Wednesday, January 22, 2014


"Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and
certain of what we do not see."
Hebrews 11:1

     I have always believed in God, always known that He is real.  I had an experience as a child (maybe fourth grade or so) where I know that He was watching over me in a very real way.  Since that time, I have never doubted Him or His love for me.  I have strayed from Him, but through all that I have done, good and bad, He has loved me.  

     I sometimes feel that my faith is pretty simple, that I don't have more depth because I have never gone through a period of doubt in my life.  But this verse makes me feel so much, sure of what I hope for, certain of what I do not see.  I am not very good at explaining my faith, because for me, it just is.  I have always felt His presence in my life...even when I was far away from Him.  

     The other day at church, my pastor talked about gifts that some of us have...I don't have the ability to preach the way that some do.  I don't have eloquent prayers to offer, although my prayers are very heartfelt and just as important.  I am beginning to realize that one of my gifts is my simple as it is.

     My faith is part of me, as natural to me as breathing.  My faith allows me to see the silver lining in clouds that I face.  My faith allowed me to be positive during Jim's cancer.  My faith makes me strong, when in reality, I feel so very weak.  My faith allows me to love when it would be easier to hate.  My faith allows me to do things that I never thought I would be able to do.  

     Faith...being sure of what I hope for and certain of what I do not see.  I know my faith comes from my Father.  I am so grateful that He has given me this wonderful gift.

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

"Drop-in Ready"

     Delainey had another snow day today.  Jim and I both had to work.  Luckily, I have a wonderful friend who is willing to watch D during snow days and delays.  This friend has truly been a God sent person in our life...she was there for us so many times last year during Jim's cancer...always willing and ready for whatever we asked of her.  When I picked D up today, this friend's house was so neat and signs that two seven year olds were there....let alone her other two girls.
     When I got home, I looked around my house.  I am not trying to make comparisons, but I guess that I am.  My house is not neat and tidy.  It isn't dirty, but it is cluttered.  It is unorganized.  It needs work.  I want my house to be a haven for my family.  I don't want to have to move clean laundry from the couch when we sit down.  I need a plan to get my house so that it is "drop-in ready".

     I have tried to do FlyLady, but she stresses me out for some reason.  A good friend gave me her cleaning lists.  I love lists, but all those cleaning lists overwhelm me.  I need to get myself fully onboard with a system in order to get my family fully on board.  I need to start small...and branch out.  I need to focus on one room and make lists for the family.  Jim is a huge help around the house, but he likes to have a list.  And I hate making him lists because I want him to see what needs to be done without me telling him to do it.  Do you see why I get overwhelmed so easily when it comes to cleaning my house?!

     Today, I am going to start with my computer area.  It is in the living room and it is piled high with papers..and stuff.  I am going to sort those papers today.  And I am going to file them.  Then I am going to get all the other junk off the computer area cleaned up.  I will feel that I have accomplished something.  I will keep the computer area cleaned....I will!  Then I will move on.....

     If you drop-in to visit, don't expect a neat and tidy house...maybe some day, but it might take a while for that to happen.  Just know that you are always welcome to visit.  The house might not be neat and tidy, but it is filled with love for those who come to visit.

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Balance...Delainey's way!

     My word of the year, Balance, is also my family's word of the year.  That word means different things for each of us and we all need to find our own balance.  I have a binder of things that I am including in my plan for balance.  Part of Jim's balance is managing work and home a little differently this year.  For Delainey, this means running a 5k...for the family.  Yes, Delainey wants the three of us to run a 5k this year.  So, for the love of my child, I am making plans to run a 5k.

     I have always had friends who are runners.  I know people who run 5k's, half marathons, marathons, ultra-marathons...I don't understand those people, but I like them anyway.  Seriously, I like the idea of running, but the thought of running, not so much!  The thought of running makes me want to crawl back into my bed and hide.

     I am starting to plan now.  I am moving a little more each day.  That in itself is huge for me...I have a job in an office, at a desk.  I drive 2 hours a day on top of being at work 9 hours a day.  That is a lot of sitting.  In March, we are going shopping for running shoes. And then we run.  My plan is to use Couch to 5K to train with.  I know others who started this way, so that is my starting point.  Since I have finally gotten a smart phone, I can download an app to help me (yes, until recently, I still had a phone, just a phone), if I can figure out what that means exactly.

     My friend Liz, from Eternal Lizdom, is planning on running with her daughter. Liz and I don't live close enough to train together, but we can encourage each other...and wonder what on earth our daughters have gotten us in to!  I have friends, both runners and non-runners who I know will encourage me.  And I know that my family will be my biggest source of encouragement.

     We haven't found a race for us yet, but I know that we will.  I have confidence that as a family we will accomplish this goal that Delainey has set for us.  But in the meantime, if you see me lagging behind Jim and Delainey, give me a little encouragement...or a ride to catch up to them!

Friday, January 3, 2014

The Power of Words

     I am enjoying watching so many friends (and friends of friends) pick a word for the year.  I have been picking a word for the year for a while now.  When I pick the word, I am never sure how it will turn out or if the word is really  beneficial, but looking back on my words, I can see how they all worked in my life.

     In 2011, I chose the word "Better".  2011 was a rough year for me.  As a family, we were facing a huge relocation....from the city to the country.  I didn't want to move.  I didn't tell people about it until I had to tell them.  Jim moved before me. I had to transfer to a new job.  We all had big adjustments to make.  I struggled with it each day.   I had to tell myself that each day would get better.  It was hard, but it did get better.  We moved into a house after being in an apartment.  I liked my new job.  Delainey got to enjoy a large yard.  It wasn't a perfect year, but it ended better than it started.

     In 2012, I chose the word "Healthy".  I didn't want to focus on just weight loss, but on all aspects of the word.  Looking back, some could say that the word didn't do much good, as that was the year Jim was diagnosed with cancer.  But leading up to that time we had started taking baby steps to a healthier life.  We started shopping at local farmer's markets each week.  We found a family doctor to take care of us.  We found a church home that we are all happy with.  We were forming new friendships.  We became closer as a family.  We formed the building blocks of a healthier life that would aid us in the fight of Jim's cancer.

     In 2013, I chose the word "Stronger".  Again, I didn't want to focus only on the physical aspect of the word, but my entire being.  I do feel that I grew stronger in many ways.  My faith became so much stronger as the year went on.  Mentally, I am stronger than I have ever been.  As a family, we have become strong together.  My ties to our community have grown stronger.  Physically, I did not grow in strength.  I feel that is my one area that my word didn't ring true.  I had surgery last year and feel that my body has become weaker rather than stronger.  But maybe in order to grow stronger in other areas, the obvious area wasn't as important.

     I am anxious to see what 2014 brings in terms of balance.  I have my goals for the year, but my goals aren't always the end result of my word.  I joked with a friend that sometimes the word chooses you rather than you choosing the word.  I feel that way about "Balance" this year.  If you have a word for the year, good luck on your journey.  I look forward to hearing about your word and the things it brings!

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


     My word journey this year was harder than it has been in previous years.  I am not sure why, it just was.  I thought I had a word, but I wasn't sure.  Jim suggested that we have a work for our family this year...balance.  I am good with a family word, but I still wanted a word for me.  I searched Pinterest looking for words, I read, I prayed.  And one word kept speaking to me.

     On New Year's Eve, I still hadn't decided on my word.  I was up early and began to think....I surfed....I prayed.  And balance is MY word for the year.  I am happy to share it with my family, but I am going to own the word for 2014.  I spent a lot of time Tuesday morning deciding exactly what balance means to me.  I have a balance binder for 2014.  On the cover is an 8 petal flower.  Each petal is part of what I try to balance all the time.  I know that they fluctuate in their need, but as a whole, they need to be in balance.

     I have some goals for the year...some a pretty big goals, some are smaller goals.  I have a plan on how to reach those goals.  I have broken them down into smaller monthly goals.    And every month, I plan to evaluate where I am on those goals.  I am not ready to share them all yet, but hopefully I will get to that point.

     Balance to me is keeping everything in perspective.  Hopefully I have a plan to keep my life in balance for the coming year!