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Posts Tagged ‘blessings’

On Fridays I post FFF to stop and recall blessings of the previous week. Suzanne sponsors this exercise at Living to Tell the Story and invites you to participate too!

1. Alice in Wonderland These past few months have seemed very much like my own personal Alice in Wonderland experience. My body’s response to the meds I was on caused a great deal of cognitive impairment and emotional upheaval. Over the past three months I have experienced hallucinations, depressive thoughts, accentuated fears, and have regularly misread, misheard, and misunderstood much of what filtered through my brain. I heartily sympathize with Alice and all her puzzling and weird experiences. We made the decision a couple of weeks ago to wean off the pain killers, which I have done. I’m dealing with some pain as I increase movement and physio, but the mental restoration has been a blessed relief.

2. Health update Last Wednesday my surgeon moved up to 50% weight bearing to be increased to 75% weight bearing by the time I see him again on November 1. My x-rays show no movement of the prosthesis, which is good, and healthy bone growth around the bone graft. I have some new physio which once again reminds me how weak my leg is, but I am seeing increased strength and ability as I plug away at doing my exercises.

3. Snow and cozy fires We’ve had two snowfalls thus far interspersed with some beautiful Indian summer weather. My husband is a master fire builder and built us this lovely fire to enjoy on an inclement day.

4. Visits I have enjoyed some lovely visits from family and church friends the past few weeks. My pastor’s wife, who is also unwell, organized an encouragement tea and fellowship time for me with church leadership wives a couple of weeks ago. It was a blessing to spend time with these ladies and focus on God’s goodness with them.

5. Bowl of sunshine Some little ‘adopted’ grandchildren came over and plucked the last of the summer blooms for me from our yard. We put them in a bowl of water and enjoyed this sun-dappled bowl of sunshine on our kitchen table for a few days.

Thanks for your patience as I have been away from writing the past few months. I am hoping to resume my Titus 2 Thoughts very soon, as well as stay current with FFF now that my brain fog has lifted. Hope you too, have some blessings from the week to rejoice in!

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FFF daisies

It’s Friday, time to look back over the blessings of the week with Susanne at Living to Tell the Story and other friends.

1. Nature Sanctuary Monday is my husband’s day off this semester. This week we visited a nature sanctuary in the nearby town of Devon. Occasional thawed spots dotted the still-frozen pond where ducks and geese congregated in hopeful anticipation of a quick swim. A lovely boardwalk allowed us to meander through the preserve, the bracing breeze hinting at the coming changes of spring while patches of snow still clung tenaciously to the underbrush. At first glace everything looked brown and barren, but on closer examination I found pussy willows just beginning to show their soft heads. Here are a few pictures from our outing:

Pussy Willows

Nature Sanctuary

Shriveled berries

Cloud reflection

And, of course, a picture of weathered rural buildings!

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2. Photo Book Blessing I had some deals from Shutterfly and was able to finish a photo book of the wedding. A couple of problems cropped up when all my backgrounds and embellishments disappeared after I saved and closed the program before finishing my book. Customer service could not have been nicer to work with, and I was given an extension on my deals until their tech folks could work out the glitches. When I actually finished my work and was ready to order, I entered an advertised code and saved an additional $20 on my order of 3 books.

3. An New Life A dear friend who has suffer the miscarriage of 7 children is expecting a little one in July. We are delighted for this couple and pray God’s protection and blessing during this pregnancy.

4. Clarity God has given me some clarity and direction about a few decisions I need to make. I am so thankful for this.

5. Normal? What’s Normal? I’m finally catching up on things that were not priorities during all that surrounded the wedding – before, during, and after. I have some special events I am preparing for over the next few weeks. What used to be normal seems to be changing!

And just for fun, a bit of trivia from the lid of my Snapple bottle: Real fact # 1014 “Forty is the only number whose letters are in alphabetical order.” There you have it!

Did you enjoy some special blessings this week?

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FFF spring

It’s Friday, time to look back over the blessings of the week with Susanne at Living to Tell the Story and other friends.

This has been a crazy busy week full of blessings and faith-stretching moments.

1. Our son is healing Sunday morning we received word that our son had been admitted to hospital in Shanghai where he ministers and works. It’s at these times that it’s hard for this mama to live on the other side of the world. Many friends joined with us in praying for David and he is now back home recovering, but still having to be treated with IV antibiotics. I’m so grateful that God watches over His own.

2. Sweet chirping of birds How wonderful it is to have the windows open and to hear the sweet chirping of birds outside! The magpies will swoop in soon enough with their raucous demanding noise so this little respite from their clamour is lovely. Yay for Spring!

3. New friends This week I met a new ministry sister and had a lovely visit with her. I’m thankful for my fellow pastors’ wives and the blessing and encouragement each one of them brings to my life.

4. Hi Grandma! I love it when the little ones run up to me and greet me with, “Hi Grandma!” When I was visiting my ministry sister a little neighbor boy told me he would hold my hand to help me down the front stairs because “You always need to help old people get places.” He was so kind and delightfully honest and thoughtful. I chuckled all the way home.

5. A partner in my health journey About two years ago I started a journey to improve my health. The year prior to that I was in so much pain and had such brain fog that my response to “How are you?” was simply, “I’m alive.” And some days I even questioned that. Every day I would drag myself through the day thinking, “My body is killing me.” God lead me to a caring family doctor who has partnered with me in this health journey. I am not a list of symptoms, but a person to her. She listens to me when I tell her about any medical research I have done, she asks for my evaluation after sending me to a specialist, and she supports me in making changes or using alternative remedies that others in my situation have found helpful. That blessing, that freedom of partnership in caring for my health, has allowed me to slowly improve and gives me great hope for continued success.

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It’s Friday, time to look back over the blessings of the week with Susanne at Living to Tell the Story and other friends.

1. No crying Emma made it back safely to Shanghai. Through my husband’s counsel, and God’s help, I did not send her off with a weeping mother at the door.

March Goodbye Emma

2. Refreshing conference My husband was able to attend a preaching conference this past week. He works hard regularly expositing the Scriptures for his students and congregation. I’m grateful that he can be on the receiving end for even a short time and sit under godly, encouraging preaching this week.

3. Time with a child I got to ‘make cards’ with my adopted granddaughter this week. A three-year-old’s perspective of what is nice and what is beautiful is charming. She made a birthday card for a friend and confidently told me, “I bet she’ll really like this card!”

4. God’s provision I wanted to buy a new cutter / trimmer for my card making. I broke one trimmer and was concerned that my second one was getting wobbly. Not only did I find a new trimmer, God laid it on the heart of a friend to give it to me. Her kindness was such a blessing to me.

5. Encouraging chat Today I had a very encouraging Skype chat with my sister-in-law. My husband and I and his sister and her husband were married in a double wedding almost 36 years ago. She remains one of my dearest friends, though we live thousands of miles apart. I am grateful for the technology that allows us to have face-to-face conversations.

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fff winter button

It’s Friday, time to look back over the blessings of the week with Susanne at Living to Tell the Story and other friends.

My daughter’s surprise visit is almost over. Early Monday she heads back to Shanghai and nursing school. Barring any other surprises, we won’t see her again until 11 months from now.

Sometimes I wish I was not such an emotional creature. I am not fond of goodbyes and am not looking forward to that aspect of Monday morning. Anticipating this goodbye is a reminder to me to focus on the time we have been able to spend together with our youngest these past 5 weeks. We dedicated each of our children to the Lord when they were born, not to do our will but to follow His will. Our blessing now is that our children do love the Lord and are following what He has set before them to do, even when that takes them far from us and the comforts of home.

1. Our kids are a blessing to us All of our kids have been, and continue to be, a big help to us in multiple ways. Having Emma staying with us these past few weeks meant she willingly took care of some of the physical stuff that I still need help with after my surgery. That has been a blessing. Thanks, Em!

2. Good report from the surgeon Last Thursday I saw my orthopedic surgeon again. The hip joint has healed well and I don’t need to see him again until October. My muscles are still slow in getting back to normal due to a flare of fibromyalgia. I just need to be patient, listen to my body, and slowly return my physiotherapy exercises as my flare subsides. I hope to be able to retire my cane by the summer!

3. ‘No charge!’There is construction all around our area. This week when Emma was driving she picked up a small bolt in one of the tires. Our local Fountain Tire repaired it without charge, which was an unexpected blessing.

4. Fun with my kids The murder mystery event was lots of fun! It took me a while to ‘get’ my character and to ask the right questions of the other participants, but I eventually caught on. It was nice to meet some new people and spend time with family and friends. (No, I wasn’t the bad guy. They had to kill my character off so I could go home early!!)

5. Thoughtful husband Several times a month my husband surprises me by bringing home a Starbucks’ green tea latte fixed just the way I like it. I love that he does this without me asking, just because he knows I like them.

Oh, I’m going to throw in a lagniappe blessing this week. While shopping this past week I came across a $5 rack and was able to buy a spring coat in my new size for just $5!  Though it may not be the favorite coat I’ve ever owned, it will carry me through the spring and hopefully into an even smaller size in the fall!

 

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On Friday we take a few minutes to share five blessings from the week.  Suzanne at Living to Tell the Story hosts this weekly exercise which has truly encouraged me to both think about our blessings and to thank the Lord for them.

1. Beautiful weather We have had a week of absolutely beautiful weather.  I am so grateful for every day of warmth and sunshine. Thank you, Lord!

2. Harvest We live in a small town outside of the large city of Edmonton.  When you drive out of our town in any direction you see field after field of crops – wheat, canola, barley, and much more.  The farmers have been working hard to bring in the harvest this week.  It is fascinating to me to watch the huge machinery pulling in acre after acre of beautiful crops.  Just as I never tired of the mountain views when we lived in Calgary, I never tire of all the lovely farms around Edmonton.

3. Making cards  When I am having a bad day with my fibromyalgia or my arthritis I sometimes work on making cards.  As a pastor’s wife I have found that my new normal, as determined by my physical limitations, is very different from ministry in my healthy days.  In searching for  new way to minister to the ladies in our church I started writing notes of encouragement, and giving my scripture cards to our ladies on special occasions.  I find making the cards is a good way to start using up my cabinet full of scrapbooking odds and ends, and a therapeutic outlet for me on my down days.

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4. Progress!  My amazing oldest daughter is now down 135 lbs, working closely with her doctor and is swimming and training for a 5 k run.  She’s my accountability partner and I am happy that as of this morning I am down 36 lbs.  Yay!

5. Kale chips Don’t remember if I have mentioned this before but I have discovered kale chips, and absolutely love them.  The recipe is super simple and the result is far tastier than you might imagine.  You rinse the kale, tear the leaves into 1” – 2” pieces, spread them on a kitchen towel or paper towel and dry them as thoroughly as possible.  Spread them in a single layer on a baking sheet and drizzle olive oil on them then sprinkle with seasoning (I use pink salt.)  Bake at 275 for 20 minutes and voila! Crispy, delicious, and nutritious chips!

What are some of your blessings from the week?

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FFF daisies

Welcome to Friday’s Fave Five hosted by Suzanne at Living to Tell the Story.  This weekly exercise prompts us to share five blessings from the week.  It’s encouraging to stop, think about, and recount our blessings. I ‘m glad to be able to participate in FFF.

1.  Humor out my window  I am grateful for humor. I was working at my desk and glanced out the window to see a small, young girl, maybe 8 years old, walking a cat on a leash.  I can’t remember ever seeing someone trying to walk a cat before, and thought, “This should be interesting!” I wasn’t disappointed!!

The cat dashed ahead, yanking the girl behind, then abruptly came to a dead stop as the girl flew past him, then collapsed to the grass where he stretched and rolled leisurely for about a minute.  The little girl stood over the cat and pulled on the leash to get the cat going, but that cat was NOT going to move.  So the girl pulled harder – no luck – then used both hands and planted her feet before pulling up hard on the leash.  The cat suddenly sprang up and vaulted forward a few meters almost knocking the girl off her feet, before collapsing and stretching in the grass again.  Exasperation and frustration were etched on that poor girl’s face.  I’m sure I saw a sly grin on the face of that cat as he once again leaped up and dashed down the street out of my sight, the little girl practically airborne behind him!

2. New friends.  This week we enjoyed a visit from a lady in BC who heard about the Bible College and began supporting the work here.  Though we had previously corresponded, this was our first face to face meeting.  We had warm fellowship with this sister in Christ.

3.  New referral Though I don’t yet have a surgery date for my hip replacement, I now have a referral to an exercise specialist who will help me find exercise that will be appropriate for both my arthritis and my fibromyalgia, which tends to be worse in cold weather.

4. Harvest bounty My husband and I have been blessed with the generosity of friends who have shared some of their garden bounty with us.  Squash, tomatoes, beets, onions….yum!

5. Last class Number three daughter completed, and passed the final course for her bachelor’s degree this week.  She’s been out of school for several years now so it’s a relief and blessing to have everything finished and behind her!  Good job Anna!!

Hope you can take a moment to stop and think of some of the blessings in your life this past week.

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