reader appreciation award!

Big thanks and shout-out to Reena aka Maheshwari, for the Reader Appreciation award!  She is a certified yoga teacher and has a BA in Psychology!  (Can you imagine her thoughts when she reads my blog?) ha!!  You can read more about her and her journeys HERE!  Thanks again, my friend!!!

Recipients of the award are asked to:

  1. Identify the awards and who gave them to you.
  2. Post the Logo on your blog.
  3. Share 7 items about yourself.
  4. Nominate 5-10 other bloggers to receive this award, and notify them on their blogs.

So let”s get started!!!  Seven things you don’t know about me….(just 7?)

1.  I would rather die than camp.

2.  Strawberry shortcake is probably my favorite dessert…or peach cobbler…or any cobbler..

3.  Yes, I color my hair and yes, I am almost completely gray!

4.  I once got picked up by a stranger (car trouble) in the middle of a storm on a highway.  How naive…

5.  I have probably broken about 13 bones in my life…(read: not graceful)

6.  I love making my husband laugh, more than anything!

7.  I could probably be a vegan, except for my love for meat.

So here are a few of MY favorite blogs out there in the WORLD WIDE WEB:

1.  Under the flaps

2.  Cat in water

3.  My plant based family

4.  Normal for Norfolk

5.  Foodimentary

You can always find something new and creative with these bloggers!  Congrats to them too!!  And thanks again, Reena!!

a woman of grace…

Today I wanted to share an email I received from Pam Kanaly.  If you don’t know who she is, you should definitely check her out HERE.  She has one of the sweetest spirits I know and also has a huge heart for single mothers.  Her ministry is called Alive Ministries and is based in Oklahoma.  Check out their Survive ‘N’ Thrive Conference for single moms in Oklahoma City.  She also has a book/bible study called “Will the real me please stand up” that is fabulous and you will love her fresh approach and enthusiasm for the Lord……Ok.  let me share this as we prepare for Good Friday and Easter Sunday…

When I was a college student at Texas Tech, a friend of mine in ministry gave me a paper authored by Dr. Keith Maxwell depicting the cross and Jesus’ suffering from a medical viewpoint. The manuscript was penned from his perspective. He quoted, “What if Jesus came into my emergency room after the crucifixion?” He continued to expand on the idea that as a doctor he’d seen multiple life-threatening injuries with people hanging on to life by a shoestring: motorcycle accidents, gun shot wounds, barbed wire beatings, and much more. He somehow “thought” He was ready for what he would discover in his research.

 

I don’t like horror movies or gruesome stuff, especially when it involves someone I love, like Jesus my Lord. Goodness, at Easter I’d much rather focus on the loveliness of spring and the yellow daffodils. But not to take the time to remember Jesus’ suffering on the cross would rob me of a deeper Easter experience. After all, isn’t that what His followers should feel compelled to do?

 

Jesus was 100% God and 100% man, which meant He fully felt the pain of the cross in a physical way just like you and I would. Though we cannot begin to comprehend it, we can ask the Lord to enable us to glean from the research done on this subject.

 

– By the time Jesus was crucified, He’d been up well over 24 hours without sleep.

 

– Jesus had already that day walked 2 and ½ miles before He carried His own cross.

 

– Twelve to fourteen times in the world the phenomenon of a health condition known as hemathidrosis has been recorded with humans. One of them was Jesus Christ. It’s a condition due to severe stress and agony where a person actually exudes blood from every sweat gland. Instead of perspiring sweat, they drip blood and eventually die. However, in the case of Jesus He didn’t bleed to death. The cool Israeli night air chilled the capillaries constricting the blood flow, only prolonging the suffering.

 

– Scourging was a hellacious procedure invented by the Romans for criminals (forbidden to ever be imposed upon a Roman citizen.) The victim was stripped naked and tied by his wrists to a post with his back and legs exposed. Thirty-nine lashes from the neck to the top of the ankles were inflicted by two robust soldiers. At the end of the whip dangled leather straps, 6 to 7 feet long with a shod made of cattle bone at the end, similar to a sinker you would use for fishing. Upon each blow, it’d lift small shards of muscle out of the skin. Each lash embedded nine lacerations, two inches long and ¾ of an inch deep – perfect bait for the birds.

 

– Every strike made upon the flesh would have taken 180 stitches. Multiply that by thirty-nine lashes and you have 2000 stitches.

 

– Jesus was beaten in the face and head. Certainly His mouth was tattered thin like paper where His teeth were likely protruding through His lips.

 

– The cross itself was made of rough unfinished splinters of wood. Jesus carried the cross through the streets with the Romans’ purpose of total humiliation.

 

– Jesus was mocked as “King of the Jews,” and wore a crown of thorns. Each thorn, as sharp as an ice pick, was ½ inch long. Blows to the head hammered the crown into his head touching the outer bone of the skull.

 

– Jesus bore the wounds on His wrist and feet. Romans learned that if they drove spikes through the wrists instead of the palms, the arteries and veins would be avoided allowing the criminal to hold up his body weight. Such a procedure allowed the victim to hang on the cross longer. Crucifixion was never intended to kill quickly but to torment slowly.

 

– The tough part of hanging on the cross was breathing out. In order to do so, the sufferer would have to pull up against the spikes in his feet to get air, scraping his back against the splinters. Such a reality infers a deeper meaning on Jesus’ last words which were uttered in vigorous labor: “Behold your Son. It is finished.”

 

– Jesus physical suffering alone is beyond our ability to comprehend, but it was only a sign of a much deeper kind of suffering: His anguish of the spirit. When Jesus died, the face of His heavenly Father was hidden, and He was torn from the presence of God. He had enjoyed unbroken fellowship with The Almighty from all eternity and now faced hell itself.

 

Why did Jesus suffer?…..because all our sins were placed on Him. He took the punishment we deserved: judgment and hell. And why did He do this?…..because of His love for you and me and His desire for us to enter into a heavenly eternity.

 

Today Jesus Christ sits victoriously at the right hand of God. I rejoice. I celebrate. I shout songs and praises of glorious hallelujahs! His love for us is totally incomprehensible, and I receive it with intense appreciation (the best I know how). As long as God gives me the opportunity to breathe, I shall live for Jesus MY King.

 

Now, my beloved friend, with all that being said, I ponder: How will you approach good Friday and Easter morning?

 

Most reverently,

Pam

Porcelain Unicorn…

British film director Sir Ridley Scott launched a global film making contest for aspiring directors. It’s titled “Tell It Your Way”.

There were over 600 entries.The film could be no longer than three minutes, contain only 6 lines of narrative & be a compelling story.

The winner was “Porcelain Unicorn” from American director Keegan Wilcox.
It’s a story of the lifetimes of two people who are totally opposite, yet, very much the same – all told in less than 3 minutes.

You’ll see why it won.

Click here: Porcelain Unicorn

quiet day today…

Just me and the deer today….

They are getting bolder and bolder….coming in reeeeally close.  She didn’t even care that I was standing on the porch taking her picture, while (insert drama here) mosquitoes were giving birth in my hair, multiplying in large numbers and biting me all over my body!!!!  FACT……. THEN..

The BABY came out to play!!  Actually he is a twin, but I don’t know where his little friend was hiding…he is just so cute and bounds and bounces everywhere!

Suddenly it was like a picnic!  Everyone was there!  However,  they all left once they saw me doing the mosquito dance, waving my arms, ducking and slinging my camera.  It wasn’t pretty.

The grass is so high in that picture you can barely see her!!

Later in the day I just drove around and took some pictures of the ranch…..such a very nice, quiet day…

“Don’t underestimate the value of doing nothing, of just going along, listening to all the things you can’t hear, and not bothering.” ~ Winnie the Pooh

going home…

I don’t know which is … homier….city life in Phoenix (which I’m used to)… or the country life in Freedom, that I’ve grown to love!  Well, let’s see…..city…

OR…. country …

Ok…that first little guy was about 6 feet off our porch….chillin’.

And I KNOW that I said that I wouldn’t be doing any blogs while I was here at the ranch, since I’m supposed to be CONCENTRATING on writing this BOOK!!!

But sometimes, things are just so stinking pretty, that I just have to jump up and take a picture.  So, for the next couple of weeks I will be doing just that.  Jumping up, snapping pics and then sitting down and trying to focus……

Please.  How can I concentrate?????

So….yes, I’m loving both….(and I can shop online….)

fiddlin’ around again…

Had to take a break from writing and drive around a bit.  Wowsers…lots of deer!

I started to think they were all the same guy and he knew some shortcuts around the ranch….but then I found Waldo….can you find him?

He’s there and he’s looking right at ‘cha!!!

I made my way back to the house….then found this guy laying in the grass……peek a boo!

Back to work!

ooopsy…I’m back!

Ok, I just couldn’t stand it anymore.  I miss you….(I hope each one of you got a tear thinking I was talking specifically to YOU)  But I have been writing…proof follows…

Ok, that isn’t proof that I’m writing…but it IS proof that I’m messy…..remember my beautiful dining room table used to look more like this…

And at one time it had a HANDMADE, PEOPLE! quilt on it…..

But that was during the sewing season….and yes, there is such a thing as a sewing season, I’m just sure of it.

But while I’m here to write my book, sometimes I get a bit distracted.  For example, there was a MOOSE on our property!  How cool is that?  Well, I had to go check it out…

In that picture she is giving me the stink eye….

I say, “she” because the female moose doesn’t have the paddle thingy’s…..AND…brace yourself…

She is on Shiz (don’t know how to spell it but that is how it’s prounounced) creek…….so what does that REALLY make her?????   Wait for it……..

Yes, she is up Shiz creek without a paddle!!!!!!

Oh mercy…..I thought that up all by myself and am still chuckling….

Goodnight!!

the seizure…

When Clay was three months old we were, once again, setting up camp in the hospital.  He had his third bout with pneumonia and was placed in the Intermediate Care Unit of the hospital.  I am ashamed to say that I was relieved when he was sent to this unit because it gave me a chance to go home and rest and take care of Bret, who was 2 1/2 at the time.  (That last statement seems odd because how do you rest and take care of a 2 1/2 year old?)  Regardless, it was a time for me to relax for a while knowing that there were nurses stationed in his room at all times.

I dropped off Bret at my mothers house and my father and I drove to the hospital.  I had an odd feeling about him that morning and would find out in the years to come,  the strange feeling in the pit of my stomach was not to be ignored.

We got to the 3rd floor and I my heart was beating so hard I thought it would pop out of my chest.  I wanted to cry;  not the random tear down the cheek, but the kind of cry that brings uncontrollable breathing and sobbing.  I could see that there was no one attending his crib and ran to the side and saw that he was having a grand mal seizure.

His little eight pound body was contorted in such a way that at first I didn’t know how to pick him up.  His legs and feet were bent backwards, as was his head and he was in a full out backward bend!  I was screaming for someone…anyone…to help me!  The nurse came and said she would page the doctor and I know that if I hadn’t had Clay in my arms I would have knocked her off her feet.  Oh, God!  Please help us!

FIFTY THREE minutes went by before Clay was administered an anti-seizure drug.  I had handed my father the baby and raced out to the lobby to call our neurologist.  This was in 1988, so I didn’t have the convenience of a cell phone.  The neurologist was able to locate the doctor on call and the medication was ordered.  I am not sure if the delay was on the part of the doctor or the in house pharmacy or the nurse whom I officially despised.  But he received his medicine and his body lay limp in his little crib.

I don’t know how long I stayed by his side that day.  His body was covered in perspiration, as was mine, and he had a very blank stare.  From that day on, until his last breath was taken, he never took another bottle. The darkness of that seizure had not only removed his ability to swallow but had also devoured his sight.

ahh…the conference…

Wow.  What a wonderful writing/speaking conference!  I never imagined in my wildest dreams….ok…..wait.  Maybe I haven’t told you my dreams before.  Sometimes they are funny.  Sometimes they are wacky.  Most of the time they are just plain wierd.

Back to the conference.  In my WILDEST dreams I never thought I could learn so much.  The speakers were fabulous and it was wonderful having editors and book publishers on hand.  I was very prepared for this.  I had my pencils, my highlighters, some post-its, business cards (though I have no business), and perfect shoes.  Honestly, isn’t it all about the shoes?

So now I can settle down with my notes and glean all the information I can to piece together my story.  It will certainly take some time but I have an abundance of that.  Just sit back and relax, while I make my sweet-tea (yes! it was everywhere!) and take up residence in front of the computer.

I’ll keep you posted!   My….don’t I look skinny….and taller?

eeek!….

Ok, today I leave for CHARLOTTE, NORTH CAROLINA!!  What?  Why am I going?  Well……there is a speaking/writing conference called, “She Speaks” that is being held over the weekend and I just figgerd….(I should probably not speak, ‘texan’ while I’m there) anywho….I FIGURED that I would grab some REAL advice on writing.

Now, don’t get all excited here.  (?)  But if I am going to WRITE a book, I should probably know how to do it.  Yes, I want to write a book.  What?  What will it be about?  Hmm…..verrrrry good question.  I definitely know three things…..1) how to take care of a medically fragile child   2) how to keep your sanity when having a medically fragile child  3)how to laugh when you are taking care of a medically fragile child.

People, I didn’t have Clay for 15 1/2 years to just keep all this bottled up inside.  I might, just MIGHT, be able to help someone out there in book-land.  I am praying about this and would appreciate your prayers also.  AND IF THIS ISN’T THE DIRECTION THAT THE LORD WANTS ME TO GO….well, I pray that I will have a little godly discernment and pull back.  But in the meantime…………..I’m meeting Susan in North Carolina for an AWESOME weekend!

I hope I learn something…..more than just how hot/humid North Carolina is in July.