Bell bottoms, hip-huggers and hot pants

Polyester pants, mohair sweaters, leather jackets, suede boots and wool skirts

Black and blue, brown and orange, yellow with red polka dots

plaids and stripes, patchwork and straight lines

boys- looking and laughing, smooth talking and exciting!


Mini-skirts, halter tops and A-line dresses

Knee-hi boots and fish-net stockings

Mascara and eyeliner

Afros and beehive hairdos

Styling and profiling all for the boys!


Boy watching and boy attracting

Prancing up and down the streets

Dancing in the school gym

Smoking cigarettes and walking to school

Scoping and hoping to get noticed!


The Temptation, The Supreme and Ike & Tina Turner Revue

Jerry Butler, Marvin Gaye, Al Green and Isaac Hayes

Mary Wells and Aretha Franklin

James Brown, the Isley Brothers and Junior Walker and the All-Stars

WAMO, transistor radios and sweet soul music!





The Drive-in Theater, Highland Park, Kennywood Park and the Black Arts Festival

Gimbels, Kaufmanns, Joseph Horne, Lerner Shops, G.C. Murphy and McCrory

Fifth Avenue, Penn Avenue, Washington Boulevard,

East Liberty, Homewood, Rankin and Braddock, Downtown

Places to go and so many people to see!


Dancing, singing, reading, and writing

Dreaming, walking, happy and hopeful, playing foolish and potentially hurtful pranks

Trusting, naïve and far from being centered

Forward looking and believing all things are possible!

Goal setting, planning, working; goal setting, planning, working; goal setting planning, working…!



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Posted by on December 17, 2015 in Inspirational


2015 Second Sunday in Advent

Source: 2015 Second Sunday in Advent

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Posted by on December 7, 2015 in Inspirational


A Litany of Thanks for Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Almighty God unto whom all hearts and minds are open and from whom nothing is hidden, you are Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer of life. Please accept this litany of thanksgiving.

Thank you for meeting our basic needs and for blessing us to enjoy and some comforts.

Thank you for the beauty and diversity of nature.  All of nature testifies to your awesome creative power.

Thank you for the arts and sports that entertain inform and inspire.

Thank you for good, loyal and nurturing friends, family and pets.

Thank you for the energy, determination, optimism and strength of youth and for the experience, patience and persistence of the aged, and for the wisdom of both.

Thank you for the marvels of modern medicine and technology.

Thank you for your amazing grace that forgives our sins against you and that makes it possible for us to forgive others.

Thank you for using some of the most unlikely people and unusual circumstances to fulfill your purpose.

Thank you for turning tragedies into triumphs and for calming chaos.

Most of all, thank you for Jesus-Author and Finisher of the Christian faith!

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Posted by on November 24, 2015 in Inspirational


A Litany of Thanks for Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Almighty God unto whom all hearts and minds are open and from whom nothing is hidden, please accept the following thank offering.

Thank you for another opportunity to participate in your reconciling, resurrecting and restoring process.

Thank you for the resiliency of the human spirit.

Thank you for America, a land of great opportunity and despite its shortcoming it is one of the greatest countries on earth.

Thank you for the freedom to criticize our government without retribution-this is a freedom denied to many.

Thank you for activist past, present, and those still to come, who through selfless actions have lived the call: Justice for all!

Thank you for the abolitionists who fought to end Slavery in America (please do not allow their great sacrifices to be forgotten or taken for granted)!

Thank you that in America there is freedom of religion!!

Thank you for the witness of the American Africans who survived the dehumanizing system of slavery and for those who have thrived in spite of living under the hardships imposed by Jim Crow Law.

Thank you for the thousands, if not millions, of Europeans who stood against Hitler’s reign of terror. May their sacrifices be forever immortalized.

Thank you for the survivors of the Jewish Holocaust who are living testimonies to the power of the human spirit to overcome evil. Their compelling stories remind us that evil is alive and well.

As always, thank you for Jesus-Author and Finisher of the Christian faith.



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Posted by on November 17, 2015 in Inspirational


A Litany of Thanks for Tuesday, November 10, 2015

African Wildlife

Almighty God unto whom all hearts and minds are open and from whom nothing is hidden, you alone are the Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer of life.

Thank you for safe drinking water, nutritious and delicious food, and for decent shelter and clothing.

Thank you for a reasonable portion of health and strength.

Thank you for your faithfulness and long suffering toward us.

Thank you for empowering us to turn tragedies into triumphant celebrations.

Thank you for granting us the grace to experience peace and calm in the middle of life’s chaos.

Thank you for creating the beautiful, diverse, fascinating, although sometimes frightening, and complex ecosystem.

The seasons

Thank you for technology.

Thank you for a measure of faith.

Thank you for hope and possibilities!

Most of all thank you for Jesus, Author and Finisher of the Christian faith.

marine life

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Posted by on November 11, 2015 in Inspirational


A Thanksgiving Litany for Tuesday Evening, November 3, 2015

Things for which we are thankful

Almighty God unto whom all hearts and minds are open and from whom nothing is hidden we come humbly before your throne of grace.  We acknowledge you as Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer and we   thank you for all things great and small.

Thank you for clean and safe drinking water.

water that is safe for drinking

Thank you for food and shelter and decent clothing.

Thank you for another day among the living to worship you in spirit and in truth and to demonstrate your love.

Thank you for many do overs.

Thank you for protection from things seen and unseen.

decent shelter from the elements

decent shelter from the elements

Thank you for dreams achieved and for those dreams yet to be manifested.

Thank you for the gifts of laughter and joy.

Thank you for your constant presence.

Most of all, thank you for Jesus- Author and Finisher of the Christian faith.

In Jesus’ name we pray.  Amen

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Posted by on November 4, 2015 in Inspirational


Weighing the Week that Was

Recently I ran into a lovely family I had not seen for several months. I was glad to see them and the parents appeared happy to see me. The small children, understandably, were oblivious to my presence.  I commented on how much the children had grown. Smiling warmly the mother pointed to one of her sons and said, “Look at _______ he has really gotten big.”

I concurred by saying, “Yes he has really grown.”

Still smiling and looking intently at me the mom replied, “And you have put on some sizes too.”

Not quite believing I had heard correctly, I stupidly said “Huh!”

Looking directly at me still smiling and nodding her head in the affirmative the mom said, “You have put on some sizes too.”

I was surprised by the comment, but not offended.  I didn’t know quite how to respond because I thought I was looking trim and fit.  I simply smiled and said, “It was good to see you. Have a nice day.” Later I shared the conversation with my son. We both chuckled. I also shared the conversation with one of my brothers. He and I also had a good laugh.

A few days later as I dressed for work I decided to wear a pair of slacks that I hadn’t worn in about two years. The pants fit smoothly over my thighs but I had difficulty fastening them. Determined to wear the pants, I consigned myself to the fact that when I sat down I would have to unbutton them to keep them from ripping and fasten them when I stood up to keep them from falling down. I left home feeling extremely uncomfortable in the too tight around the waist pants. But, I was happy that my weight had not increased dramatically, just a few inches around the waist.

On the way to work I dropped by the home of a dear friend. I explained my too tight pants situation to her. She laughed and said, “Ms. Hoots you need to buy yourself a pair of pants.” Which I did immediately after leaving her house.

I was pleased as punch to find a pair of designer slacks in my size at a great price.  I tried on the pants in the fitting room before paying for them. As I examined the fit in the mirror I concluded they looked perfect on me. I made my purchase and changed into my new smooth fitting, figure flattering and comfortable pants.

However, shortly after walking around in my new pants I began to feel them rise up my legs. Before long I was walking around in high waters, and don’t you know someone actually pointed to my pants and asked,, “Miss Allegra, where is the flood?”  We both had a good laugh and I determined to lose weight!

As a result of the “you have gained some sizes” comment and the high water pants wearing experience, I have had two hardy laughs at my own expense. More importantly I am reminded of the Scripture that reads: “A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a crushed spirit dries up the bones.”  Proverbs 17:22

Thank you God for the gift of innocent, clean laughter and the ability not to take myself too seriously!


Posted by on November 2, 2015 in Inspirational