Favorite Movie EVER!!
Hi friends,

Tom and I are back from some needed time away and we have hit the ground running. While we were away I stole away to the front porch and watched scenes from my most favorite movie of ALL time.
Pride and Prejudice the 2005 version.
If you've never seen it I highly recommend you pop over and watch the shortest version ever.
It's in two parts and each one is only 10 minutes long.

What's your favorite movie?

Bombeck Advice
Hi friends,
I thought I'd share this with you while I'm at the beach with my sweetie pie.

(written after she found out she was dying of cancer).

I would have gone to bed when I was sick instead of pretending the earth would go into a holding pattern if I weren't there for the day.

I would have burned the pink candle sculpted like a rose before it melted in storage.

I would have talked less and listened more.

I would have invited friends over to dinner even if the carpet was stained, or the sofa faded.

I would have eaten the popcorn in the 'good' living room and worried much less about the dirt when someone wanted to light a fire in the fireplace.

I would have taken the time to listen to my grandfather ramble about his youth.

I would have shared more of the responsibility carried by my husband.

I would never have insisted the car windows be rolled up on a summer day because my hair had just been teased and sprayed.

I would have sat on the lawn with my grass stains.

I would have cried and laughed less while watching television and more while watching life.

I would never have bought anything just because it was practical, wouldn't show soil, or was guaranteed to last a lifetime.

Instead of wishing away nine months of pregnancy, I'd have cherished every moment and realized that the wonderment growing inside me was the only chance in life to assist God in a miracle.

When my kids kissed me impetuously, I would never have said, 'Later. Now go get washed up for dinner.' There would have been more 'I love you's' More 'I'm sorry's.'

But mostly, given another shot at life, I would seize every minute, look at it, and really see it . . live it and never give it back. STOP SWEATING THE SMALL STUFF!!!

Don't worry about who doesn't like you, who has more, or who's doing what
Instead, let's cherish the relationships we have with those who do love us.

Fabulous Friends
Hi friends and Happy Birthday to my baby sister!

Maria's not only my baby sister, she is my fabulous friend.
It doesn't matter that Maria is 10 years younger than me and that she lives a 3 hour plane ride away, we are fabulous friends.

We can always count on one another through thick and thin, times of rejoicing and times of difficulty and sorrow. She is gifted in so many areas and is always willing to share her gifts.
She and her husband Brandon have an incredible spirit of giving and they don't hesitate to give generously.

I wish each of you could meet and get to know my baby sister, you would just love her too!
So Happy Birthday Sissy, here's hoping your day is just as fabulous as you are.
For those of you wishing you had a fabulous sister, I want to introduce you to my sweet friends Karen and Amy. These friends are gifted and willing to share their gifts of writing. They also have the spirit of giving generously too.
They are the next best thing to a fabulous sister, they are fabulous friends.

I hope you will pop over and sign up for their Next Step writing services.
They are not just gifted and talented writers and communicators, they are some of my most
Fabulous Friends!!

What's Your Language?
Hi friends,

In yesterday's post I talked about finding your love languages and using them to strengthen your marriage. It's also a great tool for family dynamics, parenting your children, and working relationships.

I mentioned that my husband says I have 4 out of the 5 languages and if he only uses one a day with me, he's way ahead of the game.

I thought I'd give you the opportunity to take the test for yourselves.

For each pair of statements choose the one that fits you best. Try to answer every pair. If you are not currently in a relationship, try to imagine how you would like to be treated if you were.

I like it when you give me notes of affirmation.
I like it when you hug me.
I like to spend one-on-one time with you.
I feel loved when you give practical help to me.
I like it when you give me gifts.
I like taking long walks with you.
I feel loved when you do things to help me.
I feel loved when you touch me.
I feel loved when you hold me in your arms.
I feel loved when I receive a gift from you.
I like to go places with you.
I like to hold hands with you.
Visible symbols of love (gifts) are
very important to me.
I feel loved when you affirm me.
I like to sit close to you.
I like for you to tell me I am attractive/handsome.
I like to spend time with you.
I like to receive little gifts from you.
Your words of acceptance are important to me.
I know you love me when you help me.
I like to be together when we do things.
I like it when you say kind words to me.
What you do affects me more than what you say.
I feel whole when we hug.
I value your praise and try to avoid your criticism.
Several inexpensive gifts from you mean more to me than one large gift.
I feel close when we are talking or doing something together.
I feel closer to you when you touch me often.
I like it when you compliment my achievements.
I know you love me when you do things for me that you don't enjoy doing.
I like for you to touch me when I walk by.
I like it when you listen to me sympathetically.
I feel loved when you help me with my jobs around the house.
I really enjoy receiving gifts from you.
I like for you to compliment my appearance.
I feel loved when you take time to understand my feelings.
I feel secure when you are touching me.
Your acts of service make me feel loved.
I appreciate the many things you do for me.
I like receiving gifts that you make.
I really enjoy the feeling I get when you give me your undivided attention.
I really enjoy the feeling I get when you do some acts of service for me.
I feel loved when you celebrate my birthday with a gift.
I feel loved when you celebrate my birthday with meaningful words.
I know you are thinking of me when you give me a gift.
I feel loved when you help out with my chores.
I appreciate it when you listen to me patiently and don't interrupt me.
I appreciate it when you remember special days with a gift.
I like to know you are concerned enough to help with my daily tasks.
I enjoy extended trips with you.
Kissing me unexpectedly excites me.
Giving me a gift for no special occasion excites me.
I like to be told that you appreciate me.
I like for you to look at me when we are talking.
Your gifts are always special to me.
I feel good when you are touching me.
I feel loved when you enthusiastically do some task I have requested.
I feel loved when you tell me how much you appreciate me.
I need to be touched every day.
I need your words of affirmation daily.

Few Words, Big Pay Off
Happy Tuesday friends,

Do you know your Love Language? If you're unfamiliar with Love Languages, I would encourage you and your spouse read The Five Love Languages book by Gary Chapman.

Tom and I read this book years ago and it brought great clarity and strength into our marriage. When we realized why certain things matter to us as individuals and what things encourage us as individuals our marriage blossomed even more than it already had.

Tom says it's easy to feed my love language because I don't just have one love language,
I have 4 out of the 5. HA! Well... He's right. HA! HA!

I was reminded of this today when someone sent me an encouraging email and reading it caused my heart to just soar above my circumstances! Although her message was short, sweet and had only a few words, those few words had a big pay-off in my heart today.

So I want to encourage your heart today with a few words too...

Psalm 34:8
Taste and see that the LORD is

blessed is the man who takes refuge in him. (NIV)

And they're done!!
Happy weekend friends,

The last of the painters just pulled away from our home and we can enjoy the fruit of their labor in peace and quiet.

While "the Boys from Brazil" as Tom calls them did a remarkable job and were kind and gracious as they worked, I had no idea just how much I loved being in our home alone.
Could I be turning into an introvert? HA!!!!!!
Not a chance, but it has been quite an experience having 4-8 people in my home for 10 hours a day for more than a week. Even though I've been at work for the most part, it's still been an experience!

Oh well... that is behind us and now we wait a few more weeks for insurance to take the next steps in the renovation process.

I'm off to dance on every piece of furniture in celebration of a weekend without workers.
So, what are your plans for this wonderful and beautiful weekend?

An Expert Nose and A Winner
Happy Tuesday sweet friends,

I'm happy to let you know we have a winner in the latest drawing for my goodie gift bag.
I'll post the person's name at the end of this post.

Happy day indeed... the painters have left our home... for 2 days.
They will return on Thursday to finish up phase one.

The insurance field adviser arrives Wednesday afternoon to give the final word on just how much of our house has to be torn out and replaced. I would appreciate your prayers for God's guidance and leadership in this. We need this gentleman to have an expert nose in order to smell the smoke we smell in all the places we smell smoke in order to authorize the necessary steps to restore our home to it's pre-fire state.
Yes friends, I'll admit it... I'm anxious and fearful that our home will never be like it was.
The enemy keeps whispering "You'll never get the smell out of your house and when you try to sell it in the future... No one will want your smoke smelling house!" and I have listened.

Thank goodness today is a new day and God's mercy are new today as well!
I've put my pink earplugs in today (metaphorically speaking of course) and I'm singing "La, la, la, la, I can't hear you!" to my enemy today.

What about you friends, do you need to put in some pretty pink ear plugs in order to tune out the enemy today?

Lastly, here's the winner in our drawing today...

It's Amy, who posted
October 8, 2010 3:41 PM
I know what you're thinking that's Amy Carroll, from Proverbs 31 Ministries and you're right!
This was God's hand working to bless one of my sweetest friends.
Amy, send me your contact info and I'll get your gift bag in the mail to you. :-)
Keep posting friends... you never know when another give away will take place.

I'm Pooped!
Hi Friends,

After 4 days of mudding, sanding, priming and painting we are half way through the first phase of renovation.
The insurance field inspector arrives this next Wednesday afternoon to give the final determination if a total kitchen rip out and redo is warranted. Can you say 8-12 more weeks of workers in our home 10 hours a day? Good thing I have a job to go to across town.

This weeknd I spent hours mopping floors and wiping walls of wall dust as the painters followed me with their buckets, brushes and rollers. Good grief, this stuff is as pervasive as the smoke from our fire!

It's late friends, I haven't even had a bath today, my hair looks like something the bride of Frankenstein would wear and I have enough wall dust up my nose to fill a garbage bag. Okay, I'll admit it, I'm whining. There. I said it! Now I feel better.

This latest life experience is teaching me many lessons and I can't wait to share them with you in the coming weeks.

So... what life lessons are you learning?

I promise I haven't forgotten about the drawing for my latest goodie gift bag. The drawing will be Tuesday, so keep posting.

Sin Like Smoke...
I've just spoken to our wonderful and precious State Farm Insurance agent (Carolyn at Bill Neal's Office in Matthews, NC) about the progress of returning our home to it's pre-fire status.
Our conversation took place in the middle of stepping over plastic sheeting as the painters begin their task of mudding nail pops and nail holes (Sorry, I don't measure before hanging pictures and artwork from Good Will or Marshall's Home Goods), sanding walls and ceilings then painting most of the interior of our home.

The painters are her today because Tom and I have been saving for a l-o-n-g time in order to have the bedrooms, kitchen and hallways painted in our home. As the Lord would have it, this is the week we had contracted to do the work.

At this very minute I'm standing at our kitchen counter typing this post as the skilled men, or (Boys from Brazil) as Tom calls them walk on stilts balancing themselves and troughs of wall mud moving from room to room in order to cover every wall and ceiling imperfection.

The agent just mentioned to me that it's a possibility our kitchen cabinets might have to be ripped off the walls and replaced and most of the walls in order to get remove the smokey smell for good. WHAT?
Everyone who enters our home says they smell smoke mixed with convalescent home
(Not good).
I'm sure you already know this, but there are only two ways to rid your home of smoke... Replace or cover-up.
If you read my last post you'll see my opinion of the cover-up idea.

All of this has given me a clear picture of just how evasive and penetrating smoke can be.
Who knew a small fire could create such devastation?

Well, girlfriends, if smoke (even unseen smoke) can create such devastation to our home... just think of what sin (especially hidden sin) does in our lives.
Get where I'm going with this?

I'll cut to the chase as I'm being chased from the only "clear" space left...
I'm asking you to join me in examining the sin, especially the hidden sin in our lives.
Are you willing to take a l-o-n-g hard look at the sin in your life and the devastating effects is has in and on you life?

This is NO easy task friends and it certainly isn't something I'm prone to doing on a regular basis, but this life situation has given me reason to look at my spiritual life with a spiritual magnifying glass.

Will you join me in seeking out those hidden sins that affect every are of our lives?
I'd love to hear your thoughts on this.
And yes, each post will be entered in the drawing for my latest goodie gift bag.
Drawing to be in the next few days or as soon as I can find a clean surface to type on.

Each of you is a wonderful and marvelous creation and I am blessed beyond measure to share life with you.

Ephesians 3:20-21
Now to Him who is able to do exceeding abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.

Smells Like...
While it's been more than a month since the fire, my house still smells like smoke and NOW it smells like smoke and a convalescent home (this is in no way any negativity toward ANY convalescent home). The wonderful KLEENPRO team brought a second air "cleaner" while I was away last week helping my mom pack and move and it left this latest lingering odor.

The painters arrive tomorrow and I do hope their priming and painting will put an end to the unwanted smells.
so... what does your home smell like?

Don't forget to leave your posts here, I'll be drawing for the goodie gift bag soon.

And We're DONE!
Yippe and yahooooooooooooo!

Every item has been packed, loaded on the truck and all my mom's earthly belongings are headed out of the driveway!

I've swept the carport for the last time and eaten my last meal in the dining room.

I walked through each room and prayed for the new owners who will soon inhibit this space.
I prayed the Lord's hand of blessing on them, that they would experience all of the joy we did and none of the sorrow. That they would find Jesus as their very best friend and answer to all their prayers within the walls of this house.

Thank you my precious friends for your prayers. The last three days have been VERY difficult for my mom, emotionally, mentally, spiritually and physically. The Lord answered your prayers and sustained both of us through it all.

I have just arrived home and was welcomed with waiting arms by my sweetie pie.
It's the weekend friends and we're gonna celebrate tonight by doing laundry, and preparing to tailgate with friends at the
NC State football game tomorrow Go Wolfpack!!.
Can you believe it, I get to be in the car again tomorrow for 6 more hours.
Oh well.. at least I won't be driving and I won't have to pack any boxes. LOL

Enjoy your weekend, the song and your home.

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