Throwback Thursday – Sweet Smile

P7040080Hi and Happy Thursday!  I am late in posting since it has been a super busy morning.  You know how those days go, one thing right after the next.

I decided to post this precious picture since I like it so much of Ian.  He has the cutest smile.  Of course, I am a little biased – as a mom should be.

We were at the beach and having fun. My sweet little guy!  Such a tender and wonderful heart he has. I don’t remember how I got him to pose for this picture.  I am just amazed that it turned out.

I wonder what other sweet smiles I will see next from him?  I know there will be many and I cannot wait!

A Rainy Day

rainHi and Happy Wednesday!  Our weather today is rainy and windy with the temperature dropping throughout the day.  However, there are breaks in between the rain that we can enjoy. Right now as I look out my window, I can see the sun peaking through the clouds and it is lovely.

Today I am sad yet happy at the same time so this weather is perfect for my mood.  The health of someone dear to me is deteriorating quickly.  I have had a chance to see this person two days ago and that meant the world to me.  I hope to again very soon, but am not sure if that will be possible.  I just hope and pray that it is.

Like the sun through the clouds, there is some light with the darkness of how I am feeling. I will miss this person terribly, yet I have happiness in my heart.  You see, I know where this person is headed – to Heaven!!   That is an amazing comfort and helps me to see happiness beyond my tears.

Not that this person won’t be missed, quite the contrary.  The fact is that an amazing, long, and wonderful life has been lived.  That is wonderful and something I am learning from, and a real blessing. It is just hard to say goodbye.

Yesterday, I thought of the song, “I Can Only Imagine” by Mercy Me.  These words made me tear up, but also made me smile.  It is a song about meeting the Lord face to face and being curious about what we’d do.  Here are most of the lyrics:

“…I can only imagine
What my eyes will see
When your face
Is before me
I can only imagine

[Chorus:]
Surrounded by Your glory, what will my heart feel
Will I dance for you Jesus or in awe of you be still
Will I stand in your presence or to my knees will I fall
Will I sing hallelujah, will I be able to speak at all
I can only imagine

I can only imagine
When that day comes
And I find myself
Standing in the Son

I can only imagine
When all I will do
Is forever
Forever worship You
I can only imagine.”

Aren’t those words amazing?  Knowing someone will be in the Lord’s presence soon is almost overwhelming, yet such an amazing comfort. This is helping more than I can imagine.

I wonder what my loved one will do when meeting the Lord?  It makes me truly happy to think about since there will be no more pain or suffering, but instead pure and amazing joy.

March 11 – Something Good

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Tuesday.  Hope you are having a great day.  Here it is sunny and will be nice and warm.

Today’s photo challenge is Something Good.  I am first reminded of the song with that title from “The Sound of Music” movie.  It is one of my favorite movies and a romantic song.

Maria and The Captain sing to each other, “For here you are, standing there, loving me whether or not you should. So somewhere in my youth or childhood, I must have done something good.”

For my something good, I wanted to include a photo of me with my grandmother.  She is very dear to me and a lot of fun. Also, I think it is something good that we are close as is the rest of my family.  This photo is from January when she turned 93 years old.

Also good is the time our family spends together.  I love the fact we are there for one another through good times and bad times as well.  My grandmother is the matriarch and loves each of us very much.  It is a blessing to be in such a family.

Today I am thankful for:

  • Seeing old photos taken by my grandfather whom I never knew.
  • Laughing with my family.
  • A sunny morning and a walk to school with a sweet boy.
  • My hot tea and breakfast.
  • Friends who I have known for many, many years.
  • A fun night out with family for pizza at a favorite restaurant.
  • Hugs from my son and other family members.
  • Hearing my husband say I love you.
  • Singing along to favorite songs.
  • Hearing and watching the birds outside in the morning.
  • Singing “Amazing Grace” with friends and family.
  • Old photos and new.

May you have a blessed day full of good things!

March 7 – Time Flies / Happy Birthday Beckie

Fly_POD_3-7-2014Hi and Happy Friday.  Hope you will have a great weekend.  I don’t know about you but I am so very ready for it.

Today’s photo challenge is Fly.  Rather than a photo of something flying in the air, I decided to go with a photo that represents time flying, as in “time flies when you are having fun.”

Here in the left picture are the three of us at the beach several years ago with our mouths open and having fun.  Then in the right, last Mother’s Day, here we are again.  It is amazing how much Ian has grown and changed in that short time.

Rather than a cute baby face, he has stretched out, grown a lot, and turned into a young man, a boy.  My baby no longer looks like a baby.  He looks like a boy who is in school. That seemed to happen really fast too.  And, I was looking at his feet recently.  They have grown so much over the years.  Such tiny baby feet and now his foot is the size of my hand.

Where did the time go? This fall he will turn 7 years old and start 1st grade.  Wow!!!  That is just amazing as I can still remember the day we brought him home from the hospital.  We have had so many fun times ever since.

We do our best to savor our time together and I plan to continue to do just that.

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Happy Birthday to Beckie! Happy Birthday to you!!!

I also want to wish my wonderful sis-in-law Beckie a very Happy Birthday.  She is celebrating her birthday today.  I hope she has a great one and a wonderful weekend!

Last March I wrote a blog about her and her birthday.  I realized that I wanted to say almost the same things to her and about her again as in this link.  So I decided to repost that link.  Hope you don’t mind Beckie!   https://patticates247.wordpress.com/2013/03/07/happy-birthday-beckie/

This is one of my favorite pictures of the two of us.  We were enjoying a lobster lunch together for her birthday celebration while at the beach.  We’d just had a family portrait taken so we were in similar outfits.  What a fun day.

I hope we can do that again sometime!  It would be such fun.  Love you Beck and hope to see you again very soon.

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Have a great Friday and weekend!  And don’t forget to spring your clock forward on Saturday night before bed, if you live in an area starting Daylight Saving Time this weekend.

March 6 – Chair / Throwback Thursday

POD_March.6_Chair-Hi and Happy Thursday!  Today’s photo challenge is Chair.  And, since it’s Throwback Thursday, I went with this oldie of me sitting on my Grandpa’s lap.

This chair was at a dear friend’s house and we were having fun visiting.  You can see we are both all smiles and his lap made another great chair for me. I like the color and how shiny the chair is, which is so perfect for the era.  Don’t see many like this anymore.  I can’t remember if it was a recliner or rocking chair or what exactly.

My Grandpa is the one who inspired this blog.  He was so very special to me and I still miss him very much. This was much younger than I remember him looking but it’s still the same smile and joy that he had of seeing his grandchildren.

The clothes are certainly circa late 60s, which is when I think this was taken.  I’ll have to ask my mom for the exact year. I really like Grandpa’s yellow shirt and his sweater.  And, my pink and white polka dot dress with matching hat are wonderful and such fun.  I still love to wear hats and often do.  They just don’t match so perfectly as this one did.

The same day this photo was taken, I sat on my dad’s lap.  It too is one of my favorite pictures.  I love to see these men who have always been so important in my life at a time that I don’t really remember.  Both old and new photos are very special to me. This one and several others I have are real treasures.  And, I love to hear the stories behind them from my parents and other relatives.

I wonder what other treasures I will find with my pictures?  I can’t wait to find out.  And, what interesting chairs I will come across?  Should be fun.  Have a great day!

March 5 – Something Beginning With I

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Wednesday!! Today’s photo challenge is Something Beginning With I.

I decided to go with Someone Beginning With I. And here he is, Ian.  This was taken when he was about 3 years old.  My short and sweet little guy.

This was the first time he had played in the snow and he absolutely loved it. Kirk used his shoes to write Ian’s name in the snow.  The fact that he stopped long enough for a picture was the icing on the cake! What fun times and fun memories!

Today I wanted to say a few things that I am thankful for about Ian and other items:

  • The ability Ian has to wake up each morning ready to make the most of the day. He inspires and delights me.
  • His bedtime story that he shared last night.  It was very good.
  • His creativity with Lego creations and building other toys.
  • His excitement about books and wanting to read with me.
  • His laughter when he is tickled by me or my husband.
  • His hugs and Eskimo kisses before school.
  • My husband/Ian’s daddy who I love so much.
  • My friends and family.
  • A foggy day that has been burned off by the sun.
  • Hot coffee and a sausage sandwich to eat with my antibiotic.
  • Medicines that, although taste terrible, are helping Ian and I feel better.
  • A hot shower to help get the day going.
  • The opportunity to go to church and a supper tonight for Ash Wednesday.

This is just a small list of what I am thankful for.  I like to take the time to remember these things, as it is important.  What are you thankful for?  I hope quite a bit.

I wonder what items I will see today that begin with I?  It should be fun to find out.   Have a great day!

March 4 – On My Mind

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Tuesday!  Also Happy Mardi Gras.

Today’s photo challenge is On My Mind. As you know, I have had several dear family members and friends on my mind lately.  It is tough when those you love are suffering.

I have been praying for them and have truly felt that the Lord is helping me, my family and friends, and other dear ones cope as best we can.  Not to say there won’t still be tough days, but I keep reminding myself, “God is in control.”

I decided to use this amazing photo of a sunset from December for my photo.  I was in awe of the wonder of nature and God’s beauty in His creation.  And, I realize that my dear ones are under God’s hands and that is an amazing place to be.

It is good for me to stop and take a look at the beauty and the colors of such a sunset and the starkness of these trees, before they will bloom again in the spring.  This also helps me remember that despite the pain and worry, life goes on and the world will keep spinning.  For me, there is some real comfort in that realization.

What is on your mind today?  I hope that with whatever is on your mind that you have a blessed and wonderful day!

And The Winner Is…

moviesThis is the phrase used many times last night prior to giving out Oscars.  It was a great celebration of the movies.  Last night I stayed up to watch the entire Oscars broadcast and am so glad I did.  It was a fun evening, although this morning I am tired since I didn’t sleep well and was up so late.

After the tough weekend and not feeling well, it was fun to laugh and enjoy the show.  Ellen DeGeneres did a great job as host and was funny without being too mean to anyone.  She just poked fun.  And the fact that she actually ordered pizza and then handed it out was great, as was the Twitter-crashing photo of her with some of the stars.

I was pleased with most of the winners and especially liked the musical performances for the nominated songs.  As usual U2 was great and performed their wonderful song really well, I enjoyed Pink’s performance with the different phrasing, and Bette Midler brought me to tears with “Wind Beneath My Wings.”  I have liked that song since “Beaches.”  The fact that so many winners were truly thankful was also really nice to see.

I also liked the fashions, including the fact that the men were more colorful with their tuxes, and the ladies wore some lovely gowns.  And, the acceptance speeches by and large were very well done.  It was nice to see so many people being so truly touched by winning.   How about you?  What were some of your favorites?

I have to admit that I hadn’t seen any of the nominated movies and hope to soon on DVD.  These all look amazing but we have been so busy with school, work, family time and friends, that movies often don’t get seen very often.  We’ll have to see some before the next award season starts.

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Today I wanted to write about the awards as well as a few of my Monday’s Musings.

**Hello and welcome to March!  This is the month when the time changes — next week already– when we spring forward and lose an hour.  I don’t like the loss of one hour of sleep but do like the fact that it stays lighter longer.

March is also when Spring begins!!!  Yeah.  The date is March 20 and I am so ready.  Not that it will be spring-like that day but I can hope.

**My son is back to school today and feeling better.  I now, however, am not feeling the best and that isn’t fun.  The fact I didn’t get much sleep last night doesn’t help.  Two nights ago, I slept nearly 12 hours and then last night, I kept waking up worried about the power going out and that Ian was okay.   Too much on my mind, I imagine.

Hopefully this week will be better and things will start to look brighter.  I have been praying a lot and am feeling love of family and friends as well as the Lord and the prayer support.  That is fantastic.

**May you have a really good week.  I am going to try to do the same.

In Your Mercy, Hear My Prayer

praying. handsThis has been a tough week.  As you know from my posting yesterday, I have some very sick relatives and a friend who are dealing with fighting cancer.  Each of these people means so much to me.  I hope and pray that they will receive the treatments that they need to get better.

The hard part is that one of them received a malignant diagnosis and this breaks my heart.  I talked yesterday about choosing to be as positive as I can be, but the pain is still there since it was such a shock to hear this news.  I hate to think of this special person no longer being in my life and I don’t want to.  However, I want to spend the time that I have left with this person and offer comfort and help and try to make the most of it.

As with any tough news, it takes a while to process.  This is one of those weekends.  I have also been thinking of a few friends and relatives who have lost loved ones recently or a milestone of that loss.  That too is heartbreaking.   To say goodbye is so hard and there is no right way to grieve.  I took a class in college that was incredibly hard to fathom at the time but I am so glad that I did.  It was about grief and the stages of it and that it can take a while.

Two things just came to my mind.  One was the best advice that I ever received from a dear friend.  He was a paramedic with more than 20 years experience and had seen it all.  I was a young professional just out of college and starting my first job.  This man told me “Never be a grave hugger.”  He meant to always tell your loved ones that you love them and to never leave something unsaid.   He knew only too well and had seen how precious life is and how fleeting.  This was truly the best piece of advice I have ever received.  Thanks to you GD!

The other was our recent sermon series at my church.  The pastor based it on the amazing Tim McGraw song, “Live Like You Were Dying.”   A few of the keys that our Pastor expanded upon were from the chorus, “I loved deeper, and I spoke sweeter, and I gave forgiveness I’d been denying.”   Aren’t those powerful words?  So important to remember and sometimes so hard to do.

We all get so caught up in the day-to-day of life and sometimes things that don’t really matter in the long run.  The times when we can share with our loved ones, tell them we love them and take the extra time to help each other are so very special and important.  May we all try to find the time to stop and smell the roses as it were.

Today, I want to say a pray for my friends and family who are suffering and sad and in pain.  And, I also want to pray for my son who is fighting bronchitis this weekend.  He is much better today and that is a real blessing.

“Dear Lord, please stretch out your healing hand upon those receiving treatment.  Please guide the physicians, nurses, and all involved in their care.  In your mercy, please hear my prayer.  (at church we say our instead of my, but I wanted to use my in this case)

“Help us, the families and friends of those suffering to be strong and help them through the darkest time.  May we be there to listen, pray, commiserate, give hugs and love, and help one another.  In your mercy, hear my prayer.

“May we take no moment for granted and spend the time with our loved ones as we can.  Help us to love and not be afraid to share that love. In your mercy, please hear my prayer.

“Lord, I also want to take this time to say thank you for all of the blessings you have given me and all of the times you have shown me how much you care for me and my loved ones.

“Thanks also for our dear and sweet son.  He is healing and getting back to himself by talking to me all day about his toys and interests.  He truly is an amazing blessing.

“May I learn to live my life as Ian does by enjoying every moment to the fullest and totally being in each moment. He has truly taught me so very much and I am so thankful for that.  Amen.”

May you too be blessed!