Sunday, November 23, 2008

Old friends and sweet conversation

This morning we have a guest speaker at our church who just happens to be an old friend from our years in Louisiana. They arrived yesterday afternoon; checked into the Holiday Inn Express; and later we picked them up for dinner -- Mexican was their choice.

Our conversation seemed to pick up where it left off. We filled in the gaps of time and some of what has transpired since we last saw each other: children, grandchildren, ministry, etc.

Friendship: a gift from God that will be in it's most perfected form -- in Heaven! If you have a friend you haven't spoken with in a while, given them a call and make connection. You'll be glad you did! Friendship is a gift!


Friday, November 21, 2008

A picture is worth 1000 words

Valerie won the book give away that I recently ran. She just happens to live 10 - 15 miles from me! (FYI: I was very careful to be fair and unbiased when drawing for the winner of the book.)

We decided to set a day and time for me to give the book to her. We finally decided to have dinner at her house last night. She told me she would like to see my vacation pictures. Since I hadn't yet printed them out, I decided to swing by Wal-Mart have them printed out to take to her house.

When using a digital camera, I have a tendency an impulse that causes me to take a PLETHORA of pictures, just in case . . . Well, I was late getting to Val's because . . . .it takes quite a while to print out . . . 600 + pics! Yes, you read correctly, over 600 pictures. I didn't realize there were that many!

And . . I know how stupid that was! I should have just taken my laptop and ran a slide show! However, if I am going to put them in an album, they will need to be printed out anyway - - maybe not 600 of them, but anyway. . . .

Now you know just what a real sweetheart Valerie is, because . . . . . .

she cooked a wonderful lasagna dinner and looked at EVERY ONE OF THE PICS! (
They weren't even all that interesting! )

So, if a picture is worth 1000 words . . . POOR VALERIE!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Wee Ones

Yesterday, in fact, every Wednesday, I have a full day with my wee ones. I spend the day with my two sweet grandchildren ages 4 years and 4 months. Then each Wednesday night I spend time in the toddler class at church. What an opportunity I have to put something positive into their little hearts and minds!

Last week one of the little girls had a minor tummy ache and didn't want to finish her coloring so she went and sat in the rocking chair. One of the little boys wanted to know why she did that so I told him. He then turned to the little girl and said, "When I get home, my mom and I will pray for you!" He just turned 4!

Isn't that just precious! He is such a SWEETHEART!

His mother is our music pastor and she and her husband are doing a wonderful job of instilling Godly principles in him. If all parents were as diligent as these two parents, how different our schools would be! How much better our world would become!

On the flip side, there is a sweet couple in our church who have a grandson that is very difficult to have in the class. (He only comes occasionally when they have him.) He is loud, very, very rough and extremely active. He hurts others and himself. In fact he is missing a tooth b/c of rough play with a truck at day care. The other children do not like having him around -- they say he is mean.

He was in class last night. Of course . . . we had a special project to do! (Indian headband w/ feather). This child makes everything more difficult, but we made it through the evening. I feel so sorry for the grandparents. They try hard to instill the good things in him (when they have him) but his mother does the opposite. His father is in the military and I'm not so sure about his parenting skills. The little one's parents have never been married and the home life is very unstable - obviously. He doesn't talk (as far as I can tell) and only makes eye contact when he chooses, which is rare. He just doesn't respond to things the way he should. He really needs some professional help, and after an evening with him -- so do I:)

One thing for sure, God knows what's in his little head and heart. He's a beautiful little boy on the outside, but his actions and the turmoil on the inside are heartbreaking. I pray that God will provide for him -- soon!

Christ loved children, and He enjoyed having them around Him. Wouldn't you have loved to have been there and listened to their conversations with the King of all ages? It breaks my heart . . . and makes me angry when the wee ones are mistreated, harmed and yes, killed. There is too much of this happening every single day! So much could be said about this but I know that we are all aware of the travesties of child abuse and murder by abortion or other means.

We have had two precious little girls 2 and 5, who were murderd in our small town. The 5 year old was murdered by her father; he is in prison for life. No one has been convicted of the murder of the 2 year old angel. The stepfather and mother of the wee one are both in prison: he for abuse and she for "should have known". All of those who bring harm to a child will have much to answer for when they stand before God!

"God, bless the wee ones. Guard their little hearts and minds and keep them safe from harm."


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

"This is NOT a drill!"

There are times when I read someone else's post and it gives me and idea of something I can post about. This is one of those times.

We like to take our vacations aboard cruise ships. I always feel like the cruise officially begins when the lifeboat drill and the unpacking is finished. The drills are very informative and are important for your survival should an emergency arrive. In case of a real emergency, you are instructed to dress in warm clothing, put on your life jacket, then head to your muster station. The crew members do several types of drills throughout a cruise and from time to time the Captain's voice can be heard over the intercom saying, "Crew, this is a drill. This is a drill."

On one of our vacations (our first Panama canal cruise to be exact) we had spent the day in Aruba and were on our way to Jamaica. We had retired for the night and were snug in our bed, when around 1:30 a.m. someone pounded on our door (very unusual). My hubs got up and peeked through the peephole and saw that it was a crew member. He opened the door and was standing face-to-face with the silhouette of a man standing in the hallway that was full . . . of smoke! The man was an officer and urged us to leave our stateroom asap because there was a fire!

Note: Fire is known as a ship's worse enemy!

Hubs got me up and told me to get dressed; to grab what I thought was important out of the safe, and be quick about it. Usually, I'm an up-and-at'm girl, but for some reason, I could not get it together. (I think my mind was in shock and couldn't fully process what I was hearing.)

The officer knocked on our door two or three times and in a very strained voice, asked us to leave our room . . . please! We finally got dressed and left the room and were instructed to go to the staircase and wait for further instructions! While we were sitting on the steps, the Captain's voice came over the intercom giving instructions to the crew, but, his last words were chilling:


There are no words to express what was racing through my mind at that moment! It was so surreal! I'm pretty sure that at some point, the Titanic crossed my mind :)

We were then instructed to go to our muster (lifeboat) station. We made our way to the appointed meeting place and waited to meet up with our friends. Soon they arrived dressed warmly with their life jackets on.

Hubs and I started laughing . . . at ourselves.

We were dressed in SHORTS, NO LIFE JACKETS (they were still in the closet of our stateroom). I can remember trying to decide what to get from the safe and finally decided on my wedding rings and a few choice pieces of jewelry . . . . that wouldn't weight me down . . . . while I was treading water ! ? ? ?! No passports, no money, no credit cards, no warm clothes, no life jackets ! ! ! I never even once thought about the lifeboats!!??? I guess I was just going to jump overboard at the "appropriate" time! What was I thinking? Obviously, I wasn't thinking! I was still asleep!

My hubs, also dressed for HOT WEATHER, had grabbed what was important to him . . . . his comb!

At least we were dressed. Some were in their pj's. Needless to say, we felt pretty stupid when sitting there with our well equipped and well dressed friends!

As it turned out, it was an electrical fire . . . three doors down from our stateroom. We were out of our room for the rest of the night. We sat and talked one-on-one with the Captain for a while. They provided all kinds of food, blankets and pillows. They also gave us credit on our account for not be able to use our room that night :)

The door to our stateroom was sealed so well that the room did not smell of smoke in the least. I just knew all of our clothing would stink like burnt electrical wires.

This past vacation (another Panama Canal cruise) we were awakened around 2:30 a.m. with our smoke alarm blaring . . LOUDLY! (Boy, there just seems to something about the Caribbean side of that cruise that creates incidents!)

I just want you to know that this time I was ready! I already had our "wardrobes" planned, complete with life jackets, my tote bag ready to EMPTY the entire contents of the safe and I fully expected to ride in a lifeboat instead of treading water! :)

This time there was no fire. A turbine (there are more than one and they generate electricity) went down for about 15 minutes. That caused an orderless fume to set off the very, very sensitive smoke alarms - LOUD smoke alarms. We had to take the battery out to stop the deafening noise. We could here other alarms going off in rooms up and down the hall.

We were thankful that there was no emergency this time, but you'd better believe that this gal was READY! I may have failed the first test, but I was ready to ace this one.

However, there is a more important test I plan on acing. I am making sure I am clothed in the proper attire for this one, too. This time, the reward is not just gaining life here on earth, but instead, eternal life with the Prince of Peace and the Lord of Lords! When the trumpet sounds, it won't be sounding off for a drill, it will be the real and final thing! It will NOT be a drill! Are you ready?


Monday, November 17, 2008

Scrub board, earaches & Christmas lights

From the title of my post you just my suspect that I had a wee bit of an unusual day and I kinda did.

My washing machine wasn't working properly so, last Monday (a week ago) I had a repairman come out to check it over. The diagnosis? It needed a new timer. So he ordered it and told me I could continue using the same cycles and he would order the new part. Good! I had five loads of laundry left to do so I began as soon as he left.

I will bullet most of this so it won't be so wordy. After repairman left:
  • Washer completely quit on load #1
  • Now I have 1 load of wet soapy clothes
  • 4 loads of dirty clothes
  • Call daughter-in-law for "HELP!"
  • Laundry all finished
One week has now passed. Waiting to hear from repairman. This morning I had a some things to wash so I got out my little lingerie scrub board and began washing a few things in the sink. The weather was so beautiful - a perfect day to hang a clothes outside (I have a retractable clothesline on the patio - just love it). (I don't love Laundromats.)

9:30 a.m. My daughter-in-law called:
  • Baby has a well-baby check at 11:00 a.m.
  • 4 year old up until 3:30 a.m. with earache
  • DIL needs my "HELP" with the doctor visit
  • Baby "perfect" - of course he is!
  • 4 year old had 2 infected ears! No wonder she couldn't sleep
  • Picked up her prescription
  • Headed home
  • Repair calls and says he will be here to fix washer this afternoon - Hallelujah!
  • Hubs began putting up Christmas lights - perfect weather for it
  • Helped him check for bad bulbs
  • Repairman an hour late
  • Washer fix - Yahoo!
  • It costed a few dollars less that he had estimated!
  • Put a load in to wash - it works!
  • Made hot chocolate mix
  • Made potato soup for dinner
This day was not exactly how I had planned it but I am so thankful that there were only simple, minor interruptions. No tragedies or heartaches -- just earaches. God is SO GOOD!

Have a nice evening with your families!

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Kids, Christmas, Truth & Traditions

Christmas will soon be here! -- You're welcome :)

It's such a (forgive me here) magical time of year for most people. I have fond memories of special treats baking in the oven that sent luscious aroma throughout the house; the smell of the Christmas tree; the cold on my face; the snow as it glistened under the moonlight; and the Christmas gifts! Oh, my, the anticipation was almost more than I could bear! I'm sure you can add your own memories to my short list.

Playing the Santa "game" was fun but my parents also told me the truth and taught me the true meaning of Christmas early on.

Then . . . . I became a parent. I didn't want to lie to my child . . . so what do I do. Mindy at Ponderings of the Heart had a post that got me to thinking about all of this.

When my son was small and it was time to begin teaching him about Christmas, I prayed and asked the Lord to help me share the truth without taking away the fun of Christmas as we know it in America. Here's what I came up with:

To emphasize that this was Jesus' birthday, I wrapped a gift and put it under our Christmas tree. This was a gift for Jesus and our son opened it first (symbolizing giving Christ first place). I took gold wrapping paper, traced, cut out and pasted some items in the box (shirt box) then wrapped it up nice and pretty.

When our son opened the gift,
I explained what each item meant. Each one represented something that Jesus really wants from us.

There was:

1. A Heart: First and foremost, Jesus wants us to give Him our hearts, to ask forgiveness for our sins and accept Him as our Lord and Savior (explained according to the child's age).

2. Hands: We give ourselves to help others - reaching out to those in need.

3. A Hammer: We give Him our labors. (His Daddy was/is Senior Pastor.) Working in our church, witnessing, etc.

4. Check/money/debit card: We give him money as the Bible teaches so that the church will have what it needs to
minister to people, etc., etc.

We did this for a few years, until we were sure that he understood what Christmas was really about. Then we hung a small "Bible" at the very top of our tree that told of the Christmas story from the book of Luke. We let our son read the story to us and eventually, he could recite it from memory.

Legend tells us that Santa Claus was Bishop Nicholas from a town of Myra in the 4th century. He helped the poor through his generosity. Loved by all who knew him for helping those in need, the church would later saint him for his kindness and good deeds. Since that time, around the world, many children do believe that if they are good and kind to all, they will receive gifts from St. Nick at Christmastime.

Santa? Yes, we played the Santa game with him. He will tell you today that Christmases were very special and fun. He still receives Christmas gifts from "Santa", the real one -- Dad! :)

I am doing something different with my granddaughter. I have a small Nativity set. For one week, each day the child opens a gift. Each gift is a piece of the Nativity set. Each piece is explained as the story of the birth of Christ is told. On the seventh and final day the gift contains a mirror, and when its opened , the child see herself/himself in the mirror. You explain that they are a very special gift for Jesus. It's a perfect opportunity to share salvation with them as well.

A few years ago we started a new tradition: the "pickle" hidden in the Christmas tree. Do any of you do that?

Many Christian parents struggle to find creative ways to teach their children the true meaning of Christmas. Maybe you are doing something special to get the message across to your children. I would love to hear what what you're doing. Also, if you have any family traditions that you want to share, that would be fun to learn as well.

However you celebrate, family fun and traditions, along with the real reason for the Christmas season, make for a wonderful holiday full of warmth, joy and peace of heart!


Saturday, November 15, 2008

And the winner is . . . . !

Thank you for entering my give-away for the

"What Shoe Are You!"
book by Lori Randall!

This was so much fun!

Now, down to business.

There were 12 of you who entered.
I typed the names and cut the paper in equal sizes.
I put them in my favorite all-purpose bowl.

(That's my favorite little bowl I grab for just about everything.)

Then Hubs drew out the winning name

and it is . . . . .

it is . . . .

Congratulations, Valerie!

I know you will enjoy the book.
I will email you and we can make arrangements to get this to you.

To all of you sweet bloggers, have a wonderful Saturday!


Friday, November 14, 2008

Last Day!

Today is the last day to enter the

Shoe Are You?"

book give-away!

The author is Lori Randall (pictured left). She is the 2002 Mrs. Oklahoma United States
2005 Mrs. Christian World
and a personal friend.

Lori has done an excellent job with her book. She shares scripture and detailed information about the God-given personality traits, the strengths and weaknesses. Not only does she give us insight into our strengths and weaknesses but she goes beyond that in giving insight into how to deal with other people and their personalities. Understanding and knowledge go a long way in aiding us to achieve harmony in our marriages, with our children, in friendships and in the workplace.

Instead of using the traditional names for the personalities, she changed them to make them more visual and easier to remember.

Sanguine: CLOWN SHOE
Phlegmatic: HOUSE SHOE

To enter, simply leave a comment and the winner will be announced tomorrow, Saturday, November 15.

So far there are 12 of you who have entered!

You can check out Lori's website by clicking the "What Shoe Are You?" button on the right.

Come back tomorrow and learn who the winner is.

This is fun :) !!


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

God Bless Our Veterans!

Today is
Thank You
to all who have served our country
and were willing to lay their lives on the line
for our freedom and safety.
To all of those who are presently serving,
who have volunteered to for this same cause,
God bless you!
With God's help,
your courage, sacrifice and heroism
have made this country great!
T-H-A-N-K Y-O-U ! !

I can do it . . . myself!

I must admit that I am a very independent person. I like to do things for myself. Well, that has come back to "bite" me.

This summer our church had an ice cream party -- yummy fun! I brought homemade ice cream and put the freezer in a bucket and yada, yada, yada -- it was very heavy!

When it was time to go home, the SUPERWOMAN syndrome kicked it and I picked up the bucket and freezer and after a few steps I realized that was a VERY, VERY bad idea. (ouch!)

Our Youth Pastor offered to carry it (he probably noticed the strain on my face or . . maybe the bulging vein in my neck) but would I let him feel like a gentleman and help me. NOOOO, not superwomen! God forbid that I could not do it myself! Hense, a very painful shoulder!

My shoulder did get better BUT . . . on vacation, we wanted to disembark the ship early, so, we signed up to be walk-offs, which means you handle your own luggage. Not a problem -- when you haven't been STUPID in the past!

As I was leaving the stateroom with my piggy-backed luggage (hubby had his own to handle), I didn't quite clear the doorway and my luggage caught on the doorway and jerked my arm/shoulder!

It did get better, again.

Now, I have been doing a major clean out, store and trash unneeded items around my house. So, that requires my arms and shoulders! I must have slept on it wrong last night and it is very irritated today.

So if you would, please, pray for my shoulder and arm . . . . and for some common sense :)

(Don't forget the give-away. It ends this Friday night and I will announce the winner Saturday.)


Monday, November 10, 2008


This is my very first give-away! I'm sooo excited!

So . . .
let's get to it!

I am giving away Lori Randall's book:

"What Shoe Are You ?"

This is a fun and informative book.
If you would like to be entered into the drawing for this give-away, just leave a comment between now and this Friday, November 14 and I will include your name.

The winner will be announced Saturday, November 15.

So. . . all 8 of my sweet followers and anyone else who happens to stop by, I look forward to hearing from you this week.

Note: If you would like to know a little more about Lori or what the book is about, go to my November 6 post or
Lori's website.

Have a wonderful Monday!


Sunday, November 9, 2008

For all Christians in the Military

It's so inspiring to see the Christian men and women of our military making a way to worship God whether it be in a military chapel, in the humblest of "homemade" settings or simply surrounded by the beauty of creation. God bless them for their faithfulness!

We may be feeling uneasy about the USA right now since we are so uncertain about the real President Elect Obama, but as the video will tell us, we must keep our eyes of Jesus!


Saturday, November 8, 2008

Finally Movtivated

We Americans are the most blessed people in the world! After spending time in Egypt, Africa, Mexico & Columbia, I came to the conclusion that even our very poorest have it so much better than the average person in the third world countries. ( Third world countries . . . I've often wondered . . . who are the second world countries . . . just wondering;)

Anyway, we are such a blessed people that we find it necessary to rent storage units to house all of our stuff. Isn't that pathetic? I must admit I am almost one of those "blessed people" but . . . I refuse to rent a storage unit.

So . . . for the past two weeks, I've finally been motivated to dive into the WHOLE house (which includes the garage and the attic -- Yeah, I know . . . . the superwoman syndrome). This will take a while because I am doing this as I find the spare time and with taking some Fridays off. I have become motivated to sort, store, give away and trash items that are no longer of use to me. I am so tired being surrounded by clutter -- even if it is organized.

I've been making decisions as to what items I really need to keep. I have purchased some dish and stemware boxes from the U-haul store so that I can store some of my Mom's crystal that will be given to my granddaughter when she is older.

The Salvation Army has received a car load all ready. I have another "pile" ready to take next week. I have kitchen cabinets full of dishes, platters, appliances and other things that I will be doing away with which will give me better organized space in the cabinets.

Next, I have hired a lady to help me wash walls and do a Fall cleaning. Fours hands can do a swifter job than two! :) I may retain her twice a month to help me out since my schedule (of life) is so hectic!

I know there are several bloggers out there who have been doing the same thing (well, maybe not the garage and attic). So . . . how about you? Have you been doing some extra cleaning as you prepare for Thanksgiving? If so, got any good, time saving tips?

Now I must go and put some lotion on my poor hands. (I really, really, dislike wearing gloves.)

(Oh, be watching. Next week I will start the give-away for Lori's book, "What Shoe Are You?" I'm so sorry if you wanted to comment on that post and were not able. I don't know what happened but it was not enabled. But . . I have fixed it! I will make sure that the give-away post doesn't have that problem.)


Friday, November 7, 2008

Mama Alway Said . . . .

It's amazing how our mother's words can come back to haunt us at times. One of the famous sayings of mothers is:

"Don't forget to wear clean underwear."

The following is a true story that my husband and I witnessed firsthand.

We were attending a funeral of a man in our little community. The ushers seated us on the front row, no less. The funeral began with some mishaps and faux pas (such as the minister announcing that the "nut's" gone -- referring to the deceased -- God as my witness . . . he said that!) . . .BUT, the BIGGEST was yet to come!

As we watched the mourners solemnly pay their last respects to the dearly departed, one nicely dressed lady caught our attention. She stood in front of the casket, nose buried in her Kleenex. All of a sudden, the elastic in her skirt gave way and her skirt plummeted to the floor.

Unbeknownst to her, she was now standing there -- in front of the church full of people -- wearing her suit top and a lovely beige slip! However, her husband is suddenly aware of her lack of clothing. Mister helpful Henry here quickly gives her a HUGH nudge in the side and points to the floor. (I guessed he was too shocked to be a gentleman and pick it up for her?)

Greatly embarrassed, she reaches down, grabs her skirt and pulls it back up and hangs on for dear life! She did not immediately go home. No. . . she stayed and clung fiercely to the skirt until the all of the funeral "festivities" were over.

Have you ever HAD to swallow an explosive laugh . . . . at a funeral? I thought I was going to die trying to hold it back. Later, I laughed until I cried --ROFL!!!!

Note: Since we leave in a very small town, we could not tell anyone about this for fear they might be her relative :o


Thursday, November 6, 2008

"What Shoe Are You?"

I have a dear friend (pictured on the left) who has written a book entitled "What Shoe Are You?"; understanding the personality traits. I am using her book in my class as our Sunday School lessons over the next few weeks. In fact, I'm privileged to have her actually do the teaching. She is a professional speaker but for me, over the next 5 weeks, she's working for chocolate ;)

Her name is Lori Randall, and I can highly recommend her to you if you are looking for a motivating speaker. She is the Mrs. Christian World 2005 and Mrs. Oklahoma United States 2002.

She has a tremendous testimony. With the birth of both of her children, Lori experienced severe postpartum depression and psychosis. The illness left her physically, emotionally and spiritually bankrupt. But God is His great mercy reached down and performed a miracle in Lori's life. It's a wonderful testimony of God's love, mercy and restoration.

Lori has done an excellent job with her book. She shares scripture and detailed information about the God-given personality traits, the strengths and weaknesses. Not only does she give us insight into our strengths and weaknesses but she goes beyond that in giving insight into how to deal with other people and their personalities. Understanding and knowledge go a long way in aiding us to achieve harmony in our marriages, with our children, in friendships and in the workplace.

Instead of using the traditional names for the personalities, she changed them to make them more visual and easier to remember.

Sanguine: CLOWN SHOE
Phlegmatic: HOUSE SHOE

FYI: Lori is a clown shoe :) She wears the shoes during her presentations as visual effect.

I have placed a link to her bookstore on my side bar. If you are interested, take a look.

However, be watching because I will be giving away one of her books in the next few days.

She is one of the sweetest, most fun and genteel ladies I have ever met and a faithful member of our church. So, if you need a speaker for a women's event, she would be thrilled to come and minister. Her website will give you all the info you need to contact her.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

7 Years . . . .?

Ooops! Look what I did!

I broke the back-of-my-hair-fixing-mirror!
Now that could be bad if I believed that a broken mirror brings 7 years bad luck!!

Well, I'm happy to say that I know that it doesn't. My fate is not in a broken piece of man-made glass, but instead, my life is in God's hands -- the hands of the very one who made the sand from which the glass was formed. I really have nothing to fear. It is wonderful to have the peace that is beyond understanding and to know that my future is under His control.

"Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by yo
ur name;
You are Mine.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you;
And through the rivers, they shall not overflow you.
When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned,
Nor shall the flame scorch you.
For I am the LORD your God,
The Holy One of Israel, your Savior."
~ Isaiah 43: 1b -3


Tuesday, November 4, 2008


Exercise your right as a citizen of the U.S.A. and prayerfully


Monday, November 3, 2008

Trick or Treat?

We had two sweet puppies visit us Saturday night.

Breanna, Grammie & Bryce (hidden under the puppy's head).

Breanna's under there somewhere.

Here's Bryce

Smile big for the camera!

A posing spook!?!

A big smile and a wet shirt!

Before the night was over, Breanna decided to play tricks on us. She had her treats so she thought she was suppose to trick us, too. She hid the pumpkins I had on the coffee table and the candy! She's a fun girl.

A fun night!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Vacation Pics Part 2 of 2

Whew! It has taken me what seems like FOREVER to get back to blogging. I actually did this slide show 6 times before it was complete. For some reason I kept losing it! Anyway, here is the 2nd and final part of the vacation pictures.