Monday, September 16, 2019

Monet's Garden

In August, Tim and I traveled to France. We're not any kind of jet setters, but I've dreamed about visiting France for as long as I can remember. We shared this dream with my brother and his wife, and the four of us would imagine what it'd be like to visit France. In January 2018, we took the plunge and committed to go on a river cruise on the Seine River. We saved and planned and finally it was time to go.

I'm sure you can see the excitement in our expressions. I won't overwhelm you with too many stories and pictures all at once. Today I want to share Monet's Garden with you. On our tour, we learned Monet planned his garden meticulously. His goal was to have a beautiful garden from which he could paint his pictures. Not only are his paintings masterpieces, but his garden is a masterpiece.

I have a picture of his home in Giverny hanging in my office. (It's not a Monet, but I've enjoyed it for years.)

We toured his home and gardens on a rainy day, but you'll be able to see from my pictures that it didn't detract from the beauty.

The gardens were crowded, and we didn't have time to explore like we would've liked, but visiting Monet's home and gardens was a highlight of our vacation.

I hope you enjoy these pictures.

And the painting hanging in my office? I now have photographs to go with it.

Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Alan Jackson - Where Were You When The World Stopped Turning

Never Forget is more than a phrase. Let's not forget the heroes and let's not forget to love.

Hurricane Dorian

Last year, Hurricane Florence prepared me for the preparations involved with preparing for a hurricane. This year, the day we got back from vacation, Tim's boss texted and said we needed to start watching for a storm called Dorian.

It was almost two weeks before Hurricane Dorian hit us in South Carolina. She grew in intensity, weakened, stalled, changed directions, and pretty much did whatever she wanted. Meanwhile we planned. We made Plan A then Plan B and then something I never expected Plan C.

We live in Zone A which the governor had declared was under mandatory evacuation. I thought we were leaving with a group of older adults to take them to Columbia, SC. At the last minute the seniors decided they wanted to ride out the storm. This group are independent residents and all signed waivers. All of the residents who required care were sent to other communities.

We'd already gotten the house prepared for the hurricane. Instead of evacuating to Columbia, we went to the senior community to be around just in case. We evacuated to the other side of Highway 17. I'm not a Carolina girl who is used to hurricanes. I was freaking out a little. Make that a lot.

Then I became ill. I couldn't have driven one of the cars to Columbia because I was too sick. I rode out the hurricane on an air mattress. If I wasn't sick, I was sleeping.

God showed me that it didn't matter how much I worried or planned, He was in control.

Luke 12:6-8 New International Version
Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows.

Yes, there were times I was afraid, but all I could do was lay there and trust God.

Monday, August 26, 2019

Exciting News

Psalm 37:4 English Standard Version
Delight yourself in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.

I promised you some exciting news. I just signed a three-book-contract with BelleBooks for a cozy mystery series. The first book is scheduled to come out in the spring of 2020!

If I could do a cartwheel, I would. Instead, I'm feeling truly blessed and thankful! God is good!

Monday, August 19, 2019

Something Exciting is Coming Up

I'm taking this week off, but I plan to share something exciting next week. I'll give you a hint. I've dreamed of this for a long time!

God has delighted me, and I'm so thankful!

Psalm 37:4 English Standard Version
Delight yourself in the Lord,
and he will give you the desires of your heart.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Zach Williams - No Longer Slaves (Live from Harding Prison)

I'm no longer a slave to fear. We all have fears, and I find this song so powerful.

Here are a few scriptures on fear:

Joshua 1:9 New International Version
"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”

Matthew 6:34 New International Version "Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own."

Psalm 23:4 New International Version "Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
they comfort me."

And another beautiful verse is Psalm 34:4 New International Version "I sought the Lord, and he answered me;
he delivered me from all my fears."

How amazing is that? If you struggle with fear, open your Bible and be comforted.

Wednesday, August 7, 2019

El Paso Challenge

After the El Paso shooting, Ruben Martinez challenged others in his community to remember the victims with acts of kindness. What an amazing challenge, but the thing that makes it more interesting is that Ruben is only eleven years old.

This child is daring us to honor the victims. At first the challenge was to do twenty acts of kindness. It's risen to twenty-two acts of kindness today. These are not random acts of kindness. I feel like we are to be intentional in performing these acts.

If you need help coming up with ideas, Ruben has some to share. Mow a yard, visit a nursing home, pay for someone's lunch or dinner, donating for families in need, taking flowers to the hospital, or writing a letter to someone telling them how great they are.

If we perform twenty-two acts of kindness, I think we'll want to keep performing acts of kindness. Wouldn't it be great if Ruben's challenge made the world a better place?

I know nothing about Ruben's faith, but I do know he's a child. A child of God. He's important to God, his family, me, and the world.

At that time the disciples came to Jesus and asked, “Who, then, is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”

He called a little child to him, and placed the child among them. And he said: “Truly I tell you, unless you change and become like little children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore, whoever takes the lowly position of this child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. And whoever welcomes one such child in my name welcomes me.”
Matthew 18:1-5

People were also bringing babies to Jesus for him to place his hands on them. When the disciples saw this, they rebuked them. But Jesus called the children to him and said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of God belongs to such as these. Truly I tell you, anyone who will not receive the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.”
Luke 18:15-17

Monet's Garden

In August, Tim and I traveled to France. We're not any kind of jet setters, but I've dreamed about visiting France for as long as I ...