Thursday, June 30, 2016

What I Learned in June

Life is more like a rhythm to move with.

June was an incredibly full month with many responsibilities, a few surprises and renewed joy. Hubby and I were treated to the Waterfront concert in Bangor by our daughter. The performer was Dolly Parton and she was absolutely delightful! As you can see in the pic, it was a cold windy evening but a lot of fun.

I find myself enjoying the altar of my desk each morning more and more. Some days I fit in fifteen minutes to begin my day with prayer. The mornings I can leisurely sit here for two hours are my favorites.

I am leading a small Bible Study on Priscilla Shirer's "Armor of God." This is a good companion to her book Fervent. Given a choice I recommend the book.

We had our foundation worked on this month too so I have been in a mess! No washer for 10 days, dirt tracked in regularly, and various musty smells from wind blowing up through open cellar.  Not great for a woman sensitive to allergies! All in all, I managed to learn a few lessons, maintain a rhythm and practice gratitude.

Here are a few things I learned in June:
  • My Year of Yes is an effective tool! 
In May I made a decision to say yes to what matters to me. To what I love, to adventure, to things that normally make me afraid. For a year. 
I have become more confident in my choices. I find I am not waiting to matter to someone else and being disappointed because I matter to me. 

  • Forget the Pools!
I signed up for Emily Freeman's audio scripture meditations. In one of them, she made a piercing statement: forget the pools. Emily was describing the man by the pool of Bethesda waiting to be healed if only someone would put him in the pool. Then he met Jesus. I realized there were pools in my life that I turn to for various needs, only to discover they fall far short. I love the mantra- Forget the Pools!

  • The Holy Spirit does the impossible, AKA- I can give up chocolate.
After struggling with acid reflux for months, I made a few drastic changes in my diet. Chocolate has always been my love and my nemesis. Finally after a horrible attack, I asked God to take over and remove this addiction. As simple as the prayer I prayed, He did!

  • Setting intentions still works for me.
Every week I write out my intentions and check in now and then. It works!

  • I am learning to protect my heart.
When I am feeling hurt, rejected or overlooked, I bring those feelings to the Lord and remember I matter to me and that's enough. Somehow this knowledge helps me to know I matter to God.

  • God works while I pray, wait, and trust. He loves to surprise me!
I have been praying for a family member for months with a directive from God to wait. June was the month of turnaround.
I also prayed for Mom for a heart procedure she was having done. We drove the three hours to Bangor, staying in a motel for the night, expecting perhaps another night on top of that. A brilliant cardiologist decided to run a few more tests and sent us home without the heart cath and a clean slate. (well other than new BP medication and instructions). What a blessing!

  • Journal, journal journal!
Journaling is a valuable practice in my life and I wouldn't be without it. I joined Jamie Ridler's Journal Club this month. even though I keep missing the live feed because of traveling, its a lot of fun!

I cannot believe I am saying goodbye to June already but what a  jam-packed month of joy even in the midst of chaos and challenges!

Tuesday, June 21, 2016

Showing Up To Celebrate!

Lupines fill the fields, grass and trees are already the rich green color of summer, and the wind blows incessantly. Winter blankets still grace my bed, to be thrown off after an 80 degree day and pulled back over us in the middle of the night. June has been wet and cold, yet dusty fields cry for rain due to the hefty breezes.

The past couple of weeks my days have been filled to the brim with office work, trips to doctor appointments with mom, and journeying downstate every weekend for one thing and another ( i will highlight these soon).

I haven't even had time to get all my flowers in. The Amish are working on our foundation so we are in a mess. What garden I  did plant is struggling.

Yet I am celebrating today. I stopped the car and got out to snap a few photos of the lupines. They are so beautiful right now. This afternoon I returned to my long neglected book and wrote four whole pages. Hey, every little bit helps!

I have so many things I want to write and share with you here, but never seem to get to it. Supper preparation beckons me now, but I have decided to use the little snippets of time I have, to do the things I enjoy. This post may not be polished but nevertheless, I am showing up. :)

Take those fifteen minute breaks you have and do something you love this week. Show up in the moment.

Hopefully I will be back soon.

Monday, June 6, 2016

Discovering Podcasts

A world of information, community and joy has opened to me recently in the form of podcasts. 

I always had a few go-to podcasts on my phone like iBethel and EMIC plus Creative Living with Jamie. but wasn't aware that anything else existed. Then I stumbled across "What Should I Read Next?" with Anne Bogel. This led me to a few more discoveries. Here they are.

What Should I Read Next?

I absolutely love this podcast! I devoured episode after episode until I was completely caught up to date. In this podcast Anne interviews guests with a few simple questions. 

What are 3 books you love, a book you hate and what are you reading now. Anne then recommends three reads to her guest to try. 

My love for reading stepped up to another level. I quickly ordered "The Kitchen House," a novel about slavery on a plantation and the complex relationships crossing racial borders. Also "All The Light You Cannot See"  a World War II novel that I couldn't put down. I will tell you more in the future about these books.

I dug out a classic "To Kill a Mockingbird" and a long must-read copy of Harry Potter. These are on my summer reading to do list.

I love this podcast! Did I mention that? :) 

I ordered my books very cheap on

~ The Healthy Mom's Podcast

Although my family is grown, I find the Healthy info interesting and informative.

~ Sorta Awesome

I've only listened to a few so far, but I'm enjoying them. While working in the office today, I listened to the episode on " Ten Friends Every Woman Needs."

~ HopeWriters

I love Emily Freeman's books! This podcast is done by Emily, her dad and her sister- possibly more. I've just discovered it. A great podcast for writers of all kinds.

~ On Being &
The Simple Show

The jury is out on these two podcasts so far as I am still new to them.

~ The Happy Hour with Jamie Ivey

So far I like what I'm hearing! Love episode #90 with Lauren Chandler.

Check them out at iTunes or in your app store for more information. And please, if you have a favorite share with me in the comments section.

Happy Podcasting!