Sunday, December 18, 2011

Finding JOY

Hope everyone is enjoying this season of celebration.

Galatians 4:4-5

  But when the set time had fully come, God sent his Son, born of a woman, born under the law,  to redeem those under the law, that we might receive adoption to sonship.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Holiday HOP

Need perspective?

A fabulous post that won't disappoint!!

Need a DIY gift?

You may find it here as well as spend a few minutes, um, hours looking around.

Unwrap today at Chatting at the Sky.

Verse of the day straight from my Father.

Enjoy the exercise.

I did!

Monday, November 28, 2011

It's Beginning to Look a lot like Christmas!!

Enjoyed a lovely holiday with family.

Now back to reality with learning, laundry and lists to complete.

Christmas is the season for kindling the fire of hospitality in the hall, the genial flame of charity in the heart. 

~Washington Irving

Thursday, November 24, 2011

All Because

"Thank you Lord for loving me,

Thank you Lord for saving me,

Thank you Lord for making me whole

and saving my soul."

He has blessed my life in the good times and in bad.

Counting many blessings today.
Hope of heaven
Warm autumn days
Laughing children
Joy in my heart
Sound of music and the gift of hearing "I LOVE YOU"
Seeing creation
Being able to take a walk without pain
Kisses given and received
The warm glow of candles
A good book...THE GOOD BOOK

And the list goes on and on.

All because of Him.

He became flesh and made his dwelling among us.


Friday, November 11, 2011


(Thoughts on a fallen soldier--my friend Dave)

All those in the military, past or present,
especially my father.

T H A N K   YOU!!!

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Hiking, Ten and the LIGHT

We were able to get away and enjoy a hike at Chimney Rock Park.

The weather was perfect.
The trees were beautiful.
The waterfalls were gorgeous.

The kids did not complain once about the moderately difficult hike.
Sophie made it all the way to the top with little or no help from Mom or Dad.

My precious first born turned 10 last week.
I am in disbelief that ten years have past since she made me a mother for the first time.
I am so proud of the young lady she is becoming.
I pray she will continue to walk in the Light.

But if we walk in the light, as he is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus his Son cleanses us from all sin.
1 John 1:7

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Interesting Reads

Davey Ramsey fans only!!

Hope all is well in your neck of the woods.

We're enjoying the beautiful scenes of fall that change every day.
Today is warm, sunny and gorgeous.
Tomorrow calls for rain.
Headed outside to smell the season.

Faith in Training
C S Lewis
Mere Christianity

Now Faith, in the sense in which I am here using the word, is the art of holding on to things your reason has once accepted, in spite of your changing moods. For moods will change, whatever view your reason takes. I know that by experience. Now that I am a Chrisitian I do have moods in which the whole thing looks very improbable: but when I was an atheist I had moods in which Christianity looked terribly probable. This rebellion of your moods against your real self is going to come anyway. That is why Faith is such a necessary virtue: unless you teach your moods 'where they get off', you can never be either a sound Christian or even a sound atheist, but just a creature dithering to and fro, with its beliefs really dependent on the weather and the state of its digestion. Consequently one must train the habit of Faith.
The first step is to recognize the fact that your moods change. The next is to make sure that, if you have once accepted Christianity, then some of its main doctrines shall be deliberately held before your mind for some time every day. That is why daily prayers and religious readings and churchgoing are necessary parts of the Christian life. We have to be continually reminded of what we believe. Neither this belief nor any other will automatically remain alive in the mind. It must be fed. And as a matter of fact, if you examined a hundred people wha had lost their faith in Christianity, I wonder how many of them would turn out to have been reasoned out of it by honest argument? Do not most people simply drift away?

Saturday, October 15, 2011


Sophie-"Can I have a doughnut after lunch?"

Mom- "Sure"

After lunch, "I changed my mind. I'm full!"--Sophie

A couple of hours later

Sophie-"I have my mind back. Can I have a doughnut now?"

Thursday, October 13, 2011

What in the World has been Going On?

Sweet Cousins

Mr. Frog that peed on Sophie's head

Flowers against the night sky

Cool Chloe on a cool autumn evening at Lake Cooley

A little of this and a little of that.

This season of life is full.

The blog tends to get the least attention and I miss coming here.

My goal is to update once a week with pictures, quotes and the occasional story from our lives.


Rubenstein, the great musician, once said, "If I omit practice one day, I notice it, my friends notice it: if three days, the public notices it."
It is the old doctrine, 
"Practice makes perfect."
We must continue believing, continue praying, continue doing His will.
Suppose along any line of art, one should cease practicing, we know what the result will be.

If we would only use the same quality of common sense in our religion that we use in everyday life, we should go on to perfection.

The motto of David Livingston was in these words,
"I determined  never to stop until I had come to the end and achieved my purpose."

By unfaltering persistence and faith in God he conquered.

Reading Luke 18:1-8 today.

Hoping that practice makes perfect in your life today.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Need a Laugh Today?

Quotes from Sophie:

Mom- "Sophie, you need to pick up your toys please."

After a moment, Sophie, "If I was YOUR mom, I would pick them up for YOU!"

Sophie- "Mom, can you help me put on my underwear? I can't waste time on this."

Sophie- "I know what I can get for Christmas- a GPS and and I-pad."

Thanks be to God for his indescribable gift!
 2 Corinthians 9:15

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The Problem with Self.

I am suffering from self disease. 

There is only one cure.

"Some are in self-they are determined by self-interest primarily-it is the driving force of their lives. To get and to get on for self is the compelling motive. 

Some are in the herd. Before they act, they look around-they don't act: they only react to what the herd does. The roots of their motives are in, "What will people think?" Making self, or the herd, our god, is sin, the chief sin.

To be 'in Christ' means to pull up the roots of one's very life from the soil of sin and self and the herd and plant them in Christ. he becomes the source of our life, the source of our thinking, our feeling, our acting, our being.

This obviously involves self surrender. Not merely the surrender of our sins, our bad habits, our wrong thinking and our wrong motives, but the very self behind all of these. All of these are symptoms: the unsurrendered self is the DISEASE.

So the phrase, in Christ, is not only the ultimate concept, but it demands the ultimate act,

We don't own our money, our property, not even the house we live in, for we will leave it all behind. The only thing we will take with us is just

It is the only thing we own-
the self-
is deliberately handed back to the Giver in an act of supreme self surrender with words something like these:
"I can't handle this self of mine. Take me as I am, and make me as I ought to be. I give myself and my sins and my problems to Thee: but myself first and foremost."

We lose ourselves, and to our astonishment, find ourselves.

We live when we live
E. Stanley Jones
Missionary to India in the first half of the century

We have been educating,

(Sophie turned 4!!)



this week.

Have a great Thursday.

Thursday, September 15, 2011


Hebrews 11:8

By faith Abraham, when called to go to a place he would later receive as his inheritance,
obeyed and went, 
even though 
he did not know where he was going. 

"Faith never knows where it is being led, but it loves and knows the One,who is leading. it is a life of faith, not of intellect and reason, but a life of knowing Who makes us "go." The root of faith is the knowledge of a Person and one of the biggest snares is the idea that God is sure to lead us to success.
The final stage in the life of faith is the attainment of character: when we pray we feel the blessing of God enwrapping us and for the time being we are changed, then we go back to the ordinary days and ways and the glory vanishes. The life of faith is not a life of mounting up with wings, but a life of walking and not fainting. It is not a question of sanctification but of something infinitely further on than sanctification, of faith that has been tried and proved and has stood the test. Abraham is not a type of sanctification, but a type of the life of faith, a tried faith built on a real God.
"Abraham believed God."
Oswald Chambers

Living by faith today.

Thursday, September 8, 2011

What We've Been Up To Lately

Life around here has been a little complicated.

Transitioning from the lazy fun days of summer to the scheduled days of school has been a little hard for everyone.

But we're slowly accepting the fact that it's not too bad to broaden your horizons and fill your mind with interesting historical facts.
Our bodies that God has given us are pretty amazing too as we are discovering.

Our friends who lost their son tragically laid him to rest in 
Arlington Cemetery.
A huge honor for such a fine young man!!
They now are left the difficult task of emptying his home and learning how to live the new normal.

Today there is a hint of fall in the air and leaves are beginning to cover the grass.
Reminding us that autumn is near.

Drawing near to God today.

New Living Translation (NLT)

Psalm 125

A song for pilgrims ascending to Jerusalem.
 1 Those who trust in the Lord are as secure as Mount Zion;
      they will not be defeated but will endure forever.
 2 Just as the mountains surround Jerusalem,
      so the Lord surrounds his people, both now and forever.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

What I love Today

Things I am loving this Wednesday.

Not one, but two delicious cups of coffee

One last swim before the pool closes (not ours, but a dear friend's who let's us swim all summer)

The anticipation of a surprise party this weekend (LOVE surprises)

Knowing I have been REDEEMED

The sun rose again this morning announcing the gift of a new day

As long as there is breath in me


Friends in my life who hold me accountable

Ecclesiastes 4:9-12

 Two are better than one,
   because they have a good return for their labor:
 If either of them falls down,
   one can help the other up.
But pity anyone who falls
   and has no one to help them up.
 Also, if two lie down together, they will keep warm.
   But how can one keep warm alone?
 Though one may be overpowered,
   two can defend themselves.
A cord of three strands is not quickly broken.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011


Living each minute with joy today.

Sudden loss causes reflection and brings the important thing in focus.

Hope you are living life today with all that you are...

like Sophie!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011


There really isn’t a collection of superlatives that you could string together that would do justice to Capt. David Hortman, a beacon of all our hopes for the future taken from us last Monday in a training accident at Ft. Benning.
He represented the best of us, distilled and concentrated in the body of a young man endowed with immense ability and yet tempered by a disarming humility. I knew him, and my life is the richer for it.
His life was set so firmly on a trajectory of increasing achievement, and all who knew him lived with the certainty that here was a young man who would change the world.
That he most certainly did in the 30 years he lived among us.
But for those of us who remain and are now contemplating a future where we can’t see that greatness grow ever greater, where we can’t talk to him or hear him laugh or see that dazzling smile – we are left with the unanswerable question: why?
I am certain that David would be uncomfortable with the praises others and I are paying to him and his memory. But even more than this, I am certain he would point all of us to the God in whom he had an unassailable faith. He would remind us that God has a plan for every life and that every moment of every life is a gift.
I don’t know why God decided that David and fellow pilot Stephen Redd had done with their missions here, but I am sure they were greeted with the words, “Well done, my good and faithful servant.”
In circumstances like this where such promising lives are cut off seemingly prematurely, I can only think that sometimes God is so pleased with the service of such men that He calls them to his side all the sooner.
With the loss of such men as these, who can argue that our community, our state, our nation does not pay a heavy price to safeguard our freedom? There is no distinction between losing such as these in combat versus losing them during training. Such men are our heroes whether they fall to a rocket on a hillside in Afghanistan or are claimed by mishap amid the pines and scrub of south Georgia.
David Hortman remains a leader, and the most fitting tribute we can pay to his memory is to try to live by the same principles of compassion, faith and selfless service that made him such a beacon of promise and achievement. He shows us what is possible if we live up to our highest natures.
I realize that my words offer cold comfort to David’s family and to the people of this community this marvelous young man touched. In closing I offer the words of John Donne from 400 years ago as he lay in his sickbed contemplating the meaning of a tolling bell. He expresses so eloquently how we all should feel at the tolling of the bells for David’s passing.
All mankind is of one author and is one volume. When one man dies, one chapter is not torn out of the book but translated into a better language, and every chapter must be so translated. God employs several translators; some pieces are translated by age, some by sickness, some by war, some by justice, but God’s hand is in every translation; and his hand shall bind up all our scattered leaves again, for that library where every book shall lie open to one another…”

Jay King can be reached at (864)237-4154 and at

1st. Lt. David Hortman in March 2006 shortly after he completed Ranger training at Ft. Benning.

(written by my friend Jay King)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

He Gives and Takes Away

I can't even begin to imagine the depth of grief that our friends are going through as their lives have been forever changed.

David was a faithful, brave and courageous man who fought in the Iraq war.
He once spoke in church after returning.
He said he thought of heaven each minute and knew that God was with him in the midst of danger.
His faith and courage touched many lives
we still praise God.

Blessed be the name of the Lord.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Crying with HOPE Today

 We are mourning and weeping with dear friends today

who lost their son tragically at Fort Benning yesterday.

Hug those you love often

Say I love you

Love deeply 

Don't sweat the small stuff

It really doesn't matter that your living room has not been updated in years or that you don't have the latest clothes or... 

the list could go on and on.

What really matters is loving God

and loving others.

Things of eternal importance.

Live each day as if it were your last.


 Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort,  who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God. 

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 

Friday, August 5, 2011

Silliness, Lost Teeth and What We've Been Up To

 Learning to crochet
 He lost his tooth but we found it!!
 Sliding with Nina!
 Swimming with friends
Getting new hairdos at the Spa

What have you been doing this summer?

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Hangin' On

To see the Summer Sky
Is Poetry, though never in a Book it lie -
True Poems flee.
~Emily Dickinson

Relishing the dog days of summer.
Hot they may be, we are savoring the days of freedom and fun.

Hope your summer has been full of picnics, swimming and star gazing
with only a few itchy mosquito bites.

Trying not to think that in less than a month we'll be back to the books.
But for now, I think Longfellow says it best.

Then followed that beautiful season... Summer....
Filled was the air with a dreamy and magical light; and the landscape
Lay as if new created in all the freshness of childhood.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Daddy Love

"Certain is it that there is no kind of affection so purely angelic as of a father to a daughter. In love to our wives there is desire; to our sons, ambition; but to our daughters there is something which there are no words to express."
- Joseph Addison
Thankful this Tuesday for a husband who cherishes his family. 

I hope that one day I can take beautiful photos like her.
Check out her site!!

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

It is Well

My sin, 
oh, the bliss 
of this glorious thought! 
My sin, 
not in part 
but the whole, 
 is nailed to the cross, 
  and I bear it no more, 
praise the Lord, 
praise the Lord, O my soul!
This hymn was written by a Chicago lawyer, Horatio G. Spafford. You might think to write a worship song titled,
'It is well with my soul', you would indeed have to be a rich, successful Chicago lawyer. But the words,
"When sorrows like sea billows roll ... It is well with my soul”, were not written during the happiest period of
Spafford's life. On the contrary, they came from a man who had suffered almost unimaginable personal tragedy.

Horatio G. Spafford and his wife, Anna, were pretty well-known in 1860’s Chicago. And this was not just because
of Horatio's legal career and business endeavors. The Spaffords were also prominent supporters and close
friends of D.L. Moody, the famous preacher. In 1870, however, things started to go wrong. The Spaffords' only
son was killed by scarlet fever at the age of four. A year later, it was fire rather than fever that struck. Horatio
had invested heavily in real estate on the shores of Lake Michigan. In 1871, every one of these holdings was
wiped out by the great Chicago Fire.

Aware of the toll that these disasters had taken on the family, Horatio decided to take his wife and four
daughters on a holiday to England. And, not only did they need the rest -- DL Moody needed the help. He was
traveling around Britain on one of his great evangelistic campaigns. Horatio and Anna planned to join Moody in
late 1873. And so, the Spaffords traveled to New York in November, from where they were to catch the French
steamer 'Ville de Havre' across the Atlantic. Yet just before they set sail, a last-minute business development
forced Horatio to delay. Not wanting to ruin the family holiday, Spafford persuaded his family to go as planned.
He would follow on later. With this decided, Anna and her four daughters sailed East to Europe while Spafford
returned West to Chicago. Just nine days later, Spafford received a telegram from his wife in Wales. It read:
"Saved alone."

On November 2nd 1873, the 'Ville de Havre' had collided with 'The Lochearn', an English vessel. It sank in only
12 minutes, claiming the lives of 226 people. Anna Spafford had stood bravely on the deck, with her daughters
Annie, Maggie, Bessie and Tanetta clinging desperately to her. Her last memory had been of her baby being
torn violently from her arms by the force of the waters. Anna was only saved from the fate of her daughters by a
plank which floated beneath her unconscious body and propped her up. When the survivors of the wreck had
been rescued, Mrs. Spafford's first reaction was one of complete despair. Then she heard a voice speak to her,
"You were spared for a purpose." And she immediately recalled the words of a friend, "It's easy to be grateful
and good when you have so much, but take care that you are not a fair-weather friend to God."

Upon hearing the terrible news, Horatio Spafford boarded the next ship out of New York to join his bereaved
wife. Bertha Spafford (the fifth daughter of Horatio and Anna born later) explained that during her father's
voyage, the captain of the ship had called him to the bridge. "A careful reckoning has been made", he said, "and
I believe we are now passing the place where the de Havre was wrecked. The water is three miles deep." Horatio
then returned to his cabin and penned the lyrics of his great hymn.

The words which Spafford wrote that day come from 2 Kings 4:26. They echo the response of the Shunammite
woman to the sudden death of her only child. Though we are told "her soul is vexed within her", she still
maintains that 'It is well." And Spafford's song reveals a man whose trust in the Lord is as unwavering as hers

It would be very difficult for any of us to predict how we would react under circumstances similar to those
experienced by the Spaffords. But we do know that the God who sustained them would also be with us.

No matter what circumstances overtake us may we be able to say with Horatio Spafford...
When peace like a river, attendeth my way,
When sorrows like sea billows roll;
Whatever my lot, Thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
Let this blest assurance control,
That Christ hath regarded my helpless estate,
And hath shed His own blood for my soul!

It is well ... with my soul!
It is well, it is well, with my soul
(Courtesy of Bible Study Charts)

Thursday, July 14, 2011


Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind.
 Romans 12:2

Sophie's version:
"Do not be deformed to the pattern of the world"
(minus all the "r's")

Wednesday, July 13, 2011


Have you read

"one thousand gifts" by Ann Voskamp yet?

You won't regret delving into this thought provoking book.

Want a taste of what's inside?

"How I want to see the weight of glory break my thick scales,
the weight of glory smash the chains of desperate materialism, 
split the numbing shell of deadening entertainment, 
bust up the ice of catatonic hearts.
I want to see God,
who pulls on the coat of my skin and doesn't leave me
alone in this withering body of mortality.
I want to see God,
who gives gifts in hospitals and gravesides
and homeless shelters and refugee camps and in rain falling on sunflowers
and stars falling over hayfields
and silver scales glinting upriver
and sewage flowing downriver.
Eucharisteo (to be grateful, to give thanks) is everywhere
and I want to see eucharisteo everywhere and

I want to remember how badly 
I really want to see."

"All beauty is only reflection."

"And whether I'm conscious of it or not,
any created thing of which I am amazed,
it is the glimpse of His face to which I bow down.
Do I have eyes to see it's Him and not the thing?
Satan came in the scales that gleamed,
a thing of beauty,
and he lured the first woman and she was deceived.

Do I have eyes to see His face in all things so I'm not merely dazzled
by the trinket,
glitzy bauble dangling for the ogling,
till it flakes and breaks
and I strain for more to lie prostate before?"

You will NOT be disappointed.

Have a blessed day!!

Sunday, July 10, 2011


“The happiest people 
don’t have the best of everything, 
they just 
make the best of everything.”

Friday, July 8, 2011

Still I Will Praise

This link will lead you to a courageous yet heartbreaking journey
of a woman battling the final stages of breast cancer.
Even in the valley of the shadow of death
she still praises God.


Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
Your perfect love is casting out fear
And even when I'm caught in the middle of the storms of this life
I won't turn back
I know you are near

And I will fear no evil
For my God is with me
And if my God is with me
Whom then shall I fear?
Whom then shall I fear?

Oh no, You never let go
Through the calm and through the storm
Oh no, You never let go
In every high and every low
Oh no, You never let go
Lord, You never let go of me

And I can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
A glorious light beyond all compare
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
We'll live to know You here on the earth


Yes, I can see a light that is coming for the heart that holds on
And there will be an end to these troubles
But until that day comes
Still I will praise You, still I will praise You

Saturday, July 2, 2011

You were RIGHT

 For those of you who guessed praying mantis...

Right on!

By any name, these fascinating insects are formidable predators. They have triangular heads poised on a long "neck," or elongated thorax. Mantids can turn their heads 180 degrees to scan their surroundings with two large compound eyes and three other simple eyes located between them.

They use their front legs to snare their prey with reflexes so quick that they are difficult to see with the naked eye. Their legs are further equipped with spikes for snaring prey and pinning it in place.
(National Geographic facts)

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Don't delete the "Bad" Ones

Hanging on to a few of the funny pictures as a 
of his silly personality 
that makes my heart

Good things I am thankful for today:

A laughing 3 year old to wake me up bright and early

Creamy coffee

A husband who is diligent in his work

Sunshine streaming through the window saying
"You have the gift of another day, make the most of it!"

A clean kitchen, at least for the moment
So glad I decided to spend the extra time last night putting it back in order
Choosing today to acknowledge goodness.

Hoping you find it too!

But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared,
He saved us.
Titus 3:4-5

Monday, June 27, 2011

Monday, Monday

Three of the greatest treasures on this earth.

Rejoicing in their lives today and renewing my commitment to God to raise them intentionally for Him.

This week will be laid back around here.

Thank goodness!

Last week was overflowing with outside activities and play dates.

Being busy can sometimes cause you to lose focus.
(me anyway)

Getting back to the important things in life today and walking by faith in the one who gives us HOPE.

What are you focusing on this week?

Psalm 138:8

The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me;
 your steadfast love, O LORD, endures forever.
   Do not forsake the work of your hands.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

A Reminder

Have you ever been in need of a reminder?

What's your purpose in this life?

Are you on the right path?

These questions needed answers.

So I went to the Word!

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
Psalm 119:105

Hiding God's word in your heart comes in handy when you're struggling.

He led me to Ephesians 2:10.

For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works...

Thank you God!!

Lately I've been



Being silent




So now while I wait and listen, I will trust.

Vowing not to listen to the enemies lies!

Though the fig tree should not blossom, nor fruit be on the vines, the produce of the olive fail and the fields yields no food, the flock be cut off from the fold and there be no herd in the stalls, 

yet I will rejoice in the God of my salvation. 
God, the Lord is my strength: 

he makes my feet like the deer's: 
he makes me tread on high places.

Habakkuk 3:17-19

Proverbs 16:20

Whoever gives thought to the word will discover good, and blessed is he who 

Sunday, June 19, 2011


Remembering my father today.
The life he lived was one worth celebrating.

I am grateful that my children have a father who loves them and chooses to bring them up in the "discipline and instruction of the Lord."

I praise my Father in heaven who gave his only Son so that I might live.

Because of that sacrifice, I know what love is.

Happy Father's Day.

Friday, June 17, 2011


 This morning I passed by our back door and saw this.
I was able to capture the moment without being noticed.
Such a sweet picture of complete peace and solitude
if but for just a moment.
Sophie is really into sniffing flowers these days.
She insists on stopping at every flower we pass.
"Mommy", she says, "Smell this one."

I treasure this time.
My children's lives are innocent and sweet.

Hope you have a terrific weekend.

Any magnificent plans?
We're just hanging out looking forward to doing