Tuesday, November 27, 2012

10 Things That Always Make Me Smile

This Chicken from the Fair with a REALLY Bad Hair Day
My Beloved
Surprises!  (GOOD ones)
 The Sun Breaking Through The Clouds.  Reminds Me of Heaven.



  My boy!
 Balloons
 This cartoon
 Hummingbirds


 Flowers
 Laughing Babies!  

Monday, November 26, 2012

Just Another Monday

That's about it.  Just another Monday for me. 

Thought I'd be going crazy sending invoices and packaging orders.  Not so much.

Thought I'd be getting pheresis tomorrow....Not so much.  Jacob has a cold.  So now I have to reschedule everything.

Doug was having a fit yesterday over how cluttered and crappy the house looked.  So he cleaned his fool head off.  Yay for that.  But then I get the feeling (quite clearly) that I need to "keep up" with him.  And I can't.  And I get mad.  And he gets mad.

So I'm exhausted.  I took a shower this afternoon after I cleaned the bathroom...the magazine rack in there was a nightmare....dusty, nasty, all old crumpled magazines.  So I went through all those, put them in the burn box, vacuumed the bathroom, mudroom, dining and living rooms.  I can't lift my arms anymore.

And then I get the most beautiful gift.  An MG friend of mine sent me a notebook to keep all my medical information in.  It has all these tabs, and she even put paper in it.  And the front had my name on it in sticky foam letters, and it's amazing! And tucked in the front pocket was an awesome pair of Christmas snowflake socks!  What a blessing.  And what perfect timing.  Cuz here I was all feelin' sorry for myself, and then Doug says the mail is here.  I see advertisement after advertisement... everything junk mail, and then...One big envelope.  With my name on it. From Kimberly. 

So thank you my dear friend.  Thank you for your thoughtfulness.  And thank you God, for letting me know that there ARE people out there that I am important to.  I needed to know that today.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

30 Days of Thanks

Well I've been in such a foul mood from being sick and trapped in this house all month that I didn't feel very positive and thankful.  And I thought it best that I not "share" some of the things I was thankful for at the time...they were a little....well...dark. 

However, due to the faithful prayers of friends and family, God's grace, and me finally getting over that darn cold, I have finally come out of my funk!

So, without further ado:

1.  I am thankful that God always loves me and forgives me when I act like a spoiled child, pout, throw a hissy fit, and stomp my feet like a two year old.

2.  I am thankful for my husband, who although not perfect, is perfect for me.  We balance each other (mostly!) and he keeps me grounded when I start to panic or freak.

3.  I am thankful for my amazing, beautiful little boy.  He is the light of my life.  He always has a smile for me, or something incredibly sweet to say to me to cheer me up.

4.  I am thankful for my parents.  They watch Jacob when I have pheresis, and watched him last night so Doug and I could go on a "date" for the first time in I don't know how long.  

5.  I am thankful for the rest of my family, crazy as we all are.

6.  I am SO SO SO SO thankful for having an amazing Thanksgiving Day at my mom and dad's house.

7.  I am thankful that I was able to go out and shop (TWICE) yesterday, and although today I am exhausted, it was SO worth it to feel like a NORMAL person for once.  Dinner and shopping in the same night???  Without Jacob??  It was AWESOME.

8.  I am beyond thankful for all of my MG friends.  Although most of us have never met, you are closer to me than most people I HAVE met.  Without your support, love, and encouragement, I sould be in a far different place. (And it wouldn't be a good one.)

9. I am thankful for Lindt Lindor truffles. (OH MAH WORD!)

10.  I am thankful for plasmapheresis.  Even though it isn't pleasant, the schedule I am on is giving me some semblance of functional life.

11.  I am thankful for technology like the computer, internet, and phones that help me keep in touch with the people I love.

12. I am thankful for ministries like Crossroad Bible Institute and Christian Pen Pals that reach out to those in prison.

13.  I am thankful for purple things.

14.  I am thankful for bunnies.

15.  I am thankful for how excited my child gets when he sees birds at the bird feeder, and knows what kind they are.

16.  I am thankful for our military.  I am thankful for their families, for their sacrifice, and their service.  Without them, I would not be able to enjoy the freedom that I have.

17.  I am thankful that I can homeschool my son.

18.  I am thankful that my husband is so good at so many things:  if it's broken, he can fix it.  He can cook like a Top Chef, and shoot like a Top Shot.  He has built amazing gifts for me (cedar chest, hope chest, boat shaped book case, jewelry boxes).  He is ingenious.  When I came home from the hospital many years ago, he hooked up my feeding tube and bag to a fishing pole because the machine hadn't arrived yet.  He also fixed my suction machine in the middle of the night, out in the TOTAL boonies in the U.P., in the middle of winter, with an earring wire.  He's amazing!!

19.  I am thankful that my niece's baby boy Caleb (born 2 weeks ago) was healthy and that Jessie had a good delivery.

20.  I am thankful for pizza.

21.  I am thankful for the nurses at the Short Stay Unit at St. Mary's hospital.  That's where I get pheresis, and they are so sweet.  Every single one of them.  They make me feel special and cared for and comfortable every time I'm there.

22.  I'm thankful for the folks at Michigan Blood (aka Grand Valley Blood), who perform the actual pheresis procedure, and take such good care of me while I'm getting my treatments.  They watch me closely and give me 100% of their time and attention when they are there.

23.  I'm thankful for Love Inc. and all the wonderful volunteers that helped to side our house.  I am thankful for Sue Flowers, my contact at Love Inc., and my friend.

24.  I am thankful for Miss Mindy, who comes to my house every other Friday for a couple of hours.  She is a volunteer through Wings of Hope Hospice who started coming to clean, but is now a dear friend.

25.  I'm thankful for my husband's job.  It is stable, steady, reliable, and it is so wonderful to not have to worry about layoffs or things like that.  After all, everybody poops! (For those of you that don't know, my husband is the superintendent of the Wasterwater Treatment plant for the City.)

26.  I am thankful for the mornings I wake up by Jacob coming in to cuddle with me. Even though he's a big boy now, he still loves his Momma, and still wants "Mommy time" to cuddle.

27.  I am thankful that God is the God of the impossible.  Without Him in my life, I wouldn't be here, and therefore neither would Jacob.  My son is a miracle.

28.  I am thankful for the people who read this blog, and who let me know that I in some small way have touched their lives.  Thank you for reading, and thank you for letting me be me, and loving me anyway!!

29.  I am thankful for all of you who have supported my jewelry business so faithfully.  I'm thankful for every. single. sale.  I'm hoping to continue to grow my business and bring Myasthenia Gravis into everyone's awareness as much as other, more "well-known" illnesses.

30.  I am thankful for all the ups and downs in life.  I am thankful that I understand I have to have SOME down times to appreciate the good times.  After all, it is only in the dark of night that you can see the stars.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Phhhhhhhhttttttttt!

Um, yeah.  That's me.  I am in a FUNK.  Serious-big-time-burst-into-tears-twelve-times-a-day-kind of funk.  It's not pretty.

I'm having a terrible time being thankful, which is pathetic, because I have tons of stuff to be thankful for.  I'm alive.  I shouldn't be.  I have a faithful, hard-working husband.  Not everyone does.  I have an amazing, crazy, wild, genius-miracle-child who I shouldn't have been able to carry.  I have a roof over my head and beautiful sunny yellow siding on my home.  I have food on my table.  Which many people don't.

And yet there's just this cloud.

Hanging over me.

I'm just sad.

So much loss.

I'm not consciously focusing on it, but there is a deep, overwhelming sense of loss. 

I wasn't going to post anything, but that's not being true to who I am, and I already tried NOT being true to who I am, and I couldn't handle it.  So this is me.  Flaws and all.  And I feel so flawed.  As a mom.  As a person. As a wife.

I know people love me.  I know God loves me.  I know, I know, I know.  But for some reason it just doesn't seem to be real right now.  Because I sit here.  Alone.  Wanting to be somewhere...anywhere but here.  With someone.  Anyone.  Well, ALMOST anyone.  If the Obama's called I'd have to decline.

I just feel like I'm reaching out to so many, and trying to give and give and give some more....and I'm getting shut down.  I reach out on a personal level to anyone locally, and I get shut down. 

The book club I was SO excited to be a part of....stopped contacting me because I couldn't make their first 2 meetings.  They changed the dates like 4 times.  The first month (August) I could go on the original date, but then they changed it to my son's birthday, because the man that used to teach history couldn't make the original date, and he is just so interesting and wonderful that they just hate to not have him there.

And how does that make ME feel?

Yup.

Less than.

Unimportant.

Without meaning.

And I know it shouldn't bother me that much.  But I've struggled with acceptance all my life.  And I really thought that I had found something I was really going to enjoy.

Then the second month (September) I couldn't go because I was sick on the SECOND date they chose.  The original date was fine.  I could have been there.  But then I got sick, and couldn't make the alternate date.  Then I never got any more emails.

That's what chronic illness has done to me.  It has robbed me of so many opportunities because people judge.  They automatically assume that I'm lazy, or a liar, or making things up, or being melodramatic....  The person who contacted me originally about this book group is a woman with a shop in town.  So when she SEES me, I look good, because it's a day I'm strong enough to go out.  But she doesn't get it.  No one who doesn't HAVE a chronic illness CAN "get it" no matter how hard they try.  But when people don't even try, it really ticks me off.

Anyway.  Enough whining.  I didn't bring any cheese to go with it, so I better stop.



Monday, November 19, 2012

Crowned By The King


I had the incredible opportunity to be part of an amazing ministry called "Crowned By The King" through Christian Women Affiliate.  I received a beautiful necklace....2 actually.  The way this ministry works is that you wear this necklace, and wait for an opportunity to give it away.  That's right, give it away.
The idea is that the crown reminds us that we are daughters of the King...crowned by Him, precious to Him, loved by Him, and important to Him.

When I was presented with this opportunity, the Lord immediately brought a friend of mine to mind. This is a friend I've never met in person, but is a sister in the Lord, and someone I cherish. My friend has had a very difficult year.  So difficult that she took a break from social media, and I didn't hear from her for a while.  Well, she's "back" and I'm so thankful she is!

There are different ways you can give away your crown.  One is to wear it all the time, and if someone compliments your beautiful necklace, and you feel prompted by the Lord, you give them the necklace, and tell them about the love of Christ!  You don't have to be an evangelist, you can use jewelry to spread the love of Jesus!  How cool is that?

The second way is the "need" opportunity.  Maybe you go to the same restaurant for breakfast every Saturday, and one day your normal server seems down.  Give them the necklace, and tell them about what it represents.

The third way, (and this is what I did, since I'm pretty much home-bound,) is to send it to a friend or family member that God lays on your heart.  I sent the necklace to my friend with a note telling her not only how much I care about her, but how precious she is to Our King.

This was her response:

"How can I begin to tell you what a blessing you are to me.  I so needed the message in the package you sent.  I needed the strength and the encouragement and the love that came in the mail....  I needed to know that you cared and that God cared enough to touch your heart for me.  He is amazing...and my Heavenly Father is still there for me.  I needed the reminder of His love.  It is easy to be too hard on myself through all this.  Just wanted you to know that I wore your necklace to church today and got lots of amazing comments on it.  Some day I will tell you my story, but for now, it is enough to know that you are there and that you care.  I hope it is enough for you to know that I do know God lives and that I know He loves each and every one of us.  We are truly His children.  
Thank you Kerri, you are an answer to prayer."

What an honor to be used as such a blessing to another.
I would SO encourage you to check this ministry out.  You can find them on facebook at https://www.facebook.com/crownedbytheking.
I am planning on buying more necklaces to send to some other friends and family, and I will treasure the one I have, and have a spare in my purse every time I go out!

 I received a free copy of this product to review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. I am part of The CWA Review Crew.

Friday, November 16, 2012

This and That....and WHAT?

I'm trying to get caught up on bunches of stuff...But I really needed to catch up on my blog first.  I've been busy doing book reviews.  Love that!  I'm not really making a ton of jewelry since the craft show was such a bust.  I have over 200 pieces to put on my facebook page. (See bracelet on right sidebar if you want to go to my page.  Click there).

One of the things is that I'm super excited to be part of The Jammie Girl's "Share The Love" campaign.  She (Angie) is featuring a bunch of people who have their own businesses making hand-made things, and encouraging people to buy hand-made this year for Christmas!  And I have the honor of being one of those people.

I'm also being featured (along with a bunch of other people) for a week over at Today's Creative Blog starting tomorrow!  I'm so, so excited and hope and pray that this exposure gives me a little jump start for Christmas.  Business has been pretty slow (with the exception of 3 or 4 addicts "regulars").

So anyway, I would encourage you to check out those two blogs because they have SO many creative ideas and products for everyone.  Also, Angie, from The Jammie Girl, has written an e-book about cooking on a budget. You can find information about her book by clicking the picture under "Angie's Book"on the right sidebar of my blog as well.

Okay this is the WHAT??? 

On the news today, I saw that a Deputy for the Kalamazoo Sheriff's Department was seen in the parking lot of a bank, at 3 in the morning, drunk as a skunk, car running, door open, and she was passed out.  According to the law, if a vehicle is running, you can be charged with OUIL (basically driving drunk, up to a 0.17, because 0.18 is considered "super drunk").  So then, I hear that this OUIL is a MISDEMEANOR.  Here are some other misdemeanors:

Disorderly conduct
Urinating in public
Leaving the scene of an accident
Resisting Arrest
Prostitution (seriously??)
Possession of Marijuana
Negligent Homicide (WHAT???)
Reckless Driving (Nice.)

So.  Driving drunk isn't a felony until the THIRD offense.  That is UNACCEPTABLE!!!  My sister was killed by a drunk driver.  Who knows what his driving record was, but it probably wasn't the first time. 

AND because this woman who was found the other night was a DEPUTY, I think the penalty should be even stiffer!  Unreal. She probably won't even get suspended, let alone lose her job. Oh, and the best part?? She pleaded "not guilty." 

In my opinion, the first time should be the last time.  Lock em up.

Then this past week there was this guy who hit another vehicle while he was trashed, killed a 28 year old woman, a 2 year old and a 4 year old, and sent the dad to the hospital.  The drunk is in the hospital now, but when looking at his driving record, it was shown that this a-hole had had his driver's license suspended over TWENTY times.  WHY is this guy on the road at all??  And why is he not in jail???  He had to kill THREE people before he'll end up there??

WHY IS THIS OKAY????  I  mean seriously?  Why aren't people shouting for change?  I don't get it.  I simply do not get it.  Apparently in the state of Michigan, you can drive drunk and get your license suspended 20 or more times before you get locked up...and then it's probably for 4 or 5 months.  You have to KILL someone before anything serious happens to you.  Ridiculous.

I hope and pray that other people who read this get as pissed off as I am, and start writing letters. 


Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Please Welcome Guest Blogger Author Rhonda Rhea!



I am very, very pleased to bring you this guest post from Author Rhonda Rhea.  I am currently reading her book "How Many Lightbulbs Does It Take To Change A Person?" and will be doing a review on it in the next couple of weeks.  In the meantime, please enjoy this terrific article by Rhonda Rhea!

Living in the Light/Dwelling in His Presence
by Rhonda Rhea
excerpt from Chapter 14 of:
How Many Lightbulbs Does It Take to Change a Person?
 
 I admit it, I’m a cruise fan. I love everything about it. Especially the food. A cruise and overeating go together like a hand in glove. Well more accurately, they go together like a size ten hand in a size two glove. All the gourmet food you can eat, for crying out loud! I guess I was just asking for a trip back to maternity pants. I now refer to myself as “17 years post-partum.” The staff on the ship said the average person gains seven to ten pounds on a seven-day cruise. But then, I’ve always considered myself an overachiever.
 
On prime rib night, my husband and I were walking out of the dining room and, even though he was about to let his belt out a notch, Richie said he was thinking of ordering yet another prime rib. Another one! I figured that could cost him at least another two belt notches. I told him I thought that would be a mistake.
 
Get it? Prime rib? “Mis-steak”?
 
Anytime we’re going to overdo, though, it’s good to make sure we’re “overdoing” in all the right areas. First Thessalonians 4:1 talks about living right to please God and then it says, “Now we ask you and urge you in the Lord Jesus to do this more and more.” To do and to overdo. It’s an encouragement to keep growing. Not so much growing in the “bring on the elastic waistbands” kind of growth. But growing in maturity.
 
We grow as we seek to stay in the light, dwelling in the presence of the Lord, making sure our lives are for Him and all about Him. Our growth is not an option. It’s a command. Verse 7 in that same passage in 1 Thessalonians says, “For God did not call us to be impure, but to live a holy life. Therefore, anyone who rejects this instruction does not reject a human being but God, the very God who gives you his Holy Spirit.”
 
Rejecting His instruction? Rejecting the Father Himself? Mistake of the highest order.
 
Growing in Him and dwelling in His presence results in a life in which growing “a notch or two” spiritually is a regular happening. The good kind of growth. And seeking that consistency in growth diligently.
 
There’s a lot at stake. Sometimes also a lot at steak.
 

 
Book Cover PhotoRhonda Rhea is a radio personality, humor columnist, conference/event speaker and author of eight books, including I’m Dreaming of Some White Chocolate, High Heels in High Places, and her newest, How Many Lightbulbs Does It Take to Change a Person? She is presently working on her ninth nonfiction book, scheduled to release in early 2013, and just this week got a yes from a publishing board on a two-book fiction deal co-authored with her daughter, Kaley Faith Rhea. Rhonda is a pastor’s wife and mother of five mostly grown children. She chuckles through the hubbub with pastor/hubby, Richie Rhea, near St. Louis in Troy, Missouri.
Website: rhondarhea.com
 
 
 
About Rhonda's Latest Book:
How Many Lightbulbs Does It Take to Change a Person?—Bright Ideas for Delightful Transformation (New Hope Publishers, 2012). Author and speaker, Patsy Clairmont, calls the book “high voltage humor along with a biblical charge.”
 
In Ephesians 1:18, Paul prays, “that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened.” One version calls it “light” that will “flood your hearts.” God shines so much of His light through Scripture so that we can see—we can have understanding.
 
For every person longing for a change, for everyone who is getting weary in a grisly struggle to make a particular change, God-given enlightenment makes possible real change in every way. Lasting change.
 
The God who is powerful enough to create light, then create the sun—the God who keeps the sun blazing and the stars and moon reflecting—that same God is powerful enough, caring enough, and detail-minded enough to light our way. He wants to show us the path of change, and He longs to light the way for us in His magnificent plan for our lives.
 
How Many Lightbulbs Does It Take to Change a Person is a laugh-along-the-way journey into that light through God’s Word. His Word? Now there’s some enlightening! And I hear enlightening has even been known to strike twice in the same place.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Random Letters Volume #726

(I really have no idea what volume this is, but just plain ol' "Random Letters" is so boring...)

Dear People Whom I Don't Know But Feel Free To Give Me Advice:

Just keep your mouth shut.  If you don't know me, you're not going to know what may or may not help me.  Your start-up company or aromatherapy or living juice topiary isn't going to cure me.  Whether YOU like to admit it or not, some things can't be fixed.  So please stop telling random strangers how to take care of themselves.  You have no IDEA what you're babbling about.

Sincerely,
Random Stranger


Dear 50.9% Of Americans:

Really?  Four years and 8.5 TRILLION dollars wasn't enough for you?  What's next? Standing in a bread line?

Sincerely,
Woman Who Obviously Voted for The Other Guy


Dear Governor of New York:

You banned restaurants from selling super-sized sodas.  Are. You. KIDDING. Me???  Do you honestly have nothing better to do in the entire state of New York??  Like fighting crime, or banning Other Really Dangerous Things like, say, merry-go-rounds?  I mean seriously.  I'm a freaking adult.  And some person, one man, who happens to have the power to do so, is going to tell me how much SODA I can or cannot consume?

Spare me the "America's the fattest country in the world and our children are obese" speech.  I don't deny facts.  However, if PARENTS across the country would be RESPONSIBLE for what their children shove into their mouths, we wouldn't have this issue.  And if I want to drink a 32 oz Diet Coke, who the hell are you to tell me I can't?  Last time I checked, this was STILL (albeit hanging-on-white-knuckled-by-the-seat-of-her-pants) the land of the FREE.  No one is holding a gun to anyone's head forcing them to eat that 20 piece nugget as an appetizer to their 4-Big-Mac, 1/2 pound of fries meal.

Government control is bad enough.  Don't tell me what I can drink, for crying out loud.

Sincerely,
Someone Who Doesn't Really Drink Much Soda But Doesn't Like Being Told What To Do


Monday, November 12, 2012

Whew!

I am one tired girl.

Trying to get over being sick.

Went out shooting yesterday afternoon...It was awesome, but I'm paying for it.

Taking pictures and pictures and more pictures of allllllll the stuff we brought to the craft show, and back home again!

Set of 6 wine glass rings, sea shore motif $15.00
I've gotten all the wine glass ring sets, wine bottle ties, book marks, key fobs, and cell phone accessories posted. 

All that's left is a bunch of Pandora style stuff, and almost 150 pendants on chains.  Mmmmm-hm.  I said 150.  That's how many we had, and we sold maybe 5.
Cell phone lanyard and dust plug $5.00

Anyway, you can check out all the stuff I put on my facebook page by clicking HERE.

Total bust. 

Doing book reviews.

Have to catch up on my pen pals.

Have 2 CBI lessons to do.

Doug was off work today, so that was nice.

Have some jewelry orders to pack and ship out. YAY!!

Have to call the pharmacy yet to call in some refills.

Tired.

AND of course last night I didn't fall asleep til 3:30 AM.  Today I think it will be more like 9:30!!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Sickness Be GONE!

So I'm a little irritated.  I had a counseling appointment in Kalamazoo on Monday.  I get there, and I hear her talking, and she sounds kind of strange.  I see the receptionist backing away from her and telling her to keep the pen she's using.  I'm like, OH great.

I ask her jokingly not to breathe on me.  Doug and Jacob have already gone; they drop me off and then run errands.  Kalamazoo isn't just around the corner from me...and my ride was gone, so I'm like, whatever.

She DID put on a mask for our session, but like that really did any good?  I mean, she had been in the little tiny room with no windows open all day long...  I should have just left.

And then voting last night...Oh my gosh. OH. MY. GOSH.  I was terrified.  The Township I live in probably has about 700 living beings, if you count the sheep.  Well, everyone showed up when I was there (except the sheep).  Talk about the unwashed masses.  EW!

I stood contemplating which little voting booth was the LEAST contaminated, and which was the worst.  The one I figured to be the worst (don't ask me how..) opens up just as it's my turn to go.  Thankfully, just as I was contemplating whether to just bolt out of the overcrowded room getting ready to step forward,  I hear, "Ma'am?  Ma'am?" 

I turn, and see an elderly woman glowing like an angel motion to me, and say, "There's a place in the back you can vote."  I point to myself, and I'm like, "Me?"

She's like, "Yes, last room on the right."  Well, it was the last room on the left, but whatever! (Some grumpy dude was in the last room on the right!)  So I got to sit at a little table, use a pencil that only 20 people had used instead of 200, and didn't have to be in a claustrophobic little booth where millions of germs had been breathed before....

She HAD to be an angel.  Why, at that time, after I had been standing in line for 25 minutes, had she done that?  ANSWERED PRAYER, that's what.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

The Everyday Matters Bible For Women: You Need To Read This!!


The Everyday Matters Bible For Women is an amazing tool for spiritual growth.  This is the first Bible I've owned that is in the New Living Translation. While it's not what I'm used to, I've found it to be a nice change.  This Bible is put together so well, and it's very user-friendly.

Today's woman doesn't necessarily have 2 hours a day to study the Word.  The Everyday Matters Bible has "disciplines" that help you to study in an effective, concise way, and still learn so much!  


Every discipline is explored in four ways 
• Everyday Matters. Two-page articles introduce major themes and focus on an essential part of understanding and practicing a discipline.
• Everyday Profiles. Profiles of twenty-five Biblical women highlight a particular discipline.
• Everyday Q & A’s. Short articles delve into a difficult aspect of the spiritual practice and offer practical help on incorporating the discipline into your daily life.
• Everyday Reflections. Selections illustrate ways to personalize and apply God’s Word to your own situation.

More than 300 articles and features by more than 140 of today’s most well-known Christian leaders and writers, including: Kay Warren, Priscilla Shirer, Elisa Morgan, Nancy & John Ortberg, Richard Foster, Liz Curtis Higgs, and Lauren Winner.
Special Features include . . . 
• 4-color throughout
• Color-coded icons identify each Spiritual Discipline addressed in contributors’ material
• How to Use This Bible in a Small Group Study
• Index of Spiritual Practices
• Resources for further reading


I chose the discipline of Acceptance.  First because I'm completely OCD and have to do things in alphabetical order (I know!), and second because I really do struggle with feeling accepted.  I found studying this discipline to be easy, efficient, and very, very meaningful.  Some of the contributions brought me to tears.  All of them taught me something.  

For example, after reading the Everyday Matters Article under Acceptance, (called "Guard Your Calling" by John Ortberg) I wrote, "I have been chosen.  By God.  And gifted.  To minister to others and influence my world.  Don't be preoccupied by the call, but by the Caller."  This was one of the notes I made that summarized what John Ortberg was saying, and what stuck out in my mind at the time I was reading it. (I have a notebook out while I'm studying so I can take notes.  I remember SO much more if I write it down.)

I would recommend this Bible to any woman.  The New Living Translation lends itself to easy reading and understanding The index in the back of this Bible, listing all the disciplines, is a terrific place to start studying.

If you are interested in this Bible, there are links below that can help.  You will not be disappointed!


Everyday Matters Bible for Women, New Living Translation, 2nd Edition, Hardcover is AVAILABLE NATIONWIDE in bookstores and major retailers for $27.49.  Purchase online at: AmazonChristianbook.com, or at your local retailers

For more information about the Everyday Matters Bible for Women, check these out:

Everyday Matters on Publisher's websitehttp://www.hendrickson.com
Everyday Matters on Facebook:   
http://www.facebook.com/EverydayMattersBible
NEW ACCOUNT on TWITTER:   
https://twitter.com/bibleforwomen



I received a free copy of this Bible to review. I was not required to write a positive review nor was I compensated in any other way. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this in accordance with the FTC Regulations. I am part of The CWA Review Crew.

Monday, November 5, 2012

Saving Cash

Thanks for the post from Sylvester Campbell

We’ve started trying to save money around here because my kids are now both in high school and boy do we need to get a college fund set up. I know it’s something we should have done years ago but you know, at that time we were more concerned about buying our first house or taking the girls to Disney and things like that, not a decade down the road. But the last thing I want is for my kids to graduate from college with mountains of student loan debt like so many of their peers are doing – that’s the worst way for them to start off a new life as adults if you ask me. We’ve taken some steps at home like looking into our energy bills so we can score some Dallas Electric Savings, we’ve been clipping coupons and now my girls know not to ask for new clothes because they’re not going to get it. We made a decision as a family that we weren’t going to take a vacation this year or next so we could put that money into a high yield savings account and you know, I think it’s working so far. My girls are already really responsible and they’ve both got waitressing jobs so they’re saving on their own, too, which is good. I know that when they’re done with college they’ll be thankful for all the sacrifices they’re making now to make for a better future. I really wish we had more to put away each month but you know, we’re doing what we can and every little bit is going to help. I know my girls say they want to work through college anyway and I think that’s a great idea – less time to goof off and get in trouble and more time spent studying and working hard! That’s the work ethic I know my girls have and I can’t wait to see what they make of themselves when they’re all grown up.

This is a sponsored post.

Please Consider This

This is an email that I received yesterday from my cousins Jenny and Greg.  Jenny is Doug's first cousin, and she and Greg live in Wyoming raising 4 children.  This is their word-for-word letter, and I think it is intelligently and thoughtfully written.  I hope and pray you take a moment to read it.

"Please Consider This

To my family and friends,

I’m sending this because I think it is important, and I ask that you please read and consider what I’ve shared.  But, before I begin, I want to sincerely express that I DON’T JUDGE YOU.

If you are pro-choice, please know that I don’t think I’m any better than you, I’m simply at a different place in my life.  I’ve chosen to be here.  We all grow as we learn, we advance in our understandings and we change our minds as we learn there is a reason to do so.  So, if you are pro-choice, I’m asking you to PLEASE consider the following. 

If a woman believes no one else has the right to choose for her, how can she think it is appropriate for her to choose for another (the baby)?  Please think about that for a moment.

We have a voice, but an unborn child has none.  They cannot speak for themselves – they cannot communicate their choice. 

For many, the question is, “When does life being?”  If you still think life begins at birth, please research and consider modern up to date information.  Today’s technology has advanced so much that 3D ultrasounds are like watching a HD video.  I’ve personally watched videos of a baby sucking his thumb, or rubbing his eyes – and you will be shocked to see how early in the pregnancy a baby has little fingers, finger nails, a heartbeat, nerve endings and the ability to feel.  They rub their eyes, hiccup, and suck their thumbs.  How can anyone really conclude unborn babies are not a life?  Ask any Mother of four or more, and she’ll tell you she could detect different personalities in her children based upon their behavior in her womb.  They are a life, and if you will just look at some modern day video footage, I don’t see how any reasonable person could honestly disagree. 

My opinion – I think abortion is the single biggest crime/sin of our time.

In 2008 there were more than 3,300 abortions a day, seven days a week (1.21 million that year alone), just in this country.  While most of us are busy living our lives - not really thinking about or paying attention to what is happening, a mass execution is literally taking place right under our noses. 

Why?

Because, in 1973 when the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in favor of abortion, we did not have high definition video of a baby in the womb, and still today, many of us have simply never taken a moment to see the new information.

I’m asking you to please take a little time to watch some modern day videos and make your own choice.  The web site www.abort73.com has some good information.  Many of the videos are graphic so you’ll have to decide what you choose to watch, and what you read instead.  It is difficult to see some of it, but it is difficult because it is real, and it is wrong.  Each of us needs to know these facts.  The outcome is too important to ignore or to allow ourselves to be uniformed.  Please take a couple of minutes to look, and then decide what you think is right.

And in closing, I want you to ask yourself, “Who are you going to vote for?”  My conscience dictates that I vote for Romney, after all, how can any Christian justify voting for a pro-choice candidate?  A pro-choice vote equals voting for, and approving of, killing babies.  That might sound harsh, but it is an accurate statement – watch the videos and see if you disagree.

How can the economy, the unemployment rate, taxes, foreign policy, or anything, be more important than aborting over a million innocent babies each year?

I’m voting pro-life, not pro-abortion.

It’s not really about choice.  Pro-choice is a misleading label that confuses what is REALLY the issue.  It is not about choice, it is about life or death.  That is honestly what it distills down to, so let’s not sugar coat it, let’s call it what it is.

Please review and think about the information that is now available, and if you change your mind about being pro-abortion, I hope you’ll join me in giving helpless and innocent babies a voice.   If you already agree with me, I hope this email strengthens your resolve to make a difference.

If you want to make a difference, but don’t know how, please contact me and I’d be happy to share what I’ve learned.

Sincerely,
Greg Smith
Casper, WY"

Greg also said this letter was fine to share, forward, whatever.  So if you feel inclined, please do so.

Thank you.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

10 Things That Tell Me I'm Old

10.  I do not recognize any of the bands that I hear mentioned on TV shows like the "X" Factor.  I didn't even know who Demi Lovato was, although I HAVE heard her song Skyscraper.  Don't know where....

9.  I have said at least 50 things to my son that I vowed I would never say to MY child.

8.  I have undoubtedly turned into my mother (see number 9).  Although if you know my mother, that really is NOT a bad thing. (love ya mom)

7.  I understand why my mother (who raised 5 children) used to sit in the living room, in the dark, with no TV on, no radio, not reading anything or talking to anyone, or even sleeping.  And I used to think she was crazy. 

6.  I completely get what it was like to have me for a child.  Mouth running 24 hours a day.  NON-stop.

5.  I have zits and wrinkles at the same time.  There is absolutely NOTHING okay with that!!

4.  For the first time, I colored my hair to get rid of some gray.

3.  I PLUCKED the crap out of my eyebrows because THEY were turning gray.  I used to say, "Pluck my eyebrows? What the heck for?  I don't have a unibrow.  And it HURTS to pluck."  Now, I can't tell you what I say when I DO pluck them because my mother reads my posts. : )

2.  My hips creak louder than the steps do when I go up them.

1.  I have actually said these words while driving, "Turn that music down!  I can't see!"


Friday, November 2, 2012

10 Things I Believe In

I got this blog post idea from MamaKat, because my brain is so fried I sat here staring at my screen wondering what the heck I was going to write about....  So I remembered Mama Kat's writing prompts.  Make sure you check her out....she's awesome!

So.  Here are 10 Things I Believe In:

1.  I believe in God.  I am living proof that He IS.  There is no medical reason I should be alive, let alone functional.  And yet here I am.  I have a beautiful child, a wonderful husband, and my brain still (mostly) works.  I see God in creation around me, in the love of my family, in the hug of a friend, in the face of my child.  I see Him in my home, my life, and my heart.

2.  I believe in Hope.  If I did not have hope, I would not be here.  Simple as that.  Hope keeps me alive.

3.  I believe that you can meet people on the Internet that can either be toxic or terrific.  Thankfully, I have met more of the latter.  I have met others with MG whom I can talk to like best friends who have known each other for decades.   I hate this disease, but I'm so thankful for the people it has brought into my life.

4.  I believe in the sanctity of marriage.  I believe in commitment, loyalty, fidelity and trust in a marriage.  I believe in that because I have that.  And I thank God I do.

5.  I believe in Heaven.  I know that when I die, I will go to heaven, see my God face to face, sing, dance, and feel no pain.  No pain.  No tears.  No MG.  I am so ready.  What about you?

6.  I believe in writing.  I think writing is completely cathartic.  I would be lost if I couldn't write.  Not just my blog, but journals, letters to loved ones... Writing has saved me from many an angry confrontation.  I have written and ripped up or deleted countless letters.  You know the kind...you write you heart and soul down, you rip someone up one side and down the other, and then you feel better.  Love it.

7.  I believe in saying what you mean, and meaning what you say.  If you're not going to do it, don't say you are.  If you say you love me, then walk it out.

8.  I believe in standing up for what you believe in, no matter how unpopular it may be.  I will never cower under someone else's belief system, nor will I change my opinion to make someone else happy.  I am who I am, I believe what I believe, so take it or leave it.

9.  I believe in walking what you talk.  I have strong beliefs and opinions, but I back them up.  If I'm preaching somethin', you better believe I'm doin' it too.  I do NOT believe in hypocrisy, and that is exactly what I would be if I didn't stand behind what I preach.

10. I believe in the power of love.  I believe it can change a person.  I believe that if you really love someone, you will be there for them, you will support them, and you will do whatever you can to make them happy.  I love to love more than I hate to hurt.  So I will love you until you give me reason not to.

Thanks again to MamaKat for some great inspiration!

SO....what do YOU believe in??

Thursday, November 1, 2012

A Couple of Funnies

Um, yeah.  Especially today.  MG hangover hard-core.

This one is laugh-out-loud funny, if you ask me.  STILL makes me laugh!

And finally....If this sounds familiar, don't worry.  Hopefully it will all be over very, very soon.

Don't Owe You Anything
The bartender asks the guy sitting at the bar, “What’ll you have?” The guy answers, “A scotch, please.”
The bartender hands him the drink, and says, “That’ll be five dollars,” to which the guy replies, “What are you talking about? I don’t owe you anything for this.”
A lawyer, sitting nearby and overhearing the conversation, then says to the bartender, “You know, he’s got you there. In the original offer, which constitutes a binding contract upon acceptance, there was no stipulation of remuneration.”
The bartender was not impressed, but says to the guy, “Okay, you beat me for a drink. But don’t ever let me catch you in here again.”
The next day, same guy walks into the bar. Bartender says, “What the heck are you doing in here? I can’t believe you’ve got the audacity to come back!”
The guy says, “What are you talking about? I’ve never been in this place in my life!” The bartender replies, “I’m very sorry, but this is uncanny. You must have a double.”
To which the guy replies, “Thank you. Make it a scotch.”.