Wednesday, November 6, 2013

# 484 - God's Canvas - Storm Clouds

Living in the country and getting to experience a life with increased solitude and privacy is definitely good for the person who is not afraid of being in touch with nature, with themselves or with God. For me, I need a good balance of socializing combined with moments of being alone.

I guess the "alone" time is beneficial to me since I feel close to God when I am alone, and I feel His presence when I am in the midst of raw nature.

This week, storms rolled in, but the beauty that comes with a storm cannot be discarded from the experience of a storm. And as I looked to the Heavens and admired the clouds rolling in, I felt awestruck at the natural beauty that surrounds us.

Man cannot compete with God's beautiful, ever-changing works of art, always on to behold. God holds a universal canvas in his possession, yet He shares its captivating elements with us, every day. He is a generous artist.

It's up to us to decide whether or not we will take notice of the beauty in front of us.

I notice, and I celebrate the beauty He unselfishly provides.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

# 483 - California Visitors & Stefie Volunteering

This momma is glowing. My youngest daughter, Stefie, is working on her Master's Degree as a Child Life Specialist. These days, she focuses on her studies, on a part-time job and upon volunteering.

For Halloween, Stefie volunteered at a hospital here in Texas so the children could participate in festivities. She did not really have a costume, so she made a wonderful outfit of her Houston Texan apparel along with the football player smudges under the eyes...but I think she's so darn cute!

Stefie is 23 years old, has her B.S. degree, and I know I am her mom, but she is a beautiful person, inside and out. I have been beyond blessed with my two daughters.

It's wonderful to see my youngest enjoying the start of her career path, working with children in hospital settings. Stefie is a professional trained to help children through some of life's most challenging difficulties...sickness, surgeries, injuries, etc., A noble profession.

Another bit of Fall beauty I get to feast upon electronically is my grand-daughter, Coraline. Here she is in her little Mermaid costume!

My oldest daughter, Heather, is doing a great job with her first baby.

Heather and her friend - Heather's face is painted
with Halloween whimsy.

She's learning how difficult and incredible it is to be a mother. It's a never-ending position that has more rewards than can be expressed.

I sure wish I could have been there to give her some sugar from grandma!

And here is my son-in-law, Henry. He's having a tad bit of trouble seeing during this photo.

As for me, I found Halloween this year to be odd as I am usually handing out candy in our old neighborhood, usually to approximately 200 kids. So, this Halloween in the woods, by ourselves, with no neighbors, was kind of odd. I truly missed seeing the kids dressed up and having fun.

However, this week I did get somewhat unexpected visitors from California --- my UNCLE JOE and my AUNT JOYCE!! My Uncle Joe is my grandfather's brother, so it makes me feel comforted to be with my Uncle Joe...that man is the most "grandfatherly" man I've had to fill that roll. I adore him. And my Uncle Joe is a God-fearing man who is against drinking, yet he is as tough as nails. I love how he says, "I've never seen any one's life improve because of alcohol, but I've sure seen a lot disintegrate; men become mush on alcohol and a real man doesn't have time to be mush."

I think Uncle Joe owns half of Orange County in California; he's 84 years old and still works for the water district full time, and he runs his own plumbing shop. Over the years, he built over a dozen homes and he rents those out, so he owns a few blocks in his neighborhood. He's a true representation of American success that follows hard work and stoic diligence. And, he's a LOT of fun. He's a practical jokester, which always brings me delight, especially because he gives me GREAT IDEAS.

Uncle Joe and Aunt Joyce called me a few days ago, to tell me they were about 15 miles away and should be at our house soon.


I FLEW into action trying to prepare. Sgt. Dave had to meet them at the local Walmart to lead them to our rural property, which they were having trouble finding. They had an old fifth wheel with them and they parked on the other side of our acreage and stayed a night, but the rain had them heading out early this next morning...before the rain made the ground too mushy.

So, I had a great week, but as for Halloween, I didn't get any candy, which is a traumatic experience, but I hope everyone else had a great time this past week!