Category Archives: teenagers

Nostalgia and a Longing for Simpler Days…

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Dear Friends,

My oldest son, Jeremiah is having some intense emotional struggle right now that I am not even up for writing about.  If you wouldn’t mind, I sure would like to humbly ask that you pray for him; he is 16.

 

Tonight I was going to leave a video on the wall of his Facebook to cheer my boy up and inspire him.  This song always made me giggle and I simply love the message.  Add to that, I’ve been over the moon for Frank Sinatra for as long as I can remember.  I love his music.  Of course, I love old-school music in general.  My favorites include Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Louis Armstrong, and Nat King Cole, just to name a few.

 

I’d like you to view the following video and note how it somehow lifts your spirits, regardless of what kind of mood you’re in:

 

 

Now, riddle me this, Batman? How can one be in a depressed or anxious state of mind and hear this song without smiling and feeling just a little bit better than you did before you heard it? And how profound is the message of this song?

 

This snappy, upbeat tune was introduced in the movie, “A Hole in the Head” starring the late, great Frank Sinatra, circa 1959! We are talking about 54 years ago!  One must reflect on the simplicity of the world during those times; which were inarguably just not that long ago.

 

I grieve for my beloved America, as we seem to be given over to abundant chaos and such confusingly busy lifestyles that we, much more often times than not, miss out on the simple things in life; the most important and the most eternal things.

 

 Unmanageable stress is literally subtracting years from our lives.  MOST importantly, our children, many living in low-income, single-parent homes are confused and brokenhearted to say the very least.

 

Once upon a time we yearned for scientific progress, which to me, simply equated to us having access to more luxurious “things” and “things” that we thought would make our lives more convenient and somehow more valuable. Well, that certainly has worked out well for us, hasn’t it?

Oh, how I really do miss the old days.  I miss the old console TV sets that had rabbit ears and only a few channels; the ones you had to get out of your seat and turn the dial until you found a program you wanted to watch or could get reception on.  I miss my Disco 8-track tapes, and my cardboard box of a portable record player that played 45’s  and LP’s (33’s). 

 

 

 I miss playing outside, getting dirty, drinking from the water house, peeing on the side of the house so you didn’t have to go in your house and take a chance of getting hounded by your folks about something, and  I sure did enjoy catching crawdads in the creek behind my house.  I miss those things and so much more.

 

More than anything, I miss the family time we all shared day in and day out.  I miss those sit-down, delicious, gravy-invested dinners we shared as a family “at the kitchen table.”  I miss waking up early every Sunday morning to the smell of my grandmother’s cookin’, which literally made me jump right of bed; I was somehow seduced by the aroma of breakfast. 

 

We did the same things every Sunday.  We had our yummy, Southern breakfast, got dressed nicely, hopped in the car, and went to Sunday School “and” church.  I never tried to negotiate with my grandmother about going to church nor did I ever complain and tell her I was too tired to go.  It was part of our established routine.  It’s just what we did.  And after church my grandmother either “fixed” an extravagant lunch or we went to eat at Furr’s Cafeteria.  Mind you, retail stores and most businesses were closed on Sundays then.  Today, Chick-Fil-A is the only business that I can honestly think of that unapologetically closes on Sundays because of the corporations unshakable faith, values, and public desire to please God.

 

Yes, I miss those simpler days.  Praise God, I have so many memories to cherish.  I’m thankful for these beautiful memories and for my Godly upbringing! What about you? 

 

Do you think that as we move closer and closer to end times that the world is becoming increasing dark, chaotic, and depraved or is this all in my head?  I’d love to hear your feedback and opinions (that’s my polite way of telling you that you’d better chime in! lol!)

All my love,

Ava

drinking from the hose

kid peeing outside

tire swing

catching crawdaddies

dirty kids

mud pies

ice cream truck

sprinkler

family prayer

big wheel

Does Masturbation Reduce the Risk of Testicular Cancer?

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The answer to this question varies, depending on who you ask.  I am certainly not a medical doctor, but my vote would be that there is no correlation between amount of time spent masturbating and testicular cancer.  However, if you were to ask my oldest son, Jeremiah, you might get a different spin on the issue.

Recently, I was horrified when my younger sister, Vivian, mother to my twelve-year old nephew, Gabriel came to me with concerns about some advice that Jeremiah had given to a very impressionable young Gabe.  As Vivian reports it, the conversation went a little something like this:

Gabriel: (concerned) “As I’m getting older “things” are starting to uncontrollably “pop up” on me when I least expect it.  It’s really embarrassing and I’m not sure what to do about it.”

Jeremiah: (equally concerned) “If you don’t masturbate every day you will get ball cancer.”

In the words of my late mother, “Now I know why some animals eat their young at birth.”  Sufficed to say, I was humiliated and was for once, utterly speechless. 

The irony of the situation is that earlier in my conversation with my sister, I was telling her how both boys could be such a good influence on one another.  My son, Jeremiah has certainly veered from the straight and narrow path as of late, and I suppose I was subconsciously trying to salvage my sister’s opinion of him.  

Vivian is an  amazing person.   She is also a single mother, although that’s about to change as she is about to be married late this summer.  She is most likely a Republican as she is one of the most conservative people that I know (giggle).  She has worked and sacrificed intensely to provide my nephew with a very quality, yet sheltered lifestyle.  To my knowledge, he is still unable to play games that are not rated E.  However, I have witnessed the fruits of her labor, as Gabe has turned out to be an  incredible young man.  Sufficed to say, you won’t hear me poking fun (anymore) at my incessantly overprotective sibling. 

Sometimes I often find myself comparing me to her.  She is quite possibly the most self-disciplined, organized, hard-working, balanced person that I know (quite the opposite of me).  But how much does she really know about “ball cancer”?  In doing some research on the topic of Jeremiah and Gabriel’s conversation I found the following article from the BBC:

BBC NEWS
Masturbation ‘cuts cancer risk’
Men could reduce their risk of developing prostate cancer through regular masturbation, researchers suggest.They say cancer-causing chemicals could build up in the prostate if men do not ejaculate regularly.

And they say sexual intercourse may not have the same protective effect because of the possibility of contracting a sexually transmitted infection, which could increase men’s cancer risk.

Australian researchers questioned over 1,000 men who had developed prostate cancer and 1,250 who had not about their sexual habits.

This is a plausible theory 
Dr Chris Hiley, Prostate Cancer Charity
They found those who had ejaculated the most between the ages of 20 and 50 were the least likely to develop the cancer.The protective effect was greatest while the men were in their 20s.Men who ejaculated more than five times a week were a third less likely to develop prostate cancer later in life.FluidPrevious research has suggested that a high number of sexual partners or a high level of sexual activity increased a man’s risk of developing prostate cancer by up to 40%.But the Australian researchers who carried out this study suggest the early work missed the protective effect of ejaculation because it focussed on sexual intercourse, with its associated risk of STIs.

Graham Giles, of the Cancer Council Victoria in Melbourne, who led the research team, told New Scientist: “Had we been able to remove ejaculations associated with sexual intercourse, there should have been an even stronger protective effect of ejaculations.”

The researchers suggest that ejaculating may prevent carcinogens accumulating in the prostate gland.

The prostate provides a fluid into semen during ejaculation that activates sperm and prevents them sticking together.

The fluid has high concentrations of substances including potassium, zinc, fructose and citric acid, which are drawn from the bloodstream.

But animal studies have shown carcinogens such as 3-methylchloranthrene, found in cigarette smoke, are also concentrated in the prostate.

‘Flushing out’

Dr Giles said fewer ejaculations may mean the carcinogens build up.

“It’s a prostatic stagnation hypothesis. The more you flush the ducts out, the less there is to hang around and damage the cells that line them.”

A similar connection has been found between breast cancer and breastfeeding, where lactating appeared to “flush out” carcinogens, reduce a woman’s risk of the disease, New Scientist reports.

Another theory put forward by the researchers is that ejaculation may induce prostate glands to mature fully, making them less susceptible to carcinogens.

Dr Chris Hiley, head of policy and research at the UK’s Prostate Cancer Charity, told BBC News Online: “This is a plausible theory.”

She added: “In the same way the human papillomavirus has been linked to cervical cancer, there is a suggestion that bits of prostate cancer may be related to a sexually transmitted infection earlier in life.”

Anthony Smith, deputy director of the Australian Research Centre in Sex, Health and Society at La Trobe University in Melbourne, said the research could affect the kind of lifestyle advice doctors give to patients.

“Masturbation is part of people’s sexual repertoire.

“If these findings hold up, then it’s perfectly reasonable that men should be encouraged to masturbate,” he said.

Story from BBC NEWS:
http://news.bbc.co.uk/go/pr/fr/-/2/hi/health/3072021.stmPublished: 2003/07/16 23:11:15 GMT

I realize that not everything that we read is the Gospel and that reporters have a way of spinning things to support their own points of views.  Nonetheless, could my wayward child be on to something?  Possibly so, my friend.  Possibly so.  However whether he is wrong or right, I had better not catch him “reducing his risk of ball cancer” when I’m at home.  Gag!  I pray that his preventative efforts be unknown to me…and you can guarantee that as of today I am going to quit hassling him about locking his bedroom door!