Friday, August 27, 2010


I have discovered a new television show. The name of it is "Hoarders".  I do not intentionally watch it, but if I happen to see it come on, I tend to want to stay glued to it for hours.  Not sure why, other than being intrigued with the fact that people can actually live with garbage piled up all around them, even to the point they cannot get into their own beds and sometimes into their own homes.  Some have gone so far as to move out and rent apartments.  Another reason I do not intentionally watch it is because it makes me want to go clean out closets!!  Not that that would be a bad thing.

Whatever the opposite of hoarding is... that would be me!

My son moved out a couple of weeks ago leaving for college.  As he packed and cleaned out his room, we talked about some of the things he use to have and play with and I almost felt guilty over the lack of childhood toys, memorabilia, etc. in there.  I just do not keep things!! Oh, I still have some of their baby items, a few toys they played with, and some of the cards and pictures they drew when they were little.  Their crib is in the attic awaiting a grandchild, but for the most part as they grew up and went from one hobby, sport, collection, or whatever, I "cleaned house" so to speak.

As a matter of fact, I am in the process of cleaning out some things today in preparation to have a yard sale next weekend.  Now that my son has moved, it is time for me to clean out some things left behind and freshen up some paint and a few other things in his room, as well as, in some of the other rooms in my house.      

I walked down my hallway one evening this week.  Both of the doors to their bedrooms were open.  And I could not help but to remember them as they use to be.  They have at one time or another housed not only furniture, but also two precious lives and all that was important to them at that particular time.    Beanie Babies, The Little Pet Shop, A Rabbit, A Bird, Yellow, Purple, Green, Blue, Beige, Gray, Floral Prints, Plaid, Baseball Equipment, Guitars, Fencing Equipment, Paint Ball Guns, Fishing Gear, Stuffed Animals, Story Time, Bedtime Prayers, The Latest Fashions, Legos, Video Games, Dinosaurs, Baby Dolls, Halloween Costumes, Makeup, School Books, Stereos.... 





Thursday, August 12, 2010



By the weekend it will have grown to an astronomical size. So large that my breathing will be restricted, and the flood gates will break loose, the tears will flow, and the weeping and sobbing will begin.


On Sunday night or sometimes on Monday, I will drive away from my son, leaving him four and a half hours away from me (at college). I will come home to a house where he no longer lives and to a room where he no longer sleeps.

I have not really taken care of him (so to speak) in a while. He is 20 years old. But I have been here for ALL of those 20 years to see that he had a place to live, a bed to sleep in, clean clothes to wear, money to spend, food to eat, gas in his truck, doctors to see and medicine to take when he is sick, encouraging words when he is down....

I am afraid I am about to find out that the "Empty Nest" has little to do with the house and all to do with the heart!

A new chapter in our lives. One that has come TOO soon!

I will update as soon as I can pull myself together.


Last week my nine year old niece spent the night with me and we were able to get in a little shopping time.  And of course found ourselves in my our favorite store, T.J.Maxx. While being checked out, the cashier made a comment about my niece's birthmark.  She told us that her daughter had one that was almost identical, but located in a different place. (My niece has birthmark on the upper park of her chest.  She wore a cute little yellow halter top that day, otherwise it is usually not visible.) I shared with her that is was "God's thumb print".  She expressed some admiration for this explanation, but it was not her expression that concerned me.  I looked at my niece to see if I could read any embarrassment on her face. After all, it wasn't as if two people who did not know each other were standing there discussing her birthmark or anything like that! But, thankfully there were no signs of embarrassment or anything else. 

We left the store and never brought it up again.

We met my daughter and one of her friends for lunch next door at Pizza Inn.  They both commented on how cute she looked in her bright yellow top and the big yellow bow in her hair to match. 

During ONE of my niece's trips to the buffet line (in all fairness she was for the most part "sent" there), my daughter's friend asked me if she was ever self-conscious about her birthmark.  Without hesitation, my answer was no.  I explained to them about our encounter in T.J. Maxx and shared with her the "thumb print" story:  It was something her mom told her when she was very small and she accepted it immediately and always has.  End of Story! 

A few days later, something began to weigh on my mind.  How many blemishes do the rest of us have?  How many of these blemishes do we try to hide or cover up from others?  Sometimes we do a great job at it too.  It would be easy for my niece to keep her birthmark concealed from others, except those close to her.  Isn't it that way for us too?

I had a long telephone conversation this past week with a friend who has a lot of hurt in her life.  She has a son who has caused her and her husband much grief.  She made a statement to me: "It is time."  Time for what?  She went on to tell me that she had just turned 60 and for too many years carried around baggage filled with grief, guilt, shame, embarrassment, and so much more.  It was time to let go.  ( Not to be mistaken with time to stop loving or praying.  This never stops).  But it was time to let go of the shame and embarrassment.  Time to open up to others.  Time to allow God and others to help her work through her grief and guilt.  Time to share.  Time to allow Him to restore the joy in her life.  Time to live again. 

Unfortunately, I could relate to all she said.

This journey with my daughter has carried me to places that I would never have chosen to go, but to places where I have seen God's face many times.  Had it not been for this journey, I would have quite possibly never experienced those life changing encounters with Him.  No, this journey has been a blemish in my life.  One that has forever changed me and my relationship with God.  His hand has been on me through every step of way.  His hand has been on my daughter's life.  His hand has shaped and molded me into who I have become through it all.  And if He has thumb prints, then my life has unmistakably been imprinted with them.       

And I will use my nine year old niece as my example: To not be embarrassed. Never be ashamed.  But will  go forth and boldly and proudly display God's Thumb Print!

Saturday, August 7, 2010


I will never take for granted or be ungrateful over the fact that my children respect me.  There are many reason I know this to be true, but I am not going to go into them on this particular post.  I am feeling awfully proud today because they desire to share "things" with me.  I will never take for granted that God gives me a glimpse into their lives (the parts that I never see) so that I know how to pray for them and how to council them.

This morning hearts were spilled out (as well as tears) all over my living room.  I spilled my heart.  He spilled his.  And all I can say is that it was not the "Good".  It was the "Bad and the Ugly".

And after all was said and done I have never been more proud of my son in my life! Ever! 

Friday, August 6, 2010


It was not until tonight that I discovered she (my daughter) had this story posted on her facebook page.  She wrote it on April 25, 2010 (the day after my birthday).  In her words:

This is one of those gut busting, hilariously funny, make you cry stories that is funnier told in person but we have laughed so hard about it I have to share.  To appreciate you have to know my dad.

One of the presents I got my mom for her birthday was a wrought iron cart filled with all kinds of goodies...A Tyler candle, lotion, soaps, bubble bath, coffee and a coffee cup.  Not just any ordinary coffee and cup though...Hallmark has a collection of pink and black matching coffee cups and coffee that have cute sayings on them.  The set I got said "The queen's caffeine".  It was so cute, made her gift basket complete.  I loved it.

7:30: I got to my moms and we were getting ready to head to New Orleans.  I was loading my stuff into her car.  I picked up the gift basket (which was half wrapped in a trash bag) and was making my way to load it up when I heard something drop and shatter on the concrete.  The queen's caffeine cup.  I was not happy but nothing I could do, was already with my mom and tomorrow was her birthday...

8:00: SO...I send my dad a text." I need you to drop what you are doing and go to hallmark and get mom a coffee cup.  It is pink and black and has "the queen's caffeine" on it."
My dad (already in New Orleans, texts back): "Where do they have them?"
Me: "ANY Hallmark store!!!"

My dad enters panic mode.  Frantically trying to finish what he was doing and get dressed to get to a Hallmark store before they close at nine.  Now this is the part of the story I need you to really picture my dad in your head.  He is in a panic mode.  The mall closes in 30 minutes and I have sent him out to search for a needle in a haystack.  He rushes in Hallmark:

Dad to worker: "Do ya'll have a coffee cup with THE QUEEN'S CAFFEINE on it?"
Worker (with astonished look on her face): "No"
Dad: "I thought all Hallmark Stores carry them."
Worker (wondering why he wants one so badly): "She explains that all the stores carry the brand but not necessarily the same gift packs.  They all come in different styles, colors, quotes, etc."

So my dad leaves the store and thinks he is off the hook.  Sends me a message that they did not have one. He goes to P.J. Coffee Shop and orders himself a venti coffee and is ready to go home.  Well, my OCD is not going to allow me to give my mom a wrought iron gift basket with coffee in it and no mug to match.  Desperation kicks in and I send my dad another text telling him to get any kind of cup.  A pretty pink one with flowers or something will do.  At the time (8:45) he is walking out of the door of the mall to go home.  He does a 180 in search of another cup.  When he gets BACK to Hallmark he notices a note on the door, "No food or drinks allowed." This is the point when his panic stricken state really kicks in.  Not wanting to waste the ginormous cup of coffee he just purchased and with only ten minutes to spare he starts pacing around in front of the store drinking  guzzeling his coffee so fast it would make your head spin.  (My dad does not drink coffee on a regular basis, only occasionally, so his head probably WAS spinning).  By this time, I am sure the workers have called security to watch the crazed coffee obsessed man desperately looking for a queen's caffeine coffee cup.  He finished his cup in 2.5 seconds and with knocking knees goes inside Hallmark once again and starts looking for another cup.  I can only imagine what is going through the worker's heads.  Wondering why this man HAS to have a Queens caffeine coffee cup, goes and gets coffee, drinks it at the entrance of the store pacing back and forth, and then frantically rushes back in only to look at more coffee cups.  All of this happens in a matter of ten minutes.  "This crazy man must be fixated on coffee!!!!!!"

8:55:Dad: "Anything else you need me to find before the stores close at 9:00?  A llama hair scarf?  I can even find a specific color for you like watermelon tangerine.
Me: I need a cookie jar with her initials engraved on it.  Lemon lime color.
Dad: "OK. I am off to Timbuktu.  The Dalia Lama has one.  Be back next month."

(By the way, he bought a pretty one with flowers on it that read, I love you mom.  He did a good job.)

Monday, August 2, 2010


And, no, I am not talking about a water park or this HEAT WAVE we are having here in the Pine Belt. Although, I should be. My car thermometer read 103 yesterday, and that was in the shade!!

A hand, or in this case, an arm gesture is the wave I am referring to. There is an elderly lady that walks in my neighborhood. This morning was not my first encounter with her. I see her almost every morning as I am driving out of the neighborhood headed to work. And today was no different than all the other times I have ever passed her. She waved.

This lady appears to be full of spunk and almost bounces as she walks. She is very petite. As a matter of fact she has one of the smallest frames I have ever seen. Even her hair is cut in an extremely short style. Every thing about her is petite. Everything that is except her wave!!

Here are some things I have especially noticed or wondered:

1. Her enthusiasm. Hers is not just any old wave. It is not a wave leaving you wondering if it was even a wave at all or if she was just swatting at a bug. She throws her tiny little arm up in the air and moves it back and forth with all her might at every single person who passes her. She does this looking straight ahead never missing a beat as she walks. No, there is nothing small, petite, or wimpy about her wave. She puts her entire body and soul into it.

2. She has never NOT waved. And yet I can't help but to wonder if she sometimes does not feel like waving, but does so anyway. If so, it doesn't show. They are always the same. Wholehearted and full of gusto.

3. They speak to me. Every single time. They say,"Howdy neighbor". They say, "Acknowledging you is extremely important to me because you are extremely important". They say,"I would never consider otherwise, no matter what". They say, "Have a great day today wherever you are going and whatever you will be doing. They say all of this and so much more!

4. Does she have any idea how she is affecting the lives of those around her? Many times her small gesture in the form of a friendly wave was the only thing on that particular day that lifted my spirits, even if it was just for a moment. I don't even know her name and sometimes I have wanted to pull my car over, get out, and hug her. Who knows, maybe one day I will. I don't know, but I do know this: I look forward to seeing her. I miss her when she is not out walking. She makes me smile. How many people's lives has she touched with something as simple as a wave?

5. Her spirit is contagious. As soon as you spot her on the road, you know it's coming."The Wave". And then you cannot help yourself. You just have to! You want to! You can't imagine not! You have to make sure she sees you. You wave back. And not just any wave back. You do it with the enthusiasm you know she would be proud of! Wandering why you can't be the one to give someone else a smile, the one to change someone's day, the one to wave first!

Sunday, August 1, 2010


And it's already August. See post dated 6/29/09, "I Never Promised You A Rose Garden".

Friday, July 16, 2010


I would have to go back and check some dates, but I am fairly sure it is going on three years.  Three years of not knowing where my daughter lived.  Three years of not knowing whether or not she stayed with friends, rented an apartment or house, or lived in her car.  HER CAR! Oh how that makes my heart ache.  I am literally wiping the tears from my eyes as I type this, knowing there were times in the past three years when she had nowhere to go, nowhere to call her own, nowhere to lay her head, nowhere to settle, no where to feel safe and secure.  

Even with our relationship mended, it has been necessary for me to not know or see where she lived.  But...

Today is different!

Because today I know where she lives.  I know where she calls her own.  I know she has a bed to lie down on with clean linens and pillows and a pretty comforter.  I know she will be cool this summer and warm this winter and water for bathing with fresh towels to dry off on.  Today I know she will have a place to keep her clothes neat and a place to wash and dry them.  I know she has plates and bowls to eat from and cups to drink from.  Today I know she has yummy smelling candles to burn and sweet smelling soaps in her bathroom. I know she will have warm rugs to walk on and  a pantry and refrigerator stocked with food. And all the things I take for granted every single day!!

For the first time ever, I have taken a part in making sure she has some of the things she needs to make her comfortable and happy living out on her own.  And this makes me happy.  

Sunday, July 11, 2010


The blog created by Ashley's mom, Trish, is the first blog I ever read. Ashleys Journal.  I did not even know what a blog was.  And could not for the life of me tell you how I stumbled across it, but I have followed her story faithfully.  It is the story of their precious daughter and their journey through the life of a transplant.  Trish has inspired me with her attitude and her ability to set aside all things that do not matter so much and put front and center all that does, like her children, all three of them.  Right now Ashley is in critical condition and she and and her family need prayer.  If you are reading this, please pray for little Ashley Kate Adams.   



Not in this case.
It has been five days since I have heard from her.
She could call today and we could pick up where we left off last Tuesday.
I just don't know.
She has done this very thing before. 
She called me. (Tuesday)
Many times throughout the day.
She asked if she could move home for a little while.
I told her she could.
She told me she would need a bed when she moved in with a friend.
I told her I would take care of it.    
We talked about so many things.
She talked about giving her golden retriever away.
She cried and I listened.
I tried to encourage.
Maybe I said too much.
She sent me a text around nine that evening.
She was not coming.
It is the waiting and wondering that makes me crazy.
I have tried to communicate.
I have called, left messages, and texted.
She has not responded.
My mind begins to go in all sorts of directions.
But, I recognize the need take a step back.
Not push myself on her. 
But, I hate this.
Where is she?

A couple of years ago, I would go weeks and even months without talking to her.  I never knew where she was or what she was doing.  I was consumed with so many emotions.  But mainly I grieved.  But, it was different then.  Separation was the way I dealt with her and the decisions she was making. Before anyone passes judgment, you would have had to walk in my shoes to understand the process.  I have walked one day at a time on this nearly three year journey, each day bringing different levels of emotions and understanding.  My strength, my faith, and my love have grown to heights I never knew possible.  I have witnessed the Almighty at work; miracle after miracle.  If I had had the ability at the time to spare my sweet daughter from the direction she took, would I have?  Yes.  God knew this.  He knew I would have done anything to spare her from this potentially life destroying decision.  He did not give the choice to me. Throughout this journey she has changed.  I have changed.  This was His divine plan for both of us.

In the last couple of months she began saying yes God.  And it was then when he began to open doors that were never open before.  She recognized them.  She walked through them.  She told me she also began to recognize how Satan was working overtime.

This is what scares me about her silence.

Is she fighting with all her might or is she giving in to what Satan has deceived her into believing is the easy thing to do right now? 

I cannot fight this for her.  All I can do is pray for her and cheer her on.  She knows I am here and when she avoids me I think the worst.  It is as if she is a small child again.  She has done something terribly wrong and is hiding from me.  She is ashamed and to face me would bring out the shame.  She also knows how excited I have been over her desire to get her life back on track.  Is she afraid of disappointing me?

See!  I told you my imagination is in over-drive.

God, she has been at the bottom.  She told me so.  I have to believe she does not want to be there anymore.  And I know you do not want her there anymore.  Open her eyes to Satan's lies.  He is busy masking the ugly with beauty that is appealing to her senses.  Wake her up.  Let her see, smell, hear, and feel the stench and rottenest of all that she has surrounded herself with.  Give her the strength and courage to do what she cannot do on her own.  This week I have, indirectly, seen and felt her hurt and confusion.  All the change is overwhelming to her even though she knows it is right.  Give her something to cling to.  Show her real beauty and not masked beauty.  Allow her to know that any suffering she may endure in the process of receiving and enjoying your beauty will be worth it in the end.  Let her know that her suffering is not necessarily punishment from you, but rather the consequences of where she has placed herself these past few years.  I love her and cannot bear to see her struggle.  So, no matter how hard and painful she thinks this is, give her the endurance to overcome. Encourage her.     

God, encourage me.  Would you give this mother peace of mind?  Would you give me the phone call I terribly long for?  God, would you?    Thanking you for what you have and will continue to do in both of our lives.  Amen. 

In the meantime, I will wait.  I will watch.  And I will pray.  I am here, precious daughter.  I am here.    

Thursday, July 8, 2010



This past Sunday, on July 4, my husband and I attended Metairie Baptist Church.

A little over two years ago we began looking for a church to attend during our weekends spent  in Louisiana.  Keeping in mind that Baptist Churches are not located on every corner as we are used to seeing.  Catholic Churches? Yes! Along with just about any other denomination you can possibly think of. We went on the Internet and found a few we were interested in visiting; this list consisted of four or five.  However, the very first church we visited was not one of them.  It was a non-denominational church located just blocks from the house where my husband stays during the week and we both stay on occasional weekends.  We enjoyed the service but both agreed that it was probably not the right place for us.  So, officially, Metairie Baptist was the first one on our list.

The church is located in a historical district approximately five minutes away from us.  The neighborhood is lovely and the houses surrounding it are quaint and VERY expensive.  We know because we looked into a few of them thinking we could consider purchasing one.  The church building itself is old and beautiful.  Our experience there on that particular morning was refreshing.  And even though the music was a wonderful balance of old and new; the people were friendly; and the sermon moved us to tears, we still thought we would check it off the list and move on to the next church.

But, we never did!  We have been drawn to this church and have visited every chance we get.  My husband has even attended during the week.  We would love to be able to get more involved, but have not figured that one out yet. 

We have yet to find one thing about this church that we do not like.  As I said earlier, the music is a wonderful balance of hymns and praise music.  The Minister of Music is young, energetic, talented, and friendly.  The same can be said of the Youth Minister.  The congregation is a mix of young and old.  The pastor is a middle-aged man.  He and his family are from Tennessee.  He is spirit-filled and his sermon's reflect that.  They move me to tears and I usually leave the service full of emotions, even those of jealousy when a new family has joined.  I am really confused as to why God has given us this wonderful church to attend in a city where we do not live and why we are still struggling to find one here in our own home town.  

Overall the services at Metairie Baptist are God led, organized, polished, uplifting, and inspiring.  One thing that stands out there is how often they stop to pray.  The Youth Minister presents the church with the announcements and he prays, the Minister of Music prays a couple of times, and the Pastor prays for some of his congregation who have specific requests.  He also prays at the beginning of his sermon and at the end of his sermon.   Each prayer is specific, never lengthy, and truly heart-felt.  

This past Sunday Pastor Strong prayed a prayer that gripped my heart and moved me in a way that I have never been moved before.  I am not sure why, but I did not think to mention it to my husband after we left, but the next day he mentioned it to me.  This prayer had affected him the same way it had me. It was a wake up call of sorts and possibly a life-changing moment for both of us.

It was not what the pastor said, it was how he said it.  Think about the words we use to ask God for something.  Here are some examples:

--God, please bring my daughter back to a place in her life that would please you.
--God, I pray that you would bring my daughter back to a place in her life that would please you.
--God, bring my daughter back to a place in her life that would please you.
--God, I want my daughter back to a place in her life that would please you.

Everyone of these requests are presented in the form of a command:

--Please bring! 
--I want!

Pastor Strong prayed a prayer like one I have never heard in my life, like one my husband has never heard in his life.  It was a yearning.  It was full of respect, earnest desire, compassion, gentleness, and sweetness, yet so overwhelmingly powerful at the same time.  It was the picture of a young son wanting something so badly and knowing he was at the mercy of his daddy to grant him his desire.  "Father, would you take me fishing today?  Would you?

God, would you bring my daughter back to place in her life that would please you? WOULD YOU?


Tuesday, June 29, 2010


And Glory Filled My Soul.....

For some strange reason (at least I thought it strange at the time) these words from this gospel hymn that I have not heard or sang in a very long time came to my mind earlier in the day.

Tonight I understand.  They were a glimpse into what was to come.


Tonight we talked. We laughed. We cried. I heard her say things I never thought to ever hear her say.

I will not be able to record the conversation in its entirety, but I will remember and write as much as I possibly can.

She told me it was as if she had been asleep for over two years and was NOW awake.

She regrets the lost time.

She told me it HAD to happen.

She needed to hit rock bottom to wake her up to truly get it, to understand how blessed and wonderful her life was.

With all the gusto in the world she desires to get K (herself) back.  

She told me she has already left her current situation mentally and emotionally, but physically it could not happen until September.

She has made plans to share an apartment with a high school friend.

This friend has played an important part in her "finding herself" once again.

She stays with this friend often, but for complex reasons (reasons that I completely understand) (reasons that are legitimate and not just excuses) she cannot do anything permanent until September.

We talked about and cried over a person who plays a key role in her current situation.

She is tormented over the condition of this person's soul.

I am tormented over the condition of this person's soul.

I know in the future we will both pray that someone will come into __________ life and share Christ and He will be accepted.

She has a tremendous amount of compassion for others, including this one she needs separation from.

She recognizes Satan and how He is at work. There is a dying grandmother and a sister who has just been diagnosed with cancer in this person's life.

She understands total and complete separation from this person will have to take place.

Tomorrow is her last day at her full time job.

She is excited.

They are giving her a going away party.

She read me the e-mail she composed for her co-workers. She has a gift for words!

She starts a new part time job this week.

Her co-workers at the current job are sad about her leaving and her new co-workers are excited about her coming.  This tells so much about what kind of person she is.  People love her.

I love her!!

She knows there is a reason for her life going in the direction it did.  She accepts the fact that if she can save just one person from making the mistakes she did, it will have been worth it.

Her threshold for pain is minus zero.  I know this.  She knows this.

Still she desires to have a tattoo removed, one that could have an impact on her future, one that she is ashamed of.

She is in awe of how amazing God is.

She is aware of His timing.

She understands it was not until she reached this point that He would open the doors that have miraculously opened.   

Prior to tonight's conversation she had already shocked me with her willingness to give away some of her pets so she would not be hindered and could move forward with her plans. (I had the opportunity months ago to talk to her in length about this and at the time she was closed minded in regards to giving one of them up much less three)

Tonight came an even bigger shock.  She has been given an opportunity to give the one pet she vowed to never part with, a one hundred pound golden retriever, a home.  She recognizes this as another door God has opened and she is willing to walk through it.  The situation is so absolutely flawless for her and the dog.  I am amazed!

She begins school in August.

She possibly has another job opportunity that could be "just what the doctor ordered" while she is in school.

I know I will probably think of something else I will wish I had remembered while writing this, but I think you get the point.

I get the point.

O what a tender, compassionate friend-
He met the need of my heart;
Shadows dispelling, With joy I am telling
He made all the darkness depart!


Friday, June 25, 2010





I am not sure why I have never asked a friend with a grown child if they allow their imaginations to run as wild as I do on this matter:


Every time my son or daughter call me and their voice seems low or I think I hear a sound other than a clear voice on the other end, here is the image I see:

Their vehicle is mangled and in a ditch
They spot their cell phone and manage to reach it and
Punch in my number because it is the first one that comes to their mind
Just as I answer the phone, they can no longer stay conscious enough to talk
And now I am suppose to figure out where they are and go to them

Crazy or what?????

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


QUESTION: Who can you stand before with tears streaming down your face whining, complaining, begging, pleading, and spilling your heart out to for hours on end and they consider it to be music to their ears?


I had a "heart melting" moment this morning on my way to work while listening to this song and realizing how much He loves me!

God loves a lullaby
In a mothers tears in the dead of night
Better than a hallelujah sometimes.
God loves the drunkards cry,
The soldiers plea not to let him die
Better than a Hallelujah sometimes.

We pour out our miseries
God just hears a melody
Beautiful the mess we are
The honest cries of breaking hearts
Are better than a Hallelujah.

The woman holding on for life,
The dying man giving up the fight
Are better than a Hallelujah sometimes
The tears of shame for what's been done,
The silence when the words won't come
Are better than a Hallelujah sometimes.

Better than a church bell ringing,
Better than a choir singing out, singing out.
Better than a Hallelujah somtimes.

We pour out our miseries
God just hears a melody
Beautiful the mess we are
The honest cries of breaking hearts
Are better than a Hallelujah.


Friday, June 18, 2010


I recently wrote this post where I talked about how I am sometimes tempted while out shopping to approach mothers who are not dealing very well with children who are misbehaving.


-Don't get upset over your child's restlessness. Playing is their favorite pastime, not shopping.
-Don't blame them for asking for toys, candy, etc.  When we see something and want it, we buy it.  They can't. They have to ask.  Besides that, the store designed the toy department especially for their viewing enjoyment. 
-Take advantage of having their face in yours. Plant kisses on it.
-Do not take this filled up little buggy seat for granted.  One day it will be empty.  Well, not entirely empty. It will keep your eggs safe, your purse nearby, and your bread from getting smashed. Trust me when I tell you that eggs and bread will never look into your eyes with all the love this world has to offer.


-Go ahead, buy them a toy. 


-If you have a child who is independent, be proud, they probably inherited it from you.
-Do not think an independent child does not need you.  They do!
-Do not fight it, just learn when and how to gently "reel" them in when necessary.
-Allow them to be the individual that God created them to be.
-If they are asking you for hot pink fingernail polish or fake tattoos, do not be overly concerned. It's ok if they like shiny, glittery things.
-This does not mean they will grow up to become someone you would have to pretend you did not know if you ran into them on a "street corner".
-Chances are their taste in fashion will probably change and eventually become more refined.
-Do not spend your weekend cleaning house, spend it with them.
-Do not let them grow up to only remember that you were a clean freak.
-Give them  memories of fun things you did together.
-THEY do not care if the house is clean and chances are no one else does.
-When they grow up and leave home, you will have all the time in the world to clean.
-And guess what? By then YOU will not care anymore.  
-Waste no time, and I repeat, no time in trying to prove ANYTHING to yourself or to others.
-Know when it is time to give up something and make necessary changes, even if the changes are major ones.
-Do not despair if they are followers and not leaders.
-Leaders need followers.
-Just pray more.
-Pray they will follow the right ones and into the right direction.
-Do not expect them to mimic your personality.
-They may have needs and desires completely opposite to yours.
-Let them express their personality through clothes and shoes that they get to pick out on occasion. 
-Let them decorate their own rooms.
-No one will think any less of your decorating abilities if they chose the latest Disney character as the theme.
-Let them be creative.
-Even if it means using markers, glitter, or play doh in the house.
-And if they have an indescribable love for animals, let them have a pet, a real pet.
-Forget about trying to keep your carpet looking new for a lifetime.
-Never expect them to understand how "good" they have it.
-Give them something to compare their life to.
-Do everything possible to take them on a foreign mission trip.
-Talk less.
-Listen more.
-Do not be a brick wall.
-Be a sifter.
-Help them to sort through all that life throws at them, teaching them to know what is worth keeping and what needs to be thrown out.
-Be consistent, and be constant.
-Be authoritative, but also be approachable.
-And last but definitely not least , love them like they will grow up and leave you one day.
-Because, guess what? They will.



Early this morning my daughter shared this dream with me that she had during the night:

She dreamed that I (her own mother) was MAKING her be a contestant in a débutante pageant.  She was furious with me because of it.  We showed up at this community center event with only thirty minutes to spare.  The other girls (the ones in the elegant, long, flowing gowns) were already lined up.  She took her place in line, AS A DÉBUTANTE,  sporting a red fuzzy vest with a long sleeve black t underneath and black leggings, but not before she touched up the bright orange polish that was chipped on her big toe nails that were sticking out of her black stilettos. (Like anyone would have gotten past the outfit to notice the chipped polish on her toe nails!)

Hahaha! You can't make this stuff up!!!

We laughed ourselves silly.

She told me the reason for the dream HAD to be because of a childhood memory; one she cannot keep suppressed; one that involves a hideous homemade cheerleader outfit and a homecoming court.  Let me explain. Briefly.

During her early elementary years she attended a private Christian school.  The dress code was extremely strict.  She was a cheerleader (along with her entire class of 10 or so) for the basketball team.  Their outfits were quite pathetic to say the least. Because of the school's strict dress code, everything these poor kids wore looked as if they were four or five sizes too big for them including the cheerleader outfit.  They  consisted of  over sized yellow sweatshirts and royal blue, homemade, as-ugly-as-you-can-get, below-the-knees, baggy culottes.

She and I attended this homecoming game together.  The second we entered the gymnasium a staff member "swooped" down on her desperately needing a "favor".  It appeared that one of the court members, the homecoming queen possibly (I can't remember) had gotten very ill at the last minute and was not able to attend.  She asked begged my daughter to fill in.  I still remember watching my daughter agonize over the decision.  She felt honored that they would ask her (what she did not realize was that the other two class mates who were also NOT a member of the court and who had also come dressed to cheer, had already said NO!!!) (Don't really know if this happened, just guessing!!) She also knew that the "sore thumb" sticking out of the "court" would be her.

Her one and maybe only chance for Cinderella-ism, only without the fairy god-mother, carriage, ball gown, or glass slippers.   

Can you imagine a mother allowing her precious little girl who LOVED to dress up in everything fancy to escort a homecoming king dressed in a suit and tie (who evidently could not walk without a girl on his arm) down the court in front of thousands hundreds OK tens of people dressed in a poorly homemade, over sized, down right UGLY cheerleader suit, tennis shoes, and white socks along side all the other "queens" in their ball gowns??  And did I mention that it was raining cats and dogs that evening.  We were both drenched.  

Well I can!

And I did!

And have pictures to prove it.  

Oh boy, is hind sight not 20-20 or what??

No wonder she is, 16 years later, still having nightmares!

Poor girl!

At least we can still laugh about it.

And laugh we did!!

And laughing with her is a good thing.

A very very good thing!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010


Her first words as she walked in the door of my office yesterday waving her paperwork in front of me.  Needless to say she was excited over having just enrolled in school for the fall semester.  It has been her desire for a long time and now it had become a reality. 

I had to smile when she made the statement knowing what she meant: The smell! Nothing like the smell of freshly sharpened pencils!  Along with all the other school supplies that signify a brand new school year.  But for her, they signify so much more:

-A new beginning
-A fresh start
-An opportunity to get some things right, to do better
-Understanding that some things are not permanent
-Mistakes can be erased or forgiven
-A promising future ahead of her

She was unsettled during our visit, mainly due to excitement, but also due to so many uncertainties.  Over lunch and during the drive to and from we talked about some of the new challenges about to unfold for her.  I encouraged her to take one step at a time allowing God to lead and to try not to worry over all that lies ahead.  I know this will be difficult for her.  It will be difficult for me as well! 

Prayer  requests:

-That she will be able to get right back into the groove of school.
-That the part time job she has applied for will become available if it is the right thing for her to do
- Her finances (She has already paid off two of her three credit card debts.  I am so proud of her.)
-Good grades (Important for the degree she is pursuing)

There are SO many more and as time goes by, I would like to share specific ones with you.

Today; however; I am going to buy her some pencils!

Monday, June 14, 2010


He loves me anyway.  And He wanted me to know this.  He also wanted me to know that she does too.  At 3:14 I posted a prayer:

Help me to trust you even when I cannot reach out to her.  Capture her attention.  Please, God, give her a gift today.  Allow her to become overwhelmed with how much her mother loves her.  I do not know how you will accomplish this; I just know you can.

At 4:13 she sent me a text from work: I am going to be over your way tomorrow if you want to go eat lunch.

This may not be profound to anyone else, but it is to me!    

“For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth to shew himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect (made ready) toward him.” II Chronicles 16:9

Thank you, Father, for showing yourself strong in behalf of me today.  Thank you, for showing me that she held me in her heart and had me on her mind.  Only you knew how important it was for me to know that.


My husband and I were in town over the weekend and I saw a mom trying to deal with her two small children who obviously did not want to be riding around in a shopping cart in T.J. Maxx on a Sunday afternoon!! I made this statement to him (one that I have made many times before {usually to myself}, especially when I see the manner in which some mothers deal with their children out in public): "I wish I could do it all over again. I wish they were little again." And then he asked, "What would you do differently?"  My answer: ENJOY THEM MORE!!!!

I want to run up to these mothers and plead with them, "There are no second chances. They have only one childhood and you have only one time to get it right.  Don't mess it up!!!"  I don't of course, but I have been tempted more times than I care to mention.

On this journey, I never know what memories, emotions, or thoughts, I may face from day to day. Today for some reason I have shed tears filled with longings.

I miss her! She declined my invitation to meet us for church and lunch yesterday.

When things are not the way they should be between my daughter and myself I want to fix it. But I want to go back and fix the root of it. Satan begins to unveil ALL the mistakes I made as a mother. I know better than to listen, but sometimes the thoughts are too loud to drown out and the hurt is too deep to go away.

Please don't get me wrong. I was not a terrible mom! But, I also know I made mistakes along the way. I could make a list of them for you, but I will spare you.  Besides, it would not benefit me or her or anyone else whatsoever.  I truly believe this is not from God.

He does NOT want me to dwell on the "what ifs" or regrets; nor does He want me "stuck" in the past.  But rather, He would have me "moving" ahead, not repeating the same mistakes, but learning from them. And this is what I strive to do most of the time, honestly I do.  But on occasion "guilt" comes a-knocking and I foolishly let it in.

God, please clear my thoughts.  I do not want them given over to anything that would harm me.  The hours and minutes of THIS day are ticking away.  I want to enjoy them more!!  Help me to listen to my heart, the place where You dwell and He does not.  Help me to be better today than I was yesterday and to not make the same mistakes that I made yesterday.  Help me tomorrow that I will not regret today.

Help me to trust you even when I cannot reach out to her.  Capture her attention.  Please, God, give her a gift today.  Allow her to become overwhelmed with how much her mother loves her.  I do not know how you will accomplish this; I just know you can.

God, my past is just what it is: my past.  Help me to not be sad over it.  Help me to be glad in what I can accomplish, through you, in the days ahead of me. Help me as I strive to ENJOY THEM (my husband, son,  daughter, mom, dad, brother, other family members, friends, job, house, talents, abilities, and every other aspect of my life) MORE.


Sunday, June 13, 2010


Her Facebook status this morning:

Straight from her heart and Jeremiah 29:11

Learning that my "worry" about a situation isn't going to do anything to change it! I have had several things that I have been worried sick about "how am I going to do that?", "Or how am I going to make this work out?" And I am amazed as I am watching everything fall out of the blue into place before my eyes ....... Comforting to know that I was taken care of long before I was ever thought about. So why do I worry?! It is under control and my "help" is not needed!

For I know the plans I have for you,' says the Lord. "They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. In those days when you pray, I will listen. If you look for me wholeheartedly, you will find me."

Saturday, June 12, 2010


"She is trying to find her way home"

Is what I wrote in my last post.

This morning I doubted those words. I feared it would never really happen.

And then God brought this song (one that I have not heard in a very long time) to my memory. I began humming the tune before I could even remember the words...


I’m pressing on the upward way,
New heights I’m gaining every day;
Still praying as I’m onward bound,
“Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.”

Lord, lift me up and let me stand,
By faith, on Heaven’s tableland,
A higher plane than I have found;
Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.

My heart has no desire to stay
Where doubts arise and fears dismay;
Though some may dwell where those abound,
My prayer, my aim, is higher ground.

I want to live above the world,
Though Satan’s darts at me are hurled;
For faith has caught the joyful sound,
The song of saints on higher ground.

I want to scale the utmost height
And catch a gleam of glory bright;
But still I’ll pray till heav’n I’ve found,
“Lord, plant my feet on higher ground.”

Friday, June 11, 2010


I woke very early this morning and had some quite time before I had to get out of bed.  My mind began to wander and here is one of the places it wandered to: A strange comparison of sorts.  

Chloe, my toy poodle, alerts us when an intruder walks or rolls onto our property.

She barks, she whines, she runs back and forth from the windows and doors, pants, growls, and jumps up and down. This behavior almost always gets our attention and causes us to investigate the cause of it.

And then we react:

-To a Friend: Open the door and welcome them inside. When she realizes we are ok with the visitor she then changes her tune. The distressed behavior turns into excitement. Her entire body begins to shake with it. Mom and Dad like them and so does she.

-To a Foe: (The "foe" has never been anything other than a stray animal: dog, cat, raccoon, chipmunk, or sometimes armadillo.) We usually try to scare the intruder away to quieten her down and with the safety of our cat in mind.

On occasion she has had the opportunity to confront the foe face to face instead of from behind a window pane.  She does so cautiously.  If the foe (usually a stray dog) appears friendly enough and accepts her presence she hangs close even after it decides to move on.  She  follows it and runs down the street, stopping occasionally to look back at us as we frantically and to the top of our lungs attempt to call her back.  She continues on, not knowing her destination or understanding the dangers that await her.  She is oblivious.  She follows the enemy out of her safety zone, into the busy street dodging huge things that could squash her and encountering those who would not waste time trying to fool her with masked friendliness, but rather devour her immediately. She does this without a single thought of the consequences or understanding that once she gets too far there may never be a turning point.  She does not consider that she would be solely responsible for her own physical needs. She does consider her mom and dad and how sad they would be and how much they would miss her and worry about her everyday.  She does this not understanding that her new companion does not really care about her or her well-being, only themselves.

How many times I have wished I could understand why she would be so willing to leave a place where she is so loved and taken care of!

Curiosity? To see if the grass is really greener on the other side? Adventure? Would she miss us?  Would she remember her wonderful life here?  Would she realize her mistake?  Would she try to find her way home? Would she find us?

After retrieving her more than once from this fate, our emotions have been mixed with relief, thankfulness, and anger.  Although the relief and thankfulness usually win out, she also gets scolded  for her disobedience.

And when she gets in trouble she pouts and acts like a child.  It is really funny.  She will not make eye contact with us.

Is she disappointed, mad, or too ashamed to look at us?

I cannot answer any of these questions for my little poodle.

However, my daughter could.

She knows!

-She understands the pull and intrigue of the enemy
-The tricks they used to lure her away
-And the world that enticed her
-She knows all the hows and whys
-And the color of the grass on the other side
-Yes, she does long for and miss our relationship (the way it should be and use to be)
-Yes, she remembers the comforts and security of home
-She does realize and understand her mistakes
-She is trying to find her way home
-She has traveled far and the journey back is long and difficult
-But she knows it is still possible
-Disappointed and mad? At herself!
-But mainly ashamed
-And also the reason for little eye contact and few words yesterday during our brief encounter


-She knows them both
-Having to learn the difference
-The most difficult part

Wednesday, June 9, 2010



(She is responding to a text message I sent her earlier today. I have not talked to her since she returned from the trip she took last week.)

"I love you too, mom. And you weren't the cause of it. ("It" being the guilt that overwhelmed her about the trip. See post entitled, "Denial" ) I'm the cause of it. No one can fight the battle but me and I am trying..."

I could say so much about this, but right now my heart is too heavy. I have a daughter out there in this cold, cruel world feeling alone, unsheltered, and vulnerable fighting the enemy with all her might and this mother cannot go rescue her.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010



Actually,our paths have crossed many times over the past decade or so, but we were nothing more than casual acquaintances, until recently that is. We are now kindred spirits who:

-Are close in age
-Live in the same town
-Actually in the same community
-Share the same Godly principles
-And family values
-And are married
-To our children's father
-Each have two children
-An older daughter and a younger son
-Who are the same age (late teens/early 20's)and
-Who share like personalities

It was not until AFTER our relationship changed that we discovered these similarities in our lives. They were NOT what brought us together. No, our spirits were bound because we both share so much more:

-Two babies and a desire to keep them forever safe and protected
-With the reality of knowing that we would not always be able to do this for them
-Devoted to teaching and preparing them for their futures
-Hopeful that they would always keep and use the knowledge they had been taught and the wisdom that was hidden in their hearts to stay protected
-Wanting victory
-Wanting truth, righteousness, preparation, faith, salvation, the Word, and prayer to be their shield
-Boldly displayed armors so that in a crowd it would cause them to stand out, but at the same time it would also protect them
-Standing on the sidelines
-Learning to let go, little by little
-Watching them soar
-And praying
-A glimpse of victory
-Blindsided by attacks,
-Bad decisions,
-Peer pressure,
-And rebellion
-Watching battle after battle play out in their lives
-Praying harder
-The bitter taste of defeat
-The desire to fight
-Weariness, wanting, at times, to throw in the towel and give up
-Floods of so many more emotions (too many to list)
-Working through each and every one of them sometimes over and over again
-Seriously considering possible alien abduction
-Not liking their replacements
-Knowing it was no longer a simple matter of kissing a bobo, placing a band-aid, or choosing which punishment to enforce: time-out, grounding, lecturing, or spanking
-Learning our place in the midst of it all
-Learning to stand firm on the Truth while trying to maintain a relationship with them
-Remembering God's way
-Unconditional love
-Learning to let go of the guilt and not blame ourselves
-Learning to deal with disappointment as we watch them sway back and forth while they deal with convictions and temptations
-Concern over how their futures will be affected
-At the same time, knowing God has a plan for them
-As well as for us
-Trusting Him with it
-Hopeful that some day they will want to and be able to use their stories to help others and share Christ
-In the meantime...
-Recognizing those He places in our path to help us along the way and those we can help
-Dealing with what comes our way the ONLY way we know how to
-Full of joy
-And thankfulness
-Yes, thankfulness...only through


Saturday, June 5, 2010


Came knocking on my door this morning and I let it in. Oh, how I wish I had not because it is not being my friend!

After a student/parent orientation that lasted all day yesterday, I feel a little tremendously weepy this morning as my thoughts are on this:

-A clean but EMPTY bedroom

-A clean but EMPTY bathroom

-An quite but EMPTY house

-Coming home from work to this entirely too clean, too quite, and empty house

-August 14 (move out day)

-Ole Miss

-An apartment

-Roommates other than mom and dad

-The aching and longing that I already know I will have to see him

-My "baby boy" four hours away from me

OK, I need to go have a good cry before he gets up. Hopefully it will make me feel better.(For a little while anyway)

Thursday, June 3, 2010


My step-mom has been sick for several weeks now and has been seeing a doctor. On Tuesday of last week she had some procedures performed to possibly find out the reason for her problems. I called and talked to my dad immediately after the procedures and have called and talked to him twice since then to check on her. According to him all went well, the tests showed nothing unusual and she was making vast improvements. This past Tuesday she had a follow up visit with her doctor to discuss the test results and follow up treatment. I called to get a report on how this went:

This time she answered the phone instead of my dad. She began telling me how the doctor wanted to proceed with diagnosing the mass found in her stomach as the initial biopsy was inconclusive. He wanted to send her to Oshsners Hospital for further biopsies. But in the end he agreed with her request to see a local surgeon and schedule surgery to have it removed. This would require hospitalization and a major operation.

The above is a summary of what took her several minutes to tell me all the while I am scratching my head. "Ok, how did I miss this? I have talked to dad three, THREE times since her out-patient procedures. Did she ask him not to say anything in the beginning? Did he forget to tell me? Did he in fact mention it and I forgot? Is this a new development, something she just found out today at her follow up visit?"

When I was finally able to ask her some of these questions, she responded: You have not talked to me. You have only talked to your dad. He has not told a single person.


She did not have an explanation, other than this: He lost his previous wife to a devastating cancer and his way of dealing with this diagnosis is to simply not talk about it. In other words:

DENIAL: Psychology. An unconscious defense mechanism characterized by refusal to acknowledge painful realities, thoughts, or feelings.

My dad, no matter how differently he may describe it, is in DENIAL. He would say it's nothing, they (the doctors) do not think it is anything to worry about, or everything is going to be ok. And while ALL of that may be true, the fact is: If he doesn't talk about it then it is not real.

Now, on a completely different note I am about to record a conversation I had with my daughter via text yesterday. It will not make sense to you without having knowledge of its origin and I apologize for that, but it is important for me to journal these kinds of things, in hopes that one day I/she can make sense of it all. I want to always remember the details, especially the magnitude of God as time and time again we have witnessed Him carry us through this journey.

ME: Do u think u could stay with (the dog) tomorrow night?

(We needed to go out of town for the evening , and I wanted her to stay at our house and dog-sit)

HER: I know this is going to upset you and I did not want to tell you because I knew it would but I feel guilty not telling you. I am going out of town until Monday. Leaving tomorrow. Have had it planned and paid for since January. Do not want to go anymore but don't want to throw the money down the drain. Torn. But don't have much longer.......I'm sorry and I love you.

ME: OK. Have had to read between the lines, but I guess it is what it is. Not upset. Love U 2.

HER: I know you are upset and disappointed. Have a right to be. Want to say I'm sorry but know those are shallow words. But believe me I am.

ME: ______, I don't view this any differently than your current living arrangement unless I am missing something here. I have come a long way in accepting the fact that I can do nothing about decisions u make, right or wrong ones. I will be very thankful when u turn ur back on the situation u r in right now, but until then I have to be content with how God has worked in ur heart already. Still praying because He is not finished with you yet. I love you.

{I am clueless as to what this actual trip is all about or where she is going, but I do have my suspicions about the guilt trip.}

As I dealt with the situation with my dad and step-mom during the first part of the week and as sad as the whole denial thing made me, I was reminded yesterday that I too have been a passenger aboard "SS DENIAL".

The opposite of DENIAL is acceptance. In a sense I have been in a state of denial throughout this journey. Denying it means that I refuse to accept it because accepting it would mean that I was OK with it.

Wow! I could be my own therapist!!

However, I refuse to DENY this: I want this journey to be over!

This: I realize that no matter how bad I want it to be over and want it to be only a memory and a tool for my daughter to use to benefit others, the fact is: It is NOT over.

And This: God has truly done a work in her, changing the desires of her heart.

This: She has not been willing to throw down and flee from her current situation and trust Him with the rest. She wants to plan and map out her future.

Or This: It saddens me to know she is missing out on seeing God do unimaginable things!

And especially this:He has a plan. She is part of it. He chose her. I am also a part of it. He chose me.

Or this: I do not want to miss out on what my part is.

But, mainly this: "Take, my brethren, the prophets, who have spoken in the name of the Lord, for an example of suffering affliction, and of patience. Behold, we count them happy which endure. Ye have heard of the patience of Job, and have seen the end of the Lord, that the Lord is very pitiful, and of tender mercy." James 5: 10-11

Saturday, May 29, 2010

But.....I DID enjoy my meal!!

Yesterday, I had lunch at Red Lobster on the Gulf Coast with my daughter and some friends of ours. I very much so ENJOYED the company.

My daughter split an appetizer, a seafood nacho platter, with someone else, but I tasted a small portion of it. Very ENJOYABLE! I ordered unsweetened tea with lemon. ENJOYED! The cheese biscuits came out and I "ENJOYABLY" ate one of those while waiting on my order, a grilled shrimp salad and gumbo in a bread bowl. The salad, I ENJOYED. Every lettuce leaf, shrimp, tomato, cucumber, croûton, etc. was good. The gumbo, well, NOT SO ENJOYABLE. As a matter of fact it tasted so nasty I could not eat it. I took about three bites, hoping each time the next one would be better, but it was not, instead it got worse. I moved it off of my plate and placed it by my daughter so she could try it. She felt the same way I did, so the bowl of gumbo pretty much looked untouched.

Not one time did it ever cross my mind to complain. I was plenty full after having eaten: a portion of an appetizer, a cheese biscuit, a grilled shrimp salad, french bread, and two glasses of tea.


When the waiter came to ask how we wanted our tickets divided, I told him to put mine and my daughter's together. I truly never expected to hear what he was about to say to me: "You will not have a ticket because you did NOT ENJOY your meal". I wanted to argue, but decided to not spoil the "moment". It was an unbelievable one, and one that left me speechless for a second or two. I almost felt guilty, no I actually DID feel guilty, because I did ENJOY my meal! But, his unexpected act of kindness had just made it all the more ENJOYABLE!

After he left our table, the others began teasing: "Well, we didn't enjoy our meal either!?"

(By the way, I left him a sizable tip that more than covered my portion of the food I had eaten!)

Wouldn't this world be a more ENJOYABLE place to live in if more people were like my very observant and generous waiter at Red Lobster??

Tuesday, May 11, 2010


I observe things.  I have always been able to see and hear the tiniest of details, ones that maybe no one else can.  Sometimes this is a good thing and sometimes it is not. 

This past Saturday, the day before Mother's Day, I made a discovery.  I was not shocked or angry, but rather sad and disappointed.  It was confirmation to something already suspected.  My husband and I discussed when and how to handle the situation.  He decided it would be best to allow some time to pass and he would take the responsibility of revealing the discovery.   

(I hate it when someone posts just enough information on facebook to leave everyone guessing.  I have always thought they should share all or nothing.  And now here I am doing the same thing on my blog.)

I am sorry that I have to be vague about my "discovery", but I had to mention it because it is one of the reasons for this:



After my "discovery" on Saturday, I had some errands to run. While busying myself in town and dealing with discouragement, I received this e-mail:   "Hi Lynn. Just wanted to tell you I think you are a terrific mom, and I have always looked up to you in so many ways, but especially as a mother. I love you... Happy Mothers Day!!!"

It was from a friend who lost her toddler son several years ago in an extremely  tragic accident.

I responded: Oh, ______! years to come...I will be able to share with you what your words meant to me on this very day. I am always awestruck when I see God do something and today He did. Thank you for being his mouthpiece. As a mother, you have walked where many of us have not and I so admire your strength and courage. I love you,too. Happy Mothers Day.


On the way to church Sunday, we were listening to a Casting Crown's CD.  My husband commented on the words to the song that was playing, questioning their meaning.  I pulled the cover out of the plastic case and started reading the introduction. It was not until later that I realized I had read the wrong intro.  The one I read was for the song, "Stained Glass Masquerade".  I do not have the cover available to document the intro word for word, but it talked of hypocrites, somebody who pretends to have admirable principles, beliefs, or feelings, but behave otherwise. Here are the lyrics to the chorus:

Are we happy plastic people
Under shiny plastic steeples
With walls around our weakness
And smiles to hide our pain
But if the invitation's open
To every heart that has been broken
Maybe then we close the curtain
On our stained glass masquerade
Is there anyone who's been there
Are there any hands to raise
Am I the only one who's traded
In the altar for a stage
The performance is convincing
And we know every line by heart
Only when no one is watching
Can we really fall apart
But would it set me free
If I dared to let you see
The truth behind the person
That you imagine me to be

It was not by accident that I read these words.  Hopefully, they planted a seed in a heart that needs to understand truth.  They put a situation into perspective and possibly gave my husband the spring board he will use when he is faced with the confrontation to reveal my "discovery".   


Through the unanswered phone calls, unanswered text messages, and unreturned calls over the past couple of weeks, I have sensed her pulling away, AGAIN.  She spent the afternoon at my house on Sunday.  I felt her presence in  body only.  All I can do is continue to watch, wait, and pray.  Mostly pray.

Dear God,  I want my children be OBSERVERS.  Help them to DISTINGUISH the truth from Satan's lies.   Show them the importance of IDENTIFYING with you and not with this world, as well as, the importance of ACCEPTING the responsibilities that come with being children of the King, REALIZING there will be consequences for their actions.  If you choose to reveal your plan to us in the future, the reason for this journey and the trials we have faced on it, please allow this family to be AWARE of how you used it to change us.  Protect my children in the present and help them in the future to UNDERSTAND.  Allow them to be willing to share their experiences so that others may KNOW you.  AMEN

Friday, May 7, 2010


My mother: Brenda
My mother-in-law: Lillie
My step-mother: Minnie

My grandmother: Irene
My grandmother: Daisy
My step-grandmother: Lilllian
My step-mother: Elaine
My sister-in-law's mother: Betty

Sunday, May 2, 2010


This blog was created because of my daughter and her life choices. It has been devoted to my journey along the way. In the beginning there was rebellion; there was separation; there was hurt; there was anger,disbelief, and confusion.

She made a bad choice and her heart belonged to God. Her mind and heart clashed. Because of this clash or rebellion she became a mean spirited person, especially towards those of us who would verbally disapprove. She also hid from us - just as Adam and Eve did, ashamed of their actions, knowing they were wrong and not wanting to face their Father. In the beginning the hurt and pain were so intense that separation was ok with me. Because of my anger and disbelief an "out of sight out of mind" attitude was my way of coping. I was confused to the point that I could not figure out how I could ever manage a relationship with her outside of accepting her choices. There was a HUGE hole in my heart, one that only God could fill. And He did!

He directed me back to her. I never stopped loving her. I stopped letting her know I loved her. He showed me how to build a bridge. The bridge she would walk across, the one that would carry her to the other side of her bad choices. A bridge like the one He builds for me, the bridge of unconditional love. He began to show me that I did not have to accept her choices and I did not have to understand them but I HAD to love her through to the other side of them with the confidence and knowledge that with His help I could do it. She would reach the other side a better person, I would be a better person, and God would get the glory for it all.

She has not yet made it to the other side, although I like to think she is close. She is presently suffering from the consequences of her choices, trapped in conditions she cannot figure out how to free herself from. And I have learned along the way that I cannot carry her across. I can; however, be the solid foundation that will get her there. I will love her,encourage her, and pray for her until I know she has made it safely to the other side. My heart's greatest desire is that some day she will use her life experiences to rescue others from making the same mistakes or giving those who already have the hope that they too can cross to the other side.

I said all of this... to share this: The birthday card, or booklet, she gave me for my birthday last week.

It speaks volumes in regards to what God has done in our lives and just how far she has come on what I want to believe is the last leg of this journey.  For me it was not only a birthday card from my daughter, it was also God wrapping his arms around me and kissing me on the cheek!

Happy Birthday! Happy Birthday!
My Hero My Friend My Mom
LOVE is what happens while you're living day by day.
Time goes by too fast.

Little Girl Days
"Mommy & Me" days -
they all blend together
into one long, happy time
when I felt protected
& learned the world was a safe place
where love held me up
& never let me down.

Everything I am today
is because of that
unconditinal love.
It was there at the beginning
& made me able
to grow into who I am now.

Becoming Friends
If there's one thing
a girl needs
during those tough years
of growing up,
it's someone who
boosts her confidence
when it feels
like the rest
of the world
is conspiring against her.
Someone patient enough
to keep on loving
& guiding through
good days & bad.
In other words,
a great mom.

Some True Things
Picture this:
Years from now,
us sitting on a porch somewhere,
laughing, telling old stories,
having gotten through
to the other side of life
where there's time enough
for sifting & sorting
& examining each memory
like the treasure it is.
Here's something today
for you to pack away
in your memory kit -
I want you to have it now:

I love you so much.
I always have. I always will.

Signed: "Happy 50th!! I love you!! K

Friday, April 30, 2010


I am inclined to think so, considering my history and past record of vegetation mutilation!

Thursday, April 29, 2010


1. THURSDAY, APRIL 22, 2010 - The evening drive to New Orleans with my daughter after she got off work.
2. The birthday lunch I had with my mom earlier in the day.
3. The gift card she (my mom) gave me from Bed Bath & Beyond.
4. The card from my niece.
5. The picture drawn by her dog, Sadie.
6. The note from my niece on the drawing: "She (Sadie) REALLY drew it" 
7. The talks my daughter and I had in the car on the way to New Orleans pertaining to her dreams, goals, and ambitions.
8. The poodle who rode in the back seat quiet and content because she was getting to go "bye-bye".
9. The Subway sandwiches on the way.
10. Watching my daughter as she texted her dad in the car and hearing her laugh each time he texted her back. 
11. Knowing they were up to something pertaining to my birthday and having fun with it.
12. FRIDAY, APRIL 23, 2010 - Waking up, knowing we had five whole days to be together, doing what we wanted to, when we wanted to.
13. McDonald's drive through for our late breakfast/early lunch.
14. Grocery shopping at Wal-Mart.
15. The time that FLEW by while in Wal-Mart.
16. Not realizing we had been in there for several hours when I finally realized it was 2:30 shortly after I hung up the phone telling my son to wait until around 1:00 to decide when he would drive down because of the weather.
17. The downpour while in Wal-Mart.
18. The ponchos my daughter went back inside to purchase after we had already checked out just so we could get to the car without getting soaked.
19. The fact that we got soaked anyway.
20. As well as the fact that it stopped raining just as soon as we got home and unloaded ALL the groceries.
21. My husband's early arrival home from work.
22. T.J. Maxx.
23. The turquoise canister I purchased.
24. The "silly" game we were playing when I spotted it. My husband tries to guess my favorite item on an aisle or on a shelf. (He usually never gets it right, but this time he did)
25.  My son and his girlfriend arriving.
26. The grilled shrimp, salad, and hamburgers for supper.
27. Having my son's favorite French bread waiting for him.
28. Whole Foods.
29. Cookies: short bread with chocolate drops.
30. Barnes & Noble. 
31. Scattergories.
32. The laughter over my daughter's answer for an item of clothing that starts with the letter C: CLOAKS.
34. Hearing my family up and scurrying around in the dining room.
35. The phone calls from family members.
36. The happy birthday wishes from family and friends on facebook.
37. The Pandora bracelet and charms from my husband, daughter, and son.
38. Knowing my daughter was behind the idea, as well as, the purchasing of the bracelet.
39. Knowing how important it was for her to have something special to give me on this particular birthday.
40. The card from my husband.
41. But especially the card from my daughter.
42. The tears that it brought to my eyes.
43. The joy that it brought to my heart.
44. The comfort that it brought to my soul.
45. The earrings from my sister-in-law.
46. The bath products, candle, and decorative wrought iron cart from my daughter.
47. The "Queen's Caffeine" coffee and mug from my daughter.
48. Especially the story behind the "Queen's Caffeine" mug (the reason for all the texting between my daughter and husband during the drive down)
49. The John Besh Cookbook from my husband.
50. The Mall of Louisiana in Baton Rouge.
51. Seeing the Blue Bayou Waterpark on the way and my children's excitement and anticipation as they planned summer visits to it. 
52. VooDoo Barbecue.
53. CC's Community Coffee House and Turtle Mochasippi
54. Laughing our heads off in the food court as my husband shares with us the details of the toy he never got as a child despite the fact that he wanted it so badly. (not sure what prompted the story)
55. Watching the You Tube video of the vintage ad: "Six fingers, six fingers man alive, how did I ever survive with five?"
56. Sephora's
57. The trip that my daughter, son, his girlfriend, and myself took to the Lakeside Mall in Metairie after we returned from Baton Rouge because one GINORMOUS mall was not enough for one day.
58. We went to Jared.
59. The large Pandora display that took up approximately 1/4 of the entire store.
60. The fun my daughter and I had throughout the day looking through the catalog, talking about, and searching for beads as we planned and designed our bracelets.
61. Her bracelet and charms (dog and purse) she purchased at Jared.
62. Dragos and chargrill oysters.
63. Watching my son eat lobster.
64. The fact that we never saw a drop of rain the entire day despite the weather forecast of severe thunderstorms with possible hail and tornadoes.
65. Cafe Dummond. Coffee and Beignets.
66.The bonding that took place over the course of this long weekend.
67. A necessary ice-breaker between my daughter and my son's girlfriend.
68. My husband's love and devotion shown to me all the time and especially on this day.
69. The contentment I felt, leaving no room for sadness over turning 50, it was just a number.
70. A perfectly wonderful day, one that I never want to forget.
71. SUNDAY, APRIL 25, 2010 - The trip to the French Market that my husband, daughter, and I took after my son and his girlfriend left for home to take care of school related deadlines.
72. The stop back by Jared before going to the French Market so my daughter could make an exchange.
73. Landry's Seafood.
74. Pralines.
75. Serrano's Salsa Company.
76. Movie shopping at K-Mart.
77. Watching "Old Dogs" with my daughter.
78. My husband asleep in the recliner because he could not stay awake to watch it with us.
79. MONDAY, APRIL 26, 2010 - Knowing my daughter and I had the whole day to ourselves to shop or do whatever we wanted to.
80. T.J. Maxx and watching my daughter get excited over her find: a clutch purse and her bargain: an overnight bag originally priced at $180.00. T.J. Maxx's price was $35.00.  They were both Jessica Simpson.
81. Marshall's and my find: a computer tote.
82. PetSmart and the treats for Chole, Bentley, Bella, and Greyson.
83. Her love for animals and knowing it is an inherited trait.
84. Subway, again.
85. The crazy 8's I made circling the city trying to get to Tuesday Mornings and Wal-Mart to finally abandon the GPS and go the only way I knew how to even though it was the long way around.
86. The movie being filmed two blocks from our house on Clearview Parkway, "Jeff, Who Lives at Home".
87. The sandwiches I made (even though mine was better than theirs) (at least that is what they "lovingly" joked about when I kept making a big deal over how good mine was)
88. The picnic and walk in Lafreniere Park.
89. PERFECT weather.
90. Tutti Frutti frozen yogurt.
91. More Scattergories and hearing my daughter laugh at my answer to a personality trait starting with the letter K: KNOTS ON LOGS.
92. More movie watching.
93. More laughing at my husband who could not stay awake.  Waking up in spurts long enough to say, "I'm not asleep" or to ask, "Has it gotten to the funny part yet?"
94. TUESDAY, APRIL 27, 2010 - The silly little notes my daughter wrote and taped throughout the house for her dad to find when he got home from work after we were gone.
95. Whole Foods, again and their bath soap.
96. Bayou Country Village, Cajun Meatball PoBoys, and more Pralines.
97. A ride home and more time with her.  
98. To realize how sentimental we both are and that we laugh about the same things, like the same things, and say the same things.
99. Not wanting it to end.
100. But knowing it ended with more hope and more promises than it ever began with.  The PERFECT 50th Birthday Gift!!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


I mentioned in a previous post that my daughter had been borrowing my car.  Short story, long:  She wrecked hers by rear-ending another vehicle after they made an abrupt stop. She was able to drive away, thankfully.  She spent the evening at the hospital where she was checked out and diagnosed with a concussion.  It could have been worse, but again thankfully it was not.  The next day she informed her insurance company and waited for them to access the damages.  After a week went by and still no visit from the insurance adjuster, she called them again.  She was told they were waiting on a police report.  We could not understand why that mattered, but that was their story and they were sticking to it!   Into the second week and still with no sign of an insurance adjuster, she took her car to a body shop to let them go ahead and order the necessary parts. The man who owns the body shop told her that it looked ok for her to drive, but to not make any long trips in it.  This was on a Friday afternoon.  That same night, while she and a friend were on their way to a movie, smoke started boiling out from underneath the hood.  She was driving in bumper to bumper traffic, but was able to pull over into a parking lot.  By this time her car was pretty much blazing!  She and her friend got out and were ok.  Thankfully she was close to a fire station and their response was quick.  This time the insurance company did not delay accessing the car's damage.  Neither did she have to wait long for their report to declare it totaled.

After the shock wore off, my daughter became very concerned about what she was going to do with no vehicle, no money for a down payment to purchase another one, and the probability of still owing a large sum on the "charred" one after the insurance company settled.    Finding out she had Gap coverage was a surprise to her, a welcomed surprise.  (Gap insurance covers the difference between what the car is worth and what you owe on the car.)

We played "musical cars" for a little while.  My husband got a company car to drive, I drove his truck, and she drove my car.  She needed a couple of months to save for a down payment and some time to try to find another one. 

After a couple of weeks and after she looked and looked at cars and agonized and agonized over the price tags, she made what I considered to be a very "big girl" decision.

She realized how great it felt to not have a car note and how great it would be to not have one when she returns to school in August.  Prior to her accident, she had been looking at three more years of payments, and now this incident had changed all of this.

In the words of the late Paul Harvey: "And now for the rest of the story".

My husband and I had already planned on purchasing a new or at least newer vehicle towards the end of this year.  So, we talked about the possibility of selling the old one to our daughter and going ahead with our plans to buy another one.  But, not only were we not financially ready to do this, we also had some concerns about selling her our vehicle because of its age. We barely mentioned this to her, but never pushed the idea on her.  As a matter of fact, we were in the process of helping her look for one for herself.  We had also made the joint decision to not inflict her with our advice or ideas. 

This was why I was taken back the night she called to inform me that she wanted to buy our car.  She told me it felt "right" and she had peace about it.  She knew she could save up and pay us for it in one lump sum and after having driven it for a few weeks, she realized it had all the features she was looking for in a vehicle.  The car she owned had been void of any "extras".  I told her over the phone that I would have to talk to her dad about it first because we would have to have some work done on it for her if this was what she wanted to do.    

- Unbeknown to me at the time, my husband had called a friend of his who is a prayer warrior and asked him to pray about our car situations, for my daughters, as well as, ours. I am not sure how many days this took place before the following telephone conversation.
- My husband's brother mentioned to him that his daughter and son-in-law were on their way out of town to purchase a new vehicle. At the end of the conversation, my husband hung up and immediately called the son-in-law.
- He asked him what they were going to do with their old vehicle.  The answer was to trade it in.  He asked if we could possibly look at it.  So, they got an estimate for a trade it while they were there, but picked up their new one and drove the old one back home for us to look at.
-We picked it up on Sunday, called him Monday morning to find out how much he wanted for it. He asked us for the pay-off.
- By Monday night we owned a 2005 Chevrolet Tahoe and owed less than $6,000.00 on it. I am not usually so open about how much we pay for things, but this was nothing short of an answer to prayer and I just had to share it. 
-The son-in-law was happy and willing to do this for us.  And we were so thrilled to watch God work all of this out!
-I will thankfully drive this car for the next couple of years while we are up to our eyeballs in college costs for our son. 

AND I am not finished yet. Or at least, God was not finished yet.

I got a phone call from my husband on Wednesday from his work.  He informed me of an incentive bonus he had just been given at work.  He asked me if I had any ideas on how to spend it.  (Was that a dumb question or what?)  It only took me a fraction of a second to tell him what spilled out of my heart.  He agreed wholeheartedly.  I could not get her phone number punched in fast enough.  I was able to inform my daughter that she now owned her car, our old car - free and clear!  She owed us nothing.   

My heart overflows.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010


And I heard the sound
Of a voice like thunder shake the ground
It was the first time I remember
Ever feeling my heartbeat… (“You Found Me” by Big Daddy Weave)

I am not now nor have I ever been a “night owl”. I wind down fairly early and wake early. I can usually “hit the floor running”. (Not literally, but you know what I mean) However, the older I get it’s more like I hit the floor shuffling. I use to be a sound sleeper, but this HAS changed. It is on a rare occasion that I am able to sleep through an entire night.

I was 28 when my daughter was born and it was very difficult for me to get use to interrupted sleep. I don’t think it would be a problem for me now, but back then (WAY back then) it was! Thankfully, though, her sleep pattern, going to bed early and waking early, mimicked mine. And, she also mastered sleeping through the night after a few short months.

My son, on the other hand, is completely opposite. He is a night owl and has always been. And he never slept through an entire night for the first year of his life.

When your children wake you up in the middle of the night…

As babies, it is usually because they are hungry. As toddlers and young children, they may have had a nightmare and are scared, or they are sick.

As teenagers, another story!

My children have called me on the phone in the middle of the night to let me know where they are or walked into my room to wake me up to let me know they were home.

And I appreciate that. I really do. Although those “middle of the night” phone calls have nearly given me a heart attack.

But, last night, or should I say this morning, around 2:00 a.m. to be exact, my son woke me up. And are you ready for this?????

Shining a flash light in my room…. “Hey, mama, wake up. The electricity is off.”

All I could say at the time was, “OK”. I wish I could have mustered up more of a conversation. I would have probably told him something like this, “Go to bed, and go to sleep! And then you will be like me, at least like me before you came in here and woke me up, not knowing OR caring that the electricity was off! At least not until you are awakend in the morning by your digital clock flashing the wrong time in your eyes."