Friday, May 21, 2010

Lucky the Dog...

I just wept through a story of a woman and her dog, Lucky.  It was posted by Diane of Vintage Tickled Pink.  I think it will touch you even if you are not a "dog person"...  To read it, go here:

I have a busy afternoon, so I will leave you with this quote:  

There are people who put their dreams in a little box and say, 'Yes, I've got dreams, of course I've got dreams.' Then they put the box away and bring it out once in awhile to look in it, and yep, they're still there. These are great dreams, but they never even get out of the box. It takes an uncommon amount of guts to put your dreams on the line, to hold them up and say, 'How good or how bad am I?' That's where courage comes in...     
~ Erma Louise Bombeck

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Be Still...

I've been watching a video called, "Be Still" and it really has some good thoughts.  Here's the Netflix description:

In an age in which multitasking has become second nature, the idea of being "still" almost seems luxurious. Yet achieving stillness through Christian prayer is a spiritually rewarding practice that can change your life forever. In this inspirational program narrated by actor Judge Reinhold and co-directed by his wife, Amy, noted authors, ministers and educators discuss the techniques of contemplative prayer.

I have been thinking a lot about the over-stimulation of our everyday lives. Cell phones and computers are wonderful.  I couldn't imagine doing without either, it's just that I realized how much they can take over.  Responding to phone calls, replying to emails, updating our Facebook, our Blogs, our YouTube pages, watching our favorite programs... all good things if taken in moderation. 

My heart has been crying out for silence... for a time of stillness in my day.  I love the idea of contemplative prayer.  Setting aside a quiet time to enter into God's presence, and then, just listen... wait on Him with no requests, no expectations;  making it a time of opening yourself to what He might say to you. 

Meditation has been around in many religions and cultures for centuries.  As a Christian, I find that applying the concept to my prayer life enhances it. 

I intend to make this part of my daily routine.  I need the stillness, the release of stress, the bit of quiet solitude in the midst of a noisy world.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Happy 18th Birthday to my Lucky 13!

I posted a "mother" poem yesterday.  Today, I am celebrating my baby's 18th birthday.  He is no baby... actually, never really was after about the age of two.  He has always seemed "tuned in to the world around him.  He had those eyes... brown, dark, people said "He looks at you like an old soul" and, he did. Our Lucky 13... EJ, he learned so easily, reading when he was barely 4 years old. Well, that's when he told me he could read!  I didn't believe him and picked up a book.  "Read this then" I said.  He read it all, smoothly and clearly, and every other page I picked out.  I was stunned!  

 My little Lucky 13 and I... a long time ago

We had always read to him, even his big brother had pointed out words to him.  Sometime before the day he told me he could read, he had drawn a cat on their little blackboard and spelled "cat".  When he showed it to me, I asked how he knew how to spell it... "My brain told me" he replied.  

Even without those things, our youngest is special to his family and his friends.  He's weathered a lot of loss, illness, and more in his 18 years.  He keeps those things to himself.  I believe he has an inner strength that he doesn't even fully realize yet.  

Here he is fishing with his older brother and Grandpa

He has so much creativity.  He has a wonderful, unique sense of humor.  He has a talent for music.  I always loved hearing him play his Cello.  He doesn't play as often, but still loves music.

I know folks get weary of hearing people brag on their children, so please indulge me today... this wonderful day, as I look back over the years.  If my own PC wasn't down today, I'd be posting a lot of pictures.  I'm using EJ's PC, and there very few photos on it yet.  Anyway, I want to say how blessed I am.  I prayed for children years ago, after being told I might never have them.  God gave me two wonderful sons, different and yet, so alike.

My family has been blessed by having our Lucky 13 in our lives.  God knew we needed this child... who is now a man, in our lives.  Happy Birthday son!  Our "Lucky 13"!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010


A friend sent this to me this past week.  It is beautiful.  Whether you are  a mother or a daughter... whether you are blessed to still have your mother around, or if she has passed on, I think it will touch you.

Author Unknown
The young mother set her foot on the path of life. 
"Is this the long way?" she asked. 
And the guide said: 
"Yes, and the way is hard
And you will be old before you reach the end of it.. 
But the end will be better than the beginning."

But the young mother was happy,
and she would not believe that anything 
could be better than these years
So she played with her children, 
and gathered flowers for them along the way, 
and bathed them in the clear streams; 
and the sun shone on them, 
and the young Mother cried,
"Nothing will ever be lovelier than this."

Then the night came, and the storm, 
and the path was dark, 
and the children shook with fear and cold,
and the mother
drew them close
and covered them with her mantle,
and the children said,
"Mother, we are not afraid,
for you are near, and no harm can come."

And the morning came, and there was a hill ahead,
the children climbed and grew weary,
and the mother was weary.
But at all times she said to the children,
A little patience and we are

So the children climbed, 
and when they reached the top they said,  
"Mother, we would not have done it without you." 
And the mother, when she lay down at night 
looked up at the stars and said, 
"This is a better day than the last, for my children 
have learned fortitude in the face of hardness.
 Yesterday I gave them courage.
Today, I've given them strength."

And the next day came strange clouds 
which darkened the earth, 
clouds of war and hate and evil,
and the children groped
and stumbled, 
and the mother said:  
"Look up. Lift your eyes to the light."
  And the children looked
and saw above the clouds an everlasting glory, 
and it guided them beyond the
darkness. And that night the Mother said,
"This is the best day of all, for
I have shown my children God."

And the days went on,
and the weeks and the months and

the years, and the mother grew old;
And she was little and bent.
But her children were tall and strong,
and walked with

And when the way was rough, 

they lifted her,
for she was as light as a feather;
and at last they came to a hill,

and beyond they could see a shining road
and golden gates flung wide.
mother said,  
"I have reached the end of my journey.
And now I know 

the end is better than the beginning, 
for my children can walk alone, 
and their children after them."

And the children said, 
"You will always walk with us, Mother, 
even when you have gone through the gates."

And they stood and watched her 
as she went on alone,
and the gates
closed after her. 
And they said:
"We cannot see her but she is with us still.
A Mother like ours is more than a memory.
is a living presence."

Your Mother is always with you....
She's the whisper
of the leaves 
as you walk down the street;
she's the smell of bleach
 in your freshly laundered socks;
she's the cool hand
on your brow 
when you're not well. 

Your Mother lives inside your laughter.
And she's crystallized in every tear drop.

She's the place you came from, 
your first home; and she's the map you follow 
with every step you take.
She's your first love
and your first heartbreak,
and nothing on earth can
separate you.
Not time, not space... not even death.

My favorite part is the last.  I feel my mom near in times of laughter and tears.  It's all part of the gifts that she instilled in me.  She lived life fully, in good times and in bad.  She faced it with courage, and with her unique sense of humor.  I was blessed to be her daughter.  I hope each of you have been blessed in life with a loving mother.

Images provided by Dawn of The Feathered Nest.  She is such a generous lady!  Please take some time to visit her beautiful blog.  If you are new here, you just click on the highlighted name of her blog and it will take you there.

Have a blessed day!
Nita Jo

Friday, May 7, 2010

Mother's Day Tea

Yesterday, I had the best afternoon I've had in a while.  The Assisted Living Home, where my Grandma Martha lives, hosted a Mother's Day Tea.

My aunt, my sister and I went to the tea.  That is my aunt in the pictures with Grandma.  The staff had decked out all the ladies in their nicer clothes and red hats!  They all looked so cute! 

The staff had also booked a Sweet Adeline's Group who performed several songs for all of us.  The music was beautiful and added such a nice touch to the event.

Grandma was having a very good day.  She talked a little with us, smiled, laughed, and seemed to really enjoy herself.  There were moments when it took a little coaxing to get a response from her, but it was worth every minute.  Grandma was definitely looking healthier, and talking more, than the last time I went to see her!  It was wonderful! 

One sad note... the lady that sat to my right is one I've seen often.  She is usually seated at the same dining table as Grandma.  My sis nudged me today and pointed out that she was crying.  This was toward the end, when the staff was clearing the tables.  I reached over and took hold of her arm.  "Are you ok?" I asked.  She started talking and I couldn't understand what she was saying, except for the last sentence... "They didn't come.  They didn't come."  It broke my heart that in a rare lucid moment, she knew that no family had come to sit with her.  I talked with her a bit... told her how pretty she looked in her red hat.  She soon calmed down and smiled.   I thought of all the mothers and grandmothers in these centers who have nobody who comes.  Maybe their family lives far away, maybe they are the last of their family.  It makes me so grateful that my Grandma has people who take time to visit her... family, friends, and Pastors.

My Grandma raised my sister and I.  She always calls us her girls... cause we were the little girls she raised late in life.  My aunt is her only daughter, and she's always been so proud of her.  We were often told stories about our aunt as we were growing up.  I doubt if my aunt knows how much her mom bragged about her to us, and to others.  There's something special in the way a mother loves her children.  It's like no other love in her life.  So special, so unique, and so beautiful!

As we approach Mother's Day, I wish each of you a day of wonderful memories... whether you're making them with your children or remembering the ones you made with your mothers and your grandmothers!  Enjoy each moment you have with them!

One More Fun Giveaway!

Michelle of Michelle Palmer's Petals and Palettes is giving away one of her pen and ink drawings.  She does them on vintage linens and they are beautiful.

To Enter:  Go to Petals and Palettes Giveaway.  The drawing will be held on Mother's Day. 

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

A Giveaway... and an MS Update...

I wanted to share another wonderful giveaway.  Over at My Vintage Studio you can sign up to win the following items:
A large bunch of vintage goodies, including plate, cup, handkerchiefs, lace, earrings, greeting cards, travel post cards... 

You have until May 15th to enter.  Winner will be announced May 16th!  All you do is visit My Vintage Studio's Shabby Giveaway Post and leave a comment to enter!  When you're done, take a few minutes to visit her other posts.  There are many free images for you to use, and this is just a wonderful blog to see!

Moving on...  An MS (multiple sclerosis) Update.

My goal for poetry posting went by the wayside.  I was having more vision problems, and then last Friday I woke up before 6 am and knew something just wasn't right.  I was shivering, my teeth chattering, as I tried to get up my entire body started shaking.  I was having some type of seizure.  I couldn't get up, and didn't want to try to call out because I thought my husband had already left for work.  I didn't want to freak out my son, so I thought I could "ride it out" and just see.  Thank the Lord my husband came down the hall about 10 minutes later.  He stayed with me until it passed about 30 minutes later.  I felt like I'd run a race, and I haven't done that in many years.  I told him not to call 911 while it was happening.  He did get my neurologist's nurse on the phone.  She called later and said the doctor's instructions were to discontinue one medication, but continue all others.  Also, to take me to the hospital if it happened again or I did not improve. 

My sweet husband stayed home with me Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.  I was feeling better by Saturday evening.  We had a "Lost" marathon (Season 1 since he has never watched... I am a huge fan), he waited on me.  Made me tomato soup and grilled cheese which I love.  Later he ordered Chinese food!  He definitely went the extra mile, even missing his car show and going to see Red Green perform on Saturday night!  I told him to go, but he said it was more important to make sure I was ok.  So sweet.

I am so much better now.  The new medication is controlling my pain.  I feel like I'm on the right treatment!  Also, my eye glasses came in.  I'm now adjusting to Progressive Lenses... you who have them know about the difficulties involved.  They told me to give it a good three weeks.  If I don't adjust by them, they can switch me to the old style bi-focals.  Lol!  I'm growing old without much grace!

Anyway, I am already adjusting.  I have no problem with dizziness or driving.  I just can't get used to reading the computer, books, etc., but it's coming along.

I'm glad to be back among you!  I may not get a lot of blog reading done for a bit, but I'm enjoying the little bit I have been doing today!

Nita Jo