Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Being careful in our judgements!

   Sunday my husband was asked to give a lesson on Judging Others, he did such an incredible job, I thought that is what I would share with you tonight. Maybe I should let him write my blog, he has such a way with words...but it takes him a long time to write them so...guess you are still stuck with me!
Good night dear friends!

   "My wife, Lynn, and I recently returned from a trip to Rexburg, Idaho where we attended the graduation ceremonies of our son and daughter-in-law from BYU-I.  On the flight home I was reminded of a story:

The Cookie Thief
A woman was waiting at the airport one night,
With several long hours before her flight.
She hunted for a book in the airport shop,
Bought a bag of cookies and found a place to drop.
She was engrossed in her book, but happened to see,
That the man beside her, as bold as could be,
Grabbed a cookie or two from the bag between,
Which she tried to ignore to avoid a scene.
She read, munched cookie, and watched the clock,
As the gutsy “cookie thief” diminished her stock.
She was getting more irritated as the minutes ticked by,
Thinking, “If I wasn’t so nice, I’d blacken his eye!”
With each cookie she took, he took one too.
When only one was left, she wondered what he’d do.
With a smile on his face and a nervous laugh,
He took the last cookie and broke it in half.
He offered her half, and he ate the other.
She snatched it from him and thought, “Oh brother,
This guy has some nerve, and he’s also so rude,
Why, he didn’t even show any gratitude!”
She had never known when she had been so galled,
And sighed with relief when her flight was called.
She gathered her belongings and headed for the gate,
Refusing to look at the “thieving ingrate”.
She boarded the plane and sank in her seat,
Then sought her book, which was almost complete.
As she reached in her baggage, she gasped with surprise.
There were her bag of cookies in front of her eyes!
“If mine are here,” she moaned with despair,
“Then the others were his and he tried to share!”
Too late to apologize, she realized with grief,
That she was the rude one, the ingrate, the thief!!!


   If you are as human as I, you often make judgments regarding a person’s character without full knowledge of the facts.  This can, on occasion, lead to some incorrect assumptions about an individual and the way we interact with them.
   The Savior, in responding to a lawyer’s question of “who is my neighbor” said:
“Judge not according to the appearance, but judge righteous judgment”
   Many times we label individuals according to our first impressions of them.  A person who has their children doing tasks around the home that should be done by an adult may be someone who is suffering with a physical ailment and is in need of extra help.  A young adult who is acting rebellious or angry against authority may be someone who is being abused.  And a person who doesn’t believe in God, is angry all the time, distant, or has a hard time forming relationships may be someone who has lost a loved one and doesn’t know how to deal with that loss. 
   Each of us may encounter someone that is having problems that we know nothing about.   As we encounter these individuals, we must remember to keep our hearts and minds open to what hardships they may be experiencing and not be the “cookie thief” who judges someone before you know all the facts.
   Here is a description of someone you might judge.  See if you can identify this individual.
He had a singular way of walking, which gave the impression that his long, gaunt frame needed oiling.  He plodded forward in an awkward manner, hands hanging at his sides or folded behind his back.  His step had no spring. He lifted his whole foot at once rather than lifting from the toes and then thrust the whole foot down on the ground rather than landing on his heal.  His legs seemed to drag from the knees down, like those of a laborer going home after a hard day’s work.  His features were not such “as belong to a handsome man.”  In repose, his face was overspread with sadness.  Yet, when Abraham Lincoln began to speak this expression of sorrow dropped from him instantly.  His face lighted up with a winning smile, and where before there was a face leaden with sorrow now beheld keen intelligence, genuine kindness of heart, and the promise of true friendship.  If his appearance seemed somewhat odd, what captivated admirers was “his winning manner, his ready good humor, and his unaffected kindness and gentleness.”  Five minutes in his presence, and “you cease to think that he is either homely or awkward.
   Everyone has a story.  We should be reserved in our judgment of others. We may still, in all our human weaknesses, judge others but we should know the facts as much as we can. The Lord loves and cares for all of us. We need to be as caring and loving to our fellowman as he is to us."  ~ Jeff Woodard May 29,2011

"We can never judge the lives of others, because each person knows only their own pain and renunciation. It's one thing to feel that you are on the right path, but it's another to think that yours is the only path."                   ~ Paul Coelho

"We judge others by their behavior. We judge ourselves by our intentions."  ~ Ian Percy

Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day / Birthday!

Today is my daughter Amy's birthday! Yes, she was born on Memorial Day, she was our first and we couldn't imagine how much love this 10LB 10Z dark haired girl could bring into our lives. Even though we were brand new parents, and didn't have a clue what to do, we were so in love with her ...it didn't matter. Some how we figured out all the baby details, and we absolutely loved every minute of it.
Now I look at this beautiful blonde haired woman and realize, not only is she a dear friend of mine, but my daughter too! How lucky could a Mother be?  She is now a Mother too, and so the generations have begun and I feel blessed.

I also feel blessed when I think of all the men and women ( and their families ), who have served... and now serve our country. Words cannot not express the gratitude we feel! How glad I am that we have this wonderful holiday to remember and honor them by.

Hope you and your family had a wonderful Memorial Day!

It is the Soldier

(Charles M. Province)

It is the soldier, not the reporter,
who has given us freedom of the press.

It is the soldier, not the poet,
who has given us freedom of speech.

It is the soldier, not the campus organizer,
who has given us the freedom to demonstrate.

It is the soldier, not the lawyer,
who has given us the right to a fair trial.

It is the soldier,
who salutes the flag, who
serves under the flag, and whose coffin is
draped by the flag, who allows the
protester to burn the flag."

"Our greatest happiness does not depend on the condition of life in which chance has placed us, but is always the result of a good conscience, good health, occupation and freedom in all just pursuits."

"Birthdays are good for you.  Statistics show that the people who have the most live the longest."  ~Larry Lorenzoni

Sunday, May 29, 2011

Hope

Well, I slept in till noon today, and only woke up then because the phone rang. I was shocked when I looked at the clock, what in the world is wrong with me? I never sleep 12 hours and then still feel this tired. It was all I could do to take a shower at 5:00 p.m. and then have dinner and cake, to celebrate our oldest daughter Amy's birthday. Her birthday is actually tomorrow, but we celebrated it today.

I think she had a good time and I tried to stay alert and awake, still I am so very tired. I have to push myself to get anything done. I am thinking now that it isn't a cold coming on, but not sure what else it could be. I sorta felt like this when I had Mono, I pray that I don't have that back.

Anyway as you can tell, the last few days I have been pretty down, and also worried  why my body isn't staying healthy any more. I was on such a good healthy path, not sure how I fell off? Of course, whether I like it or not some of my old worries come back and haunt me a bit. But I realize I just can't go there. I was reading an article today about Hope and thought ...that is where I need to stay. There was a cute story and a few quotes that I need to put on my mirror to remember, that is what I will share (part of with you) tonight...mostly for my benefit! :)

   "Our family grew up in the high desert country of southern Utah. Rain is rare, and hope abounds that there will be sufficient moisture for the coming heat of the summer. Then, as now, we hoped for rain, we prayed for rain, and in dire times, we fasted for rain.
   The story is told there of the grandfather who took his five-year-old grandson for a walk around town. Ultimately, they found themselves at a small grocery store on Main Street where they stopped for a cold soda pop. A car from out of state pulled up and the driver approached the old-timer. Pointing to a small cloud in the sky, the stranger asked, "Do you think it's going to rain?"
   "I certainly hope so," replied the old man, "if not for my sake, for the boy's. I've seen it rain."

   Hope is an emotion which brings richness to our everyday lives. it is defined as " the feeling that ...events will turn out for the best." When we exercise hope, we "look forward...with desire and reasonable confidence". As such , hope brings a certain calming influence to our lives as we confidently look forward to future events.

   We should never let hope be displaced by despair. The exercise of hope enriches our lives and helps us look forward to the future."  ~ Steven E. Snow  May 2011 Ensign

This was the perfect story for me tonight. I just need to remember like the grandfather said, I have seen rain but the boy hasn't .  Like him, I have seen miracles, I have seen tragedy end up into a blessing. I have seen the Tender Mercies of the Lord in my own life, but I need to now... remember to stay hopeful and strong, so that I can help my granddaughters see it too, in their lives. I know things happen for a reason, I know that my Heavenly Father is well aware of my life, my hopes and my dreams. He knows what I have yet to accomplish here on earth, I just need to focus my energies in the right place! Thanks for  your concerns, thoughts and prayers!
Good night dear friends!

Saturday, May 28, 2011

One day at a time.

It was a good choice that I didn't attend the Baby Shower Thursday ( at my own house ), because I was starting to come down with a cold. I felt better yesterday, still didn't leave the house until the evening. It was also Jeff's birthday yesterday and I felt bad that I couldn't do much. Lucky for me, Amy and the girls came over and made a cake, and decorated the house and wrapped packages. So by the time he got home, we had a nice dinner, cake and a real party waiting for him. Thank you again Amy, for pulling off one more party successfully!

We were going to go to a movie, but forgot to go early enough ( it is Memorial Day weekend ), so we ended up just going to the Book Store so I didn't have to walk much. Still by 9:00pm Jeff could tell that I was starting to ache again and the chills were coming back. I was completely worn out hardly without doing anything! Discouraging!
I came home and went right to bed, no blog writing, shoot ...I didn't even was my face ( now I know there will be aging ramifications from that ) but it was all I could do to crawl in bed. I was asleep before 10:00 pm and Lee woke me up at 10:30 this morning, to see if I was ok? (Obviously they don't ever see me sleep that long!) So I am up and still feeling a bit weak, just going to stay low AGAIN today, but if I can keep it from getting really sick, I need to do whatever it takes.

I hope Jeff had a wonderful Birthday, they seem to not be such a big deal as  you get older. But I did want him to remember how much we loved him and how grateful he is a part of our family! He is a great man, I am so glad that he is mine! 

*********************************************************************************************************************************

After reading this quote today, I realized I need to not be discouraged, but just try harder.

"Success is the ability to go from one failure to another with no loss of enthusiasm."  ~ Winston Churchill

"And in the end, it's not the years in your life that count. It's the life in your years." ~ Abraham Lincoln

Friday, May 27, 2011

Motivational?

I have to admit, for the past couple of days, I have worked hard to find something motivational to write in my blog, because I have felt anything OTHER THAN motivational.  Weds. I realized that I was beginning to catch a cold, by evening...I had bad body aches, chills, and just wanted to lay down and get warm. I went to bed early hoping that I could catch it, before it caught me. Woke up this morning feeling about the same...yuck. By this afternoon I realized that I wouldn't even be able to attend a Baby Shower for a dear friend of mine, I was so upset. But what even made it worse, was that the shower was at my house!  Yes, I stayed in my room, in bed the whole time. I slept some and cried some (feeling very sorry for myself) and also sorry, that I missed seeing the excitement on my dear friend's face as she opened all her gifts and had so many people around her that loved her. I pray that she at least felt at home and loved!

Lucky for me, my daughter Amy can host any type of a party. She came early and decorated, and Jeff and Lee cleaned the house for me. I didn't really do anything but feel sorry for myself tonight. I pray that this cold won't go any deeper. I want to go back to my healthy life again! Why do I get so sick, so easily?  You don't really have to answer that... I am just sad tonight. Hope I can sleep after sleeping this evening?

For all of you dear friends that came to the Baby Shower, I am sorry I didn't get to see you. I hope you had a great time, thanks for coming and supporting a dear friend. And I hope you know I would have participated, if I could have!
Good night dear friends!

P.S. Thought this was a good story for me to remember that even though I am sick, there are many reasons and people that I have ...to make it the best time of my life, and for that I am grateful!

 

The Best Time Of My Life 

It was June 15, and in two days I would be turning thirty. I was insecure about entering a new decade of my life and feared that my best years were now behind me.
My daily routine included going to the gym for a workout before going to work. Every morning I would see my friend Nicholas at the gym. He was seventy-nine years old and in terrific shape. As I greeted Nicholas on this particular day, he noticed I wasn't full of my usual vitality and asked if there was anything wrong. I told him I was feeling anxious about turning thirty. I wondered how I would look back on my life once I reached Nicholas's age, so I asked him, "What was the best time of your life?"
Without hesitation, Nicholas replied, "Well, Joe, this is my philosophical answer to your philosophical question:
"When I was a child in Austria and everything was taken care of for me and I was nurtured by my parents, that was the best time of my life.
"When I was going to school and learning the things I know today, that was the best time of my life.
"When I got my first job and had responsibilities and got paid for my efforts, that was the best time of my life.
"When I met my wife and fell in love, that was the best time of my life.
"The Second World War came, and my wife and I had to flee Austria to save our lives. When we were together and safe on a ship bound for North America, that was the best time of my life.
"When we came to Canada and started a family, that was the best time of my life.
"When I was a young father, watching my children grow up, that was the best time of my life.
"And now, Joe, I am seventy-nine years old. I have my health, I feel good and I am in love with my wife just as I was when we first met. This is the best time of my life."

Author Unknown
But Greatly Appreciated!

http://www.inspirationpeak.com/cgi-bin/stories.cgi?record=63

"When you are grateful fear disappears and abundance appears."  ~ Anthony Robbins

"Develop an attitude of gratitude, and give thanks for everything that happens to you, knowing that every step forward is a step toward achieving something bigger and better than your current situation."  ~ Brian Tracy

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Circus and Gratitude

The Circus

Once when I was a teenager, my father and I were standing in line to buy tickets for the circus. Finally, there was only one family between us and the ticket counter.

This family made a big impression on me. There were eight children, all probably under the age of 12. You could tell they didn't have a lot of money. Their clothes were not expensive, but they were clean.

The children were well-behaved, all of them standing in line, two-by- two behind their parents, holding hands. They were excitedly jabbering about the clowns, elephants and other acts they would see that night. One could sense they had never been to the circus before. It promised to be a highlight of their young lives.

The father and mother were at the head of the pack standing proud as could be. The mother was holding her husband's hand, looking up at him as if to say, "You're my knight in shining armor." He was smiling and basking in pride, looking at her as if to reply, "You got that right."

The ticket lady asked the father how many tickets he wanted. He proudly responded, "Please let me buy eight children's tickets and two adult tickets so I can take my family to the circus."

The ticket lady quoted the price. The man's wife let go of his hand, her head dropped, the man's lip began to quiver. The father leaned a little closer and asked, "How much did you say?"

The ticket lady again quoted the price. The man didn't have enough money.

How was he supposed to turn and tell his eight kids that he didn't have enough money to take them to the circus?

Seeing what was going on, my dad put his hand into his pocket, pulled out a $20 bill and dropped it on the ground. (We were not wealthy in any sense of the word!) My father reached down, picked up the bill, tapped the man on the shoulder and said, "Excuse me, sir, this fell out of your pocket."

The man knew what was going on. He wasn't begging for a handout but certainly appreciated the help in a desperate, heartbreaking, embarrassing situation. He looked straight into my dad's eyes, took my dad's hand in both of his, squeezed tightly onto the $20 bill, and with his lip quivering and a tear streaming down his cheek, he replied, "Thank you, thank you, sir. This really means a lot to me and my family."

My father and I went back to our car and drove home. We didn't go to the circus that night, but we didn't go without.

--- Anonymous ---

"A good character is the best tombstone.  Those who loved you and were helped by you will remember you when forget-me-nots have withered.  Carve your name on hearts, not on marble."  ~Charles H. Spurgeon

"A fellow who does things that count, doesn't usually stop to count them."  ~Variation of a saying by Albert Einstein

"It's nice to be important, but it's more important to be nice."  ~Author Unknown

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Just to let you know.

You might have noticed on the right hand of my blog, a new button that looks like this below...or at least the writing part on the right below...Mandie and Me Designs. When I was invited to go to the Quilt Market this year, I thought I should really have a blog that shows my creations and the demos and samples that I do for the shop. So Mandie and Me Designs was created, (with the help of an incredibly talented friend, ok... she did do almost all of it!)

Mandie and Me Designs

Now many of you that read my blog know who Mandie is. She is the name of my prosthetic. I decided to name her, mine as well make it fun. She and I have to be together every day, and so I thought it would be more than perfect to put her name in on my blog with me. Why? Well, because just 2 years ago, after finishing treatments for my cancer, and healing from that and the mastectomy...I went to be fitted for a prosthetic. I thought back then, it really doesn't matter what it looks like, I am never going to go out among people again any way.

I was so worried that everyone would stare and think that I was a freak. Interesting though...I believe that to this day, I was the only one who thought that. But that is exactly what it felt like to me. I remember well, my daughters and daughter- in -law trying to convince me... of how beautiful I still was to them and how I desperately needed to get rid of all my scarf's and turtlenecks. I was trying to cover up, and they were trying to help me realize my true beauty...mastectomy and all.

So you see without sweet Mandie, I probably wouldn't go out each day and feel half way normal. She and I go everywhere, she makes me feel whole. She makes me feel happy and because of those feelings, I am back to creating again and even teaching! Yes, Mandie and I both!  :)

I hope you will take a minute to check out my new blog and remember...it is still a bit of work in progress. I am slow on getting all of the little bugs out of it. So let me know what you think?

Good night dear friends!

 

"Surviving is important. Thriving is elegant."  ~ Maya Angelou 

"My cancer scare changed my life.  I'm grateful for every new, healthy day I have. It has helped me prioritize my life."  ~Olivia Newton-John

"Life isn't about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself."  ~ George Bernard Shaw  

Monday, May 23, 2011

It's a small world!

Tonight I got an email from a follower of my blog. She mentioned that she has been reading it for almost a year, then to my surprise...she reintroduced herself to me. She was one of my students YEARS ago, when I taught a Scripture class back East. I couldn't believe she even remembered me, I was impressed. She shared some things that have happened in her life, that also happened in mine. What a small world we live in.
I would like to leave this poem tonight for all of you who have had some really tough things in life to face. I like it because it is a reminder of how strong we each are, and I would add...we are even stronger when we stand together!
Good night to all and especially to my new/old friend!

YOU ARE STRONG
You are strong ..
when you take your grief and teach it to smile.
You are brave ..
when you overcome your fear and help others
to do the same.

You are happy ..
when you see a flower and are thankful
for the blessing.

You are loving ..
when your own pain does not blind you to the
pain of others.

You are wise ..
when you know the limits of your wisdom.

You are true ..
when you admit there are times you
fool yourself.

You are alive ..
when tomorrow's hope means more to you than
yesterday's mistake.

You are growing ..
when you know what you are but not what you
will become.

You are free ..
when you are in control of yourself and do not wish
to control others.

You are honorable ..
when you find your honor is to honor others.

You are generous ..
when you can take as sweetly as you can give.

You are humble ..
when you do not know how humble you are.

You are thoughtful ..
when you see me just as I am and treat me
just as you are.

You are merciful ..
when you forgive in others the faults you condemn
in yourself.

You are beautiful ..
when you don't need a mirror to tell you.

You are rich ..
when you never need more than what you have.

You are you ..
when you are at peace with who you are not.

Author Unknown

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Perseverance

I have been struggling a bit, in a certain area of my life lately. I wonder at times why it is that throughout your life, that sometimes you struggle over the same thing again and again? Why is it that I can't either change this or learn to endure it well? I have always considered myself a survivor, fighter, and one who can be the change that is needed. But lately when I am still working on this particular area, I begin to wonder how tough or how much perseverance I really have?

I looked up some good quotes on not giving up and then tried to realized that there must still be something I have to learn through this trial OR I would not still be having it. In that case, I am wondering why I am such a slow learner? I have to step back, take a deep breath, and try to keep everything in the proper perspective. When my focus gets narrowed and all I can see is my problems or struggles..then I know I am in trouble. So keeping a perspective for me, is vital.

Tonight I will share with you a few quotes that have helped me out this week...hopefully they will bring some inspiration to you ...if and when  you need it!

"ON THIS UPWARD AND SOMETIMES HAZARDOUS JOURNEY, EACH OF US MEETS OUR SHARE OF DAILY CHALLENGES. IF WE ARE NOT CAREFUL, AS WE PEER THROUGH THE NARROW LENS OF SELF-INTEREST, WE MAY FEEL THAT LIFE IS BRINGING US MORE THAN OUR FAIR SHARE OF TRIALS-THAT SOMEHOW OTHERS SEEM TO BE GETTING OFF MORE LIGHTLY.
BUT THE TESTS OF LIFE ARE TAILORED FOR OUR OWN BEST INTERESTS, AND ALL WILL FACE THE BURDENS BEST SUITED TO THEIR OWN MORTAL EXPERIENCE. IN THE END WE WILL REALIZE THAT GOD IS MERCIFUL AS WELL AS JUST AND THAT ALL THE RULES ARE FAIR. WE CAN BE REASSURED THAT OUR CHALLENGES WILL BE THE ONES WE NEEDED, AND CONQUERING THEM WILL BRING BLESSINGS WE COULD HAVE RECIEVED IN NO OTHER WAY."
~ Jeffrey R. Holland

"There is no way of telling how many miles you will have to run while chasing a dream"

"Being defeated is only a temporary condition. Giving up is what makes it permanent."  ~ Marilyn vos Savant

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Birthday celebration!

Today was my oldest granddaughter's, 5th birthday party! As I watched her sweet face during all the different things they did, I was reminded again of how very much I loved her. How could it be that she is already 5 years old? She will be heading off to school this coming fall, will she be ready? The truth is... I wonder if I am ready?  :)

After the party she came over to my house.  We talked about all the wonderful gifts she got and then she asked me when we were going to do our monthly SLEEPOVER? I smiled, I am glad she still thinks it is a really big thing to come and do sleep-overs at Nana's house. I hope she and Jenny, never get too old for that!

Read this sweet story, and it reminded me of the kindness of others and how if we watch for it...we will find it everywhere!

Good night dear friends!

Balloons And Angels

Sometimes, it is the smallest acts of kindness that are the most memorable. It was several years ago that this particular event occurred; the reason I remember it because it was my daughter Kathy's birthday.

My children and I were finishing the last minute preparations for Kathy's birthday celebration. At one store we had bought colorful helium balloon with Kathy's favorite character design on it. We had to make one more stop at another store to complete our purchases. I sent out my older daughter and her little brother out to our van while my other daughter and I were waiting at the cashier line.

A very short time later, my older daughter with little brother in tow came running back into the store; upset that Kathy's birthday balloon had escaped while they trying to get into the van. I was tired from shopping, but I sent them back to the vehicle telling them not to worry we would get Kathy another balloon. I paid for our purchases all the while trying to think of the most expedient place to obtain another balloon.

As Kathy and I approached our van a mature looking lady with kindly face came up to us almost of out of thin air. She pressed some folded bills in my hand. She related to me that she had seen what had happened and did not want my older daughter or my younger daughter to be upset at the loss of the balloon. She told us that she was mother, grandmother and great grandmother. Mind you she looked barely old enough to be a grandmother much less a great grandmother.

I thanked her for kindness and attempted to give her the money back; as it was not a problem to get another balloon. She was most insistent because she said "I love children and I like to see them be happy." I was overwhelmed by the kindness of a total stranger that my daughters and I hugged the lady thanking her for kindness. She left so quickly that I was unable to even ask her name. Finally, I looked in my hand what I found was not just a single one dollar bill but four one dollar bills.

I was very touched not by the money, but by this lovely lady's act of kindness and generosity. Because of her kindness it made Kathy's birthday even more special. I truly believe that dear lady at the very least is one of God's earthly angels and who is to say that she wasn't a real angel. How often is it said that we entertain angels unaware.  -- Copyright © 1998 Ruth Mack

"Be an angel to someone else whenever you can, as a way of thanking God for the help your angel has given you."   ~Eileen Elias Freeman, 1994

"The golden moments in the stream of life rush past us and we see nothing but sand; the angels come to visit us, and we only know them when they are gone."  ~George Elliot

"A grandmother is a little bit parent, a little bit teacher, and a little bit best friend." ~Author Unknown

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Travel lighter!

This story made me smile, because I am always sweating each time we arrive to the air port and check in my luggage. I pray silently as they weigh it, hoping it doesn't weigh more than 50 pounds. Seriously, aren't there classes or something out there, to teach you how to pack and travel lighter?  I really want to learn how, maybe like this story I should relax more, maybe that is my problem. I always try pack lots of things, just in case I need them.
Anyway, this was a sweet story about relaxing and truly appreciating the MOMENTS in life! Since my battles with Cancer, I feel like I do that a lot anyway. But like all of us...it never hurts to have a reminder!

Good night dear friends!

 

I Would Pick More Daisies 

When the late Nadine Stair of Louisville, Kentucky, was 85 years old, she was asked what she would do if she had her life to live over again.
"I'd make more mistakes next time," she said. "I'd relax. I would limber up. I would be sillier than I have been on this trip. I would take fewer things seriously. I would take more chances. I would climb more mountains and swim more rivers. I would eat more ice cream and less beans. I would perhaps have more actual troubles, but I'd have fewer imaginary ones.
"You see, I'm one of those people who live sensibly and sanely hour after hour, day after day. Oh, I've had my moments, and if I had to do it over again, I'd have more of them. In fact, I'd try to have nothing else. Just moments, one after another, instead of living so many years ahead of each day. I've been one of those persons who never goes anywhere without a thermometer, a hot water bottle, and a raincoat. If I had to do it over again, I would travel lighter than I have.
"If I had my life to live over, I would start barefoot earlier in the spring and stay that way later in the fall. I would go to more dances. I would ride more merry-go-rounds and I would pick more daisies." ~ Don Herold(Adapted) ~http://www.inspirationpeak.com/cgi-bin/stories.cgi?record=42

"Enjoy the little things in life, for one day you may look back and realize they were the big things." ~Unknown

"Prosperity depends more on wanting what you have than having what you want." Geoffrey F. Abert

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Just be HAPPY!

Well, it has been a long, but great day. I left the cold, rainy and dreary weather in Salt Lake City, Utah and flew into Sunny Seattle....don't get to say that very often. :)

I had a wonderful trip at the Quilt Market, I must have walked miles, that is saying something for me. Oh I did have to rest but all in all, I made it! It was fun to see my family again, I am one lucky lady.

It is late and I am beyond tired. I found this sweet little story about choosing to be happy, and how sometimes a little child will lead us. I hope you enjoy it.
Good night dear friends!

Be Happy (A True Story) 

  Around twenty years ago I was living in Seattle and going through hard times. I could not find satisfying work and I found this especially difficult as I had a lot of experience and a Masters degree.
To my shame I was driving a school bus to make ends meet and living with friends. I had lost my apartment. I had been through five interviews with a company and one day between bus runs they called to say I did not get the job. I went to the bus barn like a zombie of disappointment.
Later that afternoon, while doing my rounds through a quiet suburban neighborhood I had an inner wave - like a primal scream - arise from deep inside me and I thought "Why has my life become so hard?" "Give me a sign, I asked... a physical sign - not some inner voice type of thing."
Immediately after this internal scream I pulled the bus over to drop off a little girl and as she passed she handed me an earring saying I should keep it in case somebody claimed it. The earring was stamped metal, painted black and said 'BE HAPPY'.
At first I got angry - yeah, yeah, I thought. Then it hit me. I had been putting all of my energies into what was wrong with my life rather than what was right! I decided then and there to make a list of 50 things I was grateful for.
At first it was hard, then it got easier. One day I decided to up it to 75. That night there was a phone call for me at my friend's house from a lady who was a manager at a large hospital. About a year earlier I had submitted a syllabus to a community college to teach a course on stress management. (Yup, you heard me. ;-) She asked me if I would do a one-day seminar for 200 hospital workers. I said yes and got the job.
My day with the hospital workers went very well. I got a standing ovation and many more days of work. To this day I KNOW that it was because I changed my attitude to gratitude.
Incidentally, the day after I found the earring the girl asked me if anyone had claimed it. I told her no and she said "I guess it was meant for you then."
I spent the next year conducting training workshops all around the Seattle area and then decided to risk everything and go back to Scotland where I had lived previously. I closed my one man business, bought a plane ticket and got a six month visa from immigration. One month later I met my wonderful English wife and best friend of 15 years now. We live in a small beautiful cottage, two miles from a paved road in the highlands of Scotland.
'THE ONLY ATTITUDE IS GRATITUDE' has been my motto for years now and yes, it completely changed my life.
~Davy Jones

"Most people would rather be certain they're miserable, than risk being happy."  ~Robert Anthony

"What a wonderful life I've had!  I only wish I'd realized it sooner."  ~Colette

Tuesday, May 17, 2011

Staying consistent in an ever changing world.

I loved this story, because I do believe we need to remember we are living in an ever changing world. The pace is fast and the pressure is unbelievable.  I just went to this Quilt Market last week, I was talking to a young designer. I asked her what it was like to design your own fabric, and was it exciting to see your designs be printed on fabric? Her answer was "Yes, it is really exciting but I have to admit, you almost don't have a chance to admire it, because the pressure is on to hurry and design something for the next season. I thought it was going to be just a small time commitment but it is a 8 -10 hour day, every day" "There is a huge competition in this line of work, if you don't stay on top of creating something amazing and beautiful, there is someone else who will."

It reminded me that even something good, can be a test of your ability to make the right choice and to stay consistent in such a fast pace, ever changing world. I always thought that I would like to design fabric but maybe I will just have to do patterns instead. I love creating and the challenge to create something that has never been done  before but...I don't want to give up the time I spend with family and friends, and that does come first. Each day is a challenge to make the right decisions and to keep a balance in our lives. Balance...now that is a hard one!

The Painter and The Child 

     

Centuries ago a great artist was engaged to paint a mural for the cathedral in a Sicilian town. The subject was the life of Christ. For many years the artist labored diligently, and finally the painting was finished except for the two most important figures: the Christ Child and Judas Iscariot. He searched far and wide for suitable models.
One day while walking in the city he came upon some children playing in the street. Among them was a 12-year-old boy whose face stirred the painter's heart. The artist took the child home with him, and day after day the boy sat patiently until the face of the Christ Child was finished. But the painter still had found no model for the portrait of Judas.
The story of the unfinished masterpiece spread afar, and many men, fancying themselves of wicked countenance, offered to pose for Judas. But in vain the old painter looked for Judas, as he envisioned him-a man warped by life, enfeebled by surrender to greed and lust.
Then one afternoon as he sat in a tavern, a gaunt and tattered figure staggered across the threshold. 'Wine, wine,' he begged. The startled painter looked into a face that seemed to bear the marks of every sin of mankind. "Greatly excited, the old painter said, 'Come with me, and I will give you wine.'
For many days the painter worked feverishly to complete his masterpiece. As the work went on, a change came over the model. A strange tension replaced the stupor languor, and his bloodshot eyes were fixed with horror on the painted likeness of himself.
One day, perceiving his subject's agitation, the painter paused in his work. "My son," he said, "what troubles you so?"
The man buried his face in his hands, sobbing. After a long moment he lifted pleading eyes to the old painter's face. "Do you not then remember me? Years ago I was your model for the Christ Child.'"     ~Hugh B. Brown

"It is possible to be clean in a dirty world."
Sheri L. Dew (God Wants a Powerful People)

“If you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change.”
- Dr Wayne Dyer

"Quite frankly, I don't think "time" is the problem.
The real problem is the number of activities or tasks that we take on.
A sign of our time is that we forget how to say "no", and take on far too many things."
Catherine Pulsifer

Monday, May 16, 2011

Attitude

Well, it is Monday night and I am finally taking over my blog again. My sweet daughter Lauren did it for me, while I was busy at the Quilt Market. How grateful I am that she took the time to do that.  Amy did it for me the last time I was out of town. They both did an amazing job, so good that I was afraid you wouldn't want me back!  :)

It has been interesting to see the concern the whole family has for my blog. I am constantly asked  "Have you done your blog yet?" "What are you going to write about today?" I think my family realizes how much this blog has done for me, and hopefully has done for others. It is true, some days when I am feeling low and wondering if I am making progress at all, I go back and read some of my old posts, and realize I am making progress...no matter how slow it is.

Tonight I am at my oldest brother's house with him and his wife. I have to admit, I love their house. Probably because she decorates it with the true country motive. I mean my house is country too, but hers is actually like you went back in time. She goes to tons of Estate sales and garage sells, and has quite the eye for decorating. It is fun to look around and see all the treasures she has found. Actually all my sister-in-laws are all quite the decorators, all different but all incredible.

I need to head to bed, I hope that you enjoy this sweet story of attitude. I also hope you enjoyed my daughter's posts as much as I did, and I hope you are as glad to see me back, as I am to be back?

Good night dear friends!

Shoes

 


As Gandhi stepped aboard a train one day, one of his shoes slipped off and landed on the track. He was unable to retrieve it as the train was moving. To the amazement of his companions, Gandhi calmly took off his other shoe and threw it back along the track to land close to the first. Asked by a fellow passenger why he did so, Gandhi smiled. "The poor man who finds the shoes lying on the track," he replied, "will now have a pair he can use."
~ Unknown

"I am still determined to be cheerful and happy, in whatever situation I may be; for I have also learned from appexperience that the greater part of our happiness or misery depends upon our dispositions, and not upon our circumstances."   ~ Martha Washington

"Two men look out the same prison bars; one sees mud and the other stars."  ~ Frederick Langbridge

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Capture the Moment

Your eyes are the most advance piece of camera equipment every created. They can see the slightest detail, and every flash of color. It is an incredible phenomenon that at the push of a button you can freeze that image in time; creating a lasting memory. I am a photographer and as such see things that if one isn’t look for it won’t ever discover it. Oddly enough I have found myself staring as a moss-covered wall seeing an a mosaic etched in the cement. But I also have come to find that a simple glance or a laugh can produce the greatest masterpieces.

I once saw a place that I believed to be a glimpse of heaven and I couldn’t let the moment pass me by. I quickly snapped the picture to save that memory and still today I look back at that picture with awe, not necessarily because it was well taken, but the beauty of the place. This is the photograph.

creek 

Catch every moment you can, but also make each moment worth catching. M. Scott Peck once said, “The truth is that our finest moments are most likely to occur when we are feeling deeply uncomfortable, unhappy, or unfulfilled. For it is only in such moments, propelled by our discomfort, that we are likely to step out of our ruts and start searching for different ways or truer answers”. Some of the best things in life happen when we least expect it, so prepare now to receive them ( or in my case catch them).

“To photograph is to hold one’s breath, when all faculties converge to capture fleeting reality. It’s at that precise moment that mastering an image becomes a great physical and intellectual joy.” ~Henri Cartier-Bresson

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Knowledge: The Love of Learning

“Information. Information at our finger tips. Information without end…If you memorize the World Almanac, you wouldn’t be educated. You’d be weird.” (David McCullough) I read two literary essays recently titled The Love of Learning by David McCullough and Learning to Love Learning, by David A. Bednar. They are phenomenal essays teaching you the difference between information and true wisdom and the application of that knowledge is to develop a God-like character.

David McCullough’s essay was an address to the Boston College graduates, in which he talked of the importance of knowing the difference of information and knowledge, “But information, let us be clear, isn’t learning. Information isn’t poetry. Or art. Or Gershwin or the Shaw Memorial. Or faith. It isn’t wisdom”. He isn’t necessarily  disregarding information as invaluable but stresses that facts alone are never enough. He says it is found through the love of learning. We need to develop a deep desire to educate for ourselves and others.

To correlate, Bednar’s address he stresses that education is never enough unless we develop a drive to learn all through out our lives. “Academic assignments, test scores, and cumulative GPA do not produce a final and polished product. Rather, students have only started to put in place a foundation of learning upon which they can build forever.” This quote came as a great comfort to me because I was never what you call an “A” student; quite frankly, I couldn’t wait to get out of high school! But as I have come to here to college I have indeed that incredible desire to learn. An creepy phenomenon has occurred, but I actually stay in the Library for quite some time just reading or studying a topic that I don’t even have a class for. 

David A. Bednar goes on to say, "no book of answers is readily available with guidelines and solutions to the great challenges of life. All we have is our capacity to learn and our love of and for learning”. I believe we never stop learning, not even once in our lives. And if it is our desire to become closer to God, we need to learn all we can, but not by education alone but through our experiences in this life too. 

education  

“You can teach a student a lesson for a day; but if you can teach him to learn by creating curiosity, he will continue the learning process as long as he lives.”  ~Clay P. Bedford

“Education consists mainly of what we have unlearned.”  ~Mark Twain

Your Life is an Occasion; Rise to it.

The other day I watched an adorable family movie called Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium. It tells the tale of finding the magic even when your grown up; finding that spark in you. My favorite part of the film was this section where Mr. Magorium is about to leave and he says one last good by to his assistant Molly Mahoney. 

“When King Lear dies in act 5 do you know what Shakespeare has written? He has written “He Dies”. That’s all. Nothing more. No fan fair, no metaphor, no brilliant final words. The culmination of the most influential work of dramatic literature is, ‘He dies’. It takes, Shakespeare, as genius to come up with “he dies”. And yet every time I read those two words, I find myself overwhelmed with dysphorium. And I know it is only natural to be sad, but not because of the words ‘he dies’, but because of the life we saw prior to the words. I have lived all my five of my acts, Mahoney, and I am not asking for you to be happy that I must go. I am only asking that you turn the page, continue reading, and let the next story begin. And if anyone ever asks what became of me, you relate my life and all its wonder and end it with a simple, and modest, ‘he died’.”

He gives her a hug and his parting words are, “Your life is an occasion; rise to it.”

I thought it was incredibly profound. This life is short, but we can make it worth every minute. Push aside fears and doubts and create our own new story. As we turn the pages in life we can find new adventures and experiences to enhance our lives.

Rocky

"Life's journey is not to arrive safely at the grave in a well preserved body. But rather skid in sideways totally worn out, shouting: 'WOO-HOO! What a ride!'" ~Unknown

Friday, May 13, 2011

You are what you read.

My English 201class is taught by one of my favorite professors Jaren Watson. In the first class period he told us about what he called ‘junk food’ books. Theses are books are easy reads that are, while entertaining, do not challenge your mental capacity. “These books aren’t bad,” he said, “but they do not push you to your limits. They don’t force you to think.” I took it upon myself to create a list of 20 or so classic novels, in which I plan to read 10-15 by the end of the semester. This list contains the books that that I have so far read, which are; "Diaries of Adam and Eve” by Mark Twain, “The Princess Bride” by S. Morgensterns, “The Three Musketeers” by Alexandre Dumas and “Ender’s Game” by Orson Scott Card. Just as my professor said, these books caused me to stop and thin. They weren’t necessarily challenging reading, but their concepts had more substance than I had read in awhile. But with these books I have recognized my comprehension soar as I now read other things.

It’s an incredible thing, a book. You can travel the world without ever setting foot on a ship, or even explore the heavens without ever leaving the ground. As a kid I loved Disney’s Beauty and the Beast, where he surprises Belle with an palace of novels decorating the ancient shelves. Sometimes I wish I could spend my days among mountains books, swimming in the vast knowledge they contain. It’s incredible how one’s life can be changed by the collection of words and simple truths. 

books 

“The worth of a book is to be measured by what you can carry away from it.”  ~James Bryce

“It is what you read when you don't have to that determines what you will be when you can't help it.”  ~Oscar Wilde

Wednesday, May 11, 2011

A Touch of Birthday Magic

While my mom is away on business (which she thinks sounds so cool) you’ll just have to hear from her daughter Lauren. I’ll try not to bore you with my way of writing because I know it isn’t nearly as fun as my mom’s.

Well today is my niece, Angie’s birthday, and she has just turned five. I got a call this morning from her because she received the birthday package I sent, which had a pair of fairy wings and a matching hair bow. Angie was so excited and she danced around the house in them with her little sister who has a matching pair. For her birthday party she wants magical fairies and dragons as the theme. Amy asked me to draw a cute invitation to fit the unique them, and here are the results.

fairy and dragon f3

Birthdays are an incredible mark in one’s life, and for a child its a chance to shower them with the love they deserve and the magic that makes it worth while.

Here is a fun little story that seems to serve both my purposes today.

I was substituting in my own son’s kindergarten classroom, and it happened to be his birthday. He told one of the children, and she asked me, “Is it really his birthday?” I replied, “Yes, he was born six years ago today.” The little girl looked at me in amazement. “You mean he was BORN on his BIRTHDAY? What a lucky boy!”

“The old believe everything; the middle aged suspect everything: the young know everything” ~Oscar Wilde

“Few women admit their age. Few men act theirs.” ~Unknown

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Tasting Life

I love this short story, how true it is. So often we want the answers to things right away, not understanding that many times you really can't be told the answer before it happens. Everyone experiences are different in life, even if it is the same as someone else, the situation is will never be exactly the same...why? Because we are all different and see, handle and feel things differently. So remember some questions just can't be answered until you live and experience them. Patience is a wonderful quality, when it comes to tasting life!

Good night dear friends.

Tasting Life 

Before the young man began his studies, he wanted assurance from the Master.
"Can you teach me the goal of human life?"
"I cannot," replied the Master.
"Or at least its meaning?"
"I cannot."
"Can you indicate to me the nature of death and of life beyond the grave?"
"I cannot."
The young man walked away in scorn. The disciples were dismayed that their Master had been shown up in a poor light.
Said the Master soothingly, "Of what is it to comprehend life's nature and life's meaning if you have never tasted it? I'd rather you ate your pudding than speculated on it."

"Be patient toward all that is unsolved in your heart and try to love the questions themselves... Do not now seek the answers, which cannot be given to you because you will not be able to live them. And the point is, to live everything. Live the questions now. Perhaps you will then gradually, without noticing it, live along some distant day into the answer."    ~ Rainer Maria Rilke

Monday, May 9, 2011

Thanks for your Time

When my grandmother was in the nursing home right down the street from us, I used to take my daughter to see her almost every day. On the days we missed from being sick or something, I would always call her and apologize. I remember her once saying "Lynn, where ever they sit me down, is where I stay all day until the meals are served. Seeing you and Amy makes my day!" I knew it did and so I tried hard not to miss a day. I loved my grandmother and all she did for me growing up, so the least I could do was give her my time.

This sweet story reminded me of those days with her. If there is someone that needs your TIME, please readjust your calendars to fit a visit or two in, it truly means the world to them!

Good night dear friends!

Thanks for Your Time 

It had been some time since Jack had seen the old man. College, girls, career, and life itself got in the way. In fact, Jack moved clear across the country in pursuit of his dreams. There, in the rush of his busy life, Jack had little time to think about the past and often no time to spend with his wife and son. He was working on his future, and nothing could stop him.
Over the phone, his mother told him, "Mr. Belser died last night. The funeral is Wednesday."
Memories flashed through his mind like an old newsreel as he sat quietly remembering his childhood days.
"Jack, did you hear me?"
"Oh sorry, Mom. Yes, I heard you. It's been so long since I thought of him. I'm sorry, but I honestly thought he died years ago," Jack said.
"Well, he didn't forget you. Every time I saw him he'd ask how you were doing. He'd reminisce about the many days you spent over 'his side of the fence' as he put it," Mom told him.
"I loved that old house he lived in," Jack said.
"You know, Jack, after your father died, Mr. Belser stepped in to make sure you had a man's influence in your life," she said.
"He's the one who taught me carpentry," he said. "I wouldn't be in this business if it weren't for him. He spent a lot of time teaching me things he thought were important... Mom, I'll be there for the funeral," Jack said.
As busy as he was, he kept his word. Jack caught the next flight to his hometown. Mr. Belser's funeral was small and uneventful. He had no children of his own, and most of his relatives had passed away.
The night before he had to return home, Jack and his Mom stopped by to see the old house next door one more time.
Standing in the doorway, Jack paused for a moment. It was like crossing over into another dimension, a leap through space and time.
The house was exactly as he remembered. Every step held memories. Every picture, every piece of furniture... Jack stopped suddenly.
"What's wrong, Jack?" his Mom asked.
"The box is gone," he said.
"What box?" Mom asked.
"There was a small gold box that he kept locked on top of his desk. I must have asked him a thousand times what was inside. All he'd ever tell me was 'the thing I value most,'" Jack said.
It was gone. Everything about the house was exactly how Jack remembered it, except for the box. He figured someone from the Belser family had taken it.
"Now I'll never know what was so valuable to him," Jack said. "I better get some sleep. I have an early flight home, Mom."
It had been about two weeks since Mr. Belser died. Returning home from work one day Jack discovered a note in his mailbox. "Signature required on a package. No one at home. Please stop by the main post office within the next three days," the note read.
Early the next day Jack retrieved the package. The small box was old and looked like it had been mailed a hundred years ago. The handwriting was difficult to read, but the return address caught his attention.
"Mr. Harold Belser" it read.
Jack took the box out to his car and ripped open the package. There inside was the gold box and an envelope. Jack's hands shook as he read the note inside.
"Upon my death, please forward this box and its contents to Jack Bennett. It's the thing I valued most in my life." A small key was taped to the letter. His heart racing, as tears filling his eyes, Jack carefully unlocked the box. There inside he found a beautiful gold pocket watch.
Running his fingers slowly over the finely etched casing, he unlatched the cover. Inside he found these words engraved:
"Jack, Thanks for your time! -Harold Belser."
"The thing he valued most...was...my time."
Jack held the watch for a few minutes, then called his office and cleared his appointments for the next two days. "Why?" Janet, his assistant asked.
"I need some time to spend with my son," he said. "Oh, by the way, Janet... thanks for your time!"
~Author Unknown

"Time is free, but it's priceless. You can't own it, but you can use it. You can't keep it, but you can spend it. Once you've lost it you can never get it back."  ~ Harvey MacKay

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Mother's Day!

Today was a great day, I got up and made my own breakfast ( remember I have all boys in the house now ) then we headed off to church together. One of the speakers spoke of our role as Mothers...meaning all women and the important role we have as daughters of God.

1. To Nurture...Like the sun!  Our spiritual light can help others grow all around us
2. To be an Example...it is important to live, what we teach our children and others
3. To create a place to grow...there should be an atmosphere in our home that creates a climate of love, safety, acceptance, and a place where the Spirit of God can be felt.

She mentioned Mother Theresa and how over 40 years she served others, and none of them were children that she bore.

A woman's influence is felt everywhere...may we never forget to do good continually!

It was a great reminder for me, I love being a Mom! It by far has been the hardest, toughest job in the world, but the best job in the WORLD. I am so grateful to have 4 wonderful, happy kids ...who are making a difference for good in the world. Kids who know their Heavenly Father and are trying daily to do what's right. How could any Mother ask for more?

I hope all of you had a wonderful Mother's Day and will remember your incredible worth!
Good night dear friends!
P.S. Don't forget to read this sweet story!

  roses[1]

A man stopped at a flower shop to order some flowers to be wired to his mother who lived two hundred miles away.

As he got out of his car he noticed a young girl sitting on the curb sobbing.

He asked her what was wrong and she replied, "I wanted to buy a red rose for my mother.

But I only have seventy-five cents, and a rose costs two dollars."

The man smiled and said, "Come on in with me. I'll buy you a rose."

He bought the little girl her rose and ordered his own mother's flowers.

As they were leaving he offered the girl a ride home.

She said, "Yes, please! You can take me to my mother."

She directed him to a cemetery, where she placed the rose on a freshly dug grave.

The man returned to the flower shop, canceled the wire order, picked up a bouquet and drove the two hundred miles to his mother's house.

***********************************************************************************************************************************

"Being a full-time mother is one of the highest salaried jobs in my field, since the payment is pure love."  ~Mildred B. Vermont

"If you have a mom, there is nowhere you are likely to go where a prayer has not already been."  ~Robert Brault

Saturday, May 7, 2011

Shadows

I loved this little poem, it is true... our kids are just like shadows following us around. Hope you enjoy it!

Good night!

 

Her Little Shadows
  by: Author Unknown

I saw a young mother
With eyes full of laughter
And two little shadows
Came following after.

Wherever she moved,
They were always right there
Holding onto her skirts,
Hanging onto her chair.
Before her, behind her-
An adhesive pair.

"Don't you ever get weary
As, day after day,
Your two little tagalongs
Get in your way?

She smiled as she shook
Her pretty young head,
And I'll always remember
The words that she said

"It's good to have shadows
That run when you run,
That laugh when you're happy
And hum when you hum -
For you only have shadows

When your life's filled with sun."

 

"God could not be everywhere and therefore he made mothers." -- A Jewish Proverb

"Making the decision to have a child-it's momentous. It is to decide forever to have your heart go walking around outside your body."
--Elizabeth Stone

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Orphaned

   A dear friend of mine today, told me that her Mother-in-law just passed away. She explained how hard this whole thing has been on her husband ( 1 of 6 children ). She mentioned that although the Mom was really sick, she didn't pass away until all of her children got there and told her good bye. I remember those last days and months with my Mother, those were very hard. I pray my dear friend and her family will find peace. 
   I remember talking to Hospice worker who had been with Hospice for many years. She helped us in our journey of telling my Mom good bye. She said that Mothers are the hardest ones to die. They want to know that all their kids are ok and will be ok, before she leaves this earth. Yes, Mother's still mother... till the very end.

   I can still remember the first time I heard someone refer to me as an orphan, now that both of my parents had passed away. It struck me sorta hard, although it is actually true...it's a hard thing to hear. Sometimes I feel too young to be an orphan. There have been many times when I wondered what my Mom would have said, or what advice she would have given me, if I could still talk to her. I wish there was a SPECIAL PHONE... for calls to HEAVEN, oh I realize it would be an expensive call, but you would only use it for emergencies. :) Of course when it comes to a girl needing to talk to her Mom, there could be an emergency ever day!

Old White Phone

   But if you really think about it, wouldn't it be great? I would love to talk to my Grandma Johnny and ask her if she ever found Sugar Johnson ( a relative that she could never find in her genealogy search). I would like to talk to my Aunt Ina, we lived with her the first 10 years of my life, she was my protector and best friend. I would ask her how to make her Date Filled Cookies, I have never tasted anything quite like them. I would like to talk to my Grandma Boat. I would ask her what the reunion was like with her Mom and brother? Her brother and Mom both passed away, when she was just a young girl.

   Yes, I know in my heart that those on the other side are much closer than we realize but some times ...I just can't help to want it to be even closer! So even though I am an orphan, I feel like a very young one. Especially when I see so many of my friends with their Mom's and Dad's still alive. I think my heart aches a little bit more when it Mother's Day comes around, maybe that is normal or maybe it's not? But it sure is REAL!

   Good night dear friends!

 

FAREWELL
The sand of time are running low
And soon my children I must go
My heart with love for you is filled
But soon its beating must be stilled
I leave no treasures of any kind
Only my love I leave behind
Take it and share it between sister and brother
And always be kind to one another
Weep not beside the grave for me
Don't bring me flowers I cannot see
Only ashes lie neath the cold sod
Just pray that my soul has gone with God
Some of you perhaps may weep
When my eyes are closed in eternal sleep
But try to remember it won't be forever
For God can bring our spirits together
I pray that I go to a world far above
To be with the others that I love
And to wait awhile on that Heavenly plain
Until the day we shall meet again.
(The poem was written by Florence McInnes for her children) http://www.motivateus.com/stories/grieve-3.htm

"Goodbyes are not forever.
Goodbyes are not the end.
They simply mean I'll miss you
Until we meet again!"
-- Author Unknown

Wednesday, May 4, 2011

Replaceable parts!

Not everyone can say that they are going to get a replaceable body part, when theirs aren't working as well any more! But I can! Yes, tomorrow I get to go pick up Mandy the 3rd. I am so excited, Mandy the 2nd has been having a few problems and so I am excited to get her replacement. I have had to save up money, because of course they cost more than the insurance pays. I sorta have an attitude about this. We are talking about a prosthetic here, not a luxury item that isn't a necessity. Why can't they make them the same price that insurance will pay? Having had cancer twice, I have to tell you that there is a bit of a racket going on. That really gets to me. Why is it people want to take advantage of others? I have never understood that. Many times when I go to the grocery store they will ask when I check out...if I want to donate money for the fight for Breast Cancer. I always so no, because I am still paying so much for my own things. I have said this on more than one occasion, but it is true...you can't afford to have cancer.

I am not being ungrateful, I am very grateful that we have insurance, and good insurance but still the money that is required when you have cancer is unbelievable. If I think about it too long, I get mad and so I will go back to my HAPPY PLACE and count my blessings.

I called Amy to see if she and the girls wanted to go with me, she thought that was weird...I thought it would be fun. It's not like the girls know what we are doing, or who we are picking up. I just didn't really want to make the drive alone. I haven't ever gone by myself, I always have so many dear friends willing to go with me, but this time everyone was busy. So I will head off myself tomorrow and go pick up my new prosthetic Miss Mandie. I smile when I think about her, and how grateful I am for modern technology and for all the things that are out there to make survivors look and feel as normal as possible. I am a lucky lady, that's for sure!

Good night dear friends!

"What lies behind us and what lies ahead of us are tiny matters compared to what lives within us."
-Henry David Thoreau

"Cancer is a word, not a sentence."  ~John Diamond

"Oh, my friend, it's not what they take away from you that counts - it's what you do with what you have left."  ~Hubert Humphrey

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

I joined the Rudolph Club!

Now before you jump to conclusions, I want to explain what the Rudolph Club is. Yes, I have mentioned on more than one occasion I believe ....about how much I LOVE the Christmas Season! I do, and I would love it even more if I really had things planned and ready ahead of time so I could enjoy each day of the season. I came across this web-site that actually holds virtual meetings once a month on the 25th and they give you tips, coupons, ideas and suggestions of how to be ready for Christmas by planning it out a year ahead.
Now I know there are some of you that say " I don't even want to think about Christmas till after Thanksgiving. That is ok, but I think it is ok for those of us who are soooooooooooooo crazy about Christmas to be planning and preparing for it early. I was really surprised at all the great ideas they had. These people are serious about trying to take all the worry and stress out of Christmas, and I like that! The nice thing is that you can join, without anyone else knowing about it. That way no one can tease you ...unless you tell them like me! I don't care, I love Christmas, I wish we could have it all year long! I wish the world could be that kind and that happy all year long. I wish we could all be that compassionate all year long so  I was the perfect person you might say... to join the Rudolph Club and I am proud of it!

 http://christmas.organizedhome.com/rudolph-club/september

Have a good night!

2011 Christmas Open House 004

" Christmas is not a time nor a season, but a state of mind. To cherish peace and goodwill, to be plenteous in mercy, is to have the real spirit of Christmas."  ~ Calvin Coolidge

"Let us keep Christmas beautiful without a thought of greed. That it might live forevermore to fill our every need. That is shall not be just a day, but last a lifetime through. The miracle of Christmas time that brings God close to you."  ~ Ann Schultz

 

Monday, May 2, 2011

20/20 vision

We listened, as probably much of the world did last night as our President Obama announced the death of Osama bin Laden. As we watched the excitement around the world, we realized how many years we all have been waiting for this day. We also listened to the phone interviews with many of the people who lost family members in the Sept. 11th attack. It was interesting to hear how some were still angry, some excited and some... a mixture of both.

Many of the kids that were celebrating at the White House were young adults, who at the time of Sept. 11th were only probably around 9-10 years old. Still their whole life they have been watching the world look for Osama bin Laden. I liked seeing the ones who were holding up the American Flag and singing songs, much better than the kids that were just screaming and jumping around in front of the camera.

We have a nephew in the service right now, and we were grateful to hear that there were no American soldiers were hurt during this attack. I thought as I listened and watched last night, how different everyone's view on this whole thing was. When you have children or loved ones that are serving in the Military, every day you are concerned and watching the news. And yet to others who aren't as involved, it seems a world away at times.
I do think we need to daily pray and think about all those who defend and protect our country. Each day they are putting their lives at risk ...to save ours! 

I also believe the only way we are going to have 20/20 vision on this subject, is if we never take for granted our freedom and liberty!

I pray we will continue to have more success. God Bless America!

 

"I like to see a man proud of the place in which he lives.  I like to see a man live so that his place will be proud of him."  ~Abraham Lincoln

"This nation will remain the land of the free only so long as it is the home of the brave."  ~Elmer Davis

"How often we fail to realize our good fortune in living in a country where happiness is more than a lack of tragedy."  ~Paul Sweeney

Sunday, May 1, 2011

Long Day!

Today even though it was the Sabbath, has been a long day. Our son Lee had 6 muscle spasm attacks. Two of which were longer than normal. It is just nerve wrecking to watch your child hurt sooooooooo much, and really not being able to do anything about it. I am sad to see the toll it is taking on his sweet spirit, he is getting really anxious about the next attack and when and where it will come? He is frustrated that we can't get this figured out and discouraged at how much of his time and energy this whole thing is taking.

We will continue to pray, watch, study, search and do all that we can, but oh how amazing it is that time seems to have stood still for most of this day. How thankful we are for family and friends who are keeping him in their thoughts and prayers.

I need to go to bed, good night dear friends!

"Character cannot be developed in ease and quiet. Only through experience of trial and suffering can the soul be strengthened, ambition inspired, and success achieved."   ~ Helen Keller

"Although the world is full of suffering, it is also full of the overcoming of it."  ~ Helen Keller