Friday, February 27, 2009

Flying around up there...

I found this really great article today while browsing around on the net. I thought the analogy to flying and landing the plane was great. I agree, sometimes I just want to vent with Andrew, I don't want him to solve the problem, or offer me solutions to the issue. I usually know the answer to the situation, but I just want someone to listen. I just want to get it off my chest and move on. But like most men, he feels it is his responsibility to solve the problem. So I let him read this article and told him that from now on when I come to him and start telling him about a problem or being to complain about something, he should ask me if I need help landing the plane or do I just want to fly around up there for a while.

The other issue he brings up in the article has to do with believers who think you don't have the victory in your life because you have sorrow, or your feeling low. Sometimes we just have hurtful things to face in life, and some things you just can't jump up the next day and say "thank you God for sending me this trouble, I count it all joy to be going through this trial". Sometimes we have to have time to wallow around and feel the sorrow or feel the grief. It doesn't mean we aren't good Christians, or that we have lost our faith, it just means we aren't denying what we are feeling and what we are going through.

Follow this link to read Is Sorrow A Sin? by Tony Woodlief at WorldMag.com.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Mama Bear nature...

"God defend me from my friends; from my enemies I can defend myself."
This isn't entirely true, I do want Him to help me with the enemies also. But when I read this qoute it made me think of a situation that my daughter is facing now.


Why is it that girls can be so "catty" with other girls? What is it in girls that makes them see other girls as competition? I found this to be true when I was young, and apparently it hasn't changed. There are just some girls that can't rest unless they find someone (another girl) to try and destroy. Some girls are so insecure with themselves that they have to try to pull down other girls so they will feel better about themselves. And the ones that come as friends first to do it, really sicken me.

I am sure you know I am talking about someone my daughters age, of course I would love to be able to say it was my 13 year-olds peers acting in this childish way, but unfortunately, it is my almost 20 year-olds peers that are behaving in such a immature manner.

I am just appalled that people could act this way. I really should end this here, before I say something that I shouldn't say. Or something that I would regret. But when you see something unfairly being placed on your child, a mother's anger rises within and your instinct to protect your young from evil kicks in. Some people are really evil in their hearts. Sunday morning our assistant pastor read this scripture and I have thought on it all this week. It caused me to pray that God would search my heart, and purify my heart and my intentions. I want the inside to be reflected on the outside.
Matthew 23:24-6
24Ye blind guides, which strain at a gnat, and swallow a camel.
25Woe unto you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! for ye make clean the outside of the cup and of the platter, but within they are full of extortion and excess.
26Thou blind Pharisee, cleanse first that which is within the cup and platter, that the outside of them may be clean also.
It is true that no matter how good you look on the outside, if the inside is not clean it will defile the outward man.
A good man out of the good treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart bringeth forth that which is evil: for of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaketh.
I want my motives to be pure, I want to deal with people in an honest and pure manner. I don't want to be deceptive or deceitful in my dealings in life. I don't want to appear one way, and be another way in my heart. I have always tried to be honest and straight forward. What you see is what you get. I don't try to put a pretty spin on things or flower my words to flatter or win friends. I am who I am...like it or not.
I am easy going, I deal gently with people, and it takes a lot to get my Irish temper up. I try keep those things under the blood of Jesus. I try to forgive and realize that people are just people, and although we all fight battles with our human nature, they are each different battles. I try to give people the benefit of the doubt. I try to remember that if their slip of humanity and carnality is showing, that it doesn't necessarily mean they are bad people. They just haven't gained victory in that area yet. Maybe God is working on them, and I try to see the areas that God is still working on me and show the mercy to others that God shows to me.
But like I said, when it comes to your kids, that natural Mama Bear nature comes out. And it causes you to want to lash out against the enemy and the oppressor. I have had to really pray for the Lord to help me to over come those feelings lately. It hasn't been easy, I have wanted to speak out and "give someone a piece of my mind." But I wonder if I really have any to spare! So I tell it to God. The scripture says that "vengeance is mine, saith the Lord." So I have been praying a lot over this issue.
Proverbs 25:21-22
21If thine enemy be hungry, give him bread to eat; and if he be thirsty, give him water to drink:
22For thou shalt heap coals of fire upon his head, and the LORD shall reward thee.
I have always taught my children to hold your head up high, knowing the truth about yourself, and ignore foolish people who try to hurt you. If you ignore them, they eventually get tired, realizing that their efforts are failing and they move on to someone else. Because this is one thing I do know; if someone is being ugly to you, treating you badly, lying on you and trying to hurt you, you can be assured, you aren't the first one they have done it to, and you won't be the last. There are those who thrive on this kind of thing. They feed off of it, that is just who they are and what they have chosen to be. But you have to be bigger than they are and let God fight your battles. Because when God takes care of it, it is taken care of...No doubt.
I know this post is random and kind of different, but I needed to express somethings that are rolling around up there between my ears. This is an attack of the enemy, trying to bring doubt about the wisdom of letting Lauren stay behind. But I know that God is in control. I have faith in Him, and I have faith in her. I know she will rise above it, as long as she stays on her knees and stays humble before God. He will bless her in spite of those who are trying to destroy her. This is a test/trial that she must face in order to move into the next level in her walk with God.
God has something special for her, and the enemy is trying to steal it away.
Sometimes when in our journey to become an adult, we have to learn some lessons the hard way. I can tell her until I am blue in the face that there are some people that can't be trusted, some people will purposely try to hurt you; but until she experiences it herself, she will never fully understand.
It is hard to watch your child get hurt. Just as it is hard when they are two and they fall and scrap their knee until it bleeds. It is hard to let go and know that there will be more hurts and more bumps and bruises. When she was little and she got hurt, I would pick her up and love her, pray for her, and tell her it would be okay. Now, I pray for her, hug her, and encourage her, and remind her that it will be okay. I also remind her that I am here for her, I believe in her, and I know that God will take care of it if she will just walk with Him, dedicate herself to Him, and seek Him first above all things.
This life and its struggles and cares are but for a fleeting moment in the whole of eternity. We must not get caught up in the cares of life and allow the devil to distract us from our purpose; from God's ordained purpose for our lives. Most of all, we must not allow these things to find lodging in our hearts and cause us to lose out with God. So whatever it is, we must let it go, release it into God's care. He knows our struggles, He sees our battles, weaknesses, and our hearts. He knows where we live. His divine purpose is to make us into a vessel He can use, make us into His image. All the other is just stuff, just distraction from that purpose.
As I type this, I feel His peace filling my heart and mind. I feel His love surround me, I know He sees and knows. It is all in His hands...
Another battle won, another enemy defeated...Thank you Lord for your goodness and mercy in my life. Thank you for reminding me that you are faithful and you are the friend that stays closer than a brother.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Good Food Podcast

To busy to post today, but I didn't want to neglect the blog to much. I have added a podcast that I normally listen to every Sat while I am working. It is called Good Food. Hope you enjoy it. You will probably have to scroll down and stop the music playlist then click on the play button on the podcast to listen. Enjoy.

Here is a link to the Good Food website.

Friday, February 20, 2009

John C. Campbell Folk School...

Look what I found!





Click on the link above to see what an incredible place this is. And the great thing is, it is in North Carolina!! I so want to go here. I would love to go to so many of their classes! In fact, I would love to live near here and go all the time!!! Wouldn't it be so awesome to work in a place like this? Wow...



I ordered the catalog and have enjoyed just reading through it. In August they offer a weekend class called Learn to Play the Mountain Dulcimer.





I have a moutain dulcimer that I bought for myself when I was pregnant with Noah. We went to the Folk Festival in Mt View, Arkansas and I bought a dulcimer made there by McSpadden. I had always planned to take lessons, but you know how plans go astray. I have always loved the sound of the mountain dulcimer. I would love to go to this weekend to learn the basics of playing the dulcimer. Hopefully I will get to go.

This is similar to the one I have.

There are so many things I would love to go there to learn. I think this would be the greatest way to spend a vacation or even a weekend.


Wednesday, February 18, 2009

My latest ebay finds


If I haven't mentioned it here before, I love kitchen stuff. I call it stuff, because it really isn't anything that would be necessary to own. It just makes kitchen duties more enjoyable. I suppose you could say, I am a collector of sorts.

Yes, I know I talk about downsizing and getting rid of unnecessary things, and I am doing that. However, some things are just fun and are done for enjoyment. I don't spend money on recreational hobbies; no gym memberships, not a lot of eating out, no going to movies, or other things along that line, so I have to have a hobby. Well I have several, but not all at once. But I digress...

One hobby I have is going to flea markets and antique stores. I could spend hours browsing around. I just do a lot of looking, and occasional buying when it is the right item at the right price. But mostly I talk myself out of buying because of lack of room, and the frivolity of the item...I have my lists of reason, so I usually find one or two to use on such cases.

Recently I have become fascinated by Fire King items. I especially like the color Jadite. So I was browsing ebay and ran across a few items that I placed a bid on. These are the ones I won.




These are from Fire King Jane Ray collection. They are jadite in color.





These three bowls are FireKing also but they are turquoise in color. The smaller two are vegetable bowls and the larger one is a splash proof mixing bowl.


Here are my nesting bowls. They are new and never used.


I love the colors.




Andrew came home one evening and saw me looking at FireKing on ebay and while out running errands that evening he came home with these. He is such a wonderful, thougthful man!










Thanks honey, these are an invaluable tool for me so I can recognize a bargain when I run across one!

I still haven't talked myself into buying this, but maybe eventually I will...

Wordless Wednesday


Here's a great wordless Wednesday Post!


My Grandparents


Here is a photo of my grandparents, not to long after they married. The photo was taken in front of their home. She was twenty-seven and he was forty-seven. When I look at this photo, I try to imagine what they must have felt and thought about the life they planned together. I am sure they were thinking they would have many years ahead of them.



It has been brought to my attention that my post about My Grandma may be inaccurate. It is suggested that she was given the middle name of Ethel. If this was the case, my grandma denied it. She always said that she didn't have a middle name and one cannot be found on any documentation that we have. Even her social security card says Erette O. Gibson. So she used the initial of her maiden name O'neal when writing her name. As for as the spelling of Erette, I haven't seen a copy of her birth records, so I don't know what the official spelling was in 1912, but as far as what my grandma used, she spelled it Erette. So I have always known her as Erette O'neal Gibson or Mrs. H. M. Gibson.
If someone has a copy of her birth records, I would love to see them. I am very interested in all things family history related. But as with my own name, the spelling of a name is subject to interpretation. My birth certificate spelled my name with an extra r and an a on the end. But when I became an adult the spelling was changed to the current form, and it is written as such on all of my records and business documents with an e on the end. The same as with my grandma. So, the grandma that I knew referred to herself as Erette and with no middle name. As a child I even inquired about why she had no middle name, and she always responded the same way. She didn't know why she didn't have a middle name, she supposed they couldn't find something to go with her first name.

Whatever the case, she was best known to me as Mawmaw. And I remember many, many wonderful moments spent with her.

Many of my favorite memories revolve around being in the kitchen with her. I can recall when I lived down the road from her as a child, waking up early on Saturday mornings and riding my bike up to her house, or sometimes cutting through the field on foot. She would be in the kitchen making biscuits. She would always pinch off some dough and give it to me to roll my own biscuit. She would get an old tin pie plate and let me cook my biscuit in it. Although my biscuits always turned out lumpy and a little hard, hers were always perfect. When she would pull them out of the oven in that cast iron pan she cooked them in, they were devine.


The best thing in the world with Mawmaw's homemade biscuits was Steen's cane syrup. I would pour a puddle of that thick, sweet goodness into the middle of a plate and break up the biscuit into pieces around the syrup.
When I was very young, my great grandma O'neal would do that and she would ball up pieces of biscuit and make a "fence" around the syrup. Then we would drag a piece of biscuit through the syrup and eat it up. Wow! makes me hungry for some now.


There are so many other memories that give me that warm fuzzy feeling of home. My grandma had a little song that she taught me and my children. When I asked around no one else could remember it, but it went like this:



Have you ever been a fishin
on a warm sunny day
Have you ever seen those fishes
swim and play?
With your hands in your pockets
and your pockets on your pants
have you ever seen the fishes
do the hoochie coochie dance?
My grandma was a very special lady, that I miss dearly. I am thankful that I had the opportunity to have her in my life for forty years. I am thankful that all three of my children were able to see and know her. Even though Noah was two when she died, he had the chance to be loved by her.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

My Grandma

Her name was Erette O'Neal Gibson. She wasn't given a middle name, and she never liked her first name, so for most of her life she used her married name; Mrs. H.M. Gibson. Although she was only married four years before she became a widow.

In the photo above she is 43 years old. One year older than I am now...

She was born in 1912 in a place called Tillman, Louisiana. The place is no longer there, and hasn't been for many, many years. It was a mill town and when the mill was gone, so went the town.

She was the oldest of seven brothers and sisters. In a time when young women married and had children, she was twenty-seven before she married. She worked in other peoples homes and helped with the household duties and child care. In one such place, she met her husband.
He was a widower with seven living children. Only a few were still young enough to live at home. The older children had married or joined the military.

His name was Harvey Middleton Gibson and they married in January of 1940. In 1941 their first child was born, a daughter Betty. Then while expecting their second child, he became ill with bleeding ulcers, or possibly stomach cancer.
In May 1944 he was given a blood transfusion and died shortly after. Three months later their second child was born, a daughter, Brenda, my mother.

We called her Mawmaw. She was such a gentle woman. She tended toward the pessimistic side, but I suppose life circumstances seemed to slant her that direction. But she was a wonderful, loving grandma.

After the death of her husband she moved back into her family home with her parents. She would go at times to stay with other people and help in their homes, leaving her own children in the care of her parents. But in those times, in that place, her choices were limited.

I once asked her in my child-like way, why she had never re-married. I often wondered how different things would have been if she had re-married. She lived to be 94. Ninety years she wasn't married, only four she was, but in her mind she relived those four years over and over.

In her day, a girl dreamed of getting married and having a family. I suppose those were her dreams also. I know that she was disappointed when her dreams were taken from her. Yes, she had children, but without a husband she was stripped of much of the joy that went along with raising her children. I knew even as a child that there was a sadness about my grandma, I just didn't understand it until I got older. It is amazing how even without understanding that grief she carried, I harbored those feelings within myself. When I married, for years I feared that something would happen to Andrew. I feared that my life would mirror that of my grandma. It was only after ten years or more of marriage that I released that fear.

After her parents passing she remained in the family home. That home holds so many wonderful memories for me. That home was the one constant in my life. I knew that no matter what happened, I could go there and find love and acceptance and there would always been something on the stove to eat. I felt such comfort there.

My Grandma was many things; she was kind, gentle, good, meek, and a friend to many. She passed away June 27, 2007, quietly in her daughters home, just a few yards away from the home where she spent most of her life. At 94, it was only in the last few months of her life that she wasn't able to be alone at her home. Each time through the years that we would go back to Louisiana for a visit, on the morning we left, we would stop in to see her again. She would be in her kitchen, the smell of coffee in the air, cooking something. When the time came for us to go, she would follow us out onto her large front porch where we would hug and say our goodbyes. As we drove down the road she would stand there waving until we were out of sight.

When I close my eyes now, I can see her standing there in her duster or a long robe(depending on the weather), both arms in the air, waving goodbye...

Monday, February 16, 2009

Fruit of the Spirit


Years ago, after reading Galatians chapter 5, I begin to think about verses 22 and 23. I had read and heard these scriptures all of my life. As a child I memorized these verses in Sunday School, so this was not new to me in the least. But several years ago the Lord began to deal with me about these scriptures.


22. But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace,
longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,
23. Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law.


The first thing I noticed about this scripture is the word fruit. I had never noticed before that it was fruit, singular, instead of fruits, plural. A little thing? Maybe. I think in my mind I was visualizing these things; love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, and so on, as different fruits of the spirit. That would imply that you could go along and pick and choose which ones you preferred.


I was shopping the other day in the produce section at the market, trying to find healthy foods to offer my family, and I was browsing around at the various fruits on display. There were some there I had never tried, some I didn't even know what they were. This scripture was again brought to my attention. In the market I could choose the ones I like and the ones I thought my family might enjoy. There were some there that I didn't like, some I had never eaten, and really had no desire to try.


However, in the scripture we cannot pick and choose the ones that we like, they are one. If we are Christ's, if we walk in newness of life with Him, if we are one of His, we will be known by our fruit.


In John 15:16 Jesus teaches us that we are to bring forth fruit...


16 Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you,

and ordained you, that ye should go and bring forth fruit,

and that your fruit should remain: that whatsoever ye shall

ask of the Father in my name, he may give it you.


If we are His, called by His name, if we have His spirit living in us, we will produce fruit. That is a given, we are commanded to produce, or we will be pruned. In Matthew 3:10, John the Baptist tells us:


10 And now also the axe is laid unto the root of the trees: therefore every tree which bringeth not forth good fruit is hewn down, and cast into the fire.


There are many verses in the New Testament alone that talks of fruit and bearing fruit in the spirit. We are known by the fruit we bear. In Luke 6:43 we are reminded:


43 For a good tree bringeth not forth corrupt fruit; neither doth a corrupt tree bring forth good fruit.


The contents of our heart will be displayed by the fruit we bear. If God is in our heart, we will produce good fruit. If we are seekers of Him, If we desire to be like Him, then we will produce the good fruit.


In John 15:17 Jesus gives us the key to the fruit of the spirit when He says:


17 These things I command you, that ye love one another.



If there is love, true Christ-like love for others, then joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness and temperance will all exhibit themselves through your love. For if we have genuine love, we also have peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, and temperance. They all go together with LOVE.



Jesus tells us in John 13:34-35

34 A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.
35 By this shall all men know that ye are my disciples, if ye have love one to another.


If we are His true disciples, we will be known as such if we love one another as He loved us.


I once heard a preacher say that this scripture says: love one to another. He said that love for one another was a feeling, love to one another was an action. We should act on the love we feel by showing our love. We should act by doing for one another...

How is your love? Do you love others as God loves you? Do you have love one to another?

I have always prayed that God's love would shine through me, but now I feel compelled to pray that I can have a love like God's love, for(to) others. That I will love others, not just those I know, not just my family, or my friends, but that He will give me a love in my heart for all humanity...If I have love for them, or to them, then I can show joy toward others. I will have peace, and be peaceful with others. I will be longsuffering or patient in my dealings with others. I will be gentle and good to others. I will have faith and show faith in others. I will be meek and humble, not proud or haughty, feeling superior to others. I will also use temperance, constraint, or self-control when I deal with others. I will do unto others...I will show my fruit.
I know in my daily life I need God to help me to bear fruit. To show my fruit...


How is your fruit? Is your fruit showing? Is your life full of fruit, or like myself, are some of your branches barron, in need of pruning? I don't want to be hewn down like the scriptures says of trees that bring forth no fruit. I want to bring forth good fruit, I want to be known as His...


I am not trying to be "preachy", I am not saying this as someone who has it all figured out. I am expressing my thoughts and feelings. These are the things that I struggle with, areas where God is dealing with me. This blog is an expression of my daily life and struggles that I face. Just an on-line journal of sorts, that helps me to work out the things in my mind that need to be expressed and examined...


Saturday, February 14, 2009

Changes...

(Union Station-Chicago '08)
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.

(Navy Pier-Chicago '08)


Life is a process of becoming,

a combination of states we have to go through.
Where people fail is that they wish
to elect a state and remain in it.
This is a kind of death.





(Navy Pier-Chicago '08)

For everything you have missed,
you have gained something else,
and for everything you gain,
you lose something else
~Emerson~

Happy Valentines Day!

To my one an only love!



How Do I Love Thee?

by Elizabeth Barrett Browning

How do I love thee? Let me count the ways.

I love thee to the depth and breadth and height

My soul can reach, when feeling out of sight

For the ends of Being and ideal Grace.

I love thee to the level of everyday's

Most quiet need, by sun and candlelight.

I love thee freely, as men strive for Right;

I love thee purely, as they turn from Praise.

I love thee with the passion put to use

In my old griefs, and with my childhood's faith.

I love thee with a love I seemed to lose

With my lost saints, I love thee with the breath,

Smiles, tears, of all my life! and, if God choose,

I shall but love thee better after death.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Off to work I go...



I didn't post yesterday and I am not really posting today. I have been working at the post office... And I am drained right now. I want to go to bed so I can get a full nights sleep...like that will happen on a Friday night!





You have to understand that Friday nights aren't conducive for sleep around here. I work on Saturday's and for some unknown reason I can't ever get a full nights sleep on Friday nights. For one thing, Friday night is youth activity night at our church. So that means the girls are gone for the evening, and well into the night. Usually Lauren's group is doing something no where near where Megan's group is and at different times. So that means I usually have to take Megan, and go pick her up. Usually late...By the time we get back home, I get into bed and settle down, Noah gets restless and wakes up, or the dogs start barking at something...a car in the neighbors driveway, someone walking on the street, a squirrel that decides to take its life into its hands by coming down into our yard with three dogs...





For whatever reason, the dogs will bark, or a fire truck will go sloooowwwwwlllllyyyyyy by the house with its siren on...





Then if I am lucky, (I say this sarcastically, just in case you don't hear the sarcasm in my words), Lauren will come in before 2:00am and occasionally bring company. Don't get me wrong, I don't mind the company, but the walls in this house are paper thin. There must be nothing in between the wall boards at all, because I can hear every sound that is made in this house, especially when I am TRYING to get some sleep.





So once everyone is home safe and tucked into bed on Friday nights, I lie in bed thinking that I only have four hours left until I have to get up to go to work. So then I can't fall asleep, I am lying there wide away, thinking to myself how much I will regret this in the morning.





Then I hear Noah moving around in his room. His door will open and I will hear pitter-patter down the hallway. He will come climb in bed with Andrew and I. And when this happens there is no rest for anyone. He doesn't like to sleep right up next to anyone, so he will toss and turn, twist and move around until his head ends up at our feet, and his feet end up in our ribs and any other sensitive area of our bodies...





And all the while, I hear the clock ticking away, three more hours until the alarm goes off. (Not really ticking, I have an electric clock and there is no ticking, but I hear the minutes without sleep passing through my brain.)





At this point I began praying for sleep to come. I pray, thinking that maybe God has me awake to pray for someone. While praying, I fall asleep. Suddenly with an hour before my alarm clock is to sound the battle cry...I am bolted awake by the thud of the newspaper hitting the front door. I can envision my paper guy throwing the paper as hard as he can, pretending it is a missile and his target is me. It is payback for a car blocking him from easily pulling through our circle drive. Instead, someone, usually Lauren or one of her friends, has parked their car to far into the middle of the drive and he will have to pull in and then back out the way he came into the driveway. For this he will hit the door loudly with the rolled up paper so that it will wake me from the little slumber I am getting...





I am sure that he doesn't really do that, but at 5:00 in the morning, when I am trying to piece together four hours of sleep for the night, these are the thoughts I have about our paper guy.





I imagine that he is a little angry that he has to be out so early delivering papers to people who are lying in bed sleeping and he is going to make sure that if he has to be up "BY GOD, everyone else will be also."





So now, it is only minutes until my alarm will sound, telling me it is morning, time to rise and shine...





Because you know that unofficial motto of the post office:





"Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night stays these couriers from the swift completion of their appointed rounds"






As I drag myself out of bed and face the long tedious day ahead, I am thinking;




"if I can just get home this evening, I am going to shower


and go straight to bed."




But we all know about good intentions. As much as I try not to drink caffeine or carbonated beverages, after a night like that, I have to stop at Sonic and get that large glass of Dr Pepper just to get my brain to function. And I have to follow it up with another one at lunch, and one on the route, just so I don't drag at the end of my work day. So by the time I get home, I am exhausted, from hard work, and the lack of sleep, not to mention the roller coaster of the caffeine high I have put my body through and the jolt I have enjoyed all day, has left me completely drained of every ounce of energy and I am riding that long spiral down, down, down...




I must interject this little tid-bit of information here. If you have never been a mail carrier, you just don't appreciate what mail carriers have to do. Yes, I know, I used to be just like you. I was so critical of my mail carrier if he did the least thing wrong. But like they say; until you've walked a mile in someones shoes... It is a physically and mentally demanding job. I never knew the extent of it, until I started doing it. Wow! I don't think I would want to do this until I was 60...I don't think my body could hold up to it.




I'm not saying this just to elicit sympathy, I know there are many other jobs that are as much or more demanding...but I've never worked one. I've had quite a broad resume in my lifetime, and I have to say, this one wears me out more than any of the other jobs I have had. Of course, a good nights sleep would probably go a long way in helping me to meet the challenges of the job. Wonder were I could get a good nights sleep...




All of this may be coming to an end anyway...I am working on a transfer to a post office in North Carolina, but if it doesn't happen, well I probably won't lose any sleep over it...




No pun intended...




Well, looks like I ended up posting after all. Just remember these are the words of a sleep depraved postal worker...those famous words that we aren't allowed to say anymore...




If I don't get some sleep, I just might go POSTAL....


Just watch out, because I will be out there tomorrow, driving one of these...




Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Joys of Childhood

One little ritual that Noah and I have when getting in and out of the car at night, we always look for the moon and talk about the stars. Many times we will recite "twinkle, twinkle little star."

Recently we came home from church one night and while getting him out of his car seat, I told him to look at the moon. It was a waning crescent moon and a very cloudless night so it was clearly seen.

Noah looked up at he moon and said, "Momma, the moon is broken, we need to fix it."


Oh the joy of childhood innocence!

Reminds me of a poem by Billy Collins. For those of you who have read my blog for a long time, you will know that I am a Billy Collins fan. Some people don't get him, but I so get his---I hesitate to say sense of humor--because it is poetry, but I suppose it would be his thought processes...

My favorite is Forgetfulness.(click on the link to read) But there are others that I equally enjoy.

The following is about a child aging and understanding the changes taking place in their life. But it is only the beginning...


On Turning Ten

The whole idea of it makes me feel

like I'm coming down with something,

something worse than any stomach ache

or the headaches I get from reading in bad light--

a kind of measles of the spirit,

a mumps of the psyche,

a disfiguring chicken pox of the soul.

You tell me it is too early to be looking back,

but that is because you have forgotten

the perfect simplicity of being one

and the beautiful complexity introduced by two.

But I can lie on my bed and remember every digit.

At four I was an Arabian wizard.

I could make myself invisible

by drinking a glass of milk a certain way.

At seven I was a soldier,

at nine a prince.

But now I am mostly at the window

watching the late afternoon light.

Back then it never fell so solemnly

against the side of my tree house,

and my bicycle never leaned against the garage

as it does today,

all the dark blue speed drained out of it.

This is the beginning of sadness,

I say to myself,

as I walk through the universe in my sneakers.

It is time to say good-bye to my imaginary friends,

time to turn the first big number.

It seems only yesterday I used to believe

there was nothing under my skin but light.

If you cut me I could shine.

But now when I fall upon the sidewalks of life,

I skin my knees.

I bleed.

~Billy Collins ~

Monday, February 9, 2009

Little boy blue

I took little man to the doctor today and he has bronchiolitis. Which is basically a viral infection in the bronchial area. He had to take a breathing treatment at the dr's office and she prescribed an inhaler to use ever four hours as needed. I gave him his first treatment at home this evening and it has really made him hyper. I hope it wears off before time for bed. Three nights now have been restless with little sleep for any of us.

Please pray that he will get well soon.

Nothing else going on here. I am pretty exhausted and my mind isn't working to well at the moment so I better hush before I say something completely off the wall and really scare ya!

I will end with a couple quotes.
Thought for Today
Before I got married I had six theories about bringing up children; now I have six children and no theories.

All children are artists. The problem is how to remain
an artist once he grows up.
~Pablo Picasso~

I love people. I love my family, my children . . . but inside myself is a place where I live all alone and that's where you renew your springs that never dry up

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Seeking God's Will finding; God's Purpose and His blessings...

We had a wonderful service this morning at church. Bro. Weeks from Georgia was visiting and preached a wonderful sermon. It was titled: The Resurrection of Your Witness. It had to do with your life being a witness for God. It had special meaning for me. I have been praying for God to give me a peace about the decision we made to leave here. I have worried about it on so many levels...I often grapple with fulfilling God's purpose in my life. And for the last few years, I feel like I haven't been doing that. I feel as though I have been dormant in my walk with God. That I haven't been doing what I was called to do. I feel like a Caterpillar in a cocoon. But I have realized that, it isn't that I was sitting down on God, but God was doing a work on me, changing me into a vessel He could use.

When we have moved in the past, I always knew that God was there in the move. I knew that He was sending us where we needed to be to accomplish something He had for us to do. I struggled with the decision to leave Louisiana in 2000. I worried about being out of God's will. I prayed and sought God's will in the move. One night while sitting in church, our pastor at the time, Bro Robertson read a scripture for his text that night, and while standing there in that service, God gave me the peace that I had sought. I knew without a doubt that God was in it and we were going where God wanted us to be. He had opened that door. And I have always known that we were right where He needed us to be.

When coming to Little Rock four years ago, I felt God's tug for us to stay here. And things fell into place, Andrew got a job with a local company and we stayed. I knew there was a reason.

Little did I know then that those years would be years of testing and trial...

God brought us here for that purpose, He was doing a work in me, and I am sure in our family. I can only testify to what God has done in my life. Although the testing and trials haven't been easy, at times the load was so heavy, and I questioned the purpose. I know it was sent by God. Like the song says, "I never lost my faith".

There were times when I was so heavy and laden in the trial, that I could hardly hold myself upright. There were times I would go to church, and sit...and if you have ever been to any of our services you would understand that just sitting is a hard thing to do. But I would just sit and soak in the presence of God. I knew He was there, I saw Him moving among the people around me, but I was dry...I was in the trial. I was in the desert, the dry place. We all must go through them in this journey with God. But because of my strong faith, and because I have been in the journey so long, I knew God was there. I knew that God would never leave nor forsake me, no matter the trial, no matter how rough it got. Even when I couldn't feel Him there, I had faith that He was, and He was. I never doubted that God would eventually see me through, but none of us like to experience the pain that goes along with those times of testing and trial. I never lost faith, or thought of turning back, God has been to good to me. I never thought of turning away from God; where would I have gone?? Like I said earlier, I have been walking this journey to long, I've seen God do to much in my life and the lives of others around me. I've come to far to turn around now.

There were little things along the way. I like to call them little tokens of His love, that came my way, enough to keep me going, knowing they were sent from God just for me. Things that would only mean something to me. Things that God knew, I would realize were His doing.

I told God,

"God you could take this trial, you could make it go away with just a word."
God said to me in the still small way of His;
"Yes, I could speak to it and it would end, but I won't, because you have to go through this to get to where I want you to be. You must go through it...but I will be with you."
God's grace is sufficient. It is always enough!
He brought us through and I look back from the other side now, and I see what God was doing, I see why He brought me to this place. I had to go through it to get to this place I am today. It isn't anything that I can explain or put into words. My heart is full as I think on the blessing of God in my life. All the times He has been there, and faithful.
You never know what someone is going through. You never know the load someone is carrying. And if you have never been there, you don't recognize it. It is something that only experience brings. When you meet someone, or see someone, you don't know what they are carrying or where they are on this journey. If they are in the desert, or in lush green pastures. You need to be sensitive to those around you, the people you meet, the people God brings into your life. I believe that no one crosses our path accidentally. If you are sensitive and aware, God brings people into your life for a purpose.
God places you throughout your life in the places He wants you to be, where you can reach someone. Where you can encourage or help someone else. Until you have been through the fire, until you have experienced that place where you were just searching for a word, something, anything, just to know God hadn't forgotten where you were... until you have been there, you can't understand.
Recently God blessed me with the opportunity to be a blessing to someone. When God showed me this opportunity, at first, like so many times, I tried to find a reason that this wasn't God, but just me thinking these thoughts. You know, I tried to argue that maybe it wasn't God tell me to do this, but just my imagination...
Anyway, I told God,
"You know God, when I was going through a similar trial, I prayed for someone to come along and bless me this way, and no one did."
I am embarrassed to admit that I actually said that to God, but you know human nature.
And
in that still small, patient voice, God spoke to my spirit:
"I was the one that helped you, so you could do this for someone else. You can answer that prayer for someone else."
God wanted me to be a willing vessel to see someone elses need and do something about it.
Once again, I was blown away, I had to repent to God. My spirit was instantly aware that God had brought me through that place for a time like this. I said yes God I will do it. Just say the word, I will do it...And I did, and still am doing it when God directs. And you can't know just how God has blessed me because I was willing to say Yes...
These last few years of trial and testing; going through the fire...It was all worth it, because now I see. Now I understand. God wants to use me in a way that I was afraid to be used in the past. I had to get victory over my fears in a certain area of my life.
I trusted Him through the trial, the testing, the dry times, in times of drought. Now I have to trust Him with the harvest, I have to trust Him in the times of plenty; with the blessing. Knowing that the blessing comes from Him, and I need to be a vessel for that blessing to flow through, to others...It has to flow. You can't let it get stopped up, or you cut your own supply off.
Back to the service this morning; I once again got conformation from God that yes, indeed, He had opened this door that we are about to walk through. But I know that it is for a purpose, not just because it was a better job with more opportunity, but a purpose in the spiritual. And the message this morning was directed right to me. The last few years, while going through this trial, God was working on me, so that I would be ready and able to be used by Him.
They sang this song at the end of the message that has always been my hearts song...
Lily of the valley
Let your sweet aroma fill my life
Rose of sharon show me
How to grow in beauty
In God's sight
Fairest of ten thousand
Make me a reflection of your light
Daystar shine down on me
Let your love shine through me
In the night
Lead me, Lord, I'll follow
Anywhere you open up the door
Let your word speak to me
Show me what I've never seen before
Lord, I want to be a witness
You can take the wrong and make it right
Daystar shine down on me
Let your love shine through me
In the night
Lord, I see a world that's dying
Wounded by the master of deceit
Groping in the darkness
Haunted by the years of past defeat
But then I see you standing near me, Lord
Shining with compassion in your eyes
I pray Jesus shine down on me
Let your love shine through me
In the night
Lead me, Lord, I'll follow
Anywhere you open up the door
Let your word speak to me
Show me what I've never seen before
Lord, I want to be a witness
You can take the wrong and make it right
Daystar shine down on me
Let your love shine through me
In the night
Daystar shine down on me Let your love shine through me
In the night
Jesus shine down on me
Let your love shine through me
In the night
God, once again, gave me that peace. Knowing that He is with me and His love and grace are sufficient. And although I can't see the whole journey ahead, all I need is enough light for each step of the way, knowing that He is holding my hand and leading me.
I look back over the last few years, and now I understand...It all makes sense...
Thanks for letting me share just a little piece of what is on my heart today. I could fill books with the things of God and what He's done for me. There are so many things God has done in my life.
God is good---ALL the time...

Friday, February 6, 2009

I have nothing...


Like this empty bowl, I have nothing today... I am empty. I have nothing useful to share...
Noah has been sick and running a fever. We all know how it is when a little one is sick. It has been a quiet day, full of sitting around and holding little man. I haven't done any profound thinking, or contemplating the universe; its existence nor that of my own.
I did start reading Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott. It is required reading for Lauren's English course in college. So I picked it up to read also. I think I may have read some of it before at another time.
I use to work in a library and read as much as I could during that time. I have always been an avid reader. I use to wish as a kid that I had some sort of machine that I could hook up to my brain and go through the library or a bookstore and absorb all the information in all the books instantly...I have always been like a kid in a candy store when I go to the library. Always checking out stacks of books at a time. Always more than any human could read in the allotted time. They were always due back before I could even get half way through them. I like fiction, but I really like non-fiction. I have scanned and read parts of so many books in my life time and stored up so much knowledge, if I could just retrieve it all...
But the problem is my computer memory is a little slow, and I can't seem to recall all of the facts about a particular thing that I read.
I do love reading...
Another thing I have started doing is checking out books on cd. So often I am busy and can't take time to sit down and read a book, but I am in the car a lot going here and there, so I will listen to the book on cd. I usually always have one going in my car all the time. The problem is, sometimes I just have to ride around to finish a chapter. Especially if it is a rather interesting book, I don't want to stop, so I sometimes drive into the drive way and just sit there listening until it comes to a place I can turn it off. I rarely listen to them at home. I don't really want to walk around the house with ear buds in my ears. I do that at work however. That is the one good thing about working like I do, while at the PO I can listen to my ipod while I work. I do the same while out on the route. I do listen to quite a diverse bit of things on the ipod. I love to download podcasts from itunes. I hear cooking programs, news programs, political and educational podcasts. I listen to crafting, sewing, and knitting podcasts, travel podcasts and health related podcasts. I have such a diverse interest that I could listen all day and not get bored. I actually rarely listen to music...
Speaking of diverse interest...
I read this very interesting blog the other day about a lady that went to a counselor and found out that she has a scanner personality. This piqued my interest, because she sounded so much like me...
She recommended a book by Barbara Sher called Refuse to Choose where she talks about the Scanner personality. I so identified with this. I think I have discovered why I am the way I am...
I finally found my excuse...
I am currently reading I Could do Anything If I Only Knew What It Was by Barbara Sher and I have her other book, Wishcraft How to Get What You Really Want.
Last year sometime I listened to It's Only Too Late If You Don't Start Now: How to Create Your Second Life at Any Age also by Barbara Sher. So now I am looking for this new one Refuse to Choose so I can finally validate the reason I am like this...
If you think you would like to find out more here is Barbara Sher's website.
So, I only thought I had nothing today...
But once I start typing, things just pour out. Useful things? Maybe not...But things in their own right. Maybe this blog is just a place to purge. All this stuff floating around in my brain, and I start typing and all the random knowledge I have filled my head with all these years just starts spilling out everywhere. Yes, it sometimes is messy, and disorganized. Sometimes it comes out in a jumble and may only make sense to me, and sometimes, not even to me...
But for what it is, it is that...
I really enjoy sitting down each day, when I can, and spilling out all the contents of my brain for your enjoyment...
No, this really isn't ALL the contents of my brain, I don't want to scare anyone away, so I will keep some thoughts to myself...those thoughts or in a journal hid under the mattress or maybe not, maybe in a drawer or in the bread box...I will never tell...
I just hope before I am to far gone with Alzheimer's, I remember to destroy the journals so my children aren't force to read them and finally have the proof for what they have feared---that their mother really was loony....Just kidding...

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Hobby Farm HOME

If you don't regularly read this magazine, then you are missing out on so much! You don't have to live on a farm to enjoy it! There are so many things this magazine has to offer everyone. I discovered it when we lived on our mini farm and I continue to buy it every time a new one comes out. This issue has a great article on Ironstone China for those of you like myself that love nothing better than perusing antique stores and flea markets for kitchenware.

I always love reading about all things farm related, because my dream is to eventually have another small farm. I miss my goats, chickens and rabbits. In the meantime, I can read and learn all I can about those things I love. This magazine along with Hobby Farms, and Mother Earth News are my favorites.

I just love this magazine!! Did I happen to mention that already?

But I don't want to be pirate...

My husband is telling me that I am going to have to buy a new vehicle...

But I don't want to get a new vehicle!

Normally, in my previous life, I would have raced out immediately looking for a new ride. But that was the old me, the before I simplified my life, me. Before I opened my eyes to the reality of the myth of the "American dream", me. That me, was racing through my life, trying to accumulate stuff, because we all know that the more stuff you have the happier you are, Right?

That was the me that just thought that car notes were something to be expected, the me that sought part of my identity through my possessions. Shallow you say, yes, I suppose I was shallow, along with millions of other Americans... But I am shallow no more! I have seen the light, opened my eyes, and realized there is a whole world of peace and joy and happiness without all of the---stuff. This is the me that could care less what the Jones' do, who are these Jones' people anyway? And why did I want to keep up with them???


Anyway, this me, the me that discovered the ***key to real happiness, and peace in my natural life, is fighting the prospect of buying a new vehicle. I happen to love "old Blue". She has been a great vehicle. And the best part about her is she is paid in full. For a year now we have been car note free...all four of our vehicles are debt free. I just don't want to think of throwing away good money on a vehicle, when I have a perfectly good one now that belongs to me... and no car note. Why would I want to give away a three hundred or so dollars a month just to drive a vehicle. Never mind the money for insurance and gas...When "old Blue" runs just fine and gets me where I need to go...and I don't have to pay someone to drive it...I did that already and now she is mine...debt free...


I do admit that Old Blue is a bit aged, she is a 1998 model. That makes her over ten years old. And she has over 100,000 miles on her...(which isn't much considering her age). If it weren't for the fact we were moving 900 miles away from my oldest child, I would never consider buying a new one. However, I know that old Blue won't make to many trips back and forth without trouble. Hard highway driving wouldn't be good for her. I will need to have a vehicle that I can depend on to travel many highway miles, because most of the time it will only be Megan, Noah and myself on the highways alone. Andrew will be working and unable to make many trips back and forth. Due to this reason, and this reason alone, I am consenting to look for a new vehicle. However, we have agreed to sell Blue and the jeep and put everything we get for them toward the purchase of the new one, so we can knock down some of the debt off the top.


Now I have to do some research and decide what kind of vehicle I want. My tendency is toward Ford's, I have always had good luck with a Ford. I have owned a Mustang, an Expedition, and two Explorers, along with a couple of Ford trucks, and a Ford Mini-Van. Never a problem with any of them. They were all great vehicles. I know I want an SUV, I need the space, and I don't really want a mini-van, but I don't want a gas guzzler either. Yes, the car I really want is a Harvest Moon Beige convertible Beetle, but, I don't think that would work well with two kiddo's and traveling, so I will forgo the Beetle for now.



But isn't it so cute? I can see me in that. It would get great gas mileage!






If you know anyone looking for a great older Ford Explorer that would be great for running around town and will probably last another 100,000 miles with a little care, send them my way, I'll give 'em a good deal.


***The key to real happiness and peace in my natural life is living a more simplified life and enjoying what I have. I hate to use catchy phrases that so often or over used in our society. However, I have adopted one that I hear a lot lately.

Use it up, wear it out, or do without!

I kind of like that concept. I read an article recently that said,


Live with what you love, and get rid of the rest!
I think that will be my mantra while I am getting ready for this move. If I don't love it, it goes...
mmm...someone have a dump truck I could borrow to haul off this stuff?

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


This is me this week. I have so many things that I need to be doing preparing for the move, but I just feel so tired. I feel like there is this looming thing hanging over me, and I have got to find that box of energy that I have store up---somewhere around here, so I can start the moving process.
We are going the first of next month to find a place to live, then come home and get ready for the movers to come. But there are so many things that need to be gone through and a decision made about what to do with them.
Hopefully the weather will get better and I can get into the garage to go through some boxes, totes, and shelves to decide what is going to North Carolina, what is going to Louisiana into storage, and what is just GOING...
So thoughts of moving and all the things that go alone with that are filling my waking thoughts. Of course, like with many major events in our lives, it is also filling some of my sleeping hours as well. Maybe that is why I am so tired.
I am working on the Family Journal. I am writing an outline for the journal entries and I am working on the introduction portion of the journal. I am going to try to get my part completed before I actually move, so I can start sending it out to others to work on. So if you haven't contacted me about it please do so. I appreciate all that are willing to participate with this project.
I will end with these quotes:
Today's Thoughts
There are no shortcuts to life's greatest achievements
~Anonymous ~
Periods of tranquility are seldom prolific of creative achievement. Mankind has to be stirred up
~Alfred North Whitehead~
To know just what has to be done, then to do it, comprises the whole philosophy of practical life
~Sir William Osler ~

Monday, February 2, 2009

Happy Birthday Little Brother!

Thirty-Five years ago yesterday, February 1, 1974, this handsome little guy made his big entrance into this world. He was welcomed by his parents and his very excited sister. For 19 years he was a delight to all of us. He was a wonderful little brother!
Happy Birthday little brother! I sure miss you. I know your in a much better place. But my heart still aches at your absence.

It seemed unfair when you were taken from us so young. You were just becoming an adult, you had so much ahead of you. You would be thirty-five now. I don't know why that drunk driver had to be on highway 10 that night, at that time, in that curve. I don't know why it seems like the innocent suffer and the guilty go on to live out their sorry lives...hurting more people and spreading evil...I don't know why you died that March night on the side of that road, and the careless, thoughtless, selfish person who wasn't concerned about anything but having a good time, getting drunk and partying, survived.

It seems so unfair! But I know that God was there that night, He was in control, and although it grieved His heart to see someone throwing their life away like Garry Fox was doing, He cared enough for you. You were His child, someone that loved Him and lived for Him, someone who was a light to all that knew him. God was there to bring you home to live eternally with Him.

He was merciful in the taking; you didn't suffer, your body was left in almost perfect condition, you looked so handsome...just as though you had just gone to sleep, and stepped into glory!

In my mind, I imagine all of our family that has gone on before, waiting there to welcome you home. As I imagine you doing for the ones who have come after you. I know Mawmaw was so happy to join you there. She grieved so much for you!

Daren, I miss you so very much, even more as the years go by...

You were such a sweet brother...I wish I could have just five minutes with you, to tell you just how much I love you, how wonderful it was to have you as a brother. I know I wasn't always the best sister to you. The teen years were crazy ones and I didn't always see that the most important people were my family, and not my friends or the "cool" crowd. I know that later you understood that in your own life.

You were such a blessing to all of us who had the opportunity to know you, and so many people have told us since you've been gone, just what a blessing you were to them. We all still miss you. In a few weeks it will be sixteen years without you. In a few years, you will have been gone, longer than you were here. But the impact you made will live on and on...

I just wanted to wish you a Happy Birthday and tell you just how much I love and miss you!
Although in heaven, you don't have to worry about birthday's or getting older, but each year that passes we will always mark with joy, the day you came into our lives and will always remember with great sadness the day you left...

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