Friday, December 19, 2008

Our snow adventure

Since we got our first snow last Friday, we've left the house twice for short trips into town.

Yesterday we decided to go into town, but by the time we pulled ourselves together it was too late, so we set our sights on today. We headed out about 11am, and got no further than about 20' from the garage.

After about 30 minutes of pushing and rocking our way down the driveway, we were stuck. And this is after Chris had cleared it yesterday.
So, Chris started up the tractor again, but found that the gearing was frozen. After consulting with the tractor guys in town, and letting it run for an hour, we was able to get it moving, and then he pulled the car back to the turn around area, re cleared the driveway and I drove the car into the garage.
I think we'll stay home today...

Friday, October 31, 2008

The heat is on!

Forgot to update you on the installation of the geothermal system. Chris made it a priority to have the heat on by the time I returned from Wasilla. We have been at a wonderful and comfortable 68` since last Friday. He said when the connected the thermostat the house was at 58`... no wonder I was cold!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

My Wasilla trip

I wrote this to some friends earlier this week, thought I'd share it as a recap with you:

Thank you all for praying for me on this trip. I am still processing and trying to describe this trip - 3 times in the last 24 hours I have heard the chorus from "Say what you need to say" by John Mayer, that has served as an encouragement that I am on the right path, earlier this month I sensed the Lord saying that summer vacation was over, I hope that what we experienced this weekend is the answer to that "heads up".

I say "we" because I went to help Rob. He graciously offered to let me do some of my student teaching, my first time out on Thursday, the Vocal Cord Dysfunction that plagued me two years ago popped up. Rather than be a distraction, I think it created an empathy with the students. Rob took over when it was obvious that I'd reached the end of my voice, and five minutes later my voice was fine. One of the women came up to me and said that she had to tell me how brave I was, it totally brought me to tears, a place I was in most of the weekend. Another woman said she thought it was a spiritual attack, I agreed with her. That was the one and only time I had to deal with VCD. BTW - the Hebraic understanding of "And God said it was good" is better translated "And God looked around and saw that it was functional", He saw that it functioned as He designed it to be.

I stayed with the couple who coordinated the class Thursday and Friday evening. Friday morning I woke with a head cold. They prayed over me and prayed for me all day. The symptoms dried up most of the way but my right eye kept tearing up and I had a bit of sniffles, but nothing like what the morning promised.

There were 33 students in the class, they were hungry. They gave us grace and they showered us with love. Part of the 101 teaches about the dangers of "gold, glory, guys and girls". I totally understand the dangers of letting this go to your head, of taking on a "rock star" attitude.
We were surrounded by servants, we couldn't carry our bags or buy our lunch. I shake my head at it all. Humbling.

I wrote this to a friend earlier and I'll share it with you:
The people were so open, so hungry. I can't tell you who received more love, them from us or us from them. Rob said that it was an unusual 101, but he'd done the majority of the speaking and was fried so I didn't push for why. I'm still trying to process it all. After the class was over, we got to pray with everyone individually, speak words of destiny over them. It was amazing to read peoples mail, to say this is how you feel, but the Lord wants you to know how He sees you and this is a greater reality. One guy was in the Army, I knew that all weekend, but when I prayed for him, I asked him what position he held, he told me he was a Chaplains assistant. When Jeremiah was here last weekend, he told us that a Chaplin isn't allow to carry a weapon because of the Geneva convention. Because of that, there are Chaplin assistants who go everywhere with the Chaplin and protect him. I told him it was really cool, and that he carried a sniper rifle, he corrected me and told me what he carried, but then I realized that what I had understood was that he does carry a spiritual Sniper rifle, and all it's speciality gear, including a high powered scope and flashlight (Jeremiah had told us what a sniper carries). I began to draw for him the spiritual reality of him choosing to lay his life down to protect another that is dimly reflected in the natural, and as I spoke I could see the Holy Spirit witnessing to what I said. That was repeated with every single person. It was heady. Heady to be used like that, to be in that kind of an atmosphere, to see and feel the impact on the people. Heady to see that they had been changed by the head and spiritual knowledge they had received in class, but to see them called and stepping up to something more than they had believed about themselves, because of this impartation.

The family that hosted us served an amazing lunch Sunday after church, where the whole church came around us and prayed for us, for our families and for the work that "we've been called to do". For lunch we had King crab and halibut, not caught by them but caught by friends, as a side note, we snacked on bear summer sausage and had caribou patties and bratwurst for breakfast. But as amazing as that lunch was, the love that was freely showered on us was indescribable and added this special quality to everything. We have new family in Alaska, and I can't wait to visit them again. I was adopted by an Eskimo woman - I now have an Eskimo grandmother!

I was reminded again and in new ways that its all about building relationship. I was encouraged and challenged by Rob's stories. I got to take the 101 again, and was convicted in places I haven't pursued growth. My Admin skills were used as well as my retail experience, both came in handy - Rob's book table sold out. Steve and Steve made sure that there was nothing left, they made it a personal quest. The generosity of the people was stunning. And humbling.

On the plane home I wrote the following in my journal:
I received more than I gave.
I was adopted into families and inherited an Eskimo grandmother.
I received prophecy and unconditional love.
I was the recipient of broadcasting skills, the Fathers power, His love and a mothers milk.
I was reminded that I sit in the midst of the Holy Spirit and I draw my life and nutrition from Him, that I am my Fathers favored daughter, that I am brave and a mighty woman of God. That I will be mother to many.
I flowed in the anointing of God and was reminded how easy it is when it's not about you. I was ruined for a life of anything but this giving of the Lord impartation. I understood why people go to Burning man.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Withdrawal is a change in perspective

In the past few days we've had an abundance of spiritual activity. We've been asked to pray for people, we've received words and just been soaked in a spiritual atmosphere. Thursday I leave for Wasilla and there is an anticipation and an excitement for that time as well.

This morning we had a friend stop by, he had a hip replaced recently and has been on heavy duty drugs for the past 5 months. He's weaning himself off them and is having a bit of a hard time. He asked for prayer, and we were happy to oblige. Later, sitting in the office I realized that part of what I've been feeling for the past day has been "withdrawals" of the spiritual atmosphere we've been surrounded with lately. That may sound strange, but I've heard that science has proven that the endorphins that are released in prayer are also the same ones that are released during sexual intercourse. As I thought about that, it became clear to me that I've missed the intense spiritual atmosphere of the past several days. That understanding brought a fresh perspective, and lifted the lethargy that seemed so consuming.

On a lighter note, we had a friend visit on Friday. I posed the cartoon character question to him. It took him a few moments but he decided he associated Tweety with me. Needless to say I jumped out of my chair at his response, and no he wasn't coached. That was all him. I asked him why he associated Tweety with me. His comment - She always wins. I like that...

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Which cartoon character are you???

Several years back I gave Chris a stuffed Tiger, he thought it was strange but cute. This morning Tiger caught my eye and I remembered why I'd given it to him - he's very Tiger like. Bouncy bouncy bouncy and so much fun!

Seeing Tigger prompted me to ask him which character represented me to him. Without hesitation he said "Tweety bird".

Why?? He said because I flit around, yellow - I'm happy, and most importantly oblivious - in that I have no idea how much power and authority I've been given, that I take for granted the ability to fly.

That hit me anew, not because I hadn't heard it before, but because it tied into my study of Exodus 14.

If you remember, Moses finally gets permission to lead the Israelites out of Egypt to worship God. Pharaoh wakes up, realizes what he's done, gathers his entire army and heads out after them. The Israelites see Pharaoh and his army, take their eyes off of God, manifesting right before their eyes as a cloud by day and a pillar of fire by night, and start whinning to Moses that he's lead them out into the desert to die - living as slaves in Egypt would be preferable to death. From the text (note that this is from the Complete Jewish version, the blue is the text the black are my comments):
[13] Moshe answered the people,
“Stop being so fearful! Remain steady, and you will see how ADONAI is going to save you. He will do it today — today you have seen the Egyptians, but you will never see them again!
[14] ADONAI will do battle for you.
Just calm yourselves down!”
It really struck me that our only responsibility is to calm down, steady ourselves, watch what God will do on our behalf for His glory, and we won't need to worry about the situation again. Then Moses turns to God, and God says
[15] “Why are you crying to me?
In essence, God reminds Moses what he already knows "I have given you the authority and the ability to overcome this obstacle that looks so big in your eyes. Lift up your hand and use it. Take action."
Tell the people of Isra’el to go forward! Advance. [16] Lift your staff, Take up your authority. reach out with your hand over the sea, and divide it in two.The people of Isra’el will advance into the sea on dry ground. You think there are no solutions but there is one, it may seem impossible but it is right before you. Move forward.
[17] As for me, I will make the Egyptians hardhearted; and they will march in after them; thus I will win glory for myself at the expense of Pharaoh and all his army, chariots and cavalry. [18] Then the Egyptians will realize that I am ADONAI, when I have won myself glory at the expense of Pharaoh, his chariots and his cavalry.”
And God follows through with His promise - He shows the Israelites and the Egyptians who is God.

So how does that tie into Tweety??? I was reminded to walk in the power and authority that I have been given. Yet at times that power and authority are so natural to me that I don't realize I have them, or that I am or aren't walking in them. And that has lead to a whole lot more thinking...

Friday, October 17, 2008

Checking in...

It's been awhile since I posted anything. I'm preparing to go to Wasilla AK. A friend of mine is teaching The art of hearing God, the Streams Ministries 101 course and has graciously allowed me to tag along - I volunteered to run his registration and book tables as well as do any grunt work he needed done. About a week later he called and suggested I do some of my student teaching, my last prerequisite before I am certified to teach on my own. So, I've been studying and getting ready for the trip. I fly out this Thursday the 23rd, class will run from 5-9 that eve, 9-9 on Friday and 9-5 on Saturday. Rob will be teaching Sunday morning at a church in Willow then we fly home. I've been amazed that I am not scared or anxious about teaching, I'm looking forward to the experience and to seeing peoples faces light up with new revelation and understanding.

Monday, October 6, 2008

Real or perceived limitations....

Several years ago I was given a plant arrangement, one of those that is beautiful but combines plants that have different temperaments and needs. Eventually I replanted what was still alive and kept three of the plants together, a spider plant, a palm and a fern. Understand, they are in a big pot, and they have grown about 30" above the rim. Here's the thing, the spider plant has been blooming for most of the past two years. And for longer than that it has been sending out babies. It is so prolific that I have no less that three other good sized plants around the house, one of which is in the picture, which are also blooming and having babies, and I've given away about a dozen more. I should also tell you that they all look funny - they aren't "normal" looking spider plants... and I've pulled up all the runners they send out into a plant stake so all the new plants are held high rather than drooping down low.

A friend told me that the reason they are sending out babies is that they are or were root bound at one point.

So driving down the road this weekend, with all the above running through my head, I asked Chris if we'd missed out on spiritual growth by not being in an environment that shared all the same values. His answer surprised me.

He outlined the book In Conquest Born by C.S. Friedman. Short summary: people with physic talents are raised in a caring nurturing environment. The lead character enters the military where she is forced to go beyond the training that was considered the limit back at the training center. She returns to the training center, demands her way and walks through the mental barriers the head of the center erects. At that point she explains to him that for her very survival, she has gone beyond the self-defined limits that the center teaches. With that example, Chris points out that we've been forced to learn and grow in ways that wouldn't have been possible in a "nurturing" environment. And that brought me back to the spider plants. I realized that they are an example as well as a mirror for us; their environment, current/real or past/perceived, has caused them to go into reproduction and flowering mode.

While I can't see our lives as clearly as when I look at the plants, I hope we have been as busy as they have.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

Happy New Year!

Some friends sent this New Years/Shanah Tovah greeting to us today and I am passing it on to you. May this new year be one of joy, laughter, increase and blessings for you and your loved ones.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

My husband...

I was doing a bit of sprucing up today and a picture we framed this summer caught my eye.
It's an original my uncle painted, one of three "test" paintings before he finished the commission he was working on. He was given this large Native American Indian pot, but because it was cracked it wasn't considered valuable. The painting has a vignette scene of Native American life hidden in the pot. I love the piece because it speaks to me about the unfinished life we're living. The brokenness of the pot speaks to me as well - even though it's broken, it is still beautiful and can still contain and tell the story of life.

What struck me about this painting today was that it was only one of the pieces we framed this summer. Most of what we framed were my photography pieces. I remembered Chris' patience as I learned about matting and colors at the frame shop. How he took me to different places to find just the right frames and then how he helped me to frame each piece once we found all the components. As I straightened the picture I was reminded of his great love for me, shown in a 1000 different ways, but most particularly at that moment in the way he has supported me and encouraged me as I have begun delving deeper into photography.

But yet, that is not the full story. He has shown me that encouragement in many ways and in many areas. I have the confidence that I can go out and try something, and succeed or fail, because I know I have his unconditional love and support.

I hope that you experience this level of unconditional love and support.

Friday, September 26, 2008


Bad couple of days for the financials and Wall Street. But beyond it all, Chris and I know we are loved by God and that we love and support each other. So what now??? We regroup, reassess, roll up our sleeves and begin again. As Chris has pointed out, "we are truly blessed". We have friends who have had hip replacements, knee replacements, cancer, failed marriages, are facing bankruptcy and a myriad of other issues. We truly are blessed.
May you be surrounded by many blessings.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

And so it begins...

Work on installing the new geothermal heat pump began today. Seems like it's taken forever to begin the installation process. In late April we went to Pocahontas Arkansas where Chris attended a 2 day training school for Techs on how to install this new system. It really is trick, but don't ask me the particulars, I leave that to the resident expert. What's important to me is that 1. we'll have heat, our old heat pump began going out late last winter, and 2. it's more cost effective. We had friends that put in a similar system and their heating bills were cut in half and they had a consistent temp in the house. In addition, our water heater is now obsolete as the system heats the water without having to pay extra.

Moo and Moose had a blast in all the dirt and Moo loved supervising and herding people and big machines around.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Summer recap...

So I wasn't so good at keeping up the blog over the summer. A lot has happened, and the days flew by. In August we spent a week in Telluride with some dear friends of ours. The highlight was spending time with them, talking, cooking and just hanging out. We took the time to visit Mesa Verde, a place I've always wanted to go.

Chris and I have talked and planned and prayed over our current, and new business plans. More than once.

We reconnected with a couple we met several years ago, had calls from a friend serving in Iraq, and are now planning for both to visit in October. We're planning a get together so our friends can meet our guests. We're contemplating a trip to Alaska with the couple before November.

We've been accepted into the culture of several bars in Monroe and Duvall and have made some great friends. We hope to introduce them to some of our friends.

I entered 3 art shows, participated in the Monroe art walk and entered a photo contest. Chris has been busy researching cameras, he wants to replace what I have with something "better".

I took several classes, began ballet, made progress in editing the mechanical translation of Exodus, and signed up for Fall classes.

We've planned for the future, and dreamed dreams that we wouldn't have considered several years ago. We've grown closer as we've had to discuss business, and recommitted ourselves to each other that boom or bust we are still one.

We've struggled in some places and situations we find ourselves in, but yet are committed to staying till it's time to go, all the while asking what do we need to learn and how can we grow. We don't want to delay our progress.

We've redecorated, gotten carried away with Hero's (and took some friends with us!), gotten over the "puppy" phase with Moo, and learned how independent a dalmation is, and done a great deal of reading, both for business and pleasure.

All in all I am happy, no, content with where I am. Where we are. As I said in yesterday's post, I'm learning to "be". To live in the moment, to enjoy where I'm at, what I'm doing and the company I am with.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

To be or not to be....

Something has been seeping into my brain lately... all my life I have measured myself against the standard of "doing", of accomplishing. Recently, the concept of measuring myself with the standard of "being" rather than "doing" has taken hold. This new standard doesn't require always "being on", making decisions in a split second or always being in motion. This new standard demands a restful pose. Like a seed buried in the ground, on the surface, nothing seems to be happing. But deep underground, massive changes are happening. Some I am aware of, some, like this understanding come a bit at a time, and others are so far beyond my current understanding that I have no idea they are in motion or coming.

So what's next? I don't know. I only know that I need to listen to the new rhythm that has been moving within, to move when I need to move, to stay still when I need to stay still and to not do or accomplish based on my understanding or desires. My desire at the end of this season is for explosive and exponential growth. But yet, that that growth be not of my making or design.

Thursday, September 18, 2008


I began ballet class yesterday, delayed by a week because of that Mac truck I tangled with.

This photo was one I took at a friends rehearsal last year. I am not "stepping up" to toe, just basic ballet.

I truly enjoyed myself, the positions and moves came back easily, but 35 years and body changes left me pleasantly sore today.

Our instructor choreographed our warm up into a dance we are learning. The music is Keb Mo's You don't have to shave your legs for me. Here's a You tube video of the song, were using the 4 minute studio version. I love the rhythm and "freedom" I sense in the instrumentals, then the words just wrap it up with a big happy bow. Enjoy...

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Of birds and butterflies...

On Monday, Chris drove me to the Woodland Park zoo. After being cooped up for several days I was getting antsy, but didn't have the energy to drive myself. Ever since the Flamingo ads appeared this summer I'd been wanting to go and photograph them. One of my fondest memories from our honeymoon is the "World Famous Marching Flamingos" at the Ardastra Gardens, Zoo & Conservation Center, Nassau, Bahamas (

Like many of our preconceived ideas, I was let down when I encountered the flamingos at the zoo. The flamingo's of my memory were a deep coral, the Chilean flamingos at the zoo are paler pink with their under feathers a brighter coral. But I tried not to hold that against them and enjoyed them anyway.

In addition, I had time to take in the butterflies and blossoms exhibit where I got some photos of butterflies. Enjoy this mini trip to these 2 exhibits....

BTW - a friend told me I hadn't posted the ribbons I won at the Fair. I have added that info to the Fair post.

Monday, September 8, 2008

A massage or a mac truck???

Somehow this went to drafts rather than posting... today you get a 2-fer. This was written Sept 8th...

Last Thursday I had a massage.

I went in ready for a nice relaxing, unwind, be pampered massage and came out relaxed, but a bit sore. It wasn't till the next morning that I realized just how sore I was. What was to have relaxed me ended up benching me. I had body flu like symptoms for 2 days and even today, 4 days later, can't breath through my nose and have very little voice. I've slept in hour long chunks, being woken by the pain or by a funny sound, which was me whimpering, moaning or making some other funny sound. And poor Chris! He has his sleep interrupted as well. I must say, I have several "nests" around the house where I have slept, depending on my breathing at the time. I have been reminded how pleasant it is to nap on the deck, listening to the wind move through the trees, the river ever so faintly in the background. I fall asleep quickly and deeply on the deck, only waking when I get too hot in the sun.

I can tell I'm getting better as my sense of humor, along with my energy, is returning. Lesson learned - be more specific requesting a fluff and buff vs a lymph draining massage!

Wednesday, September 3, 2008

The Evergreen State fair

It's been awhile since I've blogged... about the time I began thinking of doing so, my friend reminds me to get busy... thanks Rich.

Picked up my photos from the Evergreen Fair today. Here are the pics and the comments on each.

Long Beach Marina - 2nd place ribbon.
Technical (possible 15 points) 13
Focus 13
Printing 11
Balance/Contrast 13, no clean whites, leans to the blue tint
Design & Composition (possible 20 points) 17 enjoyable composition, horizon slightly tilted to the left
Over all comments (possible 15 points) 13

Ferry pilings - 3rd place ribbon.
Technical (possible 15 points) 13
Focus 13
Printing 12
Balance/Contrast 12 needs darker shadows or better contrast
Design & Composition (possible 20 points) 17
Over all comments (possible 15 points) 13

Glendalach gates - 2nd place ribbon.
Technical (possible 15 points) 14
Focus 13 good, might have moved focus forward abit
Printing 14
Balance/Contrast 13 Needs brighter highlights and some clean darks
Design & Composition (possible 20 points) 18 nice composition, very interesting
Over all comments (possible 15 points) 13

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Take a moment...

Here are the photos for the 3 pictures I entered in the Shoreline Arts festival. The festival was this past Saturday & Sunday. While I didn't win anything, it was educational to be a part of it.

Take a moment to enjoy a refreshing vacation:

The coliseum

The invitation

Long Beach marina

Continuing on yesterdays thoughts...

Two very popular schools of thought today are the Secret and The law of attraction. These schools of thought teach the power of focus - what you focus on you will attract. Both teach biblical principles, but both leave God at the fringes rather than as the originator and sustainer of these laws. Like the law of gravity, you are affected by them wether you believe in the law itself or in the One who set the law in place.

In the mid 50's, Norman Vincent Peale wrote The power of positive thinking. In chapter 2, A peaceful mind generates power, he quotes a conversation he has with several gentlemen, one who complained about his poor nights sleep and the others restful, peaceful sleep. The rested man said:

"I don't go to bed with an ear full of trouble. I went to sleep with a mind full of peace." This gentleman was referring to his family's practice in his youth that he and his wife had recently begun; the practice of reading the bible together before bed.

Peale suggests emptying the mind of the negative, but filling that vacuum with creative and healthy thoughts, he includes scripture, visualization, and "suggestive articulation" as ways to gain a peaceful mind, and ultimately to achieve your goals.

So, if we attract what we're focused on the question this whole line of thought raises is what are you focused on?

Can I have a witness?!

While I've been silent on the blog lately, there has been much going on between my ears. Lots of points are connecting in new ways and changing previously held beliefs and thoughts.

I just finished rereading Pegasus in space and was struck once again by this discussion:

Our psychic powers utilize the quantum mechanical effects of an observer on a macroscopic scale," the professor said simply. Peter looked confused. "You know that in the realm of quantum mechanics, simply observing a particle changes it's state, correct? Professor Heisenberg embodied the in his Uncertainty Principle."
"Yes," Peter replied. "The Heisenberg Uncertainty Principle states that with subatomic particles it is not possible to observe its state without the energy used to make the observation causing a change in that state - if you shine a light on an electron it will either change its speed or its orbit."
"Correct," the professor said. "The effect of the observer is more profound, even. In the case of Schroedinger - and his poor unfortunate imaginary cat - an observer is required before an observation can be made."
"Like Schroedinger's cat - no one can know if the cat is dead or alive without actually opening the airtight box and looking, " Peter agreed.
"Exactly," the professor replied enthusiastically. "And we Talented people are very special observers. While nothing can be said to have happened without an observer, we, with our Talents, can make things happen the way we want them."
Pegasus in space by Anne McCaffrey
Chapter 14 page 376

Chris and I have the understanding that God has limited Himself in His actions, until He has a witness to what He is about to do. That principle is found in Ezekiel 22:30 and you can see it in operation all throughout the Old Testament, and Jewish life today requires a witness (that's plural, sometimes its 1 sometimes its more to serve as "a" witness), but the scripture that comes to mind is Jesus speaking to some of His disciples. He says:

But you will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes on you; and you will be my witnesses in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and to the ends of the earth." Acts:1:8 NIV - just before the transfiguration and before Pentecost

Another New Testament passage that comes to mind is about those who watch what we are doing:

...we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses Hebrews 12:1

So how does all that tie together? If God is looking for a man in whom He can work through, and yet requires a witness, what if we align our thoughts, our desires with what He desires. Not only do we give Him permission to act, He is first and foremost a gentleman, but we then become witnesses to what He desires to do in the first place. As a special added bonus, at no charge, we are also the agent of change that allows Him to move. The question then becomes, "What does God desire to do?" By asking him, we partner with Him, we focus our thoughts, intentions and desires on Him and we become His witnesses.

This is only one of the places this line of thought has taken me in the past few days. The question it raises is - What is God asking your help with today?

Friday, June 13, 2008

Ultimate resolutions

I began thinking about the concept of ultimate resolutions yesterday; an ultimate resolution is when you see changes happening but you can see that it isn't the ultimate solution so you don't jump on board. The only problem with this is that somethings need to have your involvement in the beginning so that they can evolve into what you "see" or envision as the ultimate resolution. It's your involvement that gives it life and morphs it into the end result you "see". If you don't get involved, if you don't take a risk, you run the risk of paralysis, of uncertainness and insecurity.

Does paralysis, of uncertainness or insecurity ring a bell in your life??? What ultimate resolution are you waiting for? What do you need to take a risk with and just jump in?

Saturday, June 7, 2008

Spheres of influence

It’s been a busy week; we’ve been in New Jersey for a friends wedding, and since we were clear across the country, we took a couple of days to enjoy New York city. Chris’s one request was to take in a Yankees game because this is the final season in the original stadium. While we watched batting practice, the importance of spheres of influence came to me. What I saw were men preparing: stretching, warming up, practicing home run hits and placement hits, rabid fans streaming in, calling out to their favorite player, comparing Yankee trivia with one another, the microcosm that is the Bronx zoo and much more. My mind wandered back to the wedding and the reception. There were similarities, though on a different scale; friends and family with common interests gathering together to celebrate the joining of two into one. As I reflected, I realized that who we become is a direct reflection of who we surround ourselves with on a daily basis. That to achieve anything, not only do we need to apply ourselves diligently, but we need the synergistic energies of those we surround ourselves with to make it there.

Chris and I had a long conversation about this on the subway home. He’d seen the same thing and had the same response. We decided we have some re-evaluating and reconnecting to do. What about you. Are you surrounded with and by the people you admire and desire to become like? Or do you need to make some changes in your life??? Wherever you find yourself, may the right choices and people come into your life and may the connections fuse together effortlessly.

Monday, May 26, 2008

The art of hearing God - pt 2

The past week I finished my essay questions for The art of Hearing God teacher certification. It took me a few weeks to get up the courage to begin, and then I flew through the majority of the essay, only to be stumped for a week on the last few questions.

In the last few questions I came face to face with the reality that I am not where I had hoped to be when I began the process several years ago, and then I had to fight through through to the fact that life is a process, not a destination. I knew this, I can see it more easily for others than for myself, but I was faced with and had to come to grips with the undeniable truth, again, that it's all a process. And once I allowed myself to be where I am and not where I want to be, I was able to finish up the essay and send it in.

That concept was one of the "aha" moments I had when I was in the class - that we are all in process at some level or another. I don't see myself as a type A personality, but I do like to complete a job well, Chris says I am a force of nature to be reckoned with at those times. This past week, I came face to face, again, with the fact that the job isn't completed till I pass from this world to the next, and I may as well enjoy the process. I hope that you too will allow yourself the freedom to enjoy the process of your life.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

My wonderful husband

I've told you I'm married, but I don't think I've told you what a wonderful man I'm married to. I stopped the other day and began writing down some of the characteristics I love and enjoy about him, to share a few:

Consistent, unchanging, yet flexible
Wants and works for the best for me
Loves me with all my faults and strengths, always encourages me to be the best me I can be.
You know right were you stand with him
Likes to talk with me and spend time with me
A rock

As I was thinking about all this my thoughts turned to my dreams. In my dreams, whenever my husband appears, I know it's God showing up. Awhile back I understood that Chris' name means "Christ bearer", and he is. He brings the living presence of God into every situation and place that he enters. Christ dwells in him. Chris is my husband, as Christ is my Husband. So whenever I dream and Chris is involved, I sit up and pay attention. In writing out some of the characteristics I love in Chris, I realized that those are some of the same characteristics that I love about Christ.

Consistent, unchanging, yet flexible
Wants and works for the best for me
Loves me with all my faults and strengths, always encourages me to be the best me I can be.
You know right were you stand with him
Likes to talk with me and spend time with me
A rock

Understand that I am not elevating my husband to the level of God. That's not what I am saying. What I am saying is that I know that I am loved; by my earthly husband and by my heavenly Husband. I am saying that I am fortunate that I see the love of my heavenly Husband in the love of my earthly husband. That doubts about how good God is and how He thinks of me are non-existent, because I have a living breathing example of His love for me. May you too know with confidence how great God's love for you is.

Thursday, May 15, 2008

The art of hearing God.

If you haven't picked it up by now, we are big movie watchers, and readers. We like Sci-Fi and action. I prefer movies that aren't ponderous or "thinkers". What has been striking me in everything I read or watch lately is the skill level that people have attained, and then I realize that the skill level they have attained came at the expense of a lot of practice, and a lot of failure. Slowly I am beginning to mirror, for myself, the Robbinson's (Meet the Robbinsons) philosophy of celebrate your failures. I've always been able to celebrate with others and help them to move on to try again, but moving beyond my own fears and failures have become more difficult as I move into places that I never expected to see myself. Scary places. And yet, I've resolved to meet these fears head on and have accepted the challenge of excellence.

Several years ago Chris and I took several classes offered by Streams ministry, the first was called The art of hearing God. The classes were so life changing that Chris took me to North Sutton NH to attend the teacher training. North Sutton is in the middle of nowhere and there was 3' of snow on the ground. We were told that pine trees outnumbered humans 3 to 1. Believe it.

After the week long intensive, there was a follow up test of 100 questions and then an essay test of 10 questions. The 100 questions took me about 6 months to complete and the essay 6 months to complete 8 or the 10 questions. I was finishing the last 2 questions when my computer died, with no backup. So, this week I began the essay questions again. I've been putting it off, not just because the questions are multipart and difficult, not just because they pertain to how I've integrated the material into my life and how I will use my life experiences to teach the course, but because I have to overcome some basic obstacles, and answer some questions for myself. Questions like overcoming being scared to be so transparent.... answering the question of am I good enough to be a teacher. I know the answers to these questions, and am addressing the others that haunt me, now its just going for it.

I'll keep you updated as to my progress.

Wednesday, May 14, 2008


I love seeing the hawks soar overhead, hawks look ungainly as they flap, and I am of the opinion that they were designed to soar.

As I drive home, there is often a red tailed hawk perched on an electrical pole. He sits there and looks majestic as he surveys his territory and looks for dinner. Sometimes during the day I'll see a hawk soaring with several smaller birds around it, the smaller birds pester the hawk by dive bombing it and trying to break it's rhythm of soaring. I can sense the frustration he feel feels when his rhythm is broken, the dive bombing is simply ignored, but the break in his soaring is an irritant. The interesting thing is that he doesn't retaliate by going after his attacker, he simply gives another downstroke and moves beyond the abilities of his attackers.

There are lessons to be learned from the hawks; ignore the nuisances and move beyond your attackers abilities. Don't give either the honor of being recognized or acknowledged. Your here to soar, so soar.

Monday, May 12, 2008

The journey

I've been thinking about journeys lately. Society would have us believe that when we set out on a journey, the accomplishment is in the attainment of whatever we set out to achieve. But the reality of it is that the end result is really only a tool for the change that happens in us.

Knowing I wasn't feeling well yesterday, my wonderful husband picked up the movie Stardust. We'd seen it before but he knew it would be perfect for the vegetative state I was in. That's not to say it's not a good movie, just that action or a thinker wasn't gonna cut it last night. In the movie, Tristen sets out on a quest to prove his love to the village beauty, who doesn't respect or honor him. In his adventure his experiences change him from a boy to a confident man. In the midst of the process, he finds true love. He returns to his village to present Victoria with a piece of the star. Victoria opens the door to find a grown up confident Triston at her doorstep. And she is impressed. As I saw Victoria's view, I was struck by the change that occurs in us while we are busy on our own journeys. We are changed, matured, tempered, and hopefully all the best qualities in us are brought out. We are changed in the journey, and that is the accomplishment.

All these thoughts began Friday as I had lunch with a friend. We were talking about her job and some difficult situations she faces. The Greek myth of Sisyphus came to mind. Even if you don't recognize his name you know the myth, Sisyphus is sentenced by "the gods" to roll a boulder up hill though out eternity. If you want to read the whole story here's a link: The outcome of the story, my version any way; Sisphus is not a nice guy, is that in pushing against this immovable rock, he has changed and gains strength.

What impossible situations are you facing today? What rocks do you have to roll up hill? Know that as you push against them, you are changed. Like Tristen above, you may not see or sense the change, but you are changed and are changing by facing those situations and pushing against them. Keep your eye on your goal, but enjoy the journey there. For it is in the journey that we are truly changed.

Friday, May 9, 2008


Finished Mosaic last night. It was a good read, more than that, a satisfying read. It's been too long since I have had a book that compelled me to read it in one sitting. I think the mark of a good book is that you are changed by reading it, like your changed by hearing the lyrics to a good song.

Amy's recollections made me stop and think about my own life. We're very different people, but we are both content with our lives, both the highs and the lows. Unlike some sectors of our society, Amy's life isn't preplanned for Superstar success, but rather rich with, family, friends, living and exploring this life that God has given. I desire no less, and that is most likely the most difficult part of leaving corporate America - to find, or rediscover my own unique rhythms. I know that I'll look back on this time as I look back at grade school; the formative years. But yet, right now I know I need to pass through this season, to learn new things, new rhythms. To be stretched in new ways. And ultimately, I will look back with contentment.

Thursday, May 8, 2008


It's been a few days since I posted anything, in part because I didn't think I had anything to write, in part because I didn't think anyone was "listening". Today I spoke with a friend and he mentioned that he'd been keeping up on my post-corporate life through my blog. It was gratifying to know that someone was "listening" and involved in my life.

This past week I've been doing a lot of studying and research on several subjects that my new employment requires. Honestly more focused work than my day to day corporate life. This afternoon I took a break and began reading Amy Grant's Mosaic. I have always connected with her music and lyrics; lyrics make or break a song for me. In her introduction she wrote:

...I soon discovered that thinking about writing a book and actually writing a book are two very different experiences. Suddenly I feared that I had nothing to say - that none of my stories were interesting at all....

I completely related to that statement.
"Is anyone interested in what I have to say?"
"How transparent do I become?"
"Is a blog safe to share the intimate thoughts and details of your life???" That one comes after hearing a friend tell me about his utube video was being shown by an extremist site that also showed the gory details of a beheading.

In reading Amy's book, I realized that I began this blog an an exercise in my writing skills. I am not doing it for your feedback, though I won't turn it away. This is an exercise in exercise.

And so I start yet again... and may have to start again several times. I hope you enjoy yourself here. I hope you find something that makes your day a bit brighter, and draws you a bit closer to the Father.

Friday, May 2, 2008

Roozengaarde pt 2

More photos for your enjoyment:


Took a trip to Roozengaarde this am. It's the show garden for Washington tulip Co. If you order tulip bulbs from Holland, chances are good they came from Roozengaarde in Mt Vernon WA, USA.

Sit back and enjoy a moment away.

Wednesday, April 30, 2008

27 dresses

Have you seen the movie? Enjoyable, cute. I know that's the kiss of death review for a guy but my husband enjoyed the movie as well.

The story revolves around Jane, who's been a brides maid 27 times, but never the bride. The movie ends with her getting married, sorry for ruining the ending for you, but there are 2 scenes that stood out to me, both at her wedding. The first is when her husband to be, Kevin, sees her walk down the aisle, and his face lights up when he sees her. Don't know about you, but that's the moment I watch for at a wedding; how the groom reacts to seeing his intended as she come down the aisle. That expression tells me much about their future together, and that scene caused Chris and I revisit our wedding day. I remember the look in his eyes and he remembers me being excited to be with him. Both those emotions are still evident today, 19 years later. Like Jane, I needed a strong personality to balance me, to keep me pointed in the right direction and to encourage me. At the alter, Kevin asks her if this moment is all that she dreamed it would be. She answers "No. it's more, so much more." I can relate to that, I even resemble that thought. I could have never imagined who or what I needed in a husband, but thankfully God is in the details.When we got married I had no idea where we'd be today or what we would have come through, together. Chris, and marriage have been more than I ever dreamed it would or could be.

The second scene that caught my eye is when the camera pans back from the wedding and all the brides she's been there for are there for her, in the dresses that they chose for her to wear on their day. This month we were invited to attend the wedding of a friend who lived with us for almost a year after a nasty divorce. We haven't seen each other much over the last few years, but when it came time to have the people important to him celebrate, he called us. Yesterday, we got a call from another friend who is getting married early next month. Like the first friend, he also went through a nasty divorce, and even though we haven't seen him for a few years, he's asked us to come celebrate with them. Like the brides that show up for Jane's wedding, we are honored by these requests, to know that people we've shared life with, desire that we celebrate this phase of life with them. Hearing from both these guys out of the blue, and being honored by them to come and help them celebrate has caused me to think of all the people that have moved in and out of our lives. Those we've lost touch with and those we see regularly. Each one is a part of my life, a part of the life that is ChrisandYvonne. Each one has added to the tapestry of who we are and where we've been and well as where we're going.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Just Do It.

I’m finding there is great freedom in just doing something. In accomplishing something. In checking something off on my “to do list”. But it took leaving corporate America for me to learn how to just do it, I should say begin to learn how to just do it. Yes I accomplished much while I was in corporate America, but that also meant I had to meet deadlines, had to answer to someone else’s sense of importance, someone else’s rhythms. Have I figured it all out? No. Will I stumble and make mistakes, even fail? Maybe. But I’m learning, again and yet in a new way what it means to keep moving forward.

The view from my office: