Thursday, December 31, 2009


Moving from one year to another....what comes to mind?

First thing I thought of was how much difference a year makes. Last New Years Eve was one of the best ever. Dinner out at an amazing German restaurant, tickets to a play Jerry and I had been talking about seeing for not just years, but decades, and finally bringing in the New Year in the Grand Foyer of the Kennedy Center. We listened to music and we danced the old year away. This year I am spending my first New Years Eve in almost 40 years without someone to kiss at and wish a Happy New Year to at midnight. How did I end up here? Am I really so stupid that I didn't see it coming or is it just true that "Love is blind?"

Secondly, I wonder how long into the new year I will have to go before I feel I am on solid ground once again? Or is there even such a thing as solid ground? This is the year I will turn 60. It seems everyone around me, even those years younger are thinking retirement and finding time to do things they have been looking forward to but couldn't do because of time commitments that come with working. But instead of looking toward retirement I seem to be suddenly working harder than ever and with seemingly no end in sight. Dreams I looked forward to making come true now seem farther away then ever. How did I get here? Will there be new reachable dreams? Or is it true that "Life is to short?"

There are only 30 minutes left in 2009.....what will 2010 bring? I don't have a clue. I guess that is one thing that remains constant. None of us have been granted a crystal ball. As 2009 ended while we were at the Kennedy Center I had no idea the challenges that 2009 would bring. I had no idea the joys it would bring. Nor did I have any idea the heartaches it would bring. Going into 2010 I can only take each day at a time. Asking that God grant me the grace to deal with what ever comes my way be it challenges, joys or heartaches. I do wish though that he had physical arms to reach down and hold me with. Ones I could actually feel. I now realize more than ever how important human touch is. Never again will I take it for granted.


Tuesday, December 29, 2009


Two more days to go and it is good bye to 2009! There have been wonderful things in 2009. A wonderful dream trip to Alaska among one of the highlights and then a fun trip through MI and to MN. But there also have been some not so good and downright painful times including a serious return of my RA, being laid off from a job I held for 11 years, and most recently adjusting to living on my own for the first time in my life. I continue to work on focusing on the many blessing in my life. Sometimes this is easier than others. I am working to be honest with myself in terms of my feelings and honestly despite the good the year brought I am ready to put 2009 behind me and move on into 2010. I pray that it is a good year. At a minimum I hope it is a calmer and more stable year.

I have other friends around the country as well as near to home here in MD who are also facing difficult times. I share this prayer for a better 2010 and one that is calmer and more stable sor them as well. At times it seems that our world is turning upside down and even inside out. Despite all that, we must remember that God is in control and that his love and grace is there every day for each one of us. Maybe that is a more important prayer that we remember that one thought throughout 2010!

Thursday, December 24, 2009


Though this year is a new kind of Christmas for me one thing remains constant. The reason I celebrate Christmas is a joyaous celebration and remembrance of God's sending to year his beloved son. A son that was born to a human mother and father in a humble stable among the animals. A son that was to show us the nature of God and give his life so that we might be reconciled with his father, our God. This is the best gift we could ever hope to receive. So despite what disarray my personal life might be in I am truly blessed this Christmas season and every day of my life! A very VERY Merry Chirstmas to all.

Saturday, December 19, 2009


Well this is what thing looked like outside my front window before the sun went down and darkness settled in. Yes it is beautiful, yes it is peaceful, but also it set up the day to be a very lonely one. I did get a lot of things done including laundry, sewing of Christmas gifts and finally a batch of Christmas cookies baked. That is good, but also so sad as there is no one to share it all with. Tomorrow will also be a day home alone....not only that but a day of figuring out what the heck to do with 21 inches of snow and how to do it.

God is good as the saying goes and all the time he is good, but can he handle a snow shovel?

Friday, December 18, 2009


On top of everything else do we really need to have a major snowstorm????????? How long will it be before I talk again...not counting talking to myself!!!!! IS 2009 over yet! I am so ready for 2010 it has to be a better can't get much worse...she says with fingers, toes, and eyes crossed!

Thursday, December 17, 2009


Just a little thought from one of my favorite women's inspirational writers, Barbara Johnson.
" If things are tough, remember that every flower that ever bloomed had to go through a whole lot of dirt to get there."

Tuesday, December 15, 2009


Boy was it ever a difficult and emotional night.
Every Tuesday night we have a dinner at our church followed by an Adult education class. Tonight we watched a movie on the life of Dietrich Bonhoeffer. IT covered his life from the time he left the US at the beginning of the Nazi reign in Germany through his arrest and execution by hanging. I had to be one of the most intense movies I have seen in quite some time. At first I thought maybe it was just me because my emotions are pretty raw and close to the surface right now, but then I realized everyone watching it was reacting pretty much the same way. When the movie was over Phil turned off the TV we were viewing it on and after a minute or two just looked at us all and said something like....."well, I've had quite a few years experience dealing with this movie...and yes it does hit hard....does anyone want to say anything..." there seemed to be a lot of ummmming and ahhhhing, but no one seemed to have any clue how to put any words together. Finally Phil just announced that we would meet next week for dinner and a "much lighter and less intense program" and someone finally responded with "how about Rudolph the Red Nosed Reindeer" and that seemed to break the tension and we were able to talk a bit about the movie and the grief we all felt concerning mankind's inhumanity towards their fellowmen thorough out history and up to today.

So much to think and talk out concerning how we choose to live out our faith on a daily basis. Still an awful lot of emotion swirling around in my mind looking for an outlet.......

Saturday, December 12, 2009


Dt 31:6 "Be strong and bold, have no fear or dread of them, because it is the Lord your God who goes with you; he will not fail you or forsake you." This was part of Moses message to the Israelites before his death and as they were facing moving into the promised land without him to guide them. Moses reminded them that though things weren't going as they had thought things would or as they might have planned it would be OK. God would be with them. He would guide them and see that they were cared for.
Jos 1:5 "No one shall be able to stand against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will not fail you or forsake you." Here God is speaking directly to Joshua after Moses death. Joshua is facing moving into the promised land. A new place, the place promised over 40 years earlier to the Israelites as they were leaving Egypt. The journey they took to get from one place to the other was not an easy one. It was not what they had expected as they set out with Moses. But through out that journey God never once left their side even though they wandered from him multiple times and complained even more.
Heb 13:5-6 "Keep your lives free from the love of money, and be content with what you have; for he has said, 'I will never leave you or forsake you.' So we can say with confidence, 'The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can anyone do to me?'" From a sermon at the end of the book of Hebrews. According to my study Bible this part of the sermon deals with practical instructions to the community of faith. There was also a note which led me to....
Psalm 118:6 "With the Lord on my side I do not fear. What can mortals do to me?"

All the above is good news and good advice for a new day!

Friday, December 11, 2009


Sorry there tonight are no words for what I am feeling! Hopefully tomorrow will be a new day and I will be back under control and feeling the presence of God by my side...but for tonight....I am totally and utterly alone!

Thursday, December 10, 2009


Oh my gosh it's now only two weeks to Christmas much to much to prepare. I know that Advent is a time to prepare for the coming birth of the Christ child and I have been working on that, but it is also the time to prepare for Christmas celebrations with family and friends. It will be a different kind of Christmas this year on that front, but as for the birth if Jesus, that blessedly will remain the same. I thank God that he is a stable constant in my life.

However I will also provide a bit of constancy by baking some cookies, making and wrapping some presents all to share. I do have some work to do!

Tuesday, December 08, 2009


Oh if only we could follow this advice from Paul:

Put away from you all bitterness and wrath and anger and wrangling and slander, together with all malice, and be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forginving one another, as God in Christ has forgiven you.
Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children, and live in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us, a fragrant offering and sacrifice to God.
-Ephesians 4:31-5:2

I'm sure if we could the world would be a much better place! A world which lived according to this advice; this would be the best Christmas gift I could imagine.

Monday, December 07, 2009


Philippians 4:4-7
Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.
4:5 Let your gentleness be known to everyone. The Lord is near.
4:6 Do not worry about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.
4:7 And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

This is one of the lectionary verses for the week. It is a good one to keep in mind. I think each verse carries a key word.

From verse four REJOICE! It is always good to rejoice. Especially to rejoice in the Lord as we are told to do hear. No matter what my state of mind or emotion if I "rejoice in the Lord" I find I will soon have a heart of thanksgiving for all God has blessed me with; a mind full of wonderment at all he has done; and a smile on my lips.

From verse five GENTLENESS! Our spirit should be one of gentleness toward others and towards ourselves. In today's world of expected perfection and demanded immediate results it is often easier to be hard and judgmental. To be demanding of self and others. But we are called to be gentle.

From verse six we actually have a phrase DO NOT WORRY! When has worry solved anything? Worry is a time and an energy waster. I don't think that means do not be concerned, but when concerned we are to take those things to God. We are told to take our concerns to God. He will provide an answer and the first answer will be DO NOT WORRY...I'm here, I'm with you we can handle this concern together.

And finally in verse seven PEACE! This is the greatest of the words here and it comes out of taking heed of the first three. If we REJOICE, are GENTLE and DO NOT WORRY we are told God will grant us a PEACE that passes all understanding. A PEACE that only he can give and wants to grant to each and every one of us.

Saturday, December 05, 2009


There's lots of snow out side today....more than there should have been. Everything looks beautiful and clean in the lamplight. It all looks so fresh. But there's no joy or happiness in looking at its beauty right now. Only sadness and the reminder of a very long winter that lies ahead. Which reminds me of the rather sad and I think mournful Christmas song;

In The Bleak Midwinter

In the bleak midwinter, frosty wind made moan,
Earth stood hard as iron, water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow, snow on snow,
In the bleak midwinter, long ago.

Our God, Heaven cannot hold Him, nor earth sustain;
Heaven and earth shall flee away when He comes to reign.
In the bleak midwinter a stable place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty, Jesus Christ.

Angels and archangels may have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim thronged the air;
But His mother only, in her maiden bliss,
Worshipped the beloved with a kiss.

What can I give Him, poor as I am?
If I were a shepherd, I would bring a lamb;
If I were a Wise Man, I would do my part;
Yet what I can I give Him: give my heart.

It just has such a sad tune though it is a beautifully haunting melody....

Thursday, December 03, 2009


Today's Bible verse from my morning devotion is Philippians 1:9. Another God-incident? Maybe maybe not, but in any case this is a verse that will be my prayer for today.

"This is my prayer, that your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help you know what is best."

I went to my Bible to find out the context this verse was in. This is from a letter of Paul to the church in Philippi. Paul was writing from prison. In the introduction to the book in my New Oxford Annotated Bible translation is says that the Philippians were also experiencing some sort of opposition. and that Paul's major concern is to bring them back together. Verse 9 states Paul's prayer for the people of the church at Philippi. The above is not exact in what the NRSV says and actually rolls over into a bit if verse 10. Here is the totality of verses 9 through 11.

" And this is my prayer, that your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help you to determine what is the best, so that in the day of Christ you may be pure and blameless having produced the harvest of righteousness that comes through Jesus Christ for the glory and praise of God." Philippians 1:9-11 NRSV

When Paul refers to the day of Christ he is referring to Christ's return to the earth in the second coming. He, Paul, and many in the early church believed Christ's second coming would be within their life time. Today we know this did not happen. It has been over 2000 years since Christ walked this earth and it may be another 2000 years or more before he returns. Or he may return tomorrow. But when ever the time of his return we as Christians need to be prepared and waiting. Living, in the meantime, the life which God has planned and prepared for us. Sometimes in our humanness we do not do a very good job of following God's plan, but God is good and he continues to work with us. He is a God of "second" chances. Actually I would say and third and fourth and so on. When we come to him and say "I know I messed up in following your plan, but I ask that you give me the faith and the wisdom to know how to hear and follow you", his grace pours out and this verse and Paul's prayer for the people will be answered.

Sometimes things are so easy that we distrust them and make them harder than they need to be. So my prayer for today is Paul's prayer. That your love may overflow more and more with knowledge and full insight to help me to determine what is the best. The love is God's to me and it is the love that will direct and guide me.

Wednesday, December 02, 2009


"We all have a choice in every difficult situation in life. We can become either bitter or better."
~~Corina Zalance

This is so true. I choose with God's help to become better. Which do you choose?


Not being a Catholic I do not spend a great deal of time thinking about the Saints of the faith. Methodism, my denominational faith tradition, believes we are all saints. I believe the term is the "sainthood of all believers". But I do enjoy learning about the lives of the early saints of the church and what they offered to the early believers. When I say early I am referring to the pre-reformation period. Saint Ignatius is one of those saints that intrigues me.

The other day I refer ed to my morning devotional reflection that comes to me from The Upper Room. Other than a wonderful short devotional thought it comes with other things to ponder. One of these things is a weekly focus on some spiritual discipline. This weeks is "The Examen". I guess because of where I am in my life journey at this moment this spiritual discipline practice intrigues me and seems to be something that I would do well to practice.

Ignatius presented this practice in a little book he wrote called Spiritual Exercises. Some day I may attempt to read this little book but I do have to admit reading texts from the early 1500's is not all that appealing or easy. I think it easier to read some late 20th century writers explanation of it. Back to the practice of is a daily examination of our deepest feelings and desires. He believed it was these where what connects us with God, others and our selves. He also believed we must examine our desolations (he called the first our consolations). Our desolation's he said were those daily things which disconnect us from God, others and ourselves. It was Ignatius belief that God would speak to us through both our consolations and our desolations, but that we needed to acknowledge each for him to be able to do so.

Here is what the Upper Room has to say about practicing the examen:

"The examen helps us:
• Acknowledge sad or painful feelings and hear how God is speaking to us through them.
• Overcome a pessimistic outlook by encouraging us notice the good in each day.
• Tell the truth about who we truly are and what we need, rather than who we think we should be.
• Become aware of seemingly insignificant moments that ultimately can give direction for our lives.

Preparation: You may wish to light a candle. Do whatever helps you to experience God's loving presence with you. Take a few deep breaths. Breathe in God's love, and when you breathe out, fill the space around you with it."

I have been working on remembering each day to look for the things I am grateful for in my daily life. I have not remembered to do it daily but for much of 2009 I have challenged myself to each night find 10 things from the day that I am thankful for. Some days are easy some days are harder, but I have found no matter how my day has been if I search long and hard enough I will find at least 10 blessings that were in my day for me.

What I have never thought to do was also look for and admit to the sad and painful things of each day. Sometimes especially these days they seem far to obvious. But it occurs to me in learning about the Examen that in a purposeful acknowledgment of these "desolations" the power that they hold to separate me from God, others and self is diminished. And that in offering these things to God he can not only comfort but work with me using these things to strengthen and better me.

Monday, November 30, 2009


It was very interesting today as I was driving home from a wonderful weekend visit with son, Jeremy. I do not like I-95, lots of crazies on that highway and too many trucks, so I prefer to go the PA Turnpike. It is a wonderfully relaxing drive and through some beautiful country side. Coming back today I was noticing something I have never seen before on that drive. All along the route, especially from Harrisburg to the exit before King of Prussia which is where I got off, I noticed cars and pick up trucks parked off on the side of the turnpike. They were all over the place. I could not figure out why there were so many abandoned vehicles along the turnpike. Then as I approached another small group of cars I got my answer.......hunters! It must be hunting season along that stretch of turnpike and the land along there is undeveloped. I was seeing cars of people out in the woods along there hunting, I assume deer. I nave never seen this before. Not sure if it's because I've never driven along there during hunting season before or if because of the state of the economy more people are hunting to put food on the table........

Friday, November 27, 2009


A few days ago I began reading a book by Lloyd Ogilvie called Asking God Your Hardest Questions. It is a book that has been on my shelf for at least 10 years, never read. But I've had some hard questions through out 2009 and so when I was looking for some inspirational reading it seemed to pop off the shelf into my hands.

The chapter I read tonight is titled; How Can I Know God's Perfect Will? It was an amazingly thought provoking read. Here are a few excerpts from it that I need to keep in mind and mull over.
  • "The perfect will of God is that we fulfill the purpose for which we were created: to know /god, receive his love, and enjoy fellowship with him forever....God's perfect will for our lives is that we love him, love ourselves, love others as he has loved us...." p.53
  • "God's perfect will is what he intended: his permissive will is what he allows." p.54
  • "God is always ready to go back to ground zero with us and begin again." p.55
  • " the lowest ebb of history he {God} came to earth in Jesus Christ, the Mediator....The mediator's persistant ant prayer was, 'Not my will, but Thine be done.'" p.55
  • "Is it possible to be a Christian and be out of the will of God? Yes. We can accept Christ's salvation and still run our own lives. Once again the Lord;s permissive will must be involved. He must work out to bring good out of our wrong choices. We are thankful that he does, but it's not the best he intended." p58
  • "We can trust what God intends, believe that he will use whatever happens, and know that his ultimate will cannot be dissuaded," p. 62
There are many other wonderful thoughts in this chapter as there were in the preceding 3 chapters. I have 16 chapters more to go and can't help but muse over what wonderful things I will uncover in them.

I don't remember when or where I picked up this book, like I said it was at least 10 years ago, but there is a reason I did and that reason was so I had it on the bookshelf to read now!

Thursday, November 26, 2009


Today is Thanksgiving in the US. Traditionally a day when friends and family gather together to share in fellowship and a meal together. Even when traditions may change and there is not a large gathering of family or friends there is much to give thanks for. We should never loose sight of the many blessings in our lives. I hope that this Thanksgiving was a wonderful day for each and every one of my family and friends. As the saying goes......"God is good, all the time! All the time God is good!!!"

Wednesday, November 25, 2009


This will be my prayer for today: All I have is from God. He is the author and the Lord of my life. He loves me and will care for me. I just need to put myself in his wonderfully tender hands. The days and nights may be rough but he is with me always. This he promised. I claim this promise as my own and His love and grace will be enough.

Every morning in my inbox I have a short devotional thought from The Upper Room. Usually it is a quote from one of the books which they publish. Today's quote was from a book written by Norman Shawchuck and Rueben P. Job. The book's title is A Guide to Prayer for All Who Seek God.

The quote was "Take Lord, and receive all my liberty, my memory, my understanding and my entire will; all that I have and call my own. You have given it all to me Lord, I return it. Everything is yours to do with; as you will. Give me only your love and grace. It is enough for me." This will be my thought and prayer for the day.

To receive these wonderful morning devotional tidbits you may go to The Upper Room and simply sign up.

Saturday, November 21, 2009



  1. Begin by sitting in your chair back straight, relaxed and looking forward. Place your hands over your stomach and breathe through your stomach so that your hands will rise and fall with your breath.

  2. Imagine, that with each breath you are breathing in white light, that fills your whole body and mind with vital energy. As you breathe out, visualize all your stress coming out with your breath.

  3. Now, as you breathe in slowly tighten the muscles that connect your shoulders and neck. Those muscles where we keep all of our tension.

  4. As you continue to breathe in and tense you muscles, rotate your shoulders with tension, up as though you were going to touch your ears with your shoulders.

  5. When you have breathed in all you can and your shoulders are snug around your ears, hold it for just a second.

  6. Now, release the tension and your breath in a big whoosh at the same time as though you were releasing the weight of the world off your shoulders, visualizing ALL your tension rushing out with your breath.

  7. Repeat this exercise until you feel clear, refreshed and revitalized!
This is from a web site I found that has some wonderful information on dealing with Emotional Stress. Compassion Fatigue. I am going to check out more of what this site has to offer.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009


So is 2009 over yet???? I am so ready to move on into 2010. It has to be better than this year.
More deaths
More illnesses..........
Bring on 2010!

In all fairness there has been a few good things like Alaska trip. It will have to be savored in all it's fullness and beauty. I'm thinking it will be a very long time before we get on another cruise or major trip of any kind.

I'm sure glad that people rarely visit and read this BLOG. I don't have to worry about being bummed out or negative on it when that's exactly how I'm feeling. <sigh> Tomorrow will be another day.

Wednesday, September 09, 2009


BLOGing is definitely an interesting pastime. I have learned that people do it for many different reasons and in many different styles. In fact I do it for different reasons on my two different BLOGs. This one is more of a personal journal. At times thoughtful, at times silly at times totally random. A few people stop by and share my thoughts, but for the most part it is mine and mine alone. A place I can come to and write down my thoughts. A place where I can come back to and easily find my past thoughts. That is what I have done tonight. I wanted to see what I had written concerning my current bout with RA. WOW!!!! I don't remember having written so much about it.

This wasn't a random occurrence. Tomorrow morning I begin a new phase of treatment: Remicade. There's not a lot of time tonight to go into it right now. I need to get to bed soon so I am rested in the morning and better able to cope with being hooked up to an IV bag and infusion pump for at least 2 hours and maybe more. I say cope because I don't know exactly what to expect, but I do know I don't do needles very well unless they are ones I'm using to sew with! This one will be stuck somewhere in my arm.

I need to have something that I can do tomorrow. Something to keep me occupied. I'll probably take a book, but I may also try to take my computer. Not sure if I'll be able to use it, but it sure would help me quickly pass the time.

I should at least take the time to say that though I can now move pretty much pain free in all areas accept my right hand there evidently is still a great deal of inflammation that the Dr wants to knock down and keep down. Thus the need as she sees it to call in the big guns. I loose a day of my life to the Methatrexate. I will loose at least a day once every 8 weeks to the Remicade assuming there are no side affects for me with it. At this point I choose to assume that! We'll see after tomorrow!

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Sometimes life just gets too dang tough! It's one of those times.

Thursday, May 07, 2009


1. Give God permission to be your caregiver:

This first point is one that flies in the face of everything society today says we should be striving towards. Self-sufficiency is the name of the game in the 21st century. The world tells us if we can't take care of ourselves that we have failed. We raise our children to become self-sufficient. We are a we can do it, we can handle it people. So given the world we live in how do we give up this becoming self-sufficiency is success life style and allow God to be our caretaker? More importantly how do I do this? What does it even mean to "Give God permission to be my caretaker"?

God as my caregiver is a very apt point for me to be thinking about at this time while I deal with a new normal life living with Rheumatoid Arthritis. A chronic disease that has no cure. Though it is highly unlikely the disease itself would be fatal, side effects of it in the long term could. I'm not sure anyone has ever had "Cause of Death" on their death certificate listed as Rheumatoid Arthritis, but I just learned when diagnosed again last month that chances for heart disease are heightened when you have RA. Also in advanced RA the medications used to control it are pretty nasty with some potentially fatal side effects. Having God as my caretaker sounds pretty good under these circumstances. Yet it still is not easy to give up that well learned self control.

How does allowing God to be my caretaker work with the "God helps them who help them self" motto that is so well ingrained in my mind? (Before anyone is tempted to chastise me I do know that phase is not in the bible but came from Poor Richard's Almanac!) I never have been and probably never will be (without a major change in my heart and mind) b een a person who has believed that you can give it all over to God and then sit back and watch him deal with your problems and issues.

I think this was reinforced in college when I had a roommate who was involved with a church that had a lot of college students involved with it and the scheduled a large church wide evangelistic even during the week before final exams. When they asked my roommate to be heavily involved in it and she responded that she had exams to study for their response was that since the program was doing Gods work she needed to be doing it and if she prayed for God to take care of her exams she could work with the church program in God would take care of the rest. Being a new Christian and trusting her church this is what she did (against my "heathen" advice to spend at least some time studying). Unfortunatley I had a new roommate the next semester as her parents refused to let her return to school after failing all of her classes but 1.

So when we allow God to be our caregiver.....what is our responsibility in the deal? Do we have responsibilities in the deal or is thinking that we do just a sign of not having enough trust in God to total give up control of our life to him???? I don't have any answers to these question yet.

The though just occurred to me that I think of God and myself as team mates in my life. I want him to be the captain of the team, but I am an active participant on the team. There are times when due to injury or other life events I might be temporarily benched or red-shirted, but I am still a team member and I will get back into the game at some point. The bible verse Hope gave with this point is from Matthew and I think it speaks to those times we may be red-shirted (temporarily on the bench due to injury).

Matthew 11:28

"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest."

The verse continues on in verses 29-30:

"Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me; for I and gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy and my burden is light."

If putting a yoke on is involved there must be some work on our part required. Oxen wear yokes when they are at work. Their work is directed presumably by the one whose yoke they are wearing. There is some work we will be involved in; some burden....If it is God's yoke we have on it is he who is the one leading or directing the work. We are told God's burdens for us are light.

So where am I now? If I allow God, give God permission, to be my caregiver I am not giving up all action in my life. I may be giving up control, but I do have a responsibility to seek out God and what it is that he has for me to do. There will be action required from me. God does have work for me to one of the next questions is what is it that he has for me to do?


There is a wonderful web site started by a stamping friend and a sister in Christ called Women to Women Sharing Jesus. On it Diane have wonderful posts about her life, faith, and love of Jesus. And she often has guest post by other women. This morning when I was thinking about what I should do for my devotional time (which I confess has been sadly lacking) I thought of this site and decided to see if there was something there that would jump start me. There was!

There was a wonderful posting by Hope with many things to ponder. And they were all things I need to be pondering. Here are her points and some related verses. For here thoughts you will have to visit Women to Women. I am going to ponder on these points one each day for the next 4 days and if I come up with anything profound or maybe even anything at all I Will share my thoughts here in further posts.

1. Give God permission to be your caregiver.

Matthew 11:28

Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.

2. Pour out to Him, so He can pour into you

Psalm 34: 6, 18

This poor man cried, and the LORD heard him
And saved him out of all his troubles.

The LORD is near to the brokenhearted
And saves those who are crushed in spirit.

3. Accept and surrender to God’s Truth

Hebrews 4:16

Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.

4. Remember the Truth

Psalm 40: 1-3

I waited patiently for the LORD;
And He inclined to me and heard my cry.
He brought me up out of the pit of destruction, out of the miry clay,
And He set my feet upon a rock making my footsteps firm.
He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God;
Many will see and fear
And will trust in the LORD.

Monday, April 27, 2009


What does my future look like? Now I know that no one really knows what there future holds. I know there are no guarantees in life. As a christian I understand that God has not promised me a life that is problem free; only that he will be with me through all problems I may face. BUT.....I still can't help but be focused right now on what my future might look like, and hope and pray that it is better then my present.

I don't really recognize myself right now. I am totally frustrated with myself and what I can and can not do. Fingers don't bend, toes don't bend and knees are virtually worthless.......pain is my constant companion no matter how hard I try to ignore it.

Life was great while on the Prednisone blast pack. I felt like me, but that is now gone and once again I am this swollen mess! I need to figure out how to have a major attitude adjustment. If this is my new "normal" life I need to accept it and figure out how to live with in it's limitations. But how????? I feel so old at only 59! Oh to think that a month ago I was making fun of my being's not so funny now.

I think my biggest fear is that I have always been so what concerned that by putting off some things I've really wanted to do that I would never get to enjoy doing them because of life circumstances....and this seems to becoming a fulfilled prophesy. IF I do have to give up those things I know it won't be easy...and what will take their place? I certainly can't give up living at 59. There must be some purpose in my life to move me forward into the future.

Of course in the midst of all these thoughts there is guilt lurking as I know there are so many people that have so many more problems than me and are much worse off. I still have many blessings in my life. I need to remember these blessings and each day focus on them, not the pain.

So with that in mind....I hope my next post here will be more blessing and thanksgiving based. There is so much good I need to reflect on.

Saturday, April 25, 2009


Today I took my first dose of poison. As I talk to people I am totally amazed how much of our medicine today is actually poison....At least I am not taking a rat poison like some of my friends are.........hopefully, at least this will get me my life back....or so the Dr says it will....though I am still confused as to how a med with side effects of nausea, headaches, dizziness, and lethargy and fatigue will get me my life back??????? I pray I am one of the people that side effects don't exist for.

Methotrexate=nasty stuff!!!!!!

Well on a happier note it will be off to the quilt show for day two in another hour.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Arthritis Foundation

A good place to go for good information.....I will be searching this site frequently in the net few weeks........Arthritis Foundation......I used it a lot 20 years ago, but then forgot about it.

Thursday, April 23, 2009


So I 've been thinking....that I will be taking a poison as medicine what will I do? Hopefully I will begin to feel better. There are no guarantees in life and that includes experiencing the bad and serious side effects from the methotrextate. So I am going to do my best to anticipate the best and ignore the worst. It this is the "gold standard" for RA treatment today then it's benefits MUST outweigh it's side effects. I will deal with the meds as issues present.

This is a disease for which there is no cure. At best I can hope for another remission. So I learn to live with it. To embrace it as part of my new "normal". With proper care I will avoid serious side issues such as heart disease and osteoporosis. Those are the things especial heart disease that could eventually kill me. So what do I do.........? Well one thing is I MUST figure out how and get the will to exercise. Cardio for the heart and strength for the bones. I also need to listen better to my body and give it the rest it needs when it needs it. I'm already working on eating better. And once I start the methotrextrate I need to be real careful about infections. I guess what it does is really kills off my immune system.

On a bright note if nausea is a side effect I experience maybe that will help me with my losing weight. I still have about 10 pounds I would like to get rid of. Then maybe my treat to myself can be a new wardrobe; updated to the 21st century.......

This may sound like not a big deal to some but one of the things that will be a challenge to me will be changing my drinking more alcohol while on these drugs....too much liver risk. Also Dr wants me to get down to one caffeinated beverage a day!!!! Yikes! I can give up my regular coffee, but my tea will be difficult. Also though I am not a big soda drinker when I do I most enjoy pepsi or coke.....what will I drink????? Water is so tasteless and boring......sigh....yes there are changes coming.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009


It has been a along time.......I am back here looking at "Life Out My Window". I am looking and reflecting....there are some major life changes that will be going on in my life and hopefully by looking out my window I can make some sense of them.

Shortly after my third child was born, 23 years ago, I was diagnosed with Rheumatoid Arthritis. It was pretty bad at the time and I was on large doses of Ibuprofen and Plaquinel. It was a rough time for me, a relatively young mother of three dealing with the thought of having a non curable disease that could result in disfigurement and chronic pain. Eventually I got use to the idea and miraculously over time my RA went into remission and I didn't really have any pain; just a few knuckles that were a bit larger than they probably should have been.

Over time I pretty much forgot about the fact that I had this disease (remember it is not curable) and I went on living life as normal people do. I was even able to stop all medications....for about 20 years I was symptom free. Well no has come back with a vengeance and I now am faced with needing to make a few major life adjustments. I have no doubt that I will be able to make the necessary adjustments....I just need to figure out what they all are and how to work and live with them. The first is accepting that the medication I have been given to deal with this is a poison....the concept of using a poison to be a help is not an easy one I am finding....that is what I am dealing with today!

Saturday, February 28, 2009


Maybe tomorrow night into Monday!
Given how this winter has been I'll believe it when I see it.
Cynical aren't I??? Yes when it comes to snow in MD these days.

Saturday, January 31, 2009


I got this list from a BLOGing friend of mine Teresa. I'm amazed at how many of the things I've already done. I guess a lot of things go on in your life over 59 years. Most of what I want to do yet revolves around travel.

Things you’ve already done: bold
Things you want to do: italicize
Things you haven’t done and don’t want to - leave in plain font

1. started your own blog
2. slept under the stars only in a tent or for a nap
3. played in a band
4. visited Hawaii
5. watched a meteor shower
6. given more than you can afford to charity
7. been to Disneyworld
8. climbed a mountain
9. held a praying mantis
10. sang a solo
11. bungee jumped
12. visited Paris
13. watched a lightning storm at sea
14. taught yourself an art from scratch
15. adopted a child
16. had food poisoning
17. walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. grown your own vegetables
19. seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. slept on an overnight train
21. had a pillow fight
22. hitch hiked
23. taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. built a snow fort
25. held a lamb
26. gone skinny dipping only in an extremely private area!!!!
27. run a marathon
28. ridden a gondola in Venice
29. seen a total eclipse
30. watched a sunrise or sunset
31. hit a home run
32. been on a cruise
33. seen Niagara Falls in person
34. visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. seen an Amish community
36. taught yourself a new language
37. had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. seen the leaning tower of Pisa in person
39. gone rock climbing
40. seen Michelangelo’s David in person
41. sung karaoke
42. seen Old Faithful (geyser) erupt
43. bought a stranger a meal in a restaurant
44. visited Africa
45. walked on a beach by moonlight
46. been transported in an ambulance
47. had your portrait painted
48. gone deep sea fishing
49. seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. been to the top of the Eiffel tower in Paris
51. gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. kissed in the rain
53. played in the mud
54. gone to a drive-in theater
55. been in a movie a homemade one
56. visited the Great Wall of China
57. started a business
58. taken a martial arts class
59. visited Russia
60. served at a soup kitchen
61. sold Girl Scout cookies
62. gone whale watching
63. gotten flowers for no reason
64. donated blood
65. gone sky diving
66. visited a Nazi concentration camp
67. bounced a check
68. flown in a helicopter
69. saved a favorite childhood toy
70. visited the Lincoln memorial
71. eaten caviar
72. pieced a quilt
73. stood in Times Square
74. toured the Everglades
75. been fired from a job
76. seen the changing of the guard in London
77. broken a bone
78. been on a speeding motorcycle and I didn't like it!!!!
79. seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. published a book
81. visited the Vatican
82. bought a brand new car
83. walked in Jerusalem if peace ever comes to the area
84. had your picture in the newspaper
85. read the entire bible
86. visited the White House
87. killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. had chickenpox
89. saved someone’s life
90. sat on a jury
91. met someone famous
92. joined a book club
93. lost a loved one
94. had a baby
95. seen the Alamo in person
96. taken a road trip
97. been involved in a law suit
98. owned a cell phone
99. been stung by a bee
100. met the love of your life

Friday, January 02, 2009


I am behind I know and have been very sidetracked, But I do want to say I hope all had a very MERRY CHRISTMAS and that your 2009 will be HAPPY! 2009 will probably prove to have many challenges, but with God's help and a smile on our face and calm in our hearts I know we can all meet the challenges that it will bring.

I hope to be back soon to finish up what is turning out to be a very stretched out cruise report! Plus some pictures of activities surrounding the holiday season.