I Don’t Know Her But I Love  Her 


I firmly believe in Matthew 6:4…so that your giving may be in secret. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.

And this is something I have always taught my children,  but I can’t help and share this. 

Yesterday was a mad rush all day long. From sick dogs to losing Adam’s basketball jersey….and having to be at the gym by 4:30. We almost skipped dinner (Well, I was screaming that we were skipping dinner) when the jersey magically appeared on the floor in the backseat of the car!  

With very little time left, we agreed to eat Chinese. The waitress seats us next to a tiny frail elderly woman, she immediately smiled and greeted all the kids. My niece Sophia said, “I don’t know her but I already love her” as we got settled in to our booth. 

We all were eating, when the lady said, “Excuse me, can you tell me how much the buffet is?” (She had been sipping on a drink, I assumed she had already eaten)

I told her how much it was, when I glance at my own table. The kids stopped eating. They would not touch another bite of their food. Sophia started whispering for me to pay for her dinner, but I didn’t know how to do it without the possibility of offending or making her uncomfortable. We decided that if she was still there after we ate that I would pay for her dinner. With the decision made, the kids immediately wanted to leave!!

Kids all made a point to give her their biggest smiles and tell her to have a good day as they were leaving. 

I told the waitress to add a meal on the ticket for her, I paid the bill of $70 and we quietly left not mentioning it again.  

I spent all of my cash and needed to run by an ATM to get more before we went to the basketball game. But decided to go home and change my clothes first. I put my coat on and walked out the door in a panic because (shocker) we were late. Put my hand in my pocket, and pulled out $50. (Seriously God?)

After games, grocery shopping and Dairy Queen…the money, well, was once again gone and I didn’t have any cash.  

Adam decided he was going to Roanoke at 5:30 this morning with Kerri to watch Sophia’s volleyball tournament. I texted Kerri (my sis)  and told her I had no cash, of course she didn’t care. I told Adam that Kerri would take  care of everything today then he puts his hands in his pockets and pulled out $25!! 

DINNER WAS ON GOD with $5 to spare!

With everything that is going on in the world, I felt led to share this story.  What if we all treated each other with kindness?  Without asking for anything in return?  

Something to think about, I guess. 

Life is Still Beautiful 


17 years ago today I made a promise that I would love him forever…This morning, as I do every October 23rd, I thanked God for the 13 years God allowed me to be a wife. 

So today, I celebrate.  

Not my marriage…but my KIDS. 

If it wasn’t for this day 17 years ago, I would have never had been blessed with being Catherine and Adam’s Mommy!!   

Philippians 4:11-13 says I am NOT saying this because I am in need. For I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. 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…..

Sunrise


There is nothing like watching a beautiful sunrise to remind us that we are lucky to be alive – right here, right now. Taking the time to gaze at the horizon while you watch the sun break through the morning sky is truly magnificent. It is a reminder of new beginnings and new opportunities.
It is just too bad that I hardly take the time (or wake up early enough) to make this a morning ritual.  
Think of all of the beautiful things I must have missed in my lifetime. I’m going to start taking more time for moments like this!

no ordinary life

To be continued……..

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Tired of the Rain?

” Seems just like yesterday it rained (or snowed) , it looks like it might rain again today , boy I wish the sun would shine and dry up this rain” Have you ever felt like that, you are just tired of the rain?

If your like me, when it is summer you want it to be cold, when it is winter you want it to be hot. One moment you are tired of rain the next your ready to go swimming just to get wet. Many of us are just never satisfied. I’m guilty of that daily.

In life, there are many storms. Some involve rain, others because of the lack of rain. Sometimes I cause myself problems other times problems just seem to find me. Whatever the case may be everyone  has “problems”.

I’m reminded of a story where Jesus sent his disciples to cross the water. while he stayed on the shore . While they were rowing, a storm came upon them. Of course they panicked like all of us.  Jesus, who was still on the shore, saw them struggling. (Mark 6:48)  They were terrified but Johns (6:20) account says Jesus called to them and said, “Don’t worry. I’m here!” What they didn’t know was Jesus sent them in the storm on purpose, I believe He wanted to teach them and us that not only will we go through storms, sometimes He sends us directly into them just so we will trust him.

As a Mom I’m reminded of how my children act when they are scared. I can imagine my kids grabbing my hand and holding on tightly, it makes me feel good that they trust me and know I will always protect them and never leave them.

God never worries, He is not afraid of the storm, nothing is too big for Him , but He does want us to trust Him. He said he would never leave us. He said he would be with us even until the end. He promised that when we leave this world we would be in his presence. Paul said it like this, ” If God be for us, WHO can be against us?” These are some of His promises and everyday He’s asking us to stand on them.
Jesus is alive, so hold tight, Hold on to the promises of God.

Seasons Change 

  

Every Spring, I am reminded of this beautiful passage of scripture.  

Ecclesiastes 3King James Version (KJV)

3 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:

2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;

3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;

4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;

5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;

6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;

7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;

8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

  

 

Little Brother/Big Sis

When you have two completely opposite children, one “mainstream” the other on the “spectrum”, some days can get rough.  Her brother gets frustrated pretty quickly and lashes out at her.  She is 14, so the drama, well can be pretty dramatic! This is the one thing she loves to do for her brother….she gives him a piggy back ride to the bathroom and fixes his hair for him every morning.    He (reluctantly) does it because he knows that it makes her happy and makes her feel special and like a big sis!!  

I say it all the time….but man, I love these guys!!

‘Tis Grace has brought me safe thus far….

Facebook Memories….you know the thing that pops up every morning that reminds you of your past?   I never deleted my “married” past off of my Facebook.    It is something I just never thought of doing.  So there are days that I wake up and see some pretty awesome memories of when we, at least, looked like a happy family.

Yesterday the memories came across the timeline, and it reminded me of an Anniversary. The 3rd anniversary of the divorce.   The day the judge so coldly and almost angrily told me that the marriage I spent 13 years creating was no longer existent.

Just like that, Over.

This year I felt a bit different as I had the previous 2 years before.   While doing my morning devotions, the song Amazing Grace kept going through my mind.

‘Tis Grace has brought me safe thus far….

Funny, when I first decided to name my blog this, I named it because of….

and Grace will lead me home…

This morning, it hit me.   Grace has brought me safe thus far.     I am so grateful.  For this journey.   For the deserts.  Even for the unanswered prayers.    Sometimes it is hard to see God’s plan for your life, other days he makes it clear.

Anyway, today I was grateful.  For the Memories, Good and Bad.   I am grateful for the years I got to be married.  Grateful for the two blessings he gave me and for the time I get to spend with them.    I am grateful for my faithfulness in the marriage.  I am grateful for the love and respect that I gave him.  I am grateful for Unconditional Love.

So, Thank You Facebook Memories!    Thank you for reminding me of the good days and even in the midst of one of the worst days of my entire life that Grace still leads me home!

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Advice from a tree…

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Winter…Not a big fan.

I have many reasons:

  1. It’s cold
  2. I don’t like to shovel snow
  3. I have dark hardwood floors that capture every footprint…human and animal.
  4. Snow Days (Need I say more?)
  5. The over-consumption of FOOD!!

Ahhhh…..the joys of Motherhood, when you’re only joy in life is sitting in the carpool lane and for a brief moment can take a deep breath and sit in silence.    Yet, for some moms (and sometimes dads) we take that moment and soak in the silence and forget to look up from our cell phones to notice the long carpool line behind you and the gaping hole between you and the car in front of you.  Then the  one frustrated Mom behind you finally honks loudly and you are startled and slightly embarrassed as you put the car in drive and make your drive of shame to pick your kid up from school.    (we’ve all done it, although I have never had the heart to honk.  I know what is like to try to squeeze in the last minute before homework, practices and dinner consumes the rest of your evening!!)

I think we all fall into a rut around this time of year.   A feeling of desperation as we try to tell the kids for the 20th time (in your loud Mommy voice) to:  Take off your shoes! Stop hitting your brother! Tell your sister you are sorry! Where is your-insert sport here-shoes?  We are going to be late!! I forgot your water bottle…Hold on let me see if I can find a bottle of water in the floor of the car!!  (Yes, I do that!)  For the love of all that is Holy, just stop fighting!!!!   Don’t make me call your father!

By the end of the day it is a pleasure to just bury yourself on the couch and eat your feelings.  Be jealous of every one’s life as you scroll through Social Media.  Pray for a free cleaning service.  Then fall asleep around 8:30, wake up at 1am only to realize your son is still on his “date with Destiny” as he likes to call it….better known as Xbox addiction!

Sometimes, I sit at home and have this ongoing pity party for myself as I self loathe over a pint of ice cream and a Romance Novel…dreaming of a man to pine over me as he confesses his deep love for me.  He sweeps me off of my feet and takes me on exotic vacations and the nanny watches the children!    Then I snap back into reality when I catch a whiff of fresh dog poop from the puppy that refuses to potty train!

At this point, I would settle for the two boys that live with me to properly aim while using the bathroom.   (Seems like bathroom issues are a problem with all male species in my house!!)

I realize that I am just like any other Mom out there…overworked, overrun, underappreciated and underpaid.

Just as I was ready to give up and go into parental hibernation for the rest of the winter, my sister and I were headed to pick up my exchange son from soccer practice and I noticed something.  Something absolutely beautiful.   The fog was low and after a day of non stop torrential downpours, the sun slowly crept it’s way through the clouds just at sunset.     It was one of the most beautiful sights I have seen since Autumn and I couldn’t get to the perfect location fast enough to get a picture.    Meaning, my sister was driving and I was yelling at her to drive faster before we missed the perfect lighting.   Someone who doesn’t understand photography, can’t possibly get that there is a slim timeline between the perfect light and Nothing left to photograph.

I jumped out of her moving 4Runner as I ran through the field.  Measuring the width between trees, fog and the sunset.   Feeling more alive than I have felt for a very long time…getting a sense of purpose.   My purpose.   Just for me!!    That perfect timeline, although brief, was just me and Nature.  As God intended.

12654547_10208962979375182_1701704256798487394_n As brief as it was, I was so thankful that God showed me, in the midst of being busy, something beautiful.

Sometimes we all need little reminders that as ugly, dull  or busy as our lives may seem, we can always find some kind of beauty in it.

It has been three years since the divorce…I find my comfort and happiness in the kids, a good book, food and an occasional bubble bath.  But nothing makes me happier when God gives me something beautiful to photograph.

I am chugging down my second Slim Fast and am 4 pounds lighter this week on the scales.   Something about a good sunset to make me realize that I am part of this great big world, so I might as well do my part to make it beautiful.

Advice from a tree:

Stand tall and Proud.  Go out on a limb.  Remember your roots.  Drink plenty of water.  Be content with your natural beauty.   ENJOY THE VIEW!

 

 

Frosted Glass

As I was rushing out the door to get the kids to school, I quickly remembered that I had forgotten to start the car.
I started to complain, then I quickly realized that beauty was surrounding me everywhere.
Amazing what you can see through frosted glass.    Being Late was the best part of my entire day!!

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