Sunday, March 28, 2010

Where the Pretty Things Are...

Pretty things, I like them. I always have. I'm a girlie girl through and through. Beautiful, pretty things sing to me. As a little girl I'd day dream about growing up and wearing make up and buying the most wonderful, fashionable clothes. I dreamed of pretty babies dressed in pretty frocks and a handsome husband to ooh and awe of over us and to tell us how pretty we are. My favorite part of yearbooks, were the pictures of the grown up girls arrayed in puff sleeves, big bows and turquoise. I dreamed in pretty and I still do.

Still want a handsome husband, and babies to dress. I still think about a white house with a big front porch and black shutters and a red door. Buying pretty clothes and dressing up is as wonderful as I imagined, if not more.

While I enjoy looking pretty, I don't always act pretty. You don't have to look farther than the evening news or morning paper to know that life isn't pretty, that sometimes it's down right ugly. How do we fight the ugliness that is humanity? We can stab it with character training, or pierce it with charities, punch it with good will, or jab it with self-help books. We can turn our backs and say it ain't so. We can do any number of things, maybe even win a round or two. But it will rear its ugly head again.

I was reminded in this morning's sermon of life's best beauty remedy.To go to the cross of Christ, where Jesus paid it all. Where sinner's plunged beneath the blood of Jesus lose all their guilty stains. Where ugliness can meet beauty. My pastor's message hammered in the fact that, "It is finished." We can add absolutely nothing to the grace of Christ. I don't think there is anything more beautiful than being able to freely admit, "I am ugly," only to have Christ vanquish it and replace it with His beauty.

As a Christian I so easily find myself trying to add to the cross, trying to act pretty in my own power. You'd think I'd know by now my righteousness is as filthy rags. My efforts will always burn up into a pile of ashes, until I take them to Christ and He exchanges them for beauty.

If beauty is in the eye of the beholder, I can rest in peace knowing when God looks at me He sees the beauty that is Christ. Nothing will ever be able to quench my thirst for pretty like He can. I like pretty things, especially when they're free. Christ, He's where the pretty things are.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Walking on Sunshine

Did you ever have your baby shoes dipped in gold or brass? A few of my siblings and I did back when it was in vogue. I always found it oddly fascinating. Wonder how my Mother would feel about being dipped in gold? Cause she's the stuff angel's wings are made from. Now, of course she's not perfect, the lovely little broad forbid me to get a perm back in 1980 something. Howbeit, she brushed up enough side ponies for me that I can forgive those few minor grievances and still crown her angel-esque with a sash of sainthood.

Mom is known in the local Target, as in she has friends. Friends that know I'm Lisa's daughter and ask about my mom. Mama knows their names, their children's names, their worries and woes and their happy moments. The lady could make friends down at the ant farm. She loves some people, probably why she has so many babies. In honesty, I find her gregarious nature a little annoying at times. I've wanted to plead, "Must we be political, can't we just buy our toilet paper and go?" I once quipped to one of our target friends, "Oh, you know Mom always the talker." The lady replied, "Everyone in this store knows your mom, she's so friendly and easy to talk to." That remark struck me, as to what a testimony it was to who my Mom is.

Mom frequents the local nursing home where my Granjanie is a resident. She visits often and has adopted many of the other residents. One resident, Bill Hastings, is a town celebrity. He has hydrocephalus, yet his memory classifies him as a savant. Give him a name and he can spout out their phone number, a sports team and he'll tell you the entirety of their stats. Pretty sure the man has the phone book memorized, literally.

The past two years, Bill has joined us for Christmas. He calls my mother tells her what time he wants to come, what he wants for dinner and when he wants to go home. Mom willingly complies. Hamburgers, mashed potatoes, vanilla ice cream and diet coke are bound to show up on the menu, even if we're eating seafood or breakfast. Bill's mother was my mom's elementary teacher and she's never forgotten her kindness.

Christmas night the phone rang, it was Bill calling to tell my mom, "Tell Da Kids, Three Hundred, Sixty-Four more days we do it again." I hear those words whenever it's the twenty-fifth of the month.

When I think of Bill and the countdown to Christmas, I think of my Mom and her genuine, heartfelt friendship and interest in others. She leaves some pretty big shoes to fill, yet I need to do better at following in those footsteps. Cause I'm about 90 % positive they're lined in gold.

A word aptly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver-Proverbs 25:11
A good name is more desirable than great riches; to be esteemed is better than silver or gold-Proverbs 22:1

Monday, March 22, 2010

The Rolling Stones...

John Denver's Some Days are Diamonds (Some Days are Stone) song has always resonated with me. Today was a day of stone. A down in the trenches, lost and alone in the mines kind of day. My car of many odd years wants a divorce. I am a volunteer child advocate and today was a court day. And that often finds me staring at the back side of humanity, the ugliness, the despair, the selfishness of we humans. And somedays I hit rock bottom of my own depravity.  "Sometimes the hard times won't leave us alone." Some days I make the day stone by simply being stubborn, obstinate and refusing to see the beauty of a diamond in the rough. Yet, to me the beauty is a day can go from a stone to a diamond by a little refocusing. You can hit happy by finding the left over hummus in the fridge which leads you to the forgotten olives. Or with an email devotional that reminds you of the importance of pressing on in your prayers.  "Put on the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness." It really does work. I'm going to go sit on my stone of a day and count my blessings.

If I were a proverb today I'd be,"If you've lost your happy, raid the fridge." Ok, that's probably why I didn't make the cut.

Spring Forward

I have this theory that your favorite season has much to do with the season you were born into. For me, my theory proves true. Spring is my BFF. I am learning to respect all of the seasons. Seeing how there is a time and season for everything. Winter, well I tolerate him like the annoying uncle who reeks of cigar smoke, but tells wickedly funny jokes, so you don't all together disown him. But you think about it. Fall, I'm learning to like him. He's sorta like your brother who you fought many battles with, but grow up and realize he's not so bad and you really even like him. Spring though is pure joy, like a best friend and a mama's arms. She's just goodness. And well summer, I love him like a man. He's hot  and sometimes you don't understand him, but despite his fickle ways you always want him to come a calling.

The weather has gone all bipolar on me. Cold, rainy and windy, what an oxymoron to a spring day. However, I must commend her on the way she arrived. Classy, it was just pure classy, sunny and 70's, that's my girl. I welcomed her back and drank her up, right down to the last rays of her light. I hope your first day of spring was as glorious as mine which was filled with....

Orange Pushups

Yellow flowers

A Picnic

A Best Friend
And An Evening Walk

Happy Spring! May it be filled with all of your favorite things.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Corned Beef With A Side Of Cheese..

I feel compelled to eat a bowl of lucky charms today, but as luck would have it I’m charmless. I guess I’ll just obey the health gurus and eat my greens instead.
Five to seven servings a day, right? And now I will leave you with a Saint Pattie's day blessing,“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the republic for which it stands, One nation, under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all, Amen.” I kid, I kid. That’s the Christmas blessing. Here’s The Blessing!

May your rainbows be golden
May your pinches be none
May your charms be lucky
May your leprechauns be jolly 
May your clovers be four
May your blessings be more…….

And that sweet friends, is what Irish for you!

P.S. A good male Irish accent makes me heart melt like a popsicle on a hot summer day.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Go Fish

I’m channeling my inner Oscar the Grouch. Can you tell me how to get, how to get to pleasant street? Because I’m going the wrong way down a one way street called grumpy road. If you’ll pull over, I’ll tell you how I got here. Games……….As in last night I took a risk and played a game. Boy, talk about trouble. Games bring back my memory of PE. Pretty much all PE related games were dodge ball to me, thus I was typically picked last. Operation I don’t like games, that’s my life.

Last night I lost pretty miserably at speed scrabble, which of course made me feel sorry for myself. I go to war with my ego during games. I just can’t get it through my cranium that it’s only a game. I know I should look at games as trivial pursuits. But I don’t , I score my worth by the hand I play. What’s my deal! Get a clue, self. Build a bridge and get over it. I feel like a rookOld Maid, who went and lost her marbles. And that my friends is how the dice rolls, and how I lost my pride. Let me know if you've scene it. Biggest loser, spoilsport I know, king me.

P.S I don't hate all games, I can play some pretty mean Candy land.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Say Cheese...........

The only thing better than cheese is a cheesy joke. The radio man cut the cheese today with this one, "Today is March 4th a date with a message: Stop Procrastinating and March 4th to your dreams!" Buwahhhhhhhhh. I smell a winner! What a cheese whiz. As for dreams, I dream of dinner......

Lettuce March 4th eat, drink and be cheesy!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

"The Word-Smith"

I like big words and I cannot lie
When a new word walks in my itty bitty brain
My heart starts to race
I like words!

The incredible, readable, words. I'm particularly partial to words that are fun to say like onomonopia and indubitably and gobbledygook. Mostly I just like the fancy, schmancy, words that make me appear smarter than I truly am. "She had a gargantuan, mammoth vocabulary" may it be said of me. Really I prefer "humongous" but I aim to impress.

I recently decided to include the word "wanton" into my vocab. Here goes I'm "wanton" spring to get here real bad.

So that's the word, Smith. Wink, Wink.