Welcome to my eclectic journey of my life and delights. This year my theme is surrendering my writing pen to the true author, Jesus Christ, while looking forward to the future, reflecting on the past and dancing through my journey.

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Gotta Move - Sunday Singing

I just have to move...if I don't, well, I get stuck in the mud and allow everything in life to drag me down.  My spirit soars with music and movement.  My hands raised in praise to the One who made me and has called me to move to the beat of a different drum.

As a mother of boys this video just made me giggle.  What a creative God we serve, who lifts up our spirits and  moves us closer to Him.  My prayer for you today....may you MOVE and not give up.  There is gonna be brighter days!


I'm not about to give up
Because I heard you say
There's gonna be brighter days

There's gonna be brighter days
I won't stop, I'll keep my head up
No, I'm not here to stay
There's gonna be brighter days
There's gonna be brighter days

I just might bend but I won't break
As long as I can see your face

When life won't play along
And right keeps going wrong
And I can't seem to find my way
I know where I am found
So I won't let it drag me down
Oh, I'll keep dancing anyway

I'm gonna move (move)
I'm gonna move (move)
I'm gonna move

I've got to hold it steady
Keep my head in the game
Everything is about to change
Everything is about to change

This hurt is getting heavy
But I'm not about to cave
Everything's about to change
There's gonna be brighter days

I just might bend but won't break
As long as I can see your face


No matter what may come
Gotta move to a different drum
No matter what life brings
Gotta move gotta move to a different beat [x2]

I just might bend but won't break
As long as I can see your face

[Chorus x2]

No matter what may come
Gotta move to a different drum
No matter what life brings
Gotta move gotta move to a different beat

Friday, April 27, 2012

The War is On

"You are going down!" echoed in my ears as I gathered my partner for the annihilation of the broccoli destroying worms. This "want-to-be", "merciless", suburban farmer" was calling it WAR.  Benjamin and I would give Mr McGregor a run for his money.

You can't hide!!!  You are going down...can you tell I live in a boy's world, these are the words they taunt each other with while competing in a game?

Benjamin got excited to see them inch their ways up his arm......and his gift of mercy was revealed when I declared they had to be killed.  "No we can't kill them."  So off I ran to find a rescue container.

I just wanted this......

NOW WHO IS GOING TO WIN THIS WAR?  The grocery store is looking better everyday and I am soooooooooooo glad we don't have to depend on my gardening.  I did pick one radish...now what do you do with just one?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Lasso My Time

yahoo image... had to grab a Texas looking clock...trying to lasso time

Tick, tock, tick, tock... so goes the clock.  One year, I told my mother all of her clocks drove me crazy. Retirement doesn't control my parents with full schedules, while I have felt clocks invade every minute of my day with full schedules.  The last thing I wanted to see was two clocks per room ticking away, reminding me of obligations.

We all go through very busy seasons of life where posted calendars keep our families going the right direction. Then before the hour hand moves, we rarely find ourselves with extra time on our hands.  This fall found me with extra time for the first time in my 28 years of parenting.  While this was greeted with a warm welcome, I can also say that time ticked away without my awareness.

Conviction came through this quote in my Easter season devotional:

          Philip Berrigan
            "Physiological studies show Americans live in the less than 40% awareness.  Studies show
             an enormous waste of potential lost to trivial pursuits....game playing, fantasizing, daydreaming,
             television, self-pity, brooding, boredom, gluttony in food and drink.
             Lost is the prospect of personal and social renewal - reading, study, meditation, prayer
             teaching, service to the poor, justice and peacemaking, and non-violent resistance.
             The scripture likens such crippled attentiveness to death - death before one dies.

So after my "weight reality check," I had a "time reality check".  I grabbed a fun notebook to journal where my time was flying to.  Observations allowed me to be more "intentional" with my day.  I found grabbing my time also brought a new sense of fulfillment.
  • Staying on a regular schedule going to bed and waking in the morning removed a feeling of chaos
  • Rising early before everyone else allowed me to have a quiet time with the Lord
  • Taking the time to exercise gave me more energy to enjoy the rest of my time (do it early)
  • Finishing up the things I don't care for first allowed me to enjoy old interests
  • Keeping a schedule also allowed more flexibility
  • Recording my time motivated me to establish more of a route and to watch for time robbers
  • Grabbing hold of my time allows me to live more "intentionally"
  • Fulfillment at the end of the day was brought by spending my time wisely... also brought peaceful sleep
  • A desire to be Aware and Not Die before Natural Death!...will put me in less than 40% of Americans...I think that is a good goal for life!

Monday, April 23, 2012

The Lucille Bag

The fun thing about a "reality check" is the enjoyment of finding time to revisit old delights.  This week I threaded my sewing machine, yes this time with glasses, and put my creative side to work.  Why not indulge in some fruit of this "reality check" with a new purse!  I found the right one, and yes, this is the true name Lucille Bag,, pattern by Abbey Lane Quilts.

Now one of my "reality checks" is how I use my time.  Number theme material was just too tempting and dots just added fun to keep my "reality check" motivation.

While I was on a roll of sewing I had to grab a fun print, which put a giggle in my heart.  My precious neighbor just started her chemo treatments, so cheering up was in order.  Isn't this cute?  Does it make you smile?  It made her smile and I pray it encourages her through her journey to healing.

While "reality check" can send a "ouch", it can also bring some very good results.   This week.....two purses!!

There are times to Make the Purse!

Be quiet, Mother's Day is coming...so off I go to sew some more purses.

special thanks from Kathryn @ The Writer's Revenie    what a fun give away I won...what a delightful blog, give her a visit, you will enjoy

Friday, April 20, 2012

My Way or the Highway

I was caught in my tracks, yes totally blindsided with convictions, as my mind had to choose between the right and the wrong way to handle the situation.  I heard the words, "My WAY or the Highway!" yelled in my head...the choice was mine.  "MY WAY"...wow!, that alone should be a clue of the arrogance in my own self-worth.

Our dryer bit-the-bullet.  Now why it decided to leave the family without proper provision for drying our clothes, after I had just given it a face lift (painted my dryer on my laundry re-do) I will never know.  Didn't it know what a pain it would be to not have its services and how removing my art work would mess up my decor?

So began our journey of "no dryer".  As my husband debated on if to fix or buy a used one...well he is more the Tim Allen type so buying a used one would be safer....he generously offered to take the clothes, after I had washed them, to the laundry mat, a couple of loads at a time.  Now in our household I am the house manager, even decades ago, with four children under age 7, home schooling and running my own business, I still remained the home manger doing all chores that pertained to the home and yard.  So it is a huge deal when my working husband offers to take on any of the list of chores.  I didn't even think twice about not taking him up on the offer....the sacrifice would be...he would be doing it his way.  His way is inexperienced and how he remembers his mom folded clothes....not how his wife has done laundry for 32 years, but a servant heart should not be discouraged.

As the baskets returned I had some choices to make

  • I could re-fold all the clothes to my liking...which meant extra work and voiced - "your way is not right"...now lets be honest, there isn't a "right" way and a "wrong" way of folding clothes, if the mission is complete than the method is right
  • I could reminded him that the way he is doing it is not my way, therefore discouraging his efforts, leaving him with the choice of getting mad or just not doing it
  • I could rejoice in the fact that I am not the one going down to the laundry mat...that folded clothes are better than unfolded wrinkled clothes...and this too would pass and I would be back at the task of laundry, by myself, when the dryer issue was resolved
This is when I caught myself hearing "MY WAY OR THE HIGHWAY".  I am happy to say the conviction penetrated deeply.  I rejoiced over the folded clothes...put them all way and remembered that "my way" isn't necessarily "right".

How many times have I discouraged my own children or husband by mentioning how they did it "wasn't right"?  That could have been verbally, or through my actions of re-doing their efforts, or even expressions of discontent.  As Benjamin learns to make his bed I remember my policy with my other children...let them learn at their skill level and don't re-do what they have done.  He so proudly makes his bed each morning...his skill level will improve and "his way is right"....mission accomplished, bed made.

May we encourage the "servant heart" in our families and stop looking to see if they did it "our way".   Who wants to help a "know it all...that can't be pleased"person..that produces  you standing there without a helping hand, ALONE to do it "your way".

Yes, I would put this post under "reality check"....there are more to come....seems I am in the shop for a tune-up.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Just Had To Join the Party

Okay I have never been successful in these linky parties...but it hasn't kept me from joining a party or two.  So today I just had to put on my party clothes, which are a little looser these days, and join in Vee's Note Card Party.

The Beauty of Spring

These butterflies were hatched in a jar last spring...these are Benjamin's Butterflies.

Spring shouts out "seasons of love" as we enjoy the blooming roses...this rose's reflects in my first gift from my would-be-husband, which I received at age 17.  The gift mirror reflects not only the rose, but also the mirror from my first and only, master bedroom dresser mirror.  Reflections of 32 years of marriage.

This time of year we see the power of God through the spring storms.  What beauty can be seen when we look to the sky.  Looking to His peace through, during and after the storms.

The Storms gave way to Beautiful Flowers.  This would have to be on a Note Card to promote TEXAS!  Photographer on the last two pics...my talented daughter, sissy, just has to catch her little brother through her lens.

Thanks Vee...this was fun!!

A Haven for Vee

Monday, April 16, 2012

Reality Check

These pictures have made me laugh over and over again, as I contemplate the message behind them...it is so rare to see ourselves in the true perspective.

yahoo image
 In some ways, this is a blessing as our mind tricks us and keeps us going.  As I stepped off the elliptical the other morning, sweat running down my red face and my shirt tie-died from sweat...I am glad my mind didn't "yell reality" while I was exercising.  I am also glad my mind tricks me when I am being silly with my kids and don't realize how I really look.

Yahoo image

The negative side causes "denial" which could delay or cancel the need for changes. Therefore, there is a need for a  "reality check" and allowing the Holy Spirit to reveal the true picture.  For some reason I feel this is where the Lord has me this year....stepping back to have a "reality check".  He is giving some practical ways to do this, along with quiet time for heart issues.

Oswald Chambers hit a "home run" in his devotional, The Failure to Pay Close Attention.

              "Are there some things regarding your physical or intellectual life to which you have
               been paying no attention at all?..........As you can't take off a day of morality and remain
               moral , neither can you take a day off spiritually and remain spiritual.  God wants you
               to be entirely His, and it requires paying close attention to keep yourself fit. It also
               takes a tremendous amount of time."

This time of year is known for "Spring Cleaning"....making this the right season to step back and take "a reality check", before the warning lights start to blink.
So far, the reality of being overweight became a "reality check" at my doctor's appointment in January, which challenged me to hit the gym... now for other areas in my life that needs "reality checks"...and post to show my progression or maybe "denial" while I put  back on "rose-colored-glasses".

Friday, April 13, 2012

Sunday School Teachers

Today is dedicated to my 6th Grade Sunday School Teacher.  She was the "spunkiest" woman I know.  She embodied life more than anyone I ever met.  She taught school and had hundreds of students.  Widowed in her 50's, she gave her life to serving children.  God didn't see to bless her with children from her own womb...but it didn't matter, since she was a teacher to so many of us...hundred's of students in school and church.  Even in her sixties, she dedicated her time to children like me on Sunday morning or chaperoned us at youth events.  We always welcomed her to our youth events, even if she was the age of our grandparents.  The Lord decided to take her home this week.  They found her in her rocking chair. 

I just know she was telling God a joke and He decided she could tell it in person. Since she always made an entrance, I am sure she came around the corner looking at Him and waving her finger with, "now couldn't you have given me a bigger exit?  A chariot of fire would have been great!"  What a joy!  She always had the best one-liners.

Nancy Straley - the young woman on the left

I had the wonderful blessing of seeing my 6th grade Sunday School teacher while attending a family's 50th Wedding Anniversary.  She was just as "spunky" as ever and bragging on her age of 90.   I was so excited all my children had the chance to meet her, but most of all I was so excited to show them to her.  I said, "can you believe they are all mine?"  She laughed and started telling tales on me.  She was there in my youth and there when I said "I do".  She painted us a picture as a wedding gift.  She had seen me grow up both physically and spiritually.  She had remained a dear family friend, making her way to my sister-in-law's Anniversary party... even if she needed a cane to assist her.

Many churches have done away with the "old type" of Sunday School....I am glad I had the wonderful spiritual instructions from a "traditional" Bible-teaching Sunday School.  So, today I say... Thanks for giving to the Lord...I am life that was changed.

His master replied, 'Well done, good and faithful servant! You have been faithful with a few things; I will put you in charge of many things. Come and share your master's happiness!' Matt 25;21

Welcome Home Nancy....enter into your master's happiness.

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Spunky Popcorn

I know, I know. You are thinking, what in the world is "spunky" popcorn?  Well since this is my year to find my "spunk," I am going to post anything that made me giggle inside with "spunk".  My Easter popcorn falls into that category.   It was just too much fun to make, too much fun to eat, too much fun to bag up and give to neighbors...and even delivering the bags was just "spunky".

Here is what I made...it was worth the effort.  Then Benjamin and I found some wonderful bags that summed up the occasion.  I watched Benjamin skip down the sidewalk to deliver bags, stopping at different points to get a new grip on his bag...I wasn't sure that Benjamin Bunny would get his delivery made.  After making deliveries we had one bag left....now whose was this bag?  I felt a little "spunk" coming on.

I grabbed Benjamin and we started running toward the car.  We jumped in and sped down our street to catch our "mail lady"!  Yes, we blocked her mail truck with our car as she to stared at the "crazy, spunky woman"  running at her. I put my head in the mail car door to announce I had brought her some popcorn and hoped she would enjoy it!!!

Isn't God Good?  He allows us to have fun while sharing His love for others.  My prayer is that our little bag of fun popcorn expressed His love through us!!

I hope you have a "spunky" popcorn!!!

Recipe for Kool-Aid Popcorn  (click on Kool-Aid Popcorn) - hint: bake the popcorn. The air drying makes it too sticky...sorry neighbors, who got a mixture of both....and I added the pastel M&M's

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Faith of a Child

Benjamin's Art Work

15 Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”  Mark 10:15

This Resurrection season brought the wonder of telling a young child the Greatest Story Ever Told...the Gospel.  Age six brought a new understanding as I walked my youngest to the empty tomb, fulfilling the plan of redemption started in the garden.

I don't have a theological degree.  I would look very ignorant in most spiritual debates, even those argued in blog world. However, I do have a relationship with Jesus Christ.  It is this 46-year-old relationship I share with my children.  

It never gets old to see God soften their hearts and their receiving the truth of His redemption plan.
Benjamin Made a Resurrection Set....he did the actions each day... from the cross to the grave to the resurrection.
Through my young child's eyes, I again am renewed by the resurrection story.

I have placed the truth before all my children...their relationship with or without Christ is theirs, I can't force mine on them.  I am just instructed to share the Gospel.

Benjamin set the table one evening with pieces from the story at each person's plate.  I took his hint and brought the idea again to our Easter lunch.  We all gathered around the table to recall the last week of our Savior, to partake of the Lord's Supper and to rejoice in His resurrection and the truth of His return.

May we never grow so old and so complicate the Gospel that we forget that Christ said we were to receive the kingdom like a little child.

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Tornadoes to Butterflies

yahoo, Texas Tornadoes 2012

Life is just a list of contrast and yesterday will go down in history for many of my neighbors.  As Benjamin and I were accomplishing our school lessons neighbors were running for cover.  Tornadoes hit our area.  When we finally heard they were coming toward us we went to hide in a half bath, while calmly reading books, we were in the safe zone.


All nine of our family members were all over the Metro-Plex and yet, none of us were affected by the tornadoes.

Today Benjamin and I rose to beautiful sun and a trip into Dallas to see butterflies.  As we drove I couldn't help but see the contrast of just a few hours.  Our trip would allow us to enjoy beautiful butterflies, while communities, within just miles from our field trip, debris was being cleaned up.  The calm weather came after the storm which sent trucks flying through the air just hours before.  It was easy not to realize what had happened just hours before in this city.  Even the smell of spring air didn't give a hit of what had occurred.

Life is such a contrast and at times your mind can't wrap itself around the feelings this contradiction evokes.  You are thankful, amazed, dazed, compassionate and sorrowful. You wonder why you didn't have to suffer the loss, while wondering what you can do for all those who did?  You also go on with life....a baseball games that was cancelled yesterday will now be played, while others start to put their lives back to a different "normal."  Wow! how just a couple of hours can change everything.

I bow my knees in prayer for all those affected by the April 3rd, 2012 Tornadoes in North Texas. Thanks to all of you who lifted us up in prayer.
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