Thursday, January 28, 2016

Voices in My Head - Talking to Myself

Recently I was reading an article about conversations we have with other people. It gave some  clinical rules of the road for social conversations. It was a bit heavy-handed and included a bunch of research and obviously sought to help others. Now, I don't want to short-change science and I am the first to admit that I have not a scientific bone in my body. I know that how we speak with others is important. Our tone, our word choice, everything comes together to create the sum of communication.

In my line of very unscientific heart-thinking,

Monday, January 25, 2016

RX: A Good Friend and Conversation

This past weekend I was fortunate to spend with a long-time friend. I accompanied her on a business trip so that she wouldn't be driving alone and we had plenty of free time to fill on the long drive and between meetings.

I have known Shelly since the beginning of high school. I have always admired her vim and vigor for life. She is one of those people that loves to be active and busy. She not only runs, bikes, and all the normal stuff but loves pickle ball and even had a skydiving adventure this past summer!  As we reminisced this weekend, we spent plenty of high school days in my orange Datsun B210 and eating Taco Bell. (Who doesn't eat Taco Bell 24/7 when you are in high school? Don't judge!)We currently live in the same city and see each other with some regularity, but now we had an entire, glorious weekend!

We talked our heads off!

Honestly, before I even got into the car

Friday, January 22, 2016

It's Your Life

At our first Real Gurl Life meeting last week we took on the challenge to raise our efforts a little bit, just one degree. We are going to try just a little bit harder, love just a little bit longer, give just a little bit more, forgive just a few more times.

Here's the thing....If you are looking for change in your life, it isn't just gonna come up and smack you in the face. Change requires something be different. There must be movement, either more or less, to create change. You will be waiting a long time for the results YOU want if you cannot choose to make a change.

Here's a great thing about change....Change brings Hope. Most people do not deal very well with change. In fact, most folks avoid it.

Ever try to get help moving the living room furniture around? Ha!

How about letting your hairdresser choose a new haircut? No way!

Just try it! You will find it to be true that Change  will make you feel alive. It brings Hope that something can be different. You either get busy changing or get busy dying, as the saying goes.

So....Whatcha gonna do? It's your life!

Change something.


Tuesday, January 19, 2016

My Peeps ~ I Have Found Them!

Tonight went better than in my best dreams! We had 24 friends attend and I have found my peeps! It is good to come together and share our lives, to hear something new, to get a fresh take on things. One person is very limited in information but 24 women have an abundance of experience. Thank you ladies, for being part of my calling tonight. I will never forget this first meeting. I am blessed.

Remember, it just takes that one degree of difference, just that little bit more, and the water turns to steam that can run a locomotive. Just give it a little bit more and see what happens!

Enjoy the pics!

Saturday, January 16, 2016

It's Almost Here - First Introductory Meeting!

Tuesday, January 19, 2016
6:30-8:00 p.m.
East Hill Church - Kid City Bakery Classroom

Every Second Tuesday we will be holding a monthly meeting for Real Gurl Life. These meetings will be held from 6:30-8:00 p.m. and location for each meeting is posted on The Schedule on the website, for your convenience.

Note: If you LIKE our Facebook page or sign-up on the website to receive updates, you will be sure to get an invite to any activity that Real Gurl Life offers.

Real Gurl Life has a heart for women who may feel like life will never change; who may feel stuck with no way out or needing a fresh outlook; who may be looking for encouragement; and mostly to provide skills and tools to live an "authentically imperfect" life with passion. Collectively and in small groups we will search out who God called us to be and discover the joy of serving others. Friendship building is an important part of Real Gurl Life and we will offer networking activities as well as a lesson at each meeting. It's important to have friends!

Events will also be set up, mostly on a quarterly basis. The first quarter activity will be Eat, Pray, Books!  You will find out more about
this fun, networking, friendship-making event very shortly!

Real Gurl Life will also hold varying skill building classes each quarter. There are a wide variety of topics and dependent upon each woman's interest. The topics are also listed on the website under Study Series. There will Bible studies, marriage, self-awareness, parenting and more. The classes available will rotate each quarter.

You will learn a lot more about Real Gurl Life at THIS First Introductory Meeting! I am looking forward to you joining us as often as you can and please always feel free to bring a friend!

If your church would like to host a meeting of Real Gurl Life or are looking for an event speaker, please do not hesitate to let us know.

We will make every effort to honor your time and end on time. We know you are all busy ladies! Please help us by being ready at 6:30 p.m. to start the fun!

See you there! I just can't wait!

Thursday, January 14, 2016

The Way I See It - Day 13

The day started off better than most and I was feeling happy and fulfilled until.....the lion roared.

It is difficult to set boundaries. I hate dealing with the confusion of when to be tough and when it's not as big a deal as I am making it. I do understand how important boundaries are, and I am trying.

So I go "all-quiet" and distance myself from the situation while nursing the continual wound that keeps getting reopened with too much regularity. In an effort to get further away, I text my daughter and ask if she possibly needs me for babysitting any earlier.  How awesome to find out that she was already on her way to me to go on a ride to Salem for her work.

I quickly got ready and walked outside to the car where she was feeding the baby. Off we went down I-205 South to Salem. Weather was rainy but the traffic was not so bad. We hit our exit and were just a block away from our intended destination when we entered the left-hand turn lane with traffic signal. We had a car waiting at the light in front of us and just as we neared the car ahead, another car jumped into the turn lane....well, actually they jumped smacked into my daughter's car! Metal hit metal with the quick sound of fingernails on a chalkboard. We had been hit!

Tuesday, January 12, 2016

Sore Spot? Everybody's Got One -Day 12

It is tough to admit when you face a loss, a failure, defeat...Most of us cannot bring ourselves to admit we even have a problem. It feels too close to our sore spot. The spot that appeared unnoticed until that sudden knife-like pain hits us unexpectedly and makes us react with a vengeance, wondering where in the heck did that crazy reaction come from?

I am hoping you understand me here, because, gosh, I hate to be out here on my own with this stuff.

I am going to admit to you that today, someone hit my sore spot. My reaction wasn't vengeance, unless you count crying over half the day as such.

Sore spot? Everybody's got one.

As I was writing of the glories of answered prayers yesterday, today held different answers. Or, to be precise, the answers from yesterday were changed. I felt deflated. I felt it in my sore spot. The brooding and the endless questioning began. Unfortunately, I had no plans today so I had time to entertain those two knuckleheads: Brooding and Questions.

Monday, January 11, 2016

Want Relief? Relax

It was my intent to post every single day as a new year resolution but wouldn't you know it, the first weekend out, and boom! I fall off the wagon of my goal to post every day. It is very rare that I have such a busy weekend. We had a family birthday, church, family football game watch and Sunday dinner. It was a great weekend and I feel completely rejuvenated, although I have to admit that I felt guilty about the lack of posting.

When I went into the weekend, I had many things on my mind. Some of them were problems, some of them were wants, and some of them were real issues that needed answers. I have a lot of questions about the direction of my life, my health, and I do a great deal of soul-searching. I am always looking for a clue to the answer. I want answers to hurry up and get here!

As I sat in church service with my family and we sang songs to God, I was overcome with answers pouring out. The pastor and his wife also provided the message. I don't know what everyone else heard, but I heard that I need to follow my calling, wherever that may lead and no matter who is for or against me.

I also heard something else important. Many of you know that I will be revealing my Word for 2016.  You see, for the past two years I have been working on congruency. This year I have a new mantra, but I felt like God added to that mantra. He added:  Relax. (The rest  of my mantra is to be revealed at the first Real Gurl Life meeting on January 19th. Visit for details.)


As I rolled that word around in my mouth, seeing how it tasted, I could see myself from an outside perspective and understood immediately what it all meant.

You see, I am someone who sees the big picture pretty quickly. I can usually make good, solid, decisions in a moment of necessity because of seeing the big picture. I rush to answers before anyone else takes a breath. I have it all laid out and decided without any other input and while the group may eventually arrive at the same decision, I have generally alienated the group by my hasty arrival at the end result without due process or hearing one opinion.


Let it roll. Don't be the first to respond. Play it cool. Fly casual. Be thoughtful about when and how to answer.

You know, as I rolled the word around some more, it was not only Relax, it felt like Relief. What? I don't have to bear the burden of figuring it all out? That sounds good! I can let go and have some relief! A spiritual need for change: Relax.


Before the weekend even started, I received an email from a women's convention asking me to consider being the speaker for the two-day retreat this year. What? This is something I have only dreamed of doing. Speaking? I thought it would be a very long while before this would come my way. I am honored by the request and excited by this move forward in my life. A personal dream answered.

On Monday, today, following the weekend, I received a call about a health issue. The doctor called to say my surgery was approved! It was up in the air and I was hoping it would be approved. The doctor had already requested approval last year and it was denied. The doctor put through the paperwork again with my new insurance for 2016 and it was approved in a matter of days! A health issue: approved.

So in one weekend, God provided, in His own way, in His own timing, answers to:

a spiritual need for change; Relax
a personal dream; Speak
a health issue; Approved

No kidding, it felt like by letting go, not being in a hurry to answer the question, by taking the "Relax" approach, I was able to actually "Relax" and give up trying to figure it out on my own. I could let the answers come and not be in a hurry. I could be accepting of the answers because I am under God's umbrella, as is every thing and every person in my life.

Real Gurls, it is time that we let go and what we are holding onto so tightly and roll with God's plan. I am going to continue to challenge myself with the question:

What are you doing today to make this year different?  

What are you doing today?

Thursday, January 7, 2016

Control Status: Mercy - Day 7 of My New Year

It feels like nothing of any substance happened today and I am wondering what should I write about. So let me start by telling you about my day:

First, I am at the end of two weeks dog-sitting. That means for the past 14 days I have had three pups with completely different temperaments trying to share the same bowls, yard, and lap. In a way I have enjoyed the doggie daycare. It was fun watching them bounce through the white snow and learn to wrassle and get along with each other. Three dogs is different from two, and it was interesting and fun. Still, it's more than I am used to regularly handling.

We also had our regular, weekly visit from my roommate's son, who is three years old. He stays for two days and sleeps over. He is a great kid and I love him to pieces. I enjoy his sweet ways and fun spirit and there is always something going on. Spiderman, snack, play-doh, Hot Wheels, puzzles and games: he is full of constant action.

Again, more moving pieces than I am used to and I find I am grappling with...oh, dear

Wednesday, January 6, 2016

Fight for the Couch - Day 6 of My New Year

Two days in a row I have started my day without first stopping to read, pray and journal! It is a rut that has deep grooves. It will take more effort to change the path to the kitchen, first thing in the morning!

But it does cause me to pause and think. We do what we get accustomed to; we set a pattern, a rut, a rhythm to our own lives; a comfort zone, if you will. Yep, we run back to our comfort zone the minute we hit

Tuesday, January 5, 2016

Kerfuffled (Day 5)

I popped right out of bed this morning to begin the day with three dogs bouncing, chasing, wagging, running, whining, and just chaos in general. It was fun and joyful and we easily fell into the routine of the day: cleaning the kitchen, reading mail, and figuring out if the roads were too icy to go out. And that's when it began:


The first time I heard this word it was said by my then 7th grade daughter. She also said funny things like "cool beans"  and this one really made me giggle. It clearly says (for me) how it feels to feel like you lost your place. What was I doing? What should I be doing? Why am I in THIS room? Oh, gosh....


What had happened? I wasn't having those same confident emotions

Monday, January 4, 2016

This. One. Day. (Day 4)

Today I am stressing continuity. Just the simple act of sitting down and following my new morning ritual is changing me. I read, I pray, I journal, I restate the question to start the day:

"What am I doing today so that this year will be different?"

I will ask myself this several times throughout the day. Each time I think of it, each time I start to doubt, each time fear or sadness tries to creep in,

Facing the Future

January 3, 2016 and it's  Day 3 of my new year. I have turned my face to the future and what it holds. I am determined to put the past in its place. I will ask myself every day "what are you doing today to make this year turn out different?"  It's going to be a good year!