A Galaxy

Right now it seems that every way you turn there are hurting people. People suffering losses, heartache, dealing with fears, worry for the future and so much more.
My heart goes out to you but I also want you to know you are not alone. It may feel as if you are lost alone in the wilderness and no one understands, but fear not, God is watching out for you. He is prompting and sending his messengers to aid you, care for you and assure you of his love. There are times they will tell you they’ve prayed but other times you may never know who all whispered a prayer for you. Just rest assured, you are not alone in this.


A Galaxy

The night is so dark.
The moon, but a thin rim.
Only a few stars twinkle.
A cloud passes over.
I lie and look and wonder.
How far does it go?
What is hidden beyond the dark?
What is just out of my view?
I see but such a small space,
a few tiny stars
and one sliver of moon.
What does the realm around me hold?
What is spread across the sky?
What beauty might my eyes behold
if I could only see past the dark?

This road I walk
so dark and lonely.
I look all around
and see nothing but pain.
The darkness threatens to choke me,
sadness, loneliness, and grief
are my companions.
I see only the rough road,
the weariness of traveling it.
Tears fill my eyes
as the pain envelopes my soul.

Yet I wonder,
what is beyond my peripheral vision
along this lonely road?
What is outside the scope of my sight?
What are the scenes God orchestrates
behind the curtains of heaven?
Of people set in motion,
of things set in place,
circumstances long foretold,
just for me.

I wonder if only I could see,
what a sight I might behold.
Knees bent low in prayer,
care-filled thoughts ascending.
Angels descending to lend
strength for my journey,
a hand for the rough of the road.
Neighbors and friends
answering God’s prompting
and whispering prayer late at night.
The Spirit of Comfort descending,
wrapping arms of love around me.
Fellow travelers around
who have traversed this pain,
stop and walk along side,
offering encouraging words.
All just for me.

My view is so small,
so wrapped around me.
How many times do I forget
what is out past my sight,
what is hidden beyond the darkness?
Not just one star or two twinkling,
but a galaxy wild and bright.
And out past those millions,
is Jesus who stands
at the right hand of his Father
interceding for me.
He sends out his Spirit
to prompt and move,
all working on my behalf.
And far beyond my imagination
are plans already in place
by the Father
to carry me through.

I don’t travel this road alone.
I have a galaxy around me,
supporting me.
And so do you.


Lisa’s Wedding

If you know Kennedy well at all, you know without a doubt that she is not a friendly child. She has never been outgoing, talking to someone or even smiling at them is a struggle for her. There are a lot of people who talk to her and try to get a word or even a smile out of her, but she gives up nothing.

Some people say, “Just make her do it.” Well be my guest to come and try, trust me when I say I have talked, begged, pleaded, bribed, tried. Other people say, “Just let her be herself.” and so I have. I finally gave up trying, in hopes that she’ll grow out it one of these day and be friendly. I have seen some improvement in the last few months so (whispers) … maybe we’re getting somewhere.

There are a select few special people that she dearly loves. I have come to realize that she is an “all or nothing” kind of girl. When she likes you she will let you know, until then, keep trying in hopes of some day.

There is one person in particular that falls in place in her love-line, directly after her family. I’m not sure when this friendship began, possibly a few weeks after Kennedy was born,  maybe it was a few months later on a bus trip to AR, but whenever it happened, I do believe it’s lifelong. This special Lisa got married on Sat and Kennedy was her flower girl!

Was she ever thrilled!!

She got up early that morning, came over and stood beside my bed and I heard her whisper, “We’re getting married today!”

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Lisa had talked her up, telling her about her flowers and all kinds of good stuff. She couldn’t wait to get there Sat morning and see her bouquet. Of all mornings, it was in the 40’s and windy! I was completely ready for her to be uncooperative like she was at Melissa’s wedding, but she smiled like a champ, even with goosebumps.

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She claimed the day as “her wedding” too, never mind the fact there was a groom involved. He is a good guy, but he’s not on her list yet, try as he might. When she talked about the wedding, it was all about her and Lisa, as if Derek was not involved. We tried to change her mind and bring Derek into the picture when we discussed the wedding at home, but to no avail.

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She couldn’t wait to see Lisa “because we have matching dresses!”

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Pretty as a princess in her dress and sparkly shoes!

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In her mind, there is just nothing as good as an afternoon spent with Lisa. Those dates are long talked about before and after the fact.

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This is the look most people get from her.

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After her photos, she said she was hungry so we ran through the drive through and carefully ate without dripping ketchup on anything. I would have wanted to take the dress off while she ate, but when I tried it on the very first time, the zipper busted at the waist so it got super glued and sewn shut, making the dress a chore to get on and off.

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The wedding decor was fabulous!

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Too many people were trying to talk to her before the wedding and I could tell things were getting worse instead of better in her mind. I knew there was a nursery upstairs so I took her up and put her in there for some peace and quiet. She loved it away from the people and only had one suitor come visit while she played.

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At the last second she just couldn’t take that step forward and go down the aisle by herself, so Marita took her hand and they went together. When she came to sit with me after prayer, I asked her what happened. “I just couldn’t walk by myself!” she said.

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It’s a blurry cell phone photo, but she has Lisa by the chin telling her something!

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We all enjoyed this spot at the reception thanks to Lisa’s love of coffee.

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She brought her little bouquet home and put it in a vase with water. She tells me every day, “Lisa said be careful because it will break, so Dakota can’t touch it!”

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Sunday Morning when we got to church she ran over to Lisa’s Mom, whom she calls Grandma Sara, and said, “I want to go to the wedding again!” I don’t think Grandma Sara shared her sentiments.

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This was her reward for walking up the aisle.

Yesterday I looked at her and said, “Do you think Lisa is having fun on her honeymoon?
She thought for a bit and said, “Yeah… but what about me going too?

To my Unknown Friend

Friday when I went to pick up the girls at school,
I checked the mailbox before leaving.
I was already a few minutes late,
but could’t the girls wait just a tiny bit more
so I can see what came in the mail today?

On a normal day there is the usual junk mail,
a bill or three and sometimes a card with my name,
which I quickly snatch up and rip open.

Today there was a box.
Just that little box and not another thing in the mailbox.
I should have taken a picture of it sitting in there looking back at me.
It had my name and address, but the return address said Kristin Schmucker.
Well, I didn’t know who that was so I was instantly curious.

Here comes the not so good part that I shouldn’t even write
because my mother (and husband) read my blog.
Just read this next part in a whisper so it doesn’t sound so bad.
I proceeded to opened the box while I drove to school.
A pin worked to split the tape and inside was…
just a whole lot of bubble wrap!

A card was on top and after reading it,
I knew a little more about Kristin Schmucker.
Although she may have packaged and shipped the box
from her lovely store, I’m pretty sure she doesn’t know me.
So the mystery remained, who sent the gift?

Inside all the bubble wrap…

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…was a beautiful mug.

If you remember a few weeks ago I wrote a post on this very thing, Be Still.
After reading that, someone, somewhere out there took the time to find and send me this mug. For now it’s sitting here where I see it all the time, reminding me to Be Still. I’m working up the nerve to sip some coffee from it, almost afraid I’ll ruin it if I do.

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You know who you are and I would very much like to know too.
Thank you from the bottom of my heart for thinking of me.
I appreciate it more then I can say because it came at just the right time!
Thank you for listening to Jesus nudge you to do this.


And if you ever feel so inclined,
just let me know who you are so I can thank you properly.
(and because not knowing things like this drives me nuts) 🙂

Maryland Mountains

This past weekend was the wedding of
Eric’s cousin, taking place in western Maryland.
If you are not familiar with the layout of the state of MD,
this is the little piece that squeezes in between WV and PA.

It is a beautiful part of the country!
Mountains, hills, rivers and valleys,
caves and caverns, trails for hiking all around.

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We lived in MD, high on Backbone Mountain, when we were first married.
We worked for Choice Books and spent our days on the road.
I loved coming home to that area, except. for. the. snow!
They get so much snow up on the mountain in the winter
you wonder if you will live to see spring.

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I loved coming back this weekend,
feeling of the mountains around me again,
reminiscing and remembering the good times.
Our kids said we sounded like old people saying,
“Ohhh, remember that? Remember this?”
It just felt like coming home.


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Saturday we drove down Blue Ribbon Road,
our old road we traveled so often.
Coming down the road and seeing this farm house
made me start singing,
“Country roads, take me home!”

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Paul and Naomi lived across the road from us
and became our family while we lived in MD.
It was wonderful to see them for a little bit again.


We attended the beautiful wedding in the afternoon.
It was good to see friends of days gone by.
I don’t want to say, “Old friends” because what does that make me?

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Janell and I went to Bible school together back in the day
and everyone thought we looked so much alike.
She lives in the MD/PA area and when we lived out there,
people would see us together and
would always comment about us looking alike.
Now years later, people at the wedding were still staying the same thing.
Maybe it’s the actions as much as the looks. 🙂


One thing about MD  is the lovely summer weather.
It rarely gets hot, just nice and warm
and cools down again in the evening.
We enjoyed that evening air Saturday night on Jevon’s porch.

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Tall tales being told.

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Sunday was lunch with some more friends.
This group of people took us under their wing back in the day.
They showed true hospitality and welcomed us right in.
Don’t expect to leave after only a few hours spent with them,
“Just plan to stay all day!” they would say.
Sometimes we would come home from Sunday morning church
at 8 that evening.

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We had such good times this weekend it makes me wonder
why we don’t go back to visit more often.

I was quite disappointed to realize
I had forgotten to take a picture of our host and hostess.
It was worth the trip, just to spend time with them.
Lots of good times and late nights laughing, while the kids ran wild.
Let’s do it again.


When Friends Visit

Do you have friends who know all about you,
who you are so comfortable with that it just doesn’t matter
what you say or do, you know they will understand.
We’ve heard each other’s hearts, listened to their cry,
laughed at stories, rolled our eyes at each other
and we are are still friends.
Yes, that kind of friend.

Last week friends came for the day,
this kindred spirit kind of friends.
Not all of our group was able to be here,
but at least these ladies came,
and their kids, we can’t forget them!

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My little helper and I got the porch company ready.
It was forecast to be a warm day, but we used the porch anyway.
When you have a group this size, you need a bigger space than the kitchen.

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She wanted to pick the eggs out of the nest.

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Although we all live within an hour of each other,
we don’t get together often enough.

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And speaking of the kids …
there were a lot of them, primarily girls!
If they didn’t know each other well before,
they did before they went home.

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We had good food of course.
I didn’t make any of it, they brought it all.
That is what you call a good friend!

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Whew. Finally, the kids are fed and on their way, now it’s our turn!

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Since the kids took care of themselves for the most part,
we spent the rest of the day here.
It was one of those mind and soul refreshing days.
Time spent with friends is never wasted!

Now I’m ready for another porch party.
Who is next?


There are these people called sisters.
You are fortunate if you have one,
and I am one of those.

We were born 11 years apart, my sister and I,
2 brothers in between us.
I thought I would never have a sister
until I found Mom’s pink birth announcements
before Sarita was born.
When they called and told me I had a sister,
I just smiled, because I already knew.

For a long time that’s all we were, just sisters.
I would introduce her as my little sister.
She would wiggle shyly and not say anything.
I combed her hair, dressed her up,
drug her around taking pictures of her.
She followed me around when my friends came over.
She was just the little sister.

Life kept moving along.
She grew up and got married (while I cried),
she had children and suddenly,
we were more then sisters,
we were best friends.
We were fighting the same battles,
figuring out life together,
calling and talking almost every day.

We are so much the same, yet so very different.
I talk too much. She doesn’t have much to say.
She is quiet and shy, I am generally not.
We think the same. We laugh the same.
We both inherited that dreadful
crying streak from Mom.
We are family. We are friends.
We are sisters.

This past weekend she came to visit,
her little family in tow, and what a fun weekend it was.
I was so glad they were coming on Thursday so the
weekend would be a little longer.
And then Sunday, thank you Jesus,
it snowed them in and they stayed an extra day.

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Sarita and our little girls.

I laughed more this weekend than I have in a long time.
Most of it was over the dumbest little things,
but there is no one who understands those little
things like a sister.

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Grandma sent a few more gifts for Kennedy.
The piggy bank was a winner.
Put 10 coins in, open the bottom,
dump them out and put them in again.

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We tried to take a few pictures of Libby.
Tried is the key word there.
She dearly loves her Mommy and would either
crawl toward her, or cry because she wasn’t there.

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Our little boys were just itching for cupcakes
with blue frosting. Everything must be blue.
So we obliged and figured if the frosting is blue,
it will keep the Moms from eating any.

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It’s almost frightening sometimes how much some of our kids act alike.
Bryce and Kennedy share a lot of traits.
One of which is eating all the frosting off the top of the cup cake.

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Meal time was just circus city!
When there are more kids then adults, it gets wild.
All the littles needed something Now! and the babies cried.
It was a fun circus.

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Our babies are all tag babies.
They will find the tag or the silkie edge to play with on their blankets.

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The men and kids went out to play in the snow on Sunday.
We were happy to stay inside and watch
And breathe deeply of the wonderful quietness.

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Later we made soft pretzels.
We were just about tired of cooking and cleaning up the next mess till the weekend was over. Why do these people want meals all the time?
If it were up to us, we would just continually snack and never need a big meal.

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Madison and Kennedy are 10 years apart.
I told Madison many many moons ago,
that was Sarita and I sitting there.
She had no idea that we were that far apart in age.
I also told her that one day Kennedy could be her best friend,
it doesn’t matter how much younger she is.

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We ended the weekend with a little Curious George
and a few more tear rolling laughs!

I know my sister well enough to know she is laughing
but wiping tears while she reads this.
That’s ok, because I am too.

For there is no friend like a sister in calm or stormy weather; To cheer one on the tedious way, to fetch one if one goes astray, to lift one if one totters down, to strengthen whilst one stands. -christina rossetti

The Little Things

It’s the little things that matter.

Enjoy the little things in life,
for some day you will look back
and realize they were the BIG things.

Am I appreciating little things in life that matter?

Tiny hands. Little feet.
A squishy little hug.
A sticky kiss.
The word “Mama” 1000 times a day.

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Laughing with my children.
Listening to their stories.
Watching them play.

Saying “Yes.”
Seeing the smile when you tell them
you did their chores for the day.
Building a fort for him.
Baking cookies with them.
Am I speaking their language?

Little things with friends can be anything…
A little note.
A smile.
Your interest.

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A letter to a friend.
A phone call, “How are you today?”
Am I taking time for just a little?

When I think of the world around me…
Tiny Spring flowers.
Little buds on the trees.
A tiny white snowflake.
Am I seeing these for the beauty they are?

Blog 2-18-15 (4)Do I relish the snugly blanket,
my cup of coffee,
while hearing little chatter and giggles?

Am I appreciating
one more memory game,
one more kiss goodnight,
one more hug?

Never stop doing little things for others.
Sometimes those little things
occupy the biggest part of their heart.

Jesus, help me remember
the little things in life matter.
When I think I would rather be
out doing big things for you,
help me remember the
little things I am doing,
are actually big in someone’s life.

Help me appreciate the little beauties of life.