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Archive for the ‘life’ Category

There’s something very satisfying about new beginnings,  a new year is a great time to start something new or try again at something you may not have achieved in the past.   It’s always refreshing to have a clean slate and a second chance.

With that in mind, I’ve been thinking a lot about what I want to accomplish in the coming year,  and more importantly what would God have me to do?  The obvious comes to mind, spend more time in His Word and in prayer, minister to those He brings across my path,  strive to be a better wife, mom, and grandmother, and take better care of my health.  But, what about the things that aren’t so obvious?  

What does God want to do in my life this coming year?    Am I willing to step out of my comfort zone (a place I don’t like to leave) and follow wherever He leads?  Do I really want Him to show me all the ugliness inside that needs His cleansing touch?  Am I willing to lay down my life, to put aside my wants and needs in order to do His will? 

 These are the questions I’ve been pondering the past few days, and the answer is a resounding Yes!  I don’t want to look back over 2009 when it ends and find that I’m still the same person I was when it began.  I want God to do a work in me, to change me day by day to be more like Jesus, no matter how much it hurts or how inconvenient it may be.  I want to be in the center of His will,  it’s the best place to be!

Have a great Sunday!

Love, Velvia

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new-year-clock

The countdown to the New Year is on,  in approximately 4 hours it will be 2009.  How can it be possible that a year has passed since we rang in 2008?  It never ceases to amaze me how quickly time passes,  are there times when you wish you could slow things down a bit?  I know I feel that way often, when I realize how quickly Drama Queen and  my grandbabies are growing up, and when I visit my mom and see how frail she is becoming,  I just want to find a way to make time slow down.

I suppose it’s a good thing that time is not something we can control, we just have to make the most of each moment, trusting God to give us wisdom and direction for each new day.  I’m looking forward to 2009 and all the possiblities it holds.  I pray that the New Year will bring you joy, peace, health, and happiness.

Happy New Year!

Velvia

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Yesterday, I came home from church, had lunch, and then as usual I sat down at the computer to work on lesson plans, do research, and study for this week’s homeschooling.  I found a great website that had the information I was looking for, printed it off, and then proceeded to another site.  While I was waiting for the site to download (DSL is not available where we live), I was reviewing the stuff I had already printed off and realized that I had inadvertently missed a page that I needed. 

When I finished with the site I was on, I typed in the address of the website I needed to go back to.  It didn’t come up except as a group of other sites, so I tried again and the same thing happened.  After the third try and getting the same results, I decided to try one of the groupings of sites to see if I could get to the website I needed.  I looked carefully at the names of the sites, chose the one that looked the most harmless and clicked on. 

As I waited for it to download I was reading over some of the things I had printed off and when I looked up, lo and behold, there were very inappropriate pictures on my computer screen.  Needless to say, I clicked away as fast as I could.   I sat there in disbelief, this had never happened to me before.  I have heard all kinds of stories about this sort of thing occurring, but I have tried to be very careful, and had not experienced this.  Granted, it could have been much worse, it was mild compared to some things I’ve heard about from other people, but I was still shocked and dismayed.

Whatever happened to decency?!!  I don’t understand how we have allowed our society to become so perverted that this sort of thing is now prevalent on television, in movies, and on the Internet.  Who are the people that perpetrate such garbage, and why do these young women degrade themselves like that?  I’m sure money is probably one of the main reasons, if not the number one reason.

My heart is broken over these precious lives that are being ruined.   Whether they chose this life for themselves or not, they are God’s creation and He certainly did not intend for them to be exploited like that!  These women are someone’s daughters and granddaughters, sisters, and friends.  They are of value to Him and to those that love them.

I know that I can’t do much about the condition of our world as a whole, but I can do something to change my corner of the world.  I can pray and be open to whatever God has for me to do.  Maybe God allowed this to happen as a wake up call for me, it’s very easy to get caught up in daily life and become complacent about the condition of the world around me. 

 I live a fairly sheltered life by choice because I don’t want to be exposed to such things, but I don’t want to stick my head in the sand and miss opportunities to minister to those that are lost and hurting when God brings them my way.  I want to be open to whatever God has for me to do, to paraphrase Samuel – Speak, Lord, I’m listening!

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Winter is Back!

Just when I thought it was safe to declare Spring is on the way, Winter showed up again to prove me wrong.  The high today was around 40 degrees and we actually had snow flurries!  The counties in the upper elevations had some accumulation of snow, but unfortunately, we live too far south now to experience that.  I miss having one good snow each winter,  when we lived further north we would usually have at least one snow with anywhere from 2-6 inches of accumulation.

Being from the coast where snow is a very rare occurrence, I enjoyed the snow for the nine years we lived in the mountains.  I knew when we moved further south that we probably wouldn’t experience snow very much, if at all.   We did get one inch here back in January, but it was gone by morning. 

Drama Queen and I held our breath a couple of weeks after that when the local meteorologists called for 1-3 inches in our area.   Here in the south that’s a lot of snow ( I’m sure you’re giggling as you read this if you’re from a colder climate).   Drama Queen and I waited and waited and finally it began to snow,  it snowed for three hours straight and you know what, not one centimeter of accumulation!  Talk about being disappointed, I pouted like a baby for the rest of the day.  I can be really silly sometimes.

Oh well, I’m thankful for the years I did get to enjoy the snow, and who knows, maybe God will allow us to live somewhere it snows occasionally again.  Until then, I’m going to bloom where I’m planted, and enjoy God’s blessings in this season of my life.  And besides, Spring is on the way, it’s supposed to be in the 60’s this week.  Hooray!!

Have a blessed Sunday and don’t forget to set your clocks ahead!

Love, Velvia 

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Time Marches On, Across My Face!

Just when I’ve started to feel really comfortable in my own skin, I look in the mirror and I’m not me anymore!   I wonder who that middle-aged woman is staring back at me.  Surely that’s not me, I mean she has crow’s feet around her eyes, smile lines around her mouth, and if it’s time for a visit from Ms. Clairol, gray roots!  Someone has tampered with my mirror, that has to be it!

Granted, there are mornings when I get out of bed and I have a new ache here and there, but my mind still feels like it’s 19.  O.K., maybe that’s stretching it just a bit, but I certainly don’t feel 47.  I can remember when I used to think thirty was old, now eighty seems pretty young to me. 

I’ve been corresponding by email with a friend from high school who’s helping plan our 30th reunion.   I think she must be confused,  we can’t possibly have graduated thirty years ago,  ten maybe, but certainly not thirty.  Maybe I’ll email her again and ask her to double check the dates. 

 Ah well, time marches on, and as Dolly Parton’s character Truvy in Steel Magnolias said, “it usually marches across your face.”   It’s definitely marching across mine, in fact, it seems to be stampeding like a herd of buffalo. 

I find some consolation in the fact that as we grow older, we gain wisdom, I just wish I could remember what I’m supposed to do with it!

Disclaimer:  I am writing this post past my bedtime, so I’m punchy and not responsible for this foolishness!

Have a great and blessed Sunday!

Love, Velvia  

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A Thing of Beauty

I received an email yesterday from one of my closest friends.  It was a beautiful picture of the hands of five generations of women, followed by the story of a grandmother’s hands and the things she had experienced with them in her life.

I was so touched by the simple beauty of the photograph, from the baby’s chubby little hand to the great, great grandmother’s wrinkled, but beautiful one, and the moving story of a grandmother’s hands.

Something happened today that made me think about the photo and the story again.  Spiderman was sitting in my lap, he was feeling a little under the weather and wanted me to hold him, and he was stroking the palm of my hand.  It was such a sweet little gesture, I don’t think he even realized he was doing it at first. 

 He asked me why my hands felt so rough, and I explained to him that because I am growing older my skin is becoming drier, and that the cold weather also caused them to be rough and dry.  I looked down at my hands and at first I felt discouraged, they are becoming wrinkled, and they are red and chapped from the cold and washing them so much. 

But then the photograph and the story came to mind, and I realized that my hands are being used by God every day.  My hands are His hands here on earth, to reach out to those around me and minister to them in whatever way He calls me. 

There are many ways in which He uses my hands everyday: feeding my family, making our home a clean, cozy haven for us, hugging my children and grandchildren, and reaching out to hold my husband’s hand to let him know how much he means to me.

Though my hands are certainly not beautiful in the world’s eyes, if I use them to serve God, they are a thing of beauty.

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Tomorrow morning when I wake up I will be able to take a nice, hot shower after two days of taking lukewarm baths.  Our hot water heater went out on us (or so we thought) on Saturday, and rather than pay the plumber’s weekend rate, we toughed it out until today.  We heated water in pots on the stove, poured it into the bathtub along with a little cold water, and then took really quick baths. I can truly say I have a new respect for our ancestors who had to do this,  I am so grateful I was not born during that era.

I called the plumbing company this morning and spoke to a very nice lady who said they would send someone this afternoon to check it out.  When I asked how much they charged for a service call and she told me, I almost passed out!  Surely she was joking, but nope, she wasn’t.  We suspected that maybe the element had burnt out and I knew that it might take a while to replace it , so then the amount of the service call would be justified, (at least that’s what I tried to tell myself).  

  The repairman came about 2:00 pm, took a small rectangular cover off the front of the hot water heater, then proceeded to push a red button, and said “O.K., you’re all set!”  I asked him if he was certain that was all that was wrong with it and he assured me it was. 

Well, that was a relief, but now I had the dilemma of deciding how to handle being charged an exorbitant amount for a service call that took less than five minutes.  The repairman called it in to the company and when he told them I was not willing to pay the full amount, he was told to charge me a little less than their normal rate. 

After several phone calls to and from the plumbing company in which I told the manager I felt it was unfair for them to charge so much for a five minute service call, he agreed to charge me half their normal rate.  I was one very appreciative customer!  They can definitely count on my business in the future.

So now when I wake up tomorrow morning I will be able to take a nice long, leisurely short shower (we’re in a drought here), and I will be ever so grateful for the blessing of hot water.

Have a great night!

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