Thursday, January 31, 2008

Happy Thursday!!! :D

Or it would be, if I could seem to get anything done. Why, oh WHY, can't I get my desk clean???? It's to the point where the only space cleared is right there in front of my keyboard! See it? That's IT. And if you look below, my stamping table isn't any better - although a lot of that will be taken care of before Kenn leaves today. Right, darling? :D

ANYWAY. Today is being spent trying to catch up even a little more. Kenn has to work tonight, so I have to run rehearsal. However, HE is having to do one of the main male roles, so we're going to have to skip over two scenes tonight. It's going to get MORE difficult, I'm afraid, because he's going to be working more the next few weeks. We've GOT to find someone to do this role! Anyone in the area know a middle-aged man who would love to act with us????

I really need to work on my Stampin' Up! business stuff today; my newsletter is scheduled to go out tomorrow, and I need to do my class schedule for February and maybe some of March. I just am not feeling like doing anything! :D

Here's my table. I guess I'm off to get busy - to uncover my calendar, which is on my desk, so I can plan those classes. :) I hope you're able to get motivated today, to do whatever you need to! May you be richly, abundantly blessed today!

Psalm 112:1-3

Praise the LORD.

Blessed is the man who fears the LORD,

who finds great delight in his commands.
His children will be mighty in the land;

the generation of the upright will be blessed.
Wealth and riches are in his house,

and his righteousness endures forever.

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Wash Day!

Wash Day
Lord, help me wash away all my selfishness and vanity, so I may serve you with perfect humility through the week ahead.

Ironing Day
Dear Lord, help me iron out all the wrinkles of prejudice I have collected through the years so that I may see the beauty in others.
Mending Day
O God, help me mend my ways so I will not set a bad example for others.

Cleaning Day

Lord Jesus, help me to dust out all the many faults I have been hiding in the secret corners of my heart.

Shopping Day

O God, give me the grace to shop wisely so I may purchase eternal happiness for myself and all others in need of love.

Cooking Day
Help me, my Savior, to brew a big kettle of brotherly love and serve it with clean, sweet bread of human kindness.

The Lord's Day
O God, I have prepared my house for you. Please come into my heart so I may spend the day and the rest of my life in your presence.

Normally, I'd be introducing someone...

but everyone I've asked is too busy to write an intro and send it to me. If you would like to be my guest, email your bio and pic to me at :) I'd love to have us get to know each other better!

Last night, a thin but vicious line of thunderstorms rolled through here. It was quite fierce for a while, during my teaching an advanced stamping techniques class. :) Thankfully, we were safe and warm in here - but I can't say the same for my mom's gazing ball. :( It had a crack in it to begin with, but the wind trying to play basketball with it didn't help. I did get her a new gazing ball last year, so I hope she's still got it in the box!

Today is absolutely beautiful; it's sunny, and clear, and the squirrels are playing in the back yard. I love watching them; my mom thinks they're gross. LOL! I just see some of God's creatures, put out there for me to enjoy!

It IS cold, though; look at poor little Willie, trying to get a drink! The heater IS in the water, but I think it's heating enough of the water to not stop the pump - the water's running back down BEHIND the ice on the pedestal! :) I wish I could have gotten the sunlight's reflection off the ice like I can see it from my desk; it's so pretty. I love ice in the sun!

Since y'all seem to like my pictures :D, I wanted to share another pic of our Christmas cactus. This is the offspring of Kenn's dad's cactus, which was too big to move back with us. Kenn's best friend, Lee, and his wife are "babysitting" it for us. :D

ANYWAY. This cactus started blooming just at Christmas, and is still going strong - so is my mom's darker pink one. They both have brand-new buds on them. If you click on the pictures, you can enjoy them all much bigger. :)
So. Today is a catch-up day for me. My desk is FILLED, and I need to clear it off. It hasn't stayed clean for longer than a day for the past three months. Kenn's cough is coming back, and giving him asthma attacks today. I'm looking forward to going back to choir tonight; I've not been able to sing since Christmas!
My heart is overflowing with gratitude to my Savior and Creator today. Such a beautiful world I get to enjoy! He loves me SO mcuh, He put the squirrels and the birds in my back yard, so I can sit here and share with you how much pleasure they give me. :) I'm resting securely in His love today.
What are YOU doing today? Are you super-busy? Tell you what. I'm praying today that god will open your eyes today - no matter where you are, or what you're doing - and He'll show you some little thing that He knows you love and enjoy that He's put into your world for you this day. Take the moment to FEEL His love, dear one! I can't WAIT to hear what He showed you!
Health Update: The retinal specialist was very happy with me yesterday. He was actually the most chatty and pleasant of ANY of my visits, even before he looked at me! :) He had his assistant take some photos of my eyes, so they have a baseline of how I'm doing. I don't have to go back until the end of May! :) I DID have a LONG wait - the visit and commute took more than three hours - but I survived. :D

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

You could WIN!!

A Cowboy’s Wife is having a contest on her food blog! You can win a Hamilton Beach® Stand Mixer and she’ll ship anywhere so everyone is eligible!
Enter to win at MyWoodenSpoonDOTcom
Go check it out!


OK, so I'm on my way out the door to a retinal specialist's appointment, and don't have a lot of time to post - so no pic right now. It's REALLY gloomy outside, anyway. :)

So, how are you doing on your goals? Judy? Nancy? Karen? Becky already emailed me - she's not feeling well, so prayers for her would be great! Check her blog for more details. Everyone else? I'll pull out my file when I get home, if I need to! :D

I'm about the same as last week! I'm a little behind on my reading still. Haven't been able to go to water aerobics because of the cough. :( My bag is packed and ready, though, for whenever this crud is GONE.

I'll try to post more later, but I also have to teach a class tonight that isn't prepped at all. AUGH!!!!! :D Have a wonderful day!

Monday, January 28, 2008


Good morning! How are you doing today??? Did you have a good weekend? What's going on in your world?
I'm still trying to get better! This cough is hanging on, and I had a super-long day on Saturday, so backslid a little bit yesterday as far as health goes. Oh, well. :) God is GOOD! He's on His throne, and He's in control!
So. What did YOU learn yesterday? In Sunday school, we talked about God's promises - first to Abram/Abraham, then the promises in the Bible that are aimed toward us. About His covenant with Himself to fulfill those promises, and about which one(s) meant most to us. I still think one of the best promises in the Bible is from Psalm 37:
3 Trust in the LORD and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
4 Delight yourself in the LORD
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
5 Commit your way to the LORD;
trust in him and he will do this:
You know what He's taught me about that passage over the years? That He will change the desires of my heart to fit His will for my life! If I'm committing my way to Him, delighting in Him, my desires will ALWAYS line up with His will! Pretty awesome. :)
Anyway. The sermon was about vision, and giving, and blessing. Do YOU have a hard time writing that tithe check when finances are SO difficult, you can't figure out where your insurance payment, or rent, or car payment are coming from? I will admit it: I do. God's working on me, and He's convicting me more every week. It's one area we really have trouble TRUSTING.
So. What did you learn? What are YOU thinking about? What's on your heart today?

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Happy Thursday! :D

I'm not sure why, but I really feel led to encourage you today: RUN THE RACE TO WIN THE PRIZE. Can you IMAGINE what Heaven will be like?? Here, try this - straight from the Throneroom!

Revelation 4
The Throne in Heaven

1After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, "Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this." 2At once I was in the Spirit, and there before me was a throne in heaven with someone sitting on it. 3And the one who sat there had the appearance of jasper and carnelian. A rainbow, resembling an emerald, encircled the throne. 4Surrounding the throne were twenty-four other thrones, and seated on them were twenty-four elders. They were dressed in white and had crowns of gold on their heads. 5From the throne came flashes of lightning, rumblings and peals of thunder. Before the throne, seven lamps were blazing. These are the seven spirits of God. 6Also before the throne there was what looked like a sea of glass, clear as crystal. In the center, around the throne, were four living creatures, and they were covered with eyes, in front and in back.

7The first living creature was like a lion, the second was like an ox, the third had a face like a man, the fourth was like a flying eagle. 8Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under his wings. Day and night they never stop saying: "Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty, who was, and is, and is to come."

9Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever, 10the twenty-four elders fall down before him who sits on the throne, and worship him who lives for ever and ever. They lay their crowns before the throne and say:

11"You are worthy, our Lord and God,

to receive glory and honor and power,

for you created all things,

and by your will they were created

and have their being."

How GLORIOUS will it be, my dear friend. I can't WAIT to give honor to my God and King, EVERY second of EVERY day forever and ever. I wish it were in me to do so with my frail, human body and perverted human-ness. I'm so, SO grateful to be FORGIVEN, and SET FREE. Because I'm forgiven, I can come into HIS HOLY PRESENCE. Have you thought about what that IS? If the reality of that scene to come really, REALLY hits you, you'll never be the same.

I'm praying for you, my dear friend. Praying that the holiness of God, and his imparted righteousness and holiness to YOU, will be revealed to you. May it bless you, humble you, encourage you, and lead you to show those around you how much that love, peace, and grace that have touched your life are flowing outward to them.

Talk to me! What are YOU thinking right now????

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Please Meet Rhonda!

Hi, everyone! Rhonda's not sure how to send me a pic, and I haven't seen her in person since my wedding 11.5 years ago. :) I'll try to find a picture of either her, or both of us, from our "way back when days" - Rhonda was one of my roomies in college. We have a very UNIQUE story about how we became friends, which perhaps we'll share sometimes. :D ANYWAY. I'm thrilled to introduce you to my friend!
UPDATE: This photo is from my wedding, obviously. :D Rhonda was my matron of honor.

Hi everyone!
I am Rhonda. I am 41 years young. At least, that’s what I keep telling myself.;) I figure if I tell myself I am young I might stay that way a little longer!!!

I have three children who can be blessings or burdens depending on the day! My oldest is Audrey who is 14yrs old. She had become my most responsible one. She has had to do a lot of growing up over the last 8 months and it is proving to be a very good thing! However, she can be a typical teenager complete with the attitude!!!

My second child cam shortly after her, 14 months after her!!
She is Amber and has 13 years behind her! She is my very quiet child, but when you’re not watching she can be quite loud! She and Audrey are as different as night and day in the things they like to do. Amber’s interests revolve around anything to do with the military!!!! The greener the better! Audrey is the Girly girl, no outside activities for her!!!!

Jeremy is my baby at 10 years old. Have you ever noticed exactly HOW different boys are from girls? I learn new lessons each and every day! He does keep me on my toes!! I am ever so glad that God gave him to me!

Our little family has had a very rough 8 months. Because of a situation that built up and basically exploded on Mother’s Day, the children and I had to move from our home in El Paso, TX. We moved to Alpine, TX in June, and then again to Big Bend National Park in August. God blessed me with a teaching position in a school set up for the park ranger’s children. It is a k-8 Texas Recognized school. We are VERY small a total of 27 students! I am teaching the Kindergarten and first grade class. This a chore for someone who has never taught either first or kindergarten!!! God has truly blessed me in more ways than I could even begin to tell you!
My children are much happier and are getting the educational attention that they need to have for their dyslexia.

The greatest trial for me is adjusting to not having ANY Christian friends near by to talk to. I do not attend a church because there isn’t one near where we live. It takes at least 45 minutes to get to the closest town!! (And that town doesn’t even have a Wal-mart, or a real grocery store! AAAAWWWWWW Is that ever a BIG adjustment!!!!)

There is a small bible study that meets on Sunday mornings and Tuesday nights. I am usually helping with the children on Sunday and it seems that on Tuesdays it is difficult to get there because of homework and everything else that goes on in a family!

My Greatest need right now is wisdom and direction in what to do concerning my husband. Yes, he stayed in El Paso. I am having some difficulty with him in some very important areas. I do not know what the next step should be. Please pray for me so that I will hear God clearly!

I am so very glad to be a part of this blog. I honestly look forward to it every morning!
I pray that God blesses each of you far beyond anything you could ever dream or imagine!

OK, ladies! :) Let's uplift Rhonda and the kids, now that you know specific needs.

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Tuesday is GOAL DAY!!!!

The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him,
and he delivers them.
Taste and see that the LORD is good;
blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.
Fear the LORD, you his saints,
for those who fear him lack nothing.
Psalm 34:7-9
Good afternoon, dear friends!!!! How are you doing today? I'm able to be up and around, thank God. He is GOOD all the time, but sometimes, I'll admit, I have a really hard time remembering that when I can't breathe from coughing. Kenn's going through it yet again, too - this is his THIRD time, and he's got asthma, so it's really difficult for him. Prayers for him would be SO appreciated!
OK, down to our GOALS. I'll confess. My golas fell by the wayside pretty much while I was sick, so I need to get back on the bandwagon and catch back up with my reading, especially. I did go to water aerobics a week ago today, and thoroughly enjoyed it, but I can't go tonight - the slightest exertion starts me coughing again. I AM planning on going on Thursday! I love my instructor, I love feeling like I've accomplished something - so I'm looking forward to CONTINUING that again. :)
So, I confessed. They say it's good for the soul. :D Who's next??? I've been printing them out as you send them to me! Sheri? Rhonda? Becky? Nancy? Let's see. Let me find my folder.... (I keep getting sidetracked! LOL!! TOO much to catch up on!!) Aha. Deby? Judy? Karen? Anyone I missed? :)
More health stuff: Well, got a phone call from my doctor's office last night. My A1c, which is the average of my glucose levels over the last three months, was a 7.0. This is MUCH better than I thought it was going to be (that averages to a 150 glucose reading average!), but of course it still needs to be lower. The thing that concerned them a bit is that my liver enzymes, which have been elevated since they started testing me, jumped some this last time. SO, I've stopped taking my cholesterol med for the next two weeks, and I'll have a liver ultrasound done when I go in for my next appointment on Feb. 6, to make sure nothing serious is going on with IT. I MEAN, when it rains, it pours. LOL! My glucose readings are awesome these days - of course, I really haven't felt like EATING much the past week.... :D But thank you SO VERY MUCH for all your prayers!!!!! Keep 'em coming, dear friends! :D
OK. That's it for me. This is a lot of typing for someone who should be resting. LOL!!!!
GOD BLESS YOU, dear one. He loves you, so very much. Be embraced by Him!!!!

Monday, January 21, 2008

ROFL! I won! :D

Can you believe I won an award?? Go check out the posting that describes it; too funny!! Here's my award! :D Thank you! :D


Hi, dear ones. I'm so sorry; this virus has REALLY been vicious this time. I didn't even get to go to church yesterday - so I'm REALLY looking forward to what you have to share. PLEASE, share! :)

Friday, January 18, 2008

Let me introduce Greg McDougal to you!

Hi, dear ones! This is our dear friend, Greg. I'll give you the short version, and you can go to his website to learn more details. :)
Three of his four beautiful children have been diagnosed with Cystic Fibrosis. Sean is having a tough time again; he's the younger boy, and has a really rough year or so. Please pray for them as you see fit - there are a LOT of challenges they face each and every moment of the day!
Greg and his wife, Diane, are building a clean house for their children. It's been a long time in happening, but I believe he's two signatures away from breaking ground! They are forming a non-profit organization to help families of challenged children be able to care for them at home.
Here is a video of one of his songs, What the Lord Gave Me to Do. It's a wonderful song, and will truly touch your heart. Greg's first CD, The Work of a Carpenter, is a wonderful CD, and you can order it from his website. His NEXT CD is going to be incredible - I've heard a couple of the rough cuts from it, and you're not going to want to miss either the opportunity to help this family OR the great music on it! :)
I hope you'll go check out both the video and Greg's website. Let me know what you think! :) And GOD BLESS YOU for caring!

Thursday, January 17, 2008

Nancy, this is the sharing about God's LOVE I mentioned two weeks ago. :D

Hello, dear friend. I'm still not feeling too great, but God's GOOD! :)
I mentioned being scared of asking my Father for ANYTHING - well, in this excerpt that was in my study Bible, Max sure threw some light on why I feel this way! I can't wait to hear YOUR take on it....
AUGH!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I *knew* I should have marked it! I've spent two hours looking for it, and still can't find it. I'll keep looking, but I want to give you the gist of the excerpt.
Max's wife had been away, and he was in charge of the girls for the time. If they had been good, the family was going to do something special. They went to the airport to pick her up; when she asked if the children had been good, he said yes.
The oldest piped up from the back seat, and told her daddy he was wrong; they'd done this and this and this bad, so they shouldn't get to go.
Daddy had forgiven the little trespasses. But we don't expect OUR Daddy to do that, do we. We keep track of the things we do wrong, and say, "How can You love me, God? See how filthy and dirty I am?" But HE says, "I've forgiven that. You're washed in the blood. Quit bringing it back up, dear one. It is DONE."

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Now I'm ready to share specific prayer needs!

Rather appropriate verse for me today. :) Let me explain.
As a reader of this blog, you know I've really been struggling with my glucose levels. Well, today was my diabetes specialist 3-month appointment. Well, we both put stuff out on the line, and what's been happening is glycemic toxicity. That's where my body has too much insulin in it, because I've been putting more in - but my body is also extremely insulin-resistant, so my glucose level is too high. It's a vicious cycle, and one that I have to try to stop.
She wants me to eat 90 grams of carbs a day - which is easy, because that's about what I eat already. The hard part is WHEN.
So, starting tomorrow, I HAVE to eat a bigger breakfast, which I really, REALLY hate. And I can't eat after 6 pm. THAT will be true torture!!!!!
I go back in three weeks, to see how things are going. It's my fasting sugars that are really out of control, and when I get stressed, forget it.
Next week is my check-up with my retinal specialist. He's not going to be happy, but I'm doing what I can. Please pray that this works to get me out of this awful loop!
I've also got the respiratory crud again, which HURTS. Kenn is in a depression; he's not feeling very well, AND his jobs have fallen off - so we're hurting. With co-pays for expensive COBRA for meds and doctors appointments and the monthly payments, I'm EXPENSIVE.
OK. :) I'm done. Thank you for praying, dear friends. I can't tell you how much I appreciate knowing you're there!


Good morning, dear ones! I haven't heard much from a lot of you recently - thank you, those of you who faithfully report in. :)
Today, my dear friend, Becky P., is introducing herself to you. She's a dear friend, and I know you'll enjoy getting to know her.
Hi friends,

I am Becky. A 34 year old SAHM to two girls. Hannah, a 6 year old girlygirl princess/drama queen & an 11 year old "anything BUT girlygirl", Heather. I have been married to Ron for almost 15 years and we live in East Tennessee.

In the summers we are usually out camping, hiking and fishing. Either that or at the pool. ANYTHING to keep the girls from going stir crazy.

My husband is a fur trapper and I participate with him in all of the trap meets acting right now as Lady Fur Harvestor Vice President. I also make handcrafted accessories out of the fur that he catches & Lady Fur Harvestor of the Year.

Besides my family, my true passion is paper crafting. I looove making cards and scrapbooking and love the friends that I have made because of it.

I love to read, I love to send and receive letters (yes, real snail mail ones) and I love movies.

It was only recently that I was able to quit my job as the Marketing Director for Realty Executives (Knoxville) and stay home with the girls. Now that both are in school, I find myself struggling with time management issues. I can ticktock an entire day away sitting in here at my desk...either plunking on the puter or stamping.

I have 3 fur ferocious beagle/bassett...Cyris (yes that is pronounced like Billy Ray)...who spends his days chasing squirrels and barking at leaves. The only way he might hurt you is if he ran over you...which he has proven is quite effective. I have Jenny...shes my old lady cat. Other than napping & eating she doesnt do much these days. And then there is Twinkle. Twink is my partner in crime. She and I hang out all day. Usually she in the middle of whatever I am working on or into SOMETHING. I have sooo enjoyed having a kitten all over again. She completely cracks me up!

Right now we are in between churches. It drives me batty. Whodathunk that living in the Bible Girdle of America wed have such a hard time findign a church to suit us? When we ARE a part of a church...I do get very active there. I am of course a Christian and do my very bestest to live by Jesus.

So right now...I am struggling most with self discipline and managment. I was recently told by the doctor that I needed to go to a low carb diet. My blood work came back waaay unlevel. That means no whites. No flour, no refined sugars, no potatoes, no no no--I struggle DAILY. I am a huge sweet eater and love bread. So I think Id seriously consider giving up an arm or a leg to be able to eat those. But in any case..not possible.

I also struggle with my husband. No...not in the way that most would think. Hes a wonderful husband. But he struggles with Bi-Polar, ADD and is also out of shape and in serious need of a lifestyle change. He balks at the thought of taking better care of himself and is constantly going to the doctor for that "magic pill". He has a bigger self discipline issue than I do.

So there you have it. I am a happy little person sittin at home lookin for a direction. Trying to listen to where and what I am supposed to be doing with myself.
Please take a moment to thank Becky, to visit her website, and to pray for her specific needs. :)
Have a WONDERFUL day, dear one. GOD LOVES YOU, so much. May you feel His presence today, holding you close.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Good morning, everyone! I thought I'd share a picture of Kenn today. :D Isn't he cute? He doesn't know I took this, nor does he realize I'm sharing with you - so be nice. :D
Today is the day we share how we're doing reaching our goals. I'm faltering a bit - but how was I to know that not one, but TWO days last week, water aerobics would be called because of TORNADO WATCHES in JANUARY?!?!??! Sheesh.
I AM going to go this afternoon, however. I've already told Kenn, my bag is still packed, it's beautiful, sunny and COLD outside - so there SHOULDN'T be any weather issues. Please, God???
Bible reading: I'm doing well there. I'm reading from the Message Bible, so it's really easy to read. That's certainly helping!
Office hours: have gone out the window. With this directing thing, and wanting to spend time with my family, it's getting a bit silly. I DO need to get creative for this weekend, however, and for next week - workshops and classes - so will plan to do that later this week.
OK. YOUR turn. :) Tell me how you're doing!!!!!!! Let's TALK!!! ;)

Monday, January 14, 2008

Monday - Share What You Learned At Church!!!

On the last and greatest day of the Feast, Jesus stood and said in a loud voice, "If anyone is thirsty, let him come to me and drink. Whoever believes in me, as the Scripture has said, streams of living water will flow from within him." By this he meant the Spirit, whom those who believed in him were later to receive. Up to that time the Spirit had not been given, since Jesus had not yet been glorified. ~John 7:37-39

Hello, dear reader!!! I know it's been a couple of days since you've "heard" from me. I do apologize, but life has a way of doing that to me sometimes. :)

Monday is SHARE WHAT YOU LEARNED AT CHURCH day. I can't WAIT to hear what God spoke to your heart!!!!!! If you want to share the sermon's points and Scripture, that's awesome - but please make sure that you share what God placed in your heart from the sermon, too! :)

Yesterday's sermon was on marriage and mates. On waiting on God's best, on His wanting to give you the desires of your heart. Pastor Lane talked about the differences in the ways men and women think, and their emotions and needs being different. He summed up his sermon with these four questions we should ask ourselves:

  1. What do you like about your marriage?
  2. What do you DISLIKE about your marriage?
  3. What would you change about your mate?
  4. What would you be willing to change about yourself?

Aha! GOOD, thought-provoking questions, don't you think? And am I the ONLY woman whose answers would depend on what day you asked me them????? Seriously. There are some days when I KNOW I'm the most blessed woman on the planet, and other days when, well...!

I'm PLANNING on being able to really share with you tomorrow, barring unforseen circumstances. We were gone for twelve solid hours yesterday, and I've been gone most of the day today - and have to leave for auditions again in just over an hour - so I need to get a couple more things accomplished before I go. PHEW. :)

Please share with me! What did YOU get touched by yesterday? How are YOU doing??????

Don't forget! Tomorrow is HOW I AM DOING WITH MY GOALS day! :)

God BLESS you, dear reader. May His living water bathe your heart, and come bubbling forth from you!

Friday, January 11, 2008

Show & Tell Friday!

Hi! It's Show & Tell Friday, sponsored by Kelli Winn! Go check out her beautiful pages - after you've read MY story. :D
This is my friend, Mr. Turkey. I absolutely love him, and everyone who comes over while he's out - most of the fall - comments on him. :)
Kenn & I went through Metammorah, Indiana, during Canal Days about four years ago, and Canal Days are a lot of fun if you're a shopper. :D The "turkey parts" were in one of the crafter's booths, and I just fell in love with him. So, we got him.
Every year, we go shopping JUST for that special pumpkin to bring Mr. Turkey to life. He usually sits on the corner of the kitchen counter, but this year he had a place of honor at the Thanksgiving table. :)
I hope Mr. Turkey made you smile. For me, it's those yearly traditions that make life special!

Did you miss me???

Lori P. contacted me to make sure I was OK. :) Thanks, Lori! I appreciate your concern.
But I'm fine. I have been SUPER-busy the past two days. After the men finished the flooring in my bedroom, Mom and I painted - and then Kenn & I rushed off to meet up with some friends who are in town from Oregon.
Yesterday was spent putting everything back in the bedroom, trying out new furniture positions, etc. And finishing sorting my clothing - I got rid of about half of what I had! - and organizing my closet again. Phew. Was I ever tired!!!!!!
Then last night, we had a general membership meeting for the theater company we do a lot of work with. Kenn and I are co-directing the next show, OUR TOWN, and tryouts are this Sunday & Monday - so it was important that we were there. We got to see our budget, and you can pray that this show is as successful as it has potential to be; the theater company needs to have a good turnout, or we'll be in trouble financially. Kenn & I have already done something to make it a little easier for the show to turn a profit, and we've sent out audition notices to about 200 people ourselves, so we're really trying. It's going to keep us busy for a while, that's for sure!!!
Anyway. I'm here! :) Yes, the diabetes thing is still up and down, but I'm still plugging away. I have a specialist appointment this coming week, and I'm going to discuss some changes, for SURE. :) (The photo is sugar-free pudding. Don't you just love creamy chocolate anything? LOL!)
Today is SHOW & TELL FRIDAY, so I'll be thinking about what I want to share and do so later.
Right now, I want to start a discussion about GRACE.
What is your personal definition of grace? Not some platitude you heard from someone else, but how YOU define it. Go ahead, think about it.
Ready? Have you defined it for yourself? I'm still thinking....
Grace is OFFICIALLY defined as "unmerited favor". But what does that MEAN?
God's grace is incredible, ladies. I'm sure you've seen this:
The infinite, perfect, all-knowing, all-seeing God of the universe loves ME. He loves me enough that He sacrificed His perfect Son as a blood sacrifice for me. Because He loves me, He FORGIVES me. He has allowed me to be covered in that blood, so He sees me as able to come into His presence. I'm FORGIVEN, SANCTIFIED, and BEING MADE HOLY because of His grace. I could NEVER earn His favor. He GIVES it to me.
SUCH a hard concept to understand for a lot of us!!!! I'll be talking more about GRACE in the next few days; I think it's an important concept to at least try to understand - not only God's grace to us, but our responsibility to extend grace to others. And to be brutally frank about why we have a hard time both accepting and extending grace.
So, let's discuss! :) What's YOUR definition of grace? Do you have a hard time accepting grace - or is it something that you never really think about?

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Wednesday: Introduction Day!

Good morning, dear friend! Today's an easy day for me; I'm going to let Karen - aka Karna - tell you about herself.

I am Karen, old blonde woman going on Medicare this year WAAA WAAAA - it is hard to think I will be 65 years old next month. I feel like I'm 19 except when I go to get up off my sofa and the bones creak a bit or the body wants to stay in that position and not jump right up. I had two children, and two grandchildren. I was married for 35 years and divorced in wow thats 9 years already.
Our family was fractured and blown apart in 1997 when my daughter accused my husband of molesting our granddaughter. That's like a time bomb going off and you hadn't read the book on how to survive.
So its been a long 10 years and a sad journey to say the least. In the midst of it all my son was diagnosed with MS - his wife left with their baby, and I was asked to come and be his caregiver. It was my joy and we spent 5 years together - he was brave and wonderful and passed away in June of 1996. He is safe with Jesus and I am left sad and lonely without him in my life. They say the second year after a loss is worse than the first one and I think I can attest to that.
Meanwhile I am remodeling his home and need to sell it pronto - of course I always buy in a high market and sell in a low, but this tops the cake right now -- couldn't be a worse time. I am just trying to trust the Lord to have a buyer out there so that it can be sold and I can pay my bills and move on.
Guess I'll stop cuz I could write a book - I have dreams and aspirations and know that the year 2008 (the #8 signifies 'new beginnings') will bring new journeys, lessons, and joy during the midst of all!
Thanks SO much, Karen! Ladies, let's lift Karen's needs, desires, and praises to God!!!

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Glucose update. :)

Hi, ladies. My new dear friend, Nancy, is praying diligently for my glucose readings, and keeps asking me how I'm doing. :D I'm glad you care!
This is my "lifeline", my meter.
It's a vampire! The biggest problem is the cost of the strips for this puppy - I'm not testing as often this week as I should, because I'm running low on funds. However, I am trying to watch it!
My readings have been really, really high lately. I've been stressed, and that NEVER does well for me. This morning, my fasting reading was still high, but lower than it has been every other morning for a week. I just tested, right after I took this picture: it's PERFECT right now, even though I feel INCREDIBLY stressed. So PLEASE keep the prayers coming!
As far as my eyesight goes, I have another check with my retinal specialist the end of this month. My left eye continues to have "episodes", and I'm in the middle of one now. I don't say anything around the house about it, because there's no reason to worry anyone. It's just something I'm going to have to live with. :)
Thank you for caring, ladies. I hope you're having a wonderful day!

Tuesday is Goal-Check Day!!!

It's that dreaded time of the week, ladies. :D It's time for us to 'fess up about how we're doing with the goals we've set ourselves. I'll go first, then ask those of you who sent me your goals some questions!
OK. First goal: reading the Bible in chronological order. I was up with my schedule until last night; my room threw up into the rest of the house while they're doing the floors :D, so I'm not quite sure where the Bible I'm using and my schedule got off to. It's on my list of things to find today. :D
Second goal: doing water aerobics twice a week, starting this week. Tonight is the class I attend, and Kenn knows I'm going, and I know I'm going, and my bag is all packed and ready to grab. :) I'm half dreading it, half looking forward to it. My endurance is way down, and it's amazing how much my carpal-tunnel hurts when working with water weights. But I love the water! :D I love being so much lighter in the water. LOL!
Third goal: setting office hours and keeping them. OK, not so good. I was on a conference call last night about balance in life - and I used to teach this stuff, too! :D - but the one thing he said was multi-tasking is a popular buzz word, but not an effective way of getting ANYTHING done. So, I'm going to stop multi-tasking, especially when I'm on the computer, and that should help me get much closer to this goal. I am doing better at keeping things separated. Another thing that came out of this call was: if I don't have separations and boundaries I'm willing to adhere to, why should I expect anyone else to adhere to them?
OK, I'm done. :D Now, then. Let me pull out my file! :) OK.
Deby. You're first. :D How are YOU doing? I know ou're reading. How about your organization? your WW?
Nancy! :) How are YOU doing? What steps toward your goals have you been able to take in the last week?
Judy? How's the exercise going? Still keeping on with it?
BECKY!! :D How are you doing with your billion goals? :D I know you're stamping and scrapping like you wanted to, and doing really well on your keeping your house straight. :) I know you didn't go to church Sunday because you hurt your leg. Plans for Wednesday night? How are you doing with your other goals?
Karen. :) How are those steps toward your accomplished goals going? Are you journaling? How's the Bible reading going? The rest of them? :)
Anyone else jumping on this bandwagon? :) It's never too late to set a goal for yourself. I'll be glad to help, if that's what you need. And we're ALL holding each other accountable.
The picture is from this morning; it's the wind chimes outside our back deck. It's REALLY warm here this morning; the weather front is moving in, so it's going to get stormy, but it's just silly when you go outside at 8:30 in the morning and it's as warm OUTSIDE as it is INSIDE, in JANUARY. AUGH!!!!!
:) OK. Time to move on to another task. I hope you're having a WONDERFUL day, my dear friend. I am blessed beyond measure by you!!!! Take this verse today, and take a moment to obey:
Psalm 46:10-11
Be still, and know that I am God: I will be exalted among the heathen, I will be exalted in the earth.
The LORD of hosts is with us; the God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah.

Monday, January 7, 2008

It's MONDAY! Share what you learned at church!

Hello, dear friend. How are you doing today? Did you have a good weekend? I did, but BOY, was it BUSY!! I was SO tired last night, I was in bed asleep by 10. HIGHLY unusual for me, but it sure felt good. :D
So, what was YOUR sermon about yesterday - or, if you'd prefer, what did you learn in Sunday school? Sometimes, God touches us more strongly about a topic in one lesson than He does the other. :)
Ours was about VISION yesterday. It was about God writing down what He says He's going to do, and about our writing down what He tells us He's going to do, or wants us to do. Sounds a LOT like goal-setting, doesn't it? :D Our pastor also said this: "Write down what you'd like to have happen in your life as if NOTHING COULD STOP YOU. Then, see what God does."
Wow. What a challenge - to actually BELIEVE God would do that for me, fulfill my DREAMS? That, actually, is a scary thought to me. I'll talk more about that later on, in another post. I want to get this one out, so you can start sharing, too!!! :)
Thank you for all your prayers, ladies. Please continue to pray for my blood glucose control, and my eyesight. :)
Have a WONDERFUL day - I can't WAIT to hear what God had to say to YOU yesterday!

Saturday, January 5, 2008

I'm blessed beyond measure!

This is one view of my stamping/crafting room in our house. If you are just getting to know me :), you don't know that we share a house with my parents. They are some of the most Godly people I've ever been around, and I am SO grateful for all their generosity, their guidance, and their friendship!

Part of their generosity is this room. It was given over to me for my business pretty much almost two years ago, but last May, while Kenn and I were in Oregon (my favorite place in the world!) for my stepdaughter's wedding, our contracter - another story you'll learn about, Greg McDougal - came and put in cabinets and the counter, according to plans Dad and I had decided on. I LOVE MY SPACE. It is an inviting, airy, WORKING room.

If you are a primary reader of my other blog, then you're well aware that I hold lots of classes and workshops/parties in this room. :) Today was the first of the new year - and it was more successful than any of its type that I've ever had. God truly blessed me today, and this room was FULL - almost to the point of not being able to move! - of women who love to stamp, of women who I consider some of my best friends. I was blessed to see them, and blessed by their business today. I am favored by my Father!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Trials and tribulations come with breathing. :) GOD IS GOOD. That is a PERIOD, ladies. :) Regardless of my circumstances, He IS. He is GOOD, and He LOVES ME. And HE LOVES YOU. What an awesome, mighty, grace-defining, merciful, loving God we serve!

I'm about done in, ladies. :) LONG day today, short night last night and this, so I'm going to bed. Actually, I think I'll take a bubble bath - one of my all-time favorite things to do. LOL!!!!

Have a wonderful, blessed Sunday. Don't forget to listen closely - Monday will be "What I heard at church" day! :D

And remember: YOU ARE LOVED!

Friday, January 4, 2008

Show & Tell Friday!

Hi, everyone! :) I'm trying to participate in Kelli Winn's "Show & Tell Fridays", and today was a BIT crazy - but I wanted to share this with you, anyway. :)
Have you ever heard of Namibia???? I hadn't, until I joined an online stamping list for people who also like teddy bears. Lucille is on my list, and she was my secret bear pal for Christmas this year. She sent me this beautiful bag, FULL of fun stamping and scrapping materials; the graphics are different on the other side.
Africa keeps playing a part in my life! :) My aunt and uncle were missionaries in Africa, and I currently have a cousin and her family there as missionaries. It's a BIG continent; I hope you'll click on the link - here it is again :D - to go find out about this country.
Anyway. I will treasure this tote bag; it's got a place of honor in my tote bag stash, waiting for the right thing to carry in it. :D And you're LITERALLY the first people to see it; no one in my household has, yet! :D

Trying to relax....

In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.
May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD,
even as we put our hope in you.
--Psalm 33:21-22
Wow. What a week of trials. If you're a regular, or if you're passing thru and feel like it, I'd sure appreciate some prayer support! I honestly believe God's using this blog for His work, and Satan doesn't like it. It's kind of obvious! :) I'm trusting that He 's going to take care of everyting, but it sure doesn't do my glucose levels any good! :) I'm trying to be like my favorite polar bear, here, and just kick back and rest in Him. Prayer's still a good thing.... ;D

How are you doing today? What's God been saying to you this week? I'm so glad you've come into my life! He's been showing me that He wants to use me - ONLINE!!!! It's amazing to me - I've been seeking my niche at church, and really haven't found anything that's ME. I do lots of things there, trust me, but my heart is for women who need encouragement and support, and this blog has allowed me to be in touch with lots of you who do - and who return the blessing. :D THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!! I cannot WAIT to see what God has in store for all of us as we walk this road together. :)
Kenn and I are double-dating with our dear friends Angela and Chris tonight; we're going to see Johnny Depp in SWEENY TODD and then out to dinner. (We go for MONTHS and don't get to go out, and this week we'll have been to two movies! :D) Tomorrow, Mom and I are going to the Goodwill half-price sale in the early morning, then my open house for my Stampin' Up!® business is from 10 - 12, then I have a birthday party to attend, and Sunday is Sunday school and church and a baby shower I'm in charge of. PHEW. It's going to be a busy weekend!! Either tomorrow or Monday will start the flooring project in MY BEDROOM, which will be the very last of the projects for this time. I'll be SO GLAD to have my peace & quiet back again! :)
What are you doing this weekend? Tell you what. Let's make Mondays "What I learned at church" days. Tuesdays will be "How I'm doing on my goals" days. Wednesdays will be "Introduction days" - those of you who don't mind will send me a picture and a "bio", so we can get to know each other better. I've already got one for this coming week - you'll be meeting my dear friend, Karen. :) I can't wait! Then we'll see how the rest of the days shape up! :)
Have a wonderful day, dear one. Know God LOVES you, and HE IS GOOD - no matter what circumstances around you are. :) (Can you tell I'm preaching to myself, here???) I MAY post one more time today, to do a Show & Tell. :) ENJOY YOUR WEEKEND!!!!! I'll post as I'm able....

Thursday, January 3, 2008

See? I told you I'd be back!

This is Maggie. Isn't she beautiful? She's the reason I didn't have time earlier to blog. Maggie just turned 1, and this is one of her "I'm ONE!" photos. We took a LOT, but I just LOVED the look on her face in this one. You know what she did right after she looked at me like this? She turned around, pulled that coupon out of the top of the magazine, and took a bite of it. I was the ONLY one watching her, and she was checking to see if I was going to stop her from doing something she suspected wasn't proper. :D

Just a QUICK thought here - don't we do the same thing with God often???

OK. :) On to what I really want to talk about today: the movie we saw. The four of us went to see THE GREAT DEBATERS, with Denzel Washington in the lead role. WOW, what a powerful movie - and a powerful performance. I truly enjoyed it; it was about a black college's tiny debate team in the 1930s, and the racial tension they had to overcome. This is the kind of role Denzel should do more often, in my opinion - uplifting, challenging one's thinking and moral stand. He not only starred in it, he directed it - BRAVO, Denzel!! The movie did an incredible job of making you FEEL that racial tension, not SEEING the actual violence for the most part, but seeing the aftermath of it.

I applaud this movie on two fronts. First, as a person who passionately loves words, and the use of them - my degree's in communications, minor in English lit :D - I say BRAVO for a movie that shows the POWER of the spoken word to change opinions, challenge viewpoints, and alter people's lives for the better.

Second, this movie was about more than just racial injustice. It was about the act of civil disobedience. I won't tell you my second absolutely favorite scene of the movie, because it's the highpoint of the movie :D, but I'm HIGHLY recommending this movie for anyone who's not afraid to THINK! :) STRONG support for all thought in the movie, and not just secular support - Wiley College is a Methodist college!

If you go see it, let me know what you think. I'd be very interested!

Goal check! MammyT and Judy have checked in with me this week. Becky? Deby? Let's see. My goals so far: I'm up-to-date with my reading, I've got my Y bag all ready to go Tuesday morning, and I'm being able to spend more time with my family and friends this week already. Of course, that's also partly because I haven't been able to get creative in my studio, but.... :D I think so far, so good!

Gosh, I could go on and on!!!! Girls, do you want me to keep questions about your individual goals between you and me, or post here?

Most of you don't know me before this blog, really, which is great - I'm SO glad God's brought new friends into my life! - but one of the things Kenn and I do is an *almost*-daily devotional "thought for the day". I'm posting today's picture here, but I really want to invite you to email me or leave me a comment and let me know that you'd like to receive the emails we send. I'll put you on the list, and then you can take yourself off it any time you decide! I just feel like it would bless you - God speaks through others a lot, and what we do is take photos of His creation, and allow those photos and His Word - and, most of the time, a hint or two from us :D - to speak to you. Just let me know! :)
OK. I'm going to go put on my PJs. It's been a long day, and I have lots of work to do. :) THANK YOU for reading my book today. LOL!!! I'm SO enjoying sharing with you!

Just a quickie for today! :D

Of course, I MAY be back later today to talk your ear off! LOL!
It's been a busy day already today, and we're on our way to the movies with my parents. I'm still waiting for some of you to send me your goals.... :)
I've got to run - we had a photo shoot this morning, so that's why I'm out of time. Enjoy this B&W of our dogwood tree, and I'll be back later! Have a BLESSED day!

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Just a little on goal-setting!

Hi, ladies! I want you to know that I read each and every email you send, every comment, and I take your concerns seriously.

Some of you are serious about being accountable with at least me concerning your goals for this year. I applaud you and your efforts!!! Thank you so much for asking me already if I've been doing what I've set out to so far. :) It will be MY turn to do so shortly.... ;D

One thing I want to cover with you is goal-setting. I used to get paid to teach this kind of stuff, so I hope you'll take what you can from what I have to share. :)

Remember when I said I didn't like "resolutions"? Well, one reason is because a resolution usually doesn't have a PLAN attached. Most people say, "This year, I'm going to lose weight" - but that resolution falls by the wayside quickly, because there's no ultimate goal, and no plan to get there! Try this instead: "By December 31, I will have lost 50 pounds. This means I need to lose and average of 4.25 pounds a month, and I'm going to do it by ________________ (Weight Watchers, excercise, etc.)."

Do you see what I'm saying? You have something to shoot for with the second statement. It's measurable AND attainable! By breaking it down into the second sentence, you've got a plan to go with your goal - and you can also break it down further! That's an average of less than a pound a week! Whatever will motivate you the most is what you need to keep in your mind. :)

The reason we NEED to set goals? Usually because we have to change a mindset we've had for a while, or because the goal means adding/subtracting a behavior/activity we really don't WANT to do, but realize it needs to be done. That's usually the Spirit prompting you, ladies! :)

I'm praying Psalm 20:4-5 for you:
May he give you the desire of your heart and make all your plans succeed.
We will shout for joy when you are victorious and will lift up our banners in the name of our God. May the LORD grant all your requests.

If I can help, please let me know. :) That's what I'm here for! (The cactus flower is in bloom on the sun porch right now. :) I just wanted to share!)

Good morning!

God is SO good!!! I love snow, and I've been thrilled to watch the snow flurries that have hit the Nashville area late yesterday and this morning. Nothing's sticking, but it's definitely chilly! :D As you can see by our backyard fountain - now THAT'S a tall, COLD drink of water! :D God knew how much it would please me to get to see the snow. JUST as I started blogging, it started again. Just a few flakes drifting gently down, but enough to absolutely bless me! Thanks, Abba!
How are YOU doing today? I'm looking forward to today; my best friend here, Amy, and I are going to get to spend some time together - AND we're meeting another friend for lunch. Girls' day just doesn't happen often, so I can't wait! :)
Yesterday was a little scary. My blood sugar rose SO HIGH that I was afraid I'd have to get Kenn to take me to the ER. It was starting to come down when I went to bed, however, and I prayed hard and believed that God would take care of it. When I got up to - well, why else do we wake up in the middle of the night and stumble into another room, hmmm?? :D - it was down to normal. PRAISE HIM FROM WHOM ALL BLESSINGS FLOW! It's not a nice feeling to have that happen, and you can't control anything!
You know what brought me to Him? All I could hear when I closed my eyes was, "Holy, Holy, Holy, is the LORD GOD ALMIGHTY, Who was, and is, and is to come!" If HE isn't able to take care of me, who CAN?????
Well, Amy should be here any time, so I'm going to cut it short. :) I MAY talk again later today; I've been SO blessed by the comments y'all are leaving/emailing me. Thank you!
God bless you, dear sister! Have a WONDERFUL day - be sure to look for the ways YOUR Abba is telling you He loves you!

Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Happy New Year!

How did you celebrate last night? I don't want to talk about it - but we've already made plans about what we want to do for New Year's Eve 2008. :D

Don't you love this photo? I leaned out the window of our sun porch to take it. This beautiful reminder of God's love was right around the corner - I just had to look for it. Today, for instance. It's MUCH colder than it's been in the past few days, but it is BEAUTIFUL - the sun is shining, the fountain is bubbling merrily away, the squirrels are playing in the back yard. What a glorious start to the new year!

Well, today starts those "resolutions". I don't believe in them - they're not goals with deadlines, so there isn't a reason to stick with them! :) So, I've got goals for this year.

First, I'm joining with some dear friends in reading thru the Bible in chronological order. I've printed off the whole year, so I can tick them off daily. I am COMMITTED to doing this; I need to, but I haven't had anyone to hold me accountable in the past few years - so I start, then stop, and no one knows or cares. I expect YOU to hold me to it! :)

Next, I am going to make sure my time is used more wisely. I am setting up "office hours" for the photography business, so both my husband and I know when I'm supposed to be working on things for it. I'll be setting up studio time for stamping and creating, and office time for my other businesses, too. I want to get on a schedule, so I don't feel like I'm at everyone's beck and call 24/7. I need to take care of me, too!

And as my last "share" for the day, I am going to get back to going to the Y. As part of taking care of myself, I need to give my body all the tools I can for using insulin and glucose the way it's supposed to! So, I pledge to start going to the Y at least twice a week starting next week, to do my water aerobics. I enjoy them when I'm there, but it's GETTING there that can be difficult! :)

So. Do YOU want to share your goals for this year? It will help to have someone hold you accountable, I promise! Feel free to share whatever you'd like in a comment - or email me privately at Let's work TOGETHER! :)

Have a wonderful day, dear friend. Look for the little piece of beauty God put there for you to find!