburg NEVER envisioned his college dating rating system EVER becoming an international prayer chain!

But…maybe??? God did!

So…it may not be conventional…it may not be traditional… but wherever two or three are gathered in HIS name…HE promised to be in the middle!

And I can promise you…the ONLY one who can answer our prayer petitions is…That Man in the Middle!

It’s an honor to be on somebody’s “shortlist” – the list they call when crisis arises, and they need their Prayer Warriors praying!

It’s more of a humble responsibility to do exactly what is expected of us by the one who called and the one we are calling!!!

Anybody remember that old gospel hymn “Jesus on the Mainline—tell Him what you want! Call Him up, Call Him up, tell Him what you want!”

Life is precious—handle it with PRAYER!

Why not…pray for your prayer warrior right now!

Until Next Time

I’m Just Sayin’…

Brother “A”

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Points2Ponder by Alan P. Scaglione

“Sometimes, a dog can teach US new tricks!”

Why do people dress up their dogs?
You see the picture?
I actually saw these dogs, in their stroller!
Funny thing was—they were struttin' their stuff!
These dogs loved the attention!
The dog with the boots on, jumped out and danced on its back paws!
The dog with the sunglasses?
She posed for the picture!
Yes, you read that right—the owner said, “Sasha, pose for the picture!”
And the dog turned her head and looked right into my camera!
Would not have believed it unless I saw it with my own eyes!
But, as you can tell—I did, and… I took the picture to prove it!
Not one bit of embarrassment; not one moment of uncomfortable!
These two knew they were stopping the crowd, and that’s exactly what they wanted!
Oh by the way—the owners were enjoying the celebrity status also—they were posing for pictures with AND without the dogs!
Made me wonder?

POINTS2PONDER Why do some people just seize the moment, draw the attention, smile for the cameras, while others just shy away and fade into the crowd? Why is it some people create attention, crave the limelight, always prepared for “all eyes on me!” Why do some shake their head in embarrassment while others “strut their stuff?”

I have to admit…I am more of a strutter than a hider!
I always have been.
Whether it’s being one of the volunteers in Universal’s Indiana Jones presentation that refused to die when shot…the crowd began screaming DIE! DIE! DIE!
You can ask my brothers about that one!

Or maybe the guy who picks up the microphone while waiting to go into Disney’s Haunted Mansion at Christmas and leads the crowd in We Wish you a Merry Christmas!
The attendant was not amused but the crowd—they loved it and asked me to lead in Santa Claus Is Coming to Town!
Ask my daughter about that one!

Or how about high school graduation commencement? Falling flat on your face right in front of the principal’s feet, counting to 10 and getting up and bowing!
The whole graduating class gave me a standing ovation; my teacher gave me an “F” in conduct! Ruined my Principal’s Honor Roll, but… I had no regrets!
Ask a “few” of my readers about that one—they remember it well!

And I loved each and every memory made!

I understand how so many people have said “How Can you do that?” I would be so embarrassed!
I just think, “How can you NOT do it? It’s standing there just begging you to “strut your stuff!”

It all comes down to…
We have the participants and the sideliners!
Those “in the crowd” and then “leader of the crowd”.
Which one are you?

And…if you are a “sideliner” or an “in the crowd” person…
Ever secretly want to…just one time…
Strike up the chorus and Lead the Band!

Aww come on!

I dare ya! It is soooo much fun!

Surprise your family – Surprise YOURSELF!
If a dog can do it, with fashion and a sense of style—
Why not “strut your stuff?”
You just might inspire someone to follow your lead!

Remember… IF you get to the end of this wonderful thing God gave us called life…
And have a list of regrets – that is NOT what He intended.
It’s a gift to be used, enjoyed, experienced, shared!

And when you do…
Look right into that camera!
I can promise you—someone’s gonna take your picture!