Give your praise

before you hit your knee- what a great phrase, have you ever thought about what it means?

It is so easy for us to fall into the victim role- it made not be our mentality per say but we fall into this role without thinking about it. We will think why is this happening to me and then we go straight to prayer griping about our woes. We ask, ask, ask, and repeat.

Now let’s stop and think about the saying. Giving praise does so much for us than we realize. Not only are we recognizing God for all that He does, we are seeing the great things in our life. Our focus begins to shift. We realize that it is not all bad.

A big question is where to get started. Praise doesn’t always come easy, especially when facing something big in our life. We tend to lose focus of the good and only see bad. I like to call this walking around in the dark and only seeing the dark. We forget to search for the light even though it is beckoning just beyond the tree line.

My advise- start with a list (if you know me, you know I LoVe my lists). I would say start really small. We tend to lean towards the big stuff first because we want to just jump. This is overwhelming and yes easy to give up. So write 1 thing down a day, if that is all you can do. Since it is common to start my goals in 3-5s, I would say start there. But do what you can, just remember not to over do it.

You can start at the simplest. I’m thankful for the roof over my head, food on my table, my family and pets. I’m thank to have a job, a car, place to live, and that list can go on and on. Easy enough, write down 3-5 similar each day. As you are going, start looking at more of your day. I’m thankful I made it to work on time and safe. I’m thankful that all my family made it home tonight to eat dinner around the table. I’m thankful for the time I spent with my friend or family member that is hard to see. The more you start to see these things daily, the more light you start to let in and the less dark your world will become.

Colossians 3:17 (NIV)

And whatever you do, whether in word or deed, do it all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.

A book that I was recommended to read and is in my amazon cart for my next order is One Thousand Gifts by Ann Voskamp. My understanding it is about a woman who is finding her way to thankfulness and her recommendations on how to do this & what she experienced doing so. If you get this book, let me know what you think and I’ll do the same as soon as I read it.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

The unknown

There are so many topics that I want to talk about. My head keeps going through them over and over. My running progress, my day yesterday, the state of the world (okay maybe more of a society thing), and the list goes on. It all boils down to time- who has it?

I feel like I’m struggling lately with who I am. Okay not so much that as to who I am supposed to be. The Lord pretty much shouted at me to slow down yesterday. I had an over all bad day. I should have started my day in prayer or at least the small prayer that I do right before teaching. The kids were full of energy and I felt alone with the 12 kids. I even called out my assistant as he was just as loud yesterday. I lost my patience for a moment and I ended up feeling guilty. (I didn’t do anything major but it felt so big as this girl is a sweetheart and I know she didn’t mean to do anything and I made her cry- ugh)

So I finally got over it and moved on with my day. Come to last night, I have no idea how it happened as it doesn’t make sense. Our garage door is slow, yes, but it usually is well up before I get seated in my car. So what did I do to run into it? It was just the bottom panel and it took my antenna off, as well as scraped the top a bit- nothing major but still how? Nothing makes sense other than God saying that I need to stop.

Which leads me to my running progress as guess where I was heading when I hit the garage, the gym to run. I’m on day 42 of my move goals but have missed 3-4 days of doing any exercise and have done some quick yoga sessions at night just to get whatever I need for mins in. I’ve had so much on my plate that I’ve had no time to get in much running. Although my timing was not bad the last 2 times that I went.

The last topic on my mind that I’ve been wanting to blog on is swearing and how it is so widely accepted now. When I was a kid, you would have gotten smacked or mouth washed out for saying these things. And taking the Lord’s name in vain was so not accepted. Now we have cute emojis or sayings to cover it up but we use it in vain all the time. It was brought up in my Bible Study recently and it really got me thinking. Why have we wandered so far from the rules of the Bible or even common decency?

Now back to the topic of the unknown. This does all relate on some level. I’ve been struggling a lot of what are my next steps and am I doing enough. I know I’m not doing a job that is my calling and I know it is hard to start in that field. Plus until last night I really didn’t know what that was. Sure I assumed based on the things that I love to do but didn’t know for sure.

In my questions about doing enough, I decided to take this Poverty Cure class. Best thing that I have done for myself in a while (besides running). There is a lot of discussion about what is those living in poverty’s God given talent and how can they use it. Well this brings us to the point of how can we help. But in that if you don’t know yours, how can you help? So many questions. Well I took 3 tests last night to get answers on this. Every one of them points to teaching. 1 pointed to prophesy and another to Evangelism. 2 said writing was high for me, along with knowledge. Faith was definitely strong, as well.

So where does that bring me? Teaching is something I love and wanted to do for a while. Writing, well you know that I love that or you wouldn’t be reading this. I think it is a combination of both with Christ at the center. Now, how to get into this, is the question. Oh and how do I do this all in a way that I listen to the message to slow down (which was one that was given to me also when Hermione was missing)?

So I will be finishing out some real estate transaction and closing that door finally, which is amazing to me as I knew God wanted me to open it. But there is a big part of me that believes that it was to do the transactions that I have up to now and the one I’m working on.

I’ve had this dream of opening a youth center of sorts. I would have my bakery out of it (something that I’ve wanted for years is to bake). But it would be, I don’t know an arcade style, maybe roller skating, yoga studio, bible study type of thing. No clue. I don’t know honestly. A safe place is all I know that I could teach out of and write in my spare time. I thought about the bowling ally that has now been for sale for a couple of years but I still don’t know what that looks like.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

Amazing the kindness of strangers

I am in constant awe of the kindness of strangers. Hermione was so skinny and low on protein for being gone so long without food. The vet told us to add eggs and chicken to her diet. One neighbor that I still haven’t met in person dropped off all natural treats that she had for her dog of 11 years that passed away recently.

One of my husband’s co-workers, who had their own dog treat business, drove into work on one of his days that he didn’t have to, just to make sure to bring us 3 bags of his and his wife’s specialty treats. I have to tell you- my dogs would do flips for these treats. They have this all down to a science and the ingredients are amazing. But my dogs act like I am giving them food from the table (which we never do). These treats are packed with vitamins that help with recovery, which we all know that Hermione was/is needing this. So it’s been great seeing her grow. Click here if you want to get your own awesome treats!

I still have people reaching out to see how she is doing and that is truly amazing. So even though we tend to see all the bad in this world, there are so many good kind hearts that are truly amazing. Keep blessing others as you can. We can make a difference in this world.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

Miracles Are Amazing

So, I have to tell you that I reached a point on Tuesday night that I was starting to feel like we’ve never find our doggy. She had been gone 12 days and no sightings that we could confirm. Since day 1, I knew God had a plan for me in all of this. I knew I needed to have my eyes wide open and I still believed this and believed He was good & faithful so my thoughts kept going to someone having her. That it was innocent, they just didn’t know better.

So why did I know God wanted me to listen up? I just really felt it all the way through me is the biggest answer but not only that, I kept feeling like I missed something that night. All the things added up and not in the good way so I knew that part didn’t come from the Lord, He only does good.  But it was always weird that my son that has never walked Hermione by himself, that I can remember, decided this was the day he was going to start. He went to grab her harness but it wouldn’t go on right so he decided that she’d be fine in her collar. He took a way on this walk that he normally does not go. The flags that spooked Hermione, spooked her more than usual (I brought her by them the day before and was able to get her through them). That she ran away from him all together since she is so incredibly close to her family. I mean this is a dog that I never have on her leash to go in our garage or in the front yard to go for a ride. She wants to go with us more that she never leaves the yard. So really nothing added up. The way she ran at first, she knew so she could have gotten home but must of ended up in the field and that got her confused. So many things that I couldn’t explain so I knew I needed to listen up.

At first, I thought God was wanting me to tell about the kindness of strangers (and I still do). Hundreds of people reached out to me, shared my post to facebook. I had put it on swap and shops & spread the word through so many sites that night. My posts had over 700-800 shares and add in the comments, it was truly amazing. People messaged me with thoughts and prayers, offering to search for her, and even one person offered their drone to look over anywhere I thought she could be. The problem is she went into hiding and I had no idea where she could be.

This brings us to Wednesday. Still frustrated that its been 13 days and no sightings, I thought about getting this boxer that looks like she came from her litter. My husband said no at first because he still thought she was coming home. I said when she comes, she will have her sister, well on this Wednesday, a new picture came out of the rescue and he was more willing. Something kept eating at me this day. I went to Target after work and as I was driving home, I decided to talk to my mom.

My mom is in Heaven and it had been a while since I had talked to her. I said, “mom, I know its been a while but I need a big favor- she’s been missing for a while now. Can you please talk to Jesus for me? Ask him to fill me with the Holy Spirit so I know what I need to do. I miss her so much and I cannot stand the unknown. Love you mom.”

I went home and K started the food I bought, while I searched on my phone for any sign of her. I kind of just stood there thinking what do I do from here waiting for E to text me to pick her up. K decided she was going with me and we told the hubby to watch the Chili while gone. We were preheating the oven for the breadsticks. I picked up E and we headed to Dollar Tree to pick up only a few things. The person from the retrievers had been texting me on some things that I could do for our dog but I was kind like I feel like I’ve done everything that I can. Then it came over, a text that read- hi i messaged you on facebook already wondering if you’ve found your dog yet? my friend is in sierra and found a boxer.

he said it had a white patch on its chest and looks like the dog on the post.

I started shaking like you wouldn’t believe. I couldn’t believe it, that was my dog in the picture. I said “OMG. that looks like her. Where???” At this time my girls walked up to me and they could read my face and said what’s wrong? I couldn’t hardly speak so I said look. And they were like that’s her, where is she, lets go get her. I was texting- how’s she look by this time because I was trying to remember what they retrievers lady told me to say if a sighting came over. I asked a few more questions, when, were they able to call her?

20 minutes ago, he went to get a neighbor, he tried to call her, she was shy… 20 minutes ago- did you see that? Shortly after the time, I “talked to mom”. Jesus is good. God is good. He sent this miracle. This young man had gone back and got her. She let him carry her to his house (she’s never let anyone outside of the family too close to her). The Lord did that. We went there and picked her up.

She is very skinny.(Taken Thursday after vet kept her overnight)

But she is okay. A little antibiotics and bandaging for her raw feet but she is okay. We will be nursing her back to health as far as she went 13 days without food and lost 17 pounds (best guess). But she is good. She knows her home, her family, her old routines. She is amazing.

God is Amazing! So now I believe my job is to spread the word of His miracle! I love Him so much and glad He chose me to testify. It is through Him that she was saved!

“The voice of the Lord echoes above the sea. The God of glory thunders. The Lord thunders above the mighty sea. The voice of the Lord is powerful; the voice of the Lord is fully of majesty.”
Psalm 29: 3-4.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

Missing

Our dog went missing on Thursday night which brought on a lot of emotions and thoughts. First thing I did was take to facebook, which brought in a couple of responses. This lead me to crying and leaving work because one of the responses was that a neighbor thought she was hit by another car in front of them. I’ve only been in my job for four months and wow is what I can say. People dropped what they were doing to help me close up my desk and leave. Then a couple of people came straight to find me when they were done with my shift. They went around to the neighborhoods to see if anyone saw her.

In the meantime, my family searched the area that it was thought that she was hit. No sign of her. We had went through a neighbor’s yard to get to that area- someone that I had not met before. He jumped in his car to search. My son had been walking around trying to find her and several people started searching with him. Friends on facebook jumped in their cars to search. No sign of her anywhere.

I fell apart that evening. Yes, I missed her dearly- she is the happiest but scaredest dog I know- you know boxers, the moment that you walk into the room they are so happy to see you wiggling everything they have. She would have done anything to please her family. She got off her collar because she was afraid of the flags near the new homes. That made her bolt across the street which led to a whole new set of fears for her.
But I was also so worried for my kids- A because he was the one walking her, E- because she had a special bond with her, and K- because the bond was different (medical) but they also had a bond like no other. I was also so overwhelmed by the support that I experience from so many people including people I don’t know. I learned the power of facebook that night and if you want something to spread quickly- there is a way through facebook.

I went to bed late as I kept checking the doors, barely slept and officially got up at 4am. I went straight to the doors again to check for her- still not here. I paced around for the next two hours- during this time, E came to me and said she felt bad for not spending time with her lately because of school and activities. I was a mess with no sleep. Then, around 6- I knew I needed coffee and I forgot to get some to make. So I thought about going to our local coffee shop but this made me break. See, everytime I go there (and quite possibly too much), I bring our sweet girl. It is her favorite routine- go for a ride to get a treat! She wasn’t home to go and this killed me. I knew I needed sleep, so I fell asleep on the couch for an hour which led to K and I going out searching one more time.

In this time, I had so many people reach out to me on how they could help. I started to realize how focused that we as people get on the bad. There was a shooter, people are crazy, out to get you… This opened my eyes to the goodness out there. So many prayers have been received it is truly amazing.

My original post had 81 shares and 93 comments +plus all the comments that it got when I shared to swap and shop.
My lost dogs post got 455 shares (no I am not kidding- wow) and again many comments.
I took to the vet and rescue pages. another 100 shares. I’ve had several people reach out by messenger to help.
My husband who works out of town had several people that don’t live near here saw they saw my post on facebook (I’m not friends with them there)- it spread that far.

Just stop and think about how far this all went. We are talking about 700 possible shares and maybe more that I don’t even know about. hundreds of comments and so many that just jumped in a car to search. Amazing- God is powerful!

So I did get overwhelmed and consumed by this in the last few days. I wanted to find her and nothing else mattered. I forgot to let God control it. I’m not saying that I stop trying to look but I can’t let it control my life. So in Church yesterday, I was pretty depressed- Sunday School helped to take my mind of of everything for a moment. Then Church- wow- sometimes a sermon was meant for you. Discontentment. It leads to a spiral of negativity and so much worse. Contentment with God, leads to happiness. It is easy to go crazy when all you see is dark but letting go and letting God can work wonders. I trust that the Lord is moving- I mean the testimony is in the way the word has spread. So now I need to sit back and let Him work. While I continue to do His work that He has meant for me.

We miss our girl deeply and pray for a safe return. But we must now stop the bickering and depression in the house and trust that God is faithful. Please continue to pray for us. Thank you for all that have supported us. If you see her, you know what to do- call us- call the vet- or get someone very calm, very gentle with treats that will let her come to you. She is scared.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

KK’s recent diabetes scare

It’s been a couple weeks now since KK ended herself up back where we started a few years ago- a DKA status in the hospital. This is the hard thing with diabetes. It does not take a break no matter how much the person wants to. This was enough to wake her up to what she wants- which is the pump finally. She has been working hard to get this but this also means middle of the night checks by mom.

This is a tough one but it’s my daughter and I want the best for her. I have seen great improvements since she has been managing everything better. I have been stepping in more which when I was in the hospital with her and going through these pump classes, I realized that I should have been more involved than I have been. My question though is how do your force a 15 year old to do what she has to. The answer is by staying on her, watching her do it, offering to do some of the shots and make it okay. She has been pulling more and more away from me the last couple years and its been hard to fight every battle but all we every want for our children is for them to be healthy.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

Where have I been

Hello All!

Sorry it’s been so long since I posted. I have been dealing with so much lately and have not had much opportunity to write. This is probably the best time to be writing as it is life and well the journey that many of us embark on. There are so many struggles that we find ourselves in and so many ways to deal with these struggles.

Some of us turn to anger and take it out on others. Some turn to fear and spend much time crying. Others turn to planning and making lists in order to find a way out- maybe avoiding what really is going on. Which version are you?

I find myself to be a mix of all 3 but weighing strongly towards the lists or finding ways to focus my time on everything else. I have recently put myself back in real estate – I never really stopped it but recently made a big come back as I need to be home more and working outside of the home is not a great option. Real estate takes a lot of work and time away. Working part time until I launch this is actually taking more time away from everything than I wanted. I am considering finding a night job at this point.  But this is where I have been – a scheduled out day to its max and trying to balance everything else in life.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

An Inspirational Run

As I do many times while running, I was thinking about a blog that I’m going to write. Today was going to be all about my journey recently and how today marked the day that I am starting my running journey again. I will get to that in a minute but I first have to talk about what happened at mile 1 today. I was in the midst of thinking about how would say yet again I will never run a marathon when my cardinal friend visited me out of no where and stronger came on at the same time, by Mandisa.

So let me tell you a little about my cardinal friend. He and his family started to visit our home shortly after mom passed and I knew she was with me. He has made an appearance several times when I’ve needed it. The last day we were moving out of our house, just 2 days ago. I let him know that he would need to come see us at the new house now. Every time I see him or smell the lilacs- I saw hi mom as I know she is with me.

So today, I’m thinking about how it’s been a month since I ran 3 miles and probably a month before that since running 4. I’ve ran a mile here and there but not well. We have been focusing so much on moving and cleaning and making the house perfect for the graduation party that I let everything go. (so glad for my Plexus supplements and business to help fill in the blanks during this time)

But I’ve been looking to the runs that I have or want to sign up for soon. I have a 10k at the end of next month. I’ve never ran that far before and I really want to sign up for a 15k in Sept- it’s at Jesse James days!!! So that means I need to get my focus back on. Then I was thinking about how my marathon runner friend said to me at the last race we both did, that I just need to focus myself on the distance not how far I run but how far I go. It is okay to walk just get yourself to the distance you want to go, the speed will come.

At that moment I was like I will never run a marathon, I do not want to run 26 miles ever. That will take me forever and it is just not for me. Seriously that was the very moment the cardinal came, I recognized the markings to know it was my friend. I thought to myself my angel is here cheering me on and stronger started playing and I’m like oh wow God is really trying to talk to me right now and tell me that I’m being made stronger. That whole song was my best run during the 3 miles that I ran.

That inspiration was amazing. The next 3 songs that I heard was about doing too much and rushing through life, which is partly why I haven’t blogged in a while so I will take heed and rest a bit more.

Ephesians 6: 10-11
10 Finally, let the Lord make you strong. Depend on his mighty power. 
11 Put on all of God’s armor. Then you can stand firm against the devil’s evil plans.
Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

Why not Why

A few weeks back, I was telling a co-worker how I told a friend that she needs to stop letting her daughter watch 13 Reasons Why. I forgot to mention the part or maybe I didn’t get the opportunity to, where I said to stop until you can watch and have discussion. My co-worker jumped on me and said why do you hate this show so bad? So let me explain.

It is not that I hate the show; I haven’t watched it yet to say that. I know the premise and from what I have heard so far, this is not a show you let a kid just watch. I am really not sure if I will ever watch it. I feel I should to get the full knowledge and understanding but I am afraid of how close to home it will hit.  Let me start by saying Suicide is NeVeR the answer. No, never. Seriously, never. Okay now that I’ve said that. I will admit that when I was in high school, I attempted twice and thought about it probably nonstop.

I was severely bullied from a very young age. While I see the point of understanding the perspective of those who are being bullied, I need to point out both sides of this. You may think your kid is perfect. They are happy and outgoing. Everything is great. Let me tell you that is not always the case. Discussions from both points need to happen when watching a show of this caliber.

My parents are/ were awesome. Don’t get me wrong, we had our parent/ child moments like all kids but they are the most caring people that I know. But they were clueless when it came to all the issues that I was having. They thought I was just shy; later years thought I was nothing but trouble but they did not know the pain I was feeling until the first time I tried to kill myself.

Kids hide this part of them well. They are depressed or stressed to the point that they do not see an answer and are afraid to ask for help. This is sad but truthful and don’t think because you have the most open relationship with your kids that this will be different. They know how to hide this stuff well.

Now on to the points of the 13 reasons. Okay so now that you have had the talk with your kids about how no matter the reason, it is never a good one to commit suicide. Talk to someone, find anyone that can help you, not just a friend. We’d love for it to be us, your parents but whoever you trust that is an adult- talk to them!

13 takes you through a series of people who have made this girl feel awful. Each episode bring you through this. A big point is that maybe just one of these things would never be enough to push someone but all together is too much. So now is the time to talk to your kid about no matter how small it seems to them, it may be huge or the thing that breaks the camel’s back. Do not pick on others, especially if you think it is to fit in. If others are doing it, this person has had enough.

I would tell my kids to be the one to friend that person and show them someone cares but it is not easy for all kids to be that way. Also, you don’t want them to get sucked into a world of drama so a good time to remind them of their values and how to stay true to them no matter what.

As a parent, I have 3 kids that are pretty open with me. 2 for sure. The one, he’s a boy and has a hard time relating everything to me but he doesn’t hold back either. My forth one, however, I have to drag things out of her and I don’t always know what is true. This is a struggle so of course, I have talked to them all about this show. Asked them not to watch unless I do. One admitted to watching the first episode and said several of her friends love it but she thought it was stupid.

As a youth leader, we have also discussed it. I was amazed by how many parents have talked to their kids about it, some said no you will not watch, some said you can watch but we discuss it all, and there was 1 or 2 that didn’t talk to them about it or care what they did with it. We talked about where to go for help and what our beliefs are on the topic. Great discussion.

So there you have it, I am not saying no. I am not saying don’t watch. I am simply saying topics like this one NeEd to be thoroughly discussed.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-

Working Around the House

We purchased a new home recently and it is funny, we are doing so much work to it. We are changing the style to be us really. I am happy with many of the changes but it is a lot of work. The last time we bought a home, we painted everything within a few days and I said I would never do that again. Yet here I am painting away.

It is funny how we each perceive work.  As you know I did the strengths finder and I really do believe that explains a lot. For me, I need a checklist. I need to make sure that everything is in perfect working order and then I achieve it. It can take me extra time when doing something because I want it done right the first time. I want it to be at its best and when it is not, I get very frustrated.

Others just want to get as much done as possible so they can move on to the next project figuring that if something isn’t perfect, they will either come back to it or it is okay to have some imperfection. Others just want to make other people happy so they don’t care about the work itself, as long as the person is happy in the end with it.

I do believe that knowing these things is powerful. It helps to know that an achiever may take a little extra time to get there but it will be done right (that has to do with my individualization too, I like to get to know a person). Where someone else who cares more about other things may do it fast but their success may be in a different area. It helps to build a strong team based on strengths. You give those who are stronger in certain areas the tasks that will make them thrive and the whole team will work well together.

Well enough with my thoughts of the day. Back to work, I must go. Here’s a teaser of what we have accomplished thus far.

Sending All My Love!
Now tell me your story-