May 6, 2005 ” …There’s a Florida woman who lost 170 pounds on her personally designed “Backwards Diet.” She ate/eats for breakfast what one would have for dinner and for dinner what would typically be eaten at breakfast in addition to cutting out sugar (me: weep), caffeine (me: gasp!) and soda (me: sniff). Now, I don’t know how she’s done this and maintained it for five years—or her stated clothing size, for that matter — a size 1 (!?!?) — but it’s really quite impressive. But I was imagining what sort of special date she’d enjoy some evening… Hmmm, oatmeal with—hmmm, raisins just for fun? I saw the diet on another page and thought one of the comments was too funny! The person wrote: ‘Why not skip the shredded wheat and eat a wicker chair, same texture, same flavor, stays crispy longer in milk. When you finish since you have no place left to sit down you have to walk around, it’s the South Beach Furniture Diet.’ “
May 5, 2005 “…I’ve lately thought this would be a very cool birth-date: 05-05-05. I love to serve Mexican food on this day (well—I’d love to serve it every single day, really!) to commemorate Cinco de Mayo…. ”
” A forklift just drove slowly down the lane. My little boys were on the sofa looking out the front window and calling out: “It’s a forklift, It’s a forklift! What is he coming down the lane for Mama?” I told them he’s probably coming here… to help them clean their bedroom. Well… he passed by and went on down to the neighbor’s down the lane. Sorry boys, no help for your mess chores today. ”
May 3, 2005 …Whew… so *that* happened! After an early morning appointment, I spotted Wes and Kathryn returning home. Down the lane and I could see Wes flashing me a downcast look… as Kathryn drove the van and rounded the house, I went to the back porch to wait for them on the back steps. Wes hopped out, of the passenger side and walked around the back of the van ( head down and shaking his head, no) to open the door for Kathryn. She got out… looked disheartened as she made her way to the steps, Wes right behind her. I exclaimed that it would all work out fine—I mean, Thomas Edison sure knew a lot more about how a light-bulb *wouldn’t* work than how one would work! I encouraged her that I’d help her and she’d do fine the next time! She agreed—unenthusiastically, and then mustered that she did get something at the department of licensing, though. Then she reached down and produced a new driver’s license. O, what a wonderful thing for her! And yes… I told them they were both rascals for their little hoax. So… another driver.
the best medicine
May 2, 2005 “…in reality, the people I love the most are here and it really is(!) so good to be home! — but it was a GREAT retreat and all the things (and more!) that a retreat oughtta be!
The speaker was great —as always— and it was truly a joy to visit again with women I’d met a few years ago when I had the honour and privilege to be the retreat speaker there. O, what a blessing to be with old friends! What a precious gift: old friends. Margaret (our friend & retreat speaker) continues to grow in grace and mature in her walk with the LORD and remains strong and steady in faith. I admired her from the moment I met her and through the years as my Bible study leader, teacher, mentor and friend. She continues to inspire me to press on with the LORD and reminded me that nothing is too hard for the LORD. We talked for hours Saturday afternoon—what a blessing to have her for a treasured friend.
From the moment we arrived at the magnificent retreat campground it was an immeasurable lingering blessing (and hasn’t stopped being one). I do not “attend” the church that hosted the retreat and yet I was as warmly welcomed as the others were and enjoyed the blessing of time spent with them—truly, sisters in Christ—something that transcends time and space. Many of the women have been friends of mine for over eighteen years. We had great teaching times, great times of singing, good food and lots of walking. And while there were lots of tears, the laughter rivaled any time of laughter we ever had previous to now. I think by Sunday afternoon my cheeks were hurting from laughing so much. I finally realized how sweet it is to get old and have the blessing of history (and hindsight) with friends. Many of us gathered and talked and laughed until very late (or early morning) each night. It was truly a retreat. I needed treatment or the re-treatment these friends give. It was a place to spend time with women who obviously adore one another through thick and thin and… yes, many of us have been thick and thin together—some of us thicker and some of them thinner. ;o)
I know a bit more of why we love to go to retreat. We love it for all the benefits of being soaked in God’s Word and steeped in prayer and bathed in song and filled with laughter and then we long for it again the next year because we know we love and are loved there… it’s a sweet treat, a treatment—a retreat and re-treatment. It was one of the sweetest times I’ve ever spent in my life and I’ll always love that I was able to experience the time with them.
Retreat; re·treat (rĭ-trēt‘)
- The act or process of withdrawing, especially from something
hazardous, formidable, or unpleasant.
- The process of going backward or receding from a position or
- A place affording peace, quiet, privacy, or security.
- A period of seclusion, retirement, or solitude.
- A period of group withdrawal for prayer, meditation, or study:
a religious retreat.
- Withdrawal of a military force from a dangerous position or from an enemy attack.
Because of Jesus I am so grateful, because of my whole family and these precious friends I am so blessed — and if I never had anything else — I’d still be the richest woman on earth. I’ll always be grateful for those sweet old friends. And if that wasn’t enough… when I returned home, Wes came to pick me up and take me where the family was meeting with our home-church and it was again a sweet time of fellowship with new dear friends. And then… as if that weren’t enough, a couple of old friends dropped by this morning (one who was part of that “old” group but wasn’t at the retreat) and we caught up on all the latest happenings in our families. I don’t know if I’ve reached the saturation point, but I’m sure all filled up with joy!”