Thursday, March 30, 2017

Scribbles and Scrambles ~ A Little Midweek Boost

This has been another challenging week. I went in Monday to hear that two of my co-workers had been released from their positions on Friday. Some of their tasks landed squarely on my desk. Jobs
I don't do very often and have only a small amount of practice with, but, I'm grateful to have the added job security. I am very sad for my former co-workers and just shudder at the thought of finding a job in today's climate.  

My kids are all immersed in raising their kids with various trials and struggles and their lives are sometimes just hard and stinky. Raising kids is not for those with week spines or stomachs. Can I just say that? Loving sometimes unlikeable, selfish human beings is rough. It takes a toll. I carry some of my kids feelings with me through life. I pray and I help when I can sometimes feeling that any tiny thing I might do is just not enough to give them real help. 

Then there is just the reality of the physical realm around me. The house needs to be looked after, the laundry done, the hedgehogs need cleaned cages, the dogs need to go out and have play time. We have an empty apartment that is probably rented, but that means painting needs to be performed, and new windows installed and there are just not the hours in a day to do it. Oh and we are trying to beat the annual call from our tax preparer giving us the date and asking us if we are going to be filing an extension yet again. Just once I'd like to drop our info off before he calls us. 

Our church is going through some transitions and changes. And being a leader in a church is taxing. As a leader you get to hear the complaints of the saints and see the inaction of a group of people who should be out there making a difference. And you get to find out the painful things going on in peoples' lives before the poo hits the fan. Loving people and serving them is a burden. 

Life get really heavy sometimes.  This morning I read this article. By Joshua Becker of Becoming Minimalist. He is the guy I ran across who inspired me to get rid of 1,000 things. I love to read his thoughts and the articles he shares every Saturday from resources around the world. Sometimes the articles are ones that inspire me to make a different choice, other times they are food for thought. But they are always valuable. 

Today he posted about the unsung heroes who aren't in the limelight. But they are putting one foot in front of the other on a hard path full of obstacles. They are the ones who are making the world a little better for their small circle.

It reminded me that our attitudes can make or break us. And that we aren't alone when we've attached ourselves to Jesus. It reminded me that little things are valuable and we can keep going and doing life because life is hard but life is glorious, too. So very glorious. Take a look outside on this dreary day and remember that there is a sun up there shining even if you can't see it. Or that God Almighty loves you, even if you can't feel it. Or that life is a gift. Or look inside and do what you need to do today to get back the hope you need to carry on. Take a deep breath in and thank your Creator that you can. Or take a shallow breath and use it to cry out for His mercy yet again. Hang in there, Buddy. The sun is still there, you will see it soon. And God's mercies are new every morning...He doesn't run out of mercy. 

Monday, March 27, 2017

E-Book Sale

For two days. Download Out of the Frying Pan for a buck! 
Michelle had to autograph a copy for a woman who had HIGHLIGHTED favorite passages. She then read her favorite line to Michelle and laughed hysterically while doing so. That. Makes. My. Day! 

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Scribbles and Scrambles ~ Social Misfit

Man. Sometimes I just have to close my eyes and cover my ears. Does what you absorb on social media affect you that way? Of course its not just social media. It is media in general. It is society in general. 

Bad news, sad news, defeating news, all massaged to fit into a sound bite or an agenda. Likely both. 

People being proud to be "right" while trampling and labeling and crushing those who don't agree. Screaming accusations about the intelligence of lack thereof and even about the commenters mother. 

Even simple or sweet stories get the comments. 

My daughter belongs to a mom group of Facebook that has to delete posts and or remove members for being divisive and unkind. Folks are offended greatly by breast-feeding and don't hesitate to share their opinions, others are horrified that someone's kid is in public school. 

Maybe we've always been like that. After all gossip is as old as time. Maybe the problem is that now those who have made snide comments, or passive aggressive assaults have a bigger platform. And for some reason their opinion must be heard by thousands in order to find validation for the unloving, sniveling thoughts dancing through their heads. Christmas-sugar-plum-dreams morphed into festering rotten produce. The Grinch's huge heart shrinking into smaller and meaner than before. The more they find engagement on social media the more maggotized their thoughts get and the more their thoughts appear to be alive through the movement of the decaying process. UGH!

So on this Tuesday, officially a spring day, here are some uplifting moments. Thanks Bored Panda.

Just don't read the comments. 

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Serials and Scenarios ~ Winner of Rafflecopter

My big Rafflecopter event is over. The winner now has the e-card in his possession. 

If this above description does not fit you, well then, you aren't the winner. 

But I think Rafflecopter is fun. So I may just have to do a contest again. 

Congrats, Will. And remember you can buy two copies of my book for under $20.00. Just Sayin!

Wednesday, March 08, 2017

Serials and Scenarios ~ Buy em Books and Buy em Books

I thought I needed to come back around and share some of the places I visited for our Out of the Frying Pan blog tour. 

In case you missed any of them I share parts of pieces of my story and my life at the following places around the world wide web. 

Of course you can get a copy of Out of the Frying Pan at Amazon. 

Without further ado, part two of my blog tour recap.  about my admiration for a young woman doing great things. on what kind of worshipper I want to be.  for my recipe for romance. and the most romantic gesture my husband has ever made.  Official review post. absolutely nothing to do with Out of the Frying Pan, but fun-funny. My love of words. 

Tuesday, March 07, 2017

Scribbles and Scrambles ~ There's a Pony Somewhere In Here

I tend towards optimism. Having been called Pollyanna a time or two, maybe a little too much. My mom has said I get it from my dad. She thinks we both encounter a huge pile of horse poo and start digging because there has got to be a pony in there, right?

Maybe I've been gifted with a little more faith. Where I know Who's in control and that I can trust Him. I can't say I always trust or always feel this. Sometimes I get down in the dumps and cranky and feel sorry for myself, overwhelmed or depressed. But I'm always looking for a glimpse of blue in that gray, murky sky. I can't stay down long. Which is something I'm grateful for. I don't have a long list of grievances that I can stew over or chew like a cud. I generally take things as they come, planning ahead to keep the crazy controlled if I can. And accepting it if I can't. I also don't take myself too seriously. Which makes me terrible at grammar and the annoying details of writing a book. Oh, the trade-offs in life. A comma placement isn't going to make me crazy but I sure know some who'd fall on their sword over grammar.

When I run into other optimists I can't help but just bask in their attitude.  This guy, Adrian Solano is from Venezuela and his first experience with snow, ever, was basically as this was filmed. He trained by roller skiing at home in Venezuela and had never seen snow. He had planned to practice a month or so before the trials on actual snow but the border authorities didn't believe his story so he returned home. He finished dead last. But said the best part was falling because then he could get up again. 

Read his story here. 
(And if you feel really optimistic after reading this...sign up to win the $20.00 Amazon gift card I'm giving away. The rafflecopter link is here. ) 

Thursday, March 02, 2017

Scribbles and Scrambles...V for Victory

I'm excited to announce that after seven or so grueling hours I have put together an adorable play kitchen. 

We've had a borrowed one that gets loads of action. But it had a new house to go to and since our wall was now blank, and Amazon gave me $8.63 off of a purchase, and the new kitchen was adorable retro turquoise, and an 18-month-old chef hangs here and loves it, and scads of visiting cousins might just want to play with it, I pressed submit order. 

It came in a flat box. Very flat. I've lived long enough to know that flat boxes mean lots of assembly. Whew. There were 38 pieces...maybe 39. And then all the supporting screws and bolts and nuts and accessories. I ripped the box open and began tediously putting this together. Note: If you want a play kitchen and you know it will arrive in a flat box, do not, I repeat, do NOT start this project two hours before gifting hour. You will hate yourself. This is not a Christmas Eve project. (Unless you start at 6:00 a.m. that is.)

I did have to enlist Rob's help. For a few things. A) when I exuberantly overtightened a screw on an accessory and heard a crack and suddenly the screw turned real fast I realized I broke the plastic screw housing. Rob came to the rescue with his super glue. Thank goodness the break was behind the cute medallion. B) The HINGES!!!!! I could not get those suckers right! Holy sweet everything that is good and wonderful!!!!! The HINGES!!!!! AUGH!!! So he invested an hour of his life in this activity as well. 

Ironically, I had been thinking I loved the fact that Kidcraft's directions were helpful. Rob did not think so. Apparently, our minds process instructions differently. We both loved that the screws etc were mostly in a bubble packaged box cardboard backing and the letter of the item was on the front and the back. No bags of screws! Once everything was open it turned into a little more complicated mess but it was less overwhelming than 15 bags of screws/nuts/bolts. Rob was so impressed with the quality and workmanship. Every piece of word and screw hole etc was perfectly lined up. The finish is great and it's rock solid. Definitely worth the price. For the record I got it for $112 before the discount. I included a link to it but it looks like the Amazon ones are sold out and it's third party only so definitely look around if you are thinking about getting it. 

It is so cute! 

And it's done! Yay!!!