Monday, December 31, 2007

farewell 2007

I am so happy....I am estatic. I got this picture on my blog all by myself. I am learning, slowly but surely how to manuever on this machine.

This picture was taken Saturday night at Mark and Amanda's house. These little boys were fighting to get away. Both were sick and a little cranky.

We got home to Tybee at about 3:30 this afternoon after a wonderful weeklong frenzy of Christmas with our families. Bubba managed to remove all of the peanuts that Robbie gave him from their shells and into a zip lock bag. He is very pleased.

The year is almost over as I write this, my last blog of 2007. It has been a very difficult year for me, but probably my most rewarding in regards to spiritual growth. God has manifested Himself to me in so many ways. I have come to crave His word daily to merely survive.

God added to and took away from our family this year.

Eli and Harry arrived with great joy. We marvel at God's handiwork in the birth of these new lives.

Death came and visited us twice in 6 weeks with the passing of our mothers. The same is not to be feared because I was there when the angels took my mom to be with the Lord. My hand laid gently on her neck as I felt the beat of her heart slowly recede. There was no fear, only peace.

The grace of God got us through as He promised it would. It is truly amazing to feel God's presence working within you. There is no substitute.......His spirit is either in you or it is not. His Spirit is comfort, it is peace, it is an immense sense of well-being when the things of the world are falling apart around you.

Acts13:52 "And the disciples were continually filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit."

To everyone's house that we entered, thank you for the hospitality. You all are what makes life so special. Laughing, talking, eating together, sharing our lives....what a blessing!

God has given us each other to pilgrim along together to the promised land. We bear each other's burdens and we share each other's joy. We are all truly blessed.

Farewell 2007.......

Sunday, December 30, 2007

that we may ponder

The fire is still burning and the tree is still lit here at the Cleland home. It was good to be back in Georgia today after a wonderful Christmas trip to be with our children and grandchildren.

God is so gracious to give us traveling mercy for all of the time we spend on the road.

Tonight we will go out to celebrate the coming of the new year a little bit early. In many ways it is hard to believe that this year has much has happened.

We left a very sick little boy in Louisville this morning. Eli , bless his heart, is really struggling to get over an ear infection. I always told Amanda that I could tell when she was sick by looking at her eyes. Eli's eyes told just how bad he felt. I hope he is better this evening.

Jake is getting over his tonsillitis and was delightful to be with. Mark has a bad case of bronchitis, but he arose early this morning to fix waffles for us.

Amanda and Mark did get to go out to eat by themselves last night, but by the time they had administered all of the medical treatments, I doubt how much they were able to enjoy their meal. Oh, I remember those days in the dead of winter when it seemed as if our little ones would never get well.

We'll be praying for you guys!

Tomorrow we will leave to go home to Savannah. I hear it's going to be cold down there for a few days. That's okay......I'm looking forward to resting and doing nothing for a while.

Luke 2:18 "But Mary kept all of these things and pondered them in her heart."

Oh what wonderful things Mary had in her heart after the birth of our Savior Jesus Christ......this tiny little Son that God entrusted to her keeping.

Oh that we too would keep all of these "Christmas things" and ponder them in our hearts that we may know joy all through the coming months.

To God be the Glory great things he hath done.

Friday, December 28, 2007

here we are again

Thanks to David I am able to publish another photo on my blog.

Here we are just a little while ago. Lucy was not particullarly interested in doing this shoot as you can probably tell.

No snowman.....just too cold out. We napped instead. Bubba made chili for dinner and we are doing a chocolate fondue tonight thanks to a wonderful gift from Amanda and Mark. We are using Frankie and Sally's new serving plate and Robbie and Mary Ann's coffee and sugar cookie gift. Wish all of you could join us for this snowy evening treat.

We are leaving in the morning to return to Louisville and then on to Atlanta on Sunday. We regret that we were not able to see the folks in Green Bay.......that would have make it all complete.

Until tomorrow....c

it's snowing!

My wish for a "white Christmas" came true, but our trip to Green Bay got cancelled.

We started realizing last night that it was not going to happen.....the trek through the snow would be too treacherous for us to attempt with the little ones.

It has been snowing steadily since 8:00am and is to continue until 5:00pm. We already have a "winter wonderland"..........trees and shrubs are bent low with heavy white snow on their branches.

What an amazing phenominum snow is:

renderering everything that was brown and ugly beautiful again

Job 38:22 "Have you entered the storehouses of the snow?

Does this verse indicate that there is a place where God keeps the snow until He gets ready to allow it's beauty to overtake our world?

Thank you God for the awesomeness of a world gone white if only just for a little while.

Psalm 51:7 "Wash me and I shall be whiter than snow".........a sinner's cry to God for forgivesness. What a clear picture a snowy day presents to a terrible sinner such as I.

Later on, when Lucy gets up from her nap, we are going to put her in her bright red snowsuit and boots and build a snowman. What fun! Right know she is having a hard time going to sleep because of all of the excitement.

Maybe in a little while there will be some pictures on my blog again......

From cathy in her delight of being caught up in a snowstorm.

Thursday, December 27, 2007

christmas all over again

It is 10:12am here in Arlington Heights and we just finished the first round of Christmas morning. It was quite an "opening" event. David and Erika received a digital camcorder to record these precious children.....we have it (the camera) charging now.

Our trip to Chicago was deamed "mr. toad's wild ride." Doug and Mike's 8:00pm flight to Israel was cancelled and they were put on a 5:20 flight instead. We had to gulp down our delicious lunch and hit the road running.

When we encountered traffic backed up for miles on I65, Doug (who was driving) spun around in the median to backtrack and take the backroads to was an interesting day to say the least. We didn't hear anymore from them so we assume they made their flight.

I needed so badly to stop at a restroom, but didn't dare mention it. After we dropped them off Bubba and I headed straight for McDonalds. Oh what a relief it was!

Of course when we arrived at David's we headed straight for Lou Manate's pizzeria (I crave this pizza). Somehow, while we were waiting, Lucy's hand got pulled out of joint, and she wailed the whole time we ate. Thankfully, it was so noisy that nobody around us could even hear her sobs.

As we were making plans to take her to the emergency room, I started putting on her coat. I took her injured hand in mine to gently place it in the sleeve when I felt the joint pop back into place. She stopped crying immediately and the crisis was over.

Everyone is now calling me the "healer."

We are expecting four inches of snow tomorrow. My "white Christmas" wish may come true after all...........we are hoping that we will be able to go on to Green Bay. We will need to see what the weather will be doing "up north" before we go.

Continuing this never-ending and my thoughts are with you...Cathy

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

the morning after

I heard him very early. He was crying and whimpering and all out of sorts.

Nothing like yesterday morning. Jake seems like he's getting sick. Eli already has a bad cough.

Christmas is over, but that's was a wonderful day.

Today we leave for Chicago and tomorrow morning we will have Christmas all over again with David and Erika and Lucy and Harry. A week of Christmas is fine with me.

We will leave at 10:00am and drive to Indianapolis where we will have lunch with the Bookmans. We are driving Doug and Mike to O'Hare to catch a flight to Israel. Lord willing we will arrive at the Cleland home around 5:00pm...

I am overwhelmed with thankfulness and joy.............may the spirit of Christmas abide with us all through the year.

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

two little boys on christmas day

It started early and it ended well.

Two little boys in footed pajamas seeing what Santa brought for the first time.......looks of wonder on their faces as they realized that this was no ordinary morning.

A tall tower of blocks with all of his favorite characters, a tool set including a drill that really works, Mickey's binoculars that see "far off" and "close by," a beautiful stuffed "Nemo" among many other things.

Mark was home by ten (from work at UPS) and then the adults had their time..................Amanda was getting impatient as she has always wanted to be the center of attention on Christmas morning. She did get her time in the spotlight.

We all took an afternoon nap which was very needed. Mark cooked steaks for dinner which were marvelous and then we started opening presents again........everything from our families.

It was a very different Christmas as we did not leave the house all day. This has never before happened to me in my whole life. I stayed in my night clothes until two.

What a happy day we had...what a joy to see these two little boys love and enjoy their family. What a wonder they are as they learn and grow and experience new things.

They are asleep now.....they were exhausted in a good way. I wonder what they were thinking about before their dreams took over?

When Jake says "grammy" I melt as I do when anyone who loves me says my name.

Christmas is love.

God loves us and gave us the gift of eternal life through His son Jesus Christ.

Love from Cathy on Christmas night......

Monday, December 24, 2007

time to play santa

Greetings from Louisville on Christmas Eve......we arrived about 4:00PM after a 7+ hour trip from Atlanta. All went very well and we are looking forward to Christmas morning. It is cold, but I have not seen any snow yet.

Our time with the "other" Cleland's was wonderful. We spent yesterday afternoon talking and enjoying a warm, crackling fire. Their house was decorated beautifully, there was hot cider on the stove, and goodies to nibble on.

Last night we all dressed up and went to the candlelight service at their church. It was elegant and beautiful............Robbie is a wonderful pastor and speaker and his messages are always so well done. Of course, to hear Mary Ann play the lovely Christmas music on the piano is a joy in itself.

After the service we went out to dine in an elegant restaurant and returned home to open our presents. This morning Mary Ann made homemade waffles for our breakfast and Robbie made an early morning fire.

I say all of this to say, thank you for sharing your gift of hospitality with us. It is truly a joy to be in your home.

Now we have to play "Santa." Our goal is to thrill but not overwhelm

Mark and Amanda's main goal is to teach them about God's "indescribable gift," Jesus Christ.

We'll be up early I'm sure!

Merry Christmas with love...Cathy

Saturday, December 22, 2007

a white christmas maybe?

Tomorrow we leave for our Christmas trip. Normally we do Christmas here in Savannah, but this year has been anything but normal.

I don't like routine anyway. I like for life to be and different things happening all the time. Things that broaden your mind and especially your heart.

We are retracing the route of our trip in Novemeber.............Atlanta, Louisville, Chicago, and Green Bay. The further north we go the more hopeful I am of finding a "white Christmas."

In fact, I'm looking forward to being in everyone's lovely decorated homes this year as I was not allowed to put up a tree or any decorations because of our move and this trip. I have surely missed most of all my live, sweet smelling tree and all of the lights. Maybe next year!

Strangely, though, my heart is closer to Christmas than ever before, and I am estatic to soon be with those I love.

We're off to see Daddy and Aunt Dottie.......and to Frankie and Sally's house tonight to have shrimp and crab legs.

The "joy" of Christmas is in the heart. It is in loving and being loved, it is in giving to others.
It is the "peace" that is in your heart because you "are right again with God" because of Jesus Christ, our Lord and Savior.

"Praise be to God for His indescribable gift."

Friday, December 21, 2007

for estelle

Today is Estelle's birthday. Estelle is Bubba's sister and my sister in law.

I won't say how old she is because that doesn't really matter.

What matters is for her to know that we love and appreciate her.

Sometimes in all of the hustle and bustle of everything we forget to say those kinds of things.

Thank you estelle:

for never forgeting an important date in our lives
for keeping up with everybody
for loving us in spite of ourselves
for what you do for others
for loving our babies
for kind words of encouragement
for overlooking our many faults
for your servant's heart

This is one of my favorite verses and when I read it I think of you.......

"And do not neglect doing good and sharing, for with such sacrifice God is pleased."
Hebrews 13:16

We will celebrate at Longhorn tonight and then on to the Patterson home for dessert.

God bless you dear one as you start on your next year....

Thursday, December 20, 2007

a day in the life

It was red and it had ketchup on it. He had gotten used to wearing it and was functioning very well. Jake's cast had become a permanent fixture around the house.

Yesterday Mark took Jake to get a new cast....a little bit tighter since the swelling had gone down. It was also below the elbow rather than over. Happy days have come again......the doctor said the break was healing so well that the cast may come off completely two weeks early.

Hold that thought....

Eli is having a little problem with his sitting up, pulling up, standing up ability. His doctor suggested that a therapist come by the house to evaluate the little guy. That happened today.

Jake was in his room when this lady doctor appeared. In a little while he wandered out to where Amanda, Eli, and the doctor were chatting about Eli's condition.

Well.....he thought that the doctor was his grammy. He started calling my name over and over and putting on his welcoming show for this lady. At one point he started playing with some balls. As he threw the ball across the room the cast came off and went flying through the air finally to land with a loud thump.

By this time Eli is crying, the doctor is trying to calm Eli and Jake, Jake's broken arm is flopping in the breeze, and Amanda has placed an hysterical call to the doctor. In a matter of minutes all hell had broken loose.

Mark was called to come from work to take Jake back to the doctor for his third cast. As Jake is being carried away, he's crying for his grammy to come with.

Eli will have to be checked out later...................nothing much came of the visit today.

A day in the life of a house filled with babies.

I wrote another post sure to scroll down and read.

waiting at the window

David and Erika's house in Arlington Heights has a big picture window looking out to the front. It is very easy to see anyone coming to their front door.

On Saturday for some reason Lucy got it in her mind I was coming to her house that day. David said she spent about 15 minutes standing on the sofa looking out of the window for her "grammy."

Remember the "Homer" shoes that caused Bubba to fall down the stairs when we were last at their house? Well Erika came down in them over the weekend and Lucy said "gran - di - daddy." In her mind those were Bubba's slippers. So "where's granddaddy."

Knowing that a little two year old remembers us and is looking forward to our arrival makes it easier to be so far away.

I don't know little Harry very well yet.....we are just getting ourselves acquainted. I hear he's smiling now and that will be something to see.

Oh, by the way, Erika wore the "Homers" down to the basement and fell up the stairs coming back. Hopefully those slippers will not even appear this time around.

Lucy, keep up your watch.....we'll by driving up to your house very soon. We'll look for you in the window.

Merry's all joy!!!!

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

to be led by a star

Matthew in his gospel gives the account of the wise men or magi that sought the Messiah at His birth.....Matthew 2: 1 - 12.

To me this brief vignette of the wise men is nothing short of amazing. We aren't given a lot of information, but we know that:

they came from the east
they were scholars
they studied astrology and astronomy
they incensed King Herod to multiple murders by suggesting that there may be another king
they followed the star in the east to where Jesus was
they rejoiced exceedingly with great joy
they fell down and worshipped the child Jesus
they presented to Him gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh
God warned them in a dream not to return to Herod
the magi left for their own country by another way
they were never mentioned again

We do not know how many wise men there were and we are very certain that Jesus was no longer an infant in a manger when they appeared to visit Him.

What is so intriguing is, what made these men seek Christ?

What made them leave the dark world of the occult and set out on a long journey following a star?

What makes any of us seek Him?

No mere man is going to wake up one day and decide that he is going to seek God. There is nothing in our sinful nature that would ever want to seek Him...........sin rejects God.

God seeks us out and puts His Spirit in us and gives us the faith to believe what is written in His word.

Romans 10:17 "Faith comes from hearing and hearing by the word of God."

God spoke to these wise men and told them to follow the star in the east and it would lead them to the Messiah. They did what God told them and they found Him just as God said.

Their response: They fell down on the ground and worshipped Him

Our response: We do the same...........there is no other response in the face of God.

That beautiful, bright star led them to the indescribable gift......Jesus Christ.

My oh my they must have had such stories to tell. I'm so glad that God included this passagae in His word.

Monday, December 17, 2007

a stack of pancakes

Nobody would know that a fifteen story building once stood there. Each floor of the building was neatly compressed into a stack about 20 feet high. Bubba and I rode by yesterday afternoon to see how everything looked after the dust had settled around the building implosion.

It is amazing that one can dynamite a building and it all stay so neat. An engineering marvel to say the least.

There is a great view of the Talmedge Bridge now from the Truman Parkway.

My mouse just broke down, poor little fella. I am having to navigate with my fingers which I am not as familiar with. This renders me slow and slower.

A new restaurant:

AJ's on the Back River on Tybee Island
dining on the dock
sun setting in the west
water like glass
mild temperature
romantic music playing in the background
dusk falling quickly
A diving pelican
fresh asparagus
good, good seafood
beach bummy but classy
we want to go back soon..........................

I spent three hours waiting to see my doctor today for fifteen minutes.....there ought to be a law against such torture. I am going to bed even earlier tonight.......the Christmas gifts can get bows tomorrow.

Christmas Eve is one week away. It is all so exciting!!!!!!

he's making a list,
he's checking it twice,
he's gonna find out,
who's naughty or nice.

santa clause is coming to town.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

moma's fudge

A lot of people thought that she made the best fudge in the world. Pure chocolate cocoa and sugar and butter loaded with fresh pecans (pe-cans). It would melt in your mouth.

It was always a big event at our house when mom set about to make a pot of fudge. It was never throw a few ingredients in a bowl and, no. It involved a make-shift double boiler. It took a long time and the result was not always a happy one.

Most of the time moma's fudge turned out perfect, but every now and then it was a complete failure.

I was told that failure was always the result of too much "humidity" in the air.

Now those of us who live in the south are especially familiar with this heavy pool of moisture that hovers in our airspace on a quite regular basis.

too hot? "it's the humidity"
Feeling poorly? "it's the humidity"
bad hair day? "it's the humidity"
Marriage falling apart? "it's the humidity"

"The humidity is the result of all failures in the south according to us.

My moma was ill for a very long time. One night Bub and I made a date with her to make fudge. We wanted to write her receipe and watch her technique.

It was the last time she ever made her fudge and it turned out perfect.

Yesterday Amanda called and asked if I could put my hand on her "Gi's" fudge receipe. She wants to make it for Christmas.

I found what we wrote down that night. I will e-mail a copy to her......but I am skeptical. Moma was a "dump" cook. She worked from her head instead of a written receipe.

I hope we can duplicate moma's fudge, but I don't have much hope.

This made me start to cry...............I'll write more later.

Saturday, December 15, 2007

great was the fall

The earth shook, the booms reverberated in my chest, the building was obliterated in four seconds flat in a cloud of dust.

The building implosion this morning at 8:00 am was far more exciting than I thought it would be.

We left at 7:00 am and got within 200 yards of the building......front row viewing! Large crowds of people started assembling......the excitement grew with each new person that arrived.

A helicopter was circling overhead and there were police cars and ambulances everywhere.

At five minutes before eight all of the sirens started going off and the workers ran over to where we were standing. At exactly 8:00 we heard the first of the booms.......nothing happened and then all of a sudden the middle of the building caved in and then the sides followed.

The cloud of dust looked just like the 9-11 was eerily similar in a startling way.

When it was over everyone started clapping and yelling and saying, "That was awesome."
It was.....I'm glad we saw it in person. We may never see it again, but will always remember the fun and excitement of this particular Saturday morning in December.

Bubba said, "Let's go before we get overcome by that dust cloud." We did....we weren't.

McDonaldson's hosted us for breakfast afterwards. They put egg and cheese on my biscuit again....they just can't get it right.

Please go back to yesterday's blog, "in the fulness of time." I claified an important point on Jesus being born under the law and keeping it for us.

Friday, December 14, 2007

the good news is christmas

This is my third post on this Friday, December 14th.

This is a continuation of my previous post concerning the scripture below.

Galatians 4: 4-5 "But when the fulness of the time came, God sent forth His son, born of a woman, born under the law, in order that He might redeem those who were under the law, that we might receive the adoption as sons."

There is no way that we of the created human race can keep God's perfect law. The requirement of our holy God is that we be perfect but sin changed all of that and God cannot tolerate sin. Sin separates us from God and His good blessings.

Isaiah 59:2 "But your iniquities have made a separation between you and your God, and your sins have hidden His face from you, so that He does not hear."

But the good news is is the advent of Jesus into the world to redeem us who were in a helpless state.

To be redeemed means to be bought back. Jesus paid the price of death for our sin nature and God accepted His sacrifice on our behalf.

I Corinthians 7:23 "You were bought with a price"....... Jesus' shed blood.

Because of the faithfulness of Jesus to God's plan of salvation put in place before the earth was formed, we who believe have come back into God' family as His adopted sons and daughters.
Our relationship with God is restored.

I can't get over is so amazing. It sets my insides ablaze with joy and wonder.

The scriptures that I have used in the last few weeks are meant to glorify God and His Son Jesus Christ and to explain the true meaning of Christmas which is so much more than lights and tinsel and gifts and parties.

Christmas is the very essence of life lived for eternity in the very presence of God.

I close with this incredible verse full of hope and promise.

I Corinthians 2:9 "Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him."

"in the fulness of time"

Galatians 4:4-5 "But when the fulness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, in order that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons."

God decided before the earth was created, before mankind rebelled against the authority of God, to send Jesus into the world to pay by His death the penalty for our sin nature.

Before the foundation of the earth was in place this plan had already been set in motion. God determined the exact time that Jesus would be born and the exact time that He would die and the exact time that He would rise victorious from the grave.

The time that Jesus spent on this earth was not was carefully planned and executed by our loving God.

"When the fulness of time came"........... The word "fulness " in this context means "the completion of a period of time that was beforehand ordained and appointed."

"God sent forth his son"........... The God who created and sustains the earth and who made us was kind enough to send His Son to save us from eternal damnation.

"born of a woman" Jesus was born into this world by His mother, the same as us. The difference being that He was conceived by the Holy Spirit and since the Holy Spirit is also God, Jesus is God's Son.

Matthew 1:18 "Now the birth of Jesus was as follows. When his mother Mary had been betrothed to Joseph, before they came together she was found to be with child by the Holy Spirit."

"born under the law" the law(ten commandments, etc.) exists to show us our sinfulness before our holy God. There is no way that we as sinners can keep God's law. We can try very hard but we will always fail at some point.

Jesus as fully man was "born under the law," but because he was also fully God. He (Jesus) kept the law perfectly. It was not hard for Jesus to keep the whole law of God because He was without sin. God accepts what Jesus did on our behalf and counts it to us as righteousness. (just as if we had keep the whole law ourselves.)

There is only one stipulation from God in all of His grace to us; we must come to God His way, through Jesus:

John 14 :6 Jesus said to him, " I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through me."

God brought our Savior, little baby Jesus, into the whole about 2000 years ago. He is God's gift to us.

Praise be to God for His indescribable gift!

(I'll do vs. 5 later on tonight.)

the big bang

I have always, all of my life, wanted to be a part of a building implosion. It is going to happen tomorrow morning at 8:00 am.

There is nothing left of it but a shell. The insides of the building have been picked clean. It is devoid of any signs of life.

I have been watching it for months. It is on my route to and from town. It is the old 15 story Stubbs eyesore in a city that sits low to the ground. I have no idea how close we will be able to get, probably not very, but it will be something to see and hear I am sure. I will give a report Saturday afternoon.

Bubba was on an overnighter last night, so I immersed myself into wrapping gifts. I got a lot done considering I get so sidetracked with other things...........

getting a drink of water
talking to my aunt on the phone
checking for e-mail
looking in the yellow pages for a shop I want to take Daddy to today
getting a snack
checking what's selling on Amanda's e-bay business
cleaning off the bed so that can get into it

I cannot stick to just one task for very long...sound familiar?

I watched the sun rise over the ocean just now.......breathtaking.

God's gift of a new day.

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

christmas shopping for the little ones

The building is a cavernous warehouse filled with screaming babies. It is a place that I normally avoid at all is the dreaded Toys R Us.

I took a deep breath this afternoon and entered into the wonderful world of children's toys. Most of the time I will leave the toy selections to the younger "Santas," but today I had something in mind.

Little Eli, who is nine months old, just loves "Nemo" of "Finding Nemo" fame. I was searching for something to do with this cute little fish to thrill Eli on Christmas morning. My search was to no avail. No "Nemo" to be found.

I left "The Disney Store" back in DC and do not have a source here in Savannah. If anyone happens to see any "Nemo" stuff that baby Eli would like let me know.

One positive thing did happen in Toys R Us.......I ran into an old, good friend. We laughed that we used to get together to let our kids play and now we are buyings gifts for our grandbabies. Such is life as it moves along.

Speaking of Christmas morning, it has always been such an exciting time at our up early out of the sheer excitement and buildup from days before. I know two little boys who get up early every day.

Jake and Eli we will meet you early Christmas morning at that amazing tree that suddenly appeared in your living room if God is willing.

Until then, I'll be making merry in my heart.

Tuesday, December 11, 2007

a diamond tiara

It's in a big, very old house on the east end of Broughton Street. The place where I get my hair cut intrigues me. The old staircase reminds me of my grandmother's house on Habersham St.......the one with the shiny, waxed bannister I would slid down when I was a child.

The windows are floor to ceiling and they had them open today with the curtains blowing in the breeze. There is a fireplace in every room. This house has really not been restored, it's kind of "as was" but I love it. I think I would like to live in one of these houses, but I just don't know for sure.

All this to say I got my hair cut today. I was going to go shorter, but Jacinda, my hairdresser talked me out of it. A haircut for me consists of not cutting the hair off, but thinning it out.

I wind up with a ton of hair on the floor and my hair is no shorter but it is definitely less hair. So I have been shorn once again.

The sheets that I wrote about earlier, the ones that are falling apart at the seams have now been put on the bed at the condo. I have missed them for a whole week. I can't wait to crawl in tonight. I couldn't bear to part with them much less throw them away. Maybe Bubba won't notice......

We took Aunt Dottie out to lunch today. We all had crab au gratan at Johnny Harris'. Last week she was "Queen" for the week. She had a crown and a sash to wear. She never did appear with those two items on her person after she received them. She doesn't like things like that.

I told her I wouldn't wear a paper crown either, but I would wear a diamond tiara. She agreed wholeheartedly.

She won the big prize in Bingo for the month of November.........a fifteen dollar gift card to Wal-Mart. Estelle spent it for her......lots of chocolate covered peanuts and cans of cashews. A lady named Mary is her most stiff competition..... We'll see what December brings.

"Hark the Herald Angels sing,
Glory to the Newborn King."

Monday, December 10, 2007

the fog persisteth

I walked down by the ocean this afternoon. It was like being somewhere very far place I had ever been before.

The sun was fully shining, but the fog had crept in again from the ocean to cover everything with a veil. The ocean looked like it was a crystal mirror....... the large sea bird a swan.

Everything was slighly out of focus and I could only see about 20 feet ahead of myself.

I heard an airplane over my head but I never did see it........I looked until it's roar was quieted in the distance.

There were lots of little riverlets to step over....streams heading back to sea from the mounds of sand left by the storms. I got my shoes wet, but that's okay.

It is delightful to be on the beach in December. There are no human sounds to disturb the essence of nature....the roar of the waves, the bird calls, the rush of the water being pulled back out to make another wave.

Just before dark the fog pulled back out to the sea and revealed a clear and shining beach and ocean. Several dolphins were putting on a Christmas show for us. They were glad that the curtain had been pulled back.

Things are going well here. Our furniture arrived this morning at 8:00 - intact. Most everything has been unpacked and we are feeling settled in the condo.

I"ll be writing again.......God willing. It is so much my pleasure. c


God planned this day before the earth's foundation was laid.......the day Jesus Christ our Savior would be born.

He planned it to be one of the most extraordinary days in the history of the earth that He would soon speak into being. It was a day most profound, but all but a few people missed it's significance.....just like today.

A tiny little baby would be born in the city of Bethlehem. He would be called the Son of God, Immanuel, God with us.

"Matthew 1:23 "Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and shall bear a Son: and they shall call His name Immanuel," which translated means, "God With US."

Even before Adam sinned in the Garden of Eden, the plan for Jesus to be born into this world was already complete.

He was a fully human man, but He was no ordinary man.....He was also God. He would never sin, and because of this our Holy God could accept His sacrifice on our behalf.

Yes, He was born to die.

What happened at the cross was planned in eternity past as well.

The cross was not a tragedy, it is a victory. Satan was defeated and we are reconciled to our Holy God.

The tiny baby in the manger so long ago was the Son of God who did for us what we could never do for ourselves (make ourselves right with God).

Let this be the reason we celebrate....

Saturday, December 8, 2007

in a fog.....

Hi everybody...I'm still here.

It seems as if I have gotten myself into a fog literally and physically.

Tybee is covered with a "pea soup" fog..... A bright, sun-shinny day is enveloped within minutes and becomes damp, dreary, and cold.

We can hear the big ships blowing their foghorns, but we cannot see them making their way in and out of the river. How lonely it must be out there on the ocean on a night like this.

I have tried to write two other times today. Nothing would come so I gave up.

I think the move and the trip finally hit me. I slept a good while this afternoon.......I am feeling better but will go back to bed soon.

Thank you all for reading and holding me accountable.

Maybe tomorrow this island and I will emerge from the fog.........until then, I sleep.....c

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

keep moving

Wow! The work doesn't stop when you reach your destination. There is so much to be done with all of the "stuff" that was packed up and marked "condo." I have worked all day (almost) and it doesn't even look like I've accomplished a thing.

I set my Bose cd player up first thing so that my work would be more pleasurable, and I did crash at 2:11 for a nap, but for the most part it's been today.

Most mornings I turn on Fox to find out what's going on. Last week they did a segment about "sitting down." You may have seen it too. Well, it seems as if all calorie burning stops when we sit down......when the "buttocks" hit the sofa it's all over.

Yesterday was a wash for me as I sat down for 8 hours straight. Plus I had a Chick-fil-a chocolate milkshake for the road. I did do a lot of heavy lifting unloading all of the boxes and bags from the car when I got here but I doubt "that" even burned up that milkshake which I knew I shouldn't have gotten but did anyway.

Are you familar with this lame reasoning? O poor me....I'm on this long trip and I deserve this milkshake. It will help me feel better. Well it didn' made me feel bloated and slightly nauseated all afternoon.

They said that the key to keep from gaining weight is to keep moving.

Take the stairs instead of the elevator (I do)
Park far away from the door of the market (I do)
pass up the chocolate milkshake (most of the time)
Stop taking naps in the afternoon (forget it)

I'm getting my bike out of storage tomorrow...the weather here is delightful. I'll be pedaling around the island again for my part.

until later.....c

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

signing in from tybee beach

It was a little after 4:00 pm when I crossed the beautiful Talmadge Bridge into Georgia and Savannah. It is a lovely view every time.

I kept thinking all afternoon that I have come full circle. We left Savannah in 1989........that was eighteen years ago, and today I came back. So many things have changed in those years away
........I come back completely changed from the person I was when I left.

It has been an incredible time of growth, opportunity, new friends, travel, weddings, grandbabies, sickness, health, death, intense hurt, and incredible times of joy and love.

The most important thing that happened to me throughout these 18 years gone by is what my God has taught me about Himself, His Son, and His Word. I wouldn't take 100 million dollars for the grace that has been shown to me by Him

Bubba is about six hours behind me. He left at noon after the movers loaded the final item on the eighteen wheeler. It was headed off to Pittsburg, PA, to pick up another load. Who knows when I will see my stuff again.

We are staying in the condo temporarily as Bubba continues to look for a job. Everything will be stored so we can take off in a minute flat if need be.

What a blessing to see that ocean outside my window again. What good protection I had today. My trip was a joy. I made a Christmas tape and a new secular tape and life was good on the road.

Signing in from Tybee Beach.....c

Monday, December 3, 2007

lots of tears and pain

Amanda was giving Eli his breathing treatment last night.....he was hating every minute of it. Mark was playing with Eli trying to distract him from his torture. While all of this was going on, Jake fell off of the sofa. He landed on his hands and knees face down.

He cried for three hours and then he went to bed and to sleep. He woke up early and started crying again. Amanda called this morning to tell me what had happened. Since there were no bruises or blood they decided that he was just sore. No doctor needed this time....nosiree!!

Amanda just called to say that Jake's arm was badly broken at the wrist. He was on his way to get his cast.....bad news for a two year old and his parents. Please pray for him.

The movers will come between 8:30 and 10:00 in the morning. Bubba will stay until they are done, but I will head for Savannah early. We are down to the dregs now and very ready to be done. When we get to Savannah pretty much everything we own will be in storage.

Sometimes we look at each other and say "what are we doing"........but most of the time I like this lifestyle because I am adventuresome and hate routine. It keeps life very interesting.

Question: Why are we ungrateful after all that God has done for us?

For Jake: Be brave little man .....hope you feel better soon.

I'll be signing off in Washington, was a nice stay.......c

Sunday, December 2, 2007

goodbye and goodbye to

apartment #1117
the view of the dc skyline
not having to turn the heat on
cumberland valley
walking to the pentagon fashion center mall
cake love
the shoe shop on U street
the view of the washington monument from anywhere
ole town alexandria
the fresh market
nordstrom across the street
walking to dinner
tyson's 1
hamburger hamlet
riding by the white house hoping to catch a glimpse
the navy exchange
the place where the planes attacked the pentagon
capital hill baptist church
my little kitchen
mark deaver preaching through luke
living on the 11th floor
the walk to church
tyson's 2
the architecture of the row houses
having visitors up
disappointing my children because they love to come
the potomac river
the cherry tress in the spring
watching for the light on top of the capital
being where brit, mort, and fred are
five guys hamburgers
long afternoon naps
watching the planes take off
riding the elevator to get home
feeling like I'm on vacation
what could have been


Saturday, December 1, 2007

the packing goes on

Hi........I hear some of you want to know how the move is coming. Well, we are living amongst a sea of packed boxes. I have managed to get them all neatly arranged up against the walls so that we can at least walk around.

Amanda, we went to "Five guys" today for our last of their good hamburgers. Bubba said that we should open up one of these in Savannah. I said I don't want to work around food for a living. He agreed.

This afternoon I have had a sense of melancholy about me....not that dreaded depression but just sadness. It seems as if we never got to do what we wanted to do while we had the opportunity to be here in the northeast. That's okay. God is good and His way is the best.

The David Cleland family was honored today with a church-wide shower for little Harry. The outpouring of love that was shown is so amazing. We thank God that He has met all of their needs concerning his adoption and necessities through this very generous body of believers.

David called me early to say that Lucy was wearing her new coat and pink boots that we gave her for her birthday......she will be two on Wednesday. When she opened the box she went nuts over the boots. She loves shoes better than anything else. She got that from her grammy.

They got their first major snowfall in Chicago today. We are expecting freezing rain tomorrow. Our trip to church may be a little difficult as we have to walk a ways to get there. I guess I will have to wear my boots.

I really enjoyed writing "Why we need a Savior." I hope you enjoyed reading it.....

Until tomorrow....c

for the third time

The Bible is the story of God's redemptive work on behalf of mankind whom He created through His Son Jesus Christ. The story begins in the book of Genesis and ends with the book of Revelation with Jesus' last words being "Yes, I am coming quickly."

God had it all planned before He set the clock of time in motion.

There would be a way for man to be reconciled to God......but only one way:

John 14:6 "Jesus said to him, I am the way, the truth, and the life, no one comes to the Father but through me."

When you study about God you learn that He is holy.....He cannot tolerate sin of any kind. Therefore when Satan brought sin into the world through Adam and Eve, he polluted the whole human race. Everyone who is born into this world is born with a sin nature.

Psalm 51:5 "Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin my mother conceived me."

God in His lovingkindness allowed His Son Jesus Christ, who is also God, to take our sin upon Himself as payment (atonement) for our sin. This is the miracle of salvation........

Jesus came to this earth as a baby, conceived by the Holy Spirit and born to Mary, fully human and yet fully God. He never sinned (because He is God) and so God accepted His sacrificial death on our behalf.

We who are believers rejoice in God's indescribable gift, Jesus Christ!

To try to come to God on our own would never work. We could not stand before our holy God without experiencing His wrath against our sin. But when we come to God through His son Jesus Christ, God accepts what Jesus did on our behalf and counts us as righteous (perfect) before Him.

This is the answer to why we need a Savior.

Merry Christmas!!!!!!

again, why we need a savior

God existed in eternity past. Before He spoke and made the earth, He already knew that man was going to rebel against Him and sever the relationship that He had planned for them to love Him and enjoy Him forever.

God created the angels before He created the earth. The angels were to do His bidding and minister to His creation.

One of the angels wanted to be equal with God. This angel, who was known as Lucifer, and other angels who joined with him rebelled against God and were kicked out of heaven.

Lucifer is one and the same with the serpent who approached Eve with his cunning lies. He came down to earth to establish himself as the ruler of God's creation. His desire was to destroy the work of God in creation. He thought he had won.

God is omniscient. God knows all things, and His knowledge is always absolute knowledge. It is perfect knowledge, a complete knowledge of everything.

Ephesians 1:4 "According as He hath chosen us in Him before the foundation of the world."

Before the earth was created, God already had His "plan of redemption" for His creation in place.

God the Father, God's Son Jesus Christ and the Holy Spirit all met together in a holy council and at that time God designated His Son Jesus Christ to defeat Satan (Lucifer) and reconcile man back to God.

Just think about this and how it shows God's great love for all who would be brought into existence after the world was created.

I've mentioned this before........before we can understand what Jesus did, we have to know God.

To be continued.............