Have you ever had one of THOSE days? If you haven't you surely must not be human. My daughter is on Christian Mingle it would be one of the desires of her heart to find a Godly man that can capture her heart and live happily ever after as we all hope the story goes, and for the most part that is the way the story goes. The reason I bring this up about my daughter is that one of the young men that came up as a possible match made a statement that I won't be able to quote directly but it made such an impression on me that I have been thinking it over for weeks. He mentioned in his profile that he thinks that Christians have a way of putting people off because they try to act as though they have everything together. He said something about not having everything together in his life but having everything cleansed because he has a Savior. I think this young" twenty something" has labeled this very well. Or as my husband has quoted you don't clean your fish before you haul them into the boat why do Christians act as though people should have everything cleaned up before they enter into a church? Let alone why should we act like we expect this behavior from someone who hasn't even had the chance to know Christ? If this is the impression we are giving as Christians, man am I ever sorry for this and I know a Savior that must weep over such an arrogant attitude!
My thoughts are back to have you ever had one of those days? You know the kids are sick and you can't fix it. The car has something seriously wrong with it and for the life of you the ability to pay for the repair costs isn't to be found. You have been on the wrong end of the down sizing that the corporation you are employed at needs to take to keep it solvent. Your marriage is falling apart and every time you walk into your front door at the end of the day your intent is to tell your loved one how sorry you are that it has come to this, but something he or she says as soon as you walk in that door really ticks you off and it is another night of arguments and crushed feelings. You have just found out that your unmarried teenage daughter is pregnant and your heart is broken as you wonder how will this little girl who is yet a child raise a child? Your loved one is serving their Country in a land so far from home and tonight all you really want is to crawl under the covers and be able to hold them close. The flood waters are truly rising around you. You have sandbagged with your community. You have tried to assess what is most important in your home to take out just in case all of your sandbagging collapses and the water comes pouring in. How do you take a life of memories and try to save something from it? Have you ever had one of those days? Your life can be a mess, it can be one of those days, or weeks, or months I think we have all had them. And I truly thank God, he doesn't expect us to clean it all up, straighten everything out, and be polite before we can approach him. He will listen to us, love us, hold us close even if our life has been messy, stinky, depressed, and broken. Can I introduce you to the Savior of my messy life?
"The Lord always keeps his promises; he is gracious in all he does. The Lord helps the fallen and lifts those bent beneath their loads. The eyes of all look to you in hope; you give them their food as they need it. When you open your hand, you satisfy the hunger and thirst of every living thing. The Lord is righteous in everything he does; he is filled with kindness. The Lord is close to all who call on him, yes, to all who call on him in truth. He grants the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cries for help and rescues them. The Lord protects all those who love him, but he destroys the wicked. I will praise the Lord, and may everyone on earth bless his holy name forever and ever." Psalm 145:13-21
I've found that since I have been making jewelry that I am crazy about pearls. I don't really know exactly why, but here are a few reasons. They seem pure, they are organic, something from nature the beautiful sheen, the value that they have had for generations. I don't work with really expensive, impressive pearls. But little beauties they are! Here are a few pics of what I have been up to lately. I have a wedding theme or collection going in my head when I am making these. I know they could be used for any occasion but I just think it would be very sweet for brides to give as gifts to their bridesmaids to be worn at the wedding. Each one is similar to the other yet they have subtle differences to give them a little personality.
Yesterday it rained buckets...pails...cats...we already had dogs. Anyway it RAINED! From watching the weather channel it looks like most of the United States is having crazy weather. It looked like March doldrums yesterday. Then in the early morning hours it started to snow. When we looked outside today all of the muddy brown depressing goo was gone transformed into a beautiful canopy of white snow. I know most people probably aren't too happy about snow when they are looking forward to Spring, but somehow it was a relief today. We are still watching for the flooding to happen and we are so thankful that we are safe but I think the idea of flooding and mud and people possibly losing their homes just seemed to be put on pause for a short spell today as we looked out at the wonder. I always think of the Bible verse, He washed me whiter than snow when I look out at that cleaned up landscape with sparkling diamonds. Whiter than snow...man that is one cleaned up heart! And only God would be able to make such a transformation.
My thoughts feel scrambled today. It is cloudy here and very gloomy. Thankfully, the snow and rain that is in the forecast has not shown up yet. The city siren went off at 10:00 a.m. today and Steve headed to help sandbag. Our city, Grand Forks, ND and Fargo, ND are trying to prepare for flooding. Our home is not in danger. The Fargo and Grand Forks cities were clobbered in 1997. I just can't think of much today other than what if it were my home? What would I be doing now in preparation? What would you grab from the house and move to higher ground? I'm praying a lot! I have been so impressed to watch the communities as they pull together to try to help one another. They have closed several area Universities and these young students are out there working so hard to fill and pile up sand bags. It is so wonderful to see their spirit, their passion, their desire to make a difference. My ears are closed to those who knock youth. Our world is in good hands by most of the examples I have seen of those in the 16-30 age range. One life can make a difference! We may not be able to hold back flood waters, but to watch courage, integrity, leadership and community spirit demonstrated as people jump into that line sand bagging and working side by side is truly a sign of what is good in this world!
I'm sitting here all decked out in green today. I remember this holiday being such a fun one when I was in grade school. I tried to make it an exciting day for our children when they were young but I think they just about threw their mother out when they came home for dinner to green pancakes and green food coloring in their milk. I'm just not sure if my oldest child has been able to shake that one off yet. There was just no convincing him that it didn't taste different. He just couldn't look at the green milk without a little gag kickoff. Then we discovered that corned beef and cabbage was the best! A little slow on picking that up I know! It's not like that couldn't have been discovered sooner. Enjoy the day and enjoy making your own family memories and traditions. They are the things that stay with you and bring a smile to your Irish eyes for all the years later as you recall them.
Dad called today to tell me that he saw the first Robin today. In fact he told me that there were several. So there really is hope that Spring will indeed arrive and in fact if the Robin is an indicator, it has already made its presence known in Southern Illinois. Now just fly North birdie. Far North! I've heard there is a nice house that has bird seed in the feeders just waiting for you. Just a little bribery on my part. You just never know when a Robin might be checking out your Blog.
On my work or play front I made these blue earrings yesterday. Aren't they just the best color?
Happy Spring thoughts to all who are stopping by my blog today!
My dear husband had to shovel for three hours just to get out of our driveway this morning. So I decided to add some more snow photos to show the results of yesterdays blizzard. Hey when you live in Northern Minnesota a stones throw from Canada that is what you do! Shovel and update on blizzards. Too bad that Wednesdays are the longest work days for Steve as I am sure that his muscles are screaming by now. Extra back rubs for him tonight. I'm not sure that these photos will tell you how truly deep these drifts are. I think we should have put a tiny person next to the really big drift but I didn't think of volunteering for before my daughter shot the photos. Though if you will look at the basketball hoop in the picture on the right....well you will get the idea. So enjoy! Stay warm! And if you are living where it is Sunny, Warm, and flowers are blooming, man are you lucky!
The temperature today is 1 degree. I'm not kidding! A blizzard is taking place right at this moment. Good things about blizzards:1. My sweetheart is home today because everything is closed. 2. I love snow. 3. I'm inside 4.The power is still on. Yeah, I guess that is about it. Only a top four moment here.
So as much as I am not complaining. REALLY! My work with my jewelry creations took me to sunny California today. It seemed to be a really good idea while enjoying a hot cup of coffee and watching snow whip by my window at a bazzillion miles an hour to think warm thoughts. I'll put a little picture in to show you what I listed today.
When we visited Dane, Julia, Ethan and Connor in SUNNY California. We stayed in a lovely home given to us by the generosity of our son and daughter in loves friends. In the fenced in back yard there was a sand box. I took my cup of coffee out with me to enjoy the sun one morning and to my delight I found the sand box was home to a very sweet sociable turtle. I did have a wonderful photo of him, that is before my computer crashed. I guess that's another story though. I'm still muttering about the photos. Back to the turtle...I found tiny turtles at an Etsy shop. I just had to purchase them and find a way to make them into earrings. This is the result of that project.
Now about the photo muttering, I still need to find a back up system. And we received the best thing in our mail yesterday. Our daughter Deanna notified her sibs that we had lost our photos and asked them if they could send copies of theirs. Yesterday the mailbox had a CD of photos from Kelsi and Dirk. A GIANT Thank you!
Delightful encounters with a three and a half year old's world. My son called me a few weeks ago, so that he could put my grandson on the phone to tell me what he had slept with the night before. It was one of those times when grandmas need better ears as I could not for the life of me understand what he had said. With my son back on the phone to translate, he told me that Ethan's teddy bear had been tossed aside so that he could sleep with his new cool blue SNAKE. Wait did I just shout that? It's maybe a good thing that I could not understand my grandson. Even though it might have been very funny for him, it might also be an unwise time to share my phobias SNAKES taking the number one spot, with public speaking almost making a close tie for first place. Funny little boys what is the deal with them liking wiggly, snakes?
I just want to give a shout out to my Dad today. Happy Birthday Dad. It is his 81st birthday today. I guess with men it is alright to say their age out loud. So hey Dad Happy Birthday! Let me tell you a little about this man who I love so dearly. He and my mother were married when they were both kids at the ages of 17 and 18. Then it wasn't too long until they were kids raising kids. Any of you with young families know exactly how that goes. Rent or mortgage payments, grocery bills, doctor bills, little sleep and never feeling like you can stretch far enough or be in enough places to take care of everyone and everything. As we turn on the nightly news and hear of job layoffs and a poor economic times they aren't telling this generation of 80 plus anything new. They lived it, pulled themselves up from it, worked so hard, saved what they could, tried to put their kids through school, or at least keep them in a new pair of shoes when they were growing like out of control weeds. There wasn't instant gratification for this generation. It was hard earned and grown over a long period of time. So much wisdom we could learn from them.
I want to share with you one of my dearest memories of my Father. Everyday after working in a factory that we lived close to. He walked to and from work. At the end of each work day my brothers and I would wait for the time of day when dad punched out at work and started walking home. From our home window or yard we could see as he turned the corner and we would race to meet him. My dad whistles happy, sad, busy, whatever he whistles. As we would run toward him you could start to hear the whistle. As we reached him he would pick us up put us on his shoulders and we would ride the rest of the way home perched on the best spot in town. Listening to the contented whistle. Thankfully my siblings and I are spaced several years apart in age. So each of us had our turn in who was able to ride home on dad's shoulders. Yeah, that's what life is all about. Good memories of a loving Father who meets us in the most simple moments of our day.
So many things to write about today! First a word about my remarkable grandson who has found his toes and is happily sticking them in his mouth and learning to coo! This would be my four month old grandson not the almost four year old one. Funny how playing with your feet is just so adorable when you are four months old.
Then I was emailing a friend on the East Coast who was hit by the Winter Storm this week and asking her if she still had snow. I told her it was actually melting where we live. To which she replied that I was bragging. Pretty funny huh? So I thought I would include a few photos of what melting in Northwestern Minnesota looks like. Don't ya know?
Then I want to add a photo of my work today that I put in my Etsy shop. With all of these snow photos I decided that a little Spring green would be a joyful sight.
Buttons has his new home! Actually, he has been in his new home for almost a month. I guess I need to update blogs more often. Although, this week I have been pretty good about this. I just want to tell how my timing isn't always the best. A bit, well maybe a lot of fretting went into finding a home for Buttons. Then the perfect home became available with Hannah and her brothers:) They attend church with us. Hannah a delightful, full of energy little girl went to her class the day after finding out that Buttons was coming to live at her house and announced to her teachers that she was getting a service dog, who would be coming to school with her. Hannah is a girl with Cerebral Palsy who zips around in her wheelchair with an amazing zest for life! The teacher's were perplexed upon this announcement and questioned Hannah's mom who informed them that they were getting a companion dog. Which just might be able to attend class just to visit when he is settled in. Well a Collie will absolutely enjoy meeting Hannah's class. And who can blame a girl for trying to bring her new best friend to school with her?
I can't help but think that my Mom is smiling in Heaven today. I woke up singing one of her favorite laundry day songs. God is healing me giving me days with much less pain, and I am joyfully singing! Only, sorry Mom my version sounds a little froggier than yours! She used to belt out hymns while she did her housework and mostly when she was in the basement doing laundry. Some people sing in the shower. Some people sing and dance in their cars. Mom sang in the laundry room. I think that it all stems from the same theory though. Somehow, showers and cars must make people think they are invisible, I can't see them, they can't see me. Well, hopefully, that theory is true for the shower. YEWWW! So as they are bopping around in their cars singing at the top of their lungs (come on, I've been there and I bet you have too) thinking that nobody can see them. Mom belted from the basement and she had a beautiful voice. So this one is for you Mom...Blessed Assurance, Jesus Is Mine! It's ok sing along if you would like, no one can see you as you sit in front of your computer. And surely that means that they won't hear you in the next room. REALLY!
I have learned how to add photos of what I have been working on lately. Newbie at this. I love making jewelry and call it my work but really it is like going to play each time I make something. Isn't that what we are told that we should do something we love? Well, I do feel very blessed by this and wanted to share with you what I have been up to. With the past few days at -17 below I have been working with a lot of pastels maybe if I think Spring it will bring Spring. Hmmm...sounds good.
I'm a daughter, sister, wife, and mother of three, also a mother- in- "love" to two lovely young women, and grandmother. And I am excited to announce a new son-in-"love". We just celebrated our daughters wedding! I love to write. I dearly love God and am amazed that I can barely understand how much he truly loves me. I hope to be a compassionate person that tries to be a help to others. I have many health difficulties, such as Fibromyalgia, Arnold Chiari Malformation (which I have had surgery to decompress the malformation) and Sjogren's. I want to be known as a person who loves others, who tries to be kind, who has a deep faith in God, who is just so totally in love with my family, and did I mention my beautiful grandsons? I want to be more than a label of chronic illnesses, but even though that is a difficult part of my life, I also want to be a listening ear, or empathetic heart, to others who suffer from these same difficulties. Well, that pretty much sums up me!