Saturday, August 30, 2014

Where you'll find everyday magic

Today I'm linking up with the lovely Kate Motaung for Five Minute Friday. It's where whoever loves words, silences the inner critic and writes on a prompt for five minutes straight. Not fretting over being perfect. Won't you come on over and join in? Today's prompt is reach.

I’m not at all sure how we all got connected at first. But, about two months ago or so, a new friend on Twitter that had recently connected with me, (I believe through the Brene Brown online e-course), suggested that a group of us, who had done the class, start something called "62 Days of Everyday Magic". 

For the next 62 days, or two months, we would post a pic each day on Twitter of something that we saw in our everyday lives that made us think of everyday magic.

everyday magic sunset and clouds

The idea was to be able to take the time to see the magic all around us each day. 

Special moments. 




It’s been so neat to see what the group has posted each day. 

tea cups, 
spanning vistas in Iceland. 

Such beauty.

everyday magic deck flowers

But, for me, the everyday magic has come from something entirely different that I really didn’t expect from this exercise. 

Oh, I thought it was a great way to start exercising more gratitude in my everyday life. And, that it has done.

What I mean, though, is that I didn’t expect friendships to necessarily form from this 62 days.

But, that’s exactly what has happened.

As we’ve seen each other’s lives in photos and 140 characters a day, and comments on each other posts, friendships have formed. 

Love has been shared. 
Encouragement offered on bad days and good days.

Who would have thought that friendship could reach around the globe though a simple photo and 140 characters a day? 

I have to say this has been one of the biggest of unexpected blessings!

Thanks for stopping by, and may you see the magic in every day!


Thursday, August 28, 2014

When you come in dead last

When they all started talking and getting excited about Fun Day, I started dreading it. It was a day planned in the spring at our city park for a picnic for my whole country school, grades K-8, and other country schools in the area. 

Picnic at the park, food provided. Lovely.

But then, it came time for the "fun" part of the day. We were all transported to the high school track. There were bleachers there for the teachers and parents who wanted to come and watch. And for us students who were either awaiting our turn or watching other runners.

And then, it was time for the running races to begin. 
We weren't given a choice whether we would run in these races or not. 

It was just planned. It was "Fun Day" after all, and aren't running races fun?

Not for this chubby, not-an-athletic-bone-in-her-body girl.

Kindergarteners went first. Groups of eight to ten kids would stand at the starting line and wait for the word "Go!" and then they'd be off!!

I dreaded when my class was up next.

The reason I dreaded Fun Day is because I always came in dead last

Every year, I knew. I would come in dead last.

Each year at Fun Day, I felt shame for coming in dead last.
I don't remember anyone saying anything to me about it, either good or bad. Dead last racers usually aren't recognized. 

Maybe my teacher said, "good job".

But, it was humiliating to come in dead last in the race every year. And, by dead last I mean I was a good ten feet away from the person in front of me. 

If I could go back to my childhood self I'd have a few things to say to this lovely girl. 

I'd say, 

 Your worth isn't based on where you come in in the running race. You are valuable whether you can run fast or not. 

I would make sure she knew that she was brave for getting out there on the starting line in the first place. She was brave for facing her fear of coming in dead 

I would tell her,

I'm so proud of you for showing up, being brave, starting and finishing this race. It's not about winning! It's about showing up and being your brave beautiful self!

This is what I want to tell you today, friend.

In the race of life, if you feel like you always come in dead last, don't let that get to your heart. I want you to know you are brave for showing up. Brave for starting and brave for being your own unique beautiful self! 

Blessings to you today friend,


I'm linking up today with other lovely writers at Coffee for Your Heart and Three Word Wednesday. 

Saturday, August 23, 2014

matched for the occassion

Today I'm linking up with the lovely Kate Motaung for Five Minute Friday. It's where whoever loves words, silences the inner critic and writes on a prompt for five minutes straight. Not fretting over being perfect. Won't you come on over and join in? Today's prompt is change.

I wonder how this happened.

Did Mr.Goldfinch go and change his coat to match his restaurant?

He and his wife have been visiting our sunflowers just outside our back window. I’ve had a front row seat to their dining on seeds and their silly antics in order to get to the seeds.

I had no idea that a goldfinch would literally hang upside down with toes hooked into flower petals to get to the delectable seeds in the center of the sunflower. 

But, just like a circus performer, he hangs there. 



Even when the wind is blowing the tall flower stalk back and forth, back and forth. He stays there.

And, he matches his restaurant with his beautiful coat.

Then along comes a yellow butterfly, flitting about the sunflowers. The yellow of the wings matching perfectly.

And then Mr. Bumblebee. So glad to see him with his black and yellow suit on to match his dining accommodations too.

All this is a front row seat for me. 

They don’t know how much joy I am getting out of this beautiful close up of color coordinated creation.

Black and yellow sunflowers.
Black and yellow goldfinches.
Black and yellow bees.
Black and yellow butterflies.

I wonder if the Creator intended this to be so, that the creatures that would be drawn to a certain place to dine would show up matched to the occasion?

Blessings to you today,


Thursday, August 21, 2014

When your soul wants to run, count things

What do you do when you don’t know what to do? When your soul wants to run, but there’s no place to go?





For me, my instinct is to run. But, to where I don’t know, and usually it isn’t the appropriate thing to run.

That’s what my soul seems programmed to do lately. Run away from what scares me! Run, and don’t look back!

At least this is often how my body reacts.

Mostly it’s false alarms. Usually always.

I’m needing ways to reprogram my soul to stay put. To rest. Stay.
Lately I’ve been grasping at staws.

Oh, I know the old cliché’s.

"This too shall pass."

"This is just a season."

"Years from now you’ll look back on this time and….blah, 

blah, blah."

But, those tired old clichés don’t help now. I’m looking for concrete, practical answers to cope with what I’m going through and not let my weary soul take me someplace I don't want to go.

The fight-or-flight response ultimately takes me nowhere fast.

A couple of nights ago, I tried something different at bedtime. Being a stressful time for me lately, I’ve thought of different ways to calm myself to sleep.

Sounds crazy. Like I need to go back to infant-hood and learn to soothe myself to sleep.
I'm wondering, did I miss something back then?

A couple of nights ago, I laid there with my eyes open groping the dark with my gaze. I was trying hard not to think of those things that cause me fear, dread and anxiety.

I've always heard that it’s easier to focus on something good than to avoid thinking of something bad, so I started thinking good things on purpose. What a novel concept!

I decided to lay there in the dark, with my head on my pillow and count the things I was grateful for that day. I actually held up my finger for #1.

I had everything I needed today

#2 my children
#3 my husband

Whatever good thing popped into my head, I counted it. Pretty soon both my hands were open wide in front of my face. I’d reached ten things.

I started over:

my health
my bed (many people don’t have one)
the ability to brush my teeth (many people don’t have access to this—I don’t think of this often)

Pretty soon my hands were full of grateful things again.
I went through this sequence a third time. And then a fourth. And a fifth.

Pretty soon, I had counted on my fingers in the dark 50 things I was grateful for.

And then I went to sleep with a smile in my soul.
My soul was no longer trying to run away from me.
My soul went to sleep in gratitude.

Thanks for stopping by today, friend! 


Linking up today with Holley Gerth for Coffee for Your Heart and with Beth Stiff for Three Word Wednesday.

Friday, August 15, 2014

What I want to tell you

Today I'm linking up with the lovely Kate Motaung for Five Minute Friday. It's where whoever loves words, silences the inner critic and writes on a prompt for five minutes straight. Not fretting over being perfect. Won't you come on over and join in? Today's prompt is "tell".

He met me at the door of the healing prayer room and said, would you like soaking prayer or verbal prayer?

I said, both. 

So, he led me over to a group of empty chairs and said I could sit anywhere. Then a kind woman asked, “do you mind if I put my hands on your shoulders?” 

Of course I didn’t mind. 

Bring it on, I thought.

I’ve been struggling with anxiety at night for a long time. Missing those all important z’s and just all around not enjoying bedtime at all.

I know that is not what my creator has for me. What he wants for me. I know it was not his design that I go to bed feeling crummy every night from anxiety. 

I sat there with her hands gently on my shoulders, in silence. I bowed my head instinctively and prayed silently myself. 

Lord, I accept your grace in this minute. 

After a few minutes. She removed her hands and the man that led me to those chairs, led me to another person, Bridgett. I was able to pour out my frustration to her of my sleepless nights and I’m afraid I poured out some tears too. She was so empathetic. 

And most of all, she asked if she could hold my hands in hers.

And then she prayed for me.

It was the most beautiful thing.
I've done this thing before. Going to healing prayer.

I can’t even begin to tell you what a blessing it is to have someone else pray over and for you. So comforting.

Such a gift.

I’m telling you, we need each other. We need community.

We need fellowship.

If you are struggling with something, I highly encourage you to seek out someone else to pray for you. You won’t regret it. And you will be incredibly blessed.

Thanks for stopping by today, friend! It brings me such joy that you would take the time!


Saturday, August 9, 2014

When one word inspired a story

Back in the days of my first years driving, I lived on the farm. My step sister and I drove a car into town eight miles to go to 9th grade. Oh, we thought we were hot stuff, driving in 9th grade. We had a school permit, and were only supposed to drive to school. And home. 

Nothing else. 
No where else.

Well, like that happened! 

We bombed Fourth, I know we did. That’s just WHAT YOU DID on Friday night!

I remember one day after school, we were all of a sudden sweating it. We had gone to Dairy Queen. We were parked right there by the building and a semi truck, probably filled with Dairy treats turned the corner sharply and hit the back fender of Herman, our parked car. 

And, we were in it! 

Oh, now we knew we were going to be in some kind of trouble.
It must not have been too bad,
I don’t remember it. 

Herman, however, got a great big dent.

We also thought it was cool because we didn’t have to fill up Herman’s tank of gas in town. Since we lived on a farm my dad had a huge gas tank and beside it a tank for diesel for his tractors.

We’d just drive up in the worn gravel drive way in front of that gas tank and pull down the lever and fill that tank up, not thinking for one minute how much money our dad must have paid to fill it every so often.

We just helped ourselves because we were told to, and because we could.

I wish I could have that liberty today. To just drive up to a big tank of gas that I didn’t pay for and fill my tank with gas.

I do have the liberty of choosing what to fill my day with, my life with.
Here’s to filling it with things that give life.

And to remembering stories triggered by just one word.

Happy weekend friends!


Linking up today with the lovely Kate Motaung, who has just had the Five Minute Friday baton passed to her from the one who began it four years ago, Lisa Jo Baker. Five Minute Friday is a time where people who love words gather and each write for five minutes straight on a single word prompt. No edits or perfection necessary. This week's prompt is "fill". 

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

When your soul tells you "It's time to begin."

It was several years ago now. But, in my spirit I sensed these words.

"It's time to begin."

I knew instinctively what it meant. I had been putting up with unwanted, negative, debilitating emotions, and it was taking a toll on my body.

Be it my spirit or the Spirit, the process of deep soul transformation began. I started the journey with an emotional crisis that forced me to cry out for help. 

Panic attacks and depression hit me like a ton of bricks seemingly out of no where. It seemed like my only and best choice was to begin digging to find out the cause.

It turns out, my soul was actually crying out to my spirit for help and healing.

My soul was telling me to stand up and pay attention.

"Listen to me. Something must change.

The old {emotional} ways you've used to cope your whole life are no longer working.

They've never worked, really. But, until now you haven't known any better.

Consider this your wake up call to yourself.

Consider this your call to action.

Your call to change.

The road up ahead is not going to be easy. But, I promise you, that in the end, it will all be worth it.

You will see. 

In the end, you will see.

And, on this journey of transformation, you will not be alone.

I promise."

Thanks for stopping by, friend! I so appreciate you!!

Has your soul ever given you a wake up call? I'd love to hear in the comments. I can so relate. And, I care!


Linking up today with Coffee for Your Heart and Three Word Wednesday

Random things about this summer {so far}

I usually link this post up with Chatting at the Sky for her Things I've Learned link up at the end of the month, but this time, I am too late for that! I decided to post some random summer stuff anyway, just for kicks. Here goes!

1. On a random night in July, I saw this pink cloud. Never in my life have I seen a cloud/clouds so pink. It took my breath away! I love discovering new colors in clouds!

2.  I bought two flower baskets at Walmart this year. They were half price, basically because they were half dead. I am really a slow poke when it comes to getting spring flowers and the past few years it's been late June or early July. Basically, I'm at the garden center at Walmart when they are practically taking stuff down for the season. The flowers look like they have been picked over one too many times and basically look neglected and pitiful.

However, with these two half dead, pitiful, half price baskets of flowers, I've surprised myself. They aren't perfect, and they could be more luscious, but I've been faithful at watering them (and picking off spent blooms) and they look pretty good, if I do say so myself. And, half price! You can't beat that! 

3. My song of the summer is Michael Jackson's new song (with Justin Timberlake), Love Never Felt So Good. I've been a fan of Michael's since Billy Jean and Can't Stop Till You Get Enough and Thriller were popular, so to have him come out with a fantastic new single (posthumously).....priceless!

4.  Our family (hubby me, our 21 and 24 year old "kids" who are temporarily here) usually watch a movie at night. Not every night, but almost. It usually takes us about twenty minutes to agree on a movie because some of us like sci fi, some like rom coms and some like drama. Last night was Kung Fu Panda. I guess we like animated, too. :)

5.  On July 28th, my hubby and I celebrated our 30th anniversary. Both of us agree that it doesn't seem like it's been that long at all. It seems more like 15 years. Is that weird? Anyway, we feel pretty blessed. 

6. On Saturday, we went on a day trip to the zoo. Just the two of us. Why were we thinking that a Saturday in the summer would not be packed!? It was packed! We waited 25 minutes in a sea of people just to get our tickets. 

Then, I got a case of claustrophobia. We were in the Aquarium building where it's dark and we were in the middle of a pack of people that WAS NOT MOVING. It was insane and I was thinking that some fire code was being broken.

I told my husband I was about to have a panic attack and I think he was too. We turned around and plowed against the flow of people and left through the entrance. I was disappointed not to see the shark tank, but who knows how long we would've been in there? The mob was NOT moving!!

7. For the first time ever in the history of this blog, (which is about two years) I did a four part series. I have participated for two years in The Nester's 31 Days of Blogging, but not any other series. 

I decided to write a month's worth of posts on the topic, How to Have a Settled Spirit. I'm not sure if it helped any of you, but I think it really helped me! I'm feeling a lot more settled lately! (thanking God!)

What random stuff have you learned this summer? I'd love to hear it!

Blessings to you! Thanks for stopping by to read some random stuff!


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