Saturday, January 10, 2009

400 Posts - How Can it Be?

The dawn of a new year -- 2009. We're off to a roaring start.




I have never had a "word for the year", as I have been reading that several of you have. I think it's a great thing to hear a word from the Lord and make it yours for the year. I didn't really ask the Lord for this word, but it came into my consciousness with no doubt that it is to be my word for the year - or really for the rest of my life: flexible. Flexibility is rather the story of my life. My plans have to change in a heartbeat, it seems.

Not only do I need this attribute in my personal daily life, but I need it in my body - I need to be in better shape so that when I get down on the floor with the little ones, I don't have to go through such gyrations to get back up.

I decided to do a word search for this word in The Word. I really didn't expect to find it. I checked The Message, and there it was:

Matthew 12:3-8 (The Message)

3-5 Jesus said, "Really? Didn't you ever read what David and his companions did when they were hungry, how they entered the sanctuary and ate fresh bread off the altar, bread that no one but priests were allowed to eat? And didn't you ever read in God's Law that priests carrying out their Temple duties break Sabbath rules all the time and it's not held against them?

6-8 "There is far more at stake here than religion. If you had any idea what this Scripture meant—'I prefer a flexible heart to an inflexible ritual'—you wouldn't be nitpicking like this. The Son of Man is no lackey to the Sabbath; he's in charge."

I want that more than ever this year - Him to be in charge. So I will work this year at not being so set in my ways, so inflexible, so sure that I am right.


This is my 400th post. I have no contest to offer. I'm sorry! Some of you reach your 400th post long before this - I have been blogging for 2 1/2 years. Some of you post every day - I don't know how you do it. Any way you look at it, that's a lot of words and a lot of pictures. And a lot of new friends and a lot of fun.

Hang on to your hats - this is going to be a wild ride - no rhyme or reason, no theme, just lots of catching up. I know - I'm supposed to be telling you about our anniversary trip to Estes Park. That will be next - don't worry. I know you're worried!

The twins will have two parties - it doesn't make any difference to them that their first one is tomorrow, 4 days after their actual birthday. Then next week-end we hope to have an open house for all our church friends who have been so supportive during this amazing year.

Kev and Sema wanted us to wait till they got home to celebrate, but Kristen is going out of town that week-end, so we'll just have to have a third party, won't we? Speaking of Kev and Sema - the phone rang at 2:00 a.m. the other night (morning?). Remember awhile back when the riots were going on in Kenya, and some of you dear friends sent money to Sema to send to her family? The kids have used their spending money for food and transportation since they've been there - sharing with the rest of the family. Things are much higher than they were 6 years ago when they were last there, and they were out of the money they had taken. The phone was breaking in and out, so I asked him to hang up and e-mail me.

It was noon there in Mombasa and Kev was hoping I could wire him some money before the money gram office closed at 3:00 in the afternoon - which was 5:00 a.m. here. I happened to have enough cash on hand, so I pulled on some clothes, went out into the cold night, and headed for the grocery store. I should have called before I did so, because it turns out there's nobody available to do a Western Union transaction until 7:00 a.m. So another e-mail to Kenya winged its way telling Kev they'd have to wait another day, because of the huge time difference. I got a message earlly the next day that they had received the money and were off to the house on the beach that her parents are building - a little tiny bit at a time. It's obviously not completed because they're sleeping in a tent. I don't suppose I'll hear from them until they get back to the city - who knows when.



This not-very-good picture of Maizie makes me happy, in spite of the tears of one of the babes (I'm not sure which!) I am so very glad that I took all of the girlies to see her several times. It not only made Maizie happy, but brought joy to all of the residents of her assisted living home. I always went at lunch time so they'd all be in the cafeteria and could enjoy seeing the girls. I only wish I'd gone more often.

After the nice visit my sis and I had with Maizie on Friday evening, I returned on Saturday afternoon. My hope to see her daughter was realized, and we had a nice long visit. But Maizie wasn't doing well that day. She was aware, though, that she was "having a very bad day." She was taken to Hospice shortly after that. I went up once more and found her to be sound asleep and much more emaciated than she was last week-end. I left a note for her family, and have not returned. It amazes me that she is still alive. What an incredibly strong person she is. I hope she goes Home soon, because this is not living. I know that Jesus and Joe are waiting with open arms.

Tuesday was to be a fun day - I was going to lunch with my two dear friends from high school - yes, high school back in Nebraska. We are blessed to be able to connect at least once or twice a year for lunch. I was just getting ready to leave the house to run some errands prior to lunch when my phone rang. It was one of my friends with some devastating news. Our other friend's stepdaughter had been found dead in her apartment in Denver - the victim of carbon monoxide poisoning. What a horribly freak occurrence - what sadness. She was working on her master's degree in international studies at Denver University - the same program that Condoleeza Rice graduated from years ago. She was to leave for Israel tomorrow for an internship, working in the human rights area. Her family was a bit fearful of her going to such a troubled part of the world. She had gone back to her apartment after the holidays to study and read and get ready for her adventure. Who could ever imagine that her safe haven would become her death trap.

The funeral was today. This is the second funeral of a bright, beautiful, young person with unlimited potential I have experienced in the last 6 months (see here and here). I come away from these occasions wondering how one so young could have accomplished so much in such a short time. I also come away with hope for the future if there are others like them. I believe there are. These two articles tell what happened and a bit more about her. Please put Lauren's family on your prayer list.




On to happier subjects -- Little Miss Katie was helping me with the dishes the other night --




It brought back the memory of a picture I took about 30 years ago -- glad I could locate it! We didn't have a dishwasher in those days.



Remember the pretty little bird cafe my dad designed and built for us? He designed it specifically to keep the squirrels out. I caught this fun picture story the other day -- this fat little squirrel was really frustrated as he attempted to swipe the birds' food. He was at the back first, then came around to the front with his nose heading for the food.



Suddenly - - -


.
He kept trying and trying - his body language said it all. He was frustrated! His tail was swishing back and forth furiously.



He should have been content to do what these other two did - enjoy the bounty the birds kicked out of their restaurant.




And finally -- are you relieved? I have discovered a new author that I really like. I hope the rest of her books are as good as the first one I found. I just finished In Search of Eden by Linda Nichols. Am I the last one to find her? Check her out, if you haven't already.

One more thing - I have a song for the year. It is one of my favorites by the Gaither Vocal Band and had hoped to find their rendition on YouTube. But it's not out there by them - I found an inferior version, but don't want to put that one up. So I'll just give you the words. Great song! I live in HOPE that I can actually live up to these words.

I'm not gonna worry, I'm not gonna fret.
I'm not gonna speculate or contemplate on how it might have been.
I'm not gonna worry, He's got the whole things in His hands.
I won't let it haunt me, I won't let it win.
I'm not gonna ruminate or meditate on how it might have been.
I'm gonna release it, He's got the whole thing in His hands.
Maybe lately I started to resign,
But here it goes, God only knows
It might just ease mind.
I'm not gonna worry, I'm not gonna fret,
I'm just gonna wait and see and in between give thanks for what I get.
I'm not gonna worry , He's got the whole thing in His hands.

I'm not gonna worry I'm not gonna fret,
I'm not gonna speculate or contemplate what hasn't happened yet.
I'm not gonna worry, He's got the whole thing in His hands.



20 comments:

Jess said...

Thank you so much for your kind comment today... blog friends do mean alot. And congrats on your 400th...I'm still inthe hundreds...lol

Lots of love to you and yours. Enjoy those twins...they are so cute, and the fun is just beginning... trust me... Emmy is 20 months and a ball of fun... there is never a dull moment. I could never imagine doing it with twins!

Have a great week ahead
Jess

Needled Mom said...

Oh my goodness, Dawn.....400 posts. THAT is quite and achievement. You do it so well too.

I was so saddened to hear about the death of your friend's stepdaughter. It is such a tragedy when a young person with so much potential is taken so early. I will keep them in my prayers.

I do like your word and think it is a great one for as flexible as you are. Who would have ever thought that our lives would have to be as flexible as they are at our age?

Prayers continue for Maizie and her family. These are difficult times for everyone.

I'll bet that you will be so glad to have Sema and Kev back home. It does sound like they will have a lot of stories to share.

Your new sond is great. I keep trying to tell myself that fretting is no use. What is it that they say...95% of what we worry about is never necessary. Anymore I pray that I will just be granted what I need to handle a situation when it arises.

Have a wonderful week.

Linda said...

I have enjoyed catching up with all your "doins" Dawn. First - I'm so sorry to hear about your friend's daughter. I cannot imagine - it is absolutely heartbreaking.
I think you've picked an excellent word. It would work for the rest of my life too. I often think that it doesn't make sense to plan ahead even for a day - it seems something inevitably comes up to change everything around. We are in that season of life where there are three generations of family that all need us at one time or another. Flexibility is key - physically too. If you find the perfect exercises that you can do in about twenty minutes - let me know! I have the walking down but know I need to do some sort of strenght training/flexibility exercises too. I just don't want to spend half my day exercising!
I have not read Linda Nichols. I love hearing about new, good writers.
I'm rereading "Out to Canaan". I just felt like a warm, cozy read and have been reading Jan Karon. I seem to be going backwards in the series. I thought I would just read the Christmas one and ended up reading a few more.
Happy Birthday to the two sweet birthday girls. You will certainly have fun celebrating.
I don't know how many posts I've written. I will have to check and see. I'm not good about keeping track of that.
Have a good week Dawn. Praying the kids have a safe trip home.

Diane@Diane's Place said...

I had to go look then come back here: I've got 453 posts to date. At the end of this month I'll have been blogging for 3 years. Hard to believe that it's been that long but it's true.

Congrats on reaching 400 posts. Hope you're around for many more. :o)

You did indeed ramble and share a lot of news. This is the kind of post I like best, I think.

Have a good week, Dawn.

Love and hugs,

Diane

SentimentsbyDenise said...

A full heart indeed! I'm so glad you post from your heart on your blog - we truly see the person you are: caring, loving, a prayer warrior, striving to be what God wants you to be. Thank you for that.
Have you thought anymore about attending GA in FL this June? I would love to meet you in person! It would be so fun to share together! If there is a way possible, I hope it can be. I'll be praying that way!

Maine Mom said...

Happy 400th post! What a beautiful picture to start off your post with.

Flexibility is definitely needed with little ones around!

That is neat that you are able to get together with high school friends once or twice a year for lunch. I'm sorry you ended up going to a funeral together instead of lunch this time.

Hootin' Anni said...

I just viewed the sweetest ever birthday photos....below this blog entry!!! Awwwwwwwww, makes me tear up to see such wonderful works of love of a couple and the pride of Grandma Dawn!!!

And now, this entry. It's great, but I really don't know where to begin. I do love the sunrise/sunset photos of a new year. But ohhhhhh, the photo of the twins with Mazie....just super!!

And ya, I remember those days without a dishwasher...did your kids make it a game of spraying each other? Ours did. LOL

And I love your little kitchen helper...simply sweet as can be.

Happy Monday dear lady...hope your week treats you well.

Mimi said...

enjoyed catching up with your happenings...
the word Flexible is a good one for many of us...I appear to be much more flexible (on the surface than I really am inside)
I know you will be happy when Kevin and Sema return to you in the USA.

so sorry to hear of your friends stepdaughter's sudden death...

I wish for you a very blessed 2009...

Penless Thoughts said...

Your word Flexibility is part of the Unity post I did. You are very flexible, Dawn, that is for sure.

I noticed you took down your prayer request off Hearts!!! Wondering why?

Can't believe the babies are 1 year old. It's been quite a year for your guys and you've weathered it well.
Susan

Simply Heart And Home said...

Dawn,

I am finally catching up after the holidays. I pray you and your dear family have a lovely New Year.

And Happy Birthday to the twins. Time does fly!

And for a bit of news, I am hoping to have a giveaway every month. Tomorrow I will post the particulars for January and I hope you will join us for the fun.

Blessings

Cheryl said...

Enjoyed catching up on your life. Being flexible is rather important, but not always something we desire. Blessings and enjoy those babies!

Mary said...

Dawn,

My condolences on the passing of your friend's daughter. Very sad. An entire family was lost here in December from carbon monoxide poisoning. It is really a silent killer.

Love the photos of the girlies and the one of Kristen and her brother doing dishes. Brandon washed dishes at New Year's dinner and it's something he hadn't done since he was little. They have a dishwasher, but he didn't seem to mind.

Take care, my friend. Glad you enjoyed my memories of my bike.

Blessings,
Mary

Becky said...

Lots of news! Congrats on your 400th post. Wow!

And I am so sorry for the loss of that beautiful young woman.

Happy birthday to the girls (previous post).

And about my "breakfast" casserole ... we eat it every Christmas too, with cinnamon rolls. TRADITION!!

Robin said...

This was a fun post to read Dawn!

400 Posts - Congratulations - that is very cool. I need to check out how many I have.

Flexible is a great word. I have a feeling that is my word too. And I don't even do the word thing! It seems God is always asking us to be flexible isn't He? Sometimes that's the hardest thing of all do be.

What a sad story about that beautiful young girl. Just doesn't make any sense. I hope her family is doing okay. I don't suppose you are ever the same after that kind of a loss.

I'm so glad Kevin and Sema are finally in Africa. How wonderful it must be for them to be with her family. I hope the Lord blesses her full to overflowing!

Judith said...

Thank you again for some great pictures. You have chosen a word that can help you grow in many ways.

Heartbrake needs heart felt prayers. Will pray for the family and friends that young lady leaves behind.

Judith said...

Oops, I think I mispelled heartbreak.

Judith said...

My face is turning red. I just misspelled misspelled.

Sharon Lynne said...

Quite a post. My emotions traveled up and down and up. I'm so sad for the family that lost their daughter. But your poem at the end of your post was comforting. We simply CANNOT figure things out. All things are in God's hands. We have no choice but to trust Him.

I loved all the pictures!

Hootin' Anni said...

Hi Again, Dawn!

I just posted where I found the sweats for $2.99 today on my blog.

Happy Wednesday to you.

groovyoldlady said...

Beautiful post, Dawn. I got teary reading about poor Lauren - made me think of Michael.

What a comfort it is to know the Lord...