blessings, children, family, family bonds, life, relationships, smiles, son

Family Blessings

Today has been wonderful and I have such peace in my heart. My son’s team won their soccer game today, then we rushed home to finish the last minute pick up of our home in preparation for my husband’s birthday party. I had about 14 people in my home to celebrate my hubbie’s special day and watch football. It was pot luck, so we had all kinds of good munchies…mmmm. Gotta love pot luck! It was so pleasant to clean, prepare, and maintain my home for such a loving group of people. I’m one of the lucky ones…my in laws are as close to me as my family is. My husband feels the same way about my family. There’s no drama or bitterness, just humor, love, and respect for one another.

Tho only downside of the day was watching our Sooners play a game, with bad call after bad call. From each room, that had a television, I heard multiple screams at the refs, for their obvious partiality, and at OU…for not really showing up to play.

Today’s soccer game, prior to our family party, was an unusual one. My son’s team won, of course, but some of the players weren’t really engaged in playing soccer today. They were more interested in things like the butterflies that flew down the field, or how many pieces of grass they could pull. BUT that’s what you get with four year olds some days. Some days they’re in the zone to play, and others…they’re just zoning and playing. Either way…they had fun and it’s always fun to watch what unfolds.

These are the days I feel so blessed to be me and have my life. Thank you Lord for your constant blessings!

Christianity, death, faith, family, family bonds, fathers, life, love, prayer, relationships, spirituality

Daddy’s Empty Chair

My father sent me yet another thoughtful email. One of those that I had to share…hopefully it will give you some peace today.

 

A man's daughter had asked the local minister to come and 
pray with her father.  When the minister arrived, he 
found the man lying in bed with his head propped up on two pillows. 
An empty chair sat beside his bed.

The minister assumed that the old fellow had been 
informed of his visit.

"I guess you were expecting me," he said.

"No, who are you?" said the father. 
The minister told him his name and 
then remarked, "I saw the empty chair and 
I figured you knew I was going to show up." 

"Oh yeah, the chair," said the bedridden man. 
"Would you mind closing the door?"

Puzzled, the minister shut the door. 
"I have never told anyone this, not even my daughter," said the man. 

"But all of my life I have never known how to pray. 
At church I used to hear the pastor talk about prayer, 
but it went right over my head.  I abandoned any attempt at prayer," 
the old man continued, "until one day four years ago, 
my best friend said to me that prayer is just a 
simple matter of having a conversation with Jesus."

Here's what he suggested- 

"Sit down in a chair; place an empty chair in front of you,
and in faith see Jesus on the chair. It's not spooky because he promised,
'I will be with you always'.  Then just speak to him in the same way
you're doing with me right now." 

The old man went on, "So, I tried it and I've 
liked it so much that I do it a couple of hours every day.  
I'm careful though. If my daughter saw me talking to an 
empty chair, she'd either have a nervous breakdown or 
send me off to the funny farm." 

The minister was deeply moved by the story 
and encouraged the old man to continue on the journey. 
Then he prayed with him, anointed him with oil, 
and returned to the church. 

Two nights later the daughter called to tell 
the minister that her daddy had died that afternoon.  
"Did he die in peace?" he asked. 

"Yes, when I left the house about two o'clock, he called 
me over to his bedside, told me he loved me and kissed 
me on the cheek. When I got back from the store an hour later, 
I found him.  But there was something strange about his death. 
Apparently, just before Daddy died, he leaned over and 
rested his head on the chair beside the bed. What do you make of that?" 

The minister wiped a tear from his eye and said, 
"I wish we could all go like that." 

Prayer is one of the best free gifts we receive. 

I asked God for water, He gave me an ocean.
I asked God for a flower, He gave me a garden.
I asked God for a friend, He gave me all of YOU...
If God brings you to it, He will bring you through it.

Happy moments, praise God.
Difficult moments, seek God.
Quiet moments, worship God
Painful moments, trust God.
Every moment, thank God. 
animals, care taking, cats, chocolate lab, family, family bonds, favorites, friendship, gratitude, guardian angel, health, life, love, medical, nostalgia

When is it time to let go??

In the last 6 months my dog has become very geriatric. His weight has gone from 110 to the low 80’s. Keep in mind this is a Chocolate Labrador of 14 years. He’s been with me since he was 10 weeks old.
hershey
Not too long after a heartbreak, at the tail end of college, my dad bought Hershey for me. Hershey helped me through a really rough time in life. He was not just any dog either. He was in ‘tune’ with me.

When I got sick…so did Hershey. When I was stressed, Hershey got hot spots and started scratching. When I was sad, he would instinctively know to come lay his head on my lap and nudge my arms around his neck. It was the best therapy a girl could get!

When my roomate’s cat had unexpected kittens, it was Hershey who would lick them and love them. A male 90ish pound dog nurturing new born kittens was the sweetest thing I’d ever seen. He’d nudge their little behinds to help them walk, and put his paws on either side of their path to keep them in a straight line. Hershey was and is an amazing animal.

My second roomate came along, and had some undesirable company over once. I say once because my then 100 pound lap dog leaped at this undesirable’s throat with his teeth gnashing–before this guy could even step two feet in our front door. This person never darkened my door way again.

Hershey was the center of my world for so long, and was my measuring stick on who was good and who was not! I knew my husband was a good man, when Hershey couldn’t get enough attention from him. Hershey had found a new love when my husband started coming around.

After my son was born, I obviously shifted most of my attention to this brand new baby in our lives. I didn’t forget Hershey, but if truth were to be told…I feel I neglected him a little bit. I didn’t do it purposely as I still hold so much love for him in my heart, but when a new mom is so sleep deprived she can’t stand up straight…it’s hard to focus on anything else than what is right in front of you.

A few months ago, my vet told me it wouldn’t be long before Hershey gets too far along to live comfortably. He told me I should consider when I would want to let him go. I’m tearing up right now even thinking about it. He’s been a big part of my life, and I can’t imagine my life with out him. But I’ve seen such a change in him even in the last 2 months, and don’t want to put my own feelings over his well being either.

His ears are still so silky smooth, as how the rest of his fur used to be..but now he’s got hard course fur that’s not really growing back in. Some of his fur is peeling off and not growing back. He’s getting as blind as a bat, and I’ve had to direct him in the dark on how to get out to the back yard. He’s run into a few porch cover posts trying to go pee. Most of all, he either pants non stop or is completely subdued…neither activities are normal behavior.

I want him to be comfortable in his last year(s), and when I see that he’s still able to jog back to the back door after doing his ‘business’, I feel that he’s still OK! I know the humane thing is to let him go if he needs to be put to sleep, but I just don’t think that time is now. I don’t know when it would be time, and pray I don’t have to make that decision!

blessings, Christianity, encouragement, faith, faithful fridays, falling, life, love, marriage, prayer, relationships, spirituality, wife, women

Faithful Fridays 9-21-07

Man I’ve not been up to par lately in getting my posts completed. All I can say is Thank God for Fridays, and the weekend. Another full week, and I’m just now able to sit and blog.

It’s 10:20, and I just got home from a wedding. Weddings always make one hopeful for the future or reminiscent of the past, depending on your station in life. They always remind me of my wild wedding (topic for another blog) and how blessed I am to be with my husband. Still today, I’m amazed at God’s plan for my life vs. what I ‘thought’ my own plan was.

I happen to love weddings!! Most people I know don’t. They feel it’s necessary to attend but not really exciting for them. For me, it’s amazing to see two people up front, full of a mix of emotions, getting ready to take the biggest leap of faith in their lives.

Who knows now a days if it’s a marriage meant to last. Only those two up there ultimately get to make that choice…to make it work or not. However each time I attend a wedding, it reminds me of how different my life could have been if I hadn’t had every turn in life that led me straight to my other half.

Right after college graduation, I was in a relationship that I thought would result in marriage. The plan was for me to move to Texas and find a job, so we could make it work. This college boy (I’d say man…but he really wasn’t one) tore my heart right down the middle, by not showing up at my college graduation and telling me that he’d met someone else. I didn’t function well for months. Life as I knew it was turned upside down, and I couldn’t imagine my life with out my plan of happily ever after.

Eventually I wised up and recognized how stupid that was being. No boy was worth my crying over him, especially if he didn’t respect me enough to show up for such a momentous occasion, like a college graduation. I knew God had to have a better plan for me. Man or no man, I would stand on my own and be okay.

Tonight I was reminded how blessed I am to be exactly where I am, watching this couple exchange vows during such a sweet and simple ceremony. They had a couple singing of my favorite songs byRascal Flatts and it hits home on so many different levels…as I’m sure it does for most women who’ve experienced heartache only to find their soul mate. God Bless the Broken Road played and it just gave such a clear picture of how every turn I’ve taken in my life, has been directed by God in His plan to lead me to my husband. If I hadn’t been so rudely awakened to the fact, that my plan was a very wrong turn in life…I wouldn’t have been able to be right where God wanted me to be enabling me to cross paths with a witty, humble, silly, and adorable guy, who was waiting for me.

If I’d not had my own broken road, and been redirected to stay in Oklahoma, I wouldn’t have met this amazing man, who forever changed my life. Not only as a person, but as a woman…and now a mother.

Thank you Lord for your patience and faithfulness in our lives. Although we try it our way, which we think is best…You patiently guide us in other directions even through the hurt. Thank you for reminding us to let go of the control, and taking us on the path that you know to be best for our lives.

Bless The Broken Road Lyrics (Rascal Flatts)

Rascal Flatts – Bless The Broken Road Lyrics

I set out on a narrow way many years ago
Hoping I would find true love along the broken road
But I got lost a time or two
Wiped my brow and kept pushing through
I couldn’t see how every sign pointed straight to you
Every long lost dream lead me to where you are
Others who broke my heart they were like northern stars
Pointing me on my way into your loving arms
This much I know is true
That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you

I think about the years I spent just passing through
I’d like to have the time I lost and give it back to you
But you just smile and take my hand
You’ve been there you understand
It’s all part of a grander plan that is coming true

Every long lost dream lead me to where you are
Others who broke my heart they were like northern stars
Pointing me on my way into your loving arms
This much I know is true
That God blessed the broken road
That led me straight to you

appreciation, blessings, blogging, faithful fridays, meme, relationships, sisterhood, smiles, women

Smiles Abound

I don’t usually do too many meme’s but this one was too hard to pass up. Thanks to Don for awarding me this wonderful meme.Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

It got me thinking…what in life makes you smile? So I thought I’d list of few of life’s treasures, that are endearing to me, before I bestow this award to those that have the gift of making one smile through their blogs.

Those that have read me before know that I am a huge fan of counting your blessings…so this goes along those same lines.

Things that make me smile:

1) The whisper of God’s voice in my heart when He speaks to me. The reassurance I feel when I’m stressed or having a rough time. I know he’s always there and no matter how bad it gets, He makes me smile.

2) The sound of my husband’s voice when he’s had a good day.

3) My son’s spirit and general outlook on life. He’s four but so wise and still such a fun kid. The Lord is blessing him with balance and wisdom, and still providing him with so much wit. He makes me laugh daily!

4) The smell of my mom’s baking home-made rolls, when I walk in her home.

5) Little emails that my Dad and Aunt send me to let me know they’re thinking of me.

6) The ocean pounding the sand, and it’s breeze whipping through my hair. (West Coast or Hawaii)

side note: East coast beaches really don’t make me smile…they smell like fish rather than salty ocean. 🙂

7) My sister’s smart alec tough exterior, and her warm tender heart inside. She’s a beautiful person inside and out, and just being around her makes me smile.

8) My new garden…every time I pull up and see it’s growth and explosion of color, I smile!

9) When my son jokingly states, “You’re gonna get a kowabunga right in the ‘bahookie’ if you misbehave.” It’s a saying he got from my sister’s boyfriend, who also makes me smile.

10) Having my family together and happy always makes me smile. Thank you Lord for our good health and happiness!

Instead of simply passing this along to others and asking them do forward it on. I thought I’d change it up a little. To those I pass it on to, please list 10 things that make you smile. Give us insight on your blessings, which will make us all stop and think about our own.

To those that make me smile when I read your blog, thank you!!!

A not so desperate housewife, a woman who has some tough times coming up sooner than she’d like. She’s got a great attitude and I know she’ll keep it all together as her husband is off to serve our country! She’s a blessing and makes me smile daily.

Teri, whose humor always amazes me. She’s constantly coming up with a new angle to her blog, that allows any reader to get caught up in her wit. Teri is someone definitely worth stopping by.

Cakehead, who I have met through Cre8Buzz always makes me smile. Who wouldn’t smile for cake? She’s a true artist and can make any cake imaginable! Check her talent out!

Boogiemum, another great blogger and Cre8buzz friend, is always a good read. She has a sweet spirit about her, and is always captivating others on her blog.

So ladies…enjoy your award….you all make me smile. Smiles Abound!

side note: This replacing my usual Faithful Friday post! Faithful Friday will be back next week. Stay tuned….

blessings, fathers, goals, photography, pictures, work

Unleashing a Hobby

A couple months ago, I started a photosite to showcase some of my photos, that has since decided to go under. My intial thought was to set this sight up to allow visitors to purchase my pictures and generate some business. Some of you may remember when I posted that I was thinking of starting up a side business with photography. I wanted something slow and steady to supplement my sporadic commissions that may roll in or…not.

Growing up around my grandfather’s dark room, the love of photography has always been in my heart. A great photo is an emotional tie to those people and places we love. It helps preserve that special moment in time forever! Photography blesses us all daily. So this would be a dream that allows me to enrich lives with the art of photography.

Since this photosite closed their web services down, I’ve been stuck in limbo on what to do or how to start. My sister’s boyfriend solved that problem. He’s kicking my butt in gear by having me shoot his son’s race this weekend. He told me, “You may want to get a domain name and have prices/business cards ready…just in case.”

“In case….?” I replied.

“Well, parents will see you initially with me…and then see that you’re off shooting my kid. It may open up the flood gates for you if they see a photographer out there shooting. If they ask how much you charge, you should be prepared.”

Man, I wasn’t seeing the big picture at all. I was just going to shoot his son at his latest BMX race. It may not amass to anything…or my sister’s boyfriend may be right and it may get me the start I need. He said parent’s are always looking for ways to get pics of their kids, but can never do it themselves due to the races.

I got on GODADDY.com and registered for my domain name, which of course was taken. Almost every version of my business name was. So I got creative to find a name that was a available and bought it!

It would be nice if I could actually get some business this weekend. Thanks to my sister’s man that I even have this opportunity, and thanks to God for blessing it! I’ll keep ya posted!