Monday, December 31, 2007

Goodbye 2007

This year started out a little rough, but steadily got better. Because I started blogging about halfway through the year, I can remember the second half much better than the first half. However I do remember that in January, bad things happened to both of my kids and when things happen to my kids, it is so much worse for me than if it had happened to myself. First, Aaron's band got stranded in a snow storm and then on the same weekend, their money box was stolen. It had every bit of money they had made. It really broke my heart for them. The second bad thing that happened was that a guy that Leah had previously dated left some threatening messages on her voicemail. It was really frightening so she had to go to the police about it. Thank God for her friends who stayed with her for support during that time!

Things started getting better after that and I'll just briefly mention some of the highlights of my year....we got a new look in our kitchen - new stove, countertops, floor, sink, painted walls instead of wallpaper; we went to two different CD release parties in Nashville; the band got signed to a record label; I went to Tampa with my sister to visit her son; went to a "hip-hop church" in Tampa; Eddie and I went to Helen, Georgia; went to Rush of Fools concert at my church; Leah and I went to the beach with my youngest sister and her three kids; went to the beach with Eddie and Leah; had Eddie's 50th birthday celebration; went to several Plea concerts in several different locations; housed and fed numerous bands several times; a wonderful Christmas season with loved ones.

Now, the nest is empty again and while I miss everyone, it's not really bad. I've been so busy the last month having so many different ones at our house and constantly providing food and hospitality, it's nice to have some down time before having to return to my job. I think the thing I've learned the most over the past year is to be flexible. I've learned that with only a moments notice I might suddenly have to feed a bunch of people. But it's okay if I haven't had a week to plan and buy groceries and clean house. Being flexible is so much better than having to stick to a strict schedule and try to make sure that everything goes exactly as planned. Being flexible also includes what I mentioned before about not setting my expectations too high, only to be disappointed. This lesson learned is one that I plan to keep in my life because it makes me and everyone around me much happier.

I love my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, I love my family and friends, and I love all my new friends I've made this year through blogging. I wish for each of you a very happy new year. God bless you!

I will exalt you, my God the King; I will praise your name for ever and ever. Psalm 145:1

Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Simple Things in Life

As I mentioned already, my son and daughter have both been home for the holidays, but my daughter left late Saturday night. Tonight my son and his girlfriend will be leaving because the band he's in starts up another tour tomorrow. For anyone who might be new to this blog, he's a musician (the drummer) for a band that tours full time, so his life is made up of traveling on a daily basis. He's been doing this since May 2006, so some of the simplest things in life are things that he doesn't get to take advantage of anymore. Just to mention a few of those things....sleeping in a bed, going to church every Sunday, taking Sunday afternoon naps.....these are things he no longer gets to do. So this afternoon when we came home after church and going out to lunch, it was raining outside; one of those afternoons you just want to stay inside and read or watch TV. I thought this was so cute -- my son got so excited and ran to his room to put on some comfortable clothes because he said it had been such a long time since he'd been able to take a Sunday afternoon nap. It made me so happy to see him so excited over the most simple thing. I'm so glad he got to live a sort of normal life, if only for a week.

Aaron and Meghan

Saturday, December 29, 2007

Expectations

It seems so long since I've actually written a blog post! One reason for that is because I've been off work for the past week, so I'm away from my normal routine life. However, I have been reading my friends' blogs and I have sure enjoyed hearing about your Christmas holidays. I only posted pictures of mine, but I have to say that I could not have asked for my Christmas to be any better than it was. The best part was to have my son and my daughter home with us and everything after that was just extra icing on the cake. This year I decided not to set my expectations too high, because I was afraid that if my expectations were too high about having a great Christmas, something might happen to disappoint me. We had plans, but I decided to focus on the real meaning of Christmas and if everything didn't turn out exactly the way we planned, it wouldn't be the end of the world. But everything went just as I wanted it. I got all the cooking done that I wanted to do; my son arrived home from up north in plenty of time to spend all our family get-togethers with us; the weather was cold for Christmas; we spent time with my husband's family and with mine. It was wonderful!

My daughter's boyfriend came to join us on Christmas Day, so it's always nice to get to know the guy she's dating a little better. I like him a lot and I really appreciate that he treats her like a lady. My son's girlfriend flew in from Pennsylvania the day after Christmas and has been spending a few days with us. Again, I'm glad to have the opportunity to get to know her and I'm also very pleased with his choice for a girlfriend. She's very sweet and beautiful, and is a committed Christian. I pray that both of my kids will follow the Lord's guidance with their relationships.

To you, O Lord, I lift up my soul; in you I trust, O my God. Do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me. Psalm 25:1-2

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Our Christmas in Pictures

We went to my parents house on Christmas Day. The first picture is when I gave my mom the special gift I made for her.
Dear Mom,
I hope that you will like this gift I made for you. I think sometimes we buy gifts for people at Christmas without much thought behind it, but we do it just to have something to give. But I want you to know that there was a lot of thought and a lot of time put into making this particular gift. Since you are missing the hymns being sung at church, I wanted to give you a CD with your favorite hymns on it. I spent many hours recording your favorites as well as my sisters’ and my favorites, and then adding other instrumental sounds using my synthesizer. There is no singing, just music, but hopefully they are played simply enough straight out of the hymnal so that you can sing along as you listen. It is far from perfect (like me) and there’s not a lot of fancy piano playing, but there is a lot of love behind it and a lot of thankfulness to you and Daddy for giving me the gift of music. I don’t know what I’d do without it. I love you and Daddy so much!



My husband was so proud of his "A Plea for Purging" hoodie that Aaron gave him!






Alex, my nephew, opening a gift. Seated on sofa is my son, Aaron, my brother-in-law, Robert, and my sister, Angie.




Chaos in the kitchen at my parents house.


My daughter, Leah, and her boyfriend, Thomas, by my mother's Christmas tree.



Thomas gave Leah some hunting clothes!



At our house on Christmas Eve, all six cousins on my husband's side of the family together for the first time in many years. We have a picture from every Christmas of all the boys holding up Leah, the only girl cousin.



At our house on Christmas Eve, Eddie's brother Frank always plays his accordian -- these are his two sons with him. I thought this picture was funny.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Christmas Traditions

What are some of your Christmas traditions that make Christmas special in your home? We don't really have a lot of things that we've done intentionally for the purpose of becoming a tradition, but I believe there are a few things that have become tradition simply because we do it every year. One is that we always get together on Christmas Eve night with my husband's family and eat, exchange gifts and listen to some Christmas music. Then on Christmas morning, just our little family gets up and we wait until all of us are up before anyone goes to the room with the Christmas tree. Then we open the gifts we got for each other and I make sausage balls for our breakfast. Later in the day, we go to my parents' house to have the family get-together with them and my sisters and whoever is able to be there from our families. My mom will sometimes get someone to read the Christmas story from the Bible before we start opening gifts. We usually do the gift swap called "Dirty Santa". Sometimes after that we will play a game together. The last couple of years we played this electronic game called Catchphrase. It's a lot of fun when you have several people to play. And then we go home exhausted and just rest and hang out together that night. All during the Christmas season I like to burn scented candles that make the house smell Christmasy.

Please share some of your Christmas traditions or things your family does that make Christmas special at your house.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men. Luke 2:13-14

Friday, December 21, 2007

Friday Favorites - Christmas Edition

Today, for Friday favorites, I'd like for you to read an article that I thought was really great. This one is not by one of my blogger friends, but I thought it really captured the spirit of Christmas. I hope you will take five minutes to read "Jesus is Christmas".

If you just feel like reading the Christmas story from the Bible, click on Luke 2.

Thursday, December 20, 2007

The Real Meaning of Christmas

Amel tagged me for this about a week ago and I'm just now getting around to it.

Here are the instructions for this meme:

1. Make a paragraph next to the last paragraph in the tag that is passed to you “What is Christmas to you” and put your name at the end of it linking back to your site, or the page that answered this tag.
2. You can use a title that will suit your Christmas idea.
3. Then tag as many as you can.

For me, Christmas means HOPE. Always has been, always will be. The fallen world has received the greatest hope of all: the birth of Jesus Christ. And since hope is all around, then it's only normal to see so many acts of kindness around Christmastime. In Indo, we never exchanged Christmas gifts, but now I live in Finland and I start to buy gifts for my loved ones. Christmas also means family gathering for me and candlelight service at church. Plus I get to sing Christmas songs and enjoying a Christmas play and dance. Other than that, for me Christmas also means SERENITY. I can feel a different kind of peace in my heart whenever Christmas comes along. And since Christmas is near New Year, it's also time for reflection for me: reflecting all the blessings that the Lord has given me and then thanking God for everything. -
Amel

Christmas, to me, is a day that is set aside to celebrate the birth of God's only son, the Savior and Messiah. We celebrate this special birth by spending time with the people we love the most and giving gifts to each other because God gave to us the greatest gift of all. And it's not only on Christmas Day that we celebrate; we celebrate during the weeks leading up to December 25 by giving gifts to others around us who are in need of basic necessities that we are already blessed to have. We celebrate by listening to and singing Christmas carols that tell about the birth of Jesus. We also celebrate this day by eating special foods that we only have at Christmas time. I love Christmas and meditating on the story in Luke 2 about how it all actually happened. I love spending time with family and friends and the warmth of love that I feel at this time of year. -Kathy

I am tagging everyone who visits my blog from now until Christmas!

Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Inside My Thoughts

Since I don't have anything really pressing to write about today, I decided to go ahead and post one I wrote on December 7th, but I never posted it. I was complaining and I guess just getting it all typed out that day helped me to feel better even without posting it. I just found it in my drafts today, so here it is in red print...
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Would you like to get a peek inside the mind of Kathy? Well, keep reading and you’ll see a typical “Kathy” thought process…

It’s Friday night and I have to go to a middle school Christmas dance. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not complaining. It’s just that, Friday night?! I’m so tired from my work week and I’ve got all my Christmas shopping still ahead of me. But, really, I’m not complaining. I mean, I love my husband, he’s a teacher at that school and he has to chaperone the dance. He’s been working all week, too, so I know he’s tired, but he wants me to come there and be with him at the dance. I should be honored that he wants me there, right? That’s why, I am really not complaining. He’ll be hungry after school and won’t have a chance to get dinner, so it’s very important for me to pick up some food and take it to him, and spend the rest of the evening with him, even if it is 25 miles from home. I mean how could I complain about something so trivial, right? He came to hear me play in the Christmas program last weekend, twice! And he came to the church one of the rehearsal nights to eat dinner with me. He gets my side of the bed all warmed up for me every night before he wakes me up from falling asleep on the couch. But here I am, complaining about having to do this one little thing for him. Yes, that’s right, I don’t want to go to a middle school Christmas dance on a Friday night in December and I'm complaining about it!

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Oh, I just now remembered that I did post this one on December 7th, for about five minutes. And that was when my husband called me at work and told me that I shouldn't drive to his school for the dance because he was going to be busy anyway monitoring kids and wouldn't have much chance to visit with me. I was so happy that I didn't have to go to that dance!

A Plea for Purging Christmas

I love

A Plea for Purging!

They are the coolest metal band around

and their CD


is the best!

Merry Christmas

Aaron, Andy, Blake, John and Lyle!

I love you guys!

Monday, December 17, 2007

What Are You Looking For?

I was on my way to work the other day when I saw a sign that really said something to me. The sign said this...

"What you see depends mainly on what you look for."

The reason this sign made me start thinking so hard was because there is someone in my life who I feel has done me and others wrong at times. Now, it seems like I'm always looking for the faults in this person and trying to keep count of all the wrong things she does. When I read that sign I realized that I can find fault so easily with this person because that's what I'm looking for. I need to change this bad attitude and start looking for the good things in this person and I imagine that I'll start finding some different things. This will take some effort on my part and it won't be easy to change my bad habit.

I'm thankful that God doesn't look for my faults because if He did, he would find way too many to name. When God looks at me, he doesn't see my sins and my faults. He sees an unblemished life and a clean heart, not because of anything I've done, but because I have been purified through the blood of Jesus.


But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus, his Son, purifies us from all sin. 1 John 1:7
If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Plans Change

This has been such a crazy week with so many unplanned things happening. I've had to be very flexible as plans changed. Even with all that, it's been a good week and I enjoyed the things I did, but I am really tired today. After the band guys left this morning, I realized that my computer had become infected with some kind of virus, so I spent a lot of time on the phone with a computer guy this afternoon. Thankfully, he was able to get it fixed. I tried shopping some today also, but my feet got really tired and then it started raining so I just came home. I still have some shopping to do but I know it'll get done. I'm not stressing over it.

Do you ever have one special gift that you can hardly wait to give someone at Christmas? I'll have gifts for my husband, my kids, our parents and some extended family gifts. But the one this year that is really special and I can hardly wait to give is the one for my mother. I won't say just yet what the gift is, just in case she happens to read my blog. I don't think she reads it, but I will wait until after Christmas to say what the gift is. I hope that she will like it and that it'll mean as much to her as it does to me. Do you have one of those special kind of gifts for someone this year? I would love to hear about the special gifts you are giving and any stories about why it is so special.

Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift! 2 Corinthians 9:15

Friday, December 14, 2007

Friday Favorites

Last month I read some really wonderful Thanksgiving posts. One that stuck in my mind was written by Kay of Loop de Loops in La La Land. Please take a moment to read her Monday Thanksgiving post. It is absolutely beautiful. And while you're there, listen to "Breath of Heaven" on her music player if you've never heard the song before. I don't remember how I came in contact with all of my blogger friends, but I do remember finding Kay through a profile search of a certain Christian band, I believe it was Newsboys.

In case anyone doesn't already know this, you can go to your own profile and click on one of your interests and blogger will bring up a list of all the other blogs who listed that same interest in their profile. For example, I have listed A Plea for Purging as one of my favorites in the music category. I can go to my profile, click on A Plea for Purging, and a list of all the profiles who listed them comes up.......all six of them! Ok, so they haven't gotten very famous amongst bloggers yet. But if I click on Newsboys, it brings up a list of 5,300 profiles that have listed them as a favorite. And that's how I found Kay and a few other blogger friends.


The weekend is coming and I hope you each have a safe, fun and restful weekend with good weather.

Nehemiah said, "Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is sacred to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the LORD is your strength." Nehemiah 8:10

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Christmas Time is Here

Just like many other people, life for me at this time of year is getting busy with so much to do. I have chosen to make it fun and enjoyable and not to be stressed about it. I've decided that if everything doesn't get done or every present doesn't get bought, that's okay with me. I will enjoy Christmas time because it's not about me. Christmas is about Jesus and I don't believe he would want me putting all that other stuff ahead of him, including my blogging.

I had an unexpected blessing yesterday. When I turned on my cell phone yesterday morning, I had a text message from my son telling me that the band had some shows cancelled and a promoter of one venue did them wrong, so they were coming to our house for a couple of days. I was so excited and decided I would text him back and tell him how happy I was and how welcome they always are at our house and I couldn't wait for them to get home. However, my texting skills are sorely lacking so it took me about 10 minutes to respond by text message with my joyous message saying......"ok". That's it, two little letters was all I could get done and still make it to work on time. He immediately texted me back with a nice long message thanking me and telling me when they'd be here and so on. I don't know how these young people do it! But they got here and we had fun getting to hang out with them last night. I hope to cook dinner for them tonight. They'll keep my home computer busy so I won't get to use it much for a couple of days. That's fine with me, I'm just glad to have my boy and my other boys home!

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

Emmanuel, God With Us

When I was in college I had to take a religion class as one of the required courses that everyone had to take. One research paper I had to do for that class was on one of the many names of God. I chose to do my paper on the name Emmanuel (also spelled Immanuel). This one word is so full of meaning. Simply put, it means "God with us." In the Old Testament, Isaiah prophesied that a virgin would give birth to a son and he would be called Immanuel. It is so amazing to think that God who is above all, God who is the creator of all, God who our finite minds cannot really even comprehend, this same God took on human form and left his glory in heaven to be with us. Emmanuel, God with us.

Mercy Me, one of the great Christian groups today, has a song called God With Us. I've added a video at the end so you can listen to this wonderful song.

Isa 7:14 - Show Context
Therefore the Lord himself will give you a sign: The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and will call him Immanuel.

Mt 1:23 - Show Context
"The virgin will be with child and will give birth to a son, and they will call him Immanuel"--which means, "God with us."


Joh 1:14 - Show Context
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.



Monday, December 10, 2007

Storms

This morning I heard on the news that there is a snow and ice storm from Texas to Pennsylvania. Every time I hear something like this I immediately look at A Plea for Purging’s schedule to see where they are supposed to be that day. When I heard this report I was hoping with all my heart that they weren’t going to be in the area where the bad weather is. Tonight they are scheduled to be in Abilene, Texas. I’m not sure exactly where the ice begins, but I know there seems to be some in the panhandle part. If I’m reading my map correctly, I think Abilene is south of there so I’m hoping and praying that the guys are not going to be traveling in the icy areas today. Last winter, they were in Amarillo, Texas and Oklahoma at the exact time a horrible storm hit. I try so hard not to worry because I know my worrying won’t accomplish anything. But when I know that my son, my only son, is traveling in possibly hazardous conditions, it does give me the opportunity to completely trust God to take care of him.

Here in Alabama, we are having extremely mild temperatures today – a high of 80. I had to pull out the summer clothes. Are you in any of the areas across the country being affected by this storm? Are you having ice or snow?

When I am afraid, I will trust in you. In God, whose word I praise, in God I trust; I will not be afraid. What can mortal man do to me? Psalm 56:3-4
I have been given another award! I would like to thank my friend Sindi from Life is a Roller Coaster for giving me this. I have really enjoyed getting to know her and reading all about things that go on in her life Sindi, thanks so much!

Saturday, December 8, 2007

My Mother

When you work a full time job, it makes it hard to get everything done that needs to be done around Christmas time. Sometimes at the end of my work day, I just feel so tired that all I want to do is go home and plop down on the couch and watch TV. I don't get to do that very often, but when I think about it, I don't really have that much that I have to do after work. On Wednesdays, I do go to choir practice, and one Tuesday out of the month I go to a ladies mission meeting, but other than that, my evenings aren't super busy. That brings me to the point of this post.

The other day when I felt so (*yawning and stretching*) "t-i-r-e-d" because of working, I thought about my mother. When I was growing up, my mom had to work full time. Not only that, she had four daughters. But when I compare myself to her, I fall sooo short of being what she was. She always cooked breakfast for us, every morning. I never cook breakfast during the week. She always came home from work and cooked us a nice dinner. I did cook dinner when my kids were home, now I do it sometimes. Twice a week she had to make sure I got to piano lessons, plus whatever my sisters were involved in. Every Saturday that rolled around she had to go grocery shopping and do all kinds of housework. She and dad always made sure that we had a very special Christmas. I don't think they were consciously thinking about making memories, but I have the most wonderful childhood memories of Christmas. But what gets me the most now when I think about it is this....After I was grown, married and had my first baby, my husband and I had to work the afternoon/night shift. My mother, who was a year older than the age I am now, would leave her full time job and pick up my baby and keep him until I got off work at 10:00 each night. That blows my mind! I think about how tired I am each night at my age, and then I realize that my mom babysat for me at this age after working all day. My mother is one amazing woman.

Mom is 75 years old now and doing well, except for her knee hurts all the time and keeps her from being able to get out and about very much. She goes to church and all, but can't really get out and do a lot of shopping or walking around. I ask her if I can help by doing some shopping for her, but she never really needs me to do anything. She's a great mother!

My new blogger friend, Julianarw, has passed these awards on to me. Thank you, Juliana! Even though my mom doesn't have a blog, I would like to give her and my dad the Christmas Spirit Award for always making our Christmas so wonderful. I pass the Bodacious Blog award on to my blogger friend, Sindi!






Friday, December 7, 2007

Friday Favorites

It's Friday, yea!!

Today I would like to start doing something new. I would like to try to do it each Friday, but knowing myself, it will probably be a once in a while type thing. What I'd like to do on Fridays is to put a link to a favorite post that I've read in the past. If anyone else would like to try this also, feel free to join in. I've seen people do Marriage Monday, Wordless Wednesday and Thankful Thursday. So welcome to Friday Favorites! I encourage you to follow the link and read the post. Today's favorite is a post that was written by 74Wixygrad on his Seek Him First blog. The title of the post is Enlarge Our Borders. I enjoyed it and I hope you will too!

But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness, and all these things will be given to you as well. Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:33-34

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Pride v. Humility

This past Sunday and Monday, my church orchestra did its annual Christmas program – we did it twice on Sunday evening and then again on Monday night. And this was after rehearsals for three nights last week. My part in the orchestra is to play the synthesizer. This is a keyboard instrument that can make all kinds of different instrumental sounds. As a musician, I learned a long time ago that it is easy to let pride creep into my attitude. I have to make sure that I always pray for all the glory to go to God for any music that I play. I play first of all because I feel that God has gifted me with this talent so that I can give praise, honor and glory back to Him. Each Sunday at the other church where I play the piano, people always give me compliments and wonderful encouragement. I am so thankful for that and it is something that I really need because it helps me keep going. But I have to be careful to find that balance of not becoming prideful while still being grateful and respectful toward those who give me compliments.

Pride is something I believe everyone has trouble with to some degree. For Christians, we realize that too much pride or having a haughty attitude is sin. The dictionary says this kind of pride means “thinking too well of oneself; haughty, arrogant.” The Bible says that God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble. That thought alone should be enough to make us want to stay away from the sin of pride. But there are also other negative consequences of pride mentioned in the Bible including being disgraced, quarrels, punishment from God, destruction and downfall. When I feel the pride creeping into my attitude, I have to remember that God opposes the proud. I don’t want God to oppose me.

The opposite of pride is humility. The definition of humility or humble is: “modest, without wrongful pride in oneself or one’s accomplishments; patient and mild disposition.” God gives grace to the humble – isn’t that much more desirable than being opposed by God? Being humble doesn’t come naturally – it takes a lot of work and a lot of dependence on God. But it is definitely something to start working toward! I am listing some verses below that are about this subject – to read them, all you have to do is click on it and it will take you to the verse.


Pride goes before destruction, a haughty spirit before a fall. Proverbs 16:18

James 4:6
1 Peter 5:5
Proverbs 13:10
Proverbs 15:33
Proverbs 16:5
Proverbs 16:18
Proverbs 18:12
Proverbs 29:23

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Follow Up

Earlier today I did a post about Rush of Fools appearing on The 700 Club. Well, they posted the video of it on their myspace page so if you'd like to see it click Rush of Fools video. Wes is the one with spikey hair and wearing a tie. The other guy is Kevin. This is great, now I don't have to find the show and watch it on TV tonight!

Now I'd like to tell the rest of the dog story that I started a while back. If you need the background on this go to Part 1 or Part 2 to read previous posts. To shorten the whole story, our neighbor's dog was climbing the fence and always staying in our backyard with our dogs. But finally, their dog started not only coming into our yard, but it started getting out into the neighborhood and running around. The neighbors had told us they would get rid of the dog since it wouldn't stay in their fenced yard, but they never got rid of it. Instead, they brought home a second outside dog, I guess in hopes that it would give Betsy some company. That idea didn't work and Betsy was running all over the neighborhood and finally started frightening children and acting like she might bite them. It was at that point that my husband felt he had to take matters into his own hands and he called the dog catchers and had them come out and pick up the dog. Since then, we have never seen the dog again and our neighbors haven't spoken to us. I felt really bad about it, but we couldn't stand by and take the chance that the dog might hurt some children. We saw our own son get attacked by a Rottweiller when he was eight years old. It was a horrible experience and that is why I have had a fear of that breed dog.

So, now you know the rest of the story. The End.

T.V. Show Today

There is a Christian television show called The 700 Club, but I never watch it. However, I found out that Rush of Fools is supposed to be on the show today. I hope to be able to catch the show tonight but I'll have to find out what channel and what time it comes on. I just thought I would put this out there for anyone who happens to see this in time and would like to watch the show. If you see it, please let me know how it was and at what point in the show the group appeared.

Thanks and have a wonderful Tuesday!

Sunday, December 2, 2007

The Gift

December has just started and I know some people who have already finished their shopping for Christmas! Not me, though; I only got started yesterday. I'm just not one to get everything done ahead of time as I have to first get finished with Thanksgiving, then church Christmas programs. But it's a lot of fun to shop for gifts to give the people I love. Sometimes I have to make myself stop buying because I keep seeing more things I want to give them. When I get the newly bought items home from the store, I put them in my special hiding place until I'm ready to wrap the gifts. When I finally get the gifts beautifully wrapped, I place them under the Christmas tree to wait for the time to come when I can give it to my loved one and watch the excitement on their face when they open it.

Each gift that waits under the tree until Christmas has a tag with a name on it. Therefore, each gift belongs to a specific person. But until Christmas arrives and that person actually receives the gift, they can't do anything with it or use it in any way. If there is an expensive shirt gift-wrapped and tagged with my husband's name, no matter how much it cost he cannot wear it or know anything about it until he's actually received the gift from me. It's his gift, I bought it for him, but he needs to take it and open it before it can do him any good.

There is a gift for you that has your name on it. It was given to you by God but you have to accept it and receive it. I know that most of my regular readers have already received the gift. It is the gift that God has given to us -- his son, Jesus. This is what Christmas is all about -- it's about celebrating the birth of Jesus Christ, God's gift to mankind. This gift is life-changing, I know because He has changed my life. I am a different person from what I would be without Jesus. It's real, He's real, and it's powerful. If you feel that you would like to know more about Jesus, please find my email link on my profile and I would be more than happy to talk with you about it.

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

That if you confess with your mouth, "Jesus is Lord," and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you confess and are saved. Romans 10:9-10

Saturday, December 1, 2007

Busy Day

It's been a busy Saturday! I've done some shopping with my hubby today and we put up the Christmas tree, then went out again to buy just a few more lights to finish it out. I've done laundry and cleaned house, and now after all that, my mind is mushy. I knew early this morning I should have written my blog while my mind was fresh and I knew what I wanted to say. But it's gone now. Maybe I can try tomorrow morning to write something meaningful. I'll just leave you with a beautiful passage from the Bible and I'll use the King James version for this one because that's the way I originally learned it and no other translation makes it sounds quite as lovely.

Psalm 121
1. I will lift up mine eyes unto the hills, from whence cometh my help.
2. My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth.
3. He will not suffer thy foot to be moved; he that keepeth thee will not slumber.
4. Behold, he that keepeth Israel shall neither slumber nor sleep.
5. The Lord is thy keeper: the Lord is thy shade upon thy right hand.
6. The sun shall not smite thee by day, nor the moon by night.
7. The Lord shall preserve thee from all evil; he shall preserve thy soul.
8. The Lord shall preserve thy going out and thy coming in from this time forth, and even for evermore.

Psalm 62


Friday, November 30, 2007

Award

My friend, Nina, from Raising Butterflies has given me this award. Thank you Nina! It was so sweet of her to think of me in this way. I have so enjoyed reading her funny stories about her children and getting to know her through blogging.




I would like to pass this award on to my friends 74WIXYgrad and Amel.

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Dreams

Do you have a particular subject that you dream about frequently? For about the past year or more, it seems like I have a lot of dreams about babies. I have no idea why I dream about babies because I sure don't want to have one at this point in life. There was a time in my life when I was in my 20's and I always wanted to have babies. Now, I would like to have grandchildren babies, after my own children get married. But I just can't figure out why I dream about babies. In my dreams, I'm always the one taking care of the baby and I always feel so much love toward it. Maybe I'm having these dreams because my young co-worker who sits next to me is pregnant and I hear her talking about baby stuff a lot. (By the way, she started a blog yesterday, so visit Holly and leave her some comments.) Or maybe it is because my kids have grown up and moved out and my mothering duties have changed. Or maybe it is because my second son, Michael, was born at only 18 weeks, not far enough along to survive so I never got to find out what it would be like to have him as my son. In the Bible, dreams had meanings but I don't know if they mean anything today. They probably don't have any significant meanings today since we have the Bible as a means of learning what God wants us to know. It just makes me wonder why I keep having these baby dreams.

The Bible has many stories where dreams were used to inform or to warn people of things. One important time was when an angel came to Joseph in a dream. Joseph and Mary were pledged to be married to each other when he found out that she was pregnant. He was a good man and didn't want to disgrace her publicly, so he decided to just divorce her quietly. That's when he had the dream and an angel from God told him that he was to marry her because the son Mary was carrying was conceived by the Holy Spirit and he would be called Jesus and he would save his people from their sins. This was a very important message that Joseph received in a dream. There were others dreams for Joseph and Mary after the birth of Jesus that were used by God to carry out his purposes.

Biblical dreams were very important and very necessary to carry out the work of God. What are your thoughts on dreams today? Do our dreams have meanings? Does God use dreams today to warn us or to tell us something?

But after he had considered this, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream and said, "Joseph son of David, do not be afraid to take Mary home as your wife, because what is conceived in her is from the Holy Spirit. She will give birth to a son, and you are to give him the name Jesus, because he will save his people from their sins." Matthew 1:20-21

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Christmas Gift Idea

A couple of years ago, a boy from my church came to work at my office right after he graduated from high school. Wes was hired as a temporary employee for the summer, but he actually stayed for a few more months after summer ended. I knew of Wes because he was a leader in the youth area of our church and he led the Wednesday night youth praise services. My kids both already knew him, but this was my chance to become better aquainted with him. One day I noticed he was wearing a ring that looked like a wedding ring, but it was on his right hand. I knew he hadn't gotten married but was dating a sweet Christian girl from our church. So I asked him about the ring. He told me that it was a purity ring -- he and his girlfriend had made a commitment to God and to each other to stay pure until they were married. I thought that was so amazing and it really made me think so highly of Wes and his girlfriend for making this commitment. I knew right then that God would greatly bless this couple.

After Wes's temporary job ended, he left town to go to school. I don't remember the sequence of events after that, but within the next year some great things happened to Wes and the band he was playing in. After recording a demo CD in Tennessee (produced by my son at his recording studio) they entered a battle of the bands contest, won, got a recording contract with a major label and became the group Rush of Fools. They recorded a full length CD with Midas Records which is in stores everywhere. They have had a number one song on the Christian charts and now have a second song out that is getting radio play. And recently Wes and the same girl have gotten engaged.

With the Christmas shopping season in full swing now, I know everyone is trying to decide what Christmas presents to buy for the people on your lists. If you have anyone who likes to listen to Christian music, they might really enjoy the Rush of Fools CD. I really support this group because I know that they are sincere and their lives reflect the God they sing about. That's why I wanted to tell you some things that I knew personally about Wes. If you'd like to hear Wes sing "O Come All Ye Faithful" go to their myspace page and click on the name of the song.

But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 1 Corinthians 1:27
Click here to read 1 Corinthians 1:26-31

Monday, November 26, 2007

Rainy Days and Mondays

Back in the day, there was a song by the Carpenters that said, "Rainy days and Mondays always get me down..." The good news is that it doesn't have to be that way. This Monday morning I heard an unfamiliar sound on my roof as I was getting ready for work. It was rain! I can remember a time when a Monday morning topped off with rain would have been a cause for depression. But not now! I am right in the part of the country that has been under an extreme drought for quite some time. To be able to wake up this morning and hear an abundance of rain on my roof, then to be able to walk from my car to my office wearing a raincoat, holding an umbrella and stepping over big puddles of water -- these were wonderful blessings that I thank God for today.

If you are a believer and you've felt a little blue this Monday morning after the long holiday weekend, just remember that believers have a reason to be optimistic about life. Live expectantly; expect the best from God; look for the best in others; turn your thoughts toward the Lord; trust Him to direct your life.

Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things. Philippians 4:8 KJV

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Iron Bowl and Movie Review

This day in Alabama is the day we wait for all through football season. It's the day of the Iron Bowl. The Iron Bowl is the last regular college football game of the season and is between The University of Alabama and Auburn University, instate rivals. I guess you would have to live in Alabama to fully understand how big this game is. Every Alabama resident is defined by whether they are for Alabama or Auburn. I think every baby born in this state is required to list on their birth certificate whether they will scream Roll Tide! or War Eagle! It's just part of living in Alabama -- you HAVE to choose your allegiance. My parents apparently listed "Roll Tide" on my birth cerficate, so I have been a die-hard Alabama fan for as long as I can remember. I am writing this post as I'm watching the game because I'm a little nervous and I can't sit still. My team has not had a good year and we are behind in the game right now -- in fact, my hubby just got so frustrated with it that he left the room. I have no idea why I care so much about a silly football game. Whether we win or lose is not going to affect my life in any way.

Earlier this afternoon, we went to see a movie, "August Rush". I had read some reviews about it on the internet and most of them seemed to mention something about it being like a modern day Cinderella fairy tale type story. I don't know about that, but I absolutely loved the movie! It was about music and a boy who was separated from his mother at birth and always feeling like the music inside him would bring them back together. It's also about the mother and the father of the child finding each other again. Of course, being a musician and a mother, the movie touched me and I would recommend it to anyone who likes love stories and happy endings.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth, burst into jubilant song with music...
Psalm 98:4

Friday, November 23, 2007

Random stuff

Thanksgiving was wonderful! We went to my parent's house which is only about a 5 minute drive from my house. My daughter was home from college and got to go with us along with her boyfriend; and also there were two of my sisters, one sister's boyfriend, a nephew and his wife and baby. My son called us to wish a happy Thanksgiving and we passed the phone around so everyone could say hello to him. We ate turkey, dressing, corn, squash casserole, peas, cornbread, butterbeans, broccoli casserole, 7-layer salad, homemade macaroni-and-cheese ,and there were several desserts which I wasn't even able to touch. We had way too much food but we're going back later today to eat leftovers. After leaving my parents house, our family went for a slightly longer drive to visit my husband's mother. We have so many blessings to be thankful for!

Today I was mean to my husband. I didn't mean to be mean, but he had already taken my car in to have the tires rotated and balanced (or something like that) and then he wanted to take our daughter's car in to have some work done. That meant I would have to go pick him up so he wouldn't have to wait around while they worked on the car. I complained to him about it and said I didn't want to spend my holiday from work getting out in the "black Friday" traffic taking cars to the shop. It was really very selfish of me and later on I realized that's how he shows his love to us, by keeping our cars in good working order so we'll be safe when we drive. I felt really bad and went back and told him I would help him out with the cars. But he said no, he wanted me to enjoy my holiday from work.

I don't care to go shopping the day after Thanksgiving. I know I'll eventually get my shopping done and it's not worth it to me to deal with all the traffic and people out today. Around here, the stores open at 4 a.m. or 5 a.m., but I am not willing to get up that early to go shopping.

Today, I have a fire going in our fireplace and I'm just hanging around the house. Our house was 66 degrees this morning because I won't turn the heat on. But this fire has brought the temperature up to 73. I usually keep our heater set to come on at about 66 degrees. I am interested in knowing what people in colder climates keep their heat set at?


I can't remember the last time I went to see a movie. But there are two out now that I'd like to see, "August Rush" is one, and "Bella" is the other. If you have seen either of these, please let me know if they were good.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

I am Thankful for My Anniversary

On November 21, 1980 Eddie and I got married. Today is our 27th wedding anniversary and for that, I am very thankful! There have been good times and difficult times but God has been with us every step of the way. We committed our lives to Him and to each other and it's only with the Lord's strength that we've been able to make it this far. I love my sweet and precious husband!
Here are a couple of pictures from our wedding day, for you to get a good laugh. Just keep in mind, it was 1980!

The wedding party included my three sisters, Eddie's dad and two of his brothers.

The preacher was our own pastor. This is an intersting fact about the pastor -- his daughter became a good friend of mine and still is to this day -- we ate lunch together after church this past Sunday. Her oldest son was best friends with my son and they roomed together in college. Now her second son is about to get married and he has asked me to play the piano in his wedding.


Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

I Am Thankful for THANKSGIVING

Thanksgiving seems to get pushed aside a little more each year in America. I refuse to forget this great and important holiday -- it is one of my two favorite holidays of the year. I don't even start thinking about Christmas shopping until after Thanksgiving; I would like to say that it's because I put so much emphasis on Thanksgiving, but that wouldn't be completely true. It's mainly because I'm a procrastinator and shopping is not my favorite thing in the world. But I do like to celebrate Thanksgiving with family and with much thankfulness to God who gives us all things.

Yesterday morning as I was getting ready for work, I was listening to Christian radio, Focus on the Family. They were talking about the origins of Thanksgiving. They mentioned that in public schools today, children are being taught that the Pilgrims came to this new land and after surviving the harsh conditions of a brutal winter, the Indians came and befriended them and helped them; because of this they had Thanksgiving as a way of thanking the Indians. The truth is, they had this feast of Thanksgiving to thank God, not the Indians, for that first harvest in 1621. A Captain Christopher Jones decided he wanted to leave the new land and go back home. He offered for any of the Pilgrims to go with him but they wouldn't leave because they felt called by God to stay in the new land where they would have religious freedom. They said they would rather die here and remain true to what God called them to do than to turn their backs on God. Despite all the hardships they suffered, the Pilgrims had the feast of Thanksgiving to give thanks to God Almighty.

In 1789, our first president, George Washington, signed a proclamation of General Thanksgiving. It is amazing to read this proclamation today, knowing how much our government has changed since then. It starts out like this..."WHEREAS it is the duty of all nations to acknowledge the providence of Almighty God, to obey His will, to be grateful for His benefits, and humbly to implore His protection and favour..." Isn't that great? This proclamation was signed by the President of the United States! Read the original document, or the full text version.

I hope that every person who reads this blog will take some time this week to think about the blessings that have been given to you by God, and thank Him for them. I hope that you all have a safe and happy Thanksgiving holiday!


I will praise God's name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving. Psalm 69:30

Sunday, November 18, 2007

I'm Thankful for Yesterday

Thanksgiving will be here soon and I'm looking forward to spending time with my family and relatives, and eating the best meal of the year. But there is one down side this year, and it's that my son won't get to be home. The band will be in Arkansas so they will spend the holiday with Blake's (guitar player) family. But yesterday the band was playing in a town just outside Atlanta so we decided to drive over and see them. My husband invited three of his former students who love A Plea for Purging's music to go with us. I had so much fun hanging out with young people. I have progressed so much with this band being in my life that I've gone from not even realizing this kind of music existed to absolutely enjoying it. It's true -- I love watching and listening to Aaron's band play. The live concerts are the best, and very entertaining. I think these teenage boys we took with us had a great time and felt really special getting to hang out with a band. I know when I was 15 years old, that would have been so much fun. Here are some pictures from last night.

Aaron playing during the concert


These are the boys we took with us.


This was right after we got there and met up with Aaron. He's so silly -- always having to make faces in pictures.


This was during the concert when they were doing one of the favorite songs.

This is Lyle, one of the guitar players.



In the next two pictures, the three boys got to pose with the whole band, and their favorite teacher, my husband!





Here, they got to pose with some of the girlfriends of the band members. Don't you know they can't wait to show this off to their friends!


Here I am hanging out with the young people at the merch table.



Now, to end this, here are a couple of videos I took during the concert. See the cute drummer? That's my boy!









I've Got a Friend in You

My sweet friends, Amel and Sindi, have both honored me today with this special award. Thank you both for being such great friends in my blog world.

I would like to share this award with some people I've met through blogging who have become like real friends to me.

Strawberry

Frasypoo

Nina

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Turn Negatives into Positives

I have been really busy lately, at work and outside of work, so I haven't had a lot of time to visit and comment on blogs, or to write much in my own. But I woke up really early this morning and couldn't get back to sleep. While I was trying to get back to sleep I had this blog post rolling around in my head so I finally just gave in and got up so I could start writing it. I'm definitely a morning person so that's when my mind works the best.

When I got up and went to the bathroom, I noticed the toilet seat had been left up by my husband, so I had to put it down. When I did that I started thinking about how I'm always hearing women complain about men who leave the toilet seat up. Honestly, I don't see what the big deal is about it. All you have to do is put it down. It doesn't take a lot of effort or strength. Is it really worth spending your time and energy to complain about it? It's really not worth complaining about to me. If that is something that annoys you or makes you complain, why not turn it into something positive. Every time you come to a toilet seat that your husband or son has left up, why not thank God that you HAVE a husband or son. Wouldn't it be a lot worse to always have the toilet seat exactly the way you want it, but not have that husband who loves you and takes care of you and your family? I would imagine there are some mothers whose sons are in Iraq who would love to find a toilet seat left up by that son.

After this, when I was trying to get back to sleep, I was trying to think of other negative things that can be turned into positives. Here are some that I thought of....

When you are at your job and your work seems to be piling up, instead of complaining about it, thank God that you have a job and that He is providing for your needs through this job. Look at all the extra work as job security.

When co-workers start to get on your nerves, thank God that you have co-workers and you don't have to do it all by yourself.

When you encounter a rude person out in public, in stores or on the road driving, rather than letting them get your temper flared up, thank God for showing you what it looks like to be rude and ask Him to help you to be the opposite.

If you go to brush your teeth and find the toothpaste cap was left off, or someone squeezed the tube in the middle, thank God that you have teeth to brush (and then go buy your own tube and hide it.)

How about your email inbox being full of spam? Complaining won't change this. Just be thankful that you have the internet at your fingertips and think about all the good things that the internet provides.

So, your challenge for today is to turn something negative into a positive. If you are able to do it, let me know what the negative was and how you turned it into a positive. My own personal challenge came as I was leaving for work. I went to the fence to tell the dogs good-bye and to give them a pat on the head, and Emperor jumped up and put her dirty paws on my white sweater. I didn't have time to go in and change, so today I am wearing Empy's paw print. Hmmm....how can I turn that into a positive thought?

**Note to readers** My interest in having a positive attitude has come about from being around people who are very negative. It made me more aware of negative attitudes and has made me not want to be that way. I do my share of complaining, but it is something I try not to do if I can help it. However, I want to make sure anyone who reads my blog knows where my heart is. I do like positive thinking and I believe that our attitude affects every aspect of our lives, but for me it goes so much deeper than just positive thinking. For me, a positive attitude comes as a result of my relationship with Jesus Christ and the indwelling of the Holy Spirit. Yes, I do believe that I still have a choice about what kind of attitude I will have each day, but when my ability to be positive is at its weak points, I have a supernatural power to draw from and that is the power of God through the Holy Spirit. Having the knowledge and believing in my heart that God is ultimately in control and that He doesn't make mistakes gives me the strength to handle difficult situations that come about as a part of life. I have never read a self-help book or anything by Norman Vincent Peale. I'm sure those books have great advice and I might read one some day. But for now, I want to saturate my mind with the Word of God, the greatest self-help book on the market for all time.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Love is in the Air

Today I have heard from both of my children, one by email and one by phone. I do talk to my daughter every day which is great. I'm not sure if that is because she's my baby or if it's because she's a girl -- I think it's a girl thing. But the main topic of her conversations these days is her current love interest. She thinks she's in love, and I'm happy to see her so happy. We have met the nice young man and my husband sure gave him the "this is my daughter and you better treat her right" talk, but I think he did it in a very nice way. I guess if that doesn't turn the guy away, he must really care for my daughter.

Communication with my son is a different story. He doesn't call very often and he doesn't email unless I do it first or unless he needs something. But when we do talk, he's very open and tells me everything that's going on. He sent me an email today with his Christmas plans and apparently, he's also in love. He had already told me that he and this girl were dating, though I don't know how they can date when she lives in one place and he is in a different city every day. He's going to have some time off around Christmas so he's going to fly out and spend time with her then come home for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, then she's going to fly here to spend some time with us. This should be interesting. Guess I better get ready for some possible big changes in our family in the next year or two.


Time will tell whether or not these relationships are made of true love.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Break the Mold

The Bible amazes me. My whole life, I have been exposed to church, Sunday school and Bible teachings. Yet, the older I get and the more I read it, the more amazing it becomes. I can read something I've read a hundred times, and it will be like brand new and the Holy Spirit will reveal new truths that I've never seen before. I love reading the Psalms -- they are so uplifting and help me to praise and worship. Proverbs teach about wisdom and give so much practical advice for every day life. Other Old Testament books have all the great stories, and the Epistles in the New Testament teach us how to live the Christian life. As much as I love all those parts of the Bible, lately I've had a desire to read more about Jesus and his life. I have started to see him in new ways that I haven't thought about before. Almost everything about Jesus is so different from the "mold" that we as Christians seem to think we are supposed to fit into.

1. Jesus was born to an unwed mother, or maybe I should say he was conceived by an unwed woman. We (Christians) sometimes look down upon a teenage girl who gets pregnant before being married. We know that Mary was a virgin, but I wonder what all her neighbors thought about her and how they treated her. They probably didn't understand the circumstances and maybe just saw her the way we see an unwed, pregnant teenager.


2. Jesus was born in a stable. This blows my mind -- our Savior, Messiah and King, God who created the universe humbled himself so much as to be born in a place meant for animals. Can you imagine your own baby being born outside, in a barn, with animals around?

3. Jesus was homeless. I mean, I guess he was homeless. The Bible says he had "no place to lay his head." I think we as Christians sometimes look down on homeless people. Sometimes we are very judgemental toward them. We try to avoid them because they might not smell so good or they might ask us for money.

4. Jesus spoke to a Samaritan woman. In that day, the Jewish people hated the Samaritans and would avoid them at all cost, even taking a longer journey to keep from passing through Samaria. Jesus not only went through Samaria, but stopped and asked a woman for water -- a woman who'd been married five times and was then living with a man who was not her husband. This woman who was even shunned by the other women because of her lifestyle, was the first person to whom Jesus revealed himself as the Messiah.

These are just a few examples of how Jesus broke the mold of our way of thinking. While I love the traditions of the church, there are times we need to break the mold of what our traditions have taught us that Christianity is. Christianity is so much more than just going to church on Sunday. The best examples we have of breaking out of the "Christian mold" are the examples from our own Lord.


I have not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. Luke 5:32

Saturday, November 10, 2007

5 Most Annoying Things

I've been tagged by Amel to do this meme. I had to think about it a little while but I think I've come up with five things.

1. It really annoys me when people stay on personal phone calls while they're at work and being paid to do a job. We all have to deal with personal things at work once in a while, but I'm talking about people who do this on a regular basis and it causes their co-workers to have to pick up their slack.

2. It annoys me when my favorite football team, Alabama Crimson Tide, lets another team like, Miss. State, beat them. Yes, I was very annoyed Saturday, but congrats to your school
Matt!

3. I do not like for anyone to wake me up after I've fallen asleep at night, even if I fell asleep on the couch or in the recliner. Just leave me alone and I'll wake up eventually.

4. I find a lot of things at work that annoy me, but I can't mention some of them because I really need my job. But one thing that bothers me is people who have reserved parking spots not using them but using the metered parking spaces because they are near the building. By doing this, they are taking up places that visitors need, or places that newer employees need while no one is using their reserved spot. It is so selfish.

5. A "sue-happy" society. Some people want to sue for every little thing that goes wrong in their life. They found a fly in their hamburger at a restaurant so they want to sue the restaurant. Why don't they just go out and get a job if they need money?

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Friends

I just realized something. I miss my blogger friends posts when they take a day or two off from blogging! I enjoy reading about your lives, your families, your adventures, your struggles, and I love reading your thoughts and meditations on our Savior. This blogging journey has been such an unexpected blessing to my life! I've always been a little bit wary of meeting people online, but I feel like I know some of you so well that I would love to get to meet you in person one day. When I started this blog, I thought no one would ever read it and I thought that after a couple of weeks I would be out of things to say. I've surprised myself by being able to write over 100 posts already!

So, to all my blogger friends, please keep writing. You encourage and entertain me. You teach me and touch my heart. You help me and humble me. You inform and intrigue me. I look forward to reading your blogs for many months to come.

Now, just so I can learn what things are like in different parts of the country, and even different countries, please tell me if you have ever eaten grits. Grits are a typical part of a southern breakfast, but it seems like some people from the north haven't eaten grits. A good hearty breakfast in Alabama would be eggs, grits, bacon or sausage and toast or biscuits. I don't eat that much because I prefer a light breakfast and something that's easy and quick like a whole wheat bagel with cream cheese spread. What is a typical breakfast in your area?

I thank my God upon every remembrance of you. Philippians 1:3

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Favorite Things and Contentment

I think I have writers block, or is it called bloggers block for people like me who aren't really writers. So, I'll just write whatever pops into my head and see how it turns out.

These are a few of my favorite things: sunsets, ocean breezes, mountains, mountain streams, the beach, fires in my fireplace on a cold night, rainy days, my family singing around the piano, old farmhouses, hugs from my hubby, seeing my children smile, 4:30 on weekday afternoons, Thanksgiving, Christmas.

It doesn't take a lot to make me happy. I'm pretty much content with the things I have. Yes, I would love having a bigger, newer house out in the country, but I'm fine if I don't get one. I'm just thankful to have a place to live that keeps me warm in the winter, cool in the summer and dry when it rains -- it's big enough for our family plus the visitors who don't mind sleeping on a couch or the carpet. I would love having all the latest fashions in clothes and shoes and purses, but I don't mind wearing last year's clothes or even the clothes from five years ago. I'm just thankful to have decent things to wear. Of course I would love to have a beautifully decorated house, but when I really stop to think about it, I probably couldn't relax when 15 young men are staying at our house if I had a lot of really nice things in it. The way it is now, I don't worry about them messing up anything, because there's really nothing they can mess up.

I don't really know what the secret of being content is, but I think it has something to do with having a relationship with Christ and being secure in Him. The more I get to know the Lord by reading His Word, the more content I become. The more I am grateful for the things I do have, and the less I think about what I don't have, the more content I seem to be. I will leave you with a couple of quotes that I like and a Bible verse.

“We tend to forget that happiness doesn't come as a result of getting something we don't have, but rather of recognizing and appreciating what we do have.”
Frederick Keonig

“Do not spoil what you have by desiring what you have not; remember that what you now have was once among the things you only hoped for."
Epicurus quotes

I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. Philippians 4:12