Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Classes Have Started!

Whelp. I did it. 

Last week was my first week back of my final semester. At least for this stage of the game. Whether or not I go back and get my Master's remains to be seen. 

I meant to do a whole first year back in college recap back in May. Obviously, I found something else to do. 

As an online student, my school supply list was pretty basic. If you have ever had to purchase college textbooks you know that it would have to be. But then again, I have no idea what the cool kids on campus have in the way of school supplies. I am content with a hot beverage, my laptop, and my cat for company. 

I did order a pack of fancy gel pens and picked up a pretty hardcover notebook at TJ Maxx. I have always had the best time going back to school shopping. Let's be honest. Office Supplies make me happy. If I happen to gift you with a journal and a gel pen, you know that I love you. I have found that, in general, office supplies aren't as fun when one is taking classes online. I will use my pretty notebook and gel pens to write out lists, take vague notes during online lectures, and doodle. 

Instead of more notebooks, some sort of sturdy backpack, and writing utensils, I bought a steam mop and a cute duster-length cardigan in the color "latte."  The purchase of the $80 Charactertistics of Human Resources book didn't quite have the same charge. A girl has to have her kicks somewhere.

I am a bit proud of myself. I only needed seven credits to graduate, but in the world of college credits, I actually had to take three specific courses to complete my major. As I am generally over the top, I am taking twelve credits this semester. Why take any chances? 

Anyhoo. Last spring I procrastinated in registering for my classes for this semester. One of my required courses had to be from a list of Upper Division Elective courses. I really wanted to get into the popular "History of Rock" class. Let's face it. Everyone needs a few of those kinds of classes in their college career. We used to joke about underwater basket weaving and the like, but I get it. Sometimes, the fewer brain cells involved the better. 

I didn't get into the class. Instead, there were only a few classes that had available spots. My advisor recommended that I take Research and Development Something Something Something. I say "something" because I can't even remember the complete title of the class. Fast forward to a few weeks ago. I ordered my books and when they came in the mail I gave all of them a quick flip-through. 

Research and Development Something Something Something was in all actuality some kind of class engineers take. THERE WERE FORMULAS AND MATH ALL THROUGH THE TEXBOOK. Can you feel my panic? 

Friends. My last math class was in 2000. It was Math for Teachers. The one before that was College Algebra and it took place in roughly 1997. And do I resemble an engineer? I am the least analytical person I know. 

I frantically emailed my advisor. How in the world could we fix this? It wasn't a matter of dropping it and taking something more appealing. I HAD to take something from the Upper Division Elective list and those classes were fulled up, jack. She suggested that try to register for something else every day and keep on trying. After all, folks do a lot of moving classes around that first week or so before school. 

For the next two weeks, I tried to add "classes" (plural). Three. Times. A. Day. Nothing. The day before classes started I had decided that maybe Jesus knew something about me and engineering that I didn't. Maybe this would be something I was good binge reading and thrift shopping. 

Thankfully, Jesus knows all things, and as the morning classes began one of those valued Upper Divison Elective classes opened up. 

My new class? Society and Aging. 

I am elated. Now, this is in my wheelhouse. I know all about aging. I am most likely the oldest person in the class. Most of the students (according to their online introductions), are rehabilitation therapy majors, or medical professionals. There are one or two others taking the class for their Upper Division Elective class. If this first week is any indication, I am going to love this class. I am practically living it! 

I promised in my last (but brief) post that I would do a better job of keeping in touch. It is my goal to post more frequently. Everyone needs goals. Mine this week include posting more on the blog, consuming fewer Diet Cokes, and keeping my family in clean underwear. 

We do what we can, friends. 

We do what we can. 

Tuesday, August 16, 2022

It's Time Again

 It's time. 

It's time to get back to writing and posting on this little blog. I have unintentionally neglected it for such a long time. 

I originally started it for selfish reasons. I was facing some challenges and needed an outlet. I needed to pontificate and ramble. I also needed to remind myself that life can still be beautiful despite the scary stuff we all face in life. 

I admit I've experienced burnout along the way. This past year, especially. I am trying to find my pace again and trying to focus on something other than my own fears and foibles. In other words, I need to find joy in places and situations that seem joyless. 

Life is still challenging. There are issues that haven't magically disappeared into that place where all problems go to die. But it is time for me to find the delightful moments in life and encourage those of you who have struggled to do the same. 

My delight might be different than your delight but at least we can all encourage one another. The world is too full of nastiness and spite. 

I am going to honor my promise to be more purposeful and deliberate in my days. AND to honor those goals I have set for myself. With God's help. Always with His help. 

Have you found yourself stuck in place? 

Tuesday, January 4, 2022

A List (Catching Up!)

 It's literally been a YEAR since I've posted anything on the blog.  

I started a few posts. They generally started with....

"I've not written anything in a while." That was about as far as I got. One of the goals I have for the year is to be more consistent with my writing. And to get back to some of the fun, lifestyle kinds of posts I used to do in the past. 

I just need to be better organized with my life. And everybody said, Amen and amen. However, that is another topic for another post. 

I thought I would use this post to catch up with all five of my readers (hi, mom) about the comings and goings of the past few months. 

It has been a doozy! Instead of writing pages, and pages, and pages of what's been going down, I am going to implement my favorite tool in life. The List. 

This, my friends, is The List. 

1. I did go back to college. I am still there. I survived my first semester and made the Dean's List. Classes start back next week. I am armed and ready with a new planner. I currently have only six classes to complete before I am finished with my Bachelor's degree. 

2. What am I going to do with that degree? I have no clue at this moment in time. Just thought I would put that out there just in case you asked. 

3. My parents and nephew had an awful car accident at the beginning of October. 

4. I tried to write about it and couldn't. All the feelings are still being felt. My nephew was in the hospital for weeks. And then rehab. My parents still are recovering from injuries they suffered. 

5. I went to Missouri and stayed for two weeks. It is awful to feel helpless. I still feel helpless. 

6. Everyone is doing better now. There are still challenges. Josiah is currently with his cousin. In a few weeks, both the boys are going to go to the farm. Chris needs some additional time to heal and to recover and my dad needs some help. Mom broke her arm and continues to deal with that injury. It looks like Josiah is the most likely candidate for cook and bottle washer. 

7. I hope the folks like peanut butter sandwiches and fish sticks.

8. My in-laws have also been in crisis. Last year, my mother-in-law develop some significant nerve and spine issues. She had surgery and has never completely regained strength. The Muffin has spent months going back and forth nearly every week to help her and his dad. 

9. There are many grand things about getting older. And then there are many hard things. One of those hard things is watching your parents age and go through difficulties. 

10. Princess the Cat is still fabulous. 

11. I have gained so much weight since moving to Indiana. Combined with that and the stress of the past few months, I started 2022 with a significant health crisis. 

12. Not to worry. I've been here before. Unfortunately, recently, feeling poorly has been more of a daily norm. This has to stop. Do you ever feel like you are your own worse enemy?

13. I recognize that I have challenges that other people don't. But I also have all the tools that living with chronic illness has given me. I know what to do. It's a matter of loving myself enough to do it.

14. Anybody relate? 

15. I guess we just need to start where we can and go on from there. 

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Thrifty Finds Video (Not to be confused with Thrifty Finds a Video)

 Well. I've finally succumbed to the peer pressure and showed some stuff I bought on line.  You know I love a good fleamarket/thrift store crawl. 

In this video I've shared the stuff I've acquired over the past few months. Some of it is furniture. 

And long,

dangly earrings. One cannot forget the long, dangly earrings. 

At least I can't.

Tuesday, July 27, 2021

I'm 49. And I'm Going Back to College

 I know! 

I've neglected my little blog terribly. 

Stuff. That's all I can say about it all. 

I've had stuff. 

AND I continue to have stuff. Some of the same stuff and some new stuff. 

AND I know you clicked here because you are curious about the title of this post. AND it's all true. 

I am going back to school. Long story short. At least, I will attempt to keep this long story short. Those who have followed me a while know that I can be a bit wordy (just a bit).

WAAAY back in 1996, I went back to school. For the first time. Actually, I went to Beauty School directly out of High School. So I don't know if I need to count Beauty School as the first time....? know what I mean. One month into my first semester in college I had a MASSIVE car wreck. Which I emphasize the life-changing event by using ALL CAPS. It was that major. I continued classes at home when I was sent home from the hospital. I was taking 9 credit hours and my college agreed to let me continue them correspondence over the next semester. Keep in mind that online classes just weren't a thing back in 1996. 

I went back the next Fall Semester with 9 hours under my belt, in addition to a handy-dandy cane and major PTSD. I basically went to college for the next 4 years. In that time, I went into Heart Failure, was diagnosed with diabetes and cardiomyopathy, graduated with an Associates Degree, went on to teacher's college, taught in a Christian private school 40 hours a week, had a miscarriage and adopted a baby boy. 

I ended 2001 with a new baby and just a few credits away from my Bachelor's Degree. 

Can I tell you I was tired? 2001 was a rough year for so many reasons. I had a miscarriage in August. Exactly a month later 9/11 happened. We adopted Josiah in November. I decided to stay home with my baby boy and take a little time off. 

That time off turned into nearly 20 years. 

I don't regret staying home with that brown-eyed baby boy. However, I have always dreamed about going back and finishing my degree. I knew I couldn't teach again. At least, I couldn't teach little kids. Which is tough when your degree field is in Early Childhood Education. 

I've looked into going back before. Sometime when Josiah was 10-11, I thought I would check it out. But frankly, our little family was too stretched in other ways. We needed me to be at home and we needed me to be healthy. 

This year, however, this blessed year with all of its stresses and anxieties gave me permission to be just a tad bit selfish. 

I contacted our local state university and sent them my transcripts. I had more than enough credits to fit nicely into one of their programs. I got the money I needed. And yesterday morning, I purchased my books. 

I have about a year until I graduate. 

What's my degree in? 

I really couldn't tell you. 

It has Career Education in the title and my minor is in Education. 

Do I think that you need a college degree to be successful and happy in life? Absolutely not.

But do I believe in going after a goal and finishing the course? Absolutely. 

I am 49 years old. Many of those other dreams and goals won't be fulfilled in my life and I've had to come to terms with that. But, wow! It does feel good to have one more thing checked off that list. 

And really. I'm a nerd. I loved college. All the 4200 years I went. Though this time it will be online. Do I even know how to do that? 

I'm 49. I'll figure it out. 

Wednesday, May 12, 2021

Good Morning!

Good morning, friends. 

I truly intended on posting a link to a Bible Ladies Brunch Video this morning. I do have one that already went up last week that I didn't link to on the blog. AND I have my Mother's Day message that I planned on sharing this week. BUT...the interwebs. 

I got up this morning and the video had only uploaded to 47% because my computer restarted overnight. 

I think you will enjoy the message. At least, I hope you do. I promise to share as soon as the dastardly interwebs cooperates. 

For now...shew! I have not posted a blip on the blog in quite some time. I went to see my parents for 3 weeks in April. The boy is still out there helping his Papa with spring chores. I have been quite neglectful in life updates and words of wisdom as of late.

Do you ever just have those seasons of life where you just need a minute to collect your thoughts? And by minute, I mean an extended period of time. I have so many things I need to take control of AND plan for. 

For one, I am probably going to go back to school. I have a few goals and dreams that I need to take charge of. I am still in the preparation stages. I still need to locate all my transcripts and find ways to finance all those hopes and dreams. 

I have a few other things in the works. You will hear more about them. SOON. 

Have a beautiful day! 

Saturday, March 13, 2021

The Bible Ladies Brunch Bunch - Learning to Live a Beautiful Life Series - 3 Things

 Hey friends.

This week has been particularly a rough one. I won't go into all the details. But let's just say I've needed all the advice I give in this video.

I was talking to my mom on the phone earlier. She reminded me how life does us. We think we have things figured out and then WHAM! We are reminded that we know nothing at all and the best course of action would be to crawl back into bed and start over. That last bit was my contribution to the conversation. 

In any event, I hope this conversation we have challenges something inside of all of us and we are reminded that we need to trust God with the details and give Him our doubts.

You might notice I am wearing the same outfit as last week. I did film them a few days apart. I just was feeling the cream and roses. You will be comforted to know that I might have looked put together on top, but underneath I had on the stretchiest of stretchy pants and my rattiest house slippers. 

We do what we can. 

Be blessed and encouraged this week. 

Wednesday, March 3, 2021

The Bible Ladies Brunch Bunch - Learning to Live a Beautiful Life Series - Ugly

Good morning! 

You might have noticed I didn't post a Bible Ladies Brunch Bunch video last week. Then again, it probably didn't even cross your mind. 

The truth is that I did create a video for last week. I just didn't post it. I really wasn't that happy with it. 

Not that this week's video is stellar in any way. It just is something that I probably needed to post last week. 

Today we are talking about "ugly." 

Ugly words. 

And I am sure you all have noticed a plethora of ugly lately. Folks just can't seem to keep it in...whether we all need to hear it or not. 

I have certainly been guilty of spewing a bit of ugly myself. 

I usually have a rough outline when I record these videos. Because me ranting aimlessly for 30 minutes is a complete waste of time. 

In this video, however, I ran a little fast and loose. You will probably be able to tell. l repeated myself fairly often. In my defense, I was interrupted more than a few times. I just cut out those conversations I had with my family.

Nobody wouldn't have been interested in where I keep my Miracle Whip or why The Muffin's prescriptions weren't ready at The Walmarts. But if I do seem distracted you will understand why. 

I have also noticed I tend to lean towards the video camera an awful lot. I think it's because I can't see and for some reason that will help you see me better. Unfortunately, the closer I get to the camera the clearer you can see the "bat in my cave." I have one of those noses. You could probably see up clear to my brain under perfect circumstances. 

But enough about my nose buggers and squinty eyes. I do hope I am able to encourage all of us to use our words with care. 

Hope you enjoy. Below the video are Scriptures that pertain to our subject today. Don't be ugly! 

As promised, here are some Scriptures that talk about using our words. 

1. Proverbs 11:9 “Evil words destroy one’s friends; wise discernment rescues the godly.


2. Proverbs 15:4 “Gentle words bring life and health; a deceitful tongue crushes the spirit.”


3. Proverbs 16:24 “Kind words are like honey – sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.”


4. Proverbs 18:21 “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit.”


5. Proverbs 18:4 “A person’s words can be life-giving water; words of true wisdom are as refreshing as a bubbling brook.”


6. Proverbs 12:18 “There is one who speaks rashly like he thrusts of a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”


7. Proverbs 25:18 “Telling lies about others is as harmful as hitting them with an ax, wounding them with a sword, or shooting them with a sharp arrow.”


8. Luke 6:43-45 “For there is no good tree which produces bad fruit, nor, on the other hand, a bad tree which produces good fruit. For each tree is known by its own fruit. For men do not gather figs from thorns, nor do they pick grapes from a briar bush. The good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth what is good; and the evil man out of the evil treasure brings forth what is evil; for his mouth speaks from that which fills his heart.”


9. Proverbs 21:23 “Whosoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.”


10. James 3:5 “In the same way, the tongue is a small thing that makes grand speeches. But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire.”


11. James 1:26 “If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless.”


12. Proverbs 17:18 “Even a fool who keeps silent is considered wise; when he closes his lips, he is deemed intelligent.”


13. Titus 3:2 “To speak evil  of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy to all people.”


14. Psalm 34:13 “Keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking deceit.”


15. Ephesians 4:19 “Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.”

Wednesday, February 24, 2021

Confessions of a 10 Pound Loser - The Beginning

 I'm starting a new weight loss journey. 

Actually, scratch that. I've been on a weight loss "journey" for years. What I am starting is going to be more of a public sharing of the ups and downs of my experiences. 

My "journey" has had its good days and bad days. I've had more bad that good. I have all kinds of excuses. 

My hormones.

My non-existent metabolism.

White Castle.


The truth is that our troubles and challenges are far more nuanced and complicated than we understand. 

I've been fairly transparent about a few things in my life. Infertility. Chronic Illness. My fondness for murder mysteries and dislike of potty talk. 

I am not quite as chatty about my weight struggles. Mostly because I am so disappointed in myself. And I certainly don't feel good in my current body. 

I've been down this road before. I have been successful at weight loss. I have also been successful at losing and gaining the same 10 pounds a thousand times in my adult years. 

My mom encouraged me to talk more about what I know. What I don't know. How I'm doing. What I'm not doing. About weight loss, at least. She thought my own experiences would be encouraging for someone else. She also gave me the idea of what to call this particular series. 

"Confessions of a 10 pound Loser"

My mom is kind of awesome at jingles and catchy titles. 

My idea would have been more like "My Struggles with Losing Weight While Telling You All The Things You Wish You Never Asked." 

Kind of hard to make a interesting graphic with that one. 

So. Here I go. We'll talk more later. 

Wednesday, February 17, 2021

The Bible Ladies Brunch Bunch - Learning to Live a Beautiful Life - Sacrifice

 Good morning! 

I have a special video for you today.

Sometimes love hurts. 

I think that's a song from somewhere. 

Sometimes love requires us to move beyond our own comforts and desires. It requires us to give up precious time, possessions, wants...etc. It requires us to sacrifice. 

We as Christians understand that because God sent His son as a sacrifice we now have freedom, peace, joy, and everlasting life. 

The dictionary describes sacrifice as "destruction or surrender of something for the sake of something else." 

Destruction sounds kind of we will go with surrender. What have we surrendered for the sake of someone else? 

What have we sacrificed for the sake of another? 

To live a beautiful life requires us to think beyond ourselves. Even when it comes at a cost. 

Today I am talking with Joann. I think you will find her story touching. Especially, for those who are dealing with similar challenges in your own life. 

Sacrifice will probably hurt...but it can still be a beautiful thing. 

You can print off the scripture Joann talked about in the video by clicking this link or the picture below. 

Hope you are encouraged.

Wednesday, February 10, 2021

The Bible Ladies Brunch Bunch - Learning to Live a Beautiful Life - Soul Care

 I understand. 

I'm not really good at taking care of myself. For one, I feel guilty. Should I take precious time for myself when I need to be devoting it to something "far more important?" 

The result of that mindset can be damaging. Not only to me, but to those around me. 

That is why today we are talking about "Soul Care" in The Bible Ladies Brunch Bunch. We are currently going through a series "Learning to Live a Beautiful Life." 

Soul Care needs to be a part of our plan. 

In this video, I not only talk about planning for daily prayer and devotion, but I also talking about other nourishing habits that keep us active and able to do what God has called us to do. 

I hope you enjoy the video. What are something of the things you do on a daily basis to care for yourself and your soul? 

By the way, I mentioned in the video that I would share my current "chair exercise" routine video. It's under 10 minutes. WE can do this! 

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