29 December 2008

See the sunlight through the pine
Taste the warm of winter wine
Dream of softly falling snow
Winterskol, Aspenglow
As the winter days unfold
Hearts grow warmer with the cold
Peace of mind is all you know
Winterskol, Aspenglow
Aspen is a life to live
See how much there is to give
See how strongly you believe
See how much you may receive
Smiling faces all around
Laughter is the only sound
Memories that can't grow old
Winterskol, Aspenglow
Words and music by John Denver

Aspenglow was written about Aspen, which is a resort town in Colorado. They have a celebration every year called Winterskol where many skiers come down the mountain holding torches, thus the Aspen glow.

Merry Christmas, everyone~

04 July 2008

I guess we all have things in our past that create pain, confusion, and hurt in our present and threaten the future. I know I do. Things I kept hidden, you know kind of like a box collecting dust on a closet shelf. Every so often you take a tiny peek to make sure it's still there, then quickly close it and shove it back into the darkness. Maybe that's why I always felt a kindred spirit with certain children and with women that were forced to give what only belonged to them. If you're one of these, you know what I'm talking about without any further words. If you're at a loss and don't have a clue, then I hope it never happens to you and that you never read words like these and think, 'it happened to her, too'.

My devotional today uplifted me and reminded me of the pain He feels when we hurt. He reminds us that the freedom of speaking out, dealing with it, letting go, and moving on is what frees us to step boldly into the future. He is our future. Continuing to hold on and grieve for what was lost only keeps us in the past. And the present is here for such a brief moment in time. I have had the support of a loving family and a Christian counselor, which with my King's unending love, has brought a peaceful ending to the past. The words went something like this~

True freedom is not the absence of conflict, nor is it the release from authority. He came to bring us freedom: freedom from the past that would hold us prisoner; and freedom to embrace the future and all He created us to be. He is our freedom, and His Spirit will bring the truth that frees us to love and forgive. We find true freedom when our past becomes a stepping-stone to a brighter tomorrow.

I pray that, along with me, you release the pain and hurt from the past and step boldly into His arms. In doing so, we are not slaves to those that attempt to control and to hurt. I am a child of the King and I lift my head high and look upwards to what I know awaits me.

22 June 2008

This snapshot reminded me
of this snapshot~Little boys have heroes~
and some dads,
really love
being dads~

13 June 2008

And I will pray the Father,
and he shall give you another Comforter,
that he may abide with you for ever.
From the Father's Heart ~ My child, I know when your heart is breaking, when you've said good-bye to the last dreams of your heart. I'm here for you, and I will hold you as long as you need to rest in My arms. My Spirit is ever present as the Comforter to speak peace to your heart and soul. In every sorrow, and for every tomorrow, I will be there. No one else can make that promise to you.

A Grateful Response ~ Lord, I never need to look farther than the comfort of Your arms. There You wait for me with expectant heart, longing for my fellowship. How many times I've felt Your strong arms and quiet whispers to my aching heart! Where else could I turn? Lord, You are my Comforter.

Simple Truth~ Just when we think all hope is gone, Jesus fills our hearts with song.
Today, as I was reading my daily devotional,
I remembered the grief stricken families
of the Scouts killed in the tornado.
I remembered the family of Audrey Caroline
and Luke of Bring the Rain.
Our Lord is our Comforter,
He is so in love with us,
and He promises
to always always be there for us.
What else, who else, do we need~

08 June 2008

I look at these little ones,
and I see
the good parts of me,
and sweet shades of him~
And, of course,
the best parts of them.
Parts that will nurture
these little ones
to grow to be
mirrors of all of us.
And I know
that no matter where they go
or who they grow to be
or how they get there
they will always be
the best parts of those I have loved.
Little pieces of our hearts,
our souls,
our lives,
walking around
in another time,
another century,
another life.
And so we continue
to love,
to laugh,
to live~

01 June 2008

I wonder
if she knows,
this child of mine,
just how much
I watch her.
And laugh.
And learn.

This life,
the one I dreamed of
for myself,
the one I prayed
for her.
The one she now holds
close, and tight,
to her heart.

Boldly she steps forth
to embrace,
to laugh,
to learn.
With him there,
she's never alone.

So I watch,
and I wish,
and I am thankful.
I am so thankful.

28 May 2008

I am my beloved's,and my beloved is mine.
~Song of Solomon 6:3 kjv

From the Father's Heart: My child, we have a wonderful love relationship that I want to guard at all costs. I am your beloved, and I feel the same way about you. In that sacred romance, I long for you to stay close to Me. There is no one else who will meet your needs like I will. There is no one who will ever love you like I do. Come, sit beside Me. I love to share My inmost secrets with you.

A Grateful Response: Your love is like no other, Lord. With You, there is a belonging and a warm sense of security. I love to walk and fellowship with You in the cool of Your garden, or by the warmth of a fire. When You speak, my heart and spirit leap to join my beloved One. Wherever You are, Lord, is where I want to be.

Simple Truth: If love were heaven's only gift, it would be enough.

Please go to Christianity.Com to sign up for a daily devotional. To spend additional time with His Word and Love is only a good thing~

09 May 2008

He Was

He was the first thing I noticed,
standing there just off the path.
I curled my toes inward, I remember,
not sure why I did though~
maybe to make sure it was real?
The gravel was the small kind,
a bit rounded, not sharp~
but He says there's no pain, right?

He looked younger, healthier.
I don't remember him ever looking such.
Watering various heights of cascading flowers~
he loved his flowers
and bored us by giving saplings or seedlings
or seeds from huge conifers he found out West~
the ones I wish now I'd saved.

There didn't seem to be a sun,
although it was bright, a fresh kind of light.
The breeze on my face was so perfect,
not hot, not even warm,
but not cold nor cool~just perfect.
Although I saw the others there,
it was him I wanted to see,
this time that seemed to last for minutes~
but then, only moments.

There was a time
when I thought back to the one I left,
yet there was no sorrow~
but He tells us that too, doesn't He?
I knew where I was, I knew I wanted to go to him,
to be closer~but I couldn't.
Not yet. I had to come back.

Come back and share the beauty that is there,
what perfect health looks like,
that what we read is beyond what we can imagine.
One day, though, one day I'll go back~
and I'll hug my dad.
Then we'll sit at the feet of the King.
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
My daddy~
November 27, 1929 - July 3, 2004

22 April 2008

love is
Remember these
in the daily papers?
I was involved
in a long distance romance
when these were new.
I think I cut out
and saved each one,
taping them carefully
in a scrapbook,
those that I didn't include
with a love letter to Georgia.
What giddy young feelings surfaced
finding this today,
and realizing
the romance may be over
but the love,
a bit of it
will always
be there.

16 April 2008

My hands were busy through the day
I didn't have much time to play
The little games you asked me to,
I didn't have much time for you.
I'd wash your clothes, I'd sew and cook,
But when you'd bring your picture book
And asked me please to share your fun,
I'd say, "A little later, son."
I'd tuck you in all safe at night
And hear your prayers, turn out the light,
Then tiptoe softly to the door . . .
I wish I'd stayed a minute more.
For life is short, the years rush past . . .
A little boy grows up so fast.
No longer is he at your side,
His precious secrets to confide.
The picture books are put away,
There are no longer games to play,
No good-night kiss, no prayers to hear,
That all belongs to yesteryear.
My hands, once busy, now are still.
The days are long and hard to fill.
I wish I could go back and do
The little things you asked me to.
~author unknown

08 April 2008

Old photos have always captured my attention. And my imagination. Why would an old photo be relinquished to strangers? How did it get outside the family realm? Who are they? They loved, they laughed. They lived. What did they dream of and did they live long enough to see those dreams take flight? What memories did they leave in the hearts of those that knew them?

There's a blog I frequent, and just recently found, that offers images to those that might find some creative use for them. I have no thoughts of being crafty and reusing this, preferring instead to study it and let my thoughts wander.

They don't look that far back into the past, yet clothing tells us about a particular period. The half smiles on their faces let us know they are comfortable and at ease. What were they thinking as they stood there?

I've chosen a few others for you to gaze upon and let your mind take you to another time, another place. What do you find yourself thinking as you see these children? When I found the class shot, I immediately thought, "I wonder how many of these became doctors or pursued politics? How many became mothers, nurses, teachers?" Leave me a comment or two and share your thoughts with me. And as always, may we all find moments to love, times to laugh, and to live as if this were our last day on earth~

31 March 2008

The Look~

I love how she looks into the camera. Looks at me with laughter in her smile and that little gleam of adventure in her eyes. Her hands clasped, but not tightly. Just enough to let her know that she still has a hold on life. Note the little finger, the one that's a bit separated from the rest. One might say that she is beginning to relax and enjoy what life is bringing her way. You'd never know that just a little over two years ago her world fell apart. Changed. Forever. The future was rewritten.

They were high school sweethearts. He didn't just love her, he adored her. They married, he joined the Air Force, and they traveled. Saw places most of us only dream of seeing. Visited ruins and castles. Brought two beautiful children into the world. A boy, named after his father, and a daughter. A perfect family. There are no perfect families. Each have their own trials. Children move through the teenage years, finances get tight, and so on.

Throughout it all, though, they pampered each other, supported each other, and lived to help the other. They were close to the King and found such pleasure in their church family. They worshipped together. And it was so good.

The children grew up, married and moved away. Empty nesters now, he brought her breakfast in bed each and every Saturday. Those of us that knew and loved them would tease, wanting such treatment ourselves. And we watched the way he looked at her, following her with his eyes. We spoke, amongst ourselves, of the love that was so evident, so real, so absent in today's world. And they planned. They planned for their future,

their retirement and the golden years. Saving their money over the years, they'd managed to have almost enough to purchase a bed and breakfast ~ something they'd dreamed of over the years of traveling and staying in homes across the world. They were so well suited for it and we knew they would find not only success with this venture, but that they would delight in the strangers that crossed their threshold. Then,

he began to feel bad. For someone so healthy, so in shape, we worried. After too many tests, too many doctors, and too little time, a diagnosis was given. The news wasn't good. In fairy tales, it is. In the real world, it seldom is. And so they planned not for the golden years,

but for the years they would be apart. Now living each day became a challenge. So much to do, and so little time. For him, it was to make sure she would be well taken care of, that she understood how the household would need to be maintained, and he tried, oh how he tried, to prepare her. She lived trying to make it easy for him, being strong for him, letting him know each and every moment how she loved him, had loved him, and would always love him. They took a last trip together, to Canada, to a quaint bed and breakfast and fell in love all over again, as if it were the first time. And we watched.

We watched as they both withered away. He with the cancer, and she with the ever present knowledge that he was leaving. And so he did, on New Year's Eve, 2005. She woke the first day of a new year without him. And we celebrated his life with a memorial service in the middle of a raw and cold January. And our hearts stung from the unfairness of it all. They, who were so in love, so true to each other and to their feelings, to be separated so soon. More than one of us would have traded places with him. He left this earth, and she woke each morning without him.

The first year was harder than she ever thought it could be. Staying busy, staying focused, wondering how she would get up the next morning. But she did. She learned so much that first year without him beside her, in the physical sense of the word. He did well in preparing her for this, but how do you teach someone to live without you. How do you really teach that? And she grew.

Slowly, day by day, she began to draw strength from the memories and, dropping the cloak of heaviness, she allowed Him to wrap her in comfort and guidance. Once again, she began seeing the beauty and freshness of Life that had dimmed with the news of his illness. She found that laughing didn't mean he was forgotten, that smiling at another didn't mean she was disloyal, and that life doesn't stop with dying. We who knew them know that he would be so proud.

So she looks at me, with laughter in her smile and that little gleam of adventure in her eyes. Her hands are clasped, but not tightly. Just enough to let her know that she still has a hold on life. She is happy. She is strong. And she plans.

28 March 2008

"Look at the land with your own eyes, since you are not going to cross this Jordan. But commission Joshua, and encourage and strengthen him, for he will lead this people across and will cause them to inherit the land that you will see."
~Deuteronomy 3:27b-28

Moses led the people of Israel out of Egypt and in the wilderness, but did not get to enter into the Promised Land becauseof his sin. Yet, for all those years, Moses nurtured and prepared the person who would do what he could not do. That person was Joshua. Who are you training, molding, encouraging, motivating, and calling to do what you won't be able to do? What successor will take your dreams farther than you can? Who is your Joshua?

This was my devotion today from Heartlight and it made me stop and wonder. Powerful words, sobering thought. So, who is YOUR Joshua?

27 March 2008

i believe in pink, i believe that
laughing is the best calorie
burner. i believe in kissing,
kissing a lot. i believe in being
strong when everything seems
to be going wrong. i believe
that happy girls are the
prettiest girls. i believe
that tomorrow is another day & i
believe in miracles.
~audrey hepburn

19 March 2008

How wide is Your love
That You would stretch Your arm
And go around the world
And why for me would a Savior's cry be heard
I don't know
Why You went where I was meant to go
I don't know
Why You love me so
Those were my nails
That was my crown
That pierced Your hands and Your brow
Those were my thorns
Those were my scorns
Those were my tears that fell down
And just as You said it would be
You did it all for me
After You counted the cost
You took my shame, my blame
On my cross
How deep is Your grace
That you could see my need
And chose to take my place
And then for me, these words I'd hear You say
Father no
Forgive them for they know not what they do
I will go
Because I love them so
~On My Cross by FFH

13 March 2008

I love this picture. Happiness, total abandonment of joy. Ian, playing soccer with his dad, in the sunshine of youth. Oh to be able to capture that feeling of agelessness once more. That feeling that there's no tomorrows, just the glorious moment at hand. I choose to live more moments in just this way. Thanks, Jen, for sharing this picture, but moreso for reminding us we need to give the child in us a chance to come forth.

04 March 2008

Be not forgetful to entertain strangers, for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. ~Hebrews 13:2

I feel very strongly, even moreso since the accident, that angels are near, especially during times when they are most needed. I also feel very strongly that we need to take the time to acknowledge them and to thank God for their presence. Let's rid ourselves of the scales the world has put upon our eyes and pray that He allow us to witness these heavenly beings He sends to help, to comfort, and to guide. They don't have to be in white robes with strong wings attached behind the shoulders. She may be sitting beside you in the doctor's office when you're afraid and weary; he may help you with a dropped package in the grocery line; who said, who wrote that they have to be anymore than what we need at that time? The next time you open your eyes after a prayer, leave them open so you can witness His work. And may you continue to remain fascinated by this beautiful earthly home, for you won't believe how much more Paradise is~

27 February 2008

for just one day, one moment even, if I could just hold her in my arms again and feel her short legs, ripe with babyfat, wrap around my waist. to have her soft curly hair brush my face as she nuzzles in closer to my neck and I smell that milky breath that, to this day, I know in my dreams. to have her pull Baby Fields closer to our hearts that are separated merely by the clothes we wear and to know that she is already learning to love. I sing and murmur love songs, songs that will lull her into that place known as Sleepy Town, where best friends are the ones with floppy ears, loved coats, and sometimes missing an eye, or a leg. Maybe this is our saving grace~these memories. To right all the times we were too impatient, too busy, too absent. Maybe these times of rocking chairs, lullabies, stolen kisses on the eyelids and nuzzles of the neck~memories take hold and we savor them and wish, oh how we wish, to have them once more. Just. One. More. Time. it is because of you that I believe in miracles~

20 February 2008

So I ran across this, right, while reading through a favorite blog of mine and clicked on it just out of curiosity! Here's my fairie name. I thought it ironic and oh so neat that it's the fairy that loves Winter, just as I do! What's your fairy name?!
Your fairy is called Berry Goblinfrost
She is a bringer of riches and wealth.
She lives in fruit orchards and vineyards.
She is only seen during the first snow of winter.
She wears red, cerise and purple berry colours. She has gentle green wings like a butterfly.

19 February 2008

My birthday is this month and it's been such a happy time thus far. And the best thing is that it's only getting better. I'm becoming more comfortable with knowledge that I won't be returning to my classroom next schoolyear. Johnny is truly enjoying having me home and I get to see so much of Jenny and her family. There's been more time for friends, more time to read, to rest, to just walk outside and listen to the wind. Life is so fragile and that was deeply impressed upon me during the recovery period. What we can't change must be accepted, dealt with, and a way found to enjoy the difference. I do believe I'm finding it. And it's a very peaceful acceptance.

07 February 2008

It Happened

Earlier this evening I came across something I've never seen before. Four pages of paper with scribbling and phrases written on both back and front. I don't recall ever seeing them, but I was the author. They were among some papers in a drawer of our desk and were written in the days immediately following the accident. I do not feel like going into the scribblings nor all of the phrases. They hurt too much. I do want to tell you, though, of one~

"I saw ddy"

this one written phrase ripped through my heart. Proof that I did see him, that I did want to go to him, and that I was sent back. Proof that the accident did happen, that it changed our lives, that it is in the past, and that life does go on. But it hurts and I don't think crying will ever make it go away.

02 February 2008

It's my birthday month!
and you know what?
I think I'll celebrate all month!

28 January 2008

26 January 2008

A dear friend of ours made a recent trip to Moscow and took some amazing pictures. This one struck me for several reasons. First of all, it's amazing in the colors and ornate touches. And yet this was built in a communist country where beauty was not shared with everyone~only the elite. Secondly, that I would never have expected to see a building like this in Moscow. I had a very different image of Moscow and her architecture. Snapshots such as this one caused me to go online and look at other buildings just as ornate, just as colorful. Thanks, Jim France, for bringing this new knowledge and beauty to my world~

18 January 2008

A dear friend sent a video that just touched my heartstrings and I wanted to share it with you. Apparently this is someone that is trying out much like the American Idol show and this is his act, if you will. It's on YouTube and I hope you can just click and see it. I think he has talent and what is sung has always been one of my favorite songs for decades. In fact, it was played at our Jenny's wedding and brought tears to many. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did and that it brings a smile to your heart just as it did to mine. And as always, may you have a very blessed tomorrow~
Terry Fator, What a Wonderful World

14 January 2008

This image grabbed my heart. And wouldn't let it go. O precious Lord, how great Thou Art.

06 January 2008

A friend of mine, Angela Reese, took this picture as she and her family were hiking Rag Mountain in Virginia. Never heard of the area, but when I saw this snapshot of a creek they crossed, it hit me~our sins and our past wash away just as this water flows over its stones and debris. I love the way God uses subtle nudges to remind us of His presence and His love. There are times I feel so insignificant and unworthy of all that He has provided for. What an awesome, awesome Father I worship and adore.

If you read my family blog, you already know that Friday afternoon was heartrending for us. It is still resounding through our hearts and minds. We took time today to just be alone and allow Him to comfort us and for us to acknowledge the many blessings we've received. We know He is in control; we know He will prevail; and we know, without a shadow of doubt, that He will continue to bless us even with the challenges thrown at us. Just like the stones and debris this water flows over, He will continue to take us over the obstacles. Thank you, Father, for loving us so much~I shall continue to praise you and tell others how great You are.