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It’s my hope that you’ll find help, encouragement, and inspiration through the many years of blog entries, articles and links accumulated here. God bless you & thank you for visiting. ☕ Join me here anytime as I share “slices of life” —experiences, observations, joys & sorrows and blessings beyond the counting.

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In This Strange Season

In this strange season I attempted to ‘rethink’ this blog, realign it, redirect it.  And, for the life of me, I haven’t been able to “get it” or come to a resolution. But, here’s my attempt…

In this past year—this strange season, many changes have occurred in my life and our home. In this strange season (as in your strange season, no doubt) the changes and restrictions have forced me to think about or, rethink what I’m doing, what’s important, what’s got to change or, really, what ought to be eliminated.

And it’s not just things, it’s not just eliminating clutter or getting rid of things we no longer use or need. It’s more than that. It’s coming to the strange realization that a season is passing away and a new one is dawning.  And with this new dawn, eliminating things, activities, routines, expectations and planning of events that were necessary for the season that’s passing and yet, will be unnecessary for the season ahead.

Nothing and everything has prepared me for this strange season.  The constant that I’ve resorted to through many years is: Do the next right thing.  Another constant is recalling what did I do? whenever I was facing a completely “new normal” or a “strange season” — motherhood, postpartum, another move, another new baby, homeschooling, teenagers, financial strains, another move, more babies, married-in’s, more teenagers, losses, more married-in’s, grand babies, life’s surprises, health issues… you get the idea.

So, what’s my next right thing now? You know what? I don’t know—I mean I don’t know the big picture. I’ve been a mother for over 41 years and now for all intents and purposes have an empty nest—but am still a homemaker.   I don’t know how I want to do the days ahead… But what I do know is this: as I embark on this strange season, I want to do what I will wish I had done.  This thought quite often helps me decide what the next right things is.  My hope is that each next right thing or each next right step will be through open doors and the days ahead will be more fruitful than the former days.

The Covid-19 virus and all the societal changes that have come as a result have really clouded, hindered, or suppressed creative thought for me —maybe (and probably!) for you, too.  The lockdown brought some pretty depressing weeks. And now, I look back and it seems the past 5 months have just evaporated in all the busyness of life and “distancing”, creatively keeping in contact with our kids and grandkids, but not seeing friends and church family (in real life) and figuring out how to do/buy/get things differently and yet still accomplish the work — and the new-normal Zoom communication.

In the midst of the strangeness, I lost creativity… I didn’t write. I didn’t journal. I didn’t draw. I didn’t write letters. I didn’t make any wedding cakes.

I did prune trees, plants, hedges. I did read. I did make lots of masks (I hate masks!).  I did plant and regularly tend to the gardens. I did bake and (with my husband) drive all around several times to deliver boxes of a variety of baked goods to the homes of each of our children/grandchildren. I did clean and sort a lot of things. I did Bible studies. I made birthday cakes. I did and will do a bunch of canning. And I’m making plans……….

But nothing’s been normal.  And I want guard against all this strangeness becoming normal.  So, as I said, I want to be about the business of doing what I will wish I had done in this next season.  That, and I don’t want to look back and regret any longer what I didn’t do in this strange, strange season.

more later… ♥ps

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The Gathering

The gathering happened and afterward I returned home again to my warm, comfortable, familiar, safe haven. Now, nearly two weeks later, I look back with heartfelt gratefulness. It was such a stretch for me, but I’m so glad I met the people I did and am thankful for the messages that were shared.

Over the years I’ve headed women’s ministries, Bible studies, retreats, and other church events. So I totally get the gatherings deal and the sincerest efforts to create a space where women will gather, feel the love, be ministered to, and not feel like they’re on the outside.

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Your Sphere of Influence

Your sphere of influence is broader than your sphere of acquaintance.

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Life’s Greatest Hindrances are its Greatest Teachers

More and more I find that what I used to consider my greatest hindrances were, in fact, actually my greatest teachers. I used to believe that all my troubles were attributable to lack of finances and consequently, thought all of them could be solved by a surplus. I considered all the disadvantages and often almost totally overlooked the great trust and creativity I was developing and gaining over the years. I used to overlook what God was placing right before my eyes. Troubled with how things were going to work out—crippled by fear that they wouldn’t, days were difficult and

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Jumping Off The High Dive

Now, many decades ago, I climbed the steep steps up to the high dive at our local community pool in Southern California where I was raised. I’d been swimming most all my life (it was a given that most all the homes had a swimming pool) and from a young age I was able to dive and do back flips, etc., off the diving board. I wasn’t afraid of the water or the depth of pools. But the high dive was daunting. So high. I don’t recall how long it took me to muster the courage to mount those steps

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Super Simple Simplifying Checklist

A year ago I embarked on a journey to declutter our home — I wrote about that in several posts, Intentional DeCluttering, Tidying: You’re Still You!, and a couple more, beginning with, Eliminating Clutter. As I mentioned then, I hadn’t heard of Marie Kondo until after I’d begun the arduous project. My family “introduced” me to her program and teased me a bit about getting rid of everything that didn’t spark joy. The idea totally resonated with me and propelled me to keep working at it. And it still does in many ways.

In the decluttering process I had to

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Hindsight Isn’t 20/20

You’ve heard the saying — probably have said it yourself from time to time: “Hindsight’s 20/20!” When looking back on what you did, what you shouldn’t have done, or what you’re sure you ought to have done, could have done, would have done… you may have reasoned a better outcome with your 20/20 hindsight vision. But it’s a lie. Hindsight isn’t 20/20.

Hindsight isn’t 20/20 bcz we don’t know what God knows. You don’t know if you would have had a perfect outcome had you been able to exercise your now perfect 20/20 hindsight bcz you couldn’t have known all

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Thanks Giving Is Here

Thanksgiving is here, I heard someone exclaim. And one might immediately wonder how it came so quickly again this year. I mull this over (and, yes, I do marvel that another Thanksgiving is already upon us), I think: Is Thanks-giving here? I mean… here, here. Here in my heart, here in my life, here in my thoughts and in my words.

I stop and take a mental inventory of my days of late. How thankful have I been–or have I displayed thankfulness at all? Is thanks g-i-v-i-n-g a characteristic plainly obvious in my life? Is thanks giving part

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Drawing a blank

Those shots are blanks. They roar at us or past us, but they’re blanks. God’s mercies are new every morning and His faithfulness is above the heavens. I may feel wounded by the shots of those blanks, but I mustn’t think they’ll destroy me — I must take those thoughts captive to the obedience of Christ.

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You can’t afford to not pay attention.

I know. The last entry I wrote was 7 months ago. Hounded by voices that tell me I’ve lost mine, by regrets that prevent me moving forward, and various time/emotional demands that drain creativity, I come to my blog and draw a blank — or am shot with one.

But… again, here I am. I love to write. I love this platform. I love the connections it’s given me through the years. And I love that the Lord has given me a whole bunch more time and has absolutely dumped His great mercy and grace over me every day of

Continue reading You can’t afford to not pay attention.