Tuesday, January 30, 2007

Life is a Blessing

I can't tell you how many times my parishioners have amazed me. Today I am thinking of one woman in particular. While I was on vacation she became ill and got a very shocking diagnoses of cancer. The severity of the cancer was not known at first, but the amount of pain she experienced was excruciating. Within the span of three week she moved in with her daughter, her family emptied her house for sale, and she began treatment for a very aggressive form of cancer. When going to visit her yesterday, all I could think of was the losses she had experienced. Loss of independence, loss of privacy, loss of control. Yet, in her first words to me she expressed how extremely blessed she felt.

In church on Sunday we talked about praise. We are called to praise God, but it is not always easy to remember to praise God. A passage from 1 Thessalonians reads, "Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." One parishioner pointed out how praise comes more easily when things are either going really well or really bad. It is those times when life is just 'okay' that we forget to thank God for our blessings. It is understandable why we would praise when life is good, but why when things are difficult? Maybe because when life is at its worst we can appreciate the small blessings even more... loving family, a warm cup of tea, a comfy blanket that's soft on our skin.

Monday, January 29, 2007

Hitting the Waves

One of the fun things we did on our vacation was to try out the Wave Runner (Jet Ski) while we were on Labadee, Haiti. Gary signed up as the driver and I was the passenger. Gary was outfitted with a nifty little harness with handles, so I didn't have any trouble holding on. I admit that I was nervous about it at first, but it turned out to be great fun. We went quite a distance from shore and the waves were a bit choppy. Luckily we had a guide to give us a tour and bring us back to the dock. We got going to over 40 mph.

Here we are after the adventure. We will definitely have to do it again, although the Atlantic off Southern New England probably won't be as warm as the Caribbean waters!

More vacation posts to come....... In the meantime, life-as-usual has resumed, albeit with good vacation memories to sustain me through these cold winter days!

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

Home again, home again!

We are home safe and sound from our vacation. It is hard to believe it is over. Everything was wonderful... the ship, the ports, the food, the entertainment ~ and most of all, the time Gary and I got to spend together. It is all a memory now, but a very good memory that we will treasure for a long time.

Things are a bit hectic as we settle back into home, work and church. Catching up on e-mail was a formidable task all by itself! And the mountain of laundry we had was unbelievable! It was good to see the 'boys' and their furry faces. They couldn't decide if they were glad to see us or still mad that we left.

As things settle down over the next few days I will bore you with all the details and a few of the pictures from our trip. Meanwhile, I will try to stay warm as we have reentered the 'deep freeze.'

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Noooooooooooooooooo!


In three days we are setting sail for what we consider our belated 'Honeymoon.' Since we will be celebrating our 5th anniversary this year, I think we deserve a little vacation time, just the two of us! And yes, that means no pets will be joining us! This was Nicky's response when he heard the news. "Muma, noooooooo!"

Seven nights in the Caribbean for us means seven-plus nights for him at the kennel. Zeke gets to stay home, with our fearless friend Stephanie stopping by to feed and check on him. I assured both Nicky and Zeke that we will think of them often while we are gone! And if they believe that............

This will probably be my last post before our trip. When we get back I will have lots to share and hopefully some beautiful pictures of Caribbean sunsets to post. Hopefully I will also be de-stressed and a little bit sun-tanned. Be blessed!

Monday, January 01, 2007

Happy New Year

Happy 2007! So far our 2007 is off to a good start. Our Christmas travels were safe and our Christmas company has arrived safely to their homes. We had a wonderful holiday. Everyone in our family is doing well! In this peculiar mix of joy and pain that we call life, we are blessed. We are looking forward to the adventures that this new year will bring. And whatever happens, God is with us. For your new year's enjoyment, I have posted a picture of our beautiful sanctuary taken at our Christmas Eve service. May peace guide all our hearts in this new year.