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For a few weeks now I have been tackling projects around the house preparing for the winter's inevitable arrival. First was the dreaded sorting through closets. I packed away clothes my kids have outgrown, got hand me down bags ready, and switched over to cold-weather-wares.

Next was bringing totes up from the basement containing wreaths and lights to hang before the cold settled in--wrapping Pittsburgh in its icy tendrils. Then finally, the customary changing of linens to flannel sheets and cozy comforters. And here is where the real story begins.

I pulled out a cute comforter that I purchased on clearance last season intended for my four year old's bed. But to my dismay, there was a palm-sized discoloration in a very visible area. I don't mean to toot my own horn, (well, maybe just a little) but I pride myself on being able to obliterate pretty much any stain. And so I went to work.

Here's where things started to go sideways. My typical methods of stain removal backfired when the very dark colors of the backside began to bleed through to the very crisp, clean white front side. The more I tried to correct my error, the worse it seemed to get. I soon regretted even bothering.

"The discoloration would have been less noticeable," I chided myself. Three wash cycles and a boatload of Oxy Clean later, it was much better, but still not looking like the crisp new comforter that it was.

Throughout the entire process, from the moment I realized my error, I regretted not having taken the time to read the care label. I'll spare you the details, but suffice it to say that the manufacturer's instructions could have saved me from a chain of bad choices in attempting to correct my blunder.

It was not wasted on me, that this very dilemma often plays out in my life. I will not presume that you find yourself in this predicament, but for the sake of candor, I will admit to you that all too often, I find myself reacting, rather than thoughtfully responding to life. Desperately trying instead, to correct my missteps or to remedy uncomfortable circumstances by trying to work my way out of them. Much to my consternation, I often find that my knee-jerk reactions only serve to make things worse.

I have been making it a habit to read a chapter from the book of Proverbs each day--a book full of 'care tags', if you will. I have done this for several months now and, as you can imagine, my sharp corners