For a few very hard years this word was my mantra.
The word means
-undismayed; not discouraged; not forced to abandon purpose or effort
-undiminished in courage or valor; not giving way to fear
But the truth is, I was often dismayed by everything that had taken place, and I did battle discouragement. I battled fear and doubts. I hurt and was angry, and sometimes "undaunted" sounded more like a mockery than a mantra, and I was determined to be real about all of it in these posts, thus the name, Undaunted Reality. More than that, though, I was determined to live undaunted, not because I'm so great or strong, but because my God is, and no matter what this world looks like, He is the only reality that matters.
I pray I live the reality of Him beautifully undaunted.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Know What I Mean?

I am reconsidering this post. I'm pondering and praying, and I'll get back to you on it.

For the beautiful and kind comments, thank you. You are so very appreciated!

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Marines Spread the Gospel--in Need of Prayer

Seems some Marines are in much need of prayer. I picked this up from Yahoo.

Marines pass out Gospel verse to Iraqi Muslims

By Jamal Naji and Leila Fadel, McClatchy Newspapers Wed May 28, 8:00 PM ET

FALLUJAH, Iraq — At the western entrance to the Iraqi city of Fallujah Tuesday, Muamar Anad handed his residence badge to the U.S. Marines guarding the city. They checked to be sure that he was a city resident, and when they were done, Anad said, a Marine slipped a coin out of his pocket and put it in his hand.

Out of fear, he accepted it, Anad said. When he was inside the city, the college student said, he looked at one side of the coin. "Where will you spend eternity?" it asked.

He flipped it over, and on the other side it read, "For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life. John 3:16."

"They are trying to convert us to Christianity," said Anad, a Sunni Muslim like most residents of this city in Anbar province. At home, he told his story, and his relatives echoed their disapproval: They'd been given the coins, too, he said.

Fallujah , the scene of a bloody U.S. offensive against Sunni insurgents in 2004, has calmed and grown less hostile to American troops since residents turned against al Qaida in Iraq , which had tried to force its brand of Islamist extremism on the population.

Now residents of the city are abuzz that some Americans whom they consider occupiers are also acting as Christian missionaries. Residents said some Marines at the western entrance to their city have been passing out the coins for two days in what they call a "humiliating" attempt to convert them to Christianity.

In the markets, people crowded around men with the coins, passing them to each other and asking in surprise, "Have you seen this?"

The head of the Sunni endowment in Fallujah , the organization that oversees Sunni places of worship and other religious establishments, demanded that the Marines stop.

"We say to the occupiers to stop this," said Sheikh Mohammed Amin Abdel Hadi . "This can cause strife between the Iraqis and especially between Muslim and Christians . . . . Please stop these things and leave our homes because we are Muslims and we live in our homes in peace with other religions."

" Iraq is investigating a report that U.S. military personnel in Fallujah handed-out material that is religious and evangelical in nature," said Rear Adm. Patrick Driscoll , a U.S. military spokesman, in a statement e-mailed to McClatchy . "Local commanders are investigating since the military prohibits proselytizing any religion, faith or practices."

In interviews, residents of Fallujah repeated two words— "humiliation" and "weakness".
"Because we are weak this is happening," said a shop owner who gave his name as Abu Abdullah . "Passing Christianity this way is disrespectful."

"The occupier is repeatedly trespassing on God and his religion," said Omar Delli , 23. "Now the occupier is planting seeds of strife between the Muslims and Christians. We demand the government in Fallujah have a new demonstration to let the occupier know that these things are humiliating Islam and the Quran."

The controversy over the coins that Iraqis said some Marines are passing out comes on the heels of a tempest triggered by a U.S. sniper who used the Quran, Islam's holy book, for target practice. The sniper was pulled out of Iraq after tribal leaders on May 9 found a Quran with 14 bullet holes and graffiti on the pages.

In Islam, the holy book is never to touch the floor, let alone be defaced. Iraqi leaders condemned the actions, U.S. generals apologized and President Bush offered a personal apology to Iraqi Prime Minister Nouri al Maliki .

In Fallujah , Mohammed Jaber saw one of the coins and said he thought of the bullets lodged in the Quran, the torture of Iraqi men at the Abu Ghraib prison in 2004 and the rape of a 14-year-old girl and her murder and that of her family in Mahmoudiya.

"Now we have this missionary way by these coins," he said. "We feel the Muslims are weak and we hope that we will reach a point when we are strong to let them know what is wrong and what is right. "

Naji is a McClatchy special correspondent in Fallujah .

Sunday, May 25, 2008 this time of the morning today

at 6:00 am after going to bed at midnight after working all day either touching up paint, putting down base boards, caulking the baseboards, helping put down laminate, baking cookies for Anna's Children's Church teacher, taking pictures at a graduation, and picking up felt to sit the furniture on. I put in that information because when I am fully awake and not tired I may have different answers, but right now...

Wendy tagged me with this a while back, but the house had to be addressed first. The storm woke me up, and this is how I am using my time. :-)

So at this moment, under these circumstances, this is me.

I am.....ready to hide out with God for hours and hours, maybe even days and be renewed.
I want..... to quit being annoyed by people who are being used by the enemy to aggravate me. I want to simply hand them back to God and move on without dwelling on them.
I have..... an amazing family. My husband is all-around wonderful, and my children are amazing.
I wish..... I don't believe in wishing, but I pray for my children to never have hard hearts, to seek God all the days of their lives, and to be completely enamored and sold out to the greatest Lover of all time. I also pray that for Rob and myself. My prayer right now for me is, "Give me the wisdom to get out of the way so you can be as big as you want to be and never be held back because my dreams and imaginings are not as big as you are."
I hate..... when I have whimpy faith or none at all.
I miss..... I can't think of anything. To miss something implies it is over and gone. At first, I thought about having coffee with my dad on cool mornings sitting on the front steps of their home looking out across the creek bottom, but in the last six months or so, I've quit missing that and started looking forward to see him again when he isn't sick, his heart isn't heavy, and his spirit isn't broken. I'm looking forward to seeing him whole. We are going to have so much fun.
I fear..... God being limited by my faith.
I feel..... sleepy right now, ready to be done with the remodel, a bit overwhelmed at what is still to do, thankful we can do it, ready to have time with my husband and children, excited about what the Lord is bringing to life.
I hear..... Fred sighing, cars outside.
I smell..... nothing. The dust has me horribly clogged.
I crave..... huh...can't think of anything right now.
I search..... for the bigger picture from God's perspective and His wisdom on how I fit into it and what I am to do along with wisdom to teach my children, be a great wife, and write what will heal people's hearts.
I wonder.....too big of a question at this time of the morning and my level of sleep.
I regret..... well, I regret a lot of my adolescence. Mostly, I regret believing what others told me about my limitations, failings, and lack of value and impact.
I love..... rain, snuggling my son, being spoons with my husband, listening to my daughter sing, sunrises on the beach, and laughter.
I ache..... because crawling around caulking baseboard is hard on the knees and back and my hand is tired of hammering. I didn't know my hands could ache this much for this long. What happened to conditioning of muscles?!
I care..... I really do simply care.
I always..... feel better when I've been in God's presence.
I am not..... sure I'm going to make it through this. I'm sinking fast.
I believe..... God is bigger than we realize or have the courage to acknowledge, and I believe we minimize Him out of our own desire to preserve our comfort zones and lives. If we truly believed He could move a mountain, raise a dead person, or fulfill His promises to us, we could not live as though our lives were our own and mediocrity actually worked.
I dance..... in the rain with my children, to country music and swing music with my husband, and just because I love it.
I sing..... that's as simply truthful as it gets. I sing.
I cry..... when we watch It's a Wonderful Life, when I am overwhelmed with joy or grief, when my heart hurts, when I realize how much more God wants to do than I've allowed.
I don't always..... think about the impact small actions and words have--both positive and negative.
I fight..... mediocrity and small-mindedness.
I write.....for the same reason I breathe. If I didn't, I would die.--Isaac Asmiov
I never..... have been tempted to suck a boiled crawdad's head.
I listen..... to different kinds of music. In my easy care CD case, I have classical, hymns, country, blues, and Coolio's "Gangta's Paradise".
I need..... God. Desperately. Probably more than I realize.
I am happy..... To me, to be able to simply say that much is huge. After battling depression, the lies of having no value or purpose, and feeling like I was an utter failure with no hope of being anything else, to have the joy of saying, "I am happy," means I embrace God's purpose and definition of me. He alone gets to say who I am and why I'm here, and He says I am invaluable because I was made with precision for a specific person. To know God loves me, enjoys me, and always stands for and with me is the happiest thing of all.

There you go. Those are the "dark-thirty" answers on this given day under these given circumstances (being sleep deprivation, mental fatigue, and questionable state of consciousness). If you get a chance, play. Leave a comment and let us know you are playing because we want to find out about you. More than that, though, if you really think about these things, YOU might find out something new about you, and who knows where God will take you in your new knowledge.

Coming Back to Life

Some of you may have heard about Val Thomas. If you haven't, take time to read about her. I sent the link out to my personal email list. This is what I wrote.

If you don’t read this and tell others, your life won’t change. Your friends won’t know any different. The world will not be altered in any way. In fact, if you don’t forward it, nothing at all will happen.

I want to see what happens if I do.

If I forward it and one person’s faith is increased…one person believes for more…one person has the courage to pray for the unthinkable…what will happen then? I want to know.,2933,357463,00.html

Praying we all have faith to see the dead come back to life...

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Steven Curtis Chapman Family

Please keep the Steven Curtis Chapman family in your prayers. If you have not heard, his daughter Maria, 5, was killed today. The Chapman's teenage son did not see her in the drive way and ran over her with an SUV.

While the family needs prayer as they grieve this horrible loss, I plead with you to hold this young man up in prayer, not just now but any time in years to come when he comes to mind or you hear about such a tragedy. He needs God so much. Only the Lord will get him through this.

Thank you for being a people of prayer.

Five Kind Things

Tonya tagged me with this meme, and I am going to try to keep this going!

The Five Kind Things Meme works like this:
List five kind things you do for yourself.
List five kind things you do for your closest friend, partner or child.
List five kind things you have done for a stranger.
Have fun!
Tag five people.

Five things I do for myself:
1. Quiet time on the deck in the morning.
2. I write.
3-5 I'm still working those out.

List five kind things you do for your closest friend, partner or child.
1. I listen.
2. With the children, I do art. It is one of their favorite things.
3. For Rob, I work out ways to go to opening days movies. If I absolutely can't go, I work it out so he can.
4. For my son, I transplated all the flowers from my flowerbed, and we planted beans and peas instead.
5. I send cards and emails that tell them they are valuable.

List five kind things you have done for a stranger.
1. Picked up a young man on the side of the road because I truly felt led to do so, took him to get a gas can with gas, and returned him to his car. I made sure the car started, and he was safely on the road before I quit following him.
2. Years ago, I was on my way home in a heavy rain storm from college after a night class, and I saw headlights pointed the wrong direction. A woman had hydroplaned and slid into a ditch. She was fine. I took her home. She called my folks to let them know why I was running late, so they wouldn't worry. I have always thought that was so considerate of her.
3. I open doors for parents with children and strollers, and I grab the front of strollers and help parents carrying them down stairs. If you've ever had to "bump" a sleeping baby down stairs because there was no ramp or elevator, you know how precious a hand holding the frong level for a smooth ride is.
4. I've given water bottles and snacks to parents whose children needed them at the park.
5. I saved a cat from some dogs. :-)

Things I do for fun:
1. Walk in the rain.
2. Build sandcastles on the beach to see how long it takes for them to be washed away.
3. Take pictures.
4. Play games with my family.
5. Take C&W dance lessons with my husband.

Five people to tag:
1. Jennifer
2. Robin
3. Wendy
4. Linda
5. Natalie
All of their links are on my blog roll. Even if they don't do the meme, it's worth your time to check them out. Ladies, if you do the meme, let us know in the comments section, so we can check it out!

Friday, May 9, 2008

Friends--Life's Great Reward

Jan gave me a lovely award, and it is so appropriate for all of you.

For being precious friends...

Who Gets to be Right?

For the last six weeks or so I've been under a cloud. Actually, it's been more than a cloud. It's been a pretty steady downpour of criticism and rejection from lots of ample sized clouds that seem to never move off my radar.

I shared some of the frustrations of my homeschool loop, but that isn't all. I've struggled with some prolific criticism of my writing from a one particular person, and there have been a few potshots that have left me with some flesh wounds. :-)

I have chosen not to say anything because really, there is nothing to say. There is nothing anyone could say to make me feel better. It isn't about those people, and I know that. In a recent post to said homeschool group, I stated that others only affect us where we have a wound or something in need of healing.

I've written about healing before, and I believe it is God's desire to heal all sickness, whether that be physical, emotional, mental, or spiritual. If that is true, then I have to wonder why healing doesn't happen. One answer I have found to be true is that we sometimes do not receive the healing offered us.

I have not received the healing offered me, and thus, I have spent weeks sick at heart.

One of my recent posts asked the difference between judging and opinions and whose opinion gets to be right? A lot of people seem to have the opinion that I talk just to hear my head rattle. They feel I have nothing of importance to say, and they believe I simply talk so I can have the last word. Some feel I am too verbose, too descriptive, and too flowery in my writing. Simply put, those folks do not think too highly of me, and they don't seem to think I have much-if anything-to contribute. That is their opinion.

Their opinions hurt.

There. I said it. I don't like criticism. I don't like conflict. I don't like being told I'm unimportant and have no value. I don't like hearing people tell me that my gifts aren't treasured or worthy of value.

However, those people are entitled to their opinions, and their opinions of me aren't very high.

On the other hand, I know so many of you, not just on this blog but through personal emails and friendships, and you have your opinions, too. You've shared them through birthday cards, sympathy cards, emails, your own blog entries, and phone calls. Your opinion is that my writing makes sense, shares Truth, and impacts people. Your opinion is my gifts are treasures with great value to make a difference. You have extremely high opinions of me.

So if their low opinions hurt so much, why don't your high opinions heal so much?

Because sometimes I don't have the sense to embrace the healing held out to me. Sometimes I don't have the sense to recognize the most valuable opinions come from the people who are most valuable to me--the ones who hold my heart tenderly and speak Truth with kindness in their eyes even when I don't want to hear it, the ones that laugh with me, cry with me, listen to stories about my children and ooh and aah at the right times. The valuable people are the ones I can be real with, and they find it endearing.

So, my beloved ones, I am so sorry I did not receive the healing you've held out so faithfully. I have thankfully come to my senses. Granted, it's still raining, and there will always be a cloud around, but I think back to splashing through the puddles rather than sitting in them.

Thank you for being the opinionated bunch you are. I think you are wonderful. Granted, it's only my opinion, but I'm convinced I'm right.

Monday, May 5, 2008

A Sister in Need of Prayer

We have a sister in need of prayer. Wendy's beloved left for Iraq today. He will be home 15 months from now. I've never had to watch my husband and the father of my children leave for a war zone. I cannot imagine the emotions, and even if I could, it doesn't matter. Today Wendy hurts. Her young son hurts.

Please visit her blog regularly to encourage her, but more than that, add Wendy, Corban, and Greg to your prayer lists.

Wendy listed a few concerns:
--Greg's safety
--Corban's adjustment
--Her heart
--Hers and Corban's safety
--Christian men to bond with and support Greg

On behalf of our sister in Christ, I thank you for your prayers and support.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Amazing Grace

Last week a lady on one of my email loops commented that she hates when people use bad grammar and spelling in emails or posts to the loop. Several ladies responded with grace and suggested she consider that emails and posts are usually quickly typed communication of thoughts and not reviewed or formal correspondance.

In the course of the thread, there was conversation about pet peaves and weaknesses and the honesty of imperfection. For some of us, we interpreted the new direction as just general topic. Then somone--a woman of God with discernment and wisdom--interrupted and suggested we consider the impact of our ongoing conversation on others' feelings.

I reacted to her words with sarcasm and rejection. Not one of my finer moments. In fact, it was just flat ugly. Then I decided not to send the reply. However, in a moment of shock and shame, I saw my little cursor click on the "Send" button, and in a breath, the email was gone, unretrievable. At first I stared, mortified, at my computer screen. Then I put my head in my hands and cringed.

My response was horrible. It was shameful, and it was gone.

I don't know how long I sat there before I composed another email. An apology, and I typed and prayed the Lord would give the woman the heart to forgive my reprehensible comments.

The next morning, I sat outside having my quiet time, feeling ashamed. How could I be so...ugh? And as I sat there wallowing in pathetic-ness, I felt the Lord so close to me, and He said, "People will learn from you." Honestly, that is very honoring, but I'm hoping someone can learn from me without my having to do a Peter impersonation as an object lesson.

I tried to focus on my prayer time, but I wasn't sure how the woman of God had reacted to my email, and I didn't know when she would get my apology, and I didn't want her under the cloud of my stupidity. Fainlly, I checked email...and found a reply. She had graciously forgiven me, offering her own apology for her words. We were okay. I was relieved to be forgiven for being a stupid heel.

Because the offense had been public, I felt it appropriate to apologize publicly, and her response was public. The Lord restored peace for all to see, and I was so thankful. Maybe somone would learn from it.

Then I got another email, actually everyone on the loop did. An incredibly gracious woman complimented us on resolving our conflict and blessed us for it. She said some very nice things. I was stunned and so humbled. Humbled to be used by God. Humbled to be called godly by apologizing for something I should never have said. I don't know that "humble" even describes it. I don't know how to describe it. It is an amazement beyond words.

Over the next few days we had a few discussions about opinion and jugment, and I referred to the situation between the woman of God and myself. I hoped it would be an obvious example of two people with good and well-meaning hearts who have ugly moments and choose restoration over offense. I hoped it would demonstrate the importance of God's working in us to show Himself when our humanness is far too obvious.

I don't know if it did or not. I hope so.

Then tonight I returned home from a birthday party with the children and checked my email. I had another email from the woman of God who gave a solid word of correction at the right time, and she apologized again for any hurt she caused. It was so sincere, and I replied to assure her that we are fine, and we are. I admire her and her heart.

Then, I got an email from her that just...I just started to cry. Her words were so kind, so life-giving, so affirming and so gracious, so undeserved. I just started to cry. I'm crying now as I write about it.

In a tender voice, the Lord spoke to me. "You've asked me to give you understanding about the difference between performing well and grace. This is grace."

Grace. The life and blessing I surely don't deserve given by the very person I offended.

Yes, that is grace, and honestly, it is still more than I can understand, but I receive it with deepest gratitude, and I am thankful for the woman of God who had the heart to show me exactly what it looks like.

Honored to be her sister in Christ...

Saturday, May 3, 2008

An Amendment to my Opinion

This morning I’ve considered my post on opinion and judgment, and while I stand by it, I made a statement that I think needs clarification.

I said when others’ opinions turn to personal offense on my part, it is often because I have a hurt that needs a touch by the Lord. I do not think that hurt has to be some deep wound from childhood or any other time in life. Sometimes the hurt is simply from the day. It could have been that my husband hurt my feelings or my children decided they did not need to be respectful and honoring. It could be something as inane as a cashier’s attitude at the store that spilled over onto me.

My response to others typically is far more about the other people and situations or events in my life than it is the actual person. I’ll explain what I mean.

Email has no tone. They are simple words. There is no intonation, no body language. How I translate emails and electronic posts is based on my personal mental and emotional filters. I have been at a point where I took everything as rejection and criticism. Thankfully, I’m not there anymore. However, I still go through time spans in which I do, and it really has nothing to do with the post or email. I know this because I have taken some folks jokes (with smiles attached) and turned them into barbs that were most assuredly aimed at me. In my lucid moments, I know those people’s hearts. I know they are not vindictive, and I know their comments weren’t aimed at any person in particular. However, my emotional and mental state is not always lucid, and it isn’t about the person or even their comment. It really has to do with what I am dealing with personally. If I’ve had a rough day with my writing critique group, I’m more likely to take things as rejection. If I’ve had a day where folks let me in the lane of traffic I needed or people at the store were nice, I’m more likely to have grace.

On bad days, I do need a healing touch from the Lord. I need to be alone with Him for Him to speak truth and love or correction so I can repent and make peace. I need to just be still, resettle, and get perspective. I also need to leave all emails and posts that evoke negative reaction until later. I have NEVER regretted not responding with anger or sarcasm.

On the flip side of this is the reality that sometimes folks react to my emails or posts with claws out and teeth bared, and it isn’t about me. Sometimes they’ve had a bad day. Sometimes their husbands hurt their feelings or their children didn’t honor them. Sometimes they have bad cashiers, too. While my first reaction may be (and too often is) to jump back at them, I have found if I take time to pray about it, the Lord will soften my heart and remind me to see their heart, not their actions. Maybe I don’t have any prophetic insight into their lives, but I have grace to respond with a heart of reconciliation and restoration. I have seen many people do this very thing, and when they do, they are the touch from God that offers healing. And that is a tone that translates well no matter what the day has been like.


My Opinion on Judging

I am part of a homeschool email loop, and I find it pathetic at how often folks who share their opinions are accused of judging. It is prevalent in society, I know, but really, do we truly not have the right to dislike something without being called judgmental?

Anyway, I wrote a post for the group. I figure it'll end up with a bunch of holes from the fire it draws for the simple reason my saying I pray for Hilary Clinton got me called an "ungodly Communist". If praying for my enemy makes me a Communist, I don't know what suggesting grace makes me.

At any rate, I am posting it here. I am not longer naive enough to think everyone will agree or that my writing will alter everyone's world and make them agree with me. However, hopefully, it will make folks think, and ultimately, it will lead them to seek God on a topic. Only good things can come when folks seek God because when they seek Him, they will find Him, and then, He can do amazing things.

Feel free to share your opinions.

My post:

Okay, so someone posts on here that she can't stand when people do not use proper grammar. Some folks agreed. Some said they didn't think it mattered. I thought it was a simple exchange of opinions. Then someone responds with a personal comment about critiquing others, which to me, implies that someone was judged.

This has happened a few times in different threads, and I find it frustrating and confusing how we go from opinion to "don't judge". Why is it that if I don't agree with someone it is judging? Why am I not entitled to my own opinion? And what makes their opinion right and mine wrong? Maybe, they are the one judging me?

The only thing I can think of is when people expect a higher level of moral, academic, or behavioral behavior than we exhibit or feel is necessary, we become defensive and deem them as judgmental because we feel they are rejecting us. I say "we" because I can react defensively when I feel others reject me as well.

However, I think when I respond that way, I am as guilty of judging as I assume the other person is. I judge that person to be proud and arrogant. I judge that person's heart to be one of rejection. Sometimes I am right, but sometimes the person is simply sharing their opinion.

Frankly, I've found that even when I am right, it usually isn't about the other person. Usually, if another person's opinion bothers me, it is about me. Typically, it means there is some hurt that needs the Lord's touch. Perhaps that is the line when opinion crosses into "judgment".

Don't misunderstand. I know there are times when judgment is a clearly stated rejection of a person or group of persons and/or their behaviors, but most of the time, it is simply folks who don't like other folks' opinions and take them as a personal offense. Most folks would agree that judging is ungodly, but is taking offense at another's opinion less so? Aren't both of the enemy? Both bring divsion. Both harden people's hearts toward other people. Both are in direct opposition to what Christ taught.

I dislike Abeka or Saxon. My dislike is intense. So, are you folks who use those judging me because I don't, or do you just have a different opinion? I tend to think you just have a different opinion. I think we could have coffee and let our children play and get along fine without either of us feeling rejected or judged. Maybe I'm too idealistic, but I think we could.

That makes me wonder why opinions, which are usually just harmless statements of thought, are twisted and called judging, and I'm wondering why it is so prevalent among Christians.

I've wondered this several times before, and this time, I decided to share my wonderings. You are obviously entitled to your opinion about them.

Thursday, May 1, 2008

An Early Good Morning Wave

Well, folks, we are seeing very positive change at this point. In other words, some things are coming together, and it sure feels good because frankly, we are getting tired.

Yesterday, I painted the hallway, so it is done except for the floor and base molding.

In the living room and entry way:
--the ceiling texture was fixed
--the crown molding went up
--I caulked the crown molding. A new experience, but I'm very pleased with the result.
--the ceiling, molding, and walls were painted.
--the doors (all four) were painted.

The kitchen:
We lost the wall except for two post-sets holding the roof up.

--I will pick up the wood for the built in shelves for the living room. I figure we'll get those built and painted on Saturday.
--The sunroom will get sheetrocked and taped and bedded.

Our contractor plans to be done by a week from Saturday because he has a trip scheduled and wants us done before he leaves. We want us done before he leaves. :-)

As for us, we have more texturing, painting, crown molding, caulking, and shelves to build in the sunroom and kitchen before we can put in the floor and replace the base trim. We figure that will taken another week after he is done simple because we'll have to move the furniture around. Prayerfully, we'll be done with it all in 2 1/2 weeks or less. However, besides that, I have pictures to do, Anna's birthday, pictures to process and deliver, and life in general. We have a full few weeks, but we see change, and that is encouraging. We like the results.

Before I try to get more sleep, I want to respond to some questions and other blog references.

Jan, yes, I do plan on posting pictures. However, I want to do the whole story, and I have not had time.

Wendy, I did see that I was tagged on your board. I will play. Hopefully, it'll be next week. I have to have Fiddler pictures done on Tuesday, and I am shooting senior pictures on Wednesday. As soon as those are processed, I will be able to look at my computer with the idea of fun rather than work.

Wendy, I will forward you the Beautiful Women posts if you want. I do have your email, don't I?

Also, Jan was very kind and gave me two awards while I've been out of the loop. I'll share about those when I am able to give them respectable time and mental processes.

If anyone else has tagged me or commented to me on your blogs, please let me know. I have been glancing through blogs when I can, but mostly, I'm so tired that when I get still, I doze off. Right now I am awake because I ache horribly. I don't know who invented ibuprofen, but may God bless him/her and that person's family forever.

Okay, I'm goinig to try to go back to bed now.

I look forward to posting soon and showing y'all the major remodel we are being blessed with. God is so kind and good, and He has allowed us to do this. To give you a glimpse of the none visual impact, Rob and Anna were both taking the highest level antihistamine they could due to allergies. After we pulled up the carpet and 40-year old linoleum, which stunk horribly, and the leaky fireplace had been removed, within days both were off allergy medicine. My friends, this hasn't been easy, but sometimes the road to healing is messy, hard, discouraging, tiring--and altogether worth it.

May you embrace and offer thanks for the remodeling God does in your life.

Beauty Redefined

I found this little clip, and I thought I would pass it on and open it up for discussion for all of you beautiful ladies.