Saturday, May 30, 2009

I put together this book for Gweny for her birthday in July using So much fun!

Click here to view this photo book larger

This morning I created a photo book for Gweny's birthday titled Gweny's Day with Thomas the Train. The best photo of the family with Thomas has a man standing in front of it with a straw hat. I wished I could take that guy out - because then the photo would be great. I remembered I have Retouch on my photo editing tool and I wondered if....? Using the process (a bit labor intensive) I made that guy disappear. Seriously -- that is the SAME photo.



Saturday, May 23, 2009

I picked a bag of berries from my berry bush, and had a dream of berry pie. I trotted [OK drove] to my mom's house with a request. "Here's some berries mom, would you please bake me a pie?"

And she did. The first item baked in her new oven! I am loved.
"Kids spend more time immersed with electronics than ever before. This is the way life is. But it carries some very serious psychological risks. Even though girls think they're using electronics to connect, when they use a computer, a cell phone, or an iPod, they're really alone. They're not face-to-face with anyone..."

"You might find that after a while your daughter will have difficulty talking with you in a car, room, or restaurant, because being face-to-face is powerful and frightening, and she's too used to the anonymity of electronics." pgs 223-224. Meg Meeker, M.D. in Strong Fathers, Strong Daughters

..."too used to the anonymity of electronics"...This quote gave ME pause. Do I hide? escape? in the anonymity of electronics? Is face-to-face too powerful and frightening? The author labeled these kids as lonely. Everyone is busy. Everyone has these responsibilities and time commitments INCLUDING me. I rather like being alone. Electronics seems to fill the lonely times.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Full Time Ministry

I wouldn't want to be in full time Christian ministry - because - when do you ever get to just say "Forget it! I'm not being spiritual now." It stops being about following Jesus and starts just being a religious act - and how does one know the difference. "Hi, I'm play acting today." - or, "Today my faith is real."

I think sometimes when your JOB is spiritual in nature - a person says what they say...because that's their job. Too cynical? Maybe I'm talking about who am I kidding? I often think more highly of myself than I ought -- even when it comes to cynicism.

What do they call it when there is no wind for the sails? The big sailboats would sit in the ocean for days waiting for a wind. Where is the wind?

Of course you COULD ask the question, "So, are you a part time Christian or a full time Christian?" Really. How is part time even possible? Isn't it either or? Isn't a full commitment to Jesus a full time ministry?

Friday, May 15, 2009


These are songs we sang in our public schools, all the way through the 60's. Little prayers. Songs of blessing and praise to God Almighty. Some of them we sang every day. Our children don't sing them anymore. I don't think we knew what we were doing when we sang them. I don't think we knew what we were doing when we stopped.


Words and music by Irving Berlin
© Copyright 1938, 1939 by Irving Berlin
© Copyright Renewed 1965, 1966 by Irving Berlin
© Copyright Assigned to the Trustees of the God Bless America Fund
International Copyright Secured. All Rights Reserved.
Used by Permission

"While the storm clouds gather far across the sea,
Let us swear allegiance to a land that's free,
Let us all be grateful for a land so fair,
As we raise our voices in a solemn prayer. "

God Bless America,
Land that I love.
Stand beside her, and guide her
Thru the night with a light from above.
From the mountains, to the prairies,
To the oceans, white with foam
God bless America, My home sweet home.

Words by Katharine Lee Bates,
Melody by Samuel Ward

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

O beautiful for pilgrim feet
Whose stern impassioned stress
A thoroughfare of freedom beat
Across the wilderness!
America! America!
God mend thine every flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law!

O beautiful for patriot dream
That sees beyond the years
Thine alabaster cities gleam
Undimmed by human tears!
America! America!
God shed his grace on thee
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea!

Commonly referred to as America
by Rev. Samuel F. Smith

My country, 'tis of Thee,
Sweet Land of Liberty
Of thee I sing;
Land where my fathers died,
Land of the pilgrims' pride,
From every mountain side
Let Freedom ring.
Our fathers' God to Thee,
Author of Liberty,
To thee we sing,
Long may our land be bright
With Freedom's holy light,
Protect us by thy might
Great God, our King.

Holy and gracious Father, forgive us for we did not know what we were doing when we removed those songs. Renew those songs of blessing in our hearts and mouths today. Let our children once more give you praise for the beautiful land you have given us. Help us once again to value all the blessings you have made possible. God, bless America. In Jesus name, Amen.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


When Kelsey was here - I was never sure what it was she was doing all the time - but I was pretty sure it was spiritual. All kinds of God-activity going on around her all the time.

Now that Kelsey is not here - I am never sure what it is she is doing all the time - but I am pretty sure it is spiritual.

It feels so odd not to be able to kiss her face when I want to. The memory of touch is still clear. Touch is what she and I knew.

Death is so odd. Kelsey is here but she is not. That was true most of her life.

Ron and I sometimes wish for just one or two days with our 2 year old Julie or Andy. There is that same sort of wistful wish with Kelsey. Just a day would be nice.

My children are artists. REALLY. Wow! Not only that, they are GOOD. Double wow. How did that happen? It was yesterday wasn't it that Julie was crying because she couldn't draw a space ship? and Andy was throwing down his remote control because the video game was "NO GOOD!"? Writers, graphic artists, musicians, painters, photographers, cuisine artists, worship crafter, web designer,...My kids think they can do anything...and evidently they can! Isn't that awesome?

Autopilot going. Just like my car is sometimes on autopilot and takes me where it usually goes - even though that is NOT where I am going...My body/mind keeps taking me back to things I did because I needed to be home with Kelsey - even though that is NOT where I am going.

My daughter is a lady. My son is a man. When did that happen? And how did they do that without me? For so long they were so dependent on me - couldn't function without me - and now---WOW! they do very well :-) I am so grateful. So full. So relieved to no longer be in charge :-)

Monday, May 04, 2009




I am having so much fun copying and sorting photos - and I'm learning to retouch photos, ergo the BEFORE and AFTER. This is my great Aunt Fan, one of my grandma's many sisters.

Aunt Fan raised my mom for a year or so. She was fun, imaginative, energetic, and creative. My mom loved being with her. Below is a picture of some of my grandma's sisters. Aunt Fan is on the left. Grandma is in the middle. Aunt Pearl is on the right. Can't you tell these ladies are lots of fun?

In 1958 Mom and Dad took Aunt Fan and the family on a drive. In one day we saw Greenhorn Mountain (and snow), Red Rock Canyon, and Mojave Desert. This is a picture with us standing in front of blooming Joshua trees.

Aunt Fan was my favorite great aunt.

Sunday, May 03, 2009

Miss Annie Burdette and Miss Julie McCraw