Friday, November 18, 2011

What is it I want??

Today I wonder what it is that I want to accomplish through my attempt to blog....I started this process for me to work through some of the issues that seemed to plague me thinking that no one would ever read my words but have realized that is not true...thank you to those who have been encouraging me. Along with that encouragement came the realization that people are reading so I had best be sensitive to what and who I write about, it kind of scared me off a bit and I have been remiss in posting once a week as I had originally wanted...which leads me to the question "What is it I want this blog to accomplish?"

So here are a couple of things I have come up with....I want to share my journey in hopes that it  is an encouragement to others, I want to be disciplined and follow through with writing more often as the creative side gives me pleasure and since I love to study, I want to apply what I learn in God's word as I walk through this journey. I am not sure if I am close to accomplishing that as of yet but I am not a quitter and will continue towards this goal. Of course the first verse that comes to mind is well know...

"Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us," Hebrews 12:1

I am not sure how well I have run the race as of late but I know I will continue to persevere,  I pray that you will too.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Seaweed sandwich...

Yup, a seaweed sandwich!
That is an apt description of how I feel lately. It has been a long time since writing and there are many reasons for that, I am sure that I will elaborate soon but for now there is still much to formulate about the journey that I have been on. So much of my healing involves stories that are not mine to tell so I have hesitated to try and put it into words....although I need to be careful about what I share I have also come to realize that putting it off  is one of my coping skills...avoidance.

When life is busy and full I prioritize....and grieving the losses and mistakes in my life has NOT been a priority, right or wrong I push it off and move on with more 'pressing' matters. This week I have thought of Jonah often...I believe there is a reason for that. Much like Jonah I have tried to hide from what I know needs to happen and find myself upset over the loss of my 'thistle'...sad but true. 

So I have found myself inside a large fish...
1Then Jonah prayed to the LORD his God from the belly of the fish, 2saying,
    "I called out to the LORD, out of my distress,
   and he answered me;
out of the belly of Sheol I cried,
    and you heard my voice. is time to continue on, pick off the seaweed and continue on to Ninevah
9 But I with the voice of thanksgiving
   will sacrifice to you;
what I have vowed I will pay.
    Salvation belongs to the LORD!" (Jonah 2 ESV)
...and pray that I will not mourn the loss of a thistle but rejoice God's mercy.


Wednesday, September 28, 2011

How did I get to the meaning of fruit????

So many things to write about....the problem is to come up with a concise way of putting it to paper (or screen). I have instead simply stayed away from my computer and not written at all. I feel bad about that as I have learned that writing something I enjoy and learn here goes =)

The past couple of weeks have been busy as usual. Each week I am going into Surrey weekly for a class  but the best part is my 'grandma date day' with Austin. It has been so much fun to pick him up from daycare, watch his face light up as he runs to hug me, then proceeds to convince me to play with him and his friends. This week I was greeted by him..and Pria...and Kendra...and Maddie...each week it seems as though I make a new little friend who needs to say hello and give me a hug. I am the master sand castle builder and I now have a reputation among these smiling 4 year old never takes much to convince me to spend an additional 15 or 20 min helping to build a city in the sand :) Once that ritual is over, Austin and I head off for a few hours of bonding time, dinner, stories and I love it!! I share this story because I want my friends to know that there is much good in my life...even in the midst of this difficult season of life, there is much joy!

That said, I am having a hard time posting about some of the important developments in my life. In order to share some of what has been on my mind, and in my life, I must give background....and at this time background is not appropriate on a public forum.....suffice it to say that I humbled by the lives of others and the struggles they face. So much hurt in the world. As I write this I look forward to healing, for myself and others....more grateful than ever that I have the hope of Jesus and His promises.

And with that I shall segue into another story....this weekend I cleared off the patio, we get all day sun and some of my beloved plants have had a difficult time surviving the heat of summer....with no background required,  I am struck by the tenacity of my cherry tomato plant. It is wilted and quite sad looking yet the fruit does not seem to stop coming...the past few weeks I have been surprised to pick a small bowl of sweet little tomatoes each day. My life is much like that plant. I thirst, I wilt, I wonder if I will survive yet with a bit of tending I am still able to bear fruit.

Did you know that the word 'fruit' appears over 200 times in the English translation of the Bible?? This got me to wondering what kind of things did it represent over 200 times? There are of course 3 main meanings-fruit as in a general food group, fruit providing imagery for abundance and the metaphoric extension or the result of an in Creation is the fruit of God's work!! Guess who is going to go and do a bit of research on 'fruit'....yup, that would be me!!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Split personality

This past week has been one of relaxation and reflection...I have stayed up all night, slept in late, read, spent time with friends, read some more...for the first time in years I have had no schedule, no agenda and no responsibility to anyone but me. It has been very good for me!

It is during this down time that I have realized something that will be vital my process of healing ...I have a split personality!! I grew up in a different world than I have chosen to spend the bulk of my adult life. During my marriage, I lived 2 lives and it was exhausting so I took a deep breath, chose God and moved into my new chosen lifestyle...a choice I will never regret!

This year however, as I delve into my Pandora's box the many influences and incidents that moulded me as a child, I find that I have regressed back to some of those old and 'comfortable' habits. I am surprised...and I am not. The old coping mechanisms have crept back in without me being overly aware of them, it sometimes feels easier.

The problem with that is two fold: I don't want to revert and I don't want to take the easy route.

Understand, not all of the old habits are not taking over, God has freed me of many of them...the problem is I have have taken some of them back. I find myself being more critical, using strong expletives to express frustration, building walls that are not meant to be penetrated...strike out first and protect yourself, this is a skill I learned at a young age and it worked well for me then. I know this is not the answer and yet when I feel the pain, it is is much easier than letting others share that pain, it is easier than allowing people to see me weakened by it, it is certainly easier than actually allowing myself to fully feel it again....and it is unhealthy.

The good part of this is that with that realization, I also feel closer to God than I have in awhile. I feel Him showing me that these old 'skills' do not bring me comfort, He does. I feel Him allowing me to see Him in the small things that bring me joy. I feel Him reminding me that I am loved by Him (and others). I feel Him leading me to a path of healing and calming the fears that have jumped out to ambush me of late.

As I write this, the temptation is to hit delete...I will not. I instead will pray that I do not allow the enemy to continue with his lies, that I would not believe those lies when he persists. I pray that perhaps someone reading this will find comfort that they are not alone during the times that try us, that it will be a testament to a loving God who does not forsake us but continues to transform us.

The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life. 
John 10:10 NLT

Sunday, August 28, 2011


This week I have a read 5 books that do not relate to work at all while drinking a lot of iced coffee on my patio in the sun, or while sitting in the shade at Mill Lake....I am now starting a much needed week off!

The past few weeks I have been on auto pilot, simply getting through each day with one thing on my mind: that this week is coming, that I have no plans, that I plan on reading and most of all naps!! Yup, sleep and read all day, dinners & fun in the evening....please Lord, let this week be rejuvenating.

Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest.  Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.
Matthew 11:28-30 NLT 

 Weary...yes, I am weary. Burdens...yes, I have many. The Lord says 'come to me'.... if we want the rest we need to be able to move toward Him, today I am one step closer and I am grateful for the yoke He gives me. Jesus himself is the true Sabbath, He gives us a personal I revel in it and feel better than I have in a very long time. Thank you Jesus ♥

Saturday, August 20, 2011

God's gifts...

This past week seemed fairly uneventful... as though life has been moving in slow motion, I got through each day with minimal effort but still felt a bit disconnected from it all. I have prayed that God would provide me with small gifts to help me feel always He has provided.

Last Saturday I was blessed with a new friend, she was a gift in many ways...this friend was a gift, she in not someone I will see often as she lives far away but her words will stay with me and be an encouragement as I continue my journey.

That evening, I had dinner with a friend who also has a son with diabetes, it was not a good week for him. The experience reminded me how fortunate I am that Jordan is so good at managing his own diabetes...he is an amazing young man and I am so proud of him for more reasons than I have room to write about in a blog...another gift.

Sunday dawned with sunshine and the promise of an afternoon at the park with another special friend and her little boy....the fellowship of the afternoon was refreshing, an affirmation...I enjoyed the time with her and her little man watching him as he grows and learns...yup, you got it, yet another gift.

Monday I was met at the door by my grandson with a dramatic "ta da da da" (reminded me of the old Imperial Margarine commercial), he was quite proud of his work for the week and could not wait to share his accomplishment. It still puts a smile on my face to think of it. We enjoyed dinner, the park and story time before I headed off to my appointment. I am so fortunate to have this bundle of joy in my life, he certainly helps me gain perspective and showers me with unconditional love ♥ He and his mommy are certainly a gift.

Each day that followed came with a gift. Some big, some little, when I failed to recognize them, He reminded me that they were just that. I am once again humbled by his gentle and caring manner this week. God knew that I felt fragile and bruised and each day he gave me comfort, gently coaxing me through each day...finishing off the week with a beautiful and quiet Saturday and the promise of a fun filled day at Science World with my kids (this is one of our favorite things to do)...I look forward to many laughs and looks of wonder as we explore tomorrow.

Although there are parts of my life that are in question and upheaval, God has graciously reminded me not to become overwhelmed by the big picture but to focus on each day and the blessings that come with seek out the gift of the day and be grateful for know that He loves me, even when I find that hard to believe...I guess it was an eventful week after all...

So don’t be misled, my dear brothers and sisters. Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.He chose to give birth to us by giving us his true word. And we, out of all creation, became his prized possession.
James 1:16-18

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Airshow weekend...

The airplanes over head bring mixed feelings for me...I love them, the noise, the vibrations the feeling you get as they approach and then before you know it they are on the other side causing your head to flip around as you try and track them...yes, since I was a little girl I have loved the airshow, sitting with my gramps in a field eating berries waiting for the next one to fly overhead, listening to his endless stories (he had a love for all things mechanical and would talk about old planes, single engines, bi planes...I can't remember what he said, but I can remember feeling so loved by his side). These are the memories that make me smile, the ones that warm my heart, the ones I hold dear ♥

Airshow weekend also marks my anniversary, this would be 29 years...I loved that the planes flew over us on our wedding day as our family and friends gathered in the most beautiful yard (my safe haven for years before and years after)...little did I know back then that the roar of the jets would one day remind me of the turbulence that marriage endured, that each year I would hear them over head and be reminded of a moment of happiness and a lifetime of hardship.

This year is bit different, this year I watched the jets and simply enjoyed them, this year I was not immediately reminded of my failure but watched in wonder wishing Austin was here so I could see the amazement on his little face as they came so close to our patio (I can so hear him say "Whoaaaa Gramma, look at that" in his extremely dramatic & trademark style). I am grateful this year is different, maybe I have too many other hurts to deal with, maybe the failure doesn't hold the same grip on me, maybe I am just ready to enjoy the simple moments in life...I am not sure of the reason but the reality is I shall always be reminded of many memories on this weekend....the gift is that the good memories definitely outweigh the bad ones.

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.

James 1:17 (ESV)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Thank you ♥

This week has been peppered with little rays of encouragement...and I am thankful for them. None of my circumstances have changed but it is my hope and prayer that my response to them will. As I continue on this journey I find writing helps, that it is a soothing balm long abandoned. Many years ago I wrote often, however there was not time while raising my children so I put down my pen and stopped. It is one of the solitary activities that I am finding comfort in once again.

Imagine my surprise last week when an friend I have not seen in years commented on this blog, then the mother of a close friend and finally an author that I am a big fan of!! She said it had been accidental..and it hadn't... that God had led her here and she took time to send me an email...I hope to one day be able to let her know how much it meant to me, how it came on a day when I was feeling quite was amazing the power her few words held, it was amazing that God used her to encourage someone she did not know. It was as though God had sent me a quick note using three very different and unlikely people to do so...and I am humbled by them.

I love the book of Exodus, God uses it often to encourage me. Today I cannot help but think of Aaron, Hur & Moses...

10 So Joshua fought the Amalekites as Moses had ordered, and Moses, Aaron and Hur went to the top of the hill. 11 As long as Moses held up his hands, the Israelites were winning, but whenever he lowered his hands, the Amalekites were winning. 12 When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up—one on one side, one on the other—so that his hands remained steady till sunset. 13 So Joshua overcame the Amalekite army with the sword. Exodus 17:10-13 NIV

Thank you to those of you who encourage me, thank you to those of you who accept me cracks and all, thank you to those of you who love me and lift me up. Thank you to those who stand by me and hold my hands high. Thank you to God who does indeed love me unconditionally and has blessed me with many Aaron & Hur's.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Cracks in my amour...

This week I have repeatedly heard people say that you should let people see the cracks in your amour as 'this is where God shines through'....stick with me on this thought.
This morning I went on a 'walk' with a small group of people I do not know well, after many excuses I decided that I would go. What I was unaware of was this was much more of a hike than a then it was too I took a deep breath and started up the mountain. This is when I met the lovely Stella, she was my buddy, she is an artist and saw more beauty than I, she was encouraging and her stories kept my mind off the lack of breath and pain I was feeling...did I mention that this hike was 45+ minutes uphill...I kept walking, not looking up for fear of quitting, just putting one foot in front of the other and hoping I would make it and not die right there on the trail. Up we went and Stella make mention of this cracked armour again...I said nothing and kept walking up the uneven terrain and crossing the makeshift bridges. It was a gorgeous trail with the sun breaking through and I looked at the layers of beauty (Stella's words) that God had created. When I thought I would surely die, a wonderful meadow appeared filled with summer flowers, a breeze and a glorious flat stretch...I thought I had made it only to find we were about half way....I kept going. Eventually I came to the top, although it had hurt and there had been uncertainty, I made it!!

The view was nothing short of spectacular, I recognized land marks and I was above it..with the encouragement of strangers (now friends), I had overcome this trail and sat on the edge of the mountain with the sun shining...those shafts of light I had enjoyed on the trail were only a small piece of the sun that God had put forth this morning. We started down (much much easier thank goodness) I had more time and breath to enjoy the scenery and it hit life is much like that hike. As I moved closer to the top, there was pain and a lack of breath but without it I may have missed the glory of what God gave me at the top. It was as though he said, "Yes my darling, this is a year of pain...hurtful and seemingly unattainable however if you focus on me and my beauty I will get you to the top and you shall enjoy all I have to offer in a new light".

Today God shone light through my cracked armour and with His help I shall heal from the attacks that fractured it to begin with...

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

To wither or not to wither...that is the question...

Finally summer has arrived and my poor tomato plant is feeling the heat....although I water it each day (sometimes twice), the lack of shade has made it look wilted and some of the leaves are burned. The fruit is still growing and maturing, it soaks up the water I give it and yet sometimes even though I care for it, the circumstances cause it stress and it dies a little.

Today I feel a bit like my baby the circumstances of my life make me die a little, not enough to stop the growth or wither completely but enough to feel damaged. I feel caught off guard and unsure of what the next move should be. Fortunately I have hope, fortunately I have people around me who will be supportive, fortunately I have a God who loves me and understands me better than anyone, fortunately He loves me despite the damage. Tonight all I can do is turn to Him and pray...fortunately He has given me a prayer when I cannot pray for myself....
17Though the fig tree should not blossom,
nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail
and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold
and there be no herd in the stalls,
18 yet I will rejoice in the LORD;
I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
19GOD, the Lord, is my strength;
he makes my feet like the deer’s;
he makes me tread on my high places.
Habakkuk 3 (ESV)

Thursday, July 28, 2011


This week is coming to an end...the weather today is absolutely gorgeous, it makes me want to do something but I am quickly discovering that I am not sure what to do with myself. I am very good at keeping myself busy, it is in my dna, downtime is something that is fairly foreign to me. That said, one of my many goals for this next year is to learn how to fill my time with things that I enjoy....Funny, I am learning that I am more of an introvert than I thought, I enjoy things that are often quite solitary. Simply something to make me ponder...hmmmm....

I guess for now I will stick to what I know...books...this week I picked up Lawrence Hill's Book of Negroes. It is a beautifully written story and I look forward to spending some time being engrossed by Aminata and her life. It is no wonder that this is an award winning book, so far it is stunning and haunting at the same time. A bit of trivia...this book is only in Canada by this title, everywhere else it has been published as Someone Knows My Name. Although it is a fiction work, it is inspired by a historical document also called the 'Book of Negroes'...yes, I am a bit geeky and yes, I look forward to spending some time with this book. I will let you know how it goes :)

Saturday, July 23, 2011

♪ ♫ Oh...what a glorious day

This morning I woke up with a bit of pain from an abscess but when I walked into the living room and saw the sunshine I could not help but think of Casting Crowns and the song Glorious Day ♫. I marvel at how often this cd lifts my spirits and look forward to them coming in October!!

Although this past month has opened a Pandora's box , this week I have been blessed...each time I felt down or stressed, God has put a song on my heart or in my head...he has blessed me with the melody of some one else's talent, allowed it to wash over me and soothe some of the unrest that I have been feeling. After all these years of loving God, I am still surprised by how much he cares for me.

Today I will meditate on Psalm 91 and be grateful that I dwell in the shelter of my Lord.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Mighty is the Power of the Cross

I often drive through the mall parking lot on my way home, each time I see the same homeless man under the same tree and I wonder.... some days I wonder if there is some small kindness I could to to help his day along, some days I wonder why he picks the same spot (he has no sign and it is not a place people could stop at but it is under a tree and therefore dry or shady), some days I wonder why he chooses to live that way. Today I wondered what caused this one time small and beautiful baby boys life to take a turn of hopelessness, was it his childhood that caused him pain and dysfunction or poor choices as an adolescent...did he have a family once and loose them or choose to leave them. Whatever the circumstance, today he once again sits alone with a look of sadness on his dirty and weathered face. I wonder what his life would be like if he was able to embrace the power of Christ and the sacrifice he made on the cross.

As I start a journey of my own healing I am grateful that I do not have to have the feeling of hopelessness to contend with. Yes I have some memories I could live without, I have made some choices that were poor and the consequences are often difficult....what I have is the assurance that Jesus does indeed love me and will walk this path with me, that my saviour cares and will be supportive even when I make bad decisions, that He has put some wonderful people in my life to help me along the way...I have HOPE, it comes to me through the power of the cross.

Hope is never a static or passive thing. It is dynamic, active and life sustaining. This is obvious as we spend time in the Word. A biblical hope is not an escape from reality or from problems, far from it but it also doesn’t leave us idle, drifting or just rocking on the front porch. If our hope is based on God's promises, it will put us in a position to make changes. That said, it still may not be easy to summon up hope at times but it is possible and attainable...for this I am again grateful. (Click on picture for the song)
Psalm 62:5 My soul, wait in silence for God only, For my hope is from Him.

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Baby steps

Well today I did it...I went to my first session of counselling and feel more ready to let the healing begin. One of the first things is to let this next year be about me, it is going to mean some hard work but now that the decision is made I am up for it. When Grandma B passed this year one of the things I brought home was a garbage bag of Kleenex boxes (the super soft kind) is like she knew I would need alot of them and provided MANY boxes. One of the decisions will be if I should take a 9 month course based on freedom, it is in Surrey but I think it may be worth it.

So my friends, this post is simply to ask those of you who know (&love) me to pray. For now I am off to bed but will keep you up to date without getting into too much detail, if you are curious and want to know all you need do is ask...I will share over a coffee ☺

Monday, July 4, 2011


As I sat home on New Years Eve, I knew this would be a tough year. There were many things that would change and need to be dealt with....I just was not sure how to start the process. It seems as though the process has been started without my permission.

One of the hurdles would be facing Jordan's graduation--check. This is a wonderful milestone for him and I am proud however it means facing the pre-empty nest syndrome. The idea of all my babies grown up means that it is now time to face some of the emotional backlash from my life that I chose to put on the back burner as I concentrated on raising my children. I will NEVER regret putting the kids first but it means that now I need to dig into the past and start some healing of my own, I am not looking forward to the difficult journey that I am about to embark on. A few of the problems have reared their ugly heads a bit before I was completely ready...I know this is life but had hoped to do it my way and in my time...hmmm, problem #1 is obviously control!!

Problem # 2 is that I have to look at some family issues that have spiralled so out of control. I do not even know where to much hurt that I do not know where the healing or forgiving can begin. I thought there may be an opportunity when I received a call from my brother this week but unfortunately it was not meant to be and only served to compound the hurt that is felt by all of us. I will continue to pray about it and hope that there can be healing in the future.

I also need to look with in myself and face some of the hurts and disappointments that stem from a bad I am forced still to stay in after 16 years...there are issues there that have allowed me to harden my heart towards certain emotions and again I am not sure where to start to heal those wounds.

Problem #3 is what to do with what is left of my future...on the bright side there is not too much of it left to plan so I am hoping this will be an easier one to cope with. I have many great friends in my life and I value them all...even so I sometimes feel the loneliness creep in, I need to come up with some hobbies that will keep that at bay :)

I am writing this in a fairly public forum, not to get sympathy (or pity) but to try and hold myself accountable to taking those first steps that seem so overwhelming. Our choices all have consequences that need to be faced eventually and I pray that I have the courage and strength to keep moving forward. The first step is to get into a more regular routine with my counsellor and of course to spend more time with is through Him that I will find the healing I so desire.

Thursday, June 9, 2011

Life can change in an instant..

I wonder if there will ever be a time when I am able to rest...not lay on the couch for an afternoon or sleep in but truly REST!! Every time I think that life must settle down a new set of circumstances arise and the chaos begins.

I was naive in thinking that once the moves were over things would settle down...that was not to be. With Tif's move came a change not only in address but in marital status, she is doing wonderfully and I am so proud of her but my mommy heart cannot help but break...I know all too well how difficult the next years can be. In an instant her life is changed...

Jordan is graduating and I am feeling bad that I cannot be like the other parents who are being extravagant in a gift that shows how proud they are...oh I am proud, the man that he is becoming brings me to a teary eyed bundle, he is kind, considerate, caring, funny, responsible...the list goes on and on....I just do not have the means to financially show him how proud I am and he understands this...another reason to be incredibly proud of him. The surprise gift that God gave me so many years ago has brought me great joy. He has seemingly changed in an instant....

A couple of weeks ago there was an accident, no one was hurt but the was simply a moment of inattention but in an instant the car was no longer running which brought yet another set of inconveniences. I am not mad about the car but it reminds me once more of how quickly things can change. Thank you Lord that no one was hurt, so much can change in a instant.....

This week I got some news that cannot be fully shared but please believe me when I say this news is sobering to say the least....a young and talented man who has been fighting a deadly battle with cancer found that he cannot win....His life, and that of those who love him were changed in just a instant....

As I struggled with the past month of change I realized that there is little that does not change...the one constant, the one that never changes is our Lord...God who loves us and is unfailing and constant in all He does...

16 Now when people take an oath, they call on someone greater than themselves to hold them to it. And without any question that oath is binding. 17 God also bound himself with an oath, so that those who received the promise could be perfectly sure that he would never change his mind. 18 So God has given both his promise and his oath. These two things are unchangeable because it is impossible for God to lie. Therefore, we who have fled to him for refuge can have great confidence as we hold to the hope that lies before us.
Hebrews 6:16-18 NLT

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Where you treasure is, so shall your heart be too ♥

Wow how time flies when you are feeling stress.....actually I must admit to being less stressed than I thought I would be this month....more tired but less stressed :)

The best place to start are probably the 2 family moves...both Tif and I changed our addresses and lifestyle within a week of each other, it was not planned that way but in our world things like that just happen. The day we said goodbye to Grandma B, Tif and I looked at a 2 bdrm apartment, somehow it felt like home, it was much different than what we had envisioned but it had a certain charm that made me decide to go for it and move in a three week time all fairness, Tif had decided to move already but we figured what the heck, lets do it!! Now understand that living in a VERY large bdrm home with a double car garage and moving into an apartment was no easy kids would say I had too much crap, I however told them I was guarding treasures that they would one day be grateful for. Whether crap or treasure I had to make some tough decisions about what could come with us and what had to be sent to the was not easy to downsize so drastically but I did it!!

Jordan & I are very happy with our decision to live more simply...we now live in an older building downtown, we are within walking distance to work, the mall and best of all Mill Lake...we have far less cleaning to do as our square footage has been cut in more than half...we have far less bills each month as we no longer work to pay for a large house we do not need...and best of all it gives us more time to spend with the people we love. Yup, I had reservations and I still have moments of panic when I realize how big the change has been but in the end the pros outweigh the cons and we are happy...and for that I am grateful!!

Tif has also make a huge change, she is now living in a 3bdrm condo that is much closer to the freeway which will cut down her commute...this change comes with many others but she is happy in her new home as well, there is a real kitchen, washer and dryer and with some space she is finding it easier to keep clean....Austin loves his Toy Story room and we all love how the place looks and makes her feel. It is my prayer that as she starts this new chapter she is blessed.

God is indeed good, His promises are real....I needn't have worried as I am sure that God knew where we were going reminds me of this passage in Luke 12...

22 Then Jesus said to his disciples: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat; or about your body, what you will wear. 23 For life is more than food, and the body more than clothes. 24 Consider the ravens: They do not sow or reap, they have no storeroom or barn; yet God feeds them. And how much more valuable you are than birds! 25 Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to your life[b]? 26 Since you cannot do this very little thing, why do you worry about the rest?

27 “Consider how the wild flowers grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you, not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. 28 If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today, and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, how much more will he clothe you—you of little faith! 29 And do not set your heart on what you will eat or drink; do not worry about it. 30 For the pagan world runs after all such things, and your Father knows that you need them. 31 But seek his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.

32 “Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has been pleased to give you the kingdom. 33 Sell your possessions and give to the poor. Provide purses for yourselves that will not wear out, a treasure in heaven that will never fail, where no thief comes near and no moth destroys. 34 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Crazy as always...

Well as usual, life in the Ramsay house is a bit insane....a bit more than even I anticipated however we take one day at a time, one moment at a time and we continue to move forward.

We are moving this month, along with Tif, and a wedding and a Gala and a trip...and a...and a...well, this is my life, crazy as always. There is much that can be said and written about but my thoughts are not super concise at this moment, I need to go and pack for a two day trip to Toronto, I love going but it is not all fun and games so I hope to get a decent sleep tonight.

So for now, I will continue to move forward and get ready for a quick trip and hopefully find some time tomorrow to write about Grandma B as promised ♥

Monday, March 28, 2011

Guitars and new homes...

Ahhh, here I sit relaxing while Jack Johnson plays guitar in my living room....actually it is my talented young man playing but still it is one of my most favorite things to do.... I love listening to Jordan play any one of his guitars...he has a love and appreciation for music that makes me smile from the inside out, it is one of our greatest bonding fact we have decided that our next big date will consist of dinner and *RUSH* much as I sometimes hate that my babies are all growed up I must admit that I also love the experiences we can share now that they are all grown up!!

Tif called tonight and they got the house!! I am so excited for her, she has worked so hard the last 5 years. I am so very proud of her tenacity, never did she let the circumstances of life stop her from working toward her goal nor did she expect others to pay her way. Now she gets to move from a not so nice basement suite to a townhouse with a real kitchen and some space!! Looks like we have some painting to anyone who knows me knows I LOVE to paint...stress daughter has also caught that bug so her and I will have some bonding moments while filling holes and sprucing the new place up!!! will be a bit crazy if we both end up moving the same weekend (Stefan and Jordan will be some kind of tired), guess it is good for them that we have not yet found a place to call home...besides Tif has now called the first weekend of May which also happens to be the G7 Gala and Go Fusion Makeover Fashion Show....damn, we are all going to be tired...good thing we have until June before we have to be gone, sometimes I wonder if my crazy life is for real!!

Well this was not at all how I envisioned this post...what can I say, I love my babies and they always supersede all other thoughts....I was going to update you on my makeover challenge but there will be plenty of time for that tomorrow, until then my friends I will leave you with this seemingly appropriate quote:

I still find each day too short for all the thoughts I want to think, all the walks I want to take, all the books I want to read, and all the friends I want to see.
~John Burroughs

Saturday, March 26, 2011

I really should do this more often...

So much going on these days and no time to sit and blog it...sheesh. Over the past month I have continued to work out with minute results (here is the picture for the whole world to see), I have said good bye to my very best friend (which is devastating to say the least), had a few slaps in the face from work (which I will get over in the end) , come down with yet another lung issue (that will teach me for abusing my body for so long) and spent an evening with my birthday girl Julie at Bon Jovi (SO much fun!!).

All this makes it a bit hard to focus on one thing since I have only a short window of time before I have to go and run the 5K Makeover Challenge Race (well, I am sick so I will probably walk 2.2 and call it a good attempt). I have learned much about myself these past weeks, things I suspected and some that have come out of left field and hit me up side the head! Fist I would like to point out that even during the high stress I call life, these past weeks have been awesome, I feel better than I ever have and am finally motivated to continue improving my health rather than obsessing about the weight...which is a good segway to the fact that I have a much lower self image than I ever imagined...there I admitted it! I did not realize that I had spent a good portion of my life hating me and then my body, kind of makes you go hmmm. When I was a size 8 and looked great, I was in a time where I did not like who I was very much. I finally took control of my life and became a much better person only to transfer that hate to my now not so perfect body. Funny (not ha ha ) how the things we hear can affect us for so very long.

Anyway..did not intend for this to be a depressing post, I wanted it to be one that is thankful for the support of those who love me without fail (I will blog about Granny B later who did that with amazing flare!) I wanted you to know that after 8 long weeks I have finally lost 5 pounds and a total of 14 inches and plan on continuing the journey. I still hate the way I look but I am starting to see it in a different light, I am now more concerned with how I feel...this is a step in the right direction!

More about Granny B & Bon Jovi to come!!

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

♪ ♫ In the ghetto ♪

As I earnestly search for a new home, this Elvis song keeps playing over and over in my head...although I am not ready to admit defeat, I am also not having much luck at finding a place to call home. The bottom line is with exorbitant rental costs we will not be able to stay in an area anywhere close to what we have grown accustomed to.

Now please understand that it makes me sad but at the same time I feel gratitude...a long time ago when Gary & I separated I asked that God would allow me to stay in a safe and stable home until the kids finished school. He has honored that request and I have been able to keep the kids on the same street from Josh's grade 2 year to Jordan's graduation (21 years~ wow), not many single moms can say that and it was very important to me. Thank you God for your graciousness and for the village that helped me to raise my children with few incidents =) Now it is time to take a deep breath and move to a place that we can afford (there is that song again ♫)

I am also a bit down about this make over challenge, for 5 weeks I have worked out and eaten well to stay the same weight, thats right I gained the 2 pounds and am right back where I started from....damn!! Again I feel torn as I do feel better & less stressed, I am sleeping better and have more energy than I have had in a long time....I should be grateful but somehow the scale has become the sign of success and each day I struggle to overcome it and be happy with a healthy outcome. I am committed to continue so if you see me failing please feel free to kick my sorry behind.

Now for the moment of nostalgia....27 years ago my beautiful blue eyed baby boy was born. He entered the world very quickly and made me the envy of the other moms. I loved him from the very first moment, he was the most amazing baby , happy & content and slept through the night by the time he was 3 weeks old (scared the crap out of me the first time). Today he is a man who has overcome much hardship and I am very proud of the person he has become!! I love you Josh and can hardly believe how quickly those precious moments turned to years. Happy Birthday Baby!!!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Clapton....need I say more?

Last night, we watched a legend....Slowfingers, an ironic nickname to be sure, was amazing and we could not help but be transfixed!! If you know me, you know that I love Eric Clapton, and my son borders on worshipping him so the almost front row seats that we occupied made the night one we will not forget! His music is so sharp and crisp....I have seen a lot of shows in my day but none of them compare to Clapton, his old rug, incredibly talented 4 piece band and 2 backup singers! He is so good that he does not need all the fan fare of some of the other concerts I have been to....he is still the best show ever!! At the end of March he will be 67 years old and there is no way you could tell that by his performance...*sigh*...

Well I could go on about him forever...but I won't....I want to do a quick update on my Makeover Challenge before we head out to Surrey for the day. Finally this week I lost a bit of weight...after a month of working out and watching what I was eating I had a bit of a breakthrough. As you know the first 3 weeks were frustrating me, this week I lost 2.6 pounds and 7.5 inches!! I did not think I would be so excited by a couple of pounds but the inches somehow made is seem like more of an accomplishment. I am committed to a lifestyle change and will work at hopefully loosing some more weight!!

Now it is off to Surrey to finish Jordans tattoo...can't wait to see it done!! Have a good weekend everyone!!!

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Finally went on a cruise...

Well not a real cruise but the emotion of almost dying was pretty intense....guess I should start at the beginning. As you all know (well both of you), I am involved in a Make Over Challenge and spent this weekend at a seminar with 19 of my new friends.

First let me share my some frustration about this challenge. I have been at the gym 5 days a week for the last 3 weeks and have lost .6 of a pound...I do not know why this is but it sucks! Some of the other girls are at 20 pounds...some not much more than I but I very quickly discovered that this is not all about the weight. I feel GREAT! I am eating well, taking supplements and trying to pay attention to more sleep and my stress levels. I must admit that I have more energy (which is a good thing with my schedule), I can walk up stairs without sounding like 'Puff the Magic Dragon', I only wear my knee brace for half a day (due to stronger muscles) and I have lost a total of 4 inches! I guess it is not all frustrating huh!!

The surprise of the weekend was this soul searching seminar. Now I have done some of this type of thing before, I have helped lead them and seen the reaction and tears that follow yet I was surprised! We spent a lot of time looking at our past, our disappointments and our hurts...I thought I had dealt with most of them but was caught off guard by some of the emotions that surfaced through this exercise. Although I am not sure I even want to print this, it may prove helpful. I am still angry at the many hardships of my life (even though some of them are of my own making), I am still hurt by some of the incidents in my childhood (I cant go farther than that yet) and I am super pissed at Gary, I am angry that I live financially insecure, that I am alone and that he will not sign the papers to give me closure.....these are all things I knew, things I have spent time working on. The shocker for me, what surprised me the most was my lack of confidence!! Yup I said it, I am not very confident in any of my abilities, in fact I am not sure I even have any. Oh I know I do certain things well but I feel I have no real talent, there is not really anything that I am gifted in, not particularly smart...I am just an unexciting common person. We were trying to write a personal mission statement and it was very difficult for me to do. Funny how our perceptions about ourselves affect our everyday thinking. I am not sure what to do about it at this point but I know I have to address it, pray about it and come up with a way to change it.

I am off to the gym now so I cant get into it more than that....but I will, and I hope that you will not be bored by my newest journey. I guess I will have to tell you about the cruise another day, but it was on this make believe cruise with 4 new friends that I discovered something quite disturbing about was also because of these new friends that I intend to do something about it!!!

Monday, February 14, 2011

The past 10 days...

10 days have passed, 10 days of working out and eating right...10 days of looking for a house to move to...10 days of having no luck in any of these things...10 days of wondering....

Lets start with the 'new' lifestyle...I have been working out 5 days a week, watching what I eat and taking my far I have not noticed a change, gained a few pounds actually, now that my friends is a bit of a kick in the pants...I will admit to a bit of disappointment however I am still committed to continuing on this journey. I do think that I am feeling better although the stress of the last few months has made it difficult to notice.

The other hard part is the realization that we are going to have to move into a small place that is probably situated in a neighborhood that I am not thrilled with. This is a very hard thing for me to deal with...I am surprised by the feelings that I am having...not quite ready to downsize and it makes it apparent that the dream is definitely gone. I now that it is stupid but I am finding that I am grieving the loss of being comfortable in my old age, you know the one...sitting with the one you love on the porch waiting for the grandkids to arrive and bake cookies...a little house with the mortgage almost paid off and the occasional trip to someplace tropical in the winter...and for the record it makes me mad!

Now please don't get me wrong, I love most things about my life....I could live without the financial hardship but I love my kids and adore my handsome grandson!! I am fortunate enough to also have an adopted granddaughter who is cute as can be. I have a job I love (albeit a bit stressful these days) and some of the most amazing friends anyone could have....I still sometimes long for a life that is not quite so difficult.

So as hard as some of it is, as much as some days throwing in the towel seems like a good plan I intend to go on with the new lifestyle, I plan to look for a home that Jordan & I can be comfortable in and I plan to continue to trust that God will provide..

He that endureth to the end shall be saved.
--Matthew 10:22 I shall endure =)

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Feeling a bit down today...

So if I am journaling my journey, then I guess I need to take the good with the bad...this week has been hard. First I am very emotional and although I am eating properly and taking all the recommended vitamins I am still feeling a bit more blue than normal. At the weigh in I had lost a whole whopping ounce...that totally sucks as I have jewellery that weighs more than that!! I then realized I had been driving without insurance...unbelievable I know, cannot fathom how I managed to forget that. Surprise!! I needed air care too so that means that I had to pick up a permit before I could even get new insurance. After that was all cleared up, I was thrilled to find a letter from my landlord...lets just say it is not good and if you know a place to live I happen to know someone who is looking (unfortunately she cannot afford much).

So much stress and I do not know how to eliveate it....I am a very tired lady, tired of making decisions, tired of paying bills, tired of not being able to pay bills, tired of stress and tired of not being able to make my life work. It sucks and I feel very done.

OK now that the rant is over, I know that I will be fine...I do not enjoy being a needy wimp and God has never let me down. I am very fortunate to have wonderful friends, one of whom reminded me tonight that Jesus is my best friend and He already has a plan. I am grateful for that assurance, I will go to bed, try to sleep and wake up tomorrow to come up with a plan.

God is more than big enough to handle my little life....

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

It has begun!!

Well the challenge has begun! This means a few lifestyle changes that I may or may not be ready to deal with however for better or worse I am in...I am being measured, weighed, monitored and kept accountable. I am not finding some of the changes easy however I will continue to do what I need to in hopes of regaining some health. The hardest part right now is eating breakfast...well drinking it actually, I have been doing the protein thing in the morning since food that early often makes me feel sick. I am also on a 5 day a week exercise body is somewhat protesting =)

Upon looking a some 'biofeedback' it has been noted that my thyroid is in distress, protein absorption is low and vitamin B level is almost non existant...hmmm...could this be from the inordinate amounts of stress my life holds...yes, yes I think it could be. The question is what to do about these deficientcies....the first thing is rest, eat well and do the stinkin' exercise...yes I am a bit bitter, the exercise makes me sweat!! Oh well it will all be worth it if I can start to feel better and have a higher energy level...guess it is time to see where this journey will take me.

Sunday, January 30, 2011

Makeover What?!?!?

Well I guess I need to journal this new challenge...

After writing the last post I went through a moment or two of dawned on me that I was no longer a mommy, yes always a mom but after 15 years I had done what I set out to do. I have raised my children to adulthood, they like me and I love them, it has been a successful journey that I am proud of but now it changes...I do not know what to do with that change. Up until now my life, my job, my choices have all centered around my kids. I would do it the same if I had the choice but now they have adult lives of their own and it is time to look at what I need to do for me....the thought is a wee bit scary. Anyway I digress, as I sat wondering what to do next I saw a facebook ad for a friends gym that was having a contest...a full makeover and in a moment of weakness I thought 'why not??' Image now my surprise when I made the top 20 which includes a 4 month gym membership and weight loss challenge! I am choosing to embrace it, it is time to make life a bit different and find some ways to lower stress levels while doing something for me so I am going for it!!

Along with the physical part of this challenge it is time to start dealing with some of the leftover emotional baggage that can plague me...I knew the day would come but I had other matters to take care of first and only had the energy for one thing at a time...I now find myself in a position where I am unable to push it off any longer...damn! I have no idea where this journey will take me, I am not sure if I am ready for it, I know I must move through it. This is one of the many times that I am grateful for my faith, I know this journey will have difficult moments, moments of pain and definite grief...I also know that God will sustain me, carry me and protect me throughout it.

"Moses answered the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still.” "
~Exodus 14:13-14

Monday, January 24, 2011

A life of privilege!!

Wow the last week has been a whirlwind of for me is always busy but this week has been full of occasions that are worthy of documenting.

The week started out fairly normal, I finally felt as though I was getting ahead of the game at work. The last few months have been pretty stressful with our new system and it feels good to be getting a bit of a jump on it!! Tuesday was our monthly board meeting for Gallery 7, we looked forward to opening week of Tuesdays with Morrie, and of course more planning for the 2011 Gala. Wednesday was spent getting a baby cuddle from Hudson and catching up with my good friend Kim. I love these little visits and feel privileged to be able to continue this friendship outside of work. Then it was off to my token night shift. Once home, I spent the evening trying to finalize the graphics for G7 and finally got off to bed at 12:45.....the phone rang about 2:30 am....

Thursday was Aurora Noelle's birthday...I was privileged to be there to welcome here into the world ..I arrived at the hospital sometime after 4 (the times are a bit blurry) and joked that I had an 8am appointment so she had until 7:30, this of course was directed at the bulging tummy I have talked to for months...the midwife gave me a dirty look but such is life! The little muffin, with the help of her mommy listened quite well and made her appearance at 7:35 am. Upon looking at her perfect little face I realized it had taken less than a moment for me to fall in love again!! Then it was off to work, I made it there at 8:07 am, only a few minutes late for my meeting...her first day in the world and already quite considerate :)

Friday was opening night for Gallery 7 which included making a reception of hot hor d'oeveres and punch for 250 was successful and I was tired!!

Saturday was errands, then off to the theatre to do box office and then off to Finnegans. Recently I reconnected with my best friend from elementary school, her and her family were so important to me....I made some silly choices and our paths grew apart and then through this blog...go figure...she contacted me and I am so glad she did! Her brother in law has been diagnosed with melanoma and she asked if I would join her at a fundraiser...again I found myself feeling privileged!!

Sunday Jordan needed to be at church by 8 am so he could practice for worship...watching him play as the church worshipped again make me feel an overwhelming sense of privilege...God has been so gracious. Once home, I was off to Chilliwack with my very very good friend Cheryl, we simply needed to connect so with coffee in hand we left in search of the Bookman...we were able to catch up and I again thought how privileged I am to have such good friends who love me...

There are two themes this week...the most important is that God is gracious and kind, He has given me an incredible life of privilege. Thank you Lord for the people who love me, the people that I love and the extreme joy it gives me to be surrounded by them....the other theme, well I am tired!!!

Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Happy New Year?!?

Amazing that it has arrived so quickly. This past year has had a number of changes and I can not help but wonder what will be next. Some of them I am sure to enjoy, others I am not so sure of.

This is the year that my youngest child will start is hard to believe that time has passed so quickly, I am proud of the man he has become in spite of some of the challenges he has faced. His determination and discipline are a constant source of wonder...Sweetie you Rock!

This is the year that my oldest child has found the place he feels comfortable and fits in...Josh was just awarded a two year contract with BP Oil, a great opportunity for the future. It does my heart good to see that he has overcome so much strife in his life...Way to go Darlin, I am so proud of you!!

This is the year that my little girl has persevered and found a job she really loves....Tif is working at a specialist office at VGH. This job proves her training paid off and she has what it takes and the sacrifices she has made to be a good mom at a young age are paying off, never cease to amaze me baby girl and I am proud of what you have done!!

This is the year that I feel for the first time that my job as a mom is complete....yes I will always be their mom, I will always worry, I will always love them more than life, I will always want to spend time with them, they will always amuse me and make me proud....but today I feel like I have done my job and they will be OK, they will make their own choices and know that I will always be there if they need me....

That makes this the first year that I am not defined by my children, the first year that I will need to think about me instead of them, the first year that I will have to examine what the rest of my life, the first year that I have some time to examine the things I have and haven't done...

I start this year knowing that I am blessed....blessed by my children, my grandchild, my loved ones & my friends...blessed by a God who loves me deeply and though I have made many poor choices He has still given me much. Life has not been did not need to be, life has been full and I am I choose to start the year by ignoring may be wrong and dwelling on those things with which I know I am blessed!!