This, too, shall pass…

A quick google of today’s title finds it defined as a proverb; not a quote from the Bible – you gotta love a phrase that has its own wiki 🙂  It may be based on the oft-repeated phrase,  “And it came to pass,” first used in Genesis chapter four and depending on your source and version, anywhere from 120 to 630 times in the Old and/or New Testament.  One of my favorite authors,  Barbara Johnson, no longer with us, used to say that it’s important to note that the Bible never said, “And it came to stay.”  And like many of us, Barbara knew of what she spoke!

Does it help?  Well, those who know me know that I believe words matter;  when it comes to unpleasantness, discomfort, pain – physical or emotional – you have a choice – dwell or pass through it.  Personally, unless it comes covered in milk chocolate, I believe in letting it pass or passing through it. And while we’re at it, let’s look quickly at the word dwell, a favorite.  It sounds so much nicer to suggest that someone not dwell in or “stay focused” on their perceived misery, than to suggest that they’re wallowing 🙂  I’ve come a long way from the days of being famous for saying something like, “Oh for Pete’s sake, buck up, buddy!”  Now I strive to be nicer, so I use gentler words like dwell.

But when it came down to it, when the walk met the talk, it really was a matter of speaking the result.  I spoke healing and more healing, to myself, my daughters, my extended family.  Fear was not an option, not ever, not allowed and it truly comes down to that.  Cancer, two brain surgeries, chemo, radiation, all came to pass.  Did not come to stay, but came to pass!!

As we move toward Easter 2010,  four years from that fateful day of brain tumor discovery, it came to pass and pass it did, an event in my history that has been handled by my Father in heaven.  And I encourage you, no matter what the situation or challenge you face, it, too, shall pass.  And that can be a most comforting place to dwell as you go through the passing of your challenge.  Be encouraged and be blessed!!



TA DA! and TA DA! again…

A two-TA DA! evening – quite a way to end the weekend!!  Not time-for-sleep end as I still have a transcript due in the morning, but the challenging  part of the weekend is successfully completed.  Top that off with a fun conversation with a special  niece and a “night-night” phone call with my ErinLee and if I didn’t still have to work and it wasn’t past midnight, I’d crank up some music and dance around the kitchen 🙂  because two TA DA!s is pretty all right!

Isn’t that just the way things go sometimes?  I’ve been studying lots, loving my current classes and as my favorite Auntie Arlene said, these classes are right up my alley.  I’m dealing with words – this week all the ologies and isms that come with a class titled Theology for Today.  Add to that my General Survey of the New Testament class and I’m in my element!!  Reading, studying, learning and best of all writing – working hard in addition to life in general, and then to be well rewarded for these efforts with great feedback from fellow students, a maximum grade on a tough paper, and finally 100%, the second week running, on the theology test due each Sunday night.

I’m feeling very blessed and believing  that, as challenging as it’s been to add  this education track to an already complex life after so many years, these successes may indeed be confirmation that I’m on the right path.  And that is an even bigger TA DA!        … Bonne  soirée


Cows on the Loose and a Mouse in the House

cows-centre-crop1How’s that for just another Sunday afternoon on the farm?  All I was trying to do was get a head-start on the trimester of school that begins tomorrow.  Way too simple a plan for the day apparently.  The mouse was and still is more unpleasant than the cows – smaller, but more intimidating.  Who wants to deal with that?

So I do what I always do in times of distress on the farm  – call my Cousin Dan.  And to the rescue, as always, Dan appears.  We baited a mousetrap and placed it strategically – actually Dan did the placing, I applied  peanut butter, crunchy, all natural, by the way, to entice the intruder to its demise.    Now I have to stay away so the intruder takes the bait.  That’s what Dan said when I asked about getting the soon-to-be-deceased out of the house.  I’m supposed to stay away until tomorrow;  stay out of my piano studio and pretend I’m not waiting to hear a !SNAP! for the rest of the afternoon and evening.

The cows?  We’ve had this before, even posted about it before.  A call to the neighbor got them here to corral their animals, not before there were some in the road, which drew spectators, some fearful to keep driving, and two local sheriff’s deputies in squad cars.  Thankfully no lights and sirens – could have caused a stampede 🙂

Isn’t that the way things go?  Your plans get turned upside down by a rodent and some bovine escapees.  I’m sure there’s a lesson here – haven’t figured it out yet.  I’m thinking there has to be some appropriate music as well, but I cannot imagine what, besides Old MacDonald or Hickory Dickory Dock and that won’t do.  So I’m off to salvage what’s left of the day and perhaps to ponder that potential lesson I mentioned.  If anyone has an idea, you know how to reach me through this site.  Bénédictions …


Greatest disaster in over 200 years?

How do we even begin to comprehend the scope of what has occurred? Comfortable here in the US, yet watching the nightmare happening in Haiti, what do you do?  How do we help?  It’s heartening to hear of all the good still in people’s hearts, as folks from around the world pull together in a time of human need.  Disheartening to hear of the scams already in operation to defraud well-meaning people.  As usual in times of crisis, we see the wide range of human behavior, from very good to very awful.

How do you share hope with others in the midst of such devastation?  It seems trite to quote the platitudes that get spoken at times like this.  How would you react if it were your loved ones far away in the midst of great trouble?  What’s your security? To what do you cling?  We’ve talked about this before.

I won’t presume to lecture or instruct today.  I’d just encourage you to look inside and clarify the source of your strength.  As many of us have discovered, personal tragedy can be right around the corner.  We have no idea what’s coming our way, but life means that something is coming our way; personally or on a large scale, we don’t know that either.  I urge preparation, know what matters and  what doesn’t.  And while you’re at it, reach out to family and friends and let them know that they’re loved.  Mend the fences, forgive past hurts.

Go to sleep tonight with a prayer of thanks for all you have and breathe a prayer for comfort for the many who have less. Blessings ….



My last post of 2009 from my home.  In 12 hours I’ll be arriving in Green Bay to catch a bit of sleep before flying out  at 6:30 a.m.  And in 28 hours I will be hugging my beloved Meghan and seeing her new home for the first time.  Am I excited?  You have no idea!!!  As my cousin Jane reminded me, this will give me the energy I need to get everything done.

So what’s the TA DA for?  I have completed another term in school.  I have done battle with algebra and am still standing.  More logical than ever?  I’m too tired to say right now, but I’ve done it, it’s history.  Will I dance around my kitchen as mentioned in a post back in August?  Very likely as I’ve got to keep moving through this day, checking off the list.    Sounds like time for a song, one that contains two of my all-time favorite song lines – check it out and sing with me.

Quickly, what are the two lines?   “Just remember this my girl, if you look up in the sky you can  see the stars and still not see the light.”  Amen to that.  The other is, “So often times it happens that we live our lives in chains and we never even know we have the key.”   It’s time for me to get on my feet.

Blessings to you all in these last pre-Christmas days.  And while I’m anxiously awaiting the gift of time with my Meghan, I’m mindful of the reason behind this celebration – the best Gift ever.  Hope you have it in your life.

Merry Christmas, 2009.  Cherish your friends and family; reach out to those in need.  Coming to you next from the warmth of  South Carolina …


Ch-Ch-Ch-Changes Part I

Some of you know I’m a musician.  That affects how I remember things and how I learn.  No to mention that I’m a child of the 60s and 70s so it should be no surprise to find music throughout these pages.  Today we borrow from Bowie – David the musician, as opposed to Jim, of knife fame.
I’ve been thinking about change a lot these days.  Its been a  subject of discussion in my humanities class, which I’m loving, by the way 🙂 I had to respond to a statement by my professor as to how people view and  respond to change.

Coupled with the letters I sent my girls for St. Nick’s and the memories that brought up, change has indeed, been on my mind.  As I wrote for my class: change is life and life is change.  Sounds so simple, doesn’t it? Pain-free, stress-free, just like change itself.

Not so?  I look at how my life has changed and how I’ve dealt with it; how my girls have changed – independent young women now, living far away from me and each other, yet remaining close thanks to technology.  Ch-ch-ch-changes.

And while I speak easily about my girls being so far away, much of the time  I do not like it one bit!!!  St. Nick comes tomorrow and I didn’t unpack the Christmas stockings, two years running now.  Those stockings I made – love and anticipation sewn into every stitch.  I didn’t grow up with St. Nick, but my girls discovered him the year ErinLee came home from preschool in tears because St. Nick didn’t like her.  He only skips the children who’ve been bad, she said.   So St. Nick became part of our lives.

Talked to ErinLee moments ago – we laughed about how  very often I got it wrong.  St. Nick came a day early or a day late; for whatever reason I struggled with that one.  When they were of an age to understand, we shared many laughs over St. Nick.  But it was always special because that’s when the stockings came out.  We’ll talk about those another time.

In the meantime, in this  pre-Christmas season, give some thought to the many changes and the many benefits you’ve reaped because of them.  Change isn’t always comfortable, but it often precedes dramatic growth. Ch-ch-ch-changes.                                                    Later…


Lazy Saturday Morning?

Okay, it sounds good, but not happening here and not likely to for a while.  So I’m at my computer in my jammies, not yet 7 a.m., playing one of my standard  fire-me-up songs in the background as I review my plan for the day – attack algebra once again, then on to my Old Testament homework, but first a quick run to the farmer’s market, a favorite place, more so today, having received a beautiful new field guide from my bookseller daughter, Meghan.  A couple errands in town, and hopefully at least a few swipes around part of the yard on the lawn tractor in a beautiful September sun – note the optimism 🙂  Could it get too hot today?  Not for me.  Eighty degrees?  I’m lovin’ it – we didn’t have it most of the so-called summer in the Northwoods, so I’ll take every degree of it with a grin and I won’t be cold!!  Probably not seeing the cousins today, did last week and visited my favorite Auntie Arlene on Thursday, so up until 5:45 when I leave for Celebrate Recovery, the group I facilitate on Saturday nights, I’ll be moving, but feeling great, loving life, living and growing throughout the day.  Lazy? No, but sounds like a wonderful Saturday for me.  I’m off …..


In Over Your Head?

That was my thought at 7:00 a.m., trying to figure out what I’m doing in an algebra class.  How, if I’m challenged by navigating the course web site, will I navigate the course?  Oh my…

“Algebraic symbols are used when you do not know what you are talking about.” I don’t know who said it, but it works for me 🙂

So I may be in up to my chin but over my head would never do.  Challenged?  A bit boggled temporarily perhaps?  Those of you who know me have heard me say that words matter. Say you’re in over your head and you probably will be.

So what do you do when you find yourself, like me, facing an algebraic door?  You swallow the panic, take a deep breath, sit up real straight – maybe even stand up – and tell yourself, “I’m looking algebra straight on and I am going to get it; I will win.”

Here we go again, another speech.  You bet!  Speak your victory loud and clear.  I’m speaking mine right here this morning, August 22, 2009, in front of the world via the Web.  By December 18th, end of this semester, at 50+ years old, having survived brain cancer and two brain surgeries, I’ll be the most logical I have ever been, a virtual master of basic algebra, a conqueror of facts and I’ll be dancing around my kitchen singing, “HALLELUJAH, I’ve passed Algebra with flying colors!”

In the meantime, Tom Petty has a song that I adopted as my personal anthem years ago in the face of oppression  – sing it with me, sing it with him, hey,  just sing it!  Here’s the link, stand up and sing  I  Won’t Back Down.

Couple that with a favorite  verse from Scripture and you absolutely have it made.  In over your head?    Not on your life!!!

Stay tuned….


Don’t Tell Me …

So I’m thinking about limits today.  I have a time limit in which to finish this first semester, looming large at the end of this week.  Twitter limits the number of characters you can post; there are speed limits with some fairly large consequences – found that out recently, too.  Sometimes we limit ourselves through our actions, thoughts or words, there’s one to avoid.

The old saying is “The sky’s the limit.”  Google the phrase and you don’t find who originally said it; apparently at some time it was a song title and even the title of a piece of art. Must be one of those public domain things, but I came across a great response:  Don’t tell me the sky is the limit – there are footprints on the moon!!! And that is actually found in a song, whether it’s original, I don’t know, but it’s out there.

Shorten it up and it’s got a great beat – say it out loud, put it in 4/4 time – Don’t tell me the sky’s the limit; there’s footprints on the moon.  You could march to that one and have fun doing it 🙂

And there’s a thought to carry me through the rest of the day; you, too, perhaps.  Beats the daylights out of limiting ourselves in thought, word or deed.  Are you marching?                     Be well….



Second Chances Part I

This will be quick, just to throw the thought out there – how many second chances does a person get?  I’ve sure been blessed with my share.  It’s kind of like a cosmic Do-Over though I choose to believe that they come from a very specific place, Person, if you will.  I believe in the God of second chances and I am living proof, quite literally.

As I have to go out the door in a moment, that’s it for now.  But work this around in your brain and heart and we’ll talk again.

How many second chances have you had?  Do you recognize them for what they are?  How have you used them?  How will you use them?

Stay Tuned as we dig into this thought.                                             au revoir