Monday, August 19, 2019

The weekend that we were DEEPLY ROOTED

What a wonderful weekend.

Not only did I get to skip a weekend of iron infusions... I got to spent it worshiping our Savior with about 6,000 of my Sisters in Christ.

How do you not call that a wonderful weekend?

... & you know what happens with wonderful weekends - this is gonna be a long post #sorrynotsorry
but if you make it through, there's lots of good stuff from the weekend so hope you stick with me here.

Image may contain: one or more people, crowd, stadium, concert, night, basketball court and outdoor

Friday, I took off work & tried to sleep in some because I knew it was going to be a long day & a late night. Ernie says forget that & still wakes me up around 7 - because he's a good boy & looks out for his momma - or he's a spoiled little boy who just wants attention all the moments of the day. ... it's more that 2nd one.

But I needed to get up anyways because I hadnt even begun to pack or get anything together.  I got up & made Ricky & I some breakfast - yeah, he was off work too because we had our house roof re-shingled & our garage was getting done on Friday. Ricky wanted to make sure the dogs were OK & not freaking out all day by themselves so he took off work.  Plus, he had a doctor's appointment on Friday - so it just worked out well. Plus, I was glad to spend that time with him in the morning.

Chasity came & picked me up at noon & we were off.

First stop was a brunch at First Watch....

Breakfast burriitos with mushrooms, spinach & eggs.
& a load up of "fuel" for the road from Starbucks.

& we were off.

Indianapolis always sounds like its so far, but its always a fast trip when you're in the car with girlfriends.  The conversation was non stop & before we knew it, even with traffic & construction on the way, it felt like no time & we were at our hotel.

We unpacked & got the baby all fed up & cleaned up with a new outfit & we were ready to head to the Stadium.  - Yeah, Chasity brought her new little man - he's not even 3 months old so he needed to be with momma - & really, why WOULDNT you bring a baby to an arena full of women?  It's more of a "fight 'em off" thing in this instance. Who doesnt want to hold & rock & love on a smiley, happy baby?

We made our way to downtown Indy & man, I forgot how big Indy feels - especially compared to Downtown Louisville - which looks like a matchbox car next to a semi.  Parking alone is a little bit of a crazy thing. After riding around blocks for awhile & seeing parking at $20.00 a pop, we found a MASSIVE mall that had parking cheaper - & it actually worked out great because one of the young ladies in our group, Jordan - her shoe had broken off the bottom somewhere from the walk to the car to the hotel room.  So we ran off to find her a new pair of shoes in the mall.

... I think someone could get lost in this mall man - It's HUUUUGGGEEEE!!!!! It would be fun to go back & do a girl's shopping weekend there. I think its like 3 stories tall. I could be imaging things - we were in some many 'wards' of the mall & so many turns & twists & escalators & came out of so many different streets through doors of it - CRAZY... but we got shoes - mission accomplished.

We finally got in the arena & we were actually the first ones in our group to make it there so we got a good area that was near the bathrooms & gave Chasity room to walk with the baby.

I had actually gone with my "heart church" - the one that we went to for so many years.  It was so super nice to see so many familiar faces & to meet so many new people that go to Greenville.

You can see we took 3 rows up with this group! How cool is that - 28 women I believe went.
The first speaker was Margaret Feinberg... who I actually have heard before & really enjoy her. She's so quirky & cute.  She apparently has a book out called Taste & See & I really am intrigued by it now because she took time with her husband & traveled & researched some of the foods  that were mentioned  in the Bible & found out more about them - how they're handled - what they do -& see how it ties in to how that food is used in Scripture.

She told us about the Olive (which was fascinating with Jesus time in the Garden of Gesthesame) & also talked about Salt (which was so cool to see a REAL salt block & to learn that the word SALVATION is also from the same Latin word that is used for Salt) - but the illustration that hit me the most was when she talked about grapes.

I am the vine. You are the branches. If you remain in me & I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me, you can do nothing.
-John 15:5

She talked how we usually focus on the "Attached" part of the vine - that's usually where everyone goes. But she talked about the way the vines are nutured, taken cared of, pruned, the long process it really takes for the best production of grapes... I can't even do it justice how she taught it....

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But the part that stood out to me - she talked about the soil of the grapes.  We think anything that grows from the ground needs to be lush & rich in soil. But the grape's & their vines? They need rocky soil.  They NEED rocks & stones to FORCE their vines to go deep. To get ROOTED.  It's the weight & roughness of the rocks that makes the vines stronger.  .... whew - that just hit me in the heart something crazy!!!

Such good stuff....

Click the book for the link if you're interested - just thought someone may be interested
We got a little bit of a break & then next up - MERCY ME!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Oh my gosh y'all. SO GOOD. I have always liked Mercy Me - but since I've seen their movie I Can Only Imagine, I just have more of a love of them. & seeing them in person?  EVEN BETTER. That voice .... it was just so effortless with so much power behind it.

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Plus, their song "Even if" - it has basically been my life theme song for the past year & a half. Not even joking. This song just is my heart song... STILL.... I have YET to get through this song without tears falling down my face. I mean, big ugly tears.  The day I can sing it & NOT cry, I may have to find a new heart song.

We ended up getting out of the stadium & then it took us about 15 minutes to FIND our car :) - at least it was beautiful night for downtown walking.

& then we all remembered we had not eaten dinner & was pretty hungry.  After a little bit of a GPS search, the only thing open around midnight was good ole Taco Bell.  I felt like a teenager out ordering in a Taco Bell drive thru this late.... plus, we were all giddy laughing at this point. 

We got back to the hotel & ate in our bed & I think everyone knocked out really fast.

Everyone but me... I just tossed & turned & had the worst night sleep of my life. MAYBE 2.5 hours.  If that... I just couldnt get comfortable. I was so hot, I kept feeling like Ernie was jumping on the bed which shook me up & I am just one of those people who try to sleep & instead, every problem & worry of the world decides then to go through my mind.  YAWN....

5:30 am came really early....

At least I got to start off my morning so wonderfully because Chasity, Jordan & Sha ran down to get some breakfast in the hotel & fix me a plate - BECAUSE WE MUST AVOID THE C WORD... & my sweet friends know this about me - so they brought me up something to eat - & I volunteered to keep the baby while they went down to load up plates.

if someone MUST sacrifice, I'll do it LOL

Saturday, we had more of our bearings to us & it wasn't so "Downtown" crazy at 7:30 AM so we got in & got a parking spot & was back at the arena bright & early.... ready for day 2.

We started off with Jeanie Allen who was just precious - I hadn't seen her before - & then it was time for Karen Kingsbury.  She's a popular author if you're not familiar.  Her talk was on "Making your life a Best Seller"...

& before I jump into her message - I have to rewind to the night before.

Chasity & I were sitting there at one of the breaks & we were just talking about how crazy life moves on.  She just came really feeling the presence of her mother in law, Stephanie - who was my best friend - who had passed away 12 years ago this past May.  Chasity was saying that she just really feels like Women of Faith makes her miss Steph even more & she has memories of me & Steph at all the events.

I told Chasity that I can specifically remember the Women of Faith that we went to about 14 years ago ... It was right after Stephanie had been diagnosed with liver cancer... & Patsy Clairmont was on stage & she was talking about finding joy & said, "Did you know that laughter is good for the liver?" ... in that moment, Stephanie grabbed me & hugged me & said, "That's why God made you my friend!! You always make me laugh - God knew I needed you".... we both laughed & cried together at that. It's a memory that is so VIVID in my mind - even now....

This is from that conference

It was so funny too because Chasity was sitting behind us - just a Senior in high school & Steph had even talked then about that young lady marrying her son one day.... isn't that funny? 

This is the picture I was telling Chasity about... that's her .. a baby
Here's Chasity on that weekend at dinner in the blue
& here we were all the years later - me sitting next to Steph's daughter in law - with Steph's grandson... it was just a heart felt conversation between us.

All that was the night before....

Now the two of us all these years later... after we had that discussion
& then Karen Kingsbury came up & was talking about her father - a beautiful story that is just so amaizng & incredible in itself - but he had passed away & she talked about all the ways that she felt his presense after he left this world.... & then in her message she was talking about, she got to talking about how we need to Laugh Often - & she said, "Did you know that laughter is good for the liver?"

WHAT?  WHAT???? ... as soon as she said it, me & Chasity just jerked our head so fast to one another & just was dumb founded.  WHAT???? Then we both just started crying.  Because we knew Steph was near us.  Just HAD to be.  Chasity said, "You know Stephanie is laughing right now at that" - to which I said, "& we totally know her liver is totally healed too"... & we both cried more. 


We finished up the conference with one of my favorite speakers / teachers of all time - Angela Thomas Parr... her & her southern accent just makes me laugh & teaches my soul.  She can bring the Scripture to life - the power of it... she really touched on how we need to dig those roots into the TRUTH of God's Word - nothing else maters. She sent us home with such an inspired & motivating message.

Image may contain: 1 person, on stage, standing, night, concert and indoor

... & then it was over. Just like that.

... but it's NOT really over... because we're walking out to the car to pack up & meet up with everyone for lunch & head home.

We get out to Chasity's car & pop the trunk to put things in the back & I look over & just had to laugh... truly... I said, 'Um, can someone come look at this?'....

Sha came over & just stared at it & was like, "WHATTTT????" & Chasity was putting the baby in the car & asked what was happening & Sha said, "You just have to come look"....

& right there... my dad's name.

Tom Wood.

We just came out of this feeling of having a touch of heaven from Steph... & then see this.  I could do nothing else but laugh.

Apparently there's a Tom Wood who is a car salesman in Indiana.... but HELLO - what are these odds that coming out of this message & feeling the emotions of the weekend, THIS is the car next to us?

Thank you God - I needed these little touches of knowing Heaven is near....

SO yeah, to say it was a good Women of Joy is an understatement.

Of course, the ride home was even more full of discussion about the weekend & it was like BLINK -

we were home.... back to life. Back to laundry & cleaning & dog feeding & horse poop sweeping ... but also back to dog hugs & hubby love & home sweet home.  It's always so good to get those breaks away to get that soul refreshed.  I really have come home with a new passion & craving to get my own roots planted deeper - to keep all the other things that dont matter & the things that distract me from my relationship with God - to only focus on the MAIN THING THAT MATTERS.

It was really nice to take that FIRE & go worship with my HSM gang on Sunday ...but after that, man, its hit me. I'm tired.
I had picked up some lunch for Ricky & I & then headed home to just relax a bit ... still got a lot to do around the house & go take care of the horses & just all the fun adult stuff that comes with life... but I'm still on that spirit high right now....

Hoping it lasts through the week.

Friday, August 16, 2019

Friday Favorites

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Favorite Tea Infuser

This is perfect for summer time tea!

Favorite Halloween Lights

Incandescent Spider Halloween Icicle Lights
 Target - you're cute with your Halloween stuff!

Favorite Kitchen Gadget

So SMART!!! Perfect for those sauces at the bottom of the jar!! 
Especially the thick ones that never come out easily & fast when you need it

Favorite Shirt

Merida Curly Hair T-Shirt

Favorite Bag

Cute for fall!
Comes in some great colors too!

Favorite Pen

OK - so I have been learning to use these calligraphy pens anyways 
but come on man - how MAGICAL!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Favorite Lunch Box

Yes - this is a lunch box!
Talk about doing lunch in style!!!!

Favorite Funnies

Morning Funny Meme Dump 35 Pics

Afternoon Funny Meme Dump 35 Pics

Morning Funny Meme Dump 39 Pics

Morning Funny Meme Dump 31 Pics

Morning Funny Meme Dump 31 Pics

Afternoon Funny Meme Dump 36 Pics

Morning Funny Meme Dump 32 Pics

... how my dogs treat me when its bedtime

GIPHY! ( August 14, 2019 at 08:39PM

... when I think that Christmas is not too far off

GIPHY! ( March 25, 2016 at 03:36PM

... me every day with iron deficiency

GIPHY! ( March 26, 2018 at 03:24PM

... when I get to remind everyone that I've been off all day & on my way to Women of Joy

GIPHY! ( March 8, 2018 at 02:51AM

Happy Weekend!

Thursday, August 15, 2019

Thankful Thursday #233

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This week I'm Thankful for:

Infusions encouragement
I'm telling you - I think my guardian angel's name is Christina. She just keeps my mailbox flooded with encouragement & words of hope.  & she always is so good at sending them just at the perfect time. So when I opened my mailbox & saw this card with a Starbucks treat in it after my awful round of not getting needles in on my last infusion - it was just a virtual hug like no other. 

Agility class #2
It's still a bundle of fun for both Ernie & Ricky.  He's picking things up so fast & seems to just be having the best time.  I cant wait to see how much more he learns.

Insurance Adjuster
Everyone around us seems to be getting their roof fixed from hail damage & our insurance agency has been fighting us tooth & nail to replace our roof.  They one time came back & said they would fix 68 shingles. EXCUSE ME? 68 shingles?  Are you kidding me?  The roofer even said, "How do you even do that? You'll cause even more damage taking a "few" off & how do you really know which 68 they're talking about?" ... but we FINALLLLY got an adjuster that was like, "I dont understand the hold up - lets get you a new roof" - THANK YOU!  We've been with our insurance company for over 20 years & NEVER had a claim.  & they wanted to fight us for this?  It was a mess.  But glad to see the light at the end of the tunnel.

After work nap
These infusions just kills me. I know they are supposed to pump me up with energy - but they make me feel horrible & exhausted. I'm having to come home after work & take a nap to even get through the night.  Glad Ricky just comes in & takes care of the dogs & lets me get a 15 minute snoozer.

Made up with "THE NURSE"
You can read about that on Monday's post... but I'm just glad that I dont have to cringe wondering if I'm going to get the nurse that hurt me so bad & called me names. We're on good terms now. Always good to clear the air.

Half Nashville gang
With all the infusions & health issues & busy schedules, its been hard to get all the Nashville gang together - but it was nice to see part of them this past weekend. I dont think I could have handled the hectic of all 3 boys up while I felt so badly - but having one sweet little one who just wanted to play board games & card games - totally up my alley. & it was wonderful just spending time alone with him.  The oldest always gets one on one time when he's little & its really easy to spend time with the 2nd one when they come along - but the 3rd? It's hard to give him attention with TWO older brothers... I just really loved getting to love on William & him getting to spend time with us alone.  ... & glad I finally think I got ONE of the boys to prefer me over Ricky.  Those boys love their Pappy - but I'll take William right now while he likes games & movies. LOL ... its probably for one weekend, but I'll take it.

What are you Thankful for this week?

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Wednesday, August 14, 2019

Three Things

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Love how genius that bloggy friend Steph is as she's always coming up with these each month...

Let's have some fun!!!

Three movies I've watched more than 20 times 
1. Beauty & the Beast
2. Grease 2
3. Moulin Rouge

Three things I don’t do
1. Have good skin care
2. Host things that involve cooking
3. Watch movies that involve dogs (they always die or get hurt - NOPE)

Three things I'm always up for doing
1. Coffee dates with friends
2. Hugs
3. Take time to read

Three good things that happened this month
1. Got to see part of our Nashville gang
2. Ernie starting Agility classes
3. Bruno & Zoe made it to 19 & 14 years old!

Three things I wish everyone knew so well it was ingrained in their bones
1. Going without meat isn't hard or impossible - you get used to it. & it makes a huge difference in the environment - AND your health & you really wont miss it.
2. Knitting really is simple - its really only 2 stitches mixed together in different ways to form different looks.
3.  All things Jesus - that its not "religion" to love Jesus - its relationship - & to not let people who fail be the representation of Jesus to you.  Get to know Jesus yourself - experience His love, grace & mercy.

Three things I'm tired of
1. Feeling bad
2. Iron Infusions
3. My incision areas STILL hurting over a year later

Three things I'll never tire of
1. Dog snuggles
2. All things books
3. Seeing others accept Jesus into their lives (Especially young teens)

Three things I like to photograph
1. My dogs
2. The beautiful country landscape
3. Candid shots of people in real life moments

Three things I can't resist 
1. All the Bachelor shows
2. Pens / markers / stationary - give me all the school supplies!!!
3. Starbucks

Tuesday, August 13, 2019

Show us your books {August 2019 edition}

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Book time... 
Time to break out the Goodreads & load up on new books to add to my "Want to Read" list
My favorite time of the month

Here's my current reads - a down & up & then back down again month.  
That's ok - cant win them all

Barefoot by Elin Hilderbrand
** / 2 Stars / It was OK

Quick Summary - three women go to Nantucket for the summer, each trying to escape something in their life.

I think this was a typical Hilderbrand story. I usually love her books. I did love that this one was once again told in spurts, from various points of view.  I just never really got into the story though. Some of the characters aggravated me & I got to the point where I didnt even care what happened to some of them.  One of the women, I really did care about & her story, the other two? Meh.

& to be fair, I'm in an awful reading slump so this could very well be a great book but I'm just not in the mood for it.

I'd be anxious to hear of any other Hilderbrand fans who has read it & if I'm off base & need to try & re-read it again down the road....

“When you peered into the windows of someone else's life, you could only guess what was going on.” 


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The Siren by Kiera Cass
**** / Really Liked it

Quick Summary:  Kahlen, a Siren, girls who sing to draw others to their death in the ocean, ends up falling in love with a human.

I really needed a fluff read to just sit back & relax & enjoy - not giving much thought.  This was what I needed.

It's totally mystical & magical - a world where the Ocean talks to her Sirens & needs to feed of the death of humans in order to sustain the world with water... but I was totally down for it.  I loved the Siren sisters & loved the magic of it all.  Could be classified as corny in some areas, but I thought it was just a fun, light read... I mean, taking away from all the people that die! LOL ... you feel for Kahlen & her struggle & I just really enjoyed this mindless fun.

"It was a fact that too many people ignored:  
Children's books held truths."


We are Okay 
By Nina LaCour

Quick Summary: A young girl leaves everything behind after her grandfather passed away, whom she lived with when her mother died when she was young.  She is now at college & her best friend finds her & they discuss the truth of why she left.

I had heard about this on Currently Reading & they really spoke well of it.  I got it & tried to get into it. I was about 25% in & was just not clicking with it.  Didnt hold my attnetion & I wasn't getting any attachment to the characters.

It's funny - I'm finding most books that win awards like this one did - its won quite a few awards actually - I really have a struggle reading them. I guess I'm just that into "depth" kind of books.

So I just let it go & moving on....

"What I mean is don't be a person who seeks out grief. There is enough of that in life.” 

( I think for me - that quote from the book is exactly why I stopped reading it - I'm still in a spot where sadness & grief - it hits me at the wrong time & I just cant read it...)


When All is Said
By Anne Griffin
*** / 3 Stars

Quick Summary:  A man sits in the bar & toasts a drink to the five people that sums up his life journey.

This is like a mix of A Man Called Ova, The Five People You Meet in Heaven & Big Fish.  My friend Leslie said that exact thing too & its sport on.

I had a really hard time getting into it at first.  That first chapter was torture. I only stuck with it because we were reading it for a Reading group.  But I'm glad I stuck with it.

It's in an "Irish" tone so some of the words, language, the way things are written out,  I struggled a little bit.  But the story was beautiful really. How it weaved in all these people together that Maurice toasts too ... & to see his life through his eyes in his old age.

In the end, this was heartbreaking too - the last chapter, I actually cried.  It tore me up.  Showed me I enjoyed it - but equally disturbed me.

It's a good book to show how one little action can affect so many other through years.  The ripple effect of decisions.

"No one, no one really knows loss until it’s someone you love. The deep-down kind of love that holds on to your bones and digs itself right in under your fingernails, as hard to budge as the years of compacted earth. And when it’s gone … it’s as if it’s been ripped from you."

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Life According to Steph