The Enid News and Eagle, Enid, OK

October 29, 2013

Think about what goals you can set

By Peggy Goodrich, columnist
Enid News & Eagle

— What is your destiny, your goal in life? Think about it.

When my grandparents came to this virgin land to eke out a living, they both knew that they were working toward a goal for their life. They met and married after they settled in Indian Territory, but they both had the same goals — to make life better for themselves and the generations who came after them. Thank goodness they had such high goals for themselves and stuck to their guns, so to speak. Even with setbacks like failed crops and having to eat turnips and more turnips, and Grandma’s mother dying in childbirth and Grandma having to raise her younger siblings, they kept their eyes on their goal and never  looked back to what could have been had they “stayed put” and not come west. I am grateful for that heritage of making goals and constantly working toward them.

My parents raised us seven kids during the worst of the Great Depression, when money was scarce and almost non-existent. But they knew what they wanted in life and worked day and night to achieve their goals. Daddy had been a teacher, but changed course when he realized he could make more money and have more stability by farming/ranching. Both parents worked side by side. Mother worked just as hard as Daddy did. Back then, as now, a real goal takes all people working  together — teamwork.

When Jim was shot through the stomach during World War II, it never occurred to him that he would die. He thinks he survived that machine gun bullet because there was a purpose for his life that had not been fulfilled. Even though he did not have a college degree or a “profession,” he had a stable, secure job with Champlin and worked there until they closed the plant and he retired rather than move to Texas.   We had a comfortable living.  

There is a wonderful lesson to be learned by watching someone like Jim. One can do the best they can with the education they have with the opportunities presented to them. They may never set the world on fire, but they can do the best they can at whatever task they undertake.

It seems to me that so many young people these days have the attitude that they may not live to adulthood — or if they do, so what! I hope this trend, if it is real, ends soon and they realize that they have a purpose for being on this wonderful earth. There is a reason for their being alive. They just have to search for it and find it and fulfill it. They may have to take a lot of jobs that are just jobs before they find their real calling, but every job is an experience that helps us learn to work with the public and to learn punctuality and getting along with co-workers.

Some people decided when they were very little what their life’s work would be and never veered from that plan. They may have detoured a little, but their eyes were always on their goal. Most of us went through several changes in our plans. We found someone special and got married, and children entered the picture, or we didn’t have the funds to attend the school of our choice, so we worked our way through college. Or we found the prefect job and stayed with it for many years, deciding that was what we wanted to do all along.

Far, far beyond what we want to do as an occupation is deciding what kind of life we want to live. No matter what profession we enter and pursue as our life’s work, we make up our minds, whether we want to be an asset to society and help others or simply exist for our own comfort and gratification. It seems the happiest people I know are those who do volunteer work or do things for others on a regular basis. They find time in their busy schedules to do for others. What a wonderful goal that is and what a way to find your destiny.

What are your goals? Your dreams? Your aspirations? Do you want to write a book? Compose an opus? Be a doctor or lawyer, or merchant chief? Do you aspire to be a singer or an actor? Do you want to be of service to others in the field of nursing or caring for children or ill people?      

One of the greatest occupations one can have is to be a loving parent. Many people have to work out of the home, but even with their hours away, they spend a great deal of quality time with their children, teaching them to be honorable members of society.  Children can be such a joy!

I was taught there is nothing wrong with any honest labor. Whether you are a ditch digger (Do they even have those anymore, or have backhoes taken over that job?) or mow lawns, or work as an electrician or plumber, or a car salesman, so long as you are gainfully employed and enjoy your work and helping others, you are doing something worthwhile and productive and meaningful.    

YOU are the one who makes your dreams and goals happen. Concentrate on forward movement. Don’t dwell on the past or what could have been if things were different. Have a goal in mind and work toward it. Believe in yourself Focus on strengths, not weaknesses. Nothing can stop you if you want something bad enough.

One of my goals and joys is sharing old and/or interesting recipes with my readers. Here is an easy yeast muffin recipe that makes any meal a masterpiece.

Spoon Rolls

2 cups lukewarm water

1 package yeast

1 stick melted butter

1⁄4 cup sugar

1 egg

4 cups self-rising flour

Dissolve yeast in lukewarm water at least five minutes, stirring until all dissolved. In large bowl, mix melted butter, sugar and egg. Stir in yeast mixture. Add two cups of the flour and beat until smooth. Stir in other two cups of flour. Scoop into well-greased muffin pans (about half to 2⁄3 full) and bake at 350 degrees for about 15 to 20 minutes until beautifully tan. This makes about 18 delightful muffins. I sometimes keep the dough in the refrigerator for several days and bake as needed.  

You are the only one who knows the best goal for your life. Think about it.

Send your comments to: Peggy Goodrich, Food For Thought, P.O. Box 1192, Enid, OK 73702.