Sunday, August 15, 2010

Before she was a glimmer!!!

Before she was a glimmer in her daddy's eyes, her Father had her pictured in His head.
Before she giggled for the first time, her Father had captured just the right sound to come from her mouth when she was tickled.
Before she spoke her first word, her Father had placed a vocabulary in her that included her dolls, Laquisha and Sandy; the Bible story about Me-shack, you-shack, and A-bendie-girl; her hu-hu (tutu).
Before she uttered a sound, she was filled with sounds that would pierce the silence and the heart.
Before there was a sweet girl named Mazie, there was a Father who knit her together in her mothers womb.

Before there was a hint that something was wrong, her Father knew and knew what needed to be done.

Today was surgery day for Miss Mazie. For all of the details check out which is Betsy's site.

For me...I just want to thank God because of His love and His care in the lives of those we love. It hasn't been a time absent of tears or fears. It hasn't been a time when I haven't been anxious has been a time of building faith, of stretching me and testing me if what I say, I believe. Jesus and I have had many conversations over the years and "why" creeps out of my mouth.

The Israelites wondered for 40 years in the desert. They complained and questioned Moses and ultimately God. And after the complaints, the questions, and all of the whining...God still loved them. It's what makes my questions and complaints humbling...God still loves me...and I praise Him for that. Thank you for praying for her and for our family...

Friday, August 13, 2010

Please Pray for this babe!!

Mazie has surgery on Monday...
Please pray that the OR will be surrounded with angels
and those same angels will direct the doctors hands.
She is a pretty precious treasure in our lives...

A big change...for the better? You decide!

I have to confess that the relationship between Betty and I was not perfect. Looking at this picture one would THINK that we were happy this point...we were...BUT...
Any time it is blueberry season and we have visitors, we go to the blueberry patch. We pick blueberries and so there was no reason why I shouldn't have Betty come with me. She could take SOME home and I would have help picking was beginning to be a perfect day...Betty was blown away by the size and the amount of blueberries and she threw herself into picking... The crop was good. I stopped at about 9 pounds because I saw she was over 10 and I wanted about 20 pounds with the first picking.....

Even NOW we looked like the perfect team. Look at those smiles!!! We had picked the blueberries, had fun, laughed, took pictures and THEN it happened!!!!!

Right after that, I went for my purse and my checkbook. Our conversation went something like this....
Betty: What are you doing?
Me: (smiling still) I am getting my checkbook to pay for the blueberries.
Betty: These are mine. (starting to turn ugly here in the beautiful blueberry patch)
Me: (straight smiling, knowing that I wouldn't get free labor for my next "picking"...dry laugh...) No, how are you going to get them home on the plane?
Betty: in my suitcase. We have to buy some containers
Me: No, really?!
Betty: These are mine! You can get your own later.
Seriously, this is almost word for word!!! I had NO free labor the next time AND all of the blueberries fit in her suitcase the next morning...
And me? I have to go back into the blueberry patch...probably by get more blueberries. So...what do you think? Did YOU see the change?????
We did surprise the "raspberry pickers" when we drove in the field so we could see the machine up close. I wanted Betty to see how they pick the berries...and then had to drag her away from the raspberry fields because she found some berries still on the vine....
A report: Blueberries made it home just fine. Next time I take someone to the blueberry field...I plan on asking...
Is this trip for the pleasure of picking berries
Are you going to steal...I mean...
Will you want to take these home with you?
PS...I love this woman!!!!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

A weekend of fun....

On Saturday, Steve and I met this couple in Port Angeles for a couple of days on the peninsula. Who are they? They share our grandchildren with us. Betty and Carl, Jon's parents, joined us in WA to explore and explore we did! And laughed! And prayed! And laughed! And talked!
I loved the dew in the HOH rain forest...

The paths were so amazing to walk on...
Just for the girls in Boys Town, we stopped in Forks and posed with the local celebs...then sent the pics to Betsy to show the girls....

Betty found the vacation cottage, romantically called: Storybook Cottage...AHHHHH

Headed up the Hurricane Ridge. I am not a height seeker so when we were driving in fog...I was glad and we talked about turning around but we laughed about what we would see and what we would tell others....
We went to waterfalls in the area....

We got up to the top of Hurricane ridge and we had just finished lunch when Carl and I were in the parking lot. Along came the deer...3 of them...I kept telling Carl, "turn around...." and he turned EVERY way but the "other way"...These and some of their friends were within 6 feet from us. In talking to the rangers, I asked if the deer were always here? She said..."yes and they take a few steps and pause...wait for the clicks of the camera...lift the head....pose..." and that is what they did. You only heard the clicks of the camera. People were just very quiet!!!! It was sooooo very cool. They also had a raven or two who could break into zippered coolers! Jelly stone park in real life!

Here is one of the mountain lakes...

And this is the view we saw from the top of Hurricane Ridge!

Look at the cloud...that is what we drove through....but this is what we saw....

It was so much fun!!!! WE had a blast! And we so love this couple. God has given us such a gift in Jon's parents. We look forward to the next trip...there are more places to explore!

Saturday, August 7, 2010

What shall I fear?

Life is neither what we see on the Hallmark Presentations, nor can problems or concerns be reconciled in a 30-60 minute program. Life is...well, it is life.

Our granddaughter, Mazie has been struggling with health issues since before she was born. Recently, it is with her kidney/bladder and some neurological (spinal cord) problems. Yesterday, Mazie was put into the hospital again. Betsy writes a blog and she has some information about some of the specifics ( This morning, again very early, I was awakened to blog about what is happening in my life...however... This is not about Mazie. It's not about Betsy and Jon or Simon. It's not about me. It's about God's voice heard clearly through a friend.

I had been helping with a conference at our church for the last 2 days. Mazie's "big" appointment was on Friday morning. Before the conference began yesterday, Betsy called with the results from their appointment to the neurosurgeon. It has seemed like it has been a long time coming and the results, although not what you would want for your little granddaughter, were promising. Then, Betsy texted me later in the day that they were putting Mazie in the hospital. Again.

My role in the conference was to keep the volunteers "happy"! When I heard the news, I began to cry. I left the room but was soon surrounded by people who loved me and were trying to encourage me. Everything they said, I knew to be true!

Mazie had amazing doctors who were not content until they had found out what the problem was instead of treating the symptoms and reporting's just Mazie.
Thankfully, she was in the hospital where she would be getting help.
Mazie was in God's hands and even though she was not in MY sight...she was in HIS sight.
Even if I was in Omaha, I couldn't do anything more.
God loves Mazie.
He is her protector.

See I knew all that yet, the tears kept falling. So, I decided to spend a little time in the Word. When I can't even think of where to go...I run to the Psalms. And in times of emergency, I run to the 911 of Psalms. So, off to Psalm 91:1 I went.

"Those who live in the shelter of the Most High will find rest in the shadow of the almighty. This I declare of the Lord, He alone is my refuge, my place of safety; He is my God, and I am trusting in Him..."

I have read those words over and over but the Bible on my phone is in a different translation (Living Translation) and I read them again, with the fresh breeze of the Holy Spirit surrounding me.

Now, this would be the time that I SHOULD be saying, After reading these words, my heart was at peace and I was able to praise Him. Should have, but probably wouldn't be up in the middle of the night. My tears continued to fall. I read the rest of the psalm (you really need to read really, you really need to!) My eyes kept going back to those first two verses. I was still crying. Then a friend came out of the building and stopped to talk to me. She comforted me, encouraged me, and then allowed God to speak through her. She said, "Linda, what are you afraid of?" PAUSE...then... "Linda, what do you fear?" The tears STOPPED! This question was not from my friend standing in front of me...this question was asked of my Savior....What did I fear?
I could tell you all of my concerns. I hated being so far away. I didn't like hearing all of the outcomes and realizing what Maz would have to go through. I hurt that our daughter and family had to have the medical problems. mmmmmm....what did I FEAR?

My desire in my walk with God has always been to encourage others that there is nothing that they have to fear in any situation. In everyday and extraordinary situations, I have chosen to see all of the fingerprints of God in my life and to declare them to others.

What did I have to fear? Has my Savior changed? Is He still a refuge in times of trouble? Was this hospitalization a surprise to Him? Did He blink and now His eyes were not on Mazie and her family? Had He failed me in this day? No! No! No! He is and will always be my shelter from the storms of life. He knows what is happening and is orchestrating His creation. I have no input in His amazing creation around me. I am not instrumental in anything that He does. Without me He continues to be. What do I fear? It is in Him I place my trust and in Him I find refuge and because of Him I can praise Him for His amazing, awesome love and care that He has for me. Yesterday, I heard His voice loud and clear! Not from a burning bush or after a howling storm but in the quiet voice of a dear friend. How I praise Him for using her to speak His words to me.

And now I can say...I have nothing to fear for I have a God who desires me to run to Him and He will protect me and the ones that I love. He is my shelter in the times of storm and there is no other place that I desire to find refuge. Praise Him.

Father, thank you that in every situation in our lives, we can trust in you. Keep our eyes focused on you and not the situations that surround us. Thank you that we can run to you and find refuge from the storms. Thank you for the protection you give us and the desire you have to be present in every moment of our lives. Thank you that nothing that happens in our day is a surprise to you. Thank you for loving us so much that you sent your son to be a living example of your love and care. Father, praise you for using others to speak to us, help us be sensitive to your leading and in tuned to hearing your voice. Father...praise you that we (I) have nothing to fear. In your precious name, AMEN.

Monday, August 2, 2010

100 Things About me....

If you didn't want to know 100 things about may want to skip this posting. These are in no specific order...more like random thoughts...a challenge that was set forth by my daughter, Betsy, and my friend, Merry!

1. I love Jesus. I want to know more about Him and I really want to do what pleases Him.

2. I like to keep my relationship with Steve, my husband, fresh. Now we are practicing kissing as described by romance novels. (I narrate and that seems to be very intimate...okay, Steve usually ends up laughing...even when he has been prepped on how to respond)

3. I love seeing my girls, even at ages 32 and 29. I miss them like crazy and usually can't go for longer than 3 months without touching them and talking to them face to face.

4. I am "one of those grandmothers." I love sharing pictures of Simon and Mazie, love telling stories about them, love playing with them, love making things for them...I just love them. And I am so excited that we are going to have another grandchild in November...and there will be more pictures and more stories!

5. I am blessed to have my 2 sons-in-law. They have added so much to our family and I love they way that they love our daughters.

6. I love going to seminary...I love papers and just learning!

7. I HATE acupuncture.

8. I love my massages.

9. The idea of having a dog appeals to me, but the reality of it (poop, piddles, and puke) just doesn't excite me.

10. I love where I live. I love being able to drive somewhere for an hour or two and see something that I have never seen before.

11. I love seeing starfish--I never knew they were purple and orange!

12. Aquariums are my favorite.

13. I am not excited about trying new food things. Whenever I go out, I am usually stuck on one thing because I am afraid I won't like something new.

14. I do not like to put myself out there and introduce myself to new people.

15. I don't say a word when I am in class at ACTS.

16. I am a control freak and like to be in charge because then we can do it my way.

17. I hate to clean house.

18. I love to drink coffee. I love the strength of coffee out here in the Pacific Northwest.

19. I write books all of the time in my head.

20. I love seeing how God works things out in my life.

21. I love flowers and our yard...I hate weeding it and don't even like watering it.

22. I don't take out the garbage, I think this is a man's job...along with mowing the lawn, etc.

23. I have never liked washing windows. *I think if you read this, you could figure out that the windows need to be washed, the house needs to be cleaned, and the weeds are peeping through the bark.

24. I love getting flowers.

25. Okay, I love getting gifts. I would be the last one to say, let's not give gifts this year...

26. I can be extremely jealous, especially with my time with my family.

27. I think that I could stay at home and not go out of the house for long periods of time.

28. BUT I love being with people.

29. God has given me an amazing group of friends.

30. I hate cross word puzzles.

31. I can't put a puzzle together because I can't see the pictures and would rather get a scissors and FIT the pieces.

32. I am afraid of the dark and when I am alone, I sleep with the lights on all over the house.

33. I don't balance my checking account.

34. I had a rabbit named Tigger that I really did like! But I don't want another one.

35. I can see the big picture in a project but the little details sometimes escape me.

36. I love to be creative.

37. I love sewing but hate starting a project.

38. I love to entertain and really don't see it as difficult.

39. My house's appearance has become less important since we moved to Washington.

40. I am very insecure.

41. Even though I hate to admit it...I am addicted to my Blackberry and blame my children for the new obsession.

42. I love blueberries and love picking them.

43. I like working at the funeral home with Steve. We make a good team. But I wouldn't want to work full time. :-)

44. I have to convince myself that I want to go outside in the summer but in the winter, I can't wait for summer so I can go outside.

45. I love chocolate.

46. When we go somewhere, we aren't gone long before I think I should have ice cream.

47. I miss my mom.

48. I am glad that my sister and I are good friends.

49. I love being good friends with Jon's parents. We enjoy each other's company and look forward to spending time together.

50. I love decorating for Christmas but usually have had to convince my family that it is fun to put a tree up in every room of the house.

51. At Christmas I have several groups of people over to the house...the funeral home ladies and some dear ladies from our church whom I love very much are my favorites. Oh and the soup supper for our small group...I like to have people over...

52. I like to paint...walls not canvas...instead of washing them.

53. I love going to the water and just looking out to see what I can see. We have seen orcas, seals, starfish, crabs, clams, and most recently....a rat!

54. Looking at Mount Baker never ceases to thrill me...we can see it from our house. It is so majestic and a reminder of the awesomeness of God.

55. I am scared to death of height...therefore, traveling to Mount Baker is not a fun outing for me.

56. A perfect vacation? Water, sand, a book, and no rushing around.

57. Went to Hawaii and didn't love it. I liked it. We saw a lot...didn't love it.

58. I wish more friends could see where we live.

59. My one regret with my mom...she didn't get to see where we lived before she died.

60. I am so impressed with Boy's Town and what they do for kids.

61. I don't miss being a Speech Pathologist.

62. I love being retired but wish I would have something that I could work when I want, have unlimited vacation time, decide when I have had enough....

63. I love traveling.

64. I love to read...usually historical novels or light murder mysteries.

65. I love Leverage, NCSI (and NCIS-LA), and the types of shows that you have to figure out who "done it" or contains a good con!

66. I have nightmares if I watch too gory a show/movie.

67. I love to go to mindless, predictable movies so I don't have to think but do like a good con artist plot!!!

68. I love burnt hot dogs and burnt marshmallows for s'mores but have tried to get a golden brown marshmallow.

69. My mind is going pretty much non stop when I am awake.

70. I am so thankful that God has given me my husband. I am not sure anyone else could put up with me like he does.

71. I love our church.

72. I love living close to Steve's sister and husband.

73. I HATE the cold. and I will complain about the cold.

74. I LOVE the heat...and I won't complain about how hot it is. It gives me justification to complain when it is cold.

75. I would love to have a favorite color but just can't decide on what color that would be.

76. New adventures excite and frighten me at the same time.

77. For about 5 days, I thought I crossed the line and thought I loved exercising. It didn't last.

78. I have a hard time staying with anything.

79. I do not like to do the same thing over and over. One type of craft isn't going to work for me. Been there, done that is my motto with crafts, etc.

80. Knitting did not relax me.

81. I would love to paint pictures but the pictures in my head, never turn out on paper.

82. I love taking pictures. I love old rusty, weathered buildings.

83. I think that cemeteries are really neat and I would like going through them.

84. I am a horrible speller.

85. Math isn't much better...

86. I love to talk and love descriptive words.

87. I love word pictures and authors who can make the print come alive. When I read a book, it is always a motion picture in my mind.

88. I like reading classic novels like...The Secret Garden, The Count of Monte Christo, The Little Princess...

89. When I taught, my favorite age was high school.

90. I am always surprised when it is pointed out that I am shorter than someone. I think that I am the same height as everyone around me.

91. I am rebellious.

92. I didn't like turning 60...okay, I hated it and was depressed about it.

93. I love snorkeling and looking at everything that is under the water.

94. I have lots of unrealistic fears that no one knows about. And some that everyone knows about.

95. I am allergic to broccoli and bananas. Nobody gets that.

96. I want to be someone to whom others look up. I don't want to be a perfect model, just someone that when watching my life, you can learn from me.

97. I liked collecting all kinds of things (chickens, pigs, antiques...) and now I don't know what to do with them.

98. I am very content in the life that God has given me. I am thankful for the trials and the blessings. It is in the trials that I have grown, and the blessings have come from those same trials.

99. I have tried many times to pick a "life" verse in the Bible. One that in a nutshell describes how I feel, how I know that God loves me...I can't, I love just way too many verses.

100. I would love to memorize Scripture, but I can't, never could, and I can't remember the words to songs either...I have chosen to get very intimate with my concordance.

100 things about me. It's not a complete picture of me...but it's a glimpse of who I am, what I like, what I hate....

If I could only say one thing about me...I think it would have to be that I love seeing what God has in store for me for my life. I love His creativity and His creation. I love knowing that no matter what happens in my life, He is faithful. I look to Him for direction and when I choose His path...He takes me on a very interesting pathway. I love knowing that He loves me...all of me, my character, my quirks, and every aspect of my life that only He is aware of.

I love what He has done in my life. I love what He has to do in my life, I am not done, He will change me and mold me into the woman that He wants me to be.