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For the love of friendship I painted these. The name because as I looked at them they
reminded me of friendship. I have a wonderful friend who I truly call my best friend. I am unafraid
of what she will think of me no matter what I do or where I am. She is dependable like a rock. She has always given great advice and I am comforted by her words even when they are probley wrong. When my 
husband and I decided to go for a travel nurse assignment I invited her and even tho she said no...Well ! She 
loved Wyoming. She has protected me from bears and sat quietly in a chair with a good book while I fished because she hates fishing. We are both a little grayer and a little wiser but we are now and 
always will be best friends. She is a rock in my life, the kinda rock that turns out to be a diamond. 
Love you Gloria!


When You Feel Like a Nobody

When You Feel Like a Nobody
Today I got up and of course grabbed a cup of coffee and went to sit in my 
white sturdy rocking chair on my front porch. As I set there I contemplated about my life
and my blessings. For my Bible reading I turned to 2 Kings 5:2
It tells about a little maid who was taken captive out of the land of Israel against her will.

This peaked my interest. She was captive which tells me against her will and tells me
she did not ask or choose to be there. I am sure that she would have rather been at home and not in a strange land with the duties of a servant.  I don't know her name she was just a maid. A person
serving someone else. This little maid heard about a man called Naaman a mighty man of valour who 
had an incurable disease Leprosy. She said...Oh if  Naaman would just go to the prophet he could recover him of his leprosy. Naaman's wife told someone the words of the little servant girl. Naaman was sent to the King of Israel who tore his clothes saying I can not cure this man but the prophet instructed him of what he should do to be made whole.

In reflection....sometimes we think life is hard and that nobody cares about us or even knows
that we are alive. Sometimes life is difficult and we find ourselves in uncomfortable circumstances, In situations that we just want out of. Sometimes we are surrounded by self pity
 and pain and nothing will come out of our lips except crying and sadness. Just remember that just maybe
it is because you are the one who has been placed here for such a time as this. You are the one will give hope to the hopeless and who will stand up in the face of adversity and proclaim faith and encouragement. 
Maybe it is you who will do something which will affect or even change the life of someone you don't even know. Maybe you are the one who will change your world. 
Maybe when you feel like a nobody and no one even knows your name you are mighty in the eyes of God!


She Called Today

She Called Today
          Today as I drove home from work thoughts filled my mind. My daughter Julie is in the Marines on a ship somewhere in the world. It is hard not knowing where and even now my thoughts go to her. She has two small boys. Paul in Kindergarten, Logan in preschool. She is missing events in their life and you may say she chooses this. Well yes and no....Isn't everything a sacrifice. I am proud of her, thankful for her. Like so many other moms out there with children in the military the feeling is bittersweet. We miss family, even when she is home she is stationed far far away. She will be at Miramar in California when she gets back and I am in the lovely state of Alabama so even when she is here we can't have that closeness we would like. Like the pleasure of being able to visit each day, like watching my grandchildren grow up. I follow them with pictures,but for those times we do have together we enjoy every moment. We drink many pots of coffee and tell many tales. We get up early so we can just talk and when it is time to go we cry once again. We miss so much but we still love each other with an undying love. 
      Isn't life funny? She called today from a ship in the middle of some ocean...she called....Me her mom. So now I am happy once again and it will be ok until next time I hear from her.



Have you ever thought about death?  What does it bring? Death is so final, so distinct,
some people are afraid of it while others just wait for its foggy embrace. I have witnessed a
lot of people as they slip away to that other place. Some welcome it , some fight it. some families cry and are
torn apart, while others cling to each other and pass on the strength. I think for the most part older people have a hold on it. They don't seem so afraid, sometimes they wait for it like an old friend. They seem content almost anxious at times about dying but not about death itself, anxious to meet those who have gone on before. I have seen it time and time again as they grasp at the air for someones hand which I can not see. As they call out to mom or a husband or even children who have go on before. Bittersweet.
I remember as my dad lay dying he would reach toward the ceiling and say come on Jesus. He did not know us but that didn't matter for he was already headed for his destination. Memories are sweeter and the pain of his dying has become fainter even though the memories of him now bring a smile instead of tears. I feel it now as the moist tears fill my eyes once again but more now form sweet thoughts than bitter pain. Sometimes death is not so scary and yes sometimes we are ready.



As you know I am a nurse. I love my profession and it really does take
a special person to make it in this field. We go to school and study hard to
obtain our degree. We feel compassion and hopeless sometimes and both cry and
laugh on any given day with our patients. We take care of people from all aspects of life and we are affected
by both their sorrows and joys. The thing that bothers me is that people have who have
access to the wonderful world wide web think that they can google a symptom and immediately they
have the knowledge to make decisions and tell the Dr what test to order , what meds to give
and pretty much write their own treatment. Google supplies all the info in seconds which it takes us
years to study. We take pharmacology and microbiology, speech to learn to talk to people and
algebra so we don't make medication errors. We spend years of our life to learn to care for the needs
of others and we do stand by the oath also to do no harm. We are many times treated less than human.
Many people are mean and will report you at the drop of a hat. We really are treated like slaves.
I know this is not popular and many may not understand but I speak the truth. Nursing is hard, stressful
and many times nurses are abused. Throw working a shift when there is a full moon and that adds fuel to
the fire. People really are Crazy on a full moon. Now if you are reading this and have an encounter with a
nurse please go out of your way to be nice. If she is not in your room when the call light goes off please
realize that she may just be helping someones granny up out of the floor or cleaning someone who has
had an accident in the bed. She may be trying to talk someones grandpa into taking his necessary pills which
he is reluctant to take. She may be listening to someone who will not quit talking and let her leave. All of this while she may have 7 or 8 other patients who need and demand her at the same time. What I am saying
is that if she is not there when you need her remember that she is human too and can only be in one place
at a time. She may not be the lazy uncaring person you perceive her to be. She may be struggling to do a
good job and just overwhelmed by the task at hand. So please be gentle. Write her name in to recommend her and those cards and cookies really do make a difference. Maybe even send something in nice to acknowledge the nurse who was not your favorite. I work in ICU and have 2 patients at a time and my life is
pretty good but I see floor nurses mistreated and disrespected each day. Take a minute and say a nice word one of which is thanks.


My Mama Calls Me Sweetie

My Mama Calls Me Sweetie
I am one of many people across America who call their mom daily.
I have purposed in my heart not to let a day go by without hearing her beautiful voice.
Her hair grows whiter and her speech is soft and quiet.
Her laughter is like that of an angel. Her mind is sharp and that twinkle in her eye still flickers.
I call her, the phone rings and I hear that hesitation as she fumbles with the phone and then
Hello Sweetie, we talk and laugh and she says again bye Sweetie and I smile.
My mom is 86 she is as sweet as pie and spry as a whip. I love her beyond words.


For All of My Tomorrows

                   Yesterday I went to work sick and as the night progressed I got worse and worse.
I felt horrible. My cough was unquenchable, my fever was the kind that makes you
feel bad all over, and my nose ran like a fountain.
Of course no one would come in to relieve me so I had to stick it out.
I went straight to bed and finally fell into a restless sleep.
I thought to myself and what possible good could come of this?
As I pondered I was thankful to be alive. My nose being stuffy made me
remember to give thanks for the breath. My sickness made me to think about
my patients with cancer who will not get better and to their sickness there will be
no end. It made me think of those with respiratory disease who will not breath better
tomorrow.  As I rest in bed it made me to think of those who are in bed for life.
Those who won't be able to get up and go back to work in a few days.
It makes me to remember that even if I whine a little now tomorrow will
be better. I thank God for all my tomorrows.


In the Storm We Are Made Strong

Today! Yet another day to breath his name, another day to serve him.
I stand in awe at all the beautiful things he has done for me. Things which I don't deserve.
 A couple of years ago I tore my rotator cuff. I have never known such pain in my body and
in my soul. I hurt both day and night without relief. I was on a lot of pain medication and
took sleeping pills for a couple of months. I had to sit up to sleep.
I became angry with God. I prayed and no relief came.
I ask God to take the pain away yet day after day I hurt. I didn't care if I died.
I wanted to climb out of this darkness but wasn't able. I went to church and ask for
prayer but nothing seemed to help. I felt like I was deserted and no one cared.
Months went by and I began to crawl out of the darkness and little by little
day by day things got better. Today I look back and can say thank God for
the storm. I did not realize how venerable I was. I thought I was safe and secure
in my faith and my love for God and then at a moments trouble I gave up.
It taught me to stay closer to the throne. To pray more and never, never give up.
Through the storm we are safe in his arms. He never leaves us when we are down.
The only footsteps walking away are our own.
In the storm we are made strong.


The Barn Out Back

The Barn Out Back
I painted this today and wondered what kind of things hide in a barn.
When I think of barns I think of the thick sweet smell of hay. Then if you listen closely
the scurry of mice. Spiders may lurk there but not the nice kind like in Charlotte's Web.
It brings to thought my life. My soul to be more precise. What things have I allowed to be hidden there?
In the past few years I have allowed things like cobwebs to form in the corners. Many are hidden
in the crevices out of view from the people who know me. I haven't prayed enough. I have let
the burden of prayer for my family fall on someone else. I have put off fasting as I should.
I am Pentecostal by faith and I do believe in baptism in water in Jesus name
 and the infilling of the Holy Ghost . I was awakened to tears this morning as I had dreamed of my dad.
He died last year and in the dream there was an a man who I thought was an angel and he ask me
if I had witnessed to my dad. I awoke and thought I will call and talk to him now then I startled when
I realized he is gone. I will never have that opportunity again. Did I miss my chance? I can't remember.
I hope that from this point on I will not miss any opportunities. I want to pray more, to intercede for
those who are lost and to help those in need. I want God to clean my barn. I want him to make in me a new
creature. I want to be pleasing to my savior. I want to go to heaven but I want to take someone with me.



Winter makes me think of toasty things like hot chocolate,
warm coffee and campfires,
Winter makes me think about family and friends and birds in the brown
grass begging for food.
It makes me think of how lucky I am to sit in a warm house and the embrace of 
warmth as it encircles me from head to toe as I sit in front of the
fire and hear the inviting crackle of the flames.
Winter makes me think of home.

Winter makes me think of people on the street who stand around a
barrel to warm their freezing hands. It makes me think of gloves
with missing fingers and blankets filled with holes. It make me think of the cold, of bone
chilling dampness and loneliness. It makes me think of the hungry and those with
no one to care. It makes me think of soup kitchens and animals which shiver in the
cold rain. It makes me think of how blessed I am.

Winter is many things to many people.
This winter I feel God and know that I am special.
This winter I am warm.


World Peace

World Peace

Today I came face to face with hate, a vicious hate, a hate which cost an 18 year old boy his life.
I was reading my local paper and on the front page was the picture of a nice looking well dressed
young black man. His skin was smooth and youthful. His eyes crisp and clear. In the year of 1957
his life was deemed worthless. He was brutally murdered by unknown white men. I stood at the nurses desk as I read this. Tears welled up in my eyes and a rush of grief for someone who lost the ultimate. His name was Rogers Hamilton the county, Lowndes county in Alabama. Alabama the state which I call home. The state which I love.......
It went further that there are at least 60 cold case files in Alabama believed to be racially motivated.
It saddens me to my soul. How can we love yet not allow our love to reach across the color of our skin or eyes or if our hair is straight or wavy. My pastor has been preaching a series on tearing down walls and building bridges. Walls of racism, hate, alcoholism or anything else that destroys lives. How can we travel to Haiti, or Mexico, or Africa to lend help when there are so many hurting here. I believe we should help them but it should start here. If you can not sit or work or stand by someone of another race without thinking of them first as Black or White or Asian or Hispanic you should take a closer look within your heart. Are you prejudice???  Really ???  Are there walls there which you do not even recognize?   Lets help each other...
Let us be kind and helpful.  The other day I was at church , I reached in my wallet and noticed that I had $40.  I gave it to my pastors wife and told her to give it to someone in need. As I got to my truck on my way home I realized it was my gas money for the week. In fact it was all the money I had for the rest of the week. I almost panicked. Guess what I have not ran out of gas yet. Still I go to work each day and have not done without. I say this to say this. Let all of us reach a little farther. Let us dig a little deeper. Let us love a little more and as we look at ourselves this Christmas season let us be able to like what we see. Did God make just blacks, or whites or people of a certain race. No!  by all means no. He made us all and loves all equally. Our skin may be different but our hearts , our souls, are all the same color. If racism even flickers at all in you, pray that God will cleanse you and make you like him. That he will help you to love.........period.


The Day After

The Day After
Now I know where Thanksgiving  got it's name.
Thanking God that it is over. I know I must have gained
a dress size. I ate so much Turkey that I am beginning to gobble.
We had so many pies and treats that I still remember how great each
one was. We played Dirty Santa with ornaments and what fun. Of course
I did not win the one I wanted but my sweet Nephews wife gave it to
me after it was all over. I said Oh! I can't take this from you and she said
we only wanted it to keep anyone else from getting it. How sweet :(
I got to hug my strong handsome son once again and my daughter in law
did an outstanding job as a hostess. The children played and laughed and
we were thankful once again for all the fun, joy, and food.
Even the dog was happy. My mom had
such a good time at 86 years old. We got up this morning and it looked as if
a bomb went off during the night. As we packed up and was getting in the
truck for the long ride home we heard shouts coming from inside the house.
I went back to the house to inquire if something was wrong. My nephew
laughed and said No! I was just shouting to drown out the silence.

Thank God it it over till next year


Thanksgiving Givingthanks

Thanksgiving       Givingthanks

Today I sit here among family who are here and the thoughts of family who are coming and ponder what it is I am most thankful for. The first things that come to mind right now without much thought is family. From the ones who are stooped and need the assistance of a cane or walker to the youngest who can't function alone. I have to say that right here right now it is not money or a fine home or a nice ride. It is family. My daughters who love me as daughters should love their mom and call me often just to tell me that they love me. My son who loves me in his own way and who calls me and says the funniest things. It is my husband who I depend on and lean on in more ways than even I know. It is my mom who has supported me in many different ways all of my life and who I find pleasure being in her presence even now. It is my sisters who make me laugh and who I still like to be around. It is their children who I helped raise.  It is a brother who is strong and a steady influence in my life. It is even my dog who right now is in a crate in the corner watching the commotion of a loud family with children running to an fro. I am thankful for love and the comfort of belonging but most of all above all else it is the breath of life that I have been given by a God who is much, much bigger than myself. Who has put me here for such a time as this. For these things I am thankful and may I never quit givingthanks for even the simplest of things.  


Grizzly's Demise

This is a funny story yet painfully sad. Parental discretion is advised.

     It was a hot summer day in July. The deep south Robertsdale, Alabama was even hotter. My sister Sandy and I had gone there to visit my oldest sister Jeannie. As it happened Jeannie was sad as someone in her life had just died so she was quite tearful. We were doing all we could to cheer her up and make her smile.
     Jeannie is a gardener of sorts and always has the most beautiful flowers blooming throughout the yard.
She lived in a two story house and had a heavy wooden swing on the porch and this was our favorite place to visit. You could sit out there any time day or night and see something beautiful. Butterflies fluttered by, birds chirped, and chickens clucked. A cup of hot coffee was always welcome in the quiet country setting.
We sat and passed away hours reminiscing about happy times.
      Jeannie went inside and her giant black dog grizzly bounded around the house. Grizzly was one of many animals because Jeannie loved dogs, cats and birds, in fact when we would occasionally grow tired of our animals, not to worry she would gladly take them. Grizzly had belonged to my daughter Julie. Julie moved and could not have a dog so Aunt Jeannie inherited him. Grizzly had a thick coat of long hair and he smelled, well! he smelled like a long haired hot dog.
     We were standing out on the porch looking at the great outdoors when Grizzly bounded down the little dirt road to Jeannie's house and across the street. Jeannie walked out at about that time and I said to her, "You better call Grizzly, He is across the street." In a loud anxious voice she called " Here Grizzly, come on boy, Here Grizzly"  As we watched in horror Grizzly bounded back across the street. SCREECH, THUD,THUMP  and OH NO!  Yep you guessed it Grizzly gave up the ghost.
       We ran to the street with Jeannie getting there first. She picked him up and started carrying the 115 pound dog home. When we reached her we assisted her as she was hysterical with crocodile tears streaming down her face. She was so pitiful. We finally got home  and she informed us that we have to bury him. Jeannie lives on a farm with a pond and she picked out the most perfect spot overlooking the pond for him to be laid to rest. We gathered shovels and a pick ax and was about to dig the grave when we realized something bad. As I lifted the shovel above the earth and tried to sink it into the ground I heard a thud as my arms were jarred from the brute force. I looked at Sandy and in unison we said "SANDSTONE". Jeannie had went back inside to cool off and we just looked at each other for a minute while trying to decide what to do. We dug for seemingly an hour with sweat pouring off our brow in the 100 degree heat. Sandy looked at me as I was about to faint and she said "We can tie something to him and throw him into the pond, Jeannie will never know". Horrified, I went to look for some rocks. As we both doubled over with laughter we started back to digging. Finally 4 hours later we were able to put Grizzly to rest as Sandy's sons quoted the eulogy   "Ashes to Ashes, Dust to Dust, We loved Grizzly and Grizzly loved us.


As Autum Breezes Blow

Cool gentle breezes blow the brittle dry leaves indicating that fall is here.
The squirrels are frisky and leap from one branch to another, one tree to another
as they feel the freshness of the mountain air. They can sense that things are different.
The leaves are changing from a deep green to an array of many colors.
Red and Gold, Purple and Orange are seen across the hills starting at the top
and creeping down toward the valley as though an artist has painted each leaf.
Fall, the time of year when steps grow brisk and  children's laughter seems a little bit
louder, a little happier. I am reminded of the autumn of life. I had the privilege of listening
as a doctor told a story. My parents are getting older and the time has come that they need my help.
They took care of me all my life and now is my time to give back to them. He told us of parents
who gave him love, laughter and financial support. They live in Florida and he lives in Anniston, Al.
I am going to move them here. I am buying them a house and I will be sure at all cost that
they have what they need from now on. I believe that I saw tears in his eyes as he told the story.
I know you may think it is easy for him. He is a doctor and can afford this. I think of another
story similar in deed but this involves someone not so financially well off. It involves my sister.
Almost one year ago she opened her home to my parents. She is no doctor and was not able
to just buy them a home near her but she did something equally as noble. She moved them in with
her. Two people soon became four. Attitudes differed, personalities had to transform to become
able to accommodate the change. My mom cried, my sister cried, my dad cried. Sandy's husband Jimmy spent a lot more time outside. Since that time my dad passed over to the other side of the rainbow yet my
mom still remains in the care of my sister. Their lives are so different, more changed than even I
can comprehend. My mom who is the sweetest mom, the best mom in the whole world now lives
 in a new home. She left all that she had in this world and it wasn't easy.  Her hair is gray and her
hands are not as strong as they used to be. Hands which spent years helping others now need help.
As she tries to fix her long hair into the neat little bun my sister gently takes the brush and softly
brushes wisps of fine broken hair into the updo. This is a major feat because my sister has
short hair. She helps my mom to the store to shop as she tenderly pushes her in the wheel chair.
Mom can walk but she has fallen many times and it is safer this way. She takes her to the
doctor and makes sure she has all her meds but most of all she makes sure
that in the autumn of her life she can still have the happiness
she has been afforded by God above, a child who loves her. My mother has 4 children and we
all think she hung the moon. We all love her but as life would have it I work full time and my husband
is disabled. My brother works full time and takes care of his household. My sister Jeannie has a husband
who is not only disabled but bedridden. My sister Sandy quit her job as a nurse and made a tremendous
sacrifice. A sacrifice of love. So now as the air does become a little cooler and wind is crisp it makes me
remember to say a simple prayer. Thank God for love and family and that life doesn't really end with the
change of the seasons but it goes from joy to joy. It's makes me to know that autumn is beautiful in all arenas and that even as it changes slowly to winter with barren leaves and trees which become naked and stark in
the cold winter air life continues, also love and family, and the things which really do matter..


Something About Cats

There is something about cats. You either love them or your hate them.
I have never heard anyone say oh yes! I absolutely like cats.
I have always been a cat lover even tho I don't own one
now or rather I am not owned by one because unfortunately
my husband doesn't love them. He is a dog man.
As you know I am a nurse and have close encounters of the 3rd kind.
It was my pleasure these last few days to be privileged to care for a little lady
94 years young. Her hair is white and her beautiful pale complexion
accentuates her bright shining eyes. I leaned close to talk with her because
her hearing was not quite as sharp as her mind.
She had been telling me about the two cats who love her.
She cares for them daily and she loves them back.
Here in the hospital she said how she must hurry home to care for them.
It dosn't matter that she is sick  her cats need her.
Today she was told that she must go to rehab for 21 days.
Suddenly the twinkle left her eyes as they became misty.
What is wrong I ask, rehab will be good for you and you will
return home soon. She looked straight into my eyes and with a
sad quiet voice said "But what about my cats?" Her niece assured
her that her cats would  be taken care of but to her no one could
love them like she loves them. That is the thing about cats, they
hug up next to you and steal your heart and make you dependant
on them. You see, they don't really need you. It is the other way
around. There really is just something about cats.


Pumpkin Latte

Pumpkin Latte

I am not one who usually enjoys sweet coffee like drinks,
Those specialty creamers now available in most grocery stores
do not bring me joy. My co-workers cherish it. they can't wait for more,
but me I prefer plain old coffee with just a little creamer and a touch
of sweetness added.

Every Fall there is a wonderful thing out there called Pumpkin Latte
My heart does grow faint thinking about it and even now my mouth becomes
moist and a smile eases across my lips at the thought.

I must have it. The thoughts won't end. I pass by Starbucks because
I seldom afford myself this luxury. $4 for a drink is just too much yet
as I drive by I find myself turning in. I pull through the drive through
and order. As the coffee artist hands me my purchase I thank her and
turn my attention to the task at hand. As I sip the warm brew I savor the
sweet spicy flavor and feel myself relax. A horn blows in the distance
and wondering why I realize it is not in the distance at all. I forgot to leave.
It is the car behind me wanting anxiously to be next. I am sure that their
drink of choice must be a Pumpkin Latte.


Small Among Millions

I am only a small person among countless millions,
I live in a comfortable home on a quiet street,
I see the warm glow of the sun filtering through my kitchen window
as I sit and have my first cup of Joe. I contemplate the day ahead, 
I plan out the course of my time, of  the people I will
see of places I will go, of the things I will accomplish.
I listen for the sounds of my husband stirring in the
next room where he is still sleeping.
I savor each moment, each breath, each thought,
realizing just how blessed I am to be here, alive
on this beautiful day, beautiful even if it were raining,
I am chosen by God to be here, at this time in
this place, for this purpose.
Under my breath I say a prayer, a prayer only myself and
God hears. I thank him for the blessings of my life.
I talk to him about life and events that have impacted me,
about things that will change my life forever,
I look out the window and see the dawning of the morning
and with a smile and a gentle sigh, I leave it all in his hands
knowing that whatever comes my way will be according to
a divine plan. I pray that as a potter molds the soft pliable
clay that I will relax and let him mold my life as he makes
me into a beautiful vessel. A vessel used for his purpose.
I am only a small person among millions but I am his person
and I am blessed.



There she was, so fragile sitting in that hospital bed. Her hair gray except for the very tips which were washed out brittle red. Her skin was pale with all the pink tones now gone. She was like a ghost resting there among the sheets and blankets. She tells of a good life. For ninety two years she has enjoyed her health, her family, her home. And now here she is with us. Pneumonia and congestive heart failure have finally brought her low. Her fluids are restricted and we tell her what to do. Keep that oxygen in your nose. Stay in bed. No you can't have anymore water. On and on for days she listens. Each time I come into the room she begs in a birdlike voice. Water, that's it just one simple word, water. As I lean in close to explain once again, no you can't have any water. You have to much fluid and it stresses your heart even farther. In her 92 years of wisdom and knowledge she looks deep into my eyes and with a crystal clear sureness she says to me. When I get to heaven I will have all the water I want. I will look for you and we will drink tall glasses of cold wet clear water. Well! what can you say to that. I went straight to the bedside table and poured her some water in one of those little pink cups which are standard for any hospital visit. As I lifted it to her parched lips she sighs and says once again in that little bird voice Aah! Water.


Safety at Sea

As a ship upon the oceans sail its tossed both here and there,
A storm comes up the winds they blow the sea becomes a snare,
Will it stand, or falter fast upon this raging tide,
It's steadied now on quieted seas, The makers hands the guide.
My ship it sails on tides of pain of deep and dark despair,
Yet when I feel like falling low his arms I know are there,
He picks me up, he holds me close, he'll never let me go,
I know the master of the storm, He loves me this I know,
As a ship upon the oceans sail it's tossed both here and there,
I worry not about my life because I'm in his care.