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I feel that I am cherish. Then I also wanted to think about the things that I cherish. For example, I think family is at the tippy-top of that list. I relish the times I can be home and with those people. They are my everything.

I rarely use the word “cherish” for some reason. To me, it means something that I hold VERY close and dear to me. Something that can not be replaced.  A very special thing. And, that’s my family.  They can’t be replaced. They are amazing.  I don’t treat them with kid-gloves or anything, we have our ups and downs, but my family is what I truly cherish.  I hold them close – literally and figuratively.

I also know they cherish me.  We cherish one another. Tonight, we have a lot of family planned. I am going to mention this word, and see how THEY define it. See what they cherish. I can learn so much from those people, it’s unreal.

I know I need to also cherish every day. I am guilty of NOT doing that. I forget. How horrible is that?  Things get in the way and I forget to CHERISH my day – my life – my existence. Unreal.  I am thankful and grateful – that I can do. But to really cherish- to hold my day close to my heart and hug it. That is something I  need to work on.

Without my day, my life – I have nothing.  Thank you God for this day, this life, and my family. I promise to hold it all dear to me. In your name I pray!


It’s time for me to have a break.  A serious break. that’s the beauty of education. Just as you’re ready to go mad – a break comes around. Mark and I are forever grateful for these breaks.  Right now, things have been mighty stressful at work. And we are going to relish this break more than  you can ever know.

With things being crazy, and even a bit scary at work, we haven’t told our families. The wee one hears snippets now and then, but nothing big. My mother would FREAK OUT. So, it’s best not to stress her out. My brother knows a little bit. He’s compassionate and understanding. My father knows nothing – that’s my choice.  So, Mark and I keep it to ourselves. We don’t even discuss it with co-workers – too risky.  The walls have ears if you know what I mean… And, we really don’t have any friends we discuss this stuff with, so we just deal with it amongst ourselves and count down the days till break.

Because of all this  – my mind is elsewhere. I’m easily distracted, and every now and then I turn a bit negative.

And this is not good.  So, I go play on pinterest and daydream…


Five Minute Friday

Today’s word is Quiet

A few years ago I got a “Shhh” tattoo on my left index finger. It was so I could shush the wee one without making a noise. It eventually evolved into me just showing her that finger. I am a college teacher. My students obviously see my tattoos. They notice my hands a lot – I teach, I talk with my hands. And, I find that I use it with them as well. I don’t have to embarrass anyone, I just flash my tatt to them. They get the hint. In fact, most people around don’t even know I just told someone to “be quiet”.

I still have to use it with the wee one – she’s 11 now, but we all need to be reminded to be quiet once in a while. Her friends know about it too- I can just stick my finger in the room, and they’ll quiet down.

But, who tells me to shush? No one really. I guess that’s my job. This is the  season where I really need to focus and be quiet more. I do a quiet time Bible study/devotion reading about 4 or 5 times a week. This is my quiet time. I also attend church 2 times a week. I pray. Daily. Continually. I read thought-provoking Christian literature. I have quiet time. But, I am henceforth resolving to focus my quiet time even MORE. I need to be aware of my quietness and my stillness.

Oh, and I have a moustache tattoo on my other finger. I like to balance the serious with the fun.  I mean, we can’t be quiet all the time, right?


making my home a haven

I am!  I did not purchase a candle. I have so many candles that need to be used. So, I grabbed one and lit it.  I generally light when we’re all home – after school and before dinner.  Then I say;

Dear Lord, bless my family,

keep them happy, healthy

and at peace.

I say it all night long whenever I notice the candle. And, I’m mindful to make it count – I don’t want to just SAY the words, I want them to be heart-felt.

This has been a super thing for me to do.  No one in the home knows I’m doing it. It’s just a little gesture I can do to bless my family.

candle, candle in glass

candle, candle in glass (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

giving thanks

I’m over my tantrum from yesterday.  Talking it over with Mark helped validate my feelings and calmed me.  See, I told you he has an amazing effect on me!

We are doing gratitude journals as a family. We gather in her bedroom before bed and write in our journals and then share.  She is getting the hang of it. At first, she was writing the same thing over and over. It was terribly sweet, but she just wasn’t thinking deep enough.  But I think she’s got it now.  It’s been a real joy for us.  Last night Mark gave me the sweetest compliment ever. It really validated me and what I do.  That’s just one of the blessings of giving thanks.


So, I need to vent a little bit. I’ve said it before, but we live FAR from our families. No one is near us – seriously.  And, we happen to live in a smaller town where everyone is related to everyone else. Consequently – we have no family events to attend over the holidays. And, people seem to think that since we don’t have family around that they just assume we do NOTHING. A co-worker just told us that we could do the extra work because we don’t have family events coming up and she does. She won’t have time, but she knows that since we don’t have family around we would be able to do the extra work load. And, this is NOT the first time this has happened. This happens almost every year. Someone says things like, “Well, you can probably work on that since you won’t have family in town. I can’t because my wife’s family will be here one weekend, then the next weekend we are hosting the party at our house for my family.”  Seriously!?! I get so frustrated hearing that. It’s not fair. And then it seems like our bosses always agree, “Well, since Joe has all these family activities it only seems logical you can do the extra work. ”

tired of it!




So, I remember when I was little and the TV mini-series, Roots was on. It was a HUGE deal. I didn’t get it.  My parents watched it. Things around our house stopped during those nights. My brother and I were “shushed” a lot!  It was just a TV show that bored me.  It wasn’t funny. I like sit-coms. This was NOT a sit-com. So, I didn’t pay attention.

In fact, I really didn’t pay attention to my roots at all growing up. I kind of just didn’t think about it. To me, now, the word “roots” symbolizes family. See, we lived far away from our family. Like four states away. We hardly ever saw anyone. And guess what – it’s kind of the same thing now.  Hubby and I live at least 4 hours away from any sense of family.  And then it’s only my brother and his little boy. We are spread around the country. So, I instill in my little girl the importance of family – the right here-right-now kind of family. The kind that matters!  We talk about family in our house all the time. We know how important this bond is.

We are sad that we can’t be around more family – and sometimes I get a little jealous. But, we must establish our own roots with just the three of us. With a big change looming, our roots are going to be even more important than ever before.

Last night we started our gratitude journals for the  month of November. The wee one wrote about family.

This is what having roots means to me. A love between us that anchors us to each other.

calm by my husband

(stumpy) christ of the ozarks

There are some pretty intense things going on at work. That means it’s intense for us. We work really hard to keep it all out of our home. We DO talk about it – it’s just not something we talk out loud in front of the wee one.

I am nervous about it.

The hubby isn’t.  I don’t know how he does it. But, he is headstrong and focused. I get stressed when he starts talking about all of it.  He’s seen this pattern, and consequently, he’s pulled back on it. Not that it’s a bad thing – I mean, who wants to sit around and talk about work all night long?  We want to have family time!

But, I am utterly calmed by him. With anything. Not just this. But, this is the pattern.  I stress. I go to him. He assures me.  Relief.  I know I’m supposed to put my faith in God and know that Christ will take care of everything. But, seriously, isn’t it normal to at least FEEL something. I mean, if we’re nervous or anxious, I think that’s ok. We can still KNOW that God is in control.  It’s like a roller coaster, right?  I can SEE the twists and turns. I know I am safe in my harness, but I get a bit nervous going up that first big hill, right? Don’t we all?  I mean, it’s normal. I sometimes feel guilty for feeling nervous. I don’t want it to mean that I distrust God or His will. Because I DO trust him. I totally KNOW that things will be fine. I really do. But, I still get an upset tummy thinking about all of it.   Now, I am ultimately calmed by God.  Not just my husband. But, in the moment that we are having a serious discussion, I sometimes get stressed and need for Mark to reach over, hold my hand, and look at me with those eyes of his, and say, “It’s going to be ok. I’ll take of you.”  In my private moment I rely on God to do this.

I am thankful to have such an amazing husband in my life. I am thankful that God still smiles down on me. I am nervous. But, I’m calmed.

Making My Home a Haven

I accept!

I can do this. It’s not a crazy load of work or anything. And, I think I pretty much do these things already. But the difference is that I don’t do them with INTENTION in Christ. I just do it. Now, I will be more mindful of my actions. I can’t wait.

This is my favorite time of year anyway.

disappointed by “friends”

I had something occur within the last week that saddened me. Actions by some people I call “friends”. I’m not going in to the logistics of it all, but my friends behaved in a manner that shocked me. Nonetheless, it made me look at some things.

First off, I started to look online for advice/reasons/ or something. I found a few things that helped me. One site talked about putting your hope in OTHERS rather than putting your hope in God. For me, I was really expecting my friends to behave a certain a way. When they didn’t, I was disappointed. I can’t control my friends or their behaviors. I just need to put my faith in God and not others. OTHERS won’t bring me happiness, only God can. He never disappoints.  Not that I need to EXPECT disappointment from others, but I need to know that I can’t assume people will behave the way I think they would behave.

And, it’s also made me re-think my relationships with these women.  I thought they would help me in the same way I’ve helped them.  I was wrong. So, they obviously aren’t the type of people I thought they were. They were given plenty of opportunities, so I know scheduling wasn’t an issue. I am not going to confront them. I will continue being friends with them, but I know better what I CAN and CAN NOT count on them for.