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Fun Fact Friday: Happy as a Clam at High Tide

​Ever wonder what “happy as a clam” meant?  Me either.  But I found the meaning and I’m sharing it just incase you did ever wonder.  Because that’s what I do.  I answer questions that no one asks.  😉

The full expression is “Happy as a clam at high tide.” At high tide, they’re safely covered in water.  They are blissful, or the closest clams can be to happiness, I would imagine.  But at low tide, people (& critters I would suppose) go clam digging.  Then they are no longer happy & blissful clams.   
Consider your unasked question answered.  😚

Point to ponder while you wander…Joy of the Lord is strength. Joy keeps you strong even when you aren’t situationally  happy as a clam. 

Turning a Bad Night Around

Last New Year’s Eve I was supposed to hang out with someone, they bailed on me last minute. I was irate.

New Year’s Eve is my favorite holiday…so I did not want to stay home and mope.

But what was I going to do?

Go dancing?

Nah.

Find a party?

Nah.

Call other friends?

Uh…maybe.

Go celebrate with Nanny and Pops?

Yes!

So I stopped at CVS and bought some party hats and sparkling grape juice and showed up to celebrate with them completely unannounced.

Here’s some of the fun we had…

I didn’t know it then, but this was their last time ringing in the new year. A few short weeks later Nanny went into the hospital and was diagnosed with stage 4 lung cancer. Two months later I lost them both.

I am so glad I chose to interrupt their quiet evening and keep them up til midnight; singing and dancing around their house, and laughing with them.

Point to ponder while you wander… Please take time to celebrate milestones. Be silly! Enjoy the people in your life. Those memories of giggles and sillyness strengthen and buoy you in the sad times. Trust me on that.

Cheers to great memories! And Happy 80th Birthday, Nanny!

 

A Bowl of Cherries

“Life is just a bowl of cherries.”

I’ve never understood why this quip is used in sarcasm or as a way of saying life is unpleasant without sounding like a whiner. It’s more like they’re saying life is a bowl of cherry pits.

I think the people who started this bad reputation for the cherries needed a perspective shift. 

Maybe they chose cherries because they didn’t like that cherries have pits. Maybe they couldn’t afford to buy cherries. Maybe people say it because you can only get good Michigan cherries once a year.

Whatever the reason, cherries don’t deserve that woe is me reputation. I mean just look at how joyful they look? And yummy! Mmm.

Point to ponder while you wander…The Word says…as a man thinks so is he. Meaning how you see the world will determine who you become in the world.

Perspective matters. 

Are you choosing to focus on the pits and stems (negative aspects of life) or are you choosing to enjoy the cherries (the small little sweet things that happen every day)?


Today is THE Day

​”This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it!” Psalm 118:24 NKJV

I’ll be honest, the past few months it has been a struggle to make it through the day without losing my temper, crying, or both. I’ve gone inward in my grief, and tried to shut out the world. 

So far, in my darkened room this month, I’ve watched the first 4 seasons of Criminal Minds on Netflix.

When you are sad and depressed, Criminal Minds is probably not the show to binge watch, FYI.

I had just begun to process life without my Dad, when my Nana was diagnosed with lung cancer in January. Then I lost both her and my Papa in March. It sucks.

I love them. I enjoyed spending time with them. They were my people.

On top of that my grandparents were my security blanket in a lot of ways. Their home was always a safety zone for me. I lived there when I was a baby, spent summers there as a child, and lived there when I was unemployed. 

It was my home base. I was there with my cousins for every holiday beginning with Papa Day (St. Patrick’s Day), ending with Christmas, and every random one in between. If life sucked I could go there and be safe. I went there on sunny summer days to play Scrabble with Nana on the Deck. I went there before blizzards to make sure they had what they needed. I went there just to hug them.

I not only lost my people, I lost my home.

Normally their house was where I went when life belted me, and now in the hardest loss I’ve ever faced, I can’t go where I’ve always gone for comfort.

I know I’m supposed to be comforted by Holy Spirit, and I am. If I didnt have Him, I wouldn’t have been capable of being there for them in their last days. I would have been weeping constantly and been of zero use to anyone. He is amazing. I still feel His presence and have the peace Jesus brings. But I still feel blah about life right now.

I don’t know how to move forward.

I don’t want to accept the new normal.

I want to sit in my darkened room and watch Criminal Minds. 

I don’t want to miss them every day. 

I don’t want to feel how much this hurts.

I don’t want to think about them not being at future events.

I don’t want my heart to hurt because it’s 4th of July weekend and there will be no cookout. There will not be hide and seek with my cousin’s kiddos in the back yard. The back yard is blooming with her flowers but she is not there. His yard has been mowed but not by him.

Death sucks. I’m so glad Jesus beat the crap out of death and was resurrected. I’m so glad Jesus is alive! Because it means I will see my people again…and they will be happy and healthy and free.

But it doesn’t change that I need to feel the feelings and deal with the waves of grief that are drowning me in sadness. Even though I don’t really know how to move forward, and I’m not sure I want to…I know I need to.

They loved me and would hate that I’m so sad that I’m wasting their favorite sunshine filled days in a darkened room.

I have no regrets. I was there with them when they left this world. That was a gift. I spent consistent time with them when I had them here. That was also a gift. 

I could go on here about how sad I am right now and how many times I broke down crying while typing this…but that isn’t the point I want to make.

The point is that I will miss them forever at every event. That will not change. 

I need to choose to feel those feelings and choose to deal with them. I need to choose continue to live my life, instead of choosing to hide out. I need to choose joy. Because the joy of the Lord is my strength. And I need that strength to get through this time.

Point to ponder while you wander…

This is the day the Lord has made; we will rejoice and be glad in it!” Psalm 118:24

I believe that each day is a gift. Living this belief is a choice. Being determined to declare that no matter what this day brings I WILL rejoice and be glad in it. #joyisstrength

Musical Monday: Because of You

I had intentions of a completly different (and fun) song today, but I felt like I needed to post Because of You by Kelly Clarkson. The video is powerful, please watch it before reading on.

I have 2 words of encouragement today; one for the kids who feel this way and one for the parents. Both are encouraging so please keep reading, and remember there’s always hope.

Message 1: For the Kids
I understand the feelings behind this song. As kids, we suffered from our parents bad choices. Those choices may still be affecting you now. If that’s you today, I’m praying for you to forgive your parents and any other care giver who hurt you.

This forgiveness releases you from the bondage of the past. This forgiveness is so you can move forward and be whole. This forgiveness is the very thing Jesus was talking about in Matthew 6.

If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. But if you refuse to forgive others, your Father will not forgive your sins.” Matthew 6:14-15

If you hold on to this anger and hurt it becomes bitterness! That’s why Jesus demanded you to forgive others. Not as a law…but as a freedom for YOU from bondage.

Unforgiveness hurts you. Poisons you. NOT the person you’re holding a grudge against.

Please hear my heart here!

I watched someone I love dearly eaten alive by bitterness towards his father. And I’ll be honest, his hatred was justified. His father was a cruel man that came far too close to beating his mother to death. This is horrendous. No child should have to see that!

I also watched bitterness taint the most joyful, hilarious, and downright blast of a woman I ever knew. I watched this amazing woman age rapidly after she lost her joy. She became sullen, negative, and bitter. People began to avoid her, which multiplied the bitterness into cancer. And I lost her.

A joyful cheerful heart brings healing to both body and soul. But the one whose heart is crushed struggles with sickness and depression.” Proverbs 17:27 TPT

Don’t let yourself be tainted. Don’t let yourself grow bitterness. Confess your anger and bitterness to God. Speak out loud that you forgive whomever your bitter towards, whether they are still alive or not. Whetherthey deserve it or not. And anytime that hurt/anger/resentment/disgust/sadness begins to rise…you say it again. And you keep saying it until it stops rising up.

Eyes that focus on what is beautiful bring joy to the heart, and hearing a good report refreshes and strengthens the inner being.” Proverbs 15:30 TPT

God NEVER wanted you to be hurt or have a rough childhood. But people make choices that affect others. He DOES want to heal you. He wants you to be whole.

The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy. I have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.” John 10:10 NKJV

Please forgive so you can be free!

On an a personal note about my parental units…I love my parents, but they are flawed. They made mistakes and bad choices that handicapped me in some ways. But I have forgiven them for that crap, and moved forward into adulthood. I yearn to see them become all they were designed to be. When I forgave them, it felt like a million pounds was lifted from my shoulders. I felt free. And for the first time I was able to love my parents right where they were at. I was able to see them clearly, with God’s eyes.

Honor your father and mother.” This is the first commandment with a promise:  If you honor your father and mother, “things will go well for you, and you will have a long life on the earth.”” Ephesians 6:2-3 NLT

Message 2: For the Parents

So I tell you, every sin and blasphemy can be forgiven—except blasphemy against the Holy Spirit, which will never be forgiven.” Matthew 12:31 (See also Mark 3:28)

You made mistakes as a parent. No one parents without making mistakes. You need to forgive yourself. I’m praying for you to come to the place where you choose to forgive yourself, even if you don’t deserve it.

If you are caught in a web of unforgiveness/bitterness for what happened to you as a child and guilt for repeating the cycle, please please please, forgive your parents and forgive yourself.

So now there is no condemnation for those who belong to Christ Jesus. And because you belong to him, the power of the life-giving Spirit has freed you from the power of sin that leads to death.” Romans 8:1-2

The man I mentioned above who hated his father became an alcoholic who beat his wife. He repeated the cycle. Years later, he refused to receive the forgiveness of his ex-wife and children. He refused to forgive himself. The guilt he felt about repeating the cycle became self-hatred and he died at a mere 60 years old. I lost him. It was a devastating loss of a man with the kindest softest heart, a generous people person, and a jokester who made me belly laugh more times than I can count. My heart broke that he couldn’t forgive himself, and couldn’t receive healing before he died.

If you’re reading this it’s not too late for you! Come to Jesus and confess your mistakes and receive His forgiveness and forgive yourself. You getting help and becoming whole is the best way to show your kids it’s possible. Healing is possible. Restoration is possible. Breaking the cycle is possible!

If there is a chance for reconciliation and restoration of relationship, you should offer an apology, without expctation. This could help THEM heal. But understand that they may not be ready or able to forgive you. That’s okay. You should still forgive yourself.

Even if you don’t deserve it, forgive yourself anyway. Even if the situation is bad enough that your children can’t or won’t forgive you, forgive yourself anyway. Even if they are repeating your mistakes, forgive yourself anyway. Then pray for them to repeat your good choices, to seek help and to forgive themselves as well.

Point to ponder while you wander…”Let all that I am praise the Lord; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. Let all that I am praise the Lord; may I never forget the good things he does for me. He forgives all my sins and heals all my diseases. He redeems me from deathand crowns me with love and tender mercies. He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!” Psalm 103:1-5 NLT

Simple Joys

Swinging for the sky…
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Blowing wishes in the wind…
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Springtime Roadtrippin’

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Spring’s here! Car’s loaded. Sun’s shining. Sunroof’s open. Window’s down. Oldies playing. Roadtrippin’ time.