Happy Heart {Celebrations}

February 22, 2014

Celebrate the big and little moments in life with the writing community at Ruth Ayres Writes. Try it! Your heart will be encouraged.

Celebrate the big and little moments in life with the writing community at Ruth Ayres Writes. Try it! Your heart will be encouraged.

I’m celebrating sharing the book, Sophie Skates, in connection with the Winter Olympics. I love watching the gracefulness of skaters.Sophie Skates

 

I celebrated (and am still celebrating) my college son who sent me a delightful picture text. My smile ignited!

Valentine's present reciprocated a thank you text.

Valentine’s present reciprocated a thank you text.

BelieveI’m jumping for joy: the Powerpoint is ready for my presentation next week. I have been working on this idea of a book (thanks to my dear BONS group) for Noticing Craft in the Books You Love. I have written a draft and another and yet another. And then it has sat, away. This time, I didn’t reread anything I had written. I began with a blank page for an outline. The explanation seemed clearer. In fact, the points were there all along; I just needed time to reflect, to believe, to try again.

BONS, thank you! We finally were able to meet – no snow, no rain, no schedules.  Wait – yes, there has been but we overcame! (Missed you, Tam.) My email title was “Desperate to Meet”. We listened, shared, celebrated. And we laughed!!! My dear friend, Tammy, is the best story-teller. The snowsuit story definitely is one I will remember – and needs to be written. You rival Robert Munch on that one, my dear friend.

 
The best smiles ever! BONdS forever we’ll be! (Tammy and Ruth)

 

 


Did I mention…? {SOL}

February 18, 2014

Did I mention my children to you lately?
Did I mention how my thoughts are on them so much these days?
Did I mention that the years, months, days now seem like hours left to share?

Did I mention how I do Wesley’s laundry so I can see a glimpse of him each week?
Did I mention he is a junior in college according to credits, is playing baseball, mastered the 6 minute mile at 5:48, is learning to throw a new pitch and looks promising to be on the varsity lineup?
Did I mention I text him just to say I am thinking and praying for him to receive a delightful, meaningful response in thanks?

Did I mention Tim is playing basketball and is a team vocal leader?
Did I mention his timid personality is changing into a confident, quiet young man, who is trusting the words of his parents and Lord?
Did I mention he loves helping the little kids during the mid-week youth activities and is learning to be responsible, trying to be gentle through play and gracious with words?

Did I mention Elizabeth loves helping people?
Did I mention she likes volunteering at the blood drive, loving on her preschool mid-week kids, teaching and admonishing them?
Did I mention the wrestling coach relies on her to take charge of the stats, equipment, and even his keys (which he continually seems to misplace)?

Did I mention my kids decide to talk to me in the middle of an activity and how I am listening?
Did I mention how time has passed too quickly for this mother of teenagers?
Did I mention how I love my children, grab hold of the moments, and tuck them into my memory?

Did I mention … these fleeting thoughts on a cold, snowy morning are just a glimpse into my heart?


Motivated {Celebrating}

February 8, 2014

I am joining in celebrating big and little accomplishments throughout the week at Ruth Ayres Writes.

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Notebook:
I am using a new notebook to help organize my to do lists. I LOVE placing a line through accomplished tasks. Eleanor Roosevelt is one of my heros, so the cover was quite fitting!

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Writing:
Yesterday I wrote that I conquered my writing monster this week. I have a two page outline for a presentation March 1 on finding craft in the books you love. I just needed to get over the blank page. I am really excited now! When one snow day turns into three, I choose to be proactive and positive!

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First Win:
Basketball has been a stretching experience for our freshman, Tim. The team has lost every game. Varsity has only won one. Tough season. Tim had originally planned to help out his friend to have a freshman team. Only 13 boys decided to commit to the team- total for varsity and JV. I have driven many miles to get him to practice, even on snow days. Their dedication paid off! They won last night! An exciting game for a proud mom!

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Write {Five Minute Friday}

February 6, 2014

Today’s prompt: Write.
Write. It’s good for you, my friend, Ruth Ayres shares, believes, practices.
Her encouraging voice whispers in my head. I can see Elsie, Linda, Christy and my BONS nodding in agreement. Those words sweep away the nagging writing monster in my head quipping, “Your writing isn’t eloquent, not worthy.” Ugh! I hate the fact that I allow that thought to linger, a fight I have often.

But today, the monster is crushed.
Today, the thoughts that have been swirling in my head are being captured by a pen.
Today I write …
and it feels good!

Stop.

I am participating in Five Minute Friday hosted by Lisa-Jo Baker. Will you join me?

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Downsizing {SOL}

January 28, 2014

Let me introduce you to the work I have been doing the past several days.

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I have been downsizing. Yep, I have been reviewing binders, folders, lessons so neatly tucked away in file cabinets and shelves. Why? You ask. Besides the fact that I have collected lessons and articles and notes for the past twenty years. Besides the fact that my job description has changed the past few years. The fact is I have to! You see our current school building is old and has been renovated and repaired many times. It is now time for a new building. (Rejoice! Yippee! :)) That’s how I felt – excited about a new place, a more modern atmosphere, updates all around. That’s how I felt … Until I learned that my teaching space would be reduced greatly in the new building. Without boring you with details, I will say that I am found peace in my anticipated new school. I will find places for my books AND the Title I resources. I just have to make adjustments.

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I am making space by downsizing materials. I actually have been enjoying going through lessons, pulling double sets of handouts or duplicate lessons. I have learned to rely on my computer files and don’t have to have a paper copy. And transparencies- please, so ancient (I can’t believe I having just verbalized my thinking). By downsizing, I am being proactive (my one little word for the year). I am freeing up space for the important things – my books!!!

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Thank you, snow, for the extra time off. I have been working diligently, downsizing. :)


Time {Celebrations}

January 25, 2014

Time is an element in my life that seems to disappear. Time really doesn’t float away, but the way I choose to fill it can slice away at it. I am usually wishing for more time.

Snow: Due to the snow and bitter temperatures, I have been granted extra time. I am thrilled!!!

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Laundry: the chore that is never ending. Today I did a jig as I was elated to see the laundry hamper empty. My washing machine was silent. For today, I am thrilled to capture this infrequent moment of satisfaction.

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Decorations: I love snowmen decor for the winter months. Drifting snow outside isn’t so fun, but I like to think the snow people are having a grand ball.

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Harley: my dog is adorable! We have cuddled and played during the extra time shared. I am accepting the fact that Harley is attached to my father-in-law. I believe Harley senses his need for companionship, so I am learning to share his love.

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Children: I have chauffeured my children to and from practice, friends homes, and shared on errands. I love the time I have with them in conversation. The van is a great spot to listen.
Wesley is back at college. He texted yesterday that he is featured on the Grace college promo video. He is in motion for only two seconds, but I am a proud mama. You can see him around the 1min. 52 sec. Of the 3 min. video at http://www.grace.edu. The video is under the heading “Beyond Grace”.

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Asante Choir: a children’s choir from Africa performed at our church on Wed. Their ages were from 5 to 14. After serving them supper, each child came and hugged me in the kitchen. They told us “thank you”. My heart melted!! Their performance was lively, uplifting, and full of blessings. Most have been orphaned from the wars and AIDS. We have much to be thankful and to celebrate!

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{SOL} Pictures to Hold the Story

January 14, 2014
Elizabeth and her best friend spent time together. They are managers for the wrestling team. I learn more stories listening to them. :)

Elizabeth and her best friend spent time together. They are managers for the wrestling team. I learn more stories listening to them. :)

My blog has been silent but my heart has not. This mother has been gathering comments, moments, laughter to her heart. My children were together for three weeks, filled with family, activity, and stories. The extra snow has us stranded together and we loved it. Between snuggling with my dog or cat, sipping coffee in the early mornings to  rearranging, sorting, and completing projects, we were together. Pictures below will give you a snippet-look into our family time. Loved it all!

Harley loves to lay on the heater during these cold, below zero days.

Harley loves to lay on the heater during these cold, below zero days. While he relaxed, we removed a wall in the basement, opening an area for exercise. Wes also laid carpet in our bathroom. He gave the gift of help.

Three kids hold my heart forever!

Three kids hold my heart forever! With Elizabeth being a junior in high school and Tim a freshman, the moments together are being held on to even more. We loved having Wesley home. He is a natural story teller and brings them out from everyone.

Wes showed me how to do a selfie on my new phone.

Wes showed me how to do a selfie on my new phone.

My sister-in-law is an awesome hostess. We are now treated to having family near by for the holidays.

My sister-in-law is an awesome hostess. We are now treated to having family near by for the holidays.

New Year's Eve was spent together sharing memories, stories of the brothers as kids, dreams for the future, and games for the present.

New Year’s Eve was spent together sharing memories, stories of the brothers (my husband, Rick, and Uncle Bart) as kids, dreams for the future, and games for the present. My niece is adorable, full of life.

Kip has learned to tolerate our new dog. He still loves to purr next to me when I am reading.

Kip has learned to tolerate our new dog. He still loves to purr next to me when I am reading.

Tim is playing basketball and so I was chauffeuring him to practices throughout break. I have a story about his experience.

Tim is playing basketball and so I chauffeured  him to practices throughout break. I have a story about his experience.

Snow hit heavy. The boys went out four times shoveling the drive, casting the huge mound. On the third day, the kids reminisced about forts they had made in the past. With temps below zero, they shoveled out a tunnel and had fun.

Snow hit heavy. The boys went out four times shoveling the drive, creating the huge mound. On the third day, the kids reminisced about forts they had made in the past. With temps below zero, they shoveled out a tunnel and had fun.

Our hearts were wrapped in belonging, loved and embraced! I am thankful.

Our hearts were wrapped in belonging, loved and embraced! I am thankful.


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