Thursday, February 28, 2013

Darkness Can Not Overcome the Light

I want to tell you about a very cool app I have on my smart phone. My sister, Tina, told me about it. It is called Bible.Is and it is really worth your time... plus, it is FREE. It is the Bible online. I know there are many of them. This one, though, will read to you! How cool is that? To get it, just go to Bible.Is and set it up for your computer. And, as I said, they also have apps for smart phones, etc. It's pretty nice. You can listen in your car, on a walk, or wherever.

When I was on Bible.Is today I was reading from the book of John. You know how sometimes a verse, maybe one you've read a lot before, really hits you? Well, the one that hit me this time was John 1:5, "The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness has not overcome it." The light is Jesus.

Do you ever just get so distraught by stories on the news? Maybe it is sadness, tragedy or horror that you deal with in your own life that makes you distraught. I was listening yesterday to some information about human trafficking. Such despair! It is just so hard to believe that is going on in this day and age and to so many people! There is so much darkness in this world! I think that is why that verse jumped out at me. What a relief to know, the darkness can not overcome the LIGHT!  No matter what, we have that to hold on to. No matter how bad things are, we know that evil does not, can not, will not win in the end.




Wednesday, February 27, 2013

New Listings!

Maria put up a bunch of new listings at Wyoming Rose Boutique. We hope you will check them out. If you'd like we'd love you to pin any on Pinterest, Facebook or Twitter.





Monday, February 25, 2013

In His Care

I recently received word of someone we know who's child has been diagnosed with a brain tumor. I can only imagine the terror that diagnosis brought. We pray for her complete healing!

There is nothing worse than watching your own child suffer. I am convinced of that. Nothing. Our children are all fine but we have gone through some scary times when they were younger. Ben had severe asthma attacks that often landed him in the hospital. They often had a hard time starting his IV, requiring stick after stick after stick. One time he'd been poked by nearly every nurse in the hospital and they finally called an anesthesiologist from home who was able to get it going. Ben cried so long and so hard he finally fell asleep, not even waking up when they continued to poke him. There were times when I feared his little body would not be able to overcome his asthma, when I worried over each difficult breath. There were times we didn't know if we'd get to keep him. 

When Maria was in kindergarten, she had to have an emergency appendectomy. Afterward, instead of getting better, she got more and more weak and more and more sick. They didn't know what was wrong with her for several days. One day, when Mike was in the room with her, I went down to another floor to a bathroom. It was there that I fell apart. I sobbed out loud. I was so afraid that we were losing our little girl. I could see her fading away. I was so frightened! All I could do was try to cheer her and to pray fervently for her.

Eventually, they discovered that Maria had an intestinal blockage. They were able to help her and the light within her brightened. Our spunky little girl returned to us and we got to enjoy the rest of her childhood, and still now she brings a lot of joy to our lives.

Sam has not been through any life-threatening health crisis. That hasn't stopped me from worrying about his safety, though. Recently he was on an out of town road trip. I knew when he expected to return and when that hour passed, I could feel myself creeping to the edge of panic. I knew I was likely over-reacting but horrible visions kept creeping into my mind. Finally, I prayed. That didn't immediately erase my fear but it helped. Sometimes my faith is so weak.

We know from the Bible that Jesus cared for the children very tenderly. We read stories where he healed children. He never wants them to suffer. But, because we live in a world where we are allowed free choice, and humans don't always make good choices, we've inherited a world that is imperfect. We live in world where evil exists as well. That is the world we pass on to our children.

There is good news, though. Yes, we live with evil around and available at all times. However, as children of God, we are under his protection. Does that mean we don't suffer the maladies of this world? Nope. It does mean that we can bring our requests to the Almighty One. We know that our requests are heard. We know that we will all be healed, in time. Sometimes that healing happens here, in this world. Sometimes, though, healing means our loved ones get to get out of this messy world and go directly to God... to the arms of Jesus. Thank God that their lives do not end here!

I feel that we don't really see the whole picture from our point of view. That is where we've got to lean on our faith; we've got to trust in God's wisdom. I think it is ok, to pray my wishes to God. I will continue to tell him that I want my children and all my other loved ones to live long, healthy and happy lives. I hope that, with the gift of faith, I can continue to believe that God will protect my loved ones and keep them in His care, here and later in heaven. 








Sunday, February 24, 2013

Redeemed

Definition of REDEEM (From Merriam Webster)

1
a : to buy back : repurchase
b : to get or win back
2
: to free from what distresses or harms: as
a : to free from captivity by payment of ransom
b : to extricate from or help to overcome something detrimental
c : to release from blame or debt : clear
d : to free from the consequences of sin
3
: to change for the better : reform
4
(click title to hear song)
from the album Love Come To Life
Big Daddy Weave

 image courtesy of bejim at FreeDigitalPhotos.net


Seems like all I could see was the struggle
Haunted by ghosts that lived in my past
Bound up in shackles of all my failures
Wondering how long is this gonna last
Then You look at this prisoner and say to me 
“Son, stop fighting a fight that's already been won”

(Chorus)
I am redeemed
You set me free
So I'll shake off theses heavy chains
And wipe away every stain 
Now I'm not who I used to be
I am redeemed
I am redeemed

All my life I have been called unworthy
Named by the voice of my shame and regret
But when I hear You whisper, “Child lift up your head”
I remember oh God, You're not done with me yet

Chorus

I don't have to be 
The old man inside of me
'Cause his day is long dead and gone
Because I've got a new name
A new life I'm not the same
And a hope that will carry me home

Saturday, February 23, 2013

A Vacation From Our Stuff

(hotel toiletries, neatly organized)

This past week Mike and I have spent a lot of time in motels and hotels. Today it is time to go home. While I love being home, I have to say that I also enjoy hotel life, at least for awhile. I think that what I love most is that we don't have much "stuff" at a hotel. I once read that the real reason people go on vacations is to get away from their "stuff". It was funny but there just may be some truth to it.

The longer we live, the more stuff we accumulate. The more stuff we accumulate, the harder it is to be organized. The harder it is to clean as well!

I am a very organized person... in theory. I like to organize things. I like to live in an organized environment. I value organization.

The truth is, I am an organized person living a disorganized life. I'm not sure when that happened but I'm ready to be over it now. I think Pinterest has been inspiring me with cool ideas...things I can organize using just empty toilet paper rolls! 
Are you becoming over run by your stuff and feeling organizationally challenged as well? If so, here are a few blogs I found that might be helpful.  Happy organizing!



Friday, February 22, 2013

Everything You Never Wanted to Know About Cicadas

Most days I have several ideas in my head of things I want to write about. Today was not one of those days. When that happens, I start going through photos I have taken to see if that sparks any ideas. Well, sure enough, today it did just that. I came upon a photo that I took in Arizona last month. I thought it turned out pretty well and I have just been waiting to use it.


Do you know what that it? It is an empty cicada shell. (Click here to see a whole cicada.) Do you call them shells? Maybe not. I realized that I don't know all that much about cicadas. Our 9 years in New Mexico taught me that they can be very, very noisy...almost deafening sometimes in the summer evenings. That's about all I knew so in order to find a reason to post this photograph, I decided to research cicadas.

Cicadas make their noise by vibrating membranes on their abdomens. They can make different sounds, some for attracting mates or for sounding an alarm. It is the males that make all the racket. (I am still talking about cicadas but I don't blame you for being confused.)

Some species show up every year while others show up only every several years. There are thousands of species of cicadas. When they are hatched, they dig underground burrows and live by sucking plant roots. Isn't that weird? Some stay there for years, emerging as an adult cicada. Sometimes they appear in swarms and can cause plague-like destruction of plants.

I could go on but for but I think now you already know more than you ever wanted to know about Cicadas.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Giraffe Underwear Update!

Before you read today's post, please go here to read a previous post. If you don't, the rest of this post won't make much sense. What I have to tell you is just so exciting!

So, did you read it? Are you fully informed about my tragic childhood without my giraffe underwear? Now that you've read it, you can feel my joy over what I am about to share.

Yesterday, I was at Walmart, and I stopped dead in my tracks when I saw this:


No, your eyes do not deceive you. Those are real, honest-to-goodness, giraffe panties! They are nothing like the ones I lost out on when I was 6, but they are even cooler! They came in a package of 3 panties, but the other 2 are not giraffes. For a second I actually considered wearing the other 2 pairs first and saving the giraffe ones for last. Apparently that save-the-best-for-last thing is an integral part of my thinking. I will tell you, though, that I overcame that. I'm not going to make that same foolish mistake twice! I am wearing my giraffe underwear and I am feeling quite wonderful about them. I think it will be a good day.

Here's hoping that you all have a giraffe underwear kind of day as well!

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Hallway Carpet

Have you thought about hallway carpets at hotels? Have you noticed, even at real nice hotels, that they have wild carpets in their hallways? Mike & I were recently at this Holiday Inn and I found myself pondering some of life's deep questions such as this. I would never ever consider that kind of carpet for my own home, but I kind of like it at a hotel. The more I thought about it, the smarter I thought it was. You could spill practically anything on such a carpet and no one would ever know.


So, are you thinking to yourself, "I can't believe she is posting about such a dumb subject! Is she really talking about hotel hallway carpets?" Well, sorry, but sometimes it is hard to come up with fascinating topics on a daily basis. I will try harder tomorrow... maybe.

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

The Prince of the Family

I guess you could say that I married a prince. Well, I kind of did. He is called "The Prince of the Family." Hmmmm....now that I think about it, I'm not sure anyone calls him that but he himself. Nevertheless, he's a prince.

Mike has no brothers and two sisters. Mike was the baby by 6 years. He grew up enjoying the adoration of his loving sisters and somewhere along the way he became known as The Prince of the Family. It is possible that title was only known to him, but I do know his sisters adore him. Well, really, who wouldn't? Right?

Mike takes his princely duties very seriously. Really, if you were going to need a brother, he'd be a great choice. There is not much he wouldn't do for his sisters. He will travel far and wide to be by their side if they need him. He's the same toward his mom. Actually, I think they should honor her by calling her the Queen Mum but they refer to her as "The Big M"... same thing I guess.

Anyway, I woke up this morning thinking about what a loyal man he is toward his family.  I have seen him act very courageously to help a family member. He has the strength of character that all princes should have. 

Mike's princeliness  has served me well for nearly 35 years also. Yep, I married a prince. He often puts his needs behind those of his family, myself included. I am so grateful to be married to this particular prince, but I'd better stop this post now, before his head gets to big for his princely crown.




Monday, February 18, 2013

Equip Yourselves

I was listening to KLOVE recently. They were interviewing Jason Gray and he said something that kind of caught my attention. He was talking about the trials we all endure, not the same trials but we all have difficulties and problems in our lives. He commented that some of the worst things the devil throws at us can be turned around to best equip us for ministry to others.

Jason Gray went on to talk about some of the misery people endure. The one that caught my attention was divorce. I've not been divorced but I know and love many people who have gone through that and I know that it was one of the worst things they ever endured. I saw the heartbreak. I saw the pain. I saw the suffering. Through it all I have to admit I usually didn't think any good would come of it. Sometimes the sadness and grief over the loss of a marriage was so overwhelming and the pain could extend far beyond just the two people in the marriage. I couldn't see any good coming from it.

After thinking about it, I realized there was truth in what he said. Someone who has suffered through marital distress and divorce is certainly better equipped to help someone else through a similar loss. Better yet, they may even be able to help others prevent such an outcome. Who knows? I just know that we have all suffered in some way from evil in this world. If we can somehow turn that pain around to equip us for ministry, what a triumph over evil that would be!

What have you endured that you feel has better equipped you?


Ephesians 4:12

English Standard Version (ESV)
12 to equip the saints for the work of ministry, for building up the body of Christ...

Sunday, February 17, 2013

Abba Father




Abba Father

Rebecca St. James

from the album God
 
I'm feeling like the eagle that rises
Flies above the earth and its troubles
Oh yes he knows that there are valleys below
But under his wings there's a stronger power
Oh Father - You are my strength
On You I wait upon
CHORUS:
You make the road rise up to meet me
You make the sun shine warm upon my face
The wind is at my back & the rain falls soft
God I lift You high - You are my Abba
Running in this race to the finish line
The only road for me is the narrow
Not gonna stop or even look to the side.
When I fix my eyes on You Jesus
Oh Father (Abba) - You are my strength
Now more than ever
CHORUS
When you've run too far - and the road is long
Can't walk another mile - He is waiting
Hope in Him again - He'll renew you
Then you will rise, gather up your wings and fly...
CHORUS
Do you not know?
Have you not heard
He gives strength to the weary
To those who hope in Him
They will soar like eagles

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Friday, February 15, 2013

That is Classy

Where I work I often find myself fetching magazines from the waiting room for our patients to read while they wait in their individual rooms for surgery. You know about magazines at medical facilities, right? In general they are old and pretty well worn. 

I have been somewhat impressed at our clinic as I notice someone keeps up with them and so our's are not too old. We also have a nice variety, from "Field and Stream" to "Ladies Home Journal". There are also some of those celebrity magazines. Usually they still have their covers and everything. I didn't think we were doing too badly.

However, when I went with a family member to her medical appointment awhile back, I saw that 
this is what they offered...


Isn't that a great idea? They had stacks of art books! Isn't that classy? I felt a little bit more sophisticated just by having been there. 

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Happy Valentine's Day

Do you have any big plans for Valentine's Day? I always feel kind of sad on Valentine's Day. Although I have a loving husband, not everyone has a romantic love in their lives. I just don't think Valentine's Day has to be all about romantic love. Do you? Everyone has someone to love... a child, a relative, a friend. I think love flows from God and is for everyone.

So... Happy Valentine's Day to EVERYBODY! ... and to my friend, Pam, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Remember, our sale at Wyoming Rose Boutique is ending soon. Right now you can still get 50% off your ENTIRE order by typing the coupon code word JAZZY at check-out. 


Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Ash Wednesday - Beginning of Lent

I did not grow up in a church that observed things like Lent and it has taken me awhile to learn to appreciate it.  I was trying to think of a good way to explain Ash Wednesday and Lent to people who do not know much about it. I happened upon this little video and realized it was a great way to explain it very quickly. I hope you will take the 2 minutes to see it as I think it is very well done and even a bit entertaining.



What about those of you who do observe Lent; how is it meaningful to you?

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

Christianity in 5 Minutes or Less



Yesterday we concluded our Bible Study of Deuteronomy with some good discussion. I kept scribbling down  interesting points thinking, "That will make a good blog post!"  The discussion that I kept thinking about all evening, though, was the one about explaining Christianity to someone who knows little or nothing about it.

I have to say, I've not often been in a position of having a faith discussion with someone who is new to the stories and beliefs of Christianity. When I was a child, most people I knew went to church most Sundays. The children I played with knew about Jesus' birth. They knew Easter was really about Jesus, not an Easter Bunny. In fact, it was such common knowledge it was taken for granted. I think that was likely the story across most of America. Even those who were not Christians knew quite a lot about Christianity. I'm not so sure that is really true anymore.

We have quite a lot of families moving here, even to the remote State of Wyoming, who come from different countries and cultures. One of the women in our group has been approached by some of these new Wyomingites, asking her what Christianity is really about. I imagine it must seem rather overwhelming to try to answer succinctly. Christianity has so many stories and lessons, how do you wrap it up and neatly present it in a 5 minute conversation?

I was raised Christian and have attended at least weekly services my entire life, yet I am still learning more about our faith all the time. The depth of lessons and history taught in the Bible is amazing. Where do you even start? Well, as usual, we look to Jesus for such guidance. When Jesus was asked which commandment was most important, he gave an answer that I believe defines what Christianity is supposed to be. His answer reflects back to commands given to the Hebrew people generations earlier, written in the Old Testament, long before Jesus was here. His words are recorded in the New Testament book of Mark, chapter twelve, verses 29-31:

Mark 12:29-31

New Living Translation (NLT)
29 Jesus replied, “The most important commandment is this: ‘Listen, O Israel! The Lord our God is the one and only Lord. 30 And you must love the Lord your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your mind, and all your strength.’[a] 31 The second is equally important: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’[b]No other commandment is greater than these.”


That's it! That is how we are to live! All the other lessons in the Bible center around those words.

I know that throughout history Christians have failed to quite live up to these commands. Why is it so hard for us? Why do we repeatedly try to put other things higher on our priority list than our love for God? Why do we have such a struggle to love others? I think I am going to print out those verses and put them somewhere that I look each day. I want to be constantly reminded that we are to live a life of love for God and love for others...simple as that. I'll end with this quote from The Law of Love:

"A love for God and neighbor transform our behavior and impact every last one of our actions and decisions." 
Melissa Moore Fitzpatrick



Monday, February 11, 2013

Reality Weather

I spent a bit of time this week-end watching the weather channel. I expect many of you did as well. As I watched meteorologists plopping themselves down on snowbanks or standing dangerously close to an incoming tide during a blizzard, something occurred to me. I realized that the Weather Channel has become my favorite reality television show!

We didn't need television, though, to experience weather drama. I saw some wild driving by others and went into a bit of a slide myself on Saturday. No harm done, but I think my pulse may have been a bit elevated. 

Really, all we needed to do was step out onto our deck to enjoy the changing scenery. It was a beautiful week-end!







Remember that we are doing that big one week sale at Wyoming Rose Boutique. Use the coupon code word JAZZY at check-out and you will receive 50% off ANYTHING and EVERYTHING IN OUR SHOP!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

I Refuse



Josh Wilson


Sometimes I, 

I just want to close my eyes
And act like everyone's alright 
When I know they're not.
This world needs God
But it's easier to stand and watch. 
I could pray a prayer and just move on
Like nothing's wrong.



But I refuse.
'Cause I don't want to live like I don't care.
I don't want to say another empty prayer.
I refuse to
Sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself.
I could choose
Not to move but I refuse.



I can hear the least of these 
Crying out so desperately, 
And I know we are the hands and feet 
Of you, oh god.
So, if you say move,
Then it's time for me to follow through,
And do what I was made to do.
Show them who you are.




'Cause I don't want to live like I don't care.
I don't want to say another empty prayer.
I refuse to
Sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself.
I could choose
Not to move but I refuse.



To stand and watch 
The weary and lost 
Cry out for help.
I refuse
To turn my back 
And try and act like all is well.
I refuse
To stay unchanged,
To wait another day,
To die to myself.
I refuse
To make one more excuse. 



'Cause I don't want to live like I don't care.
I don't want to say another empty prayer.
I refuse to
Sit around and wait for someone else
To do what God has called me to do myself.
I could choose
Not to move but I refuse.

Saturday, February 09, 2013

On Being a Nurser

Not long ago Cordelia said that when she grows up she wants to be a "nurser like Grandma". Isn't that sweet? At her preschool recently a little friend had a tummy ache and the teacher asked the little girl if she wanted them to call her grandma. I guess that is the person who picks her up. Anyway, Cordy piped up, "No! Call my grandma! She's a nurse."  Aaaaah. I like that.

I started thinking, though, would that be my first choice of profession for Cordelia? I'm still pondering that question. I don't think I ever encouraged my own children to go into nursing. There are definitely pros and cons involved with nursing as a career.



There are a lot of careers that do not require overnight shifts or 12+ hour shifts on your feet. Jobs abound that do not require cleaning up diarrhea, vomit, blood or snot (my area of weakness). A lot of professions do not involve lifting heavy people up off the floor when they've fallen, calming frightened people who blame you for their misery or exposing yourself to dangerous chemicals such as chemotherapy. Many jobs don't demand such frequent hand-washing that your hands are rough or maybe even cracked and bleeding before you go home. Some professions do not regularly expose you to HIV, MRSA, hepatitis or a plethora of other diseases. I have personally suffered from Clostridium Difficile and Enterobacter cloacae (not your garden variety) of pneumonia, both acquired as a result of my nursing work.

HOWEVER...

Many careers do not offer an opportunity to see a frightened patient relax because you were able to calm some of their fears. Many people aren't in a position to see the courage and determination I've seen in people facing life-threatening illness. Nurses can find themselves comforting the newly diagnosed and encouraging family members to be the best version of themselves to help their loved one. I have been present for births and I have held the hand of a person leaving this world. Nurses can serve as comforter, problem solver, reliever of pain, nerve-calmer, massage-giver, health educator, and yes... friend.

One of my fellow RN's just this last week told me that "RN" stood for refreshments and narcotics, referring to the fact that in many ways a nurse serves somewhat as a waitress. It's true! Nursing is most definitely a career of serving as needed. I laughed at her statement but as I pondered it I realized it pretty well told the story of nursing. We try to provide whatever is needed at the moment. I've probably delivered almost as much coffee and demerol.

So, would I be pleased if Cordelia really did grow up to be a nurse? Well, only if it is truly her dream. It is a very demanding type of work with a lot of cons. Just the same, I've had some of my most powerful moments as an RN. I've learned more than I've taught and received more than I've given. I am very grateful that I've been able to follow MY dream. I am pleased if my children and grandchildren have the opportunity to discover and follow their own dreams.

Friday, February 08, 2013

Wyoming Road Trip

Remember that we are doing that big one week sale on Wyoming Rose Boutique. Use the coupon code word JAZZY at check-out and you will receive 50% off ANYTHING IN OUR SHOP!

Yesterday I was called off work so Maria and I took advantage and headed to visit my Mom, little girls in tow. Cordelia was pretty excited to go see Grandma Grace. As it turned out, my sister was sick and couldn't join us. My aunt and cousin came over for a bit. It was a fun day!

Cordelia does well on road trips. She has a little DVD player which helps.  Elise slept for much of the trip. We actually saw two bald eagles sitting on a fence but did not stop as we didn't want to disturb Elise. I'm kind of regretting that. Seeing two bald eagles hanging out is not an ordinary event. You would have liked the photos...sorry about that.


Elise enjoyed exploring my Mom's decor.


Cordelia loved up on my cousin, Anne Marie.
She sometimes loves kind of rough.


She also enjoyed my aunt, Michelle.
Do you see that Cordelia is wearing a shopping bag as her backpack?


It was a lovely girl day.




Thursday, February 07, 2013

Something New on My Fridge

I told you about Mike helping me pick out new glasses a few weeks ago. What I did not mention was that I had received a bit of a surprise at my eye appointment earlier that day.

First, I should tell you that I have been miffed for the last decade simply because I had to give in and wear glasses at all. You see, I was really proud of my terrific eye sight for nearly 40 years. Dumb, I know. My eye sight was a gift; I did nothing to develop or enhance it. Nevertheless, it made me happy when a doctor once told me I could see into what was none of my business. Cool, huh?

Well, this eye visit was just a regular check. Mainly, I wanted new glasses and contacts because I could tell my prescription needed a bit of tweaking. That's all I wanted. Well, my eye doctor did that for me. Then, he showed me the photo of the inside of my eye that they'd taken. He said I had a few spots that were concerning him and he wanted me to do another test. No problem. He has cool machines and they don't hurt. The results didn't really cheer me, though. What he tells me is that I don't yet have macular degeneration, but that the peri-macular area has some problems already. Say what? I told him I didn't appreciate him talking to me like that. No one said those kinds of things to me when I was in my 20's.  

The doctor sent some artwork home with me to add to my fridge collection.  Do you see it?


No? I do have a lot of stuff on that fridge, don't I? Here, I will give you a close-up.


That funny grid thing is called an Amsler Grid. What you do is look at the dot in the middle, wearing your glasses or contacts as you normally would. (Don't use this one but if you want to try it you can find one here.) Close one eye while still looking at the dot. Do any of the lines in the grid look curvy or otherwise funky? Do you have any gray or black spots? If so, don't panic (although I pretty much did) but do make an eye appointment.

I learned a lot about macular degeneration that I didn't know before. The macula is at the rear of the eyeball. It is responsible for fine central vision, so it is a pretty important piece of the eye. When it degenerates, the patient slowly (or sometimes not so slowly) loses central vision. That may not sound so bad as peripheral vision will be left intact. The problem is, without central vision you can't read, see faces, drive, etc. It doesn't cause pain but it can certainly affect a person's quality of life and ability to function independently in the way they normally would.

Have you heard of dry and wet macular degeneration? Well, what makes the wet "wet" is when new little blood vessels develop in response to the damage. These little vessels can be friable and leaky. The leaking blood causes damage and can much more quickly destroy the macula. Most cases of wet macular degeneration began as dry macular degeneration. So now you know the difference.

I have some precious people in my life who are actually dealing with this but I still had more to learn. If you don't know much about it,  you can go to sites like this one or maybe go here for more in-depth information. I bet that you, too, know people who have this condition. Understanding what they are going through could be helpful.

So what about me? Well, I just don't know. The doctor asked me to check my vision with the Amsler Grid about every two weeks (the first week I checked about 3 times a day...not that I was obsessing or anything) and see him in 6 months. During that time I am to be taking eye vitamins. From what I read, there is a chance I will not even develop macular degeneration. Even if I do, it could be many years yet. I'm not thinking about it all the time like I did that first week. Educating myself a bit more helped me get my worry into perspective.

Another thing that I actually appreciate, no matter what I said, is my optometrist and his machines. I am well aware that a lot of people do not have access to such good care. I am really quite grateful to him for his thoroughness. 

One thing I enjoy is doing research on health related topics. I'm thinking I may, from time to time, do something like this again. After all, I am a nurse. However, I am NOT a physician. NOTHING I put on my blog should be used to replace talking to your doctor. I only intend to offer basic information that is readily available to anyone from trusted websites. So, now that I put out that legal-sounding mumbo jumbo, let me know if there is a topic you'd like for me to research.

And last, remember that we are doing that big one week sale on Wyoming Rose Boutique. Use the coupon code word JAZZY at check-out and you will receive 50% off ANYTHING IN OUR SHOP... YES, the ENTIRE order. Now is the time. We want to move out some things as we are preparing to fill in with new items. Either click on the name of the store highlighted in this paragraph or click on any of the photos of our merchandise. It will take you right there lickety-split! (Wow! I've not said, "lickety-split" in a long time!)

Happy Thursday!




Wednesday, February 06, 2013

Living Creatively - Assignment #1

Before I begin today's post, I want to tell you a little something. Soon, Maria and I intend to do some revamping at Wyoming Rose Boutique and some items will be disappearing. So, if there is anything you've had your eye on, now's the time to go for it. We wanted to give our blog readers a chance for a discount. If you choose to order something within the next week, use the coupon code word JAZZY when you are checking out and you will receive 50% off. Yep, that's half off!

OK, on to my regularly scheduled post... 

As I said yesterday, Maria gave me this little booklet full of ideas to spur me on with my determination to live more creatively.


I intend to try each one of them, either exactly as written or some creative version of my own that was inspired by her suggestions. I will spread this out over the course of the year doing it whenever I get the notion (or the time). 

If you want to try some of Maria's suggestions, I'd love to hear about it in the comments!

OK, for the first one, I took a series of upside-down photographs. It was easy and kind of entertaining to try to decide what would look artistic (or at least interesting) from that point of view.


Up the Down Staircase


Candlestick Parked


Crazy Corner


Jazz It Up


Well now, that was kind of fun. 
Have a jazzy day!





Tuesday, February 05, 2013

Living Creatively

My birthday was last week and I received a wonderful bunch of sweet greetings, cards and gifts. I really am a spoiled woman! Thank you everyone! I received books, warming oils, a beautiful new purse, clothes and much more. I'm telling you, I am surrounded by caring and generous family and friends.

Cordelia made a card for me that I will treasure. On the front is her own special artwork and she dictated these words for her mom to write on the inside, "Dear Grandma, I love you! I know it's your birthday. That's all. This is Cordelia. I made a note for you. God's blessing is on you!"  (Are you smiling? Did an "Aaaaaaah" slip out?)

Do you remember this blog post? I spoke of putting aside a lot of the normal New Year's Resolutions and instead, resolving to live more creatively. Well... Maria (Miss Creativity Herself) did not forget that post. In fact, she told me she started working on one of my birthday gifts right then. She made me a "Creativity Kit". What a fun idea! I wanted to show you as maybe you are trying to come up with an unusual gift for someone.



She used a container that was pretty in itself. I think it may have been one of those that comes with a new set of sheets. I love those and always try to find a way to reuse them.

Inside the kit was a plethora of cool things! Here, take a peek...


Isn't that a fun assortment? She didn't stop there, though. She made up a little booklet with ideas to jump-start those creative juices. 



I'm thinking of it as something of an assignment booklet. I intend to share some of my "assignments" with you over the course of this year. This is going to be so fun!


I joined a Linky Parties today. If you want to check them out, click on the cute little buttons.

Monday, February 04, 2013

A SUPER Evening



I don't care about football. 
There. 
I said it. 
I just don't. 

Maria doesn't care about football either. As a matter of fact, Cordelia, Elise and Bumblebee don't seem interested at all. So, we had a girls' night last night. I went to their house and enjoyed a very girly evening. As you can clearly see in that first photo, I can still multi-task.


We watched a nice movie, "The Little Engine That Could".
OK, I really didn't remain that fascinated with the movie but Cordelia, luckily, was not bothered by her mother and grandmother chattering all through the movie.


I received a lot of sweet Elise hugs.

It was a really, really SUPER evening and nobody suffered any injuries.

We had no power outages.

Nobody even had to take a time-out.

Everybody was a winner.

How was your Sunday?




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