Meet Me in St. Louis, 1944

Directed by Vincente Minnelli, Judy Garland stars in this film about a family who prepares for an out-of-state move after girl falls in love with a new boy in the neighborhood.

Although nominated for four Academy Awards in the areas of writing, cinematography, and music, the film left empty handed. However, Margaret O’Brien, who played Tootie, received a special Oscar, the Juvenile Award for outstanding child actress, for her work in this film.

The movie seems to be almost Sci-Fi in  its display of respect when compared to many of the shows on TV today. Sad that our culture has moved away from expectation of good manners. Watching this movie reminds me that there once was a time when doors didn’t have to be locked and a man’s word meant something. One scene in this movie that stood out to me was when Tootie was in trouble and her father sat by the table and calmly spoke to her about consequences and spankings. Today’s kids would have written that a bit differently, I think.

I’ve enjoyed listening to Judy Garland’s songs in this film. She has always been the sparkle in her films. It was hard for anyone else to outshine her. Minnelli and Garland met during the filming and married soon after.

The most famous song from this movie has to be “Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas”. It’s a Christmas favorite for many people.

Warm Hearts

Has there been a time when you regretted being cold to someone? Was someone cold to you and broke your heart?

God’s love is always warm.

I’m sharing a Bible verse today at Seek God With Me that may help us to take a step back and rethink our habits. Are we being cold to someone and not realizing it? Are we being lazy instead of loving?

I’m sure we’ve all had our moments of exasperation when we wanted to be more kind than we were. We all make mistakes. As a parent, I’ve been less than perfect. I want to show the love of God to my kids and still enforce firm guidelines for their conduct. There is a balance between ignoring the minor infractions and sticking to the rules. It’s a difficult dance for parents. But the warm love of God is always a welcome presence in any relationship. It’s how you melt the icy walls between people.

Join me at Seek God With Me for a look at how God helps us warm up.

It Happened on 5th Avenue, 1947

Mac, a homeless man, breaks into and stays in a millionaire’s home while the owners are wintering in the south. And with a warm heart, he opens it to guests in a cold season. However, Mac is unaware that one of the guests is the homeowner.

Victor Moore plays Mac, the homeless man who plans to spend the next several weeks in the boarded-up home of millionaire O’Connor while he's wintering in Virginia. O’Connor, played by Charles Ruggles, has Jim, played by Don DeFore, evicted from one of his  apartment buildings. Mac invites Jim to stay with him, and Jim invites in some of his friends who are also homeless. They all hide from the patrolmen who keep watch on Fifth Avenue.

Alan Hale Jr, of Gilligan’s Island fame, plays Whitey Temple, one of Jim’s guests. Another person staying in the millionaire’s home is Trudy. Since there is a post-war housing shortage, they let her stay. Jim and Trudy fall for each other, but he doesn’t know she’s the millionaire’s daughter.

Jim and friends design a housing project for Camp Kilson, a deserted army camp. They want to bid on the property and build the project there. O’Connor also has designs for Camp Kilson, but he wants to build a massive air cargo network. This film shows how the characters learn that people are more valuable than things.

Something Cold

Have you worked up a sweat in the yard or in the attic or doing a 5K run? Then you probably needed a cold glass of water when you were finished. Sometimes we need something cold.

If you live in the north, then you probably get tired of cold weather. Some people pack up and move south for the winter, just like birds. If you want to impact your community for the better, try to figure out a way to make something cold feel warm.

I’m doing that at Seek God With Me today. I hope to get our minds working on this challenge so we can urge each other on in our quest for warmth in a time of coldness – and I don’t mean the weather. I mean using warm smiles and handshakes to take the chill out of our greetings. I mean setting out to spring a warm surprise on others this winter.

How can you be someone’s hero and bring warmth to those around you? Join me at Seek God With Me.

Citizen Kane, 1941

Have you seen this classic film? Citizen Kane is about a rich man on his death bed, remembering his life.  

While young Charles Foster Kane plays on his sled in the snow, his mother, played by Agnes Moorehead, hands him over to be raised by Mr. Thatcher, a Wall Street financier, who will manage the boy’s newfound wealth. As an adult, Kane, played by Orson Welles, is in charge of his own money, and he decides to run a newspaper, among other things.

Citizen Kane could have been about any millionaire tycoon who runs or ruins the lives of those around him as he sees fit. However, the similarities to William Randolph Hearst created enough tension to build a decades-long feud between Hearst and Welles, which contributed to the movie’s low box office  sales.  

This was Orson Welles’ first film to be seen by the public. He was only 26 years old at the time. Although the film didn’t make any money (because of the feud), it was highly praised. The film had nine Oscar nominations, but the only Academy Award received for this film was for Best Writing Original Screenplay, which went to Herman J. Mankiewicz and Orson Welles. Welles is quoted as saying, “I started at the top and worked down.”

Being Warm

Some of us are starting to grab a jacket before we head outside in the morning. Not all of us. I’m still in short-sleeve shirts. It’ll be a while before I need a jacket. But for some, October marks a change in the weather. People are starting to use the word COLD for something besides describing how they like their lemonade.

But let’s look at being cold in a different way. I’ve noticed that some of the working folks around me are not always helpful and even truthful. I’ve seen a couple of people who seemed to be quite cold, even in the summer heat.

Join me at Seek GodWith Me where I’m sharing a Bible verse that speaks to this topic.

I was going to give this blog post the title “Don’t be cold. Be like Jesus.” But that’s kind of long for a title. Besides, I wanted to emphasize that the point is all about being warm and loving instead of cold. Check out my devotional at Seek God With Me and see if I got it right.