american-flag-5I haven’t blogged for a while. I’ve been off kilter, perhaps out of beat, overly concerned, or maybe even frightened about what’s becoming of My America.

I have never been political, and have never voiced my opinions like this before. I don’t presume to tell others what to think or feel or believe. These are just my thoughts.

America has only been around 241 years, a relatively short time compared to other countries and governments on the planet. But My America began with a bang that set it apart from anywhere else. My America started because European people sought freedom of religion. The American Revolution was waged to provide freedom from tyranny and unfair taxation without representation. The Civil War lashed out against slavery. My America has seen ups and downs, good times and bad times, war and peace, but it has always stood by its standards. My America had a strategic goal. It has always set the bar high for what is, and what is not, American…and the whole world knows what that means.

My America is not racist. My American is a place built on freedom of religion. My America accepts proud responsibility for the world with compassion and a helpful hand. My America promotes freedom of the press and legal protests. My America is tolerant and patient. My America strives to make the planet, and all who live on it, safe and clean with an eye toward future generations. My America stands for civil rights, women’s rights, and the rights of the poor, the old, and the children. For all of my 60+ years, My America has protected me and made me proud.

These days I do not feel protected, or valued, or heard, and I certainly do not feel proud.

sad-angel-2If it’s okay with the world, I will do everything I can to hold on to My America. I will pray and call upon my higher angels to make us all safe—Americans and the people of the whole world—since we are all feeling this un-American upheaval. I will hold My America in my heart with love and prayerful hopes that My America is still here after the unsettling confusion of the times. I am afraid and I do not want to lose My America.

I also pray that Mr. Trump calls upon his higher angels to see America as a whole and sets his agendas for the many, and not the few. It is, after all, American to do so.

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Welcome to ANGEL MOMENTS. My ideas will be here but I really want to hear your thoughts on angels, how they influence your life, and how you experience this amazing blessing.



Kitchen Tools 1Who loves to cook? Oh lord, I absolutely LOVE cooking. Even when we plan a vacation, I make sure the kitchen in the house we rent is well appointed and ready for me to cook as many meals as my fellow vacationers will allow. I plan the menu months in advance. I bring the items that may not be available – grill pan, citrus zester, professional knives – and my goal is to nourish and entertain. It’s kind of my calling. It wasn’t always that way, though.


Mom and Dad CookingI went to culinary school in my forties and discovered that we really do eat with our eyes and nose as much as our taste buds. Before that I cooked the way my mom and dad cooked—hearty Italian food made with lots of love, calories, fats, and carbs. However, it was a Native American medicine man who taught me the true power of feeding and nourishing people’s bellies and souls. What he did was transcend cooking into a heavenly art, something simple yet gratifying that can’t be conveyed through recipes or culinary techniques. It’s all about the prayer, and how the work is the prayer. Let me write that again … The work IS the prayer. I believe that this is especially true in the kitchen.


kitchen witchThe first time I encountered a Kitchen Witch it wasn’t the cute hanging figure that was so popular in the seventies. Remember those? I received three of them for my bridal shower. They were darling, but the real kitchen witch is my mother. She’s not a mean or nasty witch, warts at all, but a cooking wizard white witch who instinctively understood what I’d learn later at a Native American’s knee. Mom’s hands are holy. They kneaded mountains of dough, loading her magic into the bread with each tender touch. Those fingers chop and slice, layer and bake, decorate and graciously hand over each tidbit of perfection. Whether it was Italian chicken wedding soup from heaven, or tender, luscious orange cookies, everyone tasting her cooking knows it comes from a place bigger than her heart. It comes from her soul.


Kitchen AngelsI’ve met Kitchen Angels several times in my life. They are those amazing people who unblinkingly volunteer to cook at church events, prepare sandwiches at the local Meals on Wheels, carry food from paid functions to help the Food Bank, and generously trudge through the snow to take an ailing neighbor a pot of soup. These are the real Kitchen Angels, working tirelessly to feed and nourish those who need it most.

Not all of us can be a kitchen wizard white witch like my mom … but we all have the time and capacity to be Kitchen Angels. Check your cupboards. There must be at least ten cans of veggies or other dry good products that can help some organization struggling to feed the hungry in your neighborhood. Bless all you human angels who help out, and thank the heavens for the celestial beings that watch over us all.

Welcome to ANGEL MOMENTS. My ideas will be here but I really want to hear your thoughts on angels, how they influence your life, and how you experience this amazing blessing.

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Clock 1Here in America, we all know when to turn our clocks forward and back in the spring and fall. Spring forward…fall back…be sure to set the alarm correctly or waking will be confusing. That’s all well and good, keeps the daylight as long as possible in the winter and saves energy in the summer.  It keeps things interesting.

We practice the practical things and follow the rules, but when do we check our souls? Our ideas? Our faith? When do we take a moment to reset our soul clocks and try to understand the bigger picture? Welcome to Angel Moments, a place to explore angels, what they mean to us, and how they help us.

Angels, bookAngels. These celestial beings have played many different roles throughout history, all reflecting the time and mindset of society. The oldest bible stories tell of warriors and messengers. In the early 1900s images treated angels the way they treated St. Nicholas. A distinctively distinguished old man reaching out to bring a little joy to poor children became the jolly Christmas elf. Angles became chubby cherubs fluttering around on tiny wings and looking cute. A far cry from fearsome warriors and an even further cry from the messengers we all hope for.

bettany-and-gabrielWhere are our heads when it comes to angels these days? We’ve seen them in movies and on television as playful characters and vicious murderers, as distant lovers and desperate survivors. Artwork depicts angels with beautiful flowing hair wearing gowns and sporting massive snow white wings. Angels are shown crying and protecting, leading and following. They fight off the dark and guide the dead home. That’s a lot of jobs.

Angels talkingI personally have another theory. I believe very one of us has an angel or two all our own. We banter with them when making decisions, we negotiate when we want to do something we already know we shouldn’t, and we count on them to tell God what we desire and need and hope for. These companions sit close and are prepared for any situation, especially the ones we never see coming. For me, they stood, wings wrapped around me, as I listened to the breast cancer diagnosis. They told me jokes while I endured treatments. They soothed me through my fears and walked me to the other side of the disease. Beyond that, they have carried my dreams and hopes for my family and friends to God for me, interceding and most likely correcting my wishes to sound more like prayers. The angels beside me have opinions and I am trying my best to listen to them. They shield me from traffic accidents, household mishaps, and I try, I really try, to listen to them when I’m angry. Most times the words have already flown from my mouth before their advice registers, but I am trying. We all try.

I believe that angels let us make the mistakes to learn the lessons, but they also stand back with a gentle “Told you so” on their smiling lips. These are my most precious companions. I am careful to remind myself often of what it means to have such a gift. I reevaluate my beliefs twice each year when I turn the clocks back or forward. The bigger job is to respect other people’s angels.

Baseball-Glove-and-BatIt’s hard to deal with people, day in and day out. It’s difficult to keep the judgment behind and see only what’s in front of us. I’m a huge baseball fan. A failing pitcher takes me into a rant at times. “What is he doing? That batter has proven he will never swing at the low and inside pitch! Why is he pitching it?” There are a hundred reasons. He’s unable to throw the ball where he wants at the moment. The catcher is calling for that pitch. The manager intends for the pitcher to walk the batter. Lots and lots of reasons, all reasonable but my frustration seems to always win. The pitcher’s angel has it’s job and my angels have their job. I honestly do try, especially when I’m driving, watching sports, or dealing with the coming election. I imagine we were all born with patients. My poor guardian angels must deal with my inability to tap into that gift. They are the real champions in my life!

So again, welcome to ANGEL MOMENTS. My ideas will be here but I really want to hear your thoughts on angels, how they influence your life, and how you experience this amazing blessing.

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Deborah Riley-Magnus is an author and an author success coach. Exploration of good and evil, heaven and hell, and the practices of the light and the dark dominate her life and her work. Welcome to ANGEL MOMENTS. Please join in on the conversation.