Saturday, December 31, 2011

New beginnings...

New Year's Eve.
And someone died this morning. Someone I knew.
Someone I always looked forward to seeing.
Someone who meant a lot to a lot of people.

Two weeks ago he entered the hospital. Days later, the family was told he had cancer. Throughout his entire body. The fastest-growing cancer they had ever seen.
He was literally moments from eternity.
And he was ushered in this morning.

2012 begins soon...
      and many people won't celebrate who celebrated New Year's a year ago.
They passed away this year. 2011 was their last year on this earth. Many probably had no clue that this would be their last year on this planet; after all, how many of us think about that as we blow horns, cheer, and kiss love ones when the moment strikes at midnight and we sing "Auld Lang Syne"?

Morbid as it may sound, my own thoughts roll that way as I wait for the midnight moment to arrive...
     and 2012 to be ushered in.
Who won't make it to 2013?
How many of my loved ones will pass from this life to eternity this year?
Will I be one?
Will that change any of my plans, goals, dreams, or resolutions?

No. I will happily begin this new year content and excited about what lies ahead and...
     if God should take me home this year...
Happy New Year! :) 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Acceptance

Accepted.
You are - or you're not. You do - or you don't. 
We long for acceptance - to belong - to be part. 
We long to be embraced for ourselves... in spite of ourselves. 

Acceptance. 
It is the true thing everyone longs for. The one thing everyone craves. 
To walk in a room and to be greeted by everyone with hugs and smiles. 
And, in that small passing moment, you truly know you're loved, needed, and accepted... :)
 ~ Rena Harmon

There may come a time when, try as you might, you realize that there are times and places when and where you won't be accepted. The pain of the reality can bite, can hit, can land and grow from a tiny seed to a huge and strong root of bitterness and discouragement. 

Don't let it. Smile. Be willing to get up, smile one last time, hold you head up...
and walk away.

‎At some point you will realize that you have done too much for someone and that 
the only next possible step to do is to stop. 
Leave them alone. Walk away. It’s not like you’re giving up, and it’s not like you shouldn’t try. 
It’s just that you have to draw the line of determination from desperation. 
What is truly yours would eventually be yours, and what is not, no matter how hard you try, 
will never be. 
 ~ unknown, Wisdom Quotes



Monday, December 5, 2011

The tear.

This morning I had an encounter that filled me with emotion. Have you ever been there? In a place – in a time – in a realm that fills you to overwhelming with emotion that just wants to…

Move. 

Move through you and move out of you. And, when it does, relief can thankfully fill and refresh so you can go forward to your next place – time – realm. Reality must be dealt with, so emotional interludes must pass.

But something remained this morning.

As memories rushed through me of days gone by, encounters shared, and life lived, emotions played their accompaniment. The symphony of life once lived in the past played briefly as I was enroute to where I needed to be and, as I prepared to leave the memories behind in my car and enter reality, I looked down.

One round circle looked back at me from my lap.

It was as small as a paper-punched hole; like a piece of my heart punched through that remained as one spilled tear in my lap. I couldn’t wipe it up, blot it up, or get rid of it. It simply stared at me, as a reminder of my humanity.

You can leave a piece of history behind, but you can’t leave memories. They will remain, ingrained in your inner fibers, and may exhibit themselves from time to time as pieces of your heart flow through your tears.

One tear. The reminder. It was a beautiful memory. 

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving... every day!

If Thanksgiving weren't synonymous with gravy, butter and other festively dressed saturated fats, it could be the healthiest holiday around. That's not just because the bird itself is a great source of lean protein... or because sweet potatoes are rich in vitamins (just replace the marshmallow stuff with toasted walnuts = YUM!!)... 

Thanksgiving is about giving thanks and being with family and friends, and there's no question that both make us and you healthier. If you practice a life filled with consistent thanksgiving, research shows you're also likely to exercise more, have fewer aches and pains, and feel more optimistic than if you ramble on about things that drive you crazy or don't matter much. Consider... you can't complain and be thankful at the same time. Even better, studies show that 15 minutes of daily gratitude can dramatically decrease aging stress hormones in your body!

Celebrate this Thanksgiving holiday by showing your thanks. Remember people who are important in your life and write them a note of gratitude. Or maybe they'll be around your holiday table and you can thank them in person! You'll all feel more deeply connected and even happier to be together. While you're fussing with the bird, the centerpiece, or your new whole-grain stuffing, take a minute to put the "thanks" in "Thanksgiving." Your heart will be grateful, too.


Happy Thanksgiving! 
Take time today to tell the people you love...
you're grateful they're in your life. 

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I went back today.

Did you ever go back to a former life as a visitor, instead of a participant? Did you ever return to a former existence, when it's no longer your reality?

I went back to the place where I spent years of my life, where I poured a lot of my life - my heart - everything I had - and I went back as a spectator instead of the participant.

And it was exhilarating.

People I used to spend hours each day working with and for are now friends and acquaintances, and not my focus. I had time today to relax, to chat, and to pour my soul and being into others - instead of having it emptied from me.
I had time to love, to listen, to learn, to... enjoy.

I trust that if you ever leave a place in your life that seemed permanent,
but ended up not...
      a place that consumed you, but time gave replenishment...
            or a place that was your entire reality, but became a place in your history...
                  that you can return a better person - a bigger person - a stronger person
                         for the experience that made you that way.

I went back there today.
And for all of it - and for where I am today because of it - I am thankful.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Enjoying His grace... :)

The last day of the month. October 31. Two more to go, then the year's over. Wow!

So much has happened this year; yet, it went SO FAST.  It's almost 2012... Wow...

It's been a good year - a productive year. I trust it has for you too.

All of my goals have been met. *fist bump!* You know, those "New Year's Resolutions" that you put out on 12/31 and blow by 1/3?  I wouldn't let it happen. It's been a productively blessed year. I've got everything crossed off that list. Everything!  But... I never saw a lot of what happened this year coming when I flipped the new calendar on 1/1, and I wouldn't have imagined it anyway.

How about you? Has this year brought things into your life that you never would've thought of? 

So now I still have two months to get caught up with a to-do list I didn't count on and couldn't have thought of anyway, and it'll get done because everything's accomplished that I had set out to do this year. And then some. By God's grace, He smiled and made my life a blessed place with beautiful, Godly people. His grace is sufficient.  His love is unending! I have all that I need and much, much more, all provided from the Almighty hands of an all-loving and gracious God. I'm so thankful, and much too blessed to be stressed...

I hope that's true of you too.

Friday, October 14, 2011

A few random thoughts as I leave what's behind and go forward...

"Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened." ~ Dr. Seuss

Good memories are a treasure for the heart to keep warm and cuddle with. Good memories encourage us when life can be rude, and can be the teddy bear that makes us feel safe and secure. It's good memories that travel with us like a blanket which we can wrap ourselves in when uncertainty frowns in our face.

It's the good memories I take with me as I enter this new adventure and leave the place where I thought I'd be for the rest of my life. I've learned so much during the past few years about how to love and care for people, and I'm grateful for the muscles built through the workouts I endured. I feel peace - anticipation - because I know the road ahead is waiting. I'm ready to go!

I take joy in where I've been, what I've learned, and how I've grown, and I look forward to where I'm going. And it all... starts... now...

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Just above my nose...

It was a beautiful August evening - one of those nights with a warm gentle breeze and cicadas tuning up for a full performance as the sun sank lower in the sky. Thunderstorms were in the forecast for the next day, which meant lawn work needed to get done. It also meant the dog-walkers wanted to get full benefit of this late summer evening. The bushes were almost trimmed when a couple of dog-walkers stopped at a tree out by the road. They pointed, stared upward, and seemed enraptured by something more interesting than just leaves and branches.

"Hey, did you know there's a beehive in that tree?"
We looked over at the tree - and saw leaves and branches.
"Ohhh...
it's a BIG one!"

We walked towards the tree and continued to see... the tree... until we walked around the side and looked up - at the biggest thing hanging in a tree that I ever remembered seeing. It was unlike any hive I've ever seen in my life... because it wasn't just a beehive...

It was a HORNET'S nest.
Compared to hives I've seen, it was the Trump Tower!

It
was...
HUGE...


and it was a busy place - actively ACTIVE hornets were flying in and out of the entry hole and swarming around their meeting place. I wasn't going close, nor did I have a good plan as to how get rid of this thing! Trying to spray or knock this thing down could result in a fierce army of angry hornets being unleashed in a quietly peaceful neighborhood.

Not a good idea...


As I looked up, fascinated by this surprising discovery, I thought of life, and how hornets' nest of sorts are built and exist unknown and unheeded as we busily live our daily lives - totally unaware.

"Hornets" of life - destructive agents - build and congregate and we are clueless until
someone looks up...
and stops...
stares...
and is amazed...
by what has happened...
and has no idea of how to eradicate the structure without a mass catastrophe of consequence.

Fascinatingly dangerous.
Hidden from plain sight, yet just above our noses. Makes me wonder...
How many hornets' nest are likewise...
around me...?

Monday, August 29, 2011

There's something about a morning...

No matter how destructive the events of a day may have been;
while the effects may linger, the freshness of a new day brings
the margin of hope.
Indeed, 
and 
- with it -
renewal,
strength,
and a sense that yes, 
I CAN
I CHOOSE TO
I WILL
 pick up the pieces and 
move forward.
It's the dawn of a new day.
No matter what 
plans-
hopes-
goals-
were
halted-
ended-
dashed.
Yesterday was. Today is.
It's time to take the experience, forgive where needed, and move forward; 
not forgetting but, instead, 
choosing to remember 
and grow stronger through it because
God's timing is perfect-
His mercy is great-
and His grace is sufficient.


Don't cry because it's over; smile because it happened. ~ Dr. Seuss


Sunday, August 7, 2011

Stop...

When eating bamboo sprouts, remember the man who planted them. 
~ Chinese Proverb


I'm a grammaphobic typochondriac with an uncontrollable addiction to quotes.  I was quietly feeding my addiction and happily scanning through quotes tonight when my eyes stopped - and stared - as I read the above. 


No author to cite.  No one person is attributed with speaking this profound truth.  Instead, a proverb from a people.  A concept of a culture.  A way of life for a land. 


So profound.  So simple.  So something we don't think to do in our busy lives that are filled with running ahead, running amuck... simply running.  


So stop.  Smile.  Consider.  Give thanks.  


You are not alone.  Let's work together and provide for each other. 

Monday, July 25, 2011

The value of... time...

Ramblings as I sit and consider…
Time - a resource that cannot be created or repeated; an invaluable source of blessings (or a curse); a cherished gift (“the present”) that gets more valuable as a person gets older.

Time is meant to be used wisely, even when it means studying one’s navel to refocus and refresh.

Time - an effective channel to obtain information, wise counsel, and for moving forward in life.  Time hurts, time heals, and can move too slowly or too quickly.

How long a minute is depends on which side of the bathroom door you're on.

Time is valuable: a source for compounding interest to create wealth, calming nerves, and for dealing with the challenges of life.  MUCH has been written about the "Value of Time"; typing those 3 words into Google provided: About 659,000,000 results. 

Wikipedia's explanation for the value of time comes in economic terms as an opportunity cost for decision-making and, when one reverses the order to read about time value, the discussion brings a storm of equations to calculate the financial repercussions of investing over time to achieve wealth - while their discussion of compound interest graphically illustrates the financial value of time as it relates to a$$et building. 

In Benjamin Franklin’s words: Time is money. Yes. It is.  
 And so much more.

Time is priceless.  It lives outside of a quantitative box as a qualitative entity to embrace and capture within its fluidity and with a positive, hopeful attitude of joy.  The future value of time comes from the hert - not from a summation function.  An expectant heart looks at a positive value of time.  A disgruntled, disheartened, discouraged heart won’t value time, but will see it as an empty and bottomless pit that spirals downward for them.  The value of time = a choice.  A personal choice.  My choice. 

The internet is a plethora of research results, and among the results for “value of time” is an unknown source’s insights (which follow) that echo the fact that time = priceless.  Embrace time with a smile, enjoy it with enthusiasm, and experience excited expectation for what awaits ahead.  Find joy in your journey – each and every moment of it. 

Imagine there is a bank which credits your account each morning with $86,400, carries over no balance from day to day, allows you to keep no cash balance, and every evening cancels whatever part of the amount you had failed to use during the day.

What would you do?
Draw out every cent, of course!
Well, everyone has such a bank.  Its name is time.
Every morning, it credits you with 86,400 seconds.
Every night it writes off, as lost, whatever of this you have failed to invest to good purpose.
It carries over no balance.  It allows no overdraft.
Each day it opens a new account for you.
Each night it burns the records of the day.
If you fail to use the day's deposits, the loss is yours.
There is no going back.  There is no drawing against the tomorrow.
You must live in the present on today's deposits.
Invest it so as to get from it the utmost in health, happiness and success!
The clock is running.  Make the most of today.

To realize the value of ONE YEAR, ask a student who failed a grade.
To realize the value of ONE MONTH, ask a mother who gave birth to a premature baby.
To realize the value of ONE WEEK, ask the editor of a weekly newspaper.
To realize the value of ONE HOUR, ask the lovers who are waiting to meet.
To realize the value of ONE MINUTE, ask a person who missed the train.
To realize the value of ONE SECOND, ask a person who just avoided an accident.
To realize the value of ONE MILLISECOND, ask the person who won a silver medal in the Olympics.

Treasure every moment that you have!  And treasure it more because you shared it with someone special, special enough to spend your time.

And remember, time waits for no one.
Yesterday is history.
Tomorrow is a mystery.
Today is a gift.  That's why it's called the present.

Monday, July 4, 2011

Freedom!

Happy 4th of July!  I love this holiday for all that it symbolizes: freedom, independence, the rights of individuals, yet all under an umbrella of respect for one another, justice, and "the American way" of life.  I love the fireworks, the sounds of summer that accompany the celebration, and a few hours away from the grind of everyday life to think and reflect on the blessings I enjoy with my loved ones.


With that came the discovery yesterday that a long-time friend had not only passed away suddenly, but was being eulogized at the very moment I found out about his death.  So I'm still coming to grips with the meaning of his death and how his family is probably coping, as I didn't have the opportunity to spend time with them.

*Sigh*

I think of all the loved ones that died for the cause of freedom - how their families must've individually ached so I can enjoy my life.  I think of things happening around me - decisions to be made - loved ones to be cared for - life that I can enjoy because of the bountiful blessings I have.

I am thankful.  I am blessed.  I have hope.  
God Bless America - and Happy Birthday to YOU!! 

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Can I put this day in a jar and open it again... soon?

Saturday.
Sunshine!


71 degrees.
Almost no humidity.


Thankful today for a beautiful day...
There is absolutely NO schedule
 - no firm plans - 
- no long to-do list - 
- nothing squashing my face - 
and everything to be thankful for.  

Hubby is home.  
Cat is healthy and following me everywhere as 
I wander freely through my house, 
simply accomplishing things without pressure.

A gentle breeze flows into our open windows 
and filters through the open blinds.
Birds are singing, sheets are hanging out on a clothesline drying, 
and simple pleasures are being enjoyed.

This is the day the LORD has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it! 

Sunday, June 12, 2011

So thankful for my Daddy's genes...

As I look ahead to next Sunday being Father's Day, I admit that I miss my Dad even though it wasn't the easiest life with him.  He was rough around the edges, but he left a legacy of himself within me and I'm thankful for him.  He was unique (as each of us is) and the genes he passed along gave me some of his uniqueness.

From my Dad I inherited an innate ability to wake up at any given time without setting an alarm.  There is something he had that I inherited which is not unlike an internal button of an internal alarm clock.  When do I need to wake up at?  Done. No problem.  My eyes open at that time the next morning.

He also gave me mechanical aptitude: an ability to fix objects and figure out what's wrong with non-working things in my realm.  He was a car mechanic in the old days, when parts were parts and a well-oiled machine was simply that.  He could gerry-rig anything to get it back together and working, and my hands have a similar sense of finagling pieces together to make them functional.  Not like my Dad, but enough so I can say “thank you” for his legacy.

And more... Persistence.  Stubbornness. An intrinsically, internally, intentional passion to get things done and completed with quality and excellence, knowing that the completion will hold my name as a signature of the project. Starting and not finishing a job makes me intensely frustrated – just like my Dad.  I will literally go without anything and everything until I can say, "It is finished" and give up my proverbial ghost – then move on to the next, and the next, and the next project.  Life.  A series of new projects! 

My Dad blessed me with the animal personality of a beaver/lion.  He had a humongous work ethic.  So did my Mom.  Because of them, the genetic pool that fills my inner being can never be a calm lake, but churns relentlessly like a white-water rafting river.  Task-focused.  Details.  Checklists. To-do's beckon for my hands and, like a magnet with a refrigerator, I'm on them.  The lion within doesn't just sniff, but bites down hard on work with passionate glee, chewing it over and over until it’s ready to be swallowed.  Need something done?  Want something done?  I'm here for you, and I'm on it with a big smile on my face. If my Dad were alive I would hear him growl, "Git 'r done!!" but my heartbeat is already there. Thanks Dad!  Your genes fit me well!

And I have my Daddy's eyes.  BLUE.  I have a picture of the two of us, taken when I was 12 and there is no mistake - the eyes are matching sets.  Intense blue.  Freaky blue, as one of my daughter's friends told her.  They came from my Dad, and I am his daughter: his only daughter.  The only girl to wear his genes: my Daddy's well-worn genes.

Genes can be both a blessing and a curse.  The beaver/lion within me can roar, bite, and be a bit scary at times - both to me and to others.  Stubborn persistence, untempered by love, can mow other, less focused people, down into the ground – and hurt.  Non-morning people, such as my loving husband, aren’t so fond of early morning internal clock followers (Proverbs 27:14).  So the internal nature that I inherited from my Mom; the sensitivity, service, and a passion for God, provides a bit of balance within me, and for THAT I am incredibly thankful.  Thanks Mom, and a happy belated Mom’s Day to you as I remember you with love after saying goodbye to you so many years ago.  Gone – not forgotten. J

Happy Father’s Day, everyone!  If you are fortunate enough to have your Dad with you, thank him for his legacy within you.  Then hug your Mom, because she’s the one who carried and birthed his child…

You.
J


Sunday, June 5, 2011

Last year I hit a deer with my Jeep.  First time ever – hopefully last.

It was one of those absolutely awful moments that literally smacked out of nowhere.  I was driving along a country road towards home around 10 o’clock on a warm early summer night when, out of nowhere there were… running deer - right THERE!  BOOMP!  I had exactly NO time to do anything about hitting one of them except… HITTING IT.  One moment serenity, the next... in a split second...
Stunned deer in headlights!

Many thoughts have run through my mind following this encounter with the inappropriately running deer.  How quickly life happens.  How quickly I could’ve died…
     had I been driving a small car,
           if it were a bigger deer,
                    if it would’ve been thrown through my window on impact, or…

But I didn’t.  I’m still here with things to do.  Yuh HUH!  *fist bump* 

So I put myself in the deer’s place.  Running… on a warm summer evening… running,
     running,
          running
                until the moment splits and…

*YIKES!*

Stunned deer in headlights!

Immediately the deer has 3 choices:
> become road kill
> bolt and get out of the way
> jump onto the moving vehicle and hang on for the wild ride.

And I think to myself…
How many times does “life” hit in a moment?  How many times are we simply living our days and…
     running,
          running,
                running
                         until the moment splits and…

*YIKES!*


Choice needed!
> Freeze?  Become road kill.
> Bolt – FAST – and get out of the way?
          Or……
> Jump and grab.  Grab that thing of life and grab it tight.  White-knuckle it and HANG ON – eyes wide open – adrenaline rushing – feet flying – for the wild ride.

There are times you know - immediately – in an instant – that the last choice is THE one and…
          when you jump,
it may take your breath away for the short term but, 
          when the car of life slows down just a bit…

You’ll probably look back and *sigh* be so glad you took the jump and...
          GRABBED for it…

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Last month was a blur of activity, and one of the many things I chose to throw into the epic adventure was to make the shift from my trusty text/talk little Rumor to...

an Epic "Smart"phone.

Well, it's been almost a month now, and I'm still working through the consequences of adopting yet another techno-child.  Yes, I love my laptop, my Walkman, and all kinds of techno-time saving tools that enhance, enrich, and just plan ol' make my life better.  This phone... this "smart"phone... is seriously testing my stupidity and my sanity.

Android.  You have to download apps for... pretty much everything.  The phone is very limited without apps.  Once you find the great apps, it's a blast using them until you start tripping over them because they interfere with each other.  I have two apps for messaging - one combining the best features of each would be AWESOME.  I haven't found that one yet - and so it goes for GPS, music, and a lot of other things.

Let's just say it's still a bit too much of a good thing for me.  It's like sugar overload - too many candy bars rolled into one wrapper - too many toys on Christmas morning.  Plus the battery life to use all those toys is... well... let's just say all the toys can really suck the battery life.  Soooo... like a good mother, one needs to pack a bag when traveling with this little techno-child: car charger, wall charger, serial port charger.  In multiples.  In a variety of locations for emergencies.  A techno-diaper bag of sorts.

*sigh*  If I wasn't having so much fun being onlineably accessible anywhere, I'd look back and wish for the simplicity of what I left behind. Android - it's takes some getting used to, but the adventure is worth the speed bumps...

Monday, May 30, 2011

*sigh - Helping an aging parent cope with life...

Well, the time is here.  We knew it would probably come sometime, and that sometime is now.  The aging parent now needs more care than freedom.  Now we need to consider blending our lives back together again - pursuing a reversal from being the child of the parent to parenting... the parent.

My husband's 85-year-old mother has enjoyed living freely and alone since being widowed in 1998.  She and his Dad lived some distance from us when Dad succumbed to cancer, so we found a nice condo about two miles from our home for Mom to move into less than a year after he died.  She lives on one side; her widowed sister-in-law lives in the other.  We pick her up for church on Sundays, enjoy dinner with her, and see her sporadically through the week.  She's healthy and drives herself to the store, the doctor, to her friend's homes - whenever and wherever she wants.  She's enjoyed her freedom; we've enjoyed ours.  Yes, we've had times where we've needed to be closer and take care of her but, by and large, it's been a free existence for her...

Until now.


Seven years ago we put wheels into motion that will now start moving faster.  We spent time with her lawyer and put documentation together to protect her assets.  A durable power of attorney and other legal documents were filed: a will, a living will, a health care power of attorney.  We met with a financial planner to ensure her assets were not only protected, but maximized to ensure that she could enjoy life without substantial financial encumbrances.  Joint tenancy and right of ownership were all checked and double-checked: for the future.

Last month we met with the lawyer, insurer, and now are preparing to take over her day-to-day finances.  The future has become the reality: now. There are far too many who prey on older people - especially trusting old people - and she gets confused easily.  Now we're even considering the potential of a mother-in-law suite within our home - to protect the one we love.

Are you dealing with this situation - or perhaps will be in the future?  There are some great websites: www.aarp.com, www.agingparents.com and more that provide helpful online information!  It’s never too early to have a sincere, but bluntly honest talk with your loved one.  Know where their important papers are kept, where their financial assets are held, and plan together for the future.  Make sure you are legally prepared for the potential of nursing home or other long-term care.  Meet with the lawyer, the financial planner, the bank personnel to ensure asset and personal protection of your loved one.  Be prepared to take care of their day-to-day needs BEFORE the time comes because...

The time will probably come sooner than you think. Preparation will hopefully make this journey a bit easier to embark on and maneuver through… 

Friday, May 27, 2011

Wow.  It's been almost a month since I've been here!  It's not that I've forgotten - no way.  It's just...

Sometimes life has a way of getting in the way of life, and the urgencies of the necessities overwhelm the normalcy of the typical.  LIFE.

It's been a blur.  In its wake, yet a new reality and a new normalcy.  For the good.  The best?  Coming.  We're making progress. 

A new opportunity came literally out of nowhere that capitalizes and expands a number of my own passions and is now part of my daily schedule - not routine - not yet - as I form new habits and disciplines.  Ever been in this place?  There's something that comes into your realm that you want and enjoy and is for the overall good but, to get it entrenched into your being you have to THINK and yes... schedule it in... 

I'm looking forward to the time when this new part of my daily life is indeed part of my daily habit and routine...  

...a new facet of my own persona to embrace, embellish, and enjoy.  It gives renewed hope as I pursue lifelong goals and a passion to serve my friends right here in my community.  Making my world a better place and helping others succeed is a lighter fluid that I enjoy pouring in and through the charcoal of my existance, and the spark to light a new fire has landed and is now being fanned.

All that and taking care of a bunch of loose ends for my 85-year-old mother-in-law combined with an early vacation out of state created a flash of time normally enjoyed as a couple of weeks.  No problem - it brought summer a bit faster!

I'm back.  I'm landing on my feet!  With a fresh outlook that comes from launching and pursuing a new, enjoyable adventure.

Ever get to the place where you're stuck, and getting stucker?  I was, but I've found some freshness and joy in a new role with a profound friend and mentor.  Ever feel trapped, with no door of release?  My hand was given a knob, and I turned it.  The door of release is swinging open.

It's a good way to launch the summer.  Busy, and GOOD.  More challenge = more life in my life.

Sometimes life has a bit too much life going on but time has ways of working those kinks out, especially for those with hope who are willing to work hard to make their goals a reality. 


Friday, May 6, 2011

Happy Mother's Day!

Happy Mother's Day to all my fellow Moms, as we each think back over the years - how quickly they passed!!  Why is it that when we were expecting, the days dragged endlessly?  After our precious baby arrived, the nights AND days seemed endless at time - full of feedings and burpings and poopings and... "What do I do about...???" 

Why was it that the terrible two's and three's seemed to last at least two to three hundred years, as we endured all those moments of restraining ourselves from strangling the little package of rampant evil, also known as the "fruit of our womb"?  Then school came and stole our babies, replacing them with gum-chewing, eyeball-rolling teenagers who looked at us like we were aliens from another race of species and time.  What a treasure the teen years are, and what vivid memories they create...

My child is a married woman - now my counterpart in many ways.  I treasure the memories created through the years and laugh at many that we now share together as adults.

Happy Mother's Day to all - treasure the honor and blessings that motherhood brings. :)

Friday, April 29, 2011

Ohhhh, the hats.... :)

My daughter's name is Kate.  My one, my only.  We chose the name simply because we liked it.  Little did I know when we chose that name how famous it would be one day... today.

Today was the day for a royal wedding.  People all over our area turned on their TVs, streaming media, and networking devices at 4am to watch a one-in-a-lifetime event: the royal wedding of Prince William and Kate, now known as Duchess Katherine.  No.  I wasn't one of those.  My preferred activity at that hour is sleeping, which I actively pursued this morning at that time.  But, after I got up and had a cup of fresh coffee in my hand, I flipped on the TV to watch... The Weather Channel, just like I do every morning...

but only long enough to see what my day was going to be like (sunny & cool), because I was as curious as everyone else about what this extravaganza media event was going to look like.

The dress - NICE.  Sleeves - FULL sleeves, which I really like...

There'll be a lot of girls wearing that style during the next few years, for sure.  What a long aisle to walk - WOOT!!  I'd want my Nikes or New Balance on to really enjoy it.  High heels + that distance = OUCH OUCH OUCH...

The best part of the show?? Ohhh, hands down and heads up - the HATS!!!  Even in the beautiful photo above, the plethora of interesting headgear abounds.... Oh boy oh boy oh boy - I'm looking forward to late-night commentary just to hear if anyone says anything about the heads in Westminster Abbey today.

The winner??? Well, it looks like Princess Beatrice and her bizarre headress take the award for that category, although there were some close runners-up.  Okay, as one who avoids hats as much as possible, I have to ask: What WAS she... thinking????  Where and how do you store something like that... hat...

but there were plenty of very beautiful and very interesting headdresses - in abundance - for this very elegant affair.  Very scenic at the top level, for sure...

Once in a very great while there's an occasion where an event has something interesting and novel to view, and today's event was certainly worth looking up above eye level to see how people chose to top off their outfits...

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The gift :)


Sunrise.

What do you think of when you hear the word?
Camping trips?  Beautiful pictures?
Not seeing it because you like to sleep in?   
I love sunrise.  I actually love dark & early, then...
a
new
beginning.

An old saying goes something like this:
"The clock is running. Make the most of today. Time waits for no man. Yesterday is history. Tomorrow is a mystery. Today is a gift. 
That's why it's called the present."
 
God's gift.  Our present.

Like a shade rises from covering a window, seeing the sun come up over the horizon - growing, shining, with an ever-increasing amount of light - brings forth a whole new beginning….
I can't help but think that God designed the beauty of sunrise for a number of specific reasons.  It’s a splendor enjoyed by those who make the intentional decision to get up before dawn to watch the display of God's unwrapping of the gift of a new day through the unveiling of a sunrise.  A proverbial paintbrush and palette, producing a masterpiece of unique color and display that cannot be imagined, predicted, or repeated. 


Dawn’s production.
Exposed.
Revealed.
Displayed in majesty. 
A new day arises, yawns, stretches, and begins.
“Yesterday is a canceled check; tomorrow is a promissory note; 
today is the only cash you have - so spend it wisely” 
Kay Lyons

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Character

People seem not to see that their opinion of the world is also a confession of character. 
Ralph Waldo Emerson


Character is what you are in the dark.

Dwight L. Moody


You can tell a lot about a person's insides - their heart - by what they write, what they say, and how they react.  You can tell a lot more about your own character by how you do the above - when alone, where no one is watching.  


As you sit alone - or when surrounded by the crowd - consider...
If people could see my insides, read my mind, broadcast how I feel... 
would that be a good thing?  
Am I content - "proud" - of who I am, for real?


What am I doing about the real me -
the me that lives in the dark, away from human view?


I want to be as transparent in the dark as I am in the light.  
Above reproach is a worthy goal. :)