6

i want to do Thanksgiving…

Ann Voskamp’s book One Thousand Gifts, amazed me last year.  My sister passed it on to me; she said, “This will change you.”

i read it.

i cried reading it.

i vowed that i would make my journey, a journey of being a person of gratitude.

i read it with my girls.  We all read the book and started noticing ways to thank Him and committed to living lives of noticing and giving thanks.

THEN LIFE HAPPENED.

REALLY, IT SHOULDN’T BE AN EXCUSE..BUT I LET IT.

i started making hurry very important.  i forgot who i was.  i lived my life as the… i am important one.

Then, one day, i caught my breath as one of my girls said,

i was writing down my thanks….the other day...

i didn’t hear the rest because i remembered.

Today i commented on Stacey’s post of 100 thanks, and i remembered.

Looking at Ann’s blog, these words quickened in my heart…

a Personal Revolution of Gratitude turns everything around…

i turn.  i repent.  i give thanks for Jesus. He rescued me.  Amazing love…

Today, i am reminded of an old hymn…heaven came down and glory filled my soul, when at the cross the Savior made me whole, my sins were washed away and the dark has turned to day…heaven came down and glory filled my soul.

PS  Why do we capitalize the word ‘i’ ?  Is it because we are so important?  It used to make me crazy when first graders didn’t remember that rule. Today it makes sense to me. i wonder, i hope that i can get out of the habit.

giving thanks for TWT and my slicing friends today...

giving thanks for TWT and my slicing friends today…

4

there she stands…

oak leafTHERE she stands,

regal and sturdy,

her leaves resplendent,

intact in a yard,

raked, mowed and

buttoned down for the

inclement weather

ahead.

she is aflush in happiness,

no need for botox,

eye springs,

or cellulite salve,

standing strong… breaking the wind,

for those younger plants at her feet,

she will be ready when the frosting

of snow dresses her,

the pruning shears will wait

until spring,

for she is a Proverbs 31 gal,

Regal Oak Leaf Hydrangea,

queen of this season.

There are many things to aspire to as women in Proverbs 31…but this verse is brought to mind today as I write.

When she speaks she has something worthwhile to say,
    and she always says it kindly. (MSG translation)

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10

…lines…

slice buttonFor two precious weeks Pie Anne, Rosy Haired Hummingbird, and Julie Droolie (a better nickname will emerge) were visiting Papa and Mo Mo from Ecuador.  For those who don’t know, I am a Skype grandma for a vast majority of the year.  Rosy, a chip of Pie Anne’s block, blew in, with her family, in a flourish from Ecuador.  We were poised with the big wheel.  The excursions were planned. The neighbors were contacted. Fruit Snacks, Chocolate and Cheetos…we were all set for our wonderful disruptions to the now calm and quiet lives Dave and I are now living.  Rosy had her plans and she was all about sticking to them.

At the park I quickly noticed that she would climb to the top of the ‘rope spider’ without even being asked.  She romped around looking for all the nine year olds to follow; if they couldn’t be found, she’d find a wandering father to pick up or quiz.

On one of the days she found this guy with this thing sticking out of his mouth.  Before I could even figure out what it was she said,

Hey, what is that thing that is smoking in your mouth?

He replied,

It is an electronic cigarette.

Rosy quizzed,

Why?

Annoyed he muttered to my Rosy Hummingbird,

Well, at least it is better than a real cigarette.

I’ll spare you the rest of the conversation.  But early on, in our wonderful two week journey, I noticed something.  She was a bit like someone else I knew very well.  Oh right, now you are probably thinking I’m saying that she would be a line- crosser like her own mama.  You would be only partially right…she is would be very similar also to her ever loving Mo Mo, me.

sam and the line

If someone told me that I had to keep my feet on the carpet, I would inch right up to the edge.  I would look both ways, of course to see if anyone was watching and then quite often, I would step over the line.  Sometimes I might ask , “Why?”, but most of the time I would figure it would probably be more interesting or worthwhile to step over the line.

Sammie, Emily and I, made popular by James Dobson, are known as  ‘strong willed’ children.  We require loving discipline for our ‘crossings’.  We also have repeatedly learned the word, ‘Sorry‘, as we are marching off to the stairs for our time-outs, ten times a day…okay, I know that is maybe an exaggeration.  But last week I overheard Emily talking to Sammie, in her time-out at the foot of the stairs,

Sam, I like that you said ‘sorry’, but you must show me that you obey me.  When you ‘repent’, you must change your behavior.  You are on the stairs, because I love you and I want you to change.

This week at my life-changing Bible study, we studied, about the ‘Refiner’s Fire’.  God disciplines his treasured children if we cross the line.  He disciplines us because he loves us.  It is something I hate hearing, because I have never enjoyed being disciplined.  I do though, desire to be a disciple of Christ and after all, he does call me his daughter. This is my story, this is what I want my life to be about.  This morning I noticed something very odd…how closely related the two words were…discipline….disciple.  Interesting… I never thought of a disciple being disciplined before.

Finally, here’s a picture of my spirited grand-daughter.  I know that someday, she will be fighting for what needs to be righted in our world, but now just squeezing the life out of Julie, gives her intense joy! xo

 Hebrew 12:5-6 And have you completely forgotten this word of encouragement that addresses you as a father addresses his son? It says,

                             “My son, do not make light of the Lord’s discipline,
                              and do not lose heart when he rebukes you,
                                      6 because the Lord disciplines the one he loves,
                               and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.”

...next pic of Juliette will be a smile...I promise!

…next pic of Juliette will be a smile…I promise!

 PS…you know I love them…for those of you who are still in the trenches out there…our school developed a 3 part apology…admitting crossing the line, saying, ‘I’m sorry’, and telling how you will change your behavior.  Hmmm…I think I am still in process quite often in that last step.

 

 

20

…never ending story

It all started as a series.  Can you relate?  Depending on you age you might remember Carolyn Haywood’s books.  The first was probably read aloud in my second grade classroom, B is for Betsy, was a book that I could relate to.  She was an average little girl doing average little things in an average little town with average little friends…some kind, and some not.  She had a little sister named Star (I loved that name).

I never wanted that series to end.

As I grew there were more series, weighty series, like the Lennon Sisters, Trixie Belden and an occasional Nancy Drew (started reading because of her name).  I thought the plots were always too similar, so I quit after 10.  I think I read up to 10 because I always had my best friend Diane, reading alongside of me.  We spend lazy summer days parallel reading and sharing.  We graduated eventually to finding and trying new authors, Victoria Holt and Phyllis Whitney during our ‘gothic romance mystery’ phase.

We never wanted the books to end.

When we challenged each other to Gone with the Wind, our longest book, in High School. It was a pile of paper at 1,037 pages.  Both of us were extremely irritated that Rhett and Scarlet didn’t make it as a couple.  We would have read another 1,037 pages if we could make sure that it would happen.

We didn’t want to stop turning the page.

The title of my ‘new blog’ is where I am these days.  I want to continue to build the story of my life.  I want the end of my teaching life, just to be an end of a chapter and for my life to continue to have meaning and purpose.  This ‘Part 2’ will have references, to the earlier parts of my book, but right now, I am just beginning again…I find myself in discovery mode as I navigate the world of being a parent and grandparent from a distance, tread the swirling dark waters of caring for my aging much-loved parents, deciding how I can substitute teach when …really what the system seems to want is a babysitter for a day or so.  Or the bigger question is… do I even want to be that sitter, never having loved babysitting.  Will my graduate students find me credible, if I’m not in the day-to-day trenches? There are many questions, but there is one question that really has been answered….

God loves me and he wants to walk with me every single day, through my story.  He loves being on the journey with me, and although I will never be perfect on this side of heaven, it is my greatest desire to grow closer and closer to the person who created me.  I want to glorify him in all that I say and do.  I will work out my life and faith in words on this blog.

I hope you will continue to turn the page with me each week. love nanc xo

updated cover, a few years back...

updated cover, a few years back…

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