Category Archives: Writing

What are the Odds of 11-12-13? A “Guest” post by Nisti K Delgroothe

The  other day, my friend informed me that 11/12/2013 was a few days away. Honestly, I hadn’t thought about the date until then, but when she told me I wanted to do something memorable. I instantly said, ‘Hey! Wouldn’t it be cool if I finished my memoir?’ We agreed it would!  But, being a realist I accepted the truth and told my friend that finishing it was an improbability. Now that I think about it, we discussed this all while finishing the photo for the memoir’s cover! Backwards?!

Anyway, this morning I woke up, checked the time and noticed the date. I then began to wonder: What are the odds? I began a quick Google search, but didn’t quickly find the answer and decided it might be more fun to play with the odds than to record them. So, here I go with the flow: 11-12-13…14!

14? Yes!

I have no idea what the odds are of 11-12-13 occurring on our calendar, but I do know it is a rare occasion in the 21st century. These mathematical occurrences don’t happen often and are spaced many years apart. So, here are a few fun ideas on how you can enjoy a rare day!


14 things you can do on 11-12-13

  • Spend 14 minutes giving God thanks for specific things or people in your life and reading Scripture.
  • Send 14 friends or family you haven’t talked to in awhile an email or text to let them know you love and appreciate them.
  • Spend 14 minutes indulging in a book you just haven’t had the chance to read. This can be family read out loud time!
  • Allow yourself 14 little treats–or 1/4 cup.
  • If you have kids, tell them THEY are going to be able to make a family decision. Announce that you’ll all have 14 uninterrupted minutes of family fun time. NO CELL PHONES, COMPUTERS, OR TEXTING ALLOWED! Give them 14 minutes to decide, then GO with it!
  • Take a 14 minute walk.
  • Spend 14 minutes indulging in a hobby you haven’t had a chance to enjoy!
  • Exercise for 14 minutes.
  • Do 14 NON selfish gestures for others. Keep count! Open a door, let someone get in line in front of you,…
  • Set a timer for 14 minutes and do some Fall Cleaning!
  • Set a timer for 14 minutes and clean out that drawer or closet you’ve been wanting to get too.
  • Call an older person and check on them. I don’t dare say 14 minutes.
  • Sing your favorite, most uplifting songs for 14 minutes straight!
  • Donate $14 to disaster relief in the Phillipines, or a hunger relief program that serves the US and/or overseas.
  • Spend 14 minutes writing a fun list of 14 things you’d like to do today! (Okay, that’s 15 items! I know! Couldn’t resist!)

Ooops! My timer just went off. Yep, you guessed it! It was for set for 14 minutes! I kinda went over…but before I go, please note that many of these items can be a family event or something you enjoy with friends! If you go over the time limit, stay in the moment, you are probably enjoying yourself! Whatever you choose to do, have fun with 11-12-13!   If you’ve liked this post and some of the tips, check out my Nisti K News page on Facebook. If you like it, please “LIKE” it! My goal was to help 14 people have a little more love in their day! Hope I succeeded! If I did, please let me know!~Nisti K!

By the way, although I can’t finish the memoir by midnight tonight, this post has been listed as an official Nisti K Delgroothe Mission–#11-12-13-14. That’s a good mission for today!


Follow an unfolding dream, maybe you’ll reach yours too!

Courtesy of: Nisti K Delgroothe
Courtesy of: Nisti K Delgroothe

Want to follow a writer who is fulfilling a dream (a novel, other projects, and a wide assortment of creative outlets) while she tries to help others do the same?

Well, you can peak in to “Nisti K News” on Facebook!

Last month, the Nisti K Delgroothe travel log was featured on this blog. It is a story of travel to the Mayan ruins and another perspective on December 21, 2012. (Nisti K’s Quest: 7 til 21)

Will Nisti K News be considered the first “reality” Facebook page? I don’t know but if one person is helped THAT IS COOL! I’ll be “watching”! *wink*wink*  or

A wiggle, 4 seconds, and an occasional drive…

Sparkle in the eyes,
Laughter from the gut,
Wonder that transcends time and place…

These are a few traits that I adore in children; one day I hope to write an article, story, or book that evokes any or all of these responses in them.

In my work with children I’ve seen the range of joy in their life, but I’ve unfortunately also seen heartache, illness, and pain. I don’t yet have a story that makes them smile or laugh through the rough spots, but I do what I can to help. And today I am encouraging everyone who reads this, that you can too!

If it only took 4 seconds each time, and an occasional drive, would you help?

It takes roughly 4 seconds to remove the most resistent beverage can tab and place it in a storage container. I have been collecting beverage can tabs for many years and it does become second nature. It might take a few wiggles, but it is worth the effort when I know it is helping sick children and their families.

Your local Ronald McDonald House Charities benefits from these beverage can tabs (tabs, not cans) that are turned into much needed funds for the Ronald McDonald House, Family Room (at the hospital), or Care Mobile (provides access to healthcare in vulnerable communities). Why don’t I just let Ronald explain:

Collecting beverage can tabs can be a fun personal project, or one that involves your family, church, or community group. For more information on the beverage tab collection program in your area click:

Nature’s reminder for a year ahead…

My usual perkiness was chafed this morning by annoyances I thought were left in the past year, 2010.  They were back, and one of the less significant ones included my some-timey internet connection that threatens to ruin my credibility with my online instructors.  Despite a lengthy chat with the cable company the night before, we’d made no progress on connectivity and they would be coming out later in the day.

After getting up early and starting a few chores, I began opening the window blinds and meditating on my Maker. (It’s nice to share frustrations with Him!) 

I knew I needed to let the hefty concerns go and keep moving forward–there’s a lot to do and a new year ahead. As I opened the last set of blinds, something fuzzy and rust-colored whisked by.  I’ve learned to grab my camera when this happens and snatched it from its case.

Was that a …? I wondered.

As soon as the lens extended, my subject came back in sight and I snapped a photo without hesitation. It was what I thought! A fox! I got another shot when it seemed to linger in a pose.  In seconds, it darted forward, headed east, changed direction, then headed north into the wooded patch near the stream.

Excited and amazed, I looked back at what I’d captured.

Red Fox in Southwest Michigan

(Okay. It’s not the best shot. )

I  turned back to the first photo –knowing that I’d captured  action –and got a crisp, clear image of the fox’s in progress deposit- leaving break in the yard!  Eww! Wouldn’t you know… it was the best shot. (I passed on posting it.)

A giggle rose to a laugh and once again, nature reminded me of a valuable lesson:

 Drop the toxic things that have you running in circles, get moving , make sure you’re on the right path, then… forge ahead!

That’s a good enough motto (and memory) for me!

Happy New Year! ~Kerstin

Hello world! Brave enough to be different? The President on The View.

Today was a historic day–watched a sitting president on a talk show and started my first blog! 

What a kick off  day for a blog!!  President Obama’s talk show appearance was just the kind of event that I’d like to sit down and talk about over a cup of coffee and a warm croissant! How I’d love to be at America’s water coolers and coffee rooms tomorrow!  I enjoy fair and thoughtful debates, good conversations, and learned the power of a question long ago–questions, questions, questions! I don’t enjoy hateful and mean discourse because I don’t see the point, but …that’s me. (I am not supposed to have hateful comments here so please don’t do it if you’re angry about the topic. Please! You’ll get me kicked off on my first day!)

Official White House Photo by Pete Souza

 Back to the topic. I do remember hearing the announcement, “President Obama will be on “The View”,” and I thought long and hard: Why would he choose to do that?  Then, I decided I needed to watch the show to see if a  former boss’ training of reading an agenda was still fresh.  As I sit here writing, I don’t think I learned anything new by watching the show. A fair conclusion had been reached before I watched it.  I believed there was a calculated risk being taken. He’d been on the show before and seems to have three out of the four (or…four out of the five) supporting him, or, at the least, pleasant toward him. Then, there’s Elizabeth… She represents those who staunchly “disagree” (at least on most matters–Afghanistan budget support was a shift).  My conclusion: the ladies of “The View” represent  opinions of America–people who support and like him no matter what, people who might disagree but are giving him a chance to prove himself and turn things around, and those who have never liked losing the control to “that one” (as Senator McCain disrespectfully called him during the campaign). 

Why be on “The View”?

My thought: the show appearance was probably in the works for a while–too many details for last-minute–so it might have been a “we can do this America” appearance. Why on “The View”?  I’d argue–representative opinions. Ladies sit on the panel and watch the show, but guys watch too. (Guys, you know you might do an occasional “click by” on the remote. Am I wrong? Would you tell?)  I’d be willing to bet that he knew tough times were going to call for bravery.  Bravery on the part of the people and bravery from our leaders. Maybe I’m wrong but follow me a second. President Obama, unlike Senator McCain (who openly admitted this as a shortcoming), proclaims to know a bit about economic principles.  Most economists knew we were in for a doozy and I believe the President got that sense too! Things were crumbling all around, before and after the 2008 election. No one really knew where it would stop and guesstimates were made as to what to do.  Ask an economist…

Thoughts after watching the show…

I think this was an effort to bring ease about the economy’s state,  and to be out there, informally, so people can see and hear him for themselves.  He spoke openly on the show about how political power-shift energy generates too much attention and that governing should take precedence. Okay. So… I believe he bravely positioned himself to take a punch on the political chin, knowing that people are drastically divided politically; knowing that people would be saying, “Uh…don’t YOU have governing to do?”; knowing that the media will hop on this with a whip and spurs, and knowing that many won’t understand (and will question) his “real” reason for being there. (See “Extra Stuff” for the President’s words.) After watching his appearance it did seem he was trying to cheer folks on. He didn’t point out that there has been multi-level irresponsibility that got us into this situation–a debt reliant citizenry, unscrupulous and shameful business and bank practices,  and policy and government officials who failed to institute their checks and balances–or that there’s a group of fiscally responsible people who are now struggling  when they shouldn’t be. He didn’t say that, nor did he point out that the whole world is struggling economically. He went on a talk show and cheered us on, sort of in the same manner as FDR’s radio spot–the fireside chat.

Retrieved from's Whitehouse timeline files

“There must be confidence in the people! …You people must have faith!… Let us unite in vanishing fear!” FDR confidently encouraged in his first fireside chat. (I listened to the audio file.) The last words of FDR’s  first chat were, “Together we can not fail!”  President Obama’s parting words on “The View” were: “There’s no reason why America … shouldn’t continue to be the greatest country on earth for decades and centuries to come. But, we just have to remind ourselves of what makes us great. And hopefully, I’ll be able to help lead the country through this difficult time so that we can continue on this extraordinary journey that we’ve been on.”

Slowly I begin to wonder, what will people say of President Obama’s chat on “The View” seventy some years from now…

Caio!  ~ Kerstin