Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Notes from Rose Hill

This morning I've spent about three hours writing on From the Dust of Rose Hill and have gotten about 1800 words in. It's slow going but hopefully good work. I've lost a journal, it seems, that has nearly a chapter's worth of work in it. I have so many strewn about the house and cars, so I'm hoping to find it soon. It irks me when I lose things.

This WIP is coming to me in disconnected visions. When I get one, I write it, even if it's out of order. The morning's work consisted of working on the ending and the beginning, and I have found that having the two files side by side has helped me coordinate the two and come full circle. Gwen, Sonny's anorexic and drug addicted sister has made her entrance to the story line, and Sonny is facing a grim decision.

I have a character outline of sorts for each of my five main characters which is helping quite a bit. And I have constructed a loose outline for the entire work, actually two. We'll see which one wins out as we go along. I really need to get to researching the whole Viet Nam era and also the Iraqi war. I'm finding it a bit hard to get motivated for that, but I hope to get some new books from the bookstore on those subjects. A relative of mine was reading Letters from Nam at the campout the other night. At least I think that was the title. I might have to borrow that book or find it on Amazon. I don't think it's a recent release, but I don't really know.

On the homefront, it's a quiet rainy day in Paris. I'm hoping the weather will clear up so that we can take CWGIII trunk or treating tonight up at the church. They haven't sent me any transcription for today, but I sent off a huge file last night. I think God was giving me a nice day off to work on the book. So how's your day going or been?

Monday, October 30, 2006

Carnival Begins

If you haven't mosied over to the Carnival of Christian Writers, it's well worth your time to do so. I didn't have a post included in this particular round, but I will as soon as my work schedule allows me time to get that done. There are some great posts included from what I've read so far. Gina has done an outstanding job coordinating this, so please take time to read and comment and maybe even join!

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Dry Bones

This past week my son had to pick his favorite Bible character and dress up like him for Awanas. He chose Ezekiel, and he was the only Ezekiel at the party. I took pictures but haven't gotten them developed yet. He wore a black robe and a peach-striped towel on his head. I painted a mascara beard and moustache on him, and he toted a long stick. And of course I thought he was the most adorable one there.

Ever since Wednesday night I've had the story of Ezekiel on my mind, particularly this scripture: Chapter 37, Verse 11 Then he said to me: "Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They say, 'Our bones are dried up and our hope is gone; we are cut off.' 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them: 'This is what the Sovereign LORD says: O my people, I am going to open your graves and bring you up from them; I will bring you back to the land of Israel. 13 Then you, my people, will know that I am the LORD, when I open your graves and bring you up from them. 14 I will put my Spirit in you and you will live, and I will settle you in your own land. Then you will know that I the LORD have spoken, and I have done it, declares the LORD.' "

I admit I've been in a dry place--and for far too long. I've been discouraged over our hunt for a home church. It's been a year now, and we are still kicking around local churches like we were square dancing and the caller has called for a partner change. This past Sunday we decided to give the local Assemblies of God another chance. The last time we visited a few years ago there were about 15 of us. This past Sunday there were about the same. And even though we had a good service and a good message, my heart was grieving. This should not be, I told myself. What has happened here that has crippled this congregation? The Sunday before that we attended the church where my son goes to Awanas on Wednesday nights. I can't do this every Sunday, my soul whispers. This is dead and dry, and I just can't sit here and pretend I'm happy. I can't tell you how many different churches we've attended over the past year. They can't all be dead, can they? It's me, isn't it God? I'm not where You want me. But where is that, God? And why is it so difficult to figure out? And why is it that it's such a struggle?

This morning my heart is heavy. I've been going and taking my son to church, because that is what you're supposed to do. I was taught you don't miss church on Sunday. No matter what is going on in your life, on Sunday morning you get up and go to church. On Sunday night you get up and go to church. On Wednesday night, you get dressed and you go to church. I hear in my head my mother's voice, "Get up and take that boy to church." And I hear my reply to her, "Mama it's so hard. You never faced the question of where. That issue was settled for you the day Granny and Papa joined Gregory's Chapel." And until I turned 22, that was the only church I had ever known. When I moved away to another town, I drove the 60 miles home on the weekends to be there. When I married, we joined a local church and were very active there until things happened beyond our control and we were left homeless again. Again we found ourselves driving the 60 miles back to Gregory's Chapel. But my son is in school now, and we just can't do that now. You don't know what you got 'til it's gone. What we take for granted today may be gone tomorrow. And it's left a gaping hole in my heart. And in my life. And until this situation is resolved, I can have no peace.

I hear my Granny's voice, "What's important is that you go. Get in there, get involved, and serve the Lord." She's right. She's oh so right. "Just back yer ears and do it, Cin." I hear my sister's voice, " A double-minded man is unstable in all his ways." I don't want to be double-minded. I need clarity. I need resolve. I need stability. Lord, grant me the courage to just back my ears and do it. Lord, don't leave me cut off. Bring me up out of this grave and breathe life in me again. I'm in this valley of dry bones, God. And I can't see my way out. But I know You will not leave me. Breathe new life into these bones God. Settle me in my own land, Lord. Don't leave me cut off.

There's way too much at stake.

Wednesday, October 25, 2006


Today I will post the first of a new series, Worship Wednesday by guest blogger, PT2006. I hope you enjoy these mini devotions and that they bless you as you go about your day. If you enjoy her post or have something to add to the discussion, please feel free to post comments.

“The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord: and he delighteth in his way. Though he fall, he will not be utterly cast down: for the Lord upholdeth him with His hand.” Psalms 37:23, 24 KJV

The book of Psalms contains a variety of petitions, prayers, and praises. Many of them can be recited today as applicable to this generation as they were in ancient times. Many a comfort can be found in the book of Psalms. Just as the original compositions soothed a raging King Saul, they soothe a variety of maladies today.

I like the way the Contemporary English Version translates these verses: “If you do what the LORD wants, He will make certain each step you take is sure. The LORD will hold your hand, and if you stumble, you still won’t fall.”

God does not always show us what lies ahead in our lives, but through His Word he shines a light on our path. As we are faithful to listen to Him and follow in the way He leads, we can walk sure-footed regardless of the terrain. Even on the boisterous seas, Peter found a solid place to walk as he kept his eyes on the Master. When his focus became dim, he began to sink. But Peter was not utterly cast down, for Jesus took hold of his hand and lifted him out of the water.

Take courage today and know that as long as you do what the LORD wants, He will hold your hand and keep you from falling. --PT2006

Monday, October 23, 2006


My sister finally sent me the highlights of the Eat Thou Honey conference held recently in Cordova, Tennessee:

Friday night, Dr. Paula White delivered a "BIG" Word. BIG is the acronym she used for Blessings In God. For her text, she chose Luke 1:26-37. Her opening statement was this: "If you can make it happen, it is not of God". She added that we must make room for the BIG in our lives. Her outline followed these things concerning "The BIG". The "BIG" has been spoken, it has been demanded, it has been declared, and it has been delivered. She posed this question, “Are you in position to receive "The BIG"? She took the biblical account of Mary mother of Jesus and paralleled it with our receiving the BIG in our lives. She illustrated the point with her personal experiences with mail order packages. You can speak your order, demand your order, it can be declared as sent and delivered, but you will miss out on receiving it if you are not at home when it arrives. She equated the "you may pick up your package" notice with the grace of God. He has left a note, your package is available, if you want it, you must pick it up for yourself. Stay in position, make room for the "BIG", God will deliver as He has promised.

Pastor Darlene McCarty took Galatians 6:9 and I Corinthians 1:9 for her text. She preached a message that complemented the message of Dr. Paula White. The common thread though out her message was one concerning our position in Christ. She quoted Tommy Tenny as saying; "God pre-positions you for favor to position you in favor." Her admonition to the audience, "Stay in position"! She cited the biblical examples of Leah, Hannah, and Esther. She wrapped up with a paraphrase of Psalms 22:3 about God being enthroned on the praises of His people. She added, for God to become enthroned on our praises, He has to come down from His throne on high. He must step out of His heavenly habitat to fulfill His word. When we do our part He does His.

Friday night's message was entitled "Why won't people pray?" Pastor Darlene Bishop took Philippians 4:6 for her text. She emphasized the portion that states: "everything by prayer". She spoke of three types of prayer; the delight prayer, the desire prayer, and the desperate prayer. She used King Hezekiah as an example of what prayer can do. Firstly, he prayed a prayer of delight. He recalled the goodness, faithfulness, and magnificence of God. Secondly, his prayer was one of desire. His desire or request was for an extension of life. Thirdly, his prayer was a prayer of desperation. He prayed for God to give life in spite of the "word" the Lord had already spoken to him through the Prophet Isaiah.

Pastor Bishop's exhortation included this statement: "If you talk to God on a regular basis, then you won’t need to ‘work’ Him up, or call Him down." As an aside to the message, she added; "women can be anything they want to be and do anything they want to do, but they can not be the head". She went one step further and declared, "when men take their rightful position, the glory of God will fall."

Sounds like we missed some good messages. Maybe next year!

Sunday, October 22, 2006

The Case of the Missing Socks

Okay, Lisa and I have discussed this before. Well, it's happened to me again. One day this past week CWGIII could find neither clean underwear nor socks for school. (I normally lay his clothes out, but this time I had been caught up in transcription work late at night.) Now because I do laundry almost every day that rolls besides Sundays (and sometimes Sunday, if it's really bad), I knew that the child had clean clothing--somewhere. I argued this point with him to no avail. Finally when I went to check his underwear/sock drawer I had to agree. There were none to be found. There were the standard strays but no matches. Hm. And I had just bought him a six-pack of both undies and socks. Where could they be?

A quick trip to the dryer got him a pair of underwear and socks, but I noticed that in that load there were no others. That's odd. Really odd. So I begin the search. Under MY bed mind you--where the little scamp watches primetime, there were about four pairs of socks--all dirty. Under his bed there were three more. Okay. Looking better. But what about the undies???
I looked high and low--no undies. I said, "Son, what are you doing with your underwear when you take them off before your bath? Aren't you putting them in the laundry room?"
He assured me he was, that I just wasn't washing them, which is NOT the case, because there were none there to wash. Sigh.

Well, I don't know why, but it didn't occur to me to check his other drawers. I mean, when I put his clothes away while he's at school I always put them in the sock/underwear drawer. And please, don't make the mistake of calling it a "panty drawer," MOM!!! "Can't help it," I reply,"old habits die hard." (I grew up in a house full of girls, for Pete's sake.) Anyway, to make a long, drawn out story even longer, the missing new undies and several more pairs of socks were finally found stuffed down in the next to the bottom drawer underneath his jeans and shirts. When asked about this my son replied laughing, "Oh there they are. I forgot where I hid them." (Don't ask me why he's hiding them. I never got that out of him. Probably thought it funny. Or maybe he thought he wouldn't have to wear them if he hid them. Who can figure out a six year old? Laugh.)

So now his drawer is overflowing. I can quit blaming the dryer, even though I know for a fact it does eat them occasionally. And I guess I can be relieved that he's only hiding his own and not some teenage girl's. The day that happens I think I will just faint. But that's a different post.

Wednesday, October 18, 2006


11:50 p.m. and just finished a long file. Yippeee, I got more work waiting in the wings for tomorrow. Thank God for work!

Just a reminder: Be sure and check in over at Violet Voices for my latest post there, entitled "The Boss is In." Also, Gina over at Writer...Interrupted, the other blog I write for is starting a Carnival of Christian writers. Go here to participate.

Also, be on the lookout for a few guest appearances here and there. You just never know who might turn up sipping Coca-Cola or coffee beneath my wonderful wreath. Soon I will be celebrating my one year blogging anniversary. Can you believe that?

If you haven't stopped by here before or in a long while, take time to browse around. There are some oldie but goodie posts throughout the year that I think you'll like. Remember to visit my friends' blogs over there in the sidebar. And please do send your friends on over. I love finding new blogs to read.

Midnight and all's well. G'nite friends.

Monday, October 16, 2006

Rose Hill Update

In case anyone's keeping up with my current WIP, I haven't given up on it. If you'll notice on the bar graph at the bottom of the left hand column, I have just a tad over 5,000 words done. This is due mostly to the fact that I am getting regular work these days that I can't turn down. It pays the bills. And I must admit I'm at a standstill in the plot process.

The first novel I had pretty much mapped out completely before I began except for a couple of twists I added near the end. This one seems to be going much slower. Perhaps it's my reluctance to deal with the subject matter. Maybe the urgency is not there like it was with the first book. I don't know what it is exactly. I think it lacks focus. Last night I worked on a scene with Gwen in it that explores the dark innerworkings of her tormented mind. It was not a pretty scene. But life is not pretty at times. And how do I paint her out of the ugliness and into the beautiful light that is in finding her Redeemer? And how do I paint her brother, Sonny, the one who has already come to the Cross and found his way home but is struggling with Gwen's jealousy of him and her addictions that are destroying the family? He knows he should love Gwen into the Kingdom,. but Gwen is making life hell for everyone. What to do...I wring my hands in uncertainty. Family dynamics are not my forte. I should be an expert on dysfunctionality by now. (Is that a word?)

It's good for me, I suppose, to explore these things. I want to know what makes Gwen tick. I want to know what made Sonny different, more open to receiving Christ. They had the same childhood -- or did they? I want to know why Sonny can so readily lay down his burdens and give them to Christ and what keeps Gwen holding onto them, needing them so. These are the things I'm struggling with in the book. Sonny has his own struggles, his own bad memories of war, his own bad childhood memories to deal with. And now that his mom has died, he has the burden of keeping what's left of the family together. Will he be able to? Will Gwen find the path that leads to God? What secrets are unfolding throughout the course of the book and the 40 years it spans?

I'm overwhelmed. I'm still in the mulling stage and trying to write too. Once I figure it out I'm hoping the work will go faster. And no, I haven't sent off From Pharaoh's Hand yet. I'm deep into the revisions. Every time I read an author's suggestions I try to go back and look at my manuscript in light of those suggestions. I keep finding weak spots. I need an editor to mark it all up in red like my high school English teacher, Ms. Hawks, did. That's the only way I can tell if I'm getting anywhere. I wanted to have it submitted to at least one place by my own deadline of January 20, 2007. That will be a year to the day that I started. It's been an exciting journey. But it ain't over yet. Let's hope it's the start of a wonderful thing.

Sunday, October 15, 2006

Mission Memories

My sister just returned from the Eat Thou Honey Conference in Memphis, Tennessee. And since I didn't get to go, I'd like for her to share with us a rundown of the conference -- speakers, singers, blessings, lesson, etc. From what little she's shared with me, I'm sure a good time was had by all. Here is a link where you can read about Darlene McCarty, a dynamic and powerfully anointed servant of God. She and her husband were over the Youth of Tennessee in the Assemblies of God when I was in my early teens and young adult years going to church camps and youth conventions. Their ministry had a profound effect on my life, and I am grateful for the many sacrifices they've made throughout the years. I am glad God has blessed them and continues to bless their ministry.

It was during my teen years that Randel and Darlene introduced me to the world of Missions through the AIM program. When I was 16 I went with a group of teens led by Randel and Darlene and others to Leon, Mexico. I saw firsthand the impoverished conditions of the people living there. We did street witnessing and choir performances and saw many souls brought into the kingdom on that trip. I went on three other AIM trips in the following years: Montego Bay, Jamaica; Christiana, Jamaica; and Nassau, Bahamas. I know those don't sound like missionfields but believe me when I tell you that beyond the manicured beaches and tourist spots there lies a hurting, impoverished people that are hungry for the truth the Word.

In Montego Bay we stayed at a missionary's home and did tent services at night at the foot of the street. During the day we would go into the hills and witness door to door. Sometimes we would pass children playing barefoot in the dirt, a knobby cow grazing near a hut, a Rastafarian dealing marijuana. I will never forget the sight of those Blue Mountains as Air Jamaica touched down on the short runway over the ocean. Angie Johnson Griffin and Mike Glover were my witnessing partners. We ended the week by climbing Dunns River Falls in Ocho Rios.

The following year, I believe it was, we stayed in the center of the island in the Assemblies of God Bible College. I remember the New Year's Eve service at the Green Pond church in particular. We had all divided up in groups and attended different churches so that we could minister to more people. It was a beautiful way to ring in the New Year.

One of my most vivid memories of this trip was taking off from the airport at Montego Bay and circling over Kingston for what seemed like an eternity. I knew there was a problem before the pilot ever announced it. I could see bluish green liquid streaking my window. We were not gaining altitude. Jack Simon, the minister sitting by me and who is now a missionary in Colombia, South America, joked and shut the window. I wrote in my journal and prayed. The pilot said we would be landing in Kingston. Our landing gear was stuck in the out position, which is good that it wasn't stuck inside. We were leaking hydraulic fluid. We landed safely. They fixed the plane, and we took off again. IN THE SAME PLANE. When the plane finally landed in Miami or Nashville (I can't remember which ) we broke out into a chorus of God Bless America. This ole gal was never happier to be on American soil.

The trip to Nassau was just as memorable. We saw many lives changed there as well. I remember riding to services in the back of a furniture truck. I remember a double rainbow in the sky. I remember serving in the children's ministry. I remember the straw market. I remember Golden Gate Assembly of God where we ministered on New Year's. I remember singing, "Come on ring those bells. Light the Christmas Tree." The one common thread I remember is Randel and Darlene being there, our fearless leaders. And the Spirit of God that led them.

When you pray, pray for our pastors, our leaders, our missionaries, our workers in the field. They have an eternal impact on souls. They reach thousands of youth and adults that we could never reach. They give their lives to the Master's service. Please uplift them daily. And give. They need our support.

Friday, October 13, 2006

The Sound of Wishful Thinking

Recently I blogged about finding old sheet music and how that brought back beautiful memories of my piano teacher, Mrs. Choate. I am reliving those days and moments with my son now. He is in his second month of lessons and doing quite well. I sit and listen as he practices. Often he will ask me to play through the entire piece for him, so that he can hear the melody. We have a Yamaha keyboard that we use.

( I had a relative question why I was paying good money to someone else to teach him when I could have myself. But I think he will learn more and listen more to someone else than Mama. I think it's money well spent.) But back to the keyboard.

The keyboard is okay for learning where the notes are. It is horrible for learning interpretative skill. You just can't learn the softness and lightness of finger pressure needed to elicit certain sounds, even with weighted keys. I don't care what anyone tells you, a piece of equipment that runs off electrical current can never, NEVER duplicate the sound of hammers hitting strings. I have played both, and I prefer the actual piano over the keyboard. I am a purist when it comes to sound quality. If I had my druthers, I would have a baby grand sitting in my front room.
I can't afford one unless I find one secondhand somewhere. But I am looking.

I miss playing. I drove my family crazy practicing as a child. When I was about 12 I started playing for church services. I would play the piano or the organ, whichever spot was vacant. Whenever I would get the blues I would play. It seemed to soothe the beast inside, much like David playing for Saul. I left the old upright at Mama's when I married. My sister offered to bring it to me, but it's a huge instrument and sadly worn out. There are several keys that no longer play. And if you know anything about piano repair costs, that is not a cheap repair.
And so it sits there in my sister's living room sad and forlorn and silent. I used to be adament about her getting rid of it, but I told her recently it was okay, that I was searching for a replacement. Sometimes you just have to let go of the past and look forward to new dreams.

So Santa, I'm putting in my list early this year. You think you can find me a bargain somewhere? I'd settle for a small console if the sound was good. And I promise I've been good this year. Christmas, yikessssss!!!!! It's just around the bend.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Please Pray for the Vieres

My dear friend Diane from Prayers for our Prodigals is going through some hard times. Her mother-in-law is critically ill. Please visit this link for updates. There is a link to a video there as well. Please take a few moments to view the message and say a prayer for the Viere family.

Monday, October 09, 2006


Somewhere in the distance an old hoot owl is standing guard, his pale yellow eyes searching the darkness, his voice punctuating the soft summer night. Crickets are chirping in the undergrowth, and the bullfrogs are chiming in from across the pond. As if to answer, the trees rattle in the evening wind, and I shiver as I feel the night settling in. Another day has passed. Another sun has set.

I feel the cool dirt beneath my bare feet as I help the cedar swing along, it’s rusty chains creak out a rhythm to the symphony that surrounds me--that sweet soothing serenade of the night. The stars all sit and wink from above a few scattered clouds as the moon makes jewels of the crystal dewdrops on the grass.

My spaniel Maggie lies at my feet and licks her paws and pants. She smells something--a squirrel or rabbit and runs full speed across the drive, her nails clicking on the concrete. Her bark is quick and sharp and not at all afraid. A neighbor’s Labrador joins her in the pursuit, and the opera turns to a wild cacophony of yaps, growls, and snarls. The object of their disgruntlement harbored safely in a nearby tree looks down with beady eyes. Disinterested now, Maggie runs to me and licks my hand.

“Good girl,” I whisper. “Now settle down. Stay with Mama for awhile.”
A flash of light startles me as a brief flicker of lighting begins in a purple cloud above. The wind is picking up speed. A low rumble in the distance. Another streak of startling light, and then a fierce deafening clap of thunder causes me to jerk and Maggie to whimper. A drop of rain hits the awning over the swing, and then another, bouncing off the awning with muffled splats. A brief pause of silence ensues, and then a torrential downpour begins--drenching the dirt beneath my feet, soaking my pants legs, blowing the awning up and away. This is God meeting the needs of the thirsty soil. This is God watering his garden in the cool of the evening, blessing his handiwork--causing it to grow and flourish.

Eventually the brief storm abates, and the cadence slows to a steady , almost reverent rain. The earth soaks up the life-giving water. Maggie drinks from a nearby puddle as she shakes the droplets from her coat. I shake my soggy head in reply and laugh the laugh of a naughty child who has been dancing barefoot in the rain. These are the sounds of God. All of creation is His orchestra, and I am the awed and honored guest of this, His ever-changing, ever-beautiful, ever-so-holy masterpiece called life. Another day has passed. Another sun has set. And I am forever grateful to be one of the instruments of His will.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Band Aids and Big Toes

I have a Band-Aid on my big toe. I cut it on a piece of glass in the kitchen floor from one of my many mishaps. I was thinking this morning about how we sometimes just slap a Band-Aid on things and expect that to automatically fix it good as new. Like when you say, "I'm sorry," but you don't really mean it. You just want to end the argument. Or you don't want to admit that what you said or did was that a bad. But you know what? If you don't doctor that wound, take the time to baby it a bit and keep it clean, what does it do? It gets infected. It might even fester. Ewww. It might even have to be -- gulp -- amputated like my little Maggie's toe. Sometimes even with all you do, the damage is irreversible.

It's so important to be mindful of the words we choose. In the blink of an eye we can let things slip out that we can't take back. We can try to make amends, but the memory we've impressed will always be there. I'm guilty. I've said my share of ugly things. Why is it that we seem to feel so comfortable in saying exactly what we think especially with our closest loved ones? Shouldn't we be protecting them and nurturing them? Shouldn't we esteem our spouses as parts of ourselves and realize we are only doing harm to ourselves? I'm preaching to myself here. And no, the hubby and I haven't had a knock-down-drag-out today. It's just something that's on my mind.

Marriage is WORK. (That's for the benefit of all you single guys and gals out there.) And as I've stated before, I've grown lazy in a lot of areas of my life. And why is it when we do that, when we grow a little bit apathetic and cold that we look for someone else to blame? Truth is, my husband has his faults. All husbands do. What's even more shocking is that we wives have even more--more than the gray hairs we coat with Clairol to cover them up. But does Clairol fix them? No, it HIDES them. Just like this beige piece of stretchy elastic on my toe. I can't see the wound. But it's there. Covering it up doesn't make it go away any faster. It just keeps you from seeing it.

It's only when we allow the Holy Spirit to intervene that the healing begins to occur. Sometimes it cuts deep to the heart of the matter. Sometimes it is very, very painful to get out all that festering sin. We don't want to admit that we caused a wound -- or maybe that we received a wound at someone else's hand that we can't forgive. We have to deal with these things. Slapping a Band-Aid over it doesn't cut it.

I'm convicted today -- convicted by a Band-Aid on a big toe. Doesn't God use some of the oddest things, some of the simplest things to teach us?

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

Forever and Ever Amen

Please pray for Diane at Prayers for Our Prodigals. Her mother-in-law is in the hospital in serious condition. The family needs strength, mercy, and peace. I believe God is working on her prodigal through all of this. The Lord is able.

As I was driving home from taking Chase to school this morning, the song, "Places to Go and People to See" came on the radio. I'm not sure if that's the correct title, but if you listen to Southern Gospel, you've heard it. It talks about being homesick for heaven. This time of year is especially hard for me. I lost my mom in August and my Dad in October. And, as you've read before, I lost my grandmother this past July. Sometimes it seems I have more family over there than here. But that's not a bad thing. Heaven is home. It is a comforting thought to know that they are waiting.

I've also had missing bloggers Lisa and Mike on my mind today. It's been over a month since they've posted. And I know it may seem silly to worry. They may be busy. They may just be taking a blogging break. Could be that their computers are down. I don't know. But I miss them. And I pray that if anything is wrong that God will be there to help them with it.

I'm praying today for my father-in-law and my grandparents. I know they have some lonely days and days that they just don't feel good. I know that they would love to see us every day and have us with them more. God give them a good day today. God help me to show them I love them more.

I pray today for the families of the Amish girls. They never dreamed this could happen to their children. So much pain and shock they must be feeling. Surround them with your peace. Help them to forgive. God help those that are left behind to find comfort in You.

Be with my child at school today. Help him to learn a lot and to be a good student and friend. Watch over him, and protect him against evil. Lord, our children face a battleground every day. Be with him there. Protect my husband on the road and give him a good day. Be with all my extended family, each one. God you are good. Your grace is sufficent.

Be with me today as I work. Help me accomplish my goals and do it cheerfully. Renew my strength and my determination. Enliven me with your energy. Help me to be a blessing. And may all who stop by here feel your presence in their lives today.

In Jesus' precious and holy name.
Amen and Amen.

Monday, October 02, 2006

New Blog Look for an Old Blogger

Doing the happy dance this morning. Dave, my writer friend over at Writers in the Mist has fixed up my new blog image, and I couldn't be more pleased. It gives it a bit of a punch that it lacked. Thank you Dave for taking the time to tinker with my template. If you've never visited Dave or Writers in the Mist, take a few minutes and mosie on over. You'll like both blogs.

I'm going to keep this post short and sweet, as I have tons of work to get done this morning and absolutely TONS of laundry to go with it. As far as the campout goes, I'm getting too old and fat to sleep on the ground. This was the first time I'd ever really camped out other than the back yard. Putting up the tent was quite an experience. And it was no small tent. We bought a 7-man tent, so that it would accommodate a king-sized air mattress and Chase's cot. We got it on sale at Sears for 54 dollars, which I thought was pretty good.

I spent about four hours in the tent tossing and turning before having to take the 1/4 mile trek to the potty at 1 a.m. By 2 a.m. I had to make the trek again, (This is not unusual for me at home, but I don't have to go that far. LOL) and I ended up in my chair by the fire. I stayed there until sun up. It was fun watching the little and big faces pop out sleepily one by one. My little one woke up at 5 a.m. and missed me, which woke up a few more in the camp. I was only a few feet away, but I guess he thought the bears had gotten me. And yes, there are sometimes bears in Henry County, though I doubt there were any out there that night. Some adult said there was a big snake spotted in a tree, but I wondered if that was just to keep the boys out of the woods. I know it kept me out of them.

Cooking outdoors was fun. We had hamburgers and hotdogs and baked beans. The leader sent me and my husband back to town to get these supplies for our bunch--about 90 folks. We were running around Wal-Mart on a Saturday afternoon (and you know how harrowing that can be ) while the kids back at camp were on a one mile hike. I don't know which is worse come to think of it. You should have seen us with the three buggies. Chase was toasting marshmallows for breakfast at 5 a.m. I know, not the healthiest of breakfasts, but hey, we were camping. And by this time, I didn't have the strength to argue with him.

Besides the hike they got to shoot dog food into pails with slingshots, play tug of war, have a rain gutter regatta competition, and make pirate, I call them, "do-rags," eye patches, and parrots. They all wanted to be Dirty Dan, whoever that is. Maybe some of you can fill me in. They put on skits at the night council meeting around the campfire. Overall I think Chase had a great time. So much for keeping this short and sweet. Just too much to tell.

My favorite part was sitting around the fire and gazing up at the stars at 4 a.m. (And listening to the snores coming from the tents.) It's still debatable though, whether or not this old gal will be doing it again any time soon. (Next campout, Spookoree, is in October, which will be even colder.) Motherhood...ah the joy.

So that's where I've been. Now I've definitely got to get back to the grind. Tell me about your weekend. I missed you.

Sunday, October 01, 2006


Swamped with work this past week every day. Boy Scout family campout last night. No sleep and come home to more work. Slept 5 hours and got up and have worked all evening. Still not finished. Will tell you all about it probably tomorrow afternoon. Tuesday a.m. deadline...