Everything Southern & So Cotton Pickin Cute

Sunday, January 31, 2010

Miracle Mondays ~ My Father Reminds Me There Are Miracles Everyday

Hi Friends. Well it turned cold here again today. Cold by Florida's definition which is a little different then most of ya'll probably. Our high was 48 but it was so cloudy, overcast and windy that it felt a lot cooler. I know what your thinking.....Sissy. Yeah, probably.

Unlike me it was just right for the birds. They were all over the place. Nadine (my MIL) just loves to sit at the table and enjoy watching the birds and boy they didn't disappoint today. They really put on quite a show!

Now remember I have this old camera so my pictures are sorely lacking but you get the jest of it. Now don't get me wrong it was a beautiful sight to behold but it was also kind of weird. We've never seen the birds gather like this. Unfortunately none of the pictures of them taking flight came out worth showing. But incredible amounts of birds would all come in and light at the same time, and then suddenly up and away they would take flight again, over and over. At first I was saying they're just having so much fun together but then Neil and I both thought something was scaring them. After awhile it started to resemble the movie "The Birds by Alfred Hitchcock". It really started looking like some kind of apocalypse movie. Maybe it was the gray day, maybe it was the depression I've been fighting, but right then and there I decided it was time for an attitude adjustment.

So there you have it. No miraculous miracle. I just decide to appreciate it for the gift of God that it was. It reminded me of one of my favorite bible verses Matthew 6:25-26

25: "So my counsel is: Don't worry about things-food, drink, and clothes. For you already have life and a body-and they are far more important than what to eat and wear.

26: : "Look at the birds! They don't worry about what it eat-they don't need to sow or reap or store up food-for your heavenly Father feeds them. And you are far more valuable to him than they are.

Well wasn't that an in your face reminder to be grateful and stop obsessing! Lord, are you talking to me? Is this one of your exquisite reminders. Thank you Lord, for always being so tender to me. Always loving me even when I doubt.

Now what was that I said about no miraculous miracle - Oh' how foolish I was to say that. I believe I was wrong, that was quite some MIRACULOUS MIRACLE.

I had no idea what I was going to post for tomorrows MIRACLE MONDAY. I have hoped all week something would pop up in my head or I would think of the right place to go to find something good to write about in the news. I thought I'd just share these pictures with you tonight but as I sat here and typed I realized GOD had provided me with my MIRACLE MONDAY!

Thanks for stopping by. If you have a blessing or just something you're grateful for please leave a comment and share it with us. If your having something you're struggling with I'd love to offer a prayer for you.

Have a blessed week ya'll. Warm hugs and love.......Tracy :)

Even the squirrels came out today.

How do you like my little friend. This was actually taken last spring. This little mama was out forging for nourishment so that she could go back and feed her babies who were still nursing. So on this day we fixed her a bowl of fruit and donuts.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Lots of Pictures - But Warning - It's Not All Pretty

***Warning to New visitors*** Please beware this is not my ideal post for a first meeting. I hope you'll stick around and visit again. They're not always so dark.

Mercy, Mercy Me. I've got pictures today but it's not going to be easy. You've got to work, I mean read for them. And they are not all going to be pretty. So you're getting the good and bad.

Anyone else getting Spring Fever. I've been bite. But there's a problem. A couple of big problems. Number one is HUGE.......I've LOST it. You know ~ IT. I used to have it in spades. Ya'll still don't know what I'm talking about do you. I have lost my UMPH! My get up and go, my energy, my mojo. Yep, it's gone.

But hey I did replace it with something! Un hun, I sure did. I replaced it with an extra 15 pounds ~ fifteen pounds of ugly, energy draining fat. You didn't really expect me to say something good did you. Remember this is all about my problems. Today is TRACY'S SELFISH DAY. I know I should be ashamed to be admitting all this, be ashamed for not putting on a happy face. The one that says I'm faking it until I make it or at least till I believe it and feel better. Hanging my head in utter shame. Well, the shame's there but don't expect me to hang my head. There is not enough energy for that. And just why is that? FAT, BIG UGLY ENERGY ZAPPING FAT.

Now lets take a deeper look. Hum, why did I give away my energy for fat. I have several reasons for that.

It all started with depression. Neil lost his brother several years ago and has never really recovered. After awhile I became overtired, worn out, even angry, and of course depressed. Nothing new, I've battled that for years. But this time I gave up. Do you know what happens when you give up in a HOT, HUMID (I'm talking dripping wet humid) state? Well you might as well give it up till winter and start training for the heat again so your ready for summer.

I lived in the yard. I was out there from early morn till dark nearly every day. I not only mowed, planted and took care of our yard, I also went over to my MIL's and did the same. Not a small yard at either house. I landscaped hers as well. Don't get me wrong before William died Neil was out there helping me dig and plant. He's always done the weed eating and things like that. I had muscles you wouldn't believe. I could pick up things some men couldn't. I'd been knocking interior walls out of our house and wheel barreling tons out for several years. I could work all day long. Which was quite a switch for the petite little makeup on all the time me.

Well now the energy has been gone for several years. I do think the extra pounds aren't helping. Plus I've always pretty much lived on sugar. Which didn't hurt when I was working around here all the time. But you can't actually eat a ton of chocolate and coke and any other carbs and sweets within a 20 mile radius while sitting at the computer all day. My skin's showing sugar effects too. Sugar causes it to sag and look shallow and in general unhealthy, not so pretty. There are so many more bad points I could bring up. I'll let ya'll anticipate with baited breath me telling ya'll more about that another day. LOL. So here I sit sluggish, tired, just wanting to do nothing more than sleep. And now you can see the vicious circle I'm running in. Yep, pretty much feel like a dog chasing his tail, not smart enough to stop.

No Exercise = No Energy!!!!
Lots of Sugar and Carbs = No Energy!!!
No Energy = Depression. UUUUUUGGGGGGHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!

Oh let's add to that pre-menopause. Oh yeah, it's coming, it's started.

Let's add to that the economy. An unfinished house and nope, I'll just save something for later. I don't want ya'll to run for the hills.

So what to do? Well I know attitude is everything, well maybe not everything but a huge part of change. Attitude is hard to change. But I have changed my attitude somewhat already this year. I spend a lot more time in prayer and search of the Lord's will for my life. It has made a difference. Now I need to also work on making healthy choices so that I feel better. Feel healthier and happier. I'll be writing a little more about my search for happiness, health, aging, and CHANGE! I'm on a mission to find my silliness again, to jump out of the box. To punch 50 right in the smacker and keep rolling right over it. I'm going to be asking for your ideas, your opinions and your suggestions. Remember these words OUT OF THE BOX. Does anybody remember the little red paperclip? More on that later. I need you all. Help me and please be apart of my change. I'm looking for mentors. I'm looking for miracles!

Well this post really got off track. This was about my yard and gardening. I used to be so proud of my yard. Just a few or more short years ago. We completely transformed our yard. Planting hundreds, well over the years with annuals thousands actually of plants. I felt good about it. Working in the yard, the fresh air and sunshine does that for you, or me at least. I would have strangers stop and get out of there cars to talk about my yard and the view. Neighbors said it looked like the entrance to a country club.

I would plant huge masses of inpatients. The flower beds that surround the foundation of my house would have pansy's and snapdragons lined up behind the border grass the entire front and side, including the bed by the mailbox that encloses the yard. Pots overflowed on the porch, Mums in fall, poinsettias at Christmas even lining the steps with them and other plants in the spring & summer. Every tree on the riverside was surrounded with plants and mulch. I was very proud but also proud in a humble way. It did lift my self esteem to feel like I could create something so lovely.

Don't get me wrong. I was grateful to God then and am just as grateful for the problems I have now because there are so many with such bigger problems that mine are indeed trivial. Thank you Lord for everything you bless me with and for every lesson you teach me.

Now I'm overwhelmed. Everything needs doing again and I don't see how I can do it all myself. Neil has his own things he needs to work on, the yard is not a priority for him. There's no money for me to hire someone to come in and help me get the basics done or even for me to buy mulch once I do all the weeding. I know if I don't start soon I won't be able or acclimated to the heat and I'll miss a whole nother summer out there. I'm just overwhelmed. I painted the house a few years ago. It needs it again. We used to have a pressure washer. Someone decided they wanted it this year and took it right out of the back yard while we sleep. It had to have taken 2 guys to load it up, it's on wheels , it's a big commercial pressure washer. Two years ago someone decided to go in the shed and take my tiller and weed eater and a few other pieces of yard equipment. And we have always lived in a very safe crime free neighborhood.

Well ya'll have listened to me go blah, blah, blah long enough. Let's get to the pictures.

The picture below of the bougainvillea was taking only about 2 months ago. Isn't is gorgeous. The bee loves it!

This is that same bougainvillea after our record breaking freeze. And being on the water we never even have frost on the ground at my house but these are definitely tropical plants.

I can't remember what this plant below is called but had to have it when I saw it. It's just such a soft pretty pink.
The plant below is called Chenille plant for obvious reasons. It's so soft a fuzzy. It's more like a ground cover. It works well in hanging baskets too. It dies back and returns every spring. I got about 10 little pieces out of someones yard and it really took off. I love plant sharing.

This pretty purple plant is kinda like a weed. They just spring up in that same area. I grabbed a hand full of these from the same yard. I have no idea what they are called but they are so pretty. They don't really last a day as a cut flower though.

See these orange/yellow beauties. I think they are cosmos, not sure. I have no idea how to plant seeds and make them grown into plants. I know you are supposed to cut them so they fill out. Nope not me, I toss them in my wild bed and that's it. Well it looked like a giant weed. Pretty ugly all summer. Neil kept wanting to cut it down. In secret I wanted them gone too, but I told him no way. I suffered all summer looking at those weeds and I'd be danged if I would cut them now. Well they don't bloom until August or September. But they're so pretty once they do. They don't last long in a vase either but these suckers were 7 feet tall - they were a bright lovely mass when they did finally bloom.

The picture below is one of those when I was spending lots of time (and money on fertilizer) in the yard. On just the waterside Neil and I totally changed the topography of the land building it up and planting 14 pallets of grass (in Florida it comes in square sheets) by ourselves in about 3 long 12 hour days. But it was pretty. I'll explain the 911 terrorist scare later. The picture below is what the yard looks like now. Sad and sorry. Well it actually looks worse now. This photo was taken about 3 weeks ago before the record freeze we had. See the green plant inbetween the 2 bedroom windows? That's the beautiful bougainvillea before the freeze but after the blooms fell. I was working on getting it higher than the windows so it could drape over.
Well that stick looking thing called a plant by the far left column is also a bougainvillea that was beautiful but is totally brown from the frost. I hope I can cut these way back and have them make a comeback again. Our grass of course always turns brown in the winter but let me assure you all that beautiful green grass from those other pictures was not there last summer it was mostly the hated dollar weeds.
I do love our beautiful canopy's of oak trees dripping with moss. The dirt area behind the saga palm was filled with thick curving beds of inpatients in bold beautiful colors.

So now you've seen one of my true loves and also the bain of my existence. I love a beautiful yard. It just makes me feel good. I used to take pride in taking the worst and working my but off to make it better. I'm usually the one that says it'll be easy & we'll make it look beautiful. But this is the first time I can remember thinking I just can't do it. I'm overwhelmed, I can't see the tree for the forest this time (instead of the forest for the trees). Can everyone come help me for the weekend including the curb appeal show? Of course that's after I finish with a healthy, beauty makeover reality show first.

I wish I had taken pictures of everything when it was prettier.

Lots of love for listening to all the whining girls (and any guys) who may be reading.

Hugs....Tracy :0

BTW - if you have any bulbs, plants or seeds you'd like to trade or share (I'll pay postage) I would love to hear from you. I love, love, love zinnia's and dahlia's they really take our heat but I'm a fan of iris' and everything in between. Anybody need any ferns, cast iron plants or African Iris'. I've got lots of those - LOL.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Jewelry Giveaway Alert - Hurry One and All

Good Morning Ya'll.

It maybe 10am here but that's early for me. I live with night owls and are schedules are wacked. Anyway more to the point, I have another fun giveaway for ya'll.

You've all heard me talk about my sweet, sweet friend Traci over at Beneath My Heart. Well she is hosting a giveaway for a $40.00 gift certificate from one of her sponsors that I know you'll want to check out yourself. So stop by and let her know I sent you. Amanda creates beautiful stamped jewelry designs. Maybe you'll win one of Queen Bee's Designs by Amanda if I'm not the lucky one. The giveaway will end at midnight on Thursday the 28th. Just click on Traci's name above or here to visit her blog and enter.

Be sure to check out my older post too because there are lots of giveaways going on.

Hugs Sweet Chicks......Tracy :)

Monday, January 25, 2010

Do you like pink? Oh' you know you do - Pink Giveaway for you

Hi Ya'll.

Have you heard about the new giveaway that Rebecca's having over at A Gathering Place? To all my shabby chic loving friends, listen up.......

She is giving away, drum roll please......One of her famous hand painted pink rose frames. She is one very talented artist. She has been featured in Romantic Homes several times as well as Bedrooms and Bath. When I think of Rebecca, I think soft and gentle, pink and sweet.

If you haven't entered her giveaway click here, you'll surely want to. She is celebrating her one year blogiversary and almost 300 post. Good luck but remember even if you don't win the prize you win a new friend.

Warm Hugs and Smiles....Tracy :)

Miracle Mondays - Have you been blessed?

Hello Dear Friends.

It's another Miracle Monday.

Often I like to take my bible and flip to a page, praying that the Lord will give me a message that I need to hear. It seems to give me comfort when nothing else will. It makes me feel like God is giving a visible message to me. This time I specifically prayed for a positive message, hoping that this is what all my Monday posts will consist of.

This is what I received and would like to pass on to you.

Psalms 107:1-2 ~ 1. Say "THANK YOU" to the Lord for being so good, for always being so loving and kind. 2. Has the Lord redeemed you? Then speak out! Tell others he has saved you from your enemies.

Psalms 107:13-15 ~ 13. Then they cried to the Lord in their troubles, and he rescued them! 14. He led them from the darkness and shadow of death and snapped their chains. 15. Oh, that these men would praise the Lord for his loving kindness and for all of his wonderful deeds!

We will never know the reason the people of Haiti have had to face the horrific tragedy that they did last week but our faith in our Father should never falter. We are human and we sometimes can't help but question why but isn't that where faith takes over? Isn't that when we know we have to trust him? We teach our children to question everything, we tend to question everything. There's nothing wrong with that. It would be unwise not to. That is, unwise not to question everything. However, there is a place in our lives for blind faith. The blind faith only a Christian can know. Most of us, (I say most because, I believe some have) have never seen Christ with our own eyes. We've heard his voice whisper in our ears, maybe it's a thought heavy in our hearts and on our mind, maybe it's something in the beauty of nature that is awe-inspiring. I'm sure there is something that you have experienced that you knew was a message from God. Maybe you just felt God's love. Isn't that blind trust?

The people of Haiti are a strong nation of believers, even as a countless number of their people die around them you still hear voices of praise. This week we've seen our fellow Americans come to the aid of the Haitian people. Even in the depths of our own depressing economy, people have found a way to give. No matter how large or small, I am certain the people of Haiti see it as a miracle, a miracle of God. I know I do.

I believe that Haiti's devastation has provided Americans and other countries around the world with a new message of love. The message, that each person can make a difference to another person. Each person has something they can offer to someone else no matter how poor or how insignificant they think their own life is. Suddenly we realize that we are much richer than we thought we were. We are blessed more than we deserve.

So here is a Miracle that I'd like to share with you.

The economy has not been good to us the past year but we have been much luckier than most. Well the trickling down effect has finally reached us full blown. We have been retired for a while now. This has not been a lavish retirement. Really no extras at all. But God has a plan and though we didn't know it, we would be required to take care of Neil's mother and this has allowed us to do that. Fortunately we have rental property that has been our income. In one office we had a mortgage broker. Well as you can imagine the economy hit them hard and they had to move. Then the next two tenants had to leave as well, so we're down to one. This week we got what we had expected, (maybe that's part of the problem, we shouldn't have expected it), the last tenant said he is leaving at the end of the month to work out of his home. So here we are with 4 empty offices and mortgages just like everyone else.

Because of this I felt that I couldn't give to a charity at this time. I couldn't help out the people of Haiti. This bothered me so much. It really was weighing on my mind. Well Friday night we watched Hope for Haiti, where the celebrities came together in the most moving way. It was touching and the music was so moving. I don't normally watch music award type shows.

Well one person (remember, sometimes it only takes one person to change a life), called in and said if only everyone could give $5.00. That's when I realized I had $9.00 (pathetic, hun?) left in my paypal account. They accepted paypal and I gave $5.00. Please don't misunderstand, I'm not boasting about this. You'll see this is a part of my miracle.

Ebay has been very slow the last year or so because of the economy. Everything and everyone is hurting somewhat. I haven't been selling much at all. Days go by with no sales. When I woke the next morning I went to check my email. Now I never wake up this early, 7:30 am, we are night owls, boring, stay at home night owls, but night owls non-the-less. Well one woman (remember one person can make a difference), had went to my store and purchased 3 items and had questions about more. She ended up purchasing 5 items for a total of $51.00. I keep feeling like you will think I'm boasting, look at the good thing I did. Even the Lord says to give or pray without boasting, but that's not what I'm trying to do. I'm trying to share his miracle in my life, his goodness to me with you. I was in utter amazement as I knew this was straight from God. By the next day I had sold 3 I had been given a return of 10 fold on my small gift. more items. The point that I'm trying to make is that my head told me I didn't have it to give but my heart had the message of the Lord telling me to have faith and step out without fear.

It doesn't matter what you give. It could be clothing; no matter how bad we think it may look it could provide covering for someone who has none. It could be food, for surely they are lacking. It could be your time of collecting donations, helping a charity sort items, load a truck, etc. Each person has an opportunity to help. And prayer for these people is a mighty thing and everyone can do that. See if your heart doesn't feel better. It sure took my mind off my troubles and depression at least for awhile.

I hope all of you start the week with the promise of hope. I pray that blessings fill your home. Please take a moment and share your blessing or miracles with us. If all you do is shout out I'm here, that is a blessing to me!

With much love and thanks..........Tracy :)

Monday, January 18, 2010

Welcome to the very first MIRACLE MONDAYS

Welcome to the very first post in a new series called
MIRACLE MONDAYS. First I’d like to thank you for stopping by.
I’ve had this idea on my mind for years. Way before I knew anything about blogging. I love to hear of others miracles. Big miracles, little miracles, it doesn’t really matter and why should it? Aren’t all miracles huge? I believe there are miracles happening every day, all over the world. It’s funny, we have every kind of news media there is, the newspaper, television news -the local news, the national news and stations dedicated to nothing but news, we even have satellite radio with just news shows. We hear every sensational news story there is. Oh sometimes they throw in a feel good piece here and there but it’s very limited. And I for one refuse to believe that there aren’t miracles waiting to be told. Maybe people don’t talk about them because they don’t want to come across as fanatical or crazy. Maybe the news doesn’t share them because they can’t be substantiated. Well I would rather look on the bright side. I’d prefer to think that most people who are interested in miracles and our Lord want to share their blessing with others and not just someone wanting to write fiction. So I’m appealing to you my friends. Do you have a miracle to share? Do you know someone who shared a miracle with you that you would like to pass along? Big miracles are wonderful but isn’t it the little everyday miracles that keep us going, that remind us of God’s goodness, his ever presence. Those of you that follow Debra’s blog ~ a day in the life, have already heard me share this miracle so please bare with me. Since this is the first in the series I thought I would share my biggest miracle with you. It’s one of those in your face miracles. One of those that is irrefutable to me. The one that God said “Never doubt my love for you, I’m always listening”. I believe it was about 15 years ago Ty (my son and only child) and I were living in an apartment community. I used to work in the office but wasn’t any longer employed by them. I was hanging wall paper as a contractor for them at this point. My own hours, it was perfect for me at the time. Neil and I were on a break. I started spending a lot of time studying the word and spending time in prayer with the Lord. The more I spent time seeking him, the more I enjoyed reading the bible. The more sense it started to make. I seemed to be absorbing it, instead of just reading the words and trying to hurry through. For those of you who don’t know me, let me tell you I have always been late. Late everywhere. It’s not that I don’t respect other peoples time, this has just always been a big issue for me. Just like my dad who my mother said would be late for his own funeral. The reason I’m telling you this is to give you an idea of how much I was sincerely seeking the Lord. Whenever I would wake up late or be running late for church, I would speak out loud that nothing was going to stop me from getting up and going on to church. I basically would rebuke the devil. I was feeling good and very content at this point. Oh’ a little background. I have battled depression for a long time. Similar to bi-polar, kind of an up and down thing. Well working my own hours was perfect at this time. I was trying to find peace with myself being without Neil. Every other day or three, I drove out to the beach in the mornings and stayed for 2 to 3 hours. Got a great tan that year, ha-ha. I took my bible and would spend most of that time in prayer. For me the beach or water in general has always brought me peace and relaxation. One day I said to the Lord “Father, I know this sounds crazy, I don’t have the money and don’t see me ever being able to afford a home on the water but Lord it brings me such peace, it calms my high strung nerves so much. Please father I pray that someday, somehow I might be able to live on the water so I can enjoy the beauty and peace of it, I have no earthy idea how but this I ask”. Now, even as I’m saying this I’m thinking to myself this is crazy, you don’t ask and have things drop in your lap. But somehow this didn’t feel wrong. I even remember believing that all things are possible in his name and speaking that. This wasn’t asked for in the text of I’d like a pretty house, new clothes, a fancy car. This was truly about seeking relief and peace. I'd better get on with this story. Is everyone still with me? Within 2 weeks of asking this (maybe even less) I got a call from an apartment community needing an assistant manger. I was hired. That same week I called another very nice apartment community about doing wall paper for them on the side. A few days later I went to meet the maintenance Manager (really big apt comm.) He told me he'd be happy to hire me to do their wallpaper but asked would I be interested in applying for assistance manager there. The apt complex just got bought and they were hiring all new staff. The next day I met the manager and she and I hit it off immediately. She said the job was mine if I wanted it. She then asked would I like to live on sight because she had her own place and wouldn’t be living on the property. Of course I said yes. Free rent!!!! That was a miracle right there. But don’t think that was it, oh no! The manager had a leasing agent show me around. She told me about what the manager might offer me to move into. I was told no one that worked there had ever had a river view apt. These were the most expensive. Well God had something else in mind. This manager offered me the only river view apartment available. 2 bedroom, 2 bath, 1600 square feet with a fabulous view! Can you believe that? Then she said take a look at the carpet samples and we’ll put in what ever color you choose. A day later she told me that they would re-tile both of my baths including the master walk in shower. And she had all my appliances refinished. Oh’ my Lord you can’t imagine how my head was swimming. I wanted to shout to everyone what the Lord had done. He hadn’t just given me a better life, he had actually heard me and exceeded my dreams. Here I was with a new job, a better salary, a bonus on all leases that any agent made, a HUGE new apartment on the RIVER, free cable t.v. I was already so blessed. Well that wasn’t the end of it. Neil and I did get back together. While we were separated he rented out the house he was living in and moved to a condo at the beach. So of course when we got back together, here I was on the water again. The beach can you believe it. What I didn’t see possible God did. The beach condo was just a year stay, while waiting for the renters to leave a house he had bought years ago and had been renting out. This house was on the river. A 1920’s cottage that he had done some remodeling to and then moved to a new house which was where I first knew him from. We moved back to the cottage. We call it the Campbell House (Campbell Ave). We have totally knocked out tons of walls, built on, bricked the exterior, new roof, new kitchen and on and on. Unfortunately we are still working on it, and probably will be for the rest of our lives – ha-ha. But my point is ~ that prayer to my father was over 15 years ago. Within three weeks of that prayer I was living on the water and have moved 3 times and each time was to a place one the water. I have never been off the water since. I know in my heart that was an astounding miracle! I was blessed to have seen the grace of God. He knew my heart and answered my prayer. I was an emotional wreck when I made that prayer and feeling so lost. The Lord did this to show me that he had never left me and was always listening to me. I had been suffering so much after the deaths of my parents. I had felt orphaned, he showed me I was not. Please if you have a miracle or someone else miracle that you could share please do. I love the small miracles as much as the big ones. Maybe you’ve had a friend show up at the perfect time, maybe God’s answered your prayer or perhaps you’ve just felt the grace of God. In this time of so much turmoil and financial hardships your story could give hope to someone else. Let’s pass on some good news. We can never have to much of that. Next week I hope to link up with McLinkey so you can share your stories. And my sweet friend Sarah from Gypsy Mermaid Life has offered to create a button for me. I hope that you’ll check back and maybe put the button on your side bar to share the news. Thanks to everyone for reading my long post. May God bless each of you this week in all you do. Love…..Tracy :)

Friday, January 15, 2010

Look At What, I Mean Who I've Found Now

Hi. I want to share with ya’ll my new find. My new find by the way, is a person. It seems the Lord has already answered one of my prayers this year many times over. And here is the why and how.

Those who follow me know I have only been blogging since July 2009. And do you remember me saying how just a few months back before I started blogging I keep wondering what the big hoopla was about? I just couldn’t grasp it. I mean what’s the point. I’m not a world traveler or a movie star so why would people want to post about there lives and certainly why would anyone care about mine? Then I came across a couple of sights and okay, I hear you giggling, and you know what happens next.

One suddenly introduces me to another and then to another and omg, I can’t cut the computer off. I can’t go to bed.

Here is a little replay:

Me: What? Ya’ll want me to fix dinner, or you kidding I can barely keep my eyes open, my arms ache and my neck aches and there’s still more to see.

I know ~ keep going. I will get to the original point of this post soon.

Well I finally drag myself away from the computer, oh my it was hard, and suddenly I look around…..what in the world happened here?!!! When did my house get like this? Why are ya’ll sitting at the table with your forks in your hands? LOL!!!

I know I can’t possibly be the only one this ever happened too. Un-huh, that’s just what I thought. You know exactly what I’m talking about. Oh boy, I was hooked ~ hook, line and sinker.

Anyway back to my answered prayer. Ya’ll were wondering when I'd get back on track, weren’t you? When I started blogging I was feeling really alone and I wasn’t spending time with the Lord. I had pulled away, depressed thinking, he’s just got to be sick of me. Feeling like I couldn’t ask him for anything because I wasn’t doing anything on my own to change the way my life was. I was thinking how can I ask for anything when there are people out there with real problems. I can’t be that selfish.

Keep going, quit yawning and stop that giggling! I’m getting there.

Well for those of you who know the Lord, your probably going “silly girl”. As it got closer to Christmas I got lonelier. It’s my favorite time of the year. There was lots of crying a few weeks before but all was better by Christmas. No, nothing changed at my house but inside everything changed. Christ took me in his arms and comforted me. He took away the pain I was feeling from being the only one at my house who cared about the holiday. No tree this year and no Christmas. No Christmas ~ only in the meaning that we didn’t celebrate with with the festivities, and we usually put up 2 trees indoors and lots outside. I mean I have the attic full, plus the little house shed is at least half full and the laundry room at the other house is almost full of my Christmas. Heck, I used to go decorate MIL's house too. I don’t know if next year will be any better, I can’t change other people but I can still celebrate the true meaning of Christmas. Don’t get me wrong, I still long for the joyous celebration and for people to enjoy it with, which includes the decorating, planning, hope and expectations and things like that. Maybe you can even pray that joy will once again be apart of my home.
How I do go on and on without ever getting to the point.

I am amazed, I mean amazed at how God has a plan way before we can even imagine it. I mean, I started blogging, still struggling, feeling so hurt and so lonely, praying, wondering if he was listening. Oh, but was he ever listening. I had no idea he already had a plan in the works. He has brought so many unbelievably kind people into my universe. These people, ya’ll, have touch me and moved me to tears ~ the good kind! Ya’ll have helped me feel loved again and worthy of Gods time. Because of you I have found my way back to the grace of God. I could go on and on.

Once again…..Let’s get to the POINT already.

I’d like to introduce you to one very sweet soul. Her name is KYMBERLY from Free Trinkets and Treasures. Actually she has several blogs. And yes, her kindness to me did influence my opinion ~ Ha-ha. If you have never been by to visit her, I urge you to now. She is so warm and kind. She loves anything and everything VINTAGE, just like the rest of us. She loves crafting and you’ll love her. Just take a look at the beautiful images and sweet words she posted about me and the upcoming Miracle Mondays I have planned. What a generous soul. She didn't know me from Adam (or Eve), but she made me feel as special as can be. Thank you, Kymberly. Click here to go to Kymberly’s blog and be sure to tell her I said hi.
I hope you all have a beautiful weekend. Just be sure to come back and share it with me.

Warm Hugs......Tracy :)

Thursday, January 14, 2010

The Great Debate Giveaway

Here's an opportunity to vote and help all of mankind or if that doesn't do it for you there is a chance that you could win a Cottonelle Gift Basket!

You've all heard that age old question ~ Do you prefer the toilet paper roll..... OVER or UNDER? Well to me the answer has always been easy and a no brainier......OVER, duh. Well I guess all of you must not agree with me or they wouldn't be asking the question.

In the oldin' days when they didn't know better, they had colored rolls and rolls with patterns on them. Well if you had the tolit paper over you could see the print, obviously. And btw isn't it just easier to get some if it's over, especially in the dark. LOL! It drives me crazy if it's on backwards by which I mean under.

I am entering to win a month of Cottonelle toilet tissue over at Mom Bloggers Club! Get place by the way ~ I'm a member.

And if you leave a comment here on this post you could win 1 of 10 Cottonelle gift baskets(http://www.cottonellerollpoll.com ) randomly chosen on January 29, 2010 from all entries.

Good Luck. Hugs.....Tracy :)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I've Been Asking and Now I'm Listening

Hi Ya’ll. I know I haven’t been posting a lot lately but I have been checking in on everyone and enjoying all your post and pictures. So many of you have new blog pages and headers too. They’re all so pretty. I see I’m not the only one that’s excited about the New Year and the changes it promises to bring.

Isn’t it exciting knowing that there’s a fresh start? Even if it’s only in our mind. I mean really we can start over any time. We don’t need a calendar to do that. That is the glory of God. He’s not like the insurance company saying you can start a new program only once or twice a year and you can’t use all your benefits up. Isn’t that a wonderful thought ~ You Can’t Use All Your Benefits Up ~ EVER!!!!

The Lord doesn’t look at us and say I’ve worked with you for 12, or 16 or however many years and say schools over, either. He doesn’t tell us, teaching is done and times up, here’s your test, either pass or fail, we’re done. No, he would never tell us that. We are all still children to our heavenly father. As we yearn to learn, he yearns to fulfill us. He can’t wait to reward us with his love and kindness. It’s just as we as parents hate taking our children’s toys because we have to teach them a lesson. We want them to enjoy all that we can give them. Have you ever had something that you were so excited to give your children because you know it was going to be something that they’d really wanted, only to have to hold on to it because they had done something that wasn’t in following with their parents wishes. Isn’t that just the worst. I think we’re usually more disappointed than they are. I believe this is how our Heavenly Father feels about us. He takes great joy in giving to us and meeting our needs. All he ask in return is that we acknowledge who our Father is and aim to live by his word and be pleasing to him. Like any other parent, he asks us to listen. Pretty simple, hun? Just listen. Listen for his word. Pray for his guidance. No problem is too little nor is it too big.

I don’t know how others feel and I always enjoy others opinions and thoughts but I’ve been timid in telling the Lord everything, and asking for all I need. I am trying to overcome the thought that the Lord doesn’t have time to be troubled with me. I ‘m always thinking…..Tracy, he’s tired of you looking to him for everything, if you can’t take on some responsibility and get it done on your own, he doesn’t want to hear it. Well, that’s just not true! Thank goodness!!! Jesus is so different from that. He is not just one of our friends, or family or acquaintances that’s excited to help at first and then grows weary. He’s patient, kind and loving and never tiring.

I never intended this blog to be all about religion. I do want it to be about me, just the same as I visit your blogs to know more about you. Right now, I’m on a new journey to walk closer to the Lord. I’m searching to learn more about myself as well. I think this year will prove to be very positive. I hope to share more crafting, up-cycling and other fun stuff with you. More about my hitting my 50 year milestone, what that means and where that will lead.

I have lots of questions for all of you and could use all your support and suggestions.

Hopefully this is my first step into posting more often. I wanted to start out today with a new regular weekly post called “Miracle Mondays”. I’ve thought about this for years, way before blogging. I’m interested in having you share your miracles with me here. I know there must be something special, a moment or even a feeling that you’ve experienced that you would like to share with others. Kind of like Chicken Soup for the Soul. So next week I hope to have my first official post on Miracle Mondays and I hope you will all come by and hopefully contribute something or support those who do. I’m super excited about this. Please stay with me on this journey and lets see what we have to discover.

Just so you know all of my followers have already been a part of this journey, whether you knew it or not. You’re love and outpouring has been overwhelming. You’ve all been such a huge part in me dealing with the ups and downs of depression.

Thank you all from the bottom of my heart. I hope to see you next Monday if not before.

Warm hugs and Warm blessings to each of you….Tracy :)

Friday, January 1, 2010

A New Decade Begins - Who Will You Serve

Happy New Year Dear Friends!

I don't know about ya'll but I'm looking forward to this new decade that we just dropped into. The reason I say dropped into is because (in this crazy head of mine) I picture a clock, think Big Ben and that huge hand just ticking over at 12 AM. I feel sort of like that little mouse just barely hanging on. Thank the Lord, I hung on until midnight, I hung on to get just past and fell straight down, slap-dab into 2010, a brand new decade. I'm scurrying to my feet, brushing myself off, okay I might need some water to clean up that cheek, grinning ear to ear as I yell I made it!

The last half of the 2000 decade wasn't so great. Lot's of stuff going on. Ya'll have all seen it. The economy - well it's crap. We lost a few loved ones. We've become full time care givers for my Mother-In-Law. Our life seems full of doctors appointments, repeating ourselves and trying to keep a smile on our face as we've heard for the 6 time during breakfast about the old homestead. In the evening our conversations usually go like this.

Us: Mom, why don't you come in the living room and watch TV?
Mom: I've got a TV in my room. I need to go to bed. (It's about 6:30 pm)
Neil: You just got up a few hours ago. Lets go watch Wheel of Fortune.

As we're watching Wheel of Fortune......

Mom: Oh' look. I use to work with him. Lots of giggling.

Commercial comes on. It's Jay Leno again....

Mom: Oh' there's Jay Leno. I went to school with him. He made us laugh all the time. (Keep in mind, she was born in 1920).

By now we're laughing with her.

That's one of the lighter moments. I only wish we could forget half the things she has. No stress, no worrying about money, never in a rush. I wish we could have less stress in our lives so that we would have more patience with her. She's changed so much in the last decade. She was always immaculate, always looked so much younger and sprier and seemed to be loving and kind, on the go more than we were. Now it seems she's very unhappy. Nothing we do makes her happy. She went from loving me like a daughter to not being able to stand me. It's been very painful.

That's where the new year, new decade comes in. I feel a little spark of joy coming back. A glint of hope. I owe a lot of it to you dear friends in blogland. You've given me something to look forward to. A new set of eyes so to speak. A young view again. Feelings of creativity, hope, and joy. You can't imagine how my heart soars to see a new comment from you. I don't feel so all alone. I owe so much of it to Debra and her bible study A Day In The Life. I found myself craving the word of our Lord. This year I choose to serve him. He has waited patiently for me to ready myself and say you take control. I certainly am not doing a good job by myself. Our Father doesn't want to see me just hanging on, tired and weak. He wants to bless me beyond anything I could ever imagine. (And believe me, I'm a huge dreamer). I know our Father is going to save me this year, comfort me, love me and give me a desire to live again. I'm so tired and now I feel I can fall in his arms and find rest. I feel like I can see the river Jordon where he's waiting to quench my thirst and refresh me. I look forward to serving a loving, giving Master.

I want to issue a special shout out to a few people.

Dear Lovely Keke from Cherry Kingdom, thank you for being here from the beginning. You've been such a dear friend.

Sweet Dawn from The Feathered Nest, you make my heart sing, I can't get over the pureness of your creations, they just speak Gods love to me. You've been such a blessing with your loving kindness.

Generous Sweet Elizabeth from Creative Breathing, your fabulous stories send me straight to dream land. When you write it's like watching a movie to me. I can picture everything so clearly. And you're creations bring back the child in me and the joy of a time I never lived in but always felt like I should have.

Loving, Caring Connie from Living Beautifully who never fails to make me feel cared for, always commenting, always supporting. I doubt she knows just how much her time and kind words have meant to me.

Cheery fun loving Sarah from Gypsy Mermaid Life who took me in for my first swap and offered he help when I hadn't even started my blog. What a blessing she is.

Kind Sweet Traci from Beneath My Heart, a young woman who has a love for the Lord and a full time schedule and handles it all with such grace. She's been through so much herself these past few months but she never fails to me feel special.

And finally Dear Precious Debra from A Day In The Life & Common Ground who has open her heart to me and comforted me like no other. She has a heart for the Lord and shares it with everyone. She gives me the love only a Mother could and makes me feel safe and loved even though she is certainly to young to be my Mother. (I keep forgetting, I'm not 26 anymore).

All these sweet friends seem to give me so much more than I ever give them. I feel like all I do is take from them hopefully I too will be strong enough and have enough energy to give back a tenth as much as I take.

I've met so many new friends and I'm looking so forward to spending this new year sharing joys and sorrows, laughing and crying, and in general becoming closer friends with all of you. Thank you my loves!

Well I know this has been a long post so I'll go now. Thanks for letting me share with all of you. Thank you for your kind and loving comments. They mean so much more than I can say. 2010 is ushering in the year of my 50th birthday. Stayed turned girls....that part is going to be a bumpy ride. LOL!

Wishing you all the very best in the New Year. With warm hugs...Tracy :)