Thursday, January 26, 2012

Alabama Disaster Relief Blogging Program

If you watch the news or college football at all then you are probably aware that Alabama has had a tough time recovering from the tornadoes that occurred last April. Then last Sunday night/early Monday morning tornadoes struck again with devastating losses. You may be wondering what you could possibly do to help. Monday morning, I was surprised and pleased to see this post telling us exactly what us bloggers could do. If you're a blogger, you probably love blogging and why not use your love to help a worthy cause. For every blog post written about the tornadoes, Top Alarm will donate $25 to the Christian Service Mission in Birmingham. They ask that you write, in a new blog post of at least 400 words, your thoughts on the Alabama tornadoes then go to the Alabama Disaster Relief Blogging Program page and leave a comment showing where you blogged.

Last week seemed like a very long work week for me. The weekend came and I was exhausted. It seems idiotic now to say that I vaguely recalling seeing something on Facebook over the weekend about the weather “getting bad”. I may have mentioned to Dave that I heard that there were going to be some storms. You could make an argument that we were irresponsible because we just tucked Jack in to sleep and then later tucked ourselves in without much thought to the weather.

Sometime early Monday morning, Jack and I woke to the sound of the storms. I remember thinking that the wind sounded awfully strong but I was so very sleepy that all I did was get Jack back to sleep and nodded back off to sleep myself. David slept soundly throughout the night. When we all woke up a little later than usual Monday morning, I told David that the wind sounded awfully strong during the night and asked him to make sure that our trampoline had not been blown over into our neighbor’s yard.

It wasn’t until David and I logged onto our computers that we knew what had happened. Here we were just about 9 months after last April’s tornadoes and many of our neighbors in the Birmingham area were again devastated by staggering losses. At least two people died and people lost their homes. As I drove to Birmingham from our small town just to the south, you could not see the devastation. Even our trampoline was still sitting in our backyard. It was surreal as I listened to the radio and tried to figure out just where the tornadoes had hit.

As I listened, I realized that I knew people who lived in the areas that they were saying were hit. Most of our family members live outside of the areas hit by the tornado but my aunt and a couple of my co-workers live over that way. I started making phone calls truly grateful to hear that they were are all okay.

Then, as in April, I breathed a prayer that God would send the comforter to all those that lost in this tragic tornado. I thanked him for sparing us this time. I wondered if there was a way that I could help. I am truly grateful to be able to help in a small way with this post.

If you're a blogger and you'd like to help please post your own thoughts and share a link here.

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Me Time Take 2

So what is exactly is this "me time" thing? I have heard it's rewarding, it will help me to recharge my batteries and that I NEED this.

Apparently, "me time" must be focused on me...not shopping for my household, not planning for the "strewing" of learning activities for my kiddo, not engaging in household discussions with my husband, not working, not cooking, not cleaning...

I have a child that "senses" when I wake up. I am not kidding you. When I wake up, I sneak quietly to the bathroom so he can get the rest that I know he needs. I am shocked if I can only actually use the bathroom and manage to flush the toilet before I hear him stirring. Yes, I said, "Hear him stirring." I guess maybe it's not only the kid that does the "sensing". I guess we're kind of "in tune" to one another. Anyway, I digress.

The point is that my "me time" is not going to happen by my getting up early to make it happen. When we are both awake during the day, I'm busy with work, facilitating Jack's learning, housekeeping, spending some time with Dave, etc. Every now and then, I grab lunch with a friend when I'm between work appointments but honestly, I feel a little guilty. You can tell me that I shouldn't feel guilty but you can't make me not feel guilty.

I am not kidding you when I tell you I just have so much stuff that I need to do. As a nurse case manager, I am responsible for arranging care for a bunch of people. Since my child is home schooled, I am responsible for providing him with learning opportunities. Since I have been blessed with a lovely home, I am responsible for its upkeep. Since I am a wife, I am responsible for maintaining a relationship with my husband. Since I am a mother, I am responsible for the care and nurturing of a handful of a little boy. Since I have been blessed with a loving family, I am responsible for maintaining a connection with them.

But WAIT....isn't God supposed to be in charge of this show? Will God call me to something and not equip me for it?

Maybe this "me time" that I'm after needs to be time that I spend seeking the Lord and getting encouragement and refreshment from him.

I think I may have answered my own question.

What do you think?

Me time? What exactly is

Me time? What exactly is me time?

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Somewhat of a Testimony--God's Timing

I had a thought while driving this morning....I realized yesterday that some of the pain from Nana's death was related to a loss of a childhood home. During my childhood, Nana herself represented a place of safety and love. When my world was unsafe and uncertain, I knew that Nana was out there loving me and wishing I was with her.

My mother was physically and mentally ill for a large part of her short life. She taught me not to respect Nana or my dad or anyone related to him. Even while I did not afford her the respect she greatly deserved, Nana represented goodness and safety to me. When I thought of "home", I thought of Nana.

I NEEDED to know that Nana loved me even as I was daily (and sometimes many times during the day) told that I was unlovable and that I was not worth loving. Nana took me to church when I was very young and somehow through all the stomping and yelling and red-faced fire and brimstone preaching of Brother Wallace, I learned that God loved me enough to send his own son Jesus to die for me. And I believed it. Without the knowledge of God's great love for me and Nana's love for me, I don't know what would have become of the little girl that wasn't pretty, had no sense, and was "unnatural".

Though I fought the messages of unlovableness, they did manage to take hold. Believing that I was not just naturally lovable, I tried to become whatever the people around me wanted or needed me to be. I thought this is what I needed to do to be lovable. Yet, there is an emptiness and an anxiety in getting this kind of "love." I constantly had the thought that people would figure out that I really was not lovable and actually did not feel lovable as I found myself changing for each group I found myself in. I really did not know who I was. If I didn't know, who else could love me?

It took many, many years for me to slowly but surely believe God's word. He says that I am wonderfully made. He says that he created me for a purpose. In other words, me all by myself without any efforts at changing to please others is worth loving. I AM loved. I have been loved. The one who created me and knows my inmost being LOVES me. It's okay to be me. I am not perfect. I don't have to be. God loves me and he has put people in my life who love me--the me under the surface.

It was only when this message took hold, that I truly felt free to be myself. People didn't run screaming that I was detestable! They loved me! My relationships were true and not couched in fear of discovery of my unworthiness. Not only did I not hide my flaws, I began to put them on display telling others, "See we all make mistakes and isn't it fun to realize how silly we really are!" No one chided me for being terrible. Instead they thanked me for being real and helping them to be real!

Only after all this, only after I had discovered and had grown in a love for myself did God take home my first source of love. My heart aches as I miss her so much yet my heart breaks with the gratefulness I feel that God let me have her here when I so desperately needed her.

So my childhood home is gone and I can never go home again but I am at home within myself now. God is good. God is great. And he has the most excellent plans for me.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

What's Heaven Like?

Since Nana died, I find myself thinking about heaven more than I ever have. I find myself thinking that all those sayings about someone to watch over you are just silly. I reason that Nana is much too busy being awed by the presence of God to even remember me, to even really think of anything except maybe that she (like everyone else) is unworthy to be in God's presence.

But, today, as I felt yet another pain in my heart at the loss of her I had another thought. God loves us so much more than we can fathom. I know how much I love Jack and I know how much it pains me to see him hurt. God loves me infinitely more than that so then is God pained by my sadness? And if God is saddened wouldn't all of heaven be shaken? Yet we are told there are no tears in heaven. Is that biblical or is it just a hymn? I couldn't find a New Testament reference to tears or crying in heaven on my YouVersion Bible. References anyone?
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Wednesday, March 17, 2010

What I Like About the Captain D's That Got My Order All Wrong

Spare me the lectures regarding the health and/or quality of the food. I was hungry. They were there. Demand meets Supply.
I ordered a very uncomplicated three piece fish dinner and large diet coke. The order I was given was country style fish with green beans substituted for the usual sides.
When I pointed out the error, the crew member quickly apologized, took the wrong order back, located my fish dinner, apologized again and laughed at her own foolishness.
Just before she handed me the wrong order she sweetly asked me to call the survey number on my receipt to report my customer satisfaction and even said, "We'd really like it if you could give us all 5's." I assume that 5 must be excellent. You know what? I'm thinking about calling and giving her all 5's wrong order and all. How often is a wrong order such a pleasant experience?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Convos that Make Me Smile

Dave: This soup doesn't seem right. I followed the directions. You know you don't add water anymore?
Me: (picks up can) Honey it is well past time, you so need glasses!
D: What? I followed the directions! (Takes can and holds it out while trying to read the label)
M: (pointing)It says right there "soup + 1 can water"
D: Well, there's another one of your old man stories!

M: You DO love me! (Throwing arms around Dave)
D: (continuing his cleaning) who says I don't?
M: You know, that depressing voice in my head.
D: Wha? That's still talking? I thought I shut that thing up years ago!

MA [little girl in Jack's class]: What's your name?
M: Marie
MA: Marie, I wanted to play at Jack a-doo's [Jack's school nickname] house!
M: Oh?
MA: Does Jack a-doo have a sister?
M: No, sorry, there's no little girls at our house.
MA: Well, I'm gonna need your phone number.
M: (with broad smile) Should I write it down for you?
MA: Yes you better so my mom can call you.

M: Honey why [insert complaint about some silly thing Dave did that makes no sense but irritates me]
D: Hahahah, another silly old man story!

D: Bye, Jack, have a good day at school.
Jack: Hug!
D: Aw (hugs Jack) hug! I love you!
J: I love you!
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