Blog Post: Things to Remember

Will the Real You Please Stand?

Do you ever see someone else and suddenly do a double take? Maybe they look like your twin. Are wearing something you own. Saying something you would say. Have the same name and hair color. Or they have some quirky mannerism you have been teased about all your life. Anyway, you stop and stare and can’t quite tear your eyes away from them, even if you are beginning to feel a bit like a scary stalker.

We were ordering ice cream when I turned around and there was a lady walking towards us with her husband and kids. And darn, if she wasn’t wearing my skirt — the same blue pencil skirt splashed with brown and tan flowers that I had at home in my closet. Continue Reading . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

What is Helping You Survive These Winter Months?

Where I live, it is cold outside. And if I could, I would head to a warm spot to wait out winter. But I can’t. And I assume you can’t either. So, what are we to do? We need to find things that bring us happiness and sustain us now. We don't want to wait until it is spring to be happy.My grandparents headed to Arizona during the winter months, leaving me wondering why they left every year and why on Sunday nights we couldn’t visit them. Now with each passing winter, I understand more and more why they headed south. South towards the sun and warm balmy days.

Heading south is not an option, though. Even if I live where it is cold outside. So, what are we to do? Continue reading . . .

Life as it Comes: Podcast #42

Cough Notes

A humorous podcast about life.The flu never sneaks up, like a silent cat getting closer and closer. No. Wham, bam, the flu hits you over the head and wrestles you to the ground and hog ties you to the bed for days. And when you do get up, you feel like a wrung washcloth that is dehydrated and limp.

We were also left with a cough that seemed to never depart. I thought of a great way to make money on our cough, but the boys . . . well, their enthusiasm was less than great. Some people just have a hard time seeing the big picture.  Listen and find out what happens.

Guest Post: The Nervous Breakdown

Motels, Sisters, and Cardboard Boxes

Sometimes a gal needs to get away. My sister and I had been talking about taking a trip together. No kids. No husbands. Just her and me for four whole glorious days. Our first ever sisters trip. We would be able to talk and giggle all night. Walk around in our underwear. Share lipstick. See girly tourist sights and stores no male eyes want to bother observing. Go to tea or coffee and sit all day chatting about all the things that connect us and make us sisters that share the same blood and childhood so that we know each other better than ourselves. Continue reading here at The Nervous Breakdown.

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Free Sometimes Really Means Free

Repeatedly the company calls. I have been selected to win this absolutely free, three-day cruise. I roll my eyes, make some sarcastic remark, and hang up. Just before the voice tells me to push a button and claim my free-gift.

Momma was right. “If it sounds too good to be true; it is.” Yup, they just happened to call me (out of the all the other millions of people) to offer me a trip to some exotic place. Three days on a boat. Free.

Each time they call, I hung up and start laughing. Free? Sure? This offer seemed way to good. There had to be a catch. Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Email Euphoria

Sometimes we do something without thinking through the consequences. And that mistake turns into a blessing in disguise. Need some encouragement and humor? This story is for you.Sometimes we do things without really thinking through the consequences. Okay, in all honesty, sometimes without even thinking. Sometimes it is just to tough to think about what we need to do next, and during those times I certainly don’t plot a straight line as to what this step will lead to all the way into the future. Especially when that thing is a little thing. Or what I think is a little thing. And especially when I am running on automatic pilot. Full steam ahead, sit back and get it done.

Well this kind of automatic pilot can sometimes get me into  trouble. Continue Reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Sometimes We Just Need to Believe

I am reading Mathew and in this chapter Jesus is healing one person after another. Boom, bam, slam. Left and right. Broken and unwell people are brought to him. He heals them. Restores them to health. Forgives their sins. The response of the healed? Joy. Amazement. A wanting to tell everyone and show everyone their restored bodies, the miracle performed on them, for them.

The response of the crowds and those who witness the now speaking, seeing, walking, and coherent healed? People are amazed. Scared. Doubting. Questioning. Angry. Believing. Hurrying Jesus out of town. Running to get their sick cousins, aunts, and uncles.

What  would my response be if I had been standing on the sidelines? Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Relearning the Same Thing, Again

Sometimes it seems as if my life is on replay. Or maybe that it is punctuated with Deja-vu moments.

We were driving across Indiana when it began happening. My son was shivering and not feeling well. Basically miserable, he was, and I was trying to comfort him. Encourage him that this too shall pass. When it did pass. Up from his stomach and out onto his father’s coat that was lying across his body, the back seat, floor, and my shoes. Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Imagine if You Can, How a Yes Changed it All

Can you imagine a world without Jesus?

A world where he was never born?

A world where our sins were not forgiven?

A world where grace and love were not free commodities?  Continue reading . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

What Turns You into  Screeching Tea Kettle?

Once when my mom questioned me about a fight I had gotten into with my sibling, I blurted out the classic excuse. “They made me so mad.”  If you have been alive for very long, you have either heard this excuse or used it. Because it is the classic point-the-finger-at-the-other-person excuse. The I-am-innocent-and-they-are-guilty excuse. The it-is-their-fault excuse. I remember my mom saying, “No one makes you mad, Theresa. You allowed yourself to get mad.”  Needless to say, I was a little disappointed that my excuse didn’t work.  I didn’t want to hear about and admit my own responsibility in the situation, I wanted my sibling fairly tried and executed. Or at least disciplined. Read here . . .

Life as it Comes: Podcast # 41

Houdini, the Furry Escape Artist

A humorous podcast about life.If Houdini came back as a tongue lolling, tail wagging, and chest panting dog, I know which dog his spirit would reside within. The dog our friends owned and which we babysat. List to this story podcast and see if you know a dog like this. Listen here . . .





Blog Post: Things to Remember

Why Getting to Know All About You is a Good Idea: 5 Benefits

I had been married for a little over ten years when an engaged friend asked for one important piece of marriage advice.  Well, this tested my grey matter. Not because I truly know nothing about marriage, although it seems I know less the longer I have been married, but because I guess no one had ever asked me this before.  One piece of marriage advice? I pondered this challenge.  Smoke must have been beginning to seep from my ears as I tried to calculate an answer. Something worthy of great wisdom. Something she had not heard before. Something she could really use. I felt like Houdini bound in chains and a straitjacket trying to wiggle free in front of an audience.  Read more here .  . .  

Guest Post: Her View From Home

Counting Blessings on a Card Table

Thanksgiving was a big deal at our house when I was growing up.  So, naturally, when I married and started hosting my own, I continued the tradition.  Time and energy were put into planning the menu, decorating, cleaning the house, pulling out the best china and tablecloths. The night before I would bake at least four desserts. I wanted to present the best food and experience for the guests.  One year, I realized that while we had celebrated Thanksgiving with all kinds of family and friends, I had not spent a Thanksgiving with my dad for twenty-some years, mainly because my mom divorced him the same year I got married. Continue Reading here . . . 

Guest Post: Mothering Beyond Expectations

Dear First Time Mom

Congratulations! You have joined the honored circle of motherhood. It may look like most mothers have it all together, but the truth is, they really don’t. Most of us are trying to stay one step ahead of our children. Remember this. None of us have children and motherhood all figured out. None of us have it all together.

Here is a partial list of things to remember as a first-time mother. Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

How and Why We Must Learn to Say No

We women are nurtures, caretakers, lovers of others, and let-me-help-you serving machines. And that is wonderful and good. But these traits can cause trouble when we start getting to many tasks on our plates and wear ourselves out. You ever done that? Over committed and burned the oil of too-much-to-accomplish on both ends of the calendar page?  I have. And not only do I suffer, but those around me suffer. I get tired and cranky and very-little-patience fits me to a tee. And then I often topple into the martyr syndrome.  Not a pretty sight. And in that not-so-pretty-state, I am not helping myself or others very effectively. Which means I am not accomplishing what I set out to do. My desire to say yes is backfiring like a stubborn car with an engine problem. And if anyone will listen, my complaints are about as loud.  So, how can we learn to say no? Read how here . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Why We Can’t Say No, But Must

We women can be focused driven work machines. We strive to accomplish more than possible, spin the gears nonstop until after the day is done, and are often multi-tasking like a pro. We can change diapers with our eyes closed while planning a mental to-do list for the next 24 hours, cook dinner and give an oral spelling test at the same time, slam dunk a presentation at work and then transition to shuttling the kids to sports. Such is the skill of most women.  We are not born capable, multitasking, accomplish-all machines, but as time passes and we reach adulthood and acquire more responsibility, we hone and refine this hurry-and-accomplish-all-that-life-throws at us skill.  And this is a good thing.  But it can also be a not so good thing.  Continue Reading . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

The Weight of Words, Because They Matter

Words can inspire. They can paint a picture of hope. They can cause excitement. Words can disappoint. They can deceive. They can depress. The words that we select everyday, the words that bubble out of our mouth filling the air with sounds, the words we use to communicate, give commands, and tell a story can take so many roles. Comfort. Shame. Empower. Guilt. Convince. Convict. Cheer. Pain. Save. Destroy. Words have weight. They can slice to the nerve or tease a smile. They can change the direction of our life and influence our perception of our self, others, and the world. Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Changing the World with the Everyday Mundane

Dear Beautiful Important One:  Yes, I am talking to you!  Sometimes our life seems normal. Mundane. Routine. Boring.  Very little excitement is popping into our daily grind, except when we sleep through our alarm and try to get ready in less than 2 minutes. Which of course can’t be done. Or maybe you count the dog getting sick in the middle of the living room rug as a change of pace. Or the news that your child who was too shy to speak in class, is now the class clown and was sent to the principal’s office three times last week.  Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Relaxing in His Love

Watch new parents holding their tiny newborn and you instinctively smile, slow down a little, and feel all snuggly yourself. They cradle their baby so tenderly, coo and smile and baby talk quietly, and without thinking they often start rocking and moving a little bit. It is all so precious and beautiful.
And when they hand their treasured bundle to you, you start doing the same thing. Instinctively you are gentle. And without any warning, your heart swells with love and concern for this little one. When the baby’s eyes open and look at you, full of trust and squinting at the bright lights, you smile back and whisper nonsense. And if the baby smiles at you, or at least moves their lips into some form of an almost smile, well then you consider yourself blessed and brag to everyone that the baby smiled at you.  Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

The Illusion of Control

When we were dating, my hubby-to-be said that no child of his would pick their nose. How this conversation came about, I don’t remember. Maybe we were talking about pet peeves, or maybe we were stopped at a stoplight and there in the next car was a picker. Or maybe there was a small child nearby with his finger up his nose, grossing out my hubby-to-be. I remember saying, “Really?” After all, I felt I had a bit more experience on this topic. I had a brother and sister 16 and 13 years younger than me and I had babysat little ones. In my mind my experience stacked up pretty high, compared to his lack of experience. “Yes. No picking,” he said with authority. I remember just laughing a little and saying, “What are you going to do? Put corks up their nostrils?”  Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Misspoken Prayers

My husband surprised me. There we were in church during prayer time. The beautiful time set aside to speak prayer requests into audible formation. The time just before we have communion and are fed as part of the family. He started praying for me. Blessings on my trip and time away for a few days to connect with other writers. My heart about melts. Prayers finish drifting heavenward. We are sitting there in the slight lull, and he leans over. “Ooops, I was also going to add . . .  . . . . . and I forgot,” he says.” Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

What We All Need: Now and Forever

From the time he was little, I have tried to let my son know that he is a blessing to our family. That without him our family would be missing something. “What would I do without you?” I would sometimes ask him. “I don’t know.” He would say. “I would have no little boy to read to, or tuck in bed, or tickle until he laughs,” I would say. Or something similar to let him know he was loved. One day, when he was around 6 or 7, we were in the kitchen together and I asked him if he knew how much I loved him? “No,” he teased. “Bigger than the universe,” I said. And then I asked. “What would I do without you?”
And for the first time he didn’t even hesitate. he said, “Without me you would be sitting around the house all day just crying.” Continue reading here . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Getting Through the Tube

Sometimes the past sneaks up and bonks you on the head with a two-by-four and you are left gasping for breath and life.
When I checked in at the clinic there was no warning sign of what lay ahead. Nor was my memory yelling stop.
Maybe because the lady who checked me in had red hair and lots of freckles. Just like me. In fact I couldn’t help looking at all her freckles and wondering who had more. When she asked me to hold out my wrist so she could slip a plastic identification bracelet around it, I joked and asked if that was because they were afraid I might faint and they needed to know who to call?  Continue reading here . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

Why is There Always Something to Complain About?

There is never a lack of things to complain about. Never a shortage. Rations are not ever enforced on complaints. No little man ever pops up and says, “Ma’am. I am sorry, but you’ve used all your complaints for the day. You will have to wait until tomorrow to begin complaining again. At midnight your allowance for complaints will be refilled. Until then I need you to refrain from complaining.”
And not only do we complain out loud to our husbands, friends, children, neighbors, the cashier at the grocery store, and anyone who we think will listen and not report us to the complaining police, we even complain in our mind. Silently, we complain and whine and think, “Oh no, not again.” Continue reading  . . .

Blog Post: Things to Remember

How to Stop an Argument

It’s a good feeling when people agree with us. When the person we are talking to is nodding their head and confirming our opinions and ideas, our likes and dislikes. Yes, to that decision. No, to that idea and political party. Yup, to our excitingly good idea. Definitely vanilla over chocolate.  Problem is, not everyone agrees with us. Not everyone thinks our way is the right way. The better way. Or even the only way. Continue reading here . .