09 Sep 2014
in Acceptance, affirmation, Appreciation, Attitudes, Broken spirit, change of attitude, Depression, ephifanies, Gratefulness
Tags: reflection, Young moms
We live in a world of instant gratification. Of fast food drive thrus and microwaves, where the click of a key allows us to pay a bill, buy a birthday present or reconnect with your past, all in a quick minute. We have remote controls to change a channel, turn up or down the volume, and turn off and on lights, we can now, even start our car from inside our house! They even have new techniques where a machine does stomach crunches for you with electric shock rather than good old-fashioned sit ups! So we’ve become entitled creatures of habit and expectation.
I’m sorry but it’s just not that easy. A good old-fashioned sweaty jog around the block a few times is better than some magic pill. I know. I’ve lost and gained and lost and gained the same freaking thirty then forty and now fifty pounds over my lifetime and am heading toward losing again! Hopefully!!!! And have found that it is in the hard work of counting calories and maybe being a little uncomfortably hungry to see the results. Things worth working for take time. And it in the discomfort where we learn the most! I find it so funny when someone asks me how I lost weight when I have in the past, and answered Weight Watchers and seen their disappointment. Everyone wants me to have disovered this magical way of losing so they can get in on the secret. When in fact, there is no secret other than calories in and calories out. Sorry. And if you watch Bambi a thousand times, his mom still dies. :(
I think the same goes for all things in life worth working for. We have to go to school for approximately 12 years in order to graduate. Not all twelve years is pleasant but in the end the accomplishment is worth the work.
I know that when I was a young mom, newly married, with a baby and a full-time job and not much help from my husband in way of child care or helping around the house, I wished that I could fast forward everything to an easier time. And to all the young moms out there, I am here to tell you all that you don’t need to push that button, it happens faster than you ever can imagine! Suddenly, those babies are getting married and having babies of their own. I look back and remember how overwhelming it all was and wonder…. how can I even miss those chaotic days now? Well, I do. At least from time to time. And I wonder… Did I remember to kiss those fat smudged cheeks enough? Did I breathe in the smell of freshly washed baby hair as many times as possible? Or did I just rush through their baths to get some “me time”? I am here to tell you that you WILL get your share of “me time” soon enough. So enjoy being without a moment to call your own, because eventually they will be abundant and you will want to rewind back to the crazy days when you had no help and thought it was too much to handle. Or at least put NOW on pause and someday realize that even though some days are really hard, they will someday be your Good Old Days. I know, I look back and wonder what was really that hard? Don’t get me wrong. I remember the panic and pain I felt, but wow, there were some pretty great times that I missed altogether just being so upset.
I also remember how disappointed in my marriage I was. How selfish my once very attentive and handsome young husband suddenly seemed to become. I mean, we were both working full-time jobs. It seemed as if he checked out as soon as he walked in the door. Popping a can of beer and turning on some game, totally tuning me out. I felt so alone and disillusioned. Hind sight is 20/20. I look back at all the hard times and see where I could have handled them differently, where my reactions could have been more clever. And yeah, if you want to call that game playing, well I wish I’d played more games! I also see why I am so desperate for affrimation now. I wish that my marriage hadn’t ended in divorce the first time around. I wish I could show that I appreciate my much more attentive (somewhat more helpful) :) husband now. At least he keeps my car maintained and fixes my computer issues and loves me like no one else has. I guess I can pick up his dirty clothes and rinse the dishes he leaves in the sink a little more lovingly. :D
I guess my point is, that in that first marriage I was disappointed in, or the diet that seems to be a constant test, or the job where I know that I definitely deserve better, or wherever it is that I need validating in, it is not a fast fix. Things take time, (as for my job… maybe ten years is enough! ) But in the meantime, we need to gather the lessons learned and see that the solution may not happen like an instant breakfast or flicking a remote control, it may take time to really get it right, but it is in the lesson where the magic is! And I guess the magic is…. realizing that every moment is important and it is up to us define every single one!
05 Sep 2014
Originally posted on Gideon & Brisby:
Spoiler Alert: This post may contain too much cuteness.
I have been meaning to post this for some time but these little buggers never want to sit still long enough for me to properly capture all their sweetness. My new green chair was the perfect solution. So how do you make your bunny/kitty/dog/llama as fancy as mine? I will tell you! You will need just a few things.
.glue gun & glue sticks (I usued about 5 small ones for both crowns)
.thick wire (you can get this in your jewelry section at your craft store)
.fabric or dried flowers (I used a mix of different ones from Michael’s but Rachael and I were in Hobby Lobby today and they have a far superior selection, especially when it comes to more life like foliage)
There are so many ways to go…
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05 Aug 2014
Hey my friends….
Just wanted to share my daughter’s blog! She doesn’t post much and so I want to encourage her and share my friends! THANK YOU for letting me share you guys!!!! PLEEEEASE take a moment and go over to drop her a few words of encouragement! And check out her great Etsy shop.
Originally posted on Gideon & Brisby:
Hello all! It has been a long year full all of the wonderful things and go into a year of life. And I am so happy to share this fabulous feature of my You and I brooches in the latest Flow Magazine! I was contacted by one of their freelance editors a few months ago and she requested a some photos to include in their Dutch issue. The magazine is available in several languages all over the world. I didn’t know that they had made the cut until one of my customers in the Netherlands saw my work in her magazine and sent photos one morning via etsy convos. I love my customers ♥ So here is a clip of the page. I don’t speak Dutch but it basically says that you send in photos and I’ll sculpt custom brooches to look like you. I’m currently working on some for someone…
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04 Aug 2014
in Acceptance, aging, Appreciation, Attitudes, Change, change of attitude, ephifanies, greatfulness, happiness, Memories, Perspective, Poetry, reflection, whimsical, Wisdom
Tags: attitude adjustmement, Carpe diem, Learning how to be happy, Poetry, reflection
Sometimes I wander through my mind like rooms inside my past.
Going back to different places that left my life too fast.
Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we could go and find,
all the special places that we’ve left behind?
If at any given moment we could go down memory lane,
and everything we left once, could somehow be the same?
I know exactly where I’d go and who I’d want to see.
I know if I could pick an age, just how old I’d want to be
But I know there’s no such thing as going back again,
to find our yesterdays in places where we’ve been.
I guess in all that I have learned to finally understand,
that being happy is done best, exactly where I am!
27 Jul 2014
in Blog friends, Editing, Friends from Blogging, Goals, My Book, Perseverance, Wordpress friends, Writing my book
Tags: Goals, Writing
She originally started her blog to write the outline of her book. At first, she wasn’t going to share it. She was just going to use it as a place to store the rough draft and some of her ideas.
Not being too technically inclined or really knowing how to set up blogs or sites, it took her the best part of a morning but she finally created what she thought, was a private place where she would be the only reader. Though she still “tagged” each new post as she was prompted to, and for a while, she would just write and publish what she’d written, never imagining anyone else was ever reading it. Until one day she got a LIKE and then the next day another, and still the next day two more.
She thought to herself that she needed to go back into the part of the blog where she set up her profile and make it private because she wasn’t sure she wanted anyone reading such rough and raw ramblings she’d started compiling there. But each time that she’d sign on, she’d be so excited about some new thought she wanted to get down before she lost it, that she kept forgetting about going into the technical side of things to fix the settings.
And then one day she published a poem and got eleven LIKES and four people who’d actually clicked FOLLOW and a few comments. One reader told her that it had made her cry and thanked her for writing it. After that, she was hooked.
Just checking IN!!!! I am on a roll. I have been editing everything and think I have an ending to my book.
“THIS” is an excerpt from my book but it made me think of you guys!
I didn’t want you all to think that I haven’t been thinking about you guys. Also, I have been reading your blogs faithfully but if I am on my phone for some reason, it keeps saying “LOADING” so I can never LIKE things and if I am at work, can’t really take the time to comment like I’d like to. And then when I go home to my laptop, I am writing my book… Soooooo just wanted to stop by and explain and tell you guys I am still here working away and will eventually be back again!
Have a good weekend!
14 Jul 2014
in abusive relationships, asking for feedback, Believing in yourself, Book in progress, Break Through, closure, first loves, healing, Life Journey, lost loves, prologue, synopsis, Writing, Writing my book
I’ve written a few synopsis during my final drafts. I think that this one capsulizes my intentions. I’d love to have your feedback if you have the time. Does it capture your attention? Would it make you want to read more? Any changes you’d care to suggest? I appreciate you guys!
This book is for all the silenced voices out there, trembling under the shadow of someone else’s demons. For those who know how treading lightly and walking on eggshells feels. And how we all become a little confused about love and loyalty to someone else while forgetting to love ourselves most of all.
I remember feeling so conflicted when I thought about the oxygen mask scenario and how we must save ourselves first, before we can save our children. We instinctively want to give them everything to save them first. But the fact is that without us, they would not survive. And so we must save ourselves before we save them. By receiving the oxygen ourselves first. I believe that it’s the same in love. We cannot love someone else without learning to love ourselves first.
This is a story about a young girl who came from a loving home. Who didn’t have a lot of experience with grown up relationships. She was romantic and a maybe little boy crazy. But the intensity of everything that was to come caught her off guard. She began chronicling everything in a “Writing Journal” that started out as a simple English class assignment. Years later, she found the journals again and decided to share the stories with her young daughter, now close to the same age as she was when she wrote in them. And through the sharing of the journals, it inspired her to write her story.
One morning, up in her study, half way into her writing project, she sat down with a mug of coffee to continue writing what she’d begun, as she noticed a friend request pop up on her Face book page and the name she’d never forgotten even three decades later, stared back at her. Little did she know that in the click of a key her life would change forever, in ways she could have never predicted. Accepting the friend request would allow her to confront her own demons that had followed her in every relationship since. It will be the closure that I’ve needed all these years, she reasoned with herself as she clicked ACCEPT.
If you are interested… Below is the book that the above will prologue…
06 Jul 2014
in aging, Appreciation, change of attitude, ephifanies, falling in love again, Gratefulness, growing older, growth, Love, marriage, passion, Poetry, reflection, Relationships, True Love, whimsical
Tags: Marriage, Poetry, relationships
You fall into my heart like a catchy tune
on a slow lazy car washing afternoon.
We fit together more than I realized
you’ve touched my heart like a sweet surprise.
You never really had any doubts about us
and believed all we had would be just enough.
Even when I messed everything up
you hung in there and wouldn’t give up.
Oh yeah, Lord knows we’ve had our go rounds,
when we were anything but on solid ground.
But we’ve learned to give and let go some more
and have come out even better than before!
For falling in love and falling for you
was something I didn’t know that I’d do.
It took me a while to understand God’s plan
That you are the place He had me land.
22 Jun 2014
in Attitudes, believing, change of attitude, ephifanies, God, growth, healing, humility, lessons learned, letting go, Spiritual
Tags: Lessons from my mistakes, My Aha moments, Things that I have learned, Writing ephifanies
As I reflect upon this journey that I am on, certain things have been triggered that I must share. In going back through journals and memories and even in just writing this blog… I really wish I could have grasped all this at a much younger age. It might have saved me a lot of pain along the way if I’d “gotten” this stuff much earlier!
But so far I have learned…
That God probably (most likely – oh okay…. He DOES!!! ) has a plan for all of us and a lot of us miss it by being impatient and forging ahead without HIM a lot of the time. Forgetting to bring HIM along on our journey. Just like the Garden of Eden, when He gave us the gift of life, His plan was perfect. We were the ones that messed that up and thought we needed more. I mean now how did that work out for us? You’d think that we would have gotten the very first lesson He taught us now wouldn’t you? But we are hard headed. At least I am and slow learners and so we have had to deal with the fall out.
God does not see the sin nor pain that hits us the second we breathe our first breath. He only sees the beauty of our potential and His plan. It is our own nature that feels greedy and angry and wanting more. If only we could keep that plan of His in tact. But we live in a fallen world with sin and pain and grief and there has been only ONE human being who has lived it perfectly and that is Jesus. Though, that doesn’t mean that we can’t strive to imitate His life the best that we can. And I think in the end, when all is said and done, that is “The Plan.”
I’ve learned that every day I have the choice to see the glass half full or half empty, to pray and believe in answered prayers or to doubt and give up. I have learned that I can get angry and take my ball and go home or stay and try to be a team player for the sake of the bigger picture. I have learned that not everyone may see my full potential and may pass over me several times in way of promotions or rejection letters, job offers or in my own personal relationships. And that I can consider it all and stay offended and stuck because of it or I can be true to myself and realize that they are the ones losing out and continue to shine and move on. And that God’s plan may be better in the end anyway!
I have learned that not everyone has the same story and to be sensitive to where someone else has comes from, to not judge as quickly but to find out their story and have compassion. I mean didn’t Jesus teach that over and over again? We need to drop those stones and learn the art of loving for once and for all and maybe in the act, we might just learn our own lessons.
I have learned that you have to let things go or you will drive yourself crazy. It takes more energy hating than it ever does just moving on! Whether it is people who you know or strangers that randomly choose you to cut off in traffic, it just is not worth ruining your day over when they have probably forgotten about their own offense shortly after they did it. I am robbing myself of joy by staying mad.
I have learned that it is better to keep your mouth shut than to gossip or to listen to gossip. When someone is talking about everyone else constantly, I pretty much have to accept the fact that they are also probably talking about me as well. And it just feels better to say nothing, rather than worry about my words being repeated.
I have learned that the bad times make you grow and the good times are the rewards for getting through the bad times. That there is always joy in the morning and that every time I have found myself on my knees, I have received a bigger blessing even amidst the pain. Because God’s voice does not return void.
I have learned that every mistake I have ever made, every wrong choice and even my worst sin, can have a redeeming message that I can learn from. And that God is a God of Second Chances.
And finally, I have learned that the lesson is all about trying to bring God’s plan to life for our lives. When we smile at a random stranger or love the unlovable, when we forgive an unforgivable wrong, we are finally “getting” it.
Heaven may seem far away but it is actually very close and we can have it in our life daily if we are constantly on our knees remembering to seek His plan first.
“The LORD will keep you from all harm— he will watch over your life; the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.” -Psalm 121:7-8 Copyright © 1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica
10 Jun 2014
in Empty Nest, Love, Memories, MOM, Parenting, prayer, pride, reflection, Relationships, Reminscing, Son, STRENGTH, surviving, Time, Wisdom, worry
Tags: Empty Nest, Letting Go
This is the time of year…
We are trying not to count the days. We know it is coming up. We are trying to be happy. And yet it is extremely hard. This is bascially a re-share that I posted before my blog was very well known. I thought that I would reshare it as some of you are approaching that time in your life as you watch your babies graduate and wonder where the time has flown off to. It is hard to believe that the boy in this story is going to be 34 tomorrow! I just had to stop today to say….. Happy Birthday Chadly! Your mom loves you!
I remember when my son left home. It was his Senior Year. It was a crazy time for us to move and yet it happened. I remember always shaking my head when I’d hear stories of parents uprooting their kids from their last years of High School and yet we found ourselves in that same position. I was not ready. He was not ready. And yet it is a choice I made and will always look back and wonder about. In the end, he moved in with his dad. I am glad because his dad is gone now and it was a great bonding time for them that my son will always cherish. And yet as a mom who was pretty over protective all of his young life, I had to let go, knowing for the most part, that the supervision would not be identical. In fact, it was pretty non existent. I am pretty sure all curfews flew out the window along with my baby bird!
I remember once my son calling me and telling me that one of his dad’s room mate’s had brought home Jack In The Box for everyone but him. I am sure there was food in the house and he was not going to starve and that there may have been a good reason for leaving him out… mainly his attitude which has always been a bit challenging… Smile… But I can’t imagine his father partaking in the food while our son sat watching. Though I “get” that I was not privy to the full picture. As a mother missing her baby you can imagine my heart. So I began sending care packages.
Sure I could have sent money and saved the shipping, but I found joy in choosing his favorite things and “knowing” he’d be fed. I don’t doubt that my ex was supplying the basic needs but not the hugs from his mom and so I sent those packages pretty regularly. Until I was asked not to.
One day I got a phone call asking me to “stop” (sending the packages) by my ex. He said, “Diane, you are not helping.” I will never forget how hard it was. I understood that my son was actually 18 by that time, had a job and was living rent free so just had to pay for his gas and food. My ex had moved out of his parent’s house his senior year, and I know that he just wanted our son to grow up and learn about life the way he had to. It was a love thing. He wasn’t trying to be mean. But it was hard for him to understand my “mother’s heart” and that the thought of my baby being cold or sad or going hungry for even just one minute was hard for me. Okay well maybe I wasn’t that bad but I did want to confront him about that Jack In The Box incident but I didn’t want to betray my son. And I wanted to tell my son that it was his dad who was making me stop sending the care packages but I could not betray his dad.
It seemed as if everytime I turned around that year, I’d see a little boy that reminded me of my son. I missed him so much. But I knew that he wasn’t that little boy anymore. He was all grown up and I needed to let go.
I guess I actually was glad that his dad taught him the hard lessons that I couldn’t.
I’ve shared this poem before here but it is one that I wrote right before my first baby bird tumbled out of my nest… This one is for all the moms having to let go this year as their baby birds fly off to school or where ever it might be. I understand and feel for you all. And I am here to tell you that you will survive! My son did! He has his own business and a beautiful family. Letting go isn’t always easy, nor is letting our baby birds fall out of the sky sometimes… but if we let them… experience the highs and the lows… someday they will learn to soar and that is enough hope for me. (This poem is also for the young moms who can’t wait for school to start and need a little reminder… of just how FAST it all flies by!)
Seems like only yesterday I held you in my arms
Oh how you swept me away with all your baby charms.
The days just flew by quickly, soon you began to talk
and then a little later, you began to walk….
“Mommy will you cross me? I want to go and play.”
Oh those words ring sweetly, now seem like yesterday.
The years have swiftly passed,
don’t know where they’ve all gone,
And when you cross the street now,
you don’t need to call your mom.
It has happened right in front of me, before my very eyes…
packed away, your faded jeans, one of every size…
Teddy bears and old match box cars,
all packed with loving care,
baseball cards and folded notes of secrets that you shared.
I sit amongst the boxes recalling our memories all alone
and realize that baby, once in my arms,
is now fully grown~
And silently I wonder through a mixture of joy and tears…
Did I truly show how much I loved you
through those tender years?
Sometimes it’s hard when you’re the mom
to make your child understand
just how VERY proud she is when he becomes a man!
(Time flies! The one I wrote this this poem for now has a family of his own!)
07 Jun 2014
in Blog friends, Blog Report, Blogging, Book in progress, Break Through, Critiques, Determination, Diaries, ephifanies, first draft, Friends from Blogging, Invitation, Life Journey, Writing, Writing my book
Tags: faithful readers, Thank you, WordPress, writing journey
I am back! I feel as if I have been away on a long trip! Some of you have come along with me and faithfully stuck it out beside me the whole way and I am forever grateful!
For the others reading this…
I am Sorry that I took a powder for a while. I have been working on a project for my book. Some of you may have gone to my page and searched for Dear Journal Entry #1 and then followed as I have written a draft on here. Kindly offering to edit and read as I write. I have gained a wealth of knowledge from you all as you have offered different suggestions and even told me that you have cried in places! Which I know is the highest form of a compliment! A friend and published author http://dgkayewriter.com/ approached me last year with an idea. She suggested that I take some of the journals that I found and recreate them in my book in place of some of the chapters that I’d already written. Soooo I created another blog: http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/
If you are interested after reading “ABOUT” It is important to know that I started this in November 2013 or to go to :http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/2013/11/14/dear-journal-entry-1/ to begin reading.
I am far from finished but… I’d love to hear your feedback!
There were times that I was signed on under Keri’s name and have wandered around your posts and comments and forgot where I was! I am not done and still have poetry to write on the other blog but for the most part I am back! And will try to get active here again! I have written here and there since I’ve been working on the other project and thank those of you who are still reading “here” but not as much as I would have liked. Anyway…. I Just wanted to explain!
It’s good to be back! I’m gonna go unpack now!
15 May 2014
in Acceptance, Attitudes, Perspective, Renewal, STRENGTH, Survivial
Tags: Healing, self evaluation, Survival
It has been a few weeks since I checked in. I’ve been hanging out over at my other blog http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/
and trying to work on my book. But never want to be away so long that you think that I don’t care about you guys here! I thought I’d come here to touch base and share something that was on my mind…
I work with people who are my kid’s age (funny how that happens, the older we get!) Sometimes it’s just the two of us working. Most days, it’s hopping and there’s not a lot of down time. But on those rare occasions when the phone’s stopped ringing and clients don’t need to be checked in or out or shown here or there, we’ve had some pretty heavy talks. After we lost our business (gift store in the 2003 earthquake read my ABOUT page for more info on that) both my husband and I have had the opportunity to work with the youth in our community. Funny because, my husband actually wanted to be a Youth Pastor in his younger years and worked for about eight years as the General Manager at our small town’s theater before going back into business with his dad doing what he did before we opened the store. During those years, he employed a lot of our community’s youth and was able to counsel several of them over the years and invite them to our church.
The other night I worked with a sweet girl who shared this heartbreaking story with me about her break up with an ex-boyfriend. Which also involved some mean girl antics which all seemed very dramatic. As I listened, my heart-felt for her. Especially since I am writing my story about that time in my own life. Another girl around the same age, also began talking with us and I told them how everything seems so important right now but in about ten years they will look back and have families and different perspectives and priorities and lives and everything that seems so important now will all seem silly someday. They both looked at me with blank looks on their faces and it made me realize that of course I could see from where I was standing but they had not made that journey yet. And so they had no idea what I was talking about.
Do you think perhaps that God might look at us a little like that? Wanting to help us see the BIGGER picture while we are lost in the chaos of our smaller worlds? He knows that we need to take the steps on our journey to be able to look back and see what was important and what really just wasn’t.
As I write my other blog, I have traveled back a few decades. And it has been a bit exhausting. But I know that I have learned one thing. In all the years since I have cried all those tears. I am a survivor.
27 Apr 2014
in aging, Attitudes, Life Journey, Life lessons, Memories, Midlife Crisis, reflection, Self affirmation, Stuck, Time
Tags: Poetry, reflection, self evaluation
The older I grow
the more I don’t know
the faster the days go by.
the minutes don’t last
it make me just stop and sigh.
The laughter and tears
the hopes and the fears
another candle blown out
Inside every minute
the memories in it
Well, In the end
THAT’S what it’s ALL about!
Diane Reed 14
14 Apr 2014
in Appreciation, believing, cinnamon rolls, faith, Spiritual, worship
Tags: Answered prayer, Childlike faith, Gratitude, praising God
I just want to share a silly little story with you. It really happened and I know would happen more if I’d ask more. But with a grateful and rather humored heart, I wanted to share my story with you today. When I was about nine I had a little orange patent leather purse. It had eight dollars in it and back in the late sixties, that was a lot of money for a little fourth grader. I tore the house apart looking for that little purse.
Finally I remembered Mrs. Anderson, my Sunday School Teacher telling us that all we had to do was talk to God when we needed something and He would listen. So I shut my eyes and Prayed believing full well that He’d answer: “Dear Jesus” I prayed… “Pleeeease help me find my purse.” And for some reason I just happened to look out the window as soon as I opened my eyes and there in our car, in the garage ,was my little orange purse sitting right in the rear window of our car.
Okay, so I have lived a few decades since then and I have come to the realization that the answers are’nt always that forthcoming. Or at least the answers that we think we are or aren’t recognizing. But I know God heard my prayer and He was right there when I ran out to retrieve my prized possession and knew my heart as I marveled at just how specifically HE answered my prayer. And on that day, that prayer changed my faith.
In the years that followed. I have prayed for things and it is not always like magic for me. But because of that little orange purse memory, I don’t doubt that HE hears my every word. And that if we ask for specific answers, He is not above giving them. Now, I dont mean to minimize the important prayers, and believe me, I have needed to pray for life and death answers before. But recently I have been pretty out of touch with my walk with God and I needed a reminder that HE is always there, even when I don’t always feel Him. On this particular morning… I’d decided to make cinnaomon rolls for work and my name to fame is the cream cheese icing that goes on top. I buy powdered sugar by the bag and usually have a small stock pile of bags in my cupboard.
This particular morning, I had to be there early and when the cinnamon rolls were finally in the oven. I usually make the icing while the rolls are baking. So I opened my cupboard only to find not even one half of a bag anywhere to be found. I am not sure what the big deal was, and why I was so invested in making them that particular morning. But I pulled everything on every shelf in my cupboard apart and there definitely was absolutely NO powdered sugar in it, anywhere. As I closed the doors I was about to give up and that little orange purse popped into my mind and I almost laughed at myself but I prayed: “Dear Lord pleeease give me just one box of powdered sugar.” Now I told you that I normally buy bags and I don’t remember buying a box. But I opened the cupboard doors one more time and there was one sitting right out in front.
Magic? No way. It was my reminder that God hears EVERY prayer, no matter how small. In fact, I’ve always thought it was a lack of respect to ask for things like parking places or other things that aren’t life and death when HE has much better things to do. But I think God wants us to be in conversation with HIM much more than we are, or at least than I am. And I know that it was that same God who found the importance in answering my prayer almost fifty years ago that took the time on that morning not too long ago, to find a silly box of powdered sugar for me. I truly think I needed a reminder, that I need to talk to God more about even the little things. This was a refresher connection, personally with HIM to remind me what a specific God we love! Because after all, it really never was just about the powdered sugar.
01 Apr 2014
in criticism, growth, healing, honesty, humility, humor, lessons learned, pride, reflection, Relationships, self awareness, self worth, STRENGTH, tolerance, validation, Writing
Tags: Affirmation, It's not always depression, understanding our moods
This has ended up being kind of a series and I promise this will be the last of it. But as I have dug my way back out of my hole I have tried to figure out yet again what brought me there. The kicker this time is that it was nothing in particular. I mean I’ve had much worse times of life and I know things could still be much worse. And I really don’t want my proverbial memory of a metaphoric “I’ll give you somethng to cry about” happen to me. But what the hell is my problem?! Sorry.
And then it dawned on me that everything that led me to my journey down that dark, dreary hole was about me and my crazy imagination. And though the good thing about a crazy imagination is, that it helps a writer write. The bad thing is that it doesn’t help if you still have to find a way to live in the real world (above the hole) I’d like to say that I am not easily offended and that I have a pretty tough skin. And in some ways that is very true. And as I have grown older, I’ve realized that stupid is… as stupid does… and been able to consider the source of most things. But when it comes from someone that I care about, it hurts just a little. Recently a lot. I’d like to think that I’ve grown an even thicker skin but most likely, I have lost a layer and so perhaps become a little more easier to offend.
So the trick is, deciding to just not be offended. Right? Yeah right. But you can be aware. My husband has a saying when someone is a little off: about how they are… “just a bubble off” it is related to the carpenter’s tool that is called a level that is used to measure if something is well, level. How can I not be offended when I am married to someone who guages me with a level? I’m KIDDING now but in the end I guess the answer is… if you can’t learn to laugh at yourself then you might as well jump back in that hole and pull in the dirt!
Thanks everyone for the support! I think that I am going to go fill in that hole now! (With me on the OUTside of it!) ;)
Good sense makes one slow to anger, and it is his glory to overlook an offense.
30 Mar 2014
in Appreciation, Attitudes, Blog friends, Break Through, Broken spirit, change of attitude, Depression, Determination, earthquakes
Tags: attitude adjustmement, Letting Go, reflection, self evaluation, Self improvemnt
First of all I want to say that…. I am so blessed to have you guys! Thank you ALL for your support and prayers! You guys are amazing! I feel that we have a little church or at least a prayer circle right here in our midst!
It’s not all that easy to just break out of that dark hole that I’ve been stuck in and just shake it off as if I’ve just fallen down and skinned my knee. When it is something that hurts from the inside out, it takes a bit more than a bandaid. I remember once when I’d just had my daughter, she was three days old and we’d both come down with chicken pox! My first husband and my son, who was seven at the time, had gone to his baseball game and come home early with a huge black eye! From what I could gather my son had been beamed in the eye and my husband was not happy about it at all! He was the kind of dad that said; “Hey man just shake it off!” Okay so you can imagine how I felt. My poor baby was hurt. And I wasn’t there to comfort him and his father was no help at all! On top of it, I was not feeling too well myself. Later my husband apologized and realized that he’d been embarrassed and made it all about him but I guess my point is… sometimes you just can’t shake stuff off.
We all have our broken times. Our losses, our heartaches and crisis. Some of us are dealing with life and death, some of us are dealing with catastrophic financial issues and debt and then others can look at their own lives and realize that they don’t have it quite as bad but still can’t seem to snap out of it. My grandmother used to say that someone’s hangnail is just as important to them as the other guy’s broken finger is to him. It all depends who is feeling the pain. I guess that makes sense in a selfish kind of way and I guess I’ve been feeling kind of selfish lately. The funny thing about being “selfish” is you don’t really recognize that you are being it until much later. Hind sight is always 20/20.
I remember once going to marriage counseling and having our therapist tell me that I was depressed. I wanted to shout. “Ya think?” I was abused by my first boyfriend, My dad who was my best friend, died from a heart attack too early in life, I had two miscarriages that pretty much did me in. I finally divorced after struggling to keep my marriage alive for my kid’s sake for far too long, I remarried and then we lost our business in an earthquake…. yadda yadda yadda… my husband had to take a job beneath him that required him to work EVERY holiday and then after nine years got laid off and now I am still stuck in my going no where job after almost ten years. After being my own boss for the last twenty years, working for someone else. Depressed? No. Just circumstances.
INSTEAD… I could be thinking…. I was given a second chance with a wonderful Christian man who helped raise another man’s kids and has been a wonderful father to them. I had a chance to have a cute little store that was very successful for a while. And though our store did not survive. It was pretty amazing that WE DID! And I need to remember that everyday!
And by the grace of God we both were given the opportunity to slip into some very good jobs. My husband always wanted to be a youth leader and being General Manager of our local movie theater gave him that opportunity for almost nine years! He was paid very well. His boss was very generous and offered him commissions that many larger city theaters probably don’t offer and so it was nice while it lasted. And just when those doors closed due to the theater’s finances, his boss generously provided him with a severance package which allowed him to go back to work with his dad as God opened that door, just as his dad needed him again for an old job they’d done years ago. Which he may not have been able to do, if he’d still been working at the theater due to the demanding work schedule.
As for my job, it has given me the opportunity to meet some great friends and learn humility! I am learning lessons I may never have learned without the experiences I am having each and every day.
Also…. my daughter just checked in and told me that though she felt the recent 5.2 earthquake in Southern California and it upset her, she is okay! If you have read our story in the link above (right below the photo of our crunched store)… I have to be reminded that I appreciate and need to live for every second of every minute of every hour and looking too far ahead is just too overwhelming…. For God reminds us that THAT really should be Enough! Though… The next few weeks… If I could ask for prayer for health and business stuff for my father in law and their business there is power in prayer and I am a believer in this little prayer group!
Sooo…. Though I am not checking in with some profound life changing aha momentish message…. I am telling you there is light at the top of the hole!!!!!
28 Mar 2014
I can’t seem to escape this place that I’m in.
I’m overwhelmed and the tears begin
I feel trapped in here.
Inside the walls of despair
The sadness floods me like a sob
and i can’t catch my breath.
It is like that feeling you get as a kid,
when you cry for no reason and for everything sad…
all in one good sitting.
I am sad for my pain and for all those I know afflicted.
I am sad for the unfairness of it all,
and for the answers I can’t find,
and for the ignorance I feel inside the years
where wisdom should be.
I am sad for all of my failures and unmet goals
and for the place that I know I should be grateful.
I am sad for the holes I can’t seem to fill.
and for the life passing too quickly before I can make a difference.
I am sad that I am so old and yet I still feel so young.
When am I going to feel like I’ve arrived?
When am I going to GET it?
When am I going to feel Gotten?
When am I ever going to escape this place?
I can’t seem to get out of here…
I am stuck inside my very own tear!
27 Mar 2014
in Acceptance, affirmation, Attitudes, attitudes about your job, bad neighbors, broken heart, Broken spirit, change of attitude, communication, Compassion, Confidence, criticism, Depression, emotional abuse, God, gossip, growth, healing, humility, kindness, patience, Perspective, Relationships, Self affirmation, self awareness, self control, self worth, STRENGTH, Survivial, tolerance
Tags: attitude adjustmement, confidence, self evaluation, Self improvemnt
My daughter has been telling me about this thing called The Rice Experiment. A Scientist took 3 jars of rice and for one month, he said to the first one, “thank you” and to the second one he said “you are an idiot or I hate you.” And the last one was just ignored. Watch the link below to see what happened. It is pretty incredible. The result is that the one that was told “thank you” grew fragrant and flourished while the others grew bacteria etc. The video is only about a minute long and is worth the time you take to watch it.
Lately, I have been in a horrible funk. I have pretty much felt like the other two jars of rice. I am not sure what is going on. I do believe that outside energy does have a lot to do with our lives. The negative people that we give power to, and the power we give away is within our control. I have come to the conclusion that we don’t just have to sit there and allow someone to come along and ruin our day and create fungus in our lives. Too many times I have allowed the negativity of others to take over.
I believe that it is a conscious choice to love ourselves and embrace our positive-ness and all the fragrance that comes with it. We don’t have to wait for someone to come along and spew the expected or unexpected words we have grown accustomed to that catch us off guard and throw us off kilter. We need to find the love. It is there just as much as the hate. They actually sit next to each other all day long. It is up to us who we give the power to.
TODAY I know that I am loved. By God and by me and that is ENOUGH!
26 Mar 2014
in Attitudes, change of attitude, change of heart, Compassion, Depression, frustration, God, Gratefulness, growth, healing, kindness, lessons learned, Love
Tags: A Little Child Shall Lead Them.
I just needed to share this with you guys. It sounds kind of silly now as I try to explain why I was brought to tears by this funny little incident, but maybe it is one of those times where you just had to be there… but I wanted to try because it was such a special moment. Seems that I keep getting reminders from God a lot lately.
I was in a hurry yesterday for no known reason. It was my day off so I’m not sure what was up or why I was so up tight. I was just annoyed at everything. Stuff at work, at home… nothing at all and stuff I was trying to deal with, without going too crazy. I mean something was really bugging me that I couldn’t put my finger on, and even today I’m not sure why I was so impatient. I’d run to the store to pick something up and was trying to get out of the parking lot and get home.
As I waited, I absent mindedly waved a family on in the cross walk, though they actually already stepped out. The parents were in deep conversation and didn’t even acknowledge me but for some reason I glanced at the little boy and saw that he was staring right into my face smiling and without missing a beat, caught my eyes and waved. Nodding to me as he mouthed “thank you” as he walked by. I smiled back and that little old soul who couldn’t have been much older that three and a half, changed my whole perspective and every cell in my soul.
I can’t explain it but it was like connecting with God. As if He slowed me down and gave me a reminder what it really IS all about. My Aha moments usually involve someone homeless or sick but this little boy looked well loved and obviously well raised. But it made me remember how God told us that He’d use the children to be HIS messengers and to lead us. I had to stop and thank God for that little guy who brought a message to me on a day when I needed a reminder that it’s all about love and connecting and being grateful for even the smallest things.
God’s messages don’t need stamps they are sent with smiles!
24 Mar 2014
in Goals, library, passion, reading, Writing
Tags: Childhood memories, Goals, Hope, Inspritaiton, reflection, Writing
I knew at a very young age that I had words and stories locked inside of me. In Elementary school my teachers noticed that I could write. But not until High School did one particular teacher actually take me under her wing and offer me Independent Writing classes. I think that most writers can tell you when they knew they had that light bulb moment when they wrote something special or different that set them apart from the rest of the other kids in the class. Like an artist who paints their first masterpiece or the singer that sings a song that takes someone’s breath away. Or a comedian that makes you laugh until you cry, and the dancer that makes people stop and really watch till the end.
When I was in elementary school I loved to write for me but when I was in college, I put my amature talents to use and totally BS-ed my way through my Sociology class with my essays. I had no idea what I was talking about! But I received this comment on one of my most blatantly ramblings…. “100! If I could give you more, I would! Brilliant!” Okay, now I am coming clean. Like I said….I really, truly had NO idea what I was talking about! I just took the question and re-wrote it a bunch of different ways. But I knew then I could possibly fake it and so I did.
Today, I have a much more humbled outlook. I mean, in fifth grade there aren’t a lot of kids that love to really write. I was a different kind of fish in a small pond that stood out a bit because of just that. But in the bigger world, there are trillions of great writers in a much bigger pond. I am just one of many that likes the same bait.
The world has changed a bit also. When I was assigned to write those reports that we all remember. Remember those STATE reports? Didn’t we all have one assigned to us before we reached Junior High? I’d spend hours at our local library, pulling out drawers filled with information, clinking dimes into a copy machine copying pictures in books for those reports.
Now kids today can find it all on line. It makes me dizzy just how far we have advanced but in the same breath, I am kind of sad that our kids will never experience pulling out a library catalog drawer filled with index cards with information on them. But though their computer knowledge will always far suprass mine, there is still something to walking into a library and smelling the leather bound books with words pressed on pages, and being able to walk to a certain section of the library, finding the shelf, and pulling down an actual book and breathing in the scent of words.
12 Mar 2014
I was writing a new post in my head about this very subject when I stumbled upon a blogger friend’s version of Defining Moments. Those times when we have the opportunity to let a situation define who we are and THAT may be the only time we have to show our character. It is easy to shine when everything is going great but it is those times of inconvenience that is when we have the choice. Teresa’s version of this subject is a wonderful reminder. And check out her blog it is truly filled with treasures♡
Originally posted on Moore to Ponder:
But these are written so that you may believe Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and by believing you may have life in His name. John 20:31 HCSB
Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me. Cast me not away from thy presence; and take not thy holy spirit from me. Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit. Psalm 51:10-12 KJV
And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what is that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God. Romans 12:2 KJV
For it is God which worketh in you both to will and to do of his good pleasure. Philippians 2:13 KJV
I am thinking about moments.
We do like to capture moments; both good and…
View original 333 more words
03 Mar 2014
in Attitudes, faith, God, Gratefulness, hope, patience, Poetry, prayer, reflection, Spiritual
Tags: faith, Poetry
The thing is, that no matter how low you go, the great thing about valleys is that there will always be… Well, not valleys.
I think that my problem is that I have always looked for the mountain top high. My best friend and I were having a conversation today and she shared a little story about how when she was a little girl she remembers when she made a conscious effort to not expect more. It was a sad story (maybe another post) but we ended up laughing, deciding that;
Expecting less out of life may save us from disappointment but it would be sad to go through life only to find that your only joy may be… not being disappointed because you expecteded less.
When I was in my twenties a friend gave a few of us prayer tins as a party favor at a luncheon she threw for our friend’s birthday. Each one had blank cards inside waiting for our prayers. Her only instructions were not to open them until all the blank cards had been filled out and placed in the tin for three years. That little tin was packed away in-between the three year waiting period during a move in a box with journals and other personal books. Life went on and I lived it as a young mother in a struggling marriage. The tin had been filled and forgotten.
Years later I found it again and I sat in my cozy little home, one rainy afternoon as I emptied out the little tin onto the floor and began unfolding dozens of prayer requests that I’d written to my Lord in quiet desperation.
Remembering the time in my life when I’d written them all, believing each time that I inserted a new one that some how it was magically reaching Heaven from my pen to God’s eyes. And you know what I discovered? Every single one had been answered. Maybe not the way that I’d envisioned it but in a way that had been good for me and made my life better.
Oh Little Prayer tin
forgotten in a box
holding all my pleas,
I thought that you were lost
I recall the times when
I fed you every prayer
if ANYONE would care
You hold a special message
I needed to see today
That God answers if you ask
regardless of the way
HE hears our heart felt prayers
and listens to our pleas
whether we are standing
or we are on our knees
He sees the folded prayer requests
folded in a tin
long after we have written them
and sent them up to HIM
HE is at work answering
long after our request
All inside a little tin I found
my faith had passed the test.
Seriously, it is kind of a pretty neat exercise. Keep a prayer journal or start a prayer tin, and then look back a few years later and see how many of your requests were answered. It is really amazing how God really does hear us and how we always are so surprised to see how faithful HE truly is!!!!!
28 Feb 2014
in abusive relationships, affirmation, character, emotional abuse, faith, God, healing, hope, Love, Poetry, reflection, Self affirmation, Soul, Spiritual, STRENGTH, Survivial, trust, validation
Tags: Lamb, poem, Shepherd, Surviving the past
What is failure? Everything about the word stings. I think in the end, it is like everything else, a choice. We look at the glass as half full or half empty. We look at failure as rejection or opportunities to try again. In my life I have recently been on a downhill spiral. I have allowed myself to shut down. My life was interrupted in a way that I could never have predicted at a time in my life when I needed a change. I reacted in a way I never could have imagined and only now am beginning to recover. Trying to understand the notion of who I am. I mean really Who Am I?
Have you ever felt crazy? I am not sure what crazy is. Perhaps it is carrying around a version of someone else inside your body. You function, you exist, you let this thing called a body carry you around and yet you don’t connect with it or anyone around it. You just kind of fake it. I think in a way, that has happened to me twice in my lifetime. The first time I think I was unaware what was happening and the second, well it just blindsided me.
I was raised in a home which had its own issues but for the most part it was a loving and good one. When I started dating, I was pretty innocent. I didn’t have a lot of experience and I got involved in a pretty abusive relationship. A little physically, but most of it was emotionally, and the damage was so great then that it has impacted me all these years later, I have carried the damage with me, trying to deny it. I have struggled with different issues all of my life stemming back to those days. Though, I’d really thought that I was past it all. But something happened recently that made me wonder if I’d been faking everything about who I’d convinced myself that I was.
Where I was reasonable, I was foolish, where I was truthful, I was shady, where I was faithful, I was non-committal. I craved a “soft place to fall” and looked for it in all the wrong places. My final stand was that it was MY TURN and I was going to make me happy “finally”. I started losing weight and taking care of the body that was carrying me around whoever I was. But I was in this fog of instant gratification. And for a while, I can’t deny it. I liked the feeling.
But there is this place in all of us… the part of the “me” that we know that we are. The place that brings tears to our eyes if we stay there too long. Where we feel love and pain and we are REAL and I am not sure if that is where home is or our heart or soul. A place where we still can get healthy and feel good about ourselves for the right reasons. A place that is the keeper of our heart. And for some of us… that place may be hard to find. We may have lost the key but yet… I know that is where God is always waiting. And somehow I always manage to find my way back there. And you know what? He still remembers me. Even though I think that “this time” I may have fallen out of HIS grace. He still remembers and loves me anyway. It is not about being crazy, or failure or guilt. HE is that soft place. When I ask; “Who am I?” He replies You are my lamb.
Still My Lamb
I couldn’t stand the world’s pain
and so I ran away
like the lone lamb from the flock,
I was the one who strayed.
I fell from grace still clinging,
hanging to life’s limb
as the Hand Of Life came down,
the one, that belonged to HIM
He left the nintey nine
to come and set me free
I didn’t understand why
He’d do that just for me
I asked Him “Why My Lord?
You don’t know who I am.”
He said, “Oh my child yes I do,
you are still my lamb.”
20 Feb 2014
in Memories, Mistakes, Perspective, reflection, Relationships, Survivial, tragedies, True Love, Wisdom, Writing my book, young love
Tags: Blog, Jack, Keri, Revelation, Writing
As I have recently taken time to work on my book and go back in my memories to gather information. It has been like therapy for me. And what I have come to realize does not only apply just to young love but to true love…. It has boggled my mind that I have not figured this out until now! After living well into five decades, I am baffled that it has just come to me so clearly during this Valentine’s Day month….and it is this: There are two kinds of love. One is TRUE LOVE and one is… well, it is… just not! And in writing my book and amidst decades of confusion, and a few broken hearts, I think I may have figured it out.
Let me explain… I have been loved two ways in my lifetime (a few times) And there really are not a lot of options other than two. True love is loving someone purely because you love them for who they are. Almost like a parent loves a child. It is an unselfish love. A hard to explain kind of love. A love you because of who you are kind of love. The second kind of love is a selfish kind of love. They do things for you to get something back. They give you gifts, they woo you, they promise you the moon… all for their own gain. Not that true love can’t give you genuine from the heart, unselfish well thought out gifts and promise you things to the moon and take you there too… but it is all in knowing which kind of love you are receiving and that my friends is where the trick comes in!
As you know, our emotions can get in the way and whether we are ten and writing notes or fifteen in the backseat of a car or fifty in the back seat of a car! Some of us just don’t stop and think. Age should provide a guage and for most of us it does, but sometimes our hearts have so many holes in them we just want that FAST fix-it job, trying to fill them up the best way we know how. And sometimes that does not mean with our brains kicked in or with a lot of patience.
I think that God designed love in this amazingly perfect way. He mapped it all out for us and and gave us the best example first. A mother’s love. The problem with that is… some mothers suck at loving. And sadly some even only give their children the second kind of love. They only know how to love selfishly and so they in turn don’t teach their kids how to love correctly and then their kids grow up to love other kids that may have had mothers that sucked at loving them and they find each other in that messed up kind of loving way they have kids and so on and son… and well, we all know how messed up this world is. Even though God Himself has provided some pretty good Mother Love examples.
And if we do it HIS way and wait and get to know WHO we are loving, we could save ourselves a lot of pain. But then who does that? And even if some of us do… it is no guarantee that even if they had the best kind of mother’s love there wasn’t some glitch and they just didn’t get it! Arghhhh!!!!
I guess since this month is coming to a close and I didn’t really get a chance to blog about Valentine’s Day because I was so busy with my project on my other blog: http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/ where I was feeling a little cynical there focusing on a relationship with a selfish kind of love and am coming to terms with a mother in that story that affected a lot of lives. I had to stop here and make a side note of how grateful I am for truly WAKING UP and recognizing TRUE LOVE for what it really is…. It is not what you can get out of it, it is what you can give, it is not how happy you are all the time, it is about how happy you can make the other person…. it may not always doing what you want… it may be bigger… like moving somewhere away from your friends and family for his or her job for a while, or going on a vacation you really didn’t want to go on because they did… or letting them choose the restaurant or movie for a change… or even as simple as watching a differnt TV show and then not keeping tabs about who owes who, because love is not about owing. It is about giving and not needing anything in return!
16 Feb 2014
in Attitudes, Best Friends, Care takers, Church, courage, Divine Appointments, faith, Finding a church, friendship, future, God, Good friends, greatfulness, growing older, healing, illness, Life Journey, Love, Making new friends
Tags: ALS, faith, Friendship, Lou Gherig's Disease, strength
When we were in the process of opening up our store Rose In The Woods This nice man with kind eyes started stopping in pretty regularly just to chat. He began showing up even when there was still paper on the windows and we were still setting up. I remember him peeking in one day, he seemed so interested so I invited him in.
Even though it was pretty much more of a female type store, he said he was sure his wife would love it. I remember him being one of our first customers, buying his wife some little mice figurines.
When he was getting his wallet out he mentioned his hands. I don’t think that at that point, that I would have ever noticed them, if he hadn’t pointed them out but he shared that he had been diagnosed with Lou Gherig’s Disease a few years earlier. He also shared how his wife Michele, was helping to counteract it’s onset by being pro-active with her own research in nutrition and vitamins along with their strong faith in God. We began talking about where he attended church and I remember thinking that I wouldn’t mind going where he went.
He told me that his name was Chris Pickens and I couldn’t explain it then, but as I look back now, I know he was planting seeds. There was just something different about him. It was as if I’d gone to church and been refreshed each time he visited. He would share a little something more about his life and his walk with God everytime we met and I was hooked without even realizing it. Once my husband had been behind the counter at his desk working while I’d been talking. I knew he was trying to get a print order out but I was annoyed that he had not gotten up to meet Chris.
I knew he’d like him. And later told him that next time I wanted him to get up to meet him when he came in if he happened to be sitting at his desk. I also mentioned that if we ever went to church again, I wouldn’t mind going to his. Which I think perked up my husband’s interest because at that point in my life, he was definitely more interested in finding a church than I was, because I was so busy getting the gift side of the store set up. But Chris told me that they had a great youth group at his church and since we both benefited from youth groups growing up, we wanted our daughter to experience it.
I’d met my husband at his church when a friend of mine invited me and my kids to hers when I was going through a divorce. But when we’d moved to our town where we currently lived, we just never got around to finding one. But we’d recently talked about wanting to find a good youth group for our daughter who’d just gone into Junior High. So the next time he came in, I encouraged my husband to get up and meet Chris. It wasn’t that he didn’t want to meet him, it just had never been a good time. They hit it off right away. Just as I thought that they would! And that next Sunday, we all showed up for church and it turned out to be the one that my parents had sent my daughter and her cousin to snow camp from the year before, so she knew some people and felt right at home.
A few weeks later, we were invited to a friend’s 40th surprise birthday party who we’d met at that church and we sat at Chris and Michele’s table and never looked back! We became fast friends. And Chris and my husband became the best of friends and so did Michele and I. They are those kind of friends that you feel you have known forever and through them we met Art and Pam! Two more best of the best! The guys went to Promise Keepers weekends together several times over the years and served together as leaders of the church. Until Michele and Chris moved to Southern California to be closer to family and medical facilities for Chris’s condition and Pam and Art later followed to help care for Chris, I was spoiled by being able to just pick up the phone and know that we could get together on a whim. I have a joke about the friends that I especially let into my heart… they eventually always move away! But I understand. And I am in awe of the friendship that the four of them have and that is why they are all my friends too.
And as I look back at our friendship and how it evolved, it amazes me… that we still question and prod God… begging Him to do this and that… not realizng that HE really DOES have it all planned out… all of these Divine appointments… if like Chris… we just listen and look through those paper windows when HE tells us to!!!!
Now I know that his life is just naturally Chris’s own mission field. He is like a lighthouse in this world. Regardless of his own storms he has always faithfully served His Lord! Some of us may choose to go to third world countries, some may do it from the pulpit and some may do it one seed at a time…touching lives as we go! That goes for all four of my friends that I mentioned here! They have all been on their own mission fields! I love you guys and MISS YOU!
Good Friends!!!!! (Because one listening heart kept peeking through those papered windows!)
Please pray for my friends… for Chris and his healing for Michele and her strength and for Pam and Art as they support Chris and Michele and now for Pam as she has recently learned that cancer has returned yet again. We know God is a God of miracles and that He has answered our prayers before! Please join us as we pray for this wonderful couple. I am a firm believer in this verse:
“Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Again I say to you, if two of you agree on earth about anything they ask, it will be done for them by my Father in heaven. For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I in the midst of them.” (Matthew 18:18-20 RSV)
15 Feb 2014
in Acceptance, affirmation, Appreciation, Believing in yourself, Blog friends, Blog Report, Blogging, change of attitude, Confidence, courage, Critiques, Determination, dreams, ephifanies, Everyone's own story, Frustrated writer, growth, honesty, lessons learned, letting go, Life Journey, Life lessons, My Blog, Perseverance, Perspective, pride, process, Progression, reflection, Relationships, Self affirmation, self awareness, siblings, STRENGTH, Stubborn, Survivial, surviving, tolerance, venting, Wisdom, wordpress, Wordpress friends, Writing
Tags: attitude adjustmement, self evaluation, WordPress, Writing
After my last post on my blog it started a conversation about numbers which I thought was interesting. A lot of us say we don’t care about the numbers and yet we know how many followers we have and though I have noticed that some blogs don’t have the LIKE icon on their blogs, most do. Even in our private lives we seem to keep score to a certain extent. While my daughter and I say” I love you” freely. My son seems to feel the need to ration out his “I love you s” thinking that they will mean more to the receiver if he doesn’t say them at the end of each visit or phone call which is just a natural place for my daughter and I to say it. Well, I can say that they don’t mean more or carry any more weight than my daughter’s ten “I love you s” to his one. But I must admit that I do notice when he says “I love you” because he doesn’t say it as often. Is that what he is aiming for? I think it must annoy my daughter if I am impacted by my son’s rationed out “I love you s” though in the scheme of things… we are the ones that actually are experiencing joy more of the time but I guess it is all perspective.
I think that from the time we are little and our parents put up our refrigerator art or our teachers put our first papers up on the bulletin boards or later, read a story we handed in out loud to the class that they especially found well written…. we feel that affirmation and like it and want more. It can be an A on a paper. A membership in a club. A spot on a team. Even when someone in your family says I love you. We need it all. Can we live without it? Sure. But not without it affecting us.
I remember when my first husband and I were just married. He’d never had a birthday party before. Which I found rather odd because my mother in law was a wonderful woman. But for whatever reason she’d never given birthday parties. It affected him. And I kind of am just realizing it now. Because he sucked at birthdays.
Anyway, I decided to give him a surprise 25th. His sister came over to help. I had been raised to always say I love you as I walked out the door and so I said it when I walked out, and he said it back to me. I think his sister saw the opportunity and said it too. He didn’t say it back. It really hurt her. We talked about it later as we were getting things ready. I just told her that they hadn’t been raised that way and to not let it bother her and that she knew that he loved her. I know he did. (He really loved his niece (her little girl) I’ve always felt that if you love someone’s kid, it is a reflection of your love for them whether you ever say it or not!) Years later before he died, he said he “I love you” all the time. I think it is just a maturity thing.
I think it all starts in the beginning… how ever we start out…. even if our mom says I love you all the time to us… and puts our papers up on the refrigerators, whether we get birthday parties or never have ever had one… we may end up saying I love you everyday or ration them out… we may also end up rationing out our LIKES to only the very special posts…. which are the ones I covet. But I must say that I do care how many followers I generate and what kind of interest my posts attract and I will take a thousand I love YOUS and just the few at a time. I admit it. I want them all. I am a writer. I think that makes me a little different. I think we all need it… bit I am willing to admit it!!! I NEED AFFIRMATION!!!! to me…. It’s really not just a numbers thing. I need need to know that you like me. You really, really like me! And if you are my kids… I will take as many I love YOUs as I can get! ;)
14 Feb 2014
in affirmation, Blog friends, Blogging, Friends from Blogging, Sharing my book, wordpress, Wordpress friends, Writing, Writing my book
Tags: Jack, journaling, Keri, Writing
I think that I am just feeling a wee bit sorry for myself. Even though I promised myself to never care about numbers. I truly never started out caring, honestly I didn’t. I started out writing this blog just for myself. But as wonderful people began stopping by, it got kind of fun meeting everyone, and kind of addicting to see who actually was reading my silly ramblings. I remember when I got twenty readers in one day and my first comment! I was beside myself with joy! So now, I am not sure what I am complaining about. I mean, I am edging towards almost thirty thousand views and a little over twelve hundred followers! And I am not bragging! I can’t believe it! But I think I got spoiled. And maybe I am pouting just a bit. Because this week I only have had 50 visits and I understand that I haven’t posted from this blog for a while because I have been working on my other blog that not everyone has found yet… and I know… Even the best authors are as important as their last best seller.
You know the ones, that their fans spent hours waiting in lines to get autographed, that are now sitting on shelves collecting dust 0r on coffee tables with condensation rings left on them from glasses filled with soda or some sweet old drinks. It just seems to me that if that poor soul is not cracking out one book after another they are just yesterday’s news… and I have to admit that it feels like I am getting a taste of that world before I have even bit into it!
Blogging kind of reminds me of Rainy Day Weather Friends. As long as we are actively cranking out daily posts, we get frequent visits. And a handful of loyal friends remain ever so faithful in your amazingness!!!! (you guys know who you are!!!! And I love you for it) Some even bother to go through other doors of past posts of long ago. I mean I have posted almost 300 posts and some have had as many as 80 LIKES some have never been read at all. It is all a mystery to me what makes someone read something. Is it the title, the tag, the category? It is hard to know. I am just as guilty. I have boundaries and time limits. And favorites. I have blogs that I will delete automatically because they post ten a day and I haven’t bothered to go back and un-follow. And I have blogs that I read every single word they write and can’t wait for their next post!
I have an author friend that I met here that wrote a wonderful book and published it check it out! http://www.amazon.com/D.G.-Kaye/e/B00HE028FO
It is a story about a triumphant young woman who survives the challenges of being raised by a mother with mental illness. She is the kid with the story no one would believe. But who turns out to be the woman with the strength no one can’t admire! I am proud to call her my friend!
Anyway, she is the one who suggested that I attempt to write part of my book in the form of a journal written by Keri, the teenager in my book that I’ve shared on this blog (if you search for chapters here starting with chapter one and so on….)
I have to confess THAT is where I have been! I haven’t invited all of my readers of this blog there because I wanted to really see how that blog would go over. And I have to admit that at first, I saw that I could have played it off… if I didn’t feel like a total creeper! For during the time I am writing that blog… I am Keri again… remembering the pain… mixed in memories and also as a writer, in the fiction of it all as I try to figure out how to weave the story to convey the message that I ultimately want to share. (You guys are welcome to go and check it out. I’d love to hear what you think…) http://kerisjournal.wordpress.com/
Anyway, I guess as I have been hanging out over there… I have lost my momentum here… and felt WELL, okaaay, I seeee how it is… LOL…
But I understand it is like everything… Give and take. Just like a good friend who hasn’t written you for a while. I can’t expect to get a bunch of Valentines without sending them!
But I do love you guys! And didn’t want want to just be a Rainy Day Weather Friend!
Happy Valentines Day!!!!
01 Jan 2014
in Attitudes, CELEBRATE, Change, change of attitude, communication, Compassion, Goals, Gratefulness, growth, kindness, learning, Poetry, prayer, reflection
Tags: God, New Year
Happy New Year!
I must apologize for being away for so long. Rather than writing a
“Gone Fishing” or “On Vacation” post to at least let you know I wasn’t here… I kept thinking I’d be back sooner than I was… and figured that you’d figure out that I was not here all on your own! ;)
I mean, I never even wished you guys Merry Christmas! I really can’t believe that I haven’t been here for almost a month. I never even thought that it was possible for me to stay away this long! Though I have kept up with some of the posts you guys have posted… I really wasn’t that great at doing that either!
But… I am back! And So now… what to say? I have to admit that I almost forgot how to post… it took me a few tries before I found the NEW POST key! Arghh… getting old sucks! You forget those familiar places and how to do things…. This has been my first REAL vacation in over eight years! And it has been nice not having to go to work everyday…. But I did miss my friends there and so I do look forward to seeing them!
Sooo now as I dust off the old keys I wonder… what to write…. besides my first poem of 2014 (at the end) I wanted to make a different kind of comeback for this one post… not just numbering off all of my new year’s resolutions… though I do have em….
To tell you how much I appreciate all of you guys for reading and following me. I truly feel as if I have made some special friends here and have grown to love you all. Rather than write my ususal Happy New Year Post (though I do wish you all an amazing one!) I wanted to come back in a way that reflects what I’ve learned this past year. My mother in law (the Psychologist by profession) just shared with me that we never stop learning. And our new knowledge is like tiny drops of water.
As the master of metaphors I loved that one! And may all of our cups spill over in the coming year!
But as we shared… the one thing that I think stood out more than anything was the gift she gave me when she told me…”You are not crazy Diane.” Okay, so by now you may be saying… “She HAS to say that Diane, she is your mother in law!” But seriously, sometimes I do feel a bit crazy or at least as a writer, I drive myself crazy over thinking stuff.
But I feel that by her saying that to me… a light bulb kind of clicked on, almost as if I have kind of been given permission to feel the way I feel about things. Disappointed, frustrated, sad, confused… all are okay and probably pretty relevant for what happened to make me feel the way I did in the different circumstances that come to mind, and that I am writing about… But I guess in the end, it is how we react to it all. By now we have heard it said in so many amazing ways: … It is not what is happening to us but our attitude in how we handle it.
This year I know now… that being right is not as important as being kind. And that letting things go may be healthier for me in the end than shoving my rights to be right down the other person’s metaphorical throat. I have learned that people surprise you in both good and bad ways.
I have learned that money can make people feel and do things that are despicable and generous all in your own family. And that your own children can disappoint you and make you proud on so many different levels but a parent’s love never changes. At least in my heart I know that to be true. And that babies can take everything negative and turn it all into joy just like magic!
I have learned that listening more than talking will always get you much further on the path of understanding and that being slow to say what you want to say is just about as important as being slow to react to anger. Just as I have learned that saying less is just an overall better choice all around. I have learned that life will throw you all kinds of curve balls but that faith is like a seasoned mit, the leather gets worn in the right places and we learn to catch the foul balls with ease as well as some great home run catches!
I guess in the end, I have learned that I can’t do it alone. That I need to let go and to give God the wheel. For without Him steering it is like sliding on ice.
Happy New Year my friends! May this NEW year be filled with kindness and quiet reflections, home runs and peaceful and meaningful talks filled with more listening and a safe trip through the next year with God’s hands always on the wheel!
Giving Back The Wheel
Lord, thank you for the year behind me and the things that I have learned,
for the lessons you have taught me where my path took a different turn.
Thank you for staying by me, when I forgot to invite you along,
and for loving me during the times where I know that I was wrong.
This year I know is no different, and it is just another day…
But, we somehow all feel as if we can just blot last year away…
An opportunity of fresh starts and a way to begin again,
erasing last years mistakes, like a story that has reached the end.
We turn the calendar’s page and embrace the new hope we all feel
as we metaphorically step aside, and give you back the wheel!
Happy New Year to all of my special friends that find themselves here today! May this be a year of allowing God to steer your path!
04 Dec 2013
in Appreciation, Thank you, Time, True Love, Twenty Year Anniversary Poem, Wisdom
Tags: Anniversary, Poetry, relationship, Romance
What is love?
I mean really, really really love?
It’s feeling the spark when we first said hello
and kissing you good-bye, not wanting to let go
it’s every time you’d call and the feelings I’d feel
it’s all those and more that made our love seem so real
It was dreaming the dreams of what was to come
and making me feel brilliant when I’d say something dumb!
It was the hope that I felt when we both said I DO….
and the million other things that makes our love true…
But It’s also…
the dirty laundry, budgets and bills
and loving me still, without all of the thrills.
Sometimes…. candlelit dinners or just good old Taco Bell
It’s giving me space when I’m giving you hell!
It’s loving my kids and making them yours
It’s all of my baggage that you have endured
It’s twenty years of some pretty big ups and downs
it’s sticking it out and hanging around
Ahhh yes the meaning of love has changed a bit through the years
and for me I know now it’s because you’re still here!
Happy Twentieth My Love!
In Twenty years I have learned this….
“People, even more than things, have to be restored, renewed,
revived, reclaimed, and redeemed; never throw out anyone.”
― Audrey Hepburn
12 Nov 2013
in abusive relationships, Anger, Breaking, coming of age, courage, growth, healing, letting go, Life lessons, lost loves, Poetry
I laugh in the face of your anguish.
My revenge is in your unrest.
You came back to claim my innocence,
your anger, my last test.
You cried for my forgiveness
as you tried to steal my soul,
cleverly claiming ignorance
as you continued to dig the hole.
Planting seeds beneath the surface,
as they grew to strangle me.
You told me you were planting beauty,
when you were only sowing weeds.
Once again… I want to say that this is just for my book! I need poems that go with the stories I am writing. This is NOTHING to do with now… so no worries!
10 Nov 2013
in lessons learned, Perspective, Poetry, reflection, self worth, Wisdom
Tags: Computer Techie stuff, legacy, Making a difference, passwords, Remeberance
I don’t look for you anymore
I think it is so funny and a little metaphorical as I find myself having to click “Remember Me” constantly when signing in onto various places where I belong. Whether it is my Facebook page, my bank account, or even here at wordpress… it seems as if my accounts are never saved, even when I click the button, cyberly telling the “powers out there” to save them. And so several times a week I have to re-insert my password on my personal laptop and phone. It may be a glitch or as my husband likes to point out; “user error” in how I have my settings set. but I thought it was comical. I am offended that my own personal computer can’t remember me!!!!
Sometimes I have felt like an old forgotten teapot on the back burner. But I have come to the conclusion that nobody can fill me up but me. And so I really am challenging myself to see things differently. To create someone that makes a difference instead of staying on that back burner of life!~
I guess my point here is; How do I want to be remembered? As a writer, I hope to make an impact, to inspire, to maybe even change somone’s point of view and mostly to touch their heart and soul. As a parent, I hope to be remembered as a memory maker of special traditions, someone who loved her kids with the kind of love that is unmatchable and gave them roots enough to ground them but wings enough to trust that they will make a difference in their own lives soaring as high as they can. As a wife I would hope that my husband would remember how I showed my love for him rather than all the other things he might recall.
I have a handful of friendships that I have carried with me over a lifetime. I am proud of those friendships because i feel that it shows character when someone invests years in cultivating something that turns into more of a family kind of love. I guess in a way, those friendships, make it less necesarry for me to add new ones to the mix. Sometimes, I am comfortable just being over the fence friends. Caring for someone at a distance. I think that I have been so hurt by people in my past that I fight the feeling of wanting to get too close too fast. And I have since realized that in doing that, I might have missed out on some great friendships. Because after all, I want to be remembered in a way that makes a difference and nothing really worth anything comes without risk! Right?
Will I have made a difference
when you remember me?
When you read my words
will you see things differently?
Will I have helped you look at things
from a different point of view?
Will having had known me
be important to you?
07 Nov 2013
in abusive relationships, affirmation, reflection, Relationships, Self affirmation, self awareness, surviving, tolerance, validation, venting, Wisdom
Tags: emotional abuse, Healing, Letting Go, reflection, regaining our power
I’ve been told that I need a lot of it… “Affirmation” that is. Who knows why? Maybe because I felt silenced when I was younger.
Or maybe just not heard. Now, I bubble my stories out to the world. Doesn’t matter if I have known you for one minute or many years. I’ve finally found a voice and my words help me connect.
Today my poor sweet husband gets much of the wrath that he does not deserve. Sometimes I feel him nudging me under the table. He says he is protecting me from me. I know he just cares, though I can’t help but feel a little offended and reeled in at times. Even though he probably is right. Maybe less is more.
But I feel I’ve been hushed for way too long. The problem is…
I have this story inside of me that I feel needs to be told. A story to empower young girls and perhaps make the men in their lives take a closer look at themselves. When I was younger I was in a very controlling relationship where I plainly just lost “me” for the sake of “him.”
Everytime I excused the way he treated me, I lost a little bit of “myself” in the process.
There is more to the story and my heart is conflicted in telling it, for I feel an odd kind of loaylty in the act of forgiveness that happened years later. I understand more now about my abuser and my heart truly does ache for him. But having acknowledged that, I feel that if just one person is taught something then the pain was not wasted. My message is that NO ONE should be hushed. Everyone’s heart deserves to be heard. I think Aibileen said it best to Mae Mobley in “The Help ” You is strong, you is smart and you is important.” If we were taught that as young girls and didn’t allow anyone to come and challege it, there would be fewer young women in the world allowing the abuse that they experience.
Our opinions may not fit perfectly in the spaces that others want them to…
But we have a right to have them, just as they have a right to have theirs. Somebody needs to wake us up. Perhaps Glinda said it best to Dorothy when she said… “You had the power all along my dear.”
We All Break If We Don’t Bend
When did she leave? That part of me?
“she’d” never have allowed the pain.
I guess she didn’t want to see
the parts that still remained
like painted tea cups upon a shelf
handled with such care
always worrying they were too high
so why’d she put them there?
I know that we all have choices
in the messages we send
I can see it more clearly now…
We all break if we don’t bend.
“Forget what hurt you in the past. But never forget what it
27 Oct 2013
in aging, Attitudes, change of attitude, Depression, ephifanies, Gratefulness, hope, lessons learned, letting go, Poetry, process, Self affirmation, self awareness
Tags: happiness, Poetry, reflection, Sadness
I have had it all wrong. All of these years, I have laid back upon my past resting comfortably on it’s memories. Whether it is longing for it, or blaming it. I have bought into the theory that you can’t help what haunts you. And yet, you “can” choose to embrace TODAY. I have learned that… Tomorrow is the chain reaction to how we each live our todays. When you finally GET that your life will change from the inside out.
Yesterday I chose to embrace NOW. I enjoyed and appreciated who life put in front of me that second. And you know what? I wasn’t miracuously filled with so called joy, but I was less annoyed and simply happy. I realize that I have been stuck in a pretty sad place. People actually noticed that I was different and it made me sit up and take notice…. That people actually noticed that I was different, made me realize how they might have been seeing me before. It is not easy for me to admit that I need to work on places that are so simple and that I have been so stuck, but it is exciting to realize that I have the power to choose how I want to live my life each day.
Over the years, I have accumulated layers of sadness that I can’t deny. My heart has been broken a few times, I have been disappointed and dishonored. But those who dishonored me have done nothing more than i have done to myself by denying my own passion. If you’ve only known me for a while, you probably know I am a writer. Each day, I feel that I am getting closer to connecting with the right people and just perhaps, walking the right paths where opportunities will rise up to greet me.
All I know, is that…
You can blame, or embrace the challenges you face
You can stay in your pain, staying stuck in “that” place
getting lost in the layers you’ve known through the years
as you collect and are the keeper of all of your tears…
Or you can choose to believe that today is God’s gift
and be part of the lesson teaching others how to live
You can rise above all the pain you’ve experienced in your life
as your message sings a song that reaches new heights!
26 Oct 2013
in passion, Writing, Writing my book
Tags: A writer is born, bits from my archives
I have come to the conclusion that in-between being a kid, a wife, a mom, single or married. Working for myself as an artist or a store owner or working for someone else, the one thing that I have always been is a writer. It is what defines me. I have filled books with ideas and half started stories I have written poems and lyrics for songs. I have a million, trillion words inside of me that I want to share.
I have listened and asked questions. I have read a thousand books and I have come to the conclusion that everyone has a story worth telling. We all can learn lessons from each other and so I feel that… we ALL should really be writers. But I “get” that some (well probably most normal people) don’t have the “need” to share their stories. Their words are kept neatly in their brains! Thank you very much!
But I will always write! I have to. It is what I was made to do. I know that I drive people crazy by needing to know details and asking questions. I never really understood myself, why I have such a need “to know” stuff… but I think in the end… I will use everything, every little detail… to write stories that I haven’t even thought up yet!
All of us have different talents and weaknesses, sorrows and joy. We all beat to a different drum and so not everyone feels the same passion in their soul for the same thing another may. Which is a very good thing because not all teachers can design a building and not all Mechanics can assist in open heart surgery. But if that ‘thing’ that I call “magic” wasn’t squelched by life, most of us do have passion for something we want to be when we grow up, no matter how old we are. I truly feel sorry for the kid who doesn’t know what he wants to be when he grows up. I actually, believe that writers are born to be writers… and they know it. AND some even get to get paid for doing it .
Passion is important. It makes you get up in the middle of the night to write what is in your head or else you feel as if you will burst kind of passion.
Sometimes it does kind of get in the way of life, when I have to get up early for a job and I have been writing all night, those ideas don’t always happen at the most convenient of times…. But no matter how inconvenient… I am glad I have it. When I was little, I’d escape my world of pain, by just opening a book. Each page I turned, had me slipping into a world far away from my own problems. Long ago, I knew that I wanted to do that for others. Writing is a gift that can make the whole world go away or bring it straight to our front door through the archives of our memories.
A singer has to sing. An actress has to act, an artist has to create, a dancer has to dance and a doctor has to heal. A carpenter has to build, a comedian has to cause laughter, a swimmer has to swim and a writer has to write! Like a florist in her garden who takes time to smell the flowers, a writer’s words have their own sweet aroma that only her soul can smell.
18 Oct 2013
in abusive relationships, Believing in yourself, Confidence, emotional abuse, fragile, Goodbye, growth, healing, honesty, letting go, Life Journey, Loss, Memories, Perspective, Poetry, Relationships, self worth, STRENGTH, Survivial, Wisdom, young love
Tags: Closing doors, moving on, Poetry
Looking back into the mirror,
a reflection of my past…
The doors I chose to walk through
and the ones I closed too fast…
Messages I never got
and the ones that I received…
the ones I knew were just your lies
and the ones that I believed
all pour through my memory
like rain beating on my heart
years are not the only thing
that have torn my dreams apart.
and made me see the strength in me
as I gather them up with care
and move on to another day
where I won’t find you there
14 Oct 2013
in Poetry, Writing
Tags: Poetry, reflection, Writing
The other day, my good friend Sandy, a great writer herself, sent me a quote on how writing is courageous and how we put our flesh and blood down on paper and what a powerful thing we do, allowing someone in our mind of tangled and beautiful thoughts, in a way saying “here, untangle me.” And it inspired me to write this…
I invite you inside of me,
past the paper and the words,
past the adjectives and nouns,
between the errors and adverbs…
to see the rawest part of
the pain that I feel
the fantasies I wite about
that I wish could be real.
The joy in the
very depth of my soul,
the triumphs and failures
that lead to my goals
you have followed me on every journey
and walked on every path.
You’ve been there through my tears
and know what makes me laugh.
Each word has been a trail,
weaved throughout my written life.
I give you each a part of me
in every word I write.
14 Oct 2013
in Book in progress, Chapter Nine, Critiques, Editing, first draft, Writing my book
This is a revised version of the very last chapter that I published (a while ago) from my book that is still in progress! In honor of those who have taken the time to read and even help with editing. I have tried to take all the suggestions and though I know there may be more to work on… I’d love anyone’s feedback who might take the time to read it. As always… I have mentioned before that if you have not read the first previous chapters (one through eight) you might not follow… but for those who have… Here is Chapter Nine revised. Thank you for your time!
In the weeks that followed, Keri learned to handle her relationship with Jack on her own. It was a balancing act. She thought that she was doing fine. But people began asking her if she was okay. She caught herself snapping back. Keri trusted no one to talk about Jack’s mood swings, Keri carried it all on her own shoulders. Then one day, Mrs. Walker came to her with tears in her eyes. She’d been worried about Keri and actually read her journal, “not all of it, but enough” she confessed. Keri was horrified. She’d always trusted the agreement they’d shared, without so much of a second thought and through the years, she never suspected otherwise and became quite unconcerned and free about what she’d write. If truth be known, her teacher never breached that trust ever before, until she had she’d seen a change in Keri. Keri was coming to class upset more and more often. One day Keri came to drop off an assignment and hadn’t waited to talk to Mrs. Walker who called after her. Keri did not hear her. Or at least acted as if she hadn’t. Mrs. Walker was pretty sure she had.
Keri scrambled inside her head as her teacher stood in front of her with a pitiful look of concern. She tried to recall what she might have written recently. When there’d been no other place to go but inside the pages of her journal. Mrs. Walker laid the leather-bound book in front of her. Tears of anger burned in Keri’s eyes. All this time, Keri had believed that Mrs. Walker was just initialing each new entry without reading a word. Now, she didn’t know what to believe. Keri snatched the book up and held it tightly against her chest. She wondered how far back that Mrs. Walker might have read. Her teacher saw the look of betrayal on Keri’s face and rushed to explain. She’d just been concerned, now, she couldn’t ignore what she’d read. Keri stiffened as Mrs. Walker tried to touch her arm. She pulled away and picked up her books and ran out of the library without a word.
Keri agonized all night long. She couldn’t talk to Jack about this. He would be so angry with her. He did not know about the journals. She’d read poems to him from them, but her journals had been hers. They were not even for Jack to know about. She had not wanted him to ask to read them so she never mentioned them. Her head swam. All of a sudden the room started spinning. Keri grabbed her mouth and ran to the bathroom and got sick. Keri kneeled by the basin coughing and crying. She’d never felt so betrayed. And yet the hardest thing about her anger was that she knew that her teacher really did just care. And yet she was just so ashamed that anyone knew that she’d allowed Jack to treat her the way she’d described in those sacred pages. Now, she felt naked and as if she wanted to run away, far away where no one knew her. That night she decided that she was going to finish High School even earlier than she’d planned. She did not want to have to deal with Mrs. Walker or anyone. She was so confused. During their conversation, Mrs. Walker told Keri she’d always be there for her if she needed her and suggested that perhaps she’d really wanted her to read what she’d written. It just made no sense to Keri and more angry at her teacher.
The next day Keri went to her counselor to find out exactly what credits she still needed. She was happy to discover that she could complete them all by taking the required exams through a few independent study classes that she could do on her own through the counseling office at the local community college. She was surprised how everyone seemed to support her plan. Keri explained that she wanted to finish her Senior year early since her schedule was so minimal. She told everyone that she planned to start working at the Speech and Development School full-time, and have a little time in-between before she had to start her college classes. She decided that rather than going away to school, she would take some of her general education classes at the same community college where the counseling office was that she would be reporting to until she completed her High School credits. Surprisingly, her counselor and her parents didn’t question her new change of plans even though she’d be forfeiting the scholarships she’d applied for. In fact, her mom and dad didn’t seem to discourage or encourage her to go to college. Jack was the only one who really encouraged her to go and yet the idea of going away to school now, seemed less and less appealing to both of them as they fell more deeply in love.
The weeks passed quickly and her own graduation was uneventful. There just wasn’t one. A few months later, after completing all of the requirements. She’d gone to pick up her report card and diploma from the office, only to be told that her official diploma would not be available until after her graduating class had gone through the actual ceremony in June. Suddenly the realization of what she’d done and was missing out on, hit her. Her choices impacted many things she’d been looking forward to. She’d known that she would miss her prom and other school activities the following year, but she’d also reasoned that Jack would not have wanted to go to any of it and she did not want to go without him. And yet, Keri couldn’t help feel a tear slip down her cheek as she headed for the parking lot, with her report card in her hand.
The year before meeting Jack, she’d been invited to a boy’s Grad night who she’d met at church and been dating casually for a few months. He was valedictorian of his class and Keri was honored to be his date. They’d gone to Disneyland after she’d watched him speak to his graduating class and the entire night had been magical. She was glad that she had that memory, and decided it was going to have to be enough. She was just relieved that school was behind her and that Mrs. Walker had not said anything to anyone else about what she’d read in Keri’s journals. Keri was sure she would have called her parents but for some reason she hadn’t, and Keri was grateful.
When Keri ripped open her report card and saw the A+ in English, a melancholy feeling came over her. She walked toward her car as she scanned the paper. Memories flooded her thoughts as she remembered all the things she’d learned about writing from Mrs. Walker. She remembered the first time her teacher approached her with tears in her eyes after reading something that she’d written and telling Keri that she had a gift. Tears blurred Keri’s eyes, just as she was about to bump into Mrs. Walker herself, who looked equally surprised. She’d not seen Keri for several weeks though signed off on her class after learning of her plans to not pursue her current scholarship she’d been disappointed but decided not to interfere. In fact, she decided to do nothing.
Keri had seen the familiar signature and had felt uncomfortable. She hadn’t seen her teacher since that day in the library. Only she and Mrs. Walker knew the truth of why she was really graduating early. “Thanks for the A” Keri said uncomfortably. “You earned it as always, Keri”. Mrs. Walker smiled “Good luck to you honey, you are very talented, I hope you do something great with your writing.” Keri knew that graduating early had ruined her chances for several of the scholarships she was up for, ones that they worked on together. Suddenly they just hugged. Though it wasn’t clear who reached out first. The embrace was long and genuine. “Thanks for everything Mrs Walker” Keri whispered hoarsely and Mrs. Walker hugged her a little tighter and then slowly let go. At that moment, she knew Keri better than any adult in her life. The years of mentoring and long talks about her dreams to write, and then watching her progress and win awards, had been her teacher’s own reward. She wanted to say so many things to Keri at that moment and yet she knew that they were all things she would have to learn on her own.
08 Oct 2013
At the risk of tooting my own horn. And the need for a good affirmation every once in a while. I just had to share this idea that Leah had! For us all to go and thank our commentors! They are the ones that keep us going. I totally am blown away by this recognition! But I thought it was such a stellar idea. As one of her followers said… they’d trade one great comment for 100 LIKEs. It really does make a difference. You never know. At the risk of breaking the 500 word rule which I probably do everytime ;) Here is my sweet friend’s wonderful blog of the day! Oh yeah did I mention it was about me? ;D
Originally posted on Little Miss Wordy:
I imagine it was just a regular day for you as you held your coffee mug and surfed the internet for a quick morning read. Maybe you were running late and after reading some of the blogs you normally follow, you had a few minutes to spare before you absolutely had to be on your way. It is possible you saw my Gravatar on one of those blogs and something compelled you to click on it or maybe you just happened to search through the WordPress Topics regarding 9/11 that day when my newly birthed blog lit up your screen.
Truth be told, my blog didn’t consist of much that would light up a screen back then. I hadn’t a clue what I was doing. I had no idea about the rules of blogging. I didn’t even include an image in the post. I gave no thought…
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07 Oct 2013
in change of attitude, Gratefulness, humility, lessons learned, reflection, Spiritual
Tags: God, Harvest (wine), Vineyard
Today was an amazing day. I got to hang out with great friends in their vineyard and be part of their harvest! They invited us to help pick their grapes and it was an awesome experience.
The group of people that gathered this morning happily worked like a fine oiled machine. We each got a bucket to fill, a glove and pruning shears. And though I missed church (which I have been doing a lot lately, another blog for another time…. ) I kind of had my own service all within my own few rows of grapes.
I am kind of competitive, even with myself. So I had fun seeing how fast I could fill a bucket and how many I could fill. The only thing was that the fuller the bucket got, the further down the row I got and the place to dump the grapes was all the way back up the row.
So after a few dumps, I jokingly made a comment that we needed a bucket dumper who went around and took our filled buckets in exchange for an empty one. Low and behold someone took on that task.
Of course “me” the lover of a good metaphor is not going to let this one pass. So, I started relating the bucket dumper to what God does for us… He provides us with a bountiful harvest and takes the fruits of our labors and lessens our load with His grace. The job of the bucket dumper is not a glorified one.
I’ve always loved it when I get to cook a great meal and someone will come in behind me as I go and wash the dishes.
They are the ones without the glory and yet most appreciated by not only the chef and the winemaker but everyone not having to do that job..
So… whether it is a meal or a bottle of wine, it is not in just the end result but all that goes on behind the scenes. It’s all about the entire process and sometimes, it’s not just about how many buckets that “I” fill but it is more about being grateful for the dish washers and the bucket dumpers that help create the magic!
Sometime it’s not about how full the bucket is, but what’s in the heart of the one who fills it.
Diane Reed ’13
01 Oct 2013
in faith, God, Life Journey, Life lessons, Poetry, Spiritual
Tags: Heaven, soul
The mystery of our souls and the way that they are formed
makes me wander back to a place, long before I was born
I imagine heaven and God preparing me for earth
and how I must have played up there long before my birth
It’s makes me kind of sad that we forget it all so fast
the memory of how we started and why it couldn’t last
It must be in the lessons and the things we’ve yet to know
the ones that we hang on to and the ones that we let go
My soul has always been there, though sometimes I feel it more
through the darkest times and the times it’s been restored
Carrying me through trials and when I felt most alone
floating upon the memory of the promise to return home.
29 Sep 2013
in Depression, growth, healing, hurts, Life Journey, Loss, Poetry, Survivial
Tags: Feeling Lost, Letting Go, Poetry
Even though you are here…
I am alone
I run through my heart
And no one’s home
Even though you are talking
I can’t hear
It’s like I’m driving away
Forgetting to steer
Everything is spinning
I want to feel it
Everyone is so in love
Just want to feel it
It takes everything in me
To not feel it.
22 Sep 2013
in Acceptance, Family, Father, healing, Heroes, humility, Love, Parenting, passion, patience, Poetry, STRENGTH
Tags: Childhood memories, God, Hope, Poetry, relationships, self evaluation
It’s not about muscles that make people think we’re strong,
it’s not about the faults of other’s that makes you the one not wrong,
it’s not about the things we do so that others see them too,
It’s more in our transparency that gives us each a better view.
It’s when I’ve seen the strongest man bend down upon his knees
to wipe the tears from a child’s eyes as he listens to his pleas,
it’s when he stops to hold a stranger’s door even when he’s in a hurry
or calls his wife each time he’s late, knowing that she might be worried.
It’s when he brings her flowers home for really no reason at all,
it’s when he’s kneeling in prayer that makes him seem so tall.
All these things show more strength than any winner of a fight,
for strength is in the example of always trying to do what’s right.
Someday we’ll all look back and see things from a different point of view
we’ll see the things we did and the things we wished we didn’t do,
we’ll wonder why we were stubborn and just couldn’t let things go,
we’ll each learn different things about ourselves we wish that we had known.
We all will someday end up at the same place of awakening
where we each meet our Maker, at a time when our heart is breaking,
where we fall upon our knees, realizing where we did it wrong,
and in that moment of weakness it is then we’ll be most strong.
20 Sep 2013
I woke up to this wonderful post this morning. This is my daughter’s blog. She doesn’t write quite as often as I do so when she does it is a special treat for me! She used to tag along to my art shows and now she has me tagging along to hers! She is a talented actress and moved to Los Angeles over five years ago to pursue her dreams of becoming one. She has finished school, and continues to take classes and has joined SAG which is not a small task in it’self. Her jobs that she works are all acting related but in the mean time she has started “crafting” in a way of sculpting and painting and everytime she creates something new I am blown away. It’s funny, when she was younger, I could tell that she was a talented writer. Once her English teacher even cried when he read something that she wrote. I hoped that her degree would be pursuing writing in someway. Now she is writing screenplays and living her life with a passion that makes me glad that I didn’t hold her back from doing exactly what she was good at… And at the risk of sounding a bit like a BRAG BOOK…. It seems like THAT is just about a little of everything! Please take the time to follow my best friend on her journey as she becomes exactly who she is supposed to be.
Originally posted on Gideon & Brisby:
My grandmother used to sew clothes for us from funny Walmart patterns with wonderfully dated fabrics. I recently found an old pair stuffed in a drawer at my parents’ house and I’ve been wearing them while sculpting and painting. They are oversized with a black on white flower pattern circa 1970s, or so they look. They also flare out like a skirt. But they are so comfy. I’ve had them since I was a kid and my cousin had a matching pair, only then, they went all the way down to our knees. I remember rolling out of bed every weekend around noon, after my grandma would peak her head in the door for the 5th time pleading with Danielle and me to get out of bed, worried that “it’s not healthy.” We’d probably find some fresh baked banana bread or bran muffins (which don’t sound amazing but oh, they…
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16 Sep 2013
in Acceptance, bad neighbors, Compassion, criticism, good neighbors, humor, patience, pride in ownership realtor, Relationships
Today I have a wonderful neighbor. Their backyard is magical. And I appreciate living next to them everyday! I have been blessed with great neighbors in the different places that I have lived. Some have become life long friends. But I do remember once upon a time when my neighbor was horrible. She hated me till the day she died I think. It was sad. I even had dreams of her liking me. It bothered me so much. I’d gotten a notice about BIG Refuse Pick Up Day that our city offered annually. It was a day that you could put big things out and the city would come and haul them away.
I was young and probably not as gracious as I am now :) And looking back, I could have been a little more tactful. But I left a note on my neighbor’s van offering my husband’s help to move her washers and dryers out to the curb if she so chose. I thought that it was an innocently helpful and quite neighborly offer. The appliances had been facing my kitchen door since we’d moved in almost a year earlier. She’d never been particularly friendly even before we moved in, but that note caused WORLD WAR III between us. She was not a very happy person to begin with and later I learned that she had a lot of issues that I was not aware of.
They say hind sight is 20/20 and I think that I understand her position better now. She was probably about my age then, that I am now and I was barely 30. She might have been a little offended because I was so much younger and perhaps she thought… came across as pompous though I really just wanted to make sure she had not missed the notice. Though if we are being honest here… I really did not want to look at her appliances staring back at me for another year, I wish that I’d done nothing now. I don’t like when someone doesn’t like me. But then not everyone liked Jesus. So why should I expect more? But it really wasn’t worth it. And looking back if it had not been that note… it would have been something else. She was just looking for an enemy. There are just some people that I have run into in my life, that I haven’t been able to win over with my irresistable charm, believe it or not! ;)
Though she did have a daughter that ended up being a blessing and we became friends when she found The Lord and we discovered that our birthdays were on the same day. It was a friendship that evolved with a lot more hard work than I am used to when it comes to cultivating friendships; We had kids around the same age and when they did not get along, I think she expected drama between the moms, where I felt it was important for the kids to just work it out. But in the end, a friendship evolved and the kids grew up and got along and it is a sweet memory how I see God worked it all out. And now I am glad that I made the effort.
This morning I’ve been watching a marathon, a show called House Hunters, and one of the episodes was about a couple looking over into the neighboring yard filled with junk and it made me flash on my memories of those neighbors….
Soooo…. I thought I’d write a more lighthearted post today with a little message to remind us all about judgment even when we feel we are on the right side of the fence. Today I am getting ready to work in my yard and it made me wonder what “my neighbors” see on their other side of the fence.
The Other Side Of The Fence
I looked over the fence and what did I see?
A few piles of junk staring right back at me
two washers and three dryers lined up in a row
If they ever worked, I guess we’ll never know
As I peeked through the fence I was so horrified
it looked like a graveyard where someone had died
a few bird cages, an old bike and a barbecue now twisted
all toppled on each other as if they never existed
I tried to smile and I tried to be nice
and tried not to scream when I saw all the mice
I even waved hello when the neighbors came out
to see what it was that I was shouting about
I didn’t want to offend them by gawking some more
even though I’d just purchased the house right next door!
(Sometimes we don’t always see past our own fences)
Lord help me to not be so fast to judge!
“But I say to you who hear, Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you,
Luke 6:27 ESV