encouragement, family bonds, health, love, positive reinforcement

what I like about you….

So often in life we find ourselves focusing on what we don’t like in others or ourselves. The negative is the forefront of our thoughts and views. In the past, I’ve found myself criticizing myself and others, when they don’t stand up to certain standards.

One thing I try to make a conscious effort to do is to focus on the positives in those around me and myself. They’re much more enjoyable to recognize and acknowledge. I even go as far as mentioning one thing to a person. One small thing to someone, that I like about them. It may be silly to some, but I feel if I can acknowledge one attribute or characteristic in someone…maybe they’ll see something positive in someone else too. It kind of lends a hand in positive thinking.

For example…the other day, after my sister handed me a piece of gum, I said, “You know, one of the many things I like about you is your generosity. Every time you get yourself a piece of gum, you always offer one to me.” She started laughing, but thought it was really sweet too. She thanked me for pointing that out. Now every time she hands me gum or a mint, I just smile and wink at her. It’s kind of a little joke between us.

That is a silly example of ‘the what I like about you’ plan, but if you’re struggling with someone in your life. Maybe a boss, maybe a co-worker, or spouse…I encourage you to focus on something positive you can speak to them about. Don’t we all get enough negative everyday? Aren’t you tired of talking about the negatives in life? Find ONE thing that you want to give kudos to and tell them…..’you know…one of the many things I appreciate about you is __________’

Just fill in the blank. Making someone feel better about themselves is the best gift you can give them, and trust me it’s a gift that will pay you back.

ice storm, travel

The ice storm keep comineth’

The ice storm keep comineth’
Current mood: cold

Okay, after a state of emergency has been declared for the state of OK, due to last weeks ice storm…more is predicted to come this weekend.

It is actually nice to look around and see all the white, until the slipping and sliding of my car redirects my attention to my task at hand–driving. Of course, it’s never the controlled careful drivers to watch out for, like myself. It’s just that there aren’t that many of those on the road.

As if driving on that stuff, isn’t bad enough…now you have to watch for flying ice from the tops of semi’s. I got hit, rather nailed, this week on the hood of my car with a big sheet of thick ice. Thank the Lord, it barely missed my windshield. I would have been toast.

Yesterday the ice melted (slightly). By 5 pm, when the sun (what little there was) was going down, it became worse than before. The sludge wasn’t enough to give us traction….b/c it kept moving around and making our tires slide around in it. Then after 5 pm, it froze into irregular tire patterns, that kept us all guessing where to drive. There weren’t solid tracks anymore.

We’re supposed to get up to 10″ more this weekend. Keep us in your prayers.

Ps….Vanilla Ice’s song ‘ice ice baby’ keeps playing in my head….make it stop!!!!

faith, love, miracles, prayer

Blind faith

I want to encourage you all, that are struggling with the concept of God’s love, to let go of your objections for one second. For one second think about the flip side. What if there is a God, who sent his son to save us from our sins? What if there was an all powerful being, in heaven, preparing a place for you — if you’d only receive him?

I’m not going to break out scripture for you, as I’m not a pastor. I’m not a thumper who forces something down other’s throats. I’m not a zealot who thinks everyone who doesn’t do what I say is going to hell.

I’m am not worthy to judge anyone for their choices or lifestyle. I am someone, however, who has experienced God’s awesome love. Someone who has received many blessings in life, that can’t be explained other than them being from God and his son, Jesus Christ.

Blind faith is a hard concept to swallow, especially for those who have to see to believe. Think about this….

There are those, who, believe that there is no afterlife. They believe we just evaporate into the cosmos. Or they believe we’re reborn into another life form. Okay? I acknowledge that they have a right to their beliefs. God gives them the free will to choose their path.

BUT…what if they’re wrong and God’s word is the truth? A truth that gives them everlasting life, for those that ask him in their heart. A truth that judges those, who choose not to belief and live with him in their hearts and lives. And the consequence for the non believers? well, simply put: hell.

Even if I hadn’t experienced God’s powerful will in my life, and understood his presence in my heart I wouldn’t believe in him as much as I do. Each tragedy and triumph he’s brought me through has strengthened my faith in him. For non-believers, I wouldn’t want to think about the consequences. If I were a non-beleiver and was on the fence, what would my choice be? Choosing that I’d absorb in the cosmos, or reincarnation, or going to hell? If I’m right and hell is real…wouldn’t you want to give your life some thought?

Blind faith is hard to swallow but those that do it…those that take that leap of faith, will see a difference…not immediately. God’s timing is not always our own. We want things now…immediate gratification. God does bless us in his perfect timing. We just have to keep our faith in him, through rough time and good ones. For one second, think about the truth in his word. He will be with us throughout life. He does NOT promise an easy life. Man has free will to choose his path…and that means bad things will happen. He will be there to support you along the way though…to carry you when you can’t walk any longer. Without the valleys, those mountains wouldn’t be as beautiful! Jesus aches to bring you to safety….if you only ask and listen. Listen to the soft whisper in your heart. If your conscience is pushing you to go to church, to read the bible, to pray…remember that it is his voice speaking to you.

For one second take time to reflect on your life. If you died today, what would happen to you? God wants you to indefinitely know the answer without a doubt. He want’s you to know that you’d be in heaven.

family bonds, ice storm, motherhood, travel

home bound

outside night shot of ice storm 2007

The ice has continued to come, day after day. They say it may stop tomorrow and move past Oklahoma for good, but the weather will not warm up any time soon. So needless to say, it will still be dangerous to tread out for the rest of the week. Although it’s a beautiful sight, I am ready to venture out soon. The three of us are home bound and we’re running out of things to do. I’m just glad we haven’t gotten on each other’s nerves. (knock on wood…or ice)

My parents are supposed to fly in on Tuesday, after a 10 day cruise from a summerlike enviroment. Man are they in for a shock. People are getting stranded in airports right and left. I’m sure their flight will come in safely. It’s just a matter of getting them home.

This blanket of ice is deceiving. It looks like snow…fresh and pure, until you drive on it and slip and slide across the road. For those of you who don’t have to get out, please stay safe at home. If you need some interesting ideas to keep you busy, here’s a list of things we’ve found to keep ourselves occupied: (keep in mind I have a three year old)

Turn the lights out and play with flashlights
Make cookies
Get out the playdough or moonsand (that lasted for 2 1/2 hours today)
Read books
Clean house (my sister deep cleaned her whole place)
Do Laundry
Get in the kitchen and create culinary surprises
Create an art masterpiece
and if all else fails….get out some movies….

ice storm, travel

7 hour road trip on the ice

Thursday the 11th, I had to travel to Dallas for an awards banquet I was invited to through work. Only a select few were invited, based on their preformance in 2006. Being new to the company, I was honored to be invited.

HOWEVER…bad weather was due to strike and I wasn’t looking forward to traveling. But since when am I at ease leaving my family and traveling? When I was younger and had no one at home depending on me, I loved to be on the road. IT rocked! But now, it’s a little different.

I have to say that I had a great time! We had a cozy group of about 45 people from our region. It was a private catered dinner at our Regional Manager’s loft/condo in the ritzy, trendy part of big D. And then we went on his rooftop to toast our success and the new year with a round of champagne toasts. We all said a little, and gave our thanks to those that have helped us achieve our milestones in our career. Hip Hip Horah!

Driving home today was no fun at all. What would normally take 3 to 3 1/2 hours took 7 long tedious hours. It wasn’t icy in Texas yet, but it was pouring rain so hard that we couldn’t see the road. The second we crossed the state line, we noticed the temperature drop. And about 40 miles into our great state of Oklahoma, it got severe. Our windshield iced over, and the roads went from wet to slippery in an instant. Many cars slid into ditches.

Everyone sane was driving between 35-40 miles per hour. However, there were a few kooks that sped down like it was Indy. They would have liked to have almost killed us all. The semi’s flew down the road just as fast. What drugs are those guys on that they think they can keep on truckin’ in a major ice storm?

Anyway, I’m just glad to be home safe and sound. My son told me that he and daddy prayed for me to travel safe. He wanted to know all about my trip. I told him I had to call 911 for someone who slid off the highway and down a big hill. So he thought that was pretty amazing. All is well and thank you to all of you who texted me on the road to check up on me.

Love to you all!

faith, health, love, motherhood

health matters

I’ve been very blessed with a very healthy child. Although he used to have severe food allergies, that landed an ambulance at our house a time or two, he has a very strong immune system. In his three years, I can count on one hand how many times we’ve had any major health issues. Lucky for him, he comes from good stock. Not that I’m comparing my family to cattle, but my side of the family just isn’t prone to the flu or anything more than a little congestion or hayfever. Don’t get me wrong, cancer is rampant in my family on both sides…but they only affected the older members when they were past the age of 85.

Today however, I woke up with the sounds of my son screaming for me to come to his room and then puking. I’ve not dealt with him in this state yet. How crazy is that? He’s going to be 4 and he’s yet to be hit with any big projectile issues. Needless to say, I instantly called my mom to make sure I remembered the drill on how to take care of him…but I forgot she was on a cruise for 2 weeks with my dad. Crappy timing, but I handled it just fine. Being a caretaker runs in my blood and by noon, he was ready for a chocolate and a pound of salami. It was like pulling teeth to get him to settle on bland white foods like saltines, apple sauce, tapioca pudding, and jello, but he’s a good kid. He tried a few times to get his way, but quickly realized it wasn’t going to happen.

He and I haven’t had a full night’s sleep in 2 weeks. We both are prone to wake up at the drop of a hat, and have trouble getting back to a full R.E.M. So I pray tonight we all get a peaceful sleep.

Thank the Lord, my son bounces back quickly!

family bonds, love, motherhood

Manual for Motherhood

No one ever really prepares you for being a parent. The standard phrase I got when I was pregnant was, “Oh get your sleep now while you can!” or they might say, “Good luck you’re going to need it!”

Even the important people in my life never truly passed on enough wisdom for me to have a handle on how it’s supposed to work. I always wondered why there wasn’t a handbook that will tell you things like:

When your son in potty trained, stay alert. He’ll still shoot the pea out between the lid and the toilet when he sits down. Have a rag handy for quick catches!

or

No matter how hard you try to get your child to sleep through the night (and they finally do)…..don’t relax just yet. Then the nightmare phase is coming and it starts all over again.

All I have to say is thank God for my mom. She may not have had any written instructions for me but she taught me the basic foundation by example. OH yes, she usually had her ‘gems of wisdom’ that would always come in handy at the exact moment I needed them, but for the most part she taught me to like myself for who I am. She inspired me to try hard at what ever I did and if I messed up….start over. She pushed me to step outside my box and take a few leaps of faith. And, she taught me that I can do whatever I want to…as long as I treat others the way I’d want to be treated along the way.

My mom was and is the epitomy of God’s love. Looking back, with some experience in her shoes now…I see how tired she was. How frustrated she got…..and how perfect she was even when I thought she was the most horrible person in the world for not giving me “MY” way.

So only having 3 1/2 years of motherhood, I’ve learned a few things the hard way. I still have no idea about a lot, but when it boils down, every child is different. A manual just wouldn’t apply. They’d all have to have their own set of instructions if that were the case and that’s just too much for one writer to take on.

Parenting is:
Fool proof love and patience mixed with discipline, helpful instruction and a lot of prayer that we don’t screw it up.

I encourage all of you to call you mother and tell her how much you love AND APPRECIATE her. She’s the most important person in the world, because if it weren’t for her….you wouldn’t be here!