Friday, May 09, 2008

New "Address"

Please come to my new blog!

Along the Narrow Path on Wordpress

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Ho, Ho, Hectic!

It's Wednesday and that means only 1 1/2 days of school after this until Christmas break! I'm so ready for the break and time with my family. John put up the icicle lights this weekend. After two days of switching cords and rearranging strings that weren't working, they are finally working and they are beautiful! We're all proud of the way our house looks this season.

It's been hectic with school band and orchestra concerts (although I love seeing the girls play), piano students, work, church, preparing for Christmas, shopping and getting gifts ready for extended family/co-workers/students, etc. Most days I start at 5:30 a.m. and don't stop doing things until I go to bed. Things have been a little stressful at church, too, as there are some issues of division and negativity that we are trying to deal with.

Yesterday I was about to melt-down. John was at a meeting. I was being pretty irritable with the girls. I needed to make some cookies to bring to work today (it was my group's turn to provide goodies). Kristine offered to help me. I told her I was feeling stressed and apologized for being so grumpy. She said, "The best thing for you to do is pray, Mom." Then she told me, "Everyone has grumpy days, Mom, it's okay." I hugged her and kissed her. God blessed me through her loving words. She is something else! Then while we rolled cookie rough with our hands and squished Hershey kisses into the warm cookie balls, we made silly jokes and laughed. It was wonderful. I've been reading "The Lion, Witch and Wardrobe" to her at bedtime, a chapter a night and that's been really fun, too.

Each time I start to have a pity party for feeling stressed, behind on my to-do list, or short on money to cover obligations, God reminds me how blessed I am! Then I humbly return to His lap and ask His forgiveness. It's true. If I started counting all the blessings in my life, I could go on and on. Even though things are "tight", we have such a nice home - a palace compared to most in the world. We have food every day to eat and our vehicles, though in need of some attention, are running and really nice compared to lots I see around town that are about to fall apart! I have such an amazingly loving family and parents that gave me a legacy of love and knowing Jesus. I have my health, which is an especially bittersweet reminder when I think of my friend's niece who recently died of breast cancer (she was my age) and another friend of mine in Las Cruces is going through chemotherapy for it.

With all the debates over saying "Merry Christmas" and trying to figure out what my role is in those issues, the thing that's been ringing in my heart is that Jesus did come and He lives in us and we need to share that love with everyone, believer or not. I'm full of that love right now. Thank you, Lord!

Sunday, December 04, 2005

Christmastime is Here

I'm praying to keep my focus on Christ and not get caught up in the stressful materialism in the stores.

We put up the tree last night, but hav yet to put on the ornaments. We have all kinds of fun, Christmasy stuff that will be put out all around the house, adding to the festive atmosphere. To top it off, it's cold and cloudy outside. Good weather to stay in and decorate. ~contented smile~

I'm off to Target ~grin~ to buy some gift cards for a few nieces and nephews, then home to finish up around the house. It's nice to have a quiet afternoon to do as I please. Thank you, Lord!

Monday, November 28, 2005

To Target, or not to Target?

It's my fault. I prayed that God would keep me humble. Don't EVER pray for that! Don't pray for patience, either, take my word for it.

(just kidding)

I was hot under the collar at Target because they banned the bell ringers from the Salvation Army from their stores. I wrote an e-mail to the CEO, I sent e-mails to everyone I knew, I was on a crusade! Then I found out today that although it's true they banned the bell ringers, the Target corporation gives millions to the Salvation Army and partners with them for hurricane relief and giving gifts to needy families. Boy, do I feel stupid! I should have checked with Target when I heard the rumors, instead of going by second-hand sources. I learned this lesson before, but it's been a while and I've slept since then. No excuse, I know. Hopefully this time it will stick and I'll remember next time I'm faced with some news that disturbs me so. Go straight to the source to verify information - straight to the SOURCE.

Interestingly, the best wisdom was given to me by two friends who are quite a bit younger than I, which added to the humility lesson. Thank goodness they were willing to tell me their thoughts and insights. I'm always open to hear - I don't want to be crusading for the wrong cause or for no cause. If I do, someone please stop me.

So, my girls and I rejoiced that we don't have to boycott Target. ~sheepish smile~ There were sighs of relief and cheers when I announced that to them tonight.

I do pray God will show me when and where I can speak up for Him. I want to put action to my beliefs and my words of commitment to Jesus Christ. Show me, Lord, and I'll do what you want me to do.

Sick Day

Well, I took a sick day today. I was still weak and achy when I woke up so I went back to bed. It's been a good day. John had taken a vacation day so we got to spend lots of time together.

The aches are starting to fade and I feel good having caught up on some tasks on my to-do list that were hanging over my head. Boy, does that feel good! Do you know the feeling? The bothersome gnawing in your stomach when your to-do list is bulging with items for you? You keep procrastinating because it is simply overwhelming and you don't even know where to start.

I've received wonderful advice about this. A wise friend once told me to think of it as a syllabus for a class in college. You look at the syllabus and become overwhelmed thinking, "I'm going to accomplish all of this by the end of the semester?!" But you don't tackle it all at once, it isn't all due at once. You take one task at a time and by the end of the semester, lo and behold, you made it! Of course this same friend was very frugal and would follow me around with a calculator as I bought cans of Diet Coke, telling me how much I would save if I stopped buying soda. I didn't listen to that little smidgen of advice!

Back to the To-Do list dilemma: My mom told me years ago, "Just start one thing, it doesn't matter which one, and once you get going you'll feel better." She was right! Like when the dishes are piled up so high you think it will take a few weeks of elbow grease just to see countertop again. It's so much easier to walk away and think "I'll do it later." Nevermind that the neighborhood cockroaches are moving in and setting up a fiesta in your honor among the dried-on taco salad plates. Getting started is the hard part. That's true for many obstacles we face isn't it? Just getting started, taking that first step or jumping in with both feet.

We saw a skit about this on "The Amanda Show" once. Amanda was playing a superhero named, "The PROCRASTINATOR". She looked the part, complete with cape and Spandex. People would rush to her screaming for help and she would respond by striking a noble pose, hands on hips and declaring with echoing sound effect, "I will..........EVENTUALLY!" Of course she never responded in time. Don't wait too long, or eventually may become "too late." ~grin~

The roaches will have to find another spot to party. Sorry guys.