Saturday, December 31, 2011

Another year ends.....

I've been looking at my live feed and see that people are visiting from far away places.   So on this New Year's Eve.....if you visit my blog, please leave a comment so I'll know and tell me how you found me if you've never commented.  Just for fun!  

Another year goes into the memory bank to be visited on occasion.... gave us your best shot!

A time of constant and of change......and so this seemed most fitting to me....

Ecclesiastes 3: 1-8

1To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
 2A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
 3A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
 4A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
 5A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
 6A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
 7A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
 8A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

When I said goodbye to 2010, I never dreamed what 2011 would hold for us, both good and bad.
So it was with relative innocence that I bade goodbye to 2010 and walked into a new year unaware of the obstacle course it would hold.

I think my tribute to 2007 was the best so I wanted to let you go back and read it if you want.....the more things change, the more they stay the same!  

Just a few highlights
Matt started, built and moved into his new home

A wedding was in the planning

Mama moved down the street to a new apartment

The Flat Princess paid us a visit

There was a bridal shower

Sentimental wedding things

A wedding

Friends moved

A new friend visited from a far away land....

Miracles happened

A first birthday

Singing in the rain

This boy didn't get to make a trip in 2011, which made us very sad

Didn't see this one either....

Way too few beach days

The annual friends' birthday celebration




A sad loss in our family.......a new life in our neighborhood.

Sorrow and joy mingled.

Such a few of the things that happened.....just a taste of 2011.

I wrote the following post some time ago.....but I took it down.  I'm printing it now because it's time.  Keep few secrets and do not neglect to speak the truth, because not being transparent leads to losing friends and losing faith in in 2012, let's just be transparent.

Some of the following is taken from Wikipedia.....
The opposite of transparency is incomprehensibility.
Antonyms of transparency include: secrecy, opacity, opaqueness, under-reporting, underplaying, putting a spin on it...

Transparency is the enemy of surprises.
Transparency is the enemy of hypocrisy.
Transparency is the friend of safety, quality, justice, fairness, ...
Transparency is the best deodorant.
Transparency is the best antidote for gullibility.

Possibly my favorite part of this explanation of transparency is Transparency is the enemy of hypocrisy.

I know people who work in retail who must carry a transparent purse....although most probably don't carry Prada bags.

You can see through it.  Whatever is in the bag is seen by all........keeps you honest.

Many times people say things like should be completely transparent, we will be completely transparent, This process shall absolutely be transparent.........and yet you can't see the transparency through the silence or the changes in what has been said....or the quickness to blame someone else so you don't have to be transparent. 

Oh, yea, and when everyone is transparent, elephants disappear......makes walking around in the room easier.

It is incomprehensible to continue saying you are transparent and not follow through!

2011 is over.......we have a brand new chance to start anew. 

For our country, I pray we get a new president and turn this place around. 

For my children, I pray love and happiness and a relationship with your Savior.

Thanks to my family and there are so many of you!  

Thank you to my dear husband for always putting up with me no matter how crazy I get.  

So I bid farewell to 2011 and welcome 2012

Dear gussie, I look a year older!  Maybe there's plastic surgery in my 2012....Just kidding honey, someone get the smelling salts!  

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

A love story for a busy holiday.....

This season is sneaking up so fast that I just really don't have time to blog so I'll give you a little love story to tide you over.....yes, I know you hurt when I don't blog. 

The superhero and I dated for two and a half years before we married and during all that time I never got a love letter.  Not one single one.  I wanted one......I may or may not have asked for one, I checked the love letter.

But on occasion I would find a little post it note with the words I love you and his initials.  

I accepted that as my love letter.  

As you can plainly see, my love note/letter......after sixteen plus years.....had grown dingy and worn.  I left it on the counter, but I could not throw it away.  

One day, I walked in the office and saw him writing on post it notes, one right after the other.  I asked what he was writing and he handed them to me.  

My sweetheart was writing love notes/letters.  He wanted me to have new ones.  

I love that man of mine!

I wish you all the Merriest of Christmases and pray the peace that Christ brought to earth dwell in your hearts!

To my blog friends that I have addresses for, you got a real card!  

Friday, December 9, 2011

Smelling like the sheep

Our good friend and pastor recently went from preaching into full time missions work.  Bob has been in the ministry for 40 + years and I have no doubt will be working for the Lord until he goes to be with Him, many, many years from now.

This is the reception honoring of both Bob and Betsy....cause we all know that he couldn't have done what he's done without her!

Here is one of the things I love so much about their family.  Bob and Betsy have five children who are all Christians....married to Christians.....raising children to know Christ and become Christians.  All five have completed college degrees.  If that were the end of their testimony I would say AMEN.....but it isn't.  They managed to teach their children the most important things in life while ministering and showing Christ to many others.


Here they are before the reception 

Some pictures from the reception

About two hundred people attended.....a testament to the love and care he has shown to all who know him.

He and Betsy even had an official day set aside by the county commission.

Several others talked about Bob and Betsy, giving testimony of what they have meant to them over the years.

But the moment that touched my heart most was when this son spoke about his father and his pastor

The thing that stood out in his speech was when he referred to his dad being a shepherd who smells like his sheep. Everyone laughed a little at the remark, but as I thought about it, it is so true!  Bob is a shepherd who smells like his sheep.  The more that phrase went through my mind, I came to understand it to be a huge compliment and a tribute to his dad.

We first got to know Bob when our almost 26 year old was in the 4th grade.  That's the year Russell and I married and I started going to Matt's school for various things.  Matt went to the school associated with Bob's church and I noticed some things about Bob......he did whatever needed doing.  If something needed wiring, he wired it....if something needed moving, he moved it....if the church needed to borrow chairs or bleachers from another church, he took his truck and got them...... never noticed anyone he couldn't work along side.  Like a good shepherd he did come along side any time he was needed.  The point is, he spent a lot of time with his flock and nothing that needed doing was beneath him.  When the school needed a headmaster, he stepped in and took the position......... more than once during the years....... along with preaching and pastoring (which in my mind are two distinctly different things).  He was headmaster when I started attending school functions.  He smelled like his sheep.

Now I don't know much about sheep, but I do know that all we like sheep have gone astray.....Isaiah 53:6.  I don't know much about shepherds, but I do know Jesus said I am the good shepherd.  I know my own and my own know me....John 10:14   Jesus came and lived among His people.....He put his arms around His flock...he was THE Shepherd.  Our pastors are also shepherds who work under THE Shepherd.

A shepherd who smells like his sheep is one who is right there in the trenches of life with his congregation. Who is there and cares and knows when any one of his flock is hurting or celebrating.  

When Matt was in high school, we moved our church membership to the church Bob pastored and got to know Bob as our pastor and preacher, shepherd and friend.  We grew to love not only him, but his family.  Family man..... that label can just be tacked on with the rest.....along with chaplain for the Sheriff's department and work with the local rescue mission and probably lots of other things that I don't know about.

Long before we came to be members, Bob had started missions work in Uganda.   Over the years, it was evident that his heart was in Uganda and with the people there.  The Ugandan's became his sheep, part of his flock.  He will be spending more time there now as he goes into full time missions work.

And just as he always has, I'm sure there...thousands of miles away from home......Bob will continue to smell like his sheep, as he leads people to know THE SHEPHERD.


After note......

After I wrote this blog our local news paper had this article on the front page.