Thursday, January 8, 2009

Our New Blog Home

Well Friends...(and I say that with the utmost endearment), we have found a new landing spot for the beloved blog...and I am so excited about it! Here is the latest...

You know how the Bible says in Romans 8:28 that "...all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose" ? Of course, I know that is true, but I experienced it in a wonderful way this week!

When I got the email that I couldn't call my blog by that OTHER name, I was upset because in my heart I knew that I had no intention of stepping on anyone's trademarked toes, nor was I attempting to ride along on the trademarked name of an established entity... I simply wanted my blog to reflect my heart and the mission statement of my heart is HOME! It's our refuge, it's my purpose in life, it's our's where my heart is...and to be told that I legally could not express that...well, you need to fully confess my sins to y'all right here and now :-)

So I dialed those 10 little numbers that are worn off on my dear sweet...Mother? No. Friend? No. My attorney? Yep. M, bless his heart...the Keeper Of All Things Legal in my life. He laughed. Can you believe it? He laughed at the whole thing! And then we talked...about the weather, and the holidays, and business...and then...about trademarking all of my business and personal names. I don't know why, but I just thought that was funny.

And so we did. Trademark. Everything. Or at least the applications have been filed. So, you see? Progress was made and something good has come out of this.

And actually, the other nice thing about this whole deal was that I got a whole bunch of really nice emails from people I didn't even know...who I didn't know were reading the blog...who said "hey, wait a minute!" .... and that made my heart happy! I had no idea I had so many friends around the country... what a sweet surprise! Thank you for the kind words and warm wishes.

Over the last few years, the blog has been a blessing. I have met some really wonderful people and blogging has made me focus daily on the many good things in my life. Daily, we are all faced with the minute-by-minute decision to see the positive or the negative. It takes a conscious choice to magnify the good things and minimize the not-so-good things.

God is so good, isn't He? I am so grateful for the way He continues to work in my life.

So check back in a day or so and once the new blog is all set up I'll post a link. Sorry to make you have to change the address again...And hey...don't forget...the Music CD Giveaway is still going on for January. I will combine the current entries with those from the new blog after it's all set up. Remember...3 winners will be chosen at the end of the month!

Stay tuned...and thanks for hangin' in with me :-)

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Moving Time...Again

Well friends, I have been informed via email today that I have committed copyright infringement in the naming of my blog. I sincerely regret the error. My blog was intended to just be a simple little place to stay connected with friends and family...I'm not selling anything or promoting anything...but apparently the fact that my heart is at home is an infringement on someone's rights to the word heart, the word at, and the word home....and I have been told to stop using those words immediately. So consider it done. Those of you who know me, especially "professional" people like Karla, know how careful I am about things like this. Being a musician, I am continually writing and verifying copyrights, asking permissions, etc....And it's not something I take the commercial realm. It has been my experience that titles are not copyright-able....but perhaps that only pertains to music. Therefore, I err on the side of caution and cease and desist this blog at once.

So the ol' blog will be re-named and moved once again...maybe. I just don't have the energy to move everything again and I can't just re-name this blog because the web address implies those three little words and the last thing I need right now is to be sued by someone. So if I continue the hobby of blogging, I'll have to start all over again somewhere else. I won't have the time to do all of that for a while, so for now I'll just say see ya...and I hope that the friends I have made here will continue to keep in touch. It's been fun.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Starry, Starry Night

The sky is sooooooooo beautiful tonight! I just couldn't pull myself away to come inside. It is literally a blanket of stars! While I was sitting out on my back steps tonight, these words came to my mind.

Sky of beauty, my blanket of stars

Hovers above, betwixt Earth and Mars

Millions of lights glowing tonight,

Too many to count -- oh my, what a sight!

My God has placed them, each one in it's spot

A thoughtful design, by accident it's not.

They glisten and sparkle, to my eyes a delight!

I could lie here and stare 'til morning's first light.

There's a chill in the air, a sign of soon Fall

Yet I must remain here for a moment, that's all.

To take it all in, my eyes gaze and stare

A sweet reminder of my God, Who is always there.

Why did He give me this feast for my eyes?

Just to tell me He loves me, and remind me He's mine.

What a Master Designer we serve and adore,

His hands alone created all I see and more!

I want to go in, it's getting quite cold,

Yet my heart is so warmed, I could stay 'til I'm old!

How I love the night sky and the God alone who made it

A picture like this, no other artist could create it.

Creation speaks of the One who ordered

each star and planet and galaxies unbordered

Though vast and unmeasured, they span Heaven above

Only to speak of His unending love

To me His dear child, to all here on earth

The stars all declare my God who is worth

All the praise I can speak, all the thanks I can give

For a Father above, who gives me reason to live!

Thank you God for each star in the sky

A lovely reminder of each daily "Why?"

Just because you chose, from your heart of love

to offer forgiveness and a home above

to all who receive your gift eternal

A Savior to all, and grace supernal.

My heart is grateful for all You have done,

For daily blessings and for sending your Son.

When I look at the stars You've generously scattered,

I am reminded from You of what really matters.

To acknowledge You in all that I do

To be mindful in all, that I reflect You.

Please guide me and lead me in the way I should go,

To walk in your ways, Lord, help me to know!

How I love the night sky, a million sparkles to remind me

Of a God who is faithful, and treats me so kindly!

Monday, March 17, 2008

God Loves Emily

Tonight my Emily came running in the house, excitedly calling me..."Mama, mama, come see! It's a miracle, it's a miracle! Get your camera! Oh, Mama, you just won't believe it!"

I grabbed my camera and followed her outside, asking "What? What is it????"

"Look at the sky Mama! See how much God loves me?"

I looked up and saw big puffy clouds swirling and blowing over-head, pre-thunderstorm-ish....

"Mama, remember last year at the ladies conference? Remember we all picked something to remind us of how much God loves us? Remember, Mommy, how I picked the wind? Every time I see the wind blow, it is God reminding me of how much He loves me! Remember that Mama?"

Then she stretched out her arms and closed her eyes and let the wind blow over her as she said "Oh look Mama! God loves me so much He is blowing the whole sky around! Not just the trees and the grass -- but the WHOLE SKY! Mama, it's the hand of God!!!"

Then I snapped this picture, gave her a big hug and told her that she was right, God sure does love her ALOT!

Then I walked inside with tears of joy in my eyes and gratitude in my heart for the wonderful God we have, who takes the time to swirl the wind around just to remind a little girl of how very much He loves her!

That picture is worth a thousand words to me. I printed it out and put it on my desk as a reminder of the goodness of God, and of the special faith of a child, who freely opens up her heart, shuts her eyes tightly and just lets the love of God blow over her. Daily, I need to be reminded to do the same!

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Bound In The Bundle

After I got the kids going with school work this morning, I took my Bible and went outside to sit in the sun on my porch steps. I had already done our daily reading earlier in the morning, but it just seemed like God was saying in my heart to go and read some more. There is a chapter in I Samuel that I read often, it is one of my favorite Bible stories, and I have literally read it hundreds of times over the years, and a bunch of times in the last few weeks -- but today I found something in there that I never noticed before.

I came to I Samuel 25: 29 and saw the words "...bound in the bundle of life with the Lord thy God..."

I'm not exactly sure why, but those words really touched my heart in a special way today! Maybe it's because of recent events, or concern over upcoming surgery, or who knows why...but I thought it was such a wonderful statement from God! I realized that when our life is held in God's hands, we really have no reason to fear or worry. We each have a "bundle of life" that God has given to us, and it is a bundle that He carefully holds.

I had a number of thoughts go through my mind...we use the phrase "bundle" when referring to a new baby, a bundle of joy, or we bundle up a baby in a blanket. Doesn't the word "bundle" just make you feel secure when you think about it? Or sometimes I have taken a gift, or a treat for someone, and I will bundle it up and carefully wrap it so that nothing will fall out and nothing will be damaged or lost. How wonderful to think that God does the same with our bundle of life!

Last year my children spent a few days at Pastor and Miss Julie's house. When they returned, Emily asked me at bedtime "Mama, can you bundle me up tight in the blanket like Pastor did when me and Chris went to sleep at their house?" And every night since then, she asks me to bundle her up in her blanket tightly like Pastor did -- Just that kind gesture of being bundled up to sleep gave my Emily comfort and security -- and it seems like I can never get the blankets "as tight as Pastor does"... But I try! That reminds me of how we are "bound in the bundle of life with the Lord".

I have read this chapter so often that I almost have it memorized, and yet -- God can still give me something fresh and new and heart-changing from those verses. God knew I needed to be reminded of His security and protection and care. Isn't it great to know that when we belong to God, we are bound in the bundle of life with Him. Even the word "bound" implies that we are wrapped up tightly, and tied securely. What a wonderful bundle God has given me! I am so glad that He knows my bundle from start to finish...He knows where I began and He knows where I will finish, and He knows every single step along the way -- and He has it all bundled up safely with Him. He is not going to lose my bundle, or drop it somewhere, or misplace it. He is not going to ask someone else to take care of it for a while, He is not going to set it down and forget about it. He is not going to place it in storage, or put it out with the trash. He keeps it with Him, bound and bundled. Safe and Secure.

"Bound in the Bundle of Life

with the Lord thy God"

What a glorious thought!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Crazy Christmas Round-Up

Got up early to make a nice Christmas breakfast for the family...

Stepped into the bathroom, turned on the shower, took a peek out of the blinds at the beautiful sunrise and saw...a furry black face looking back at me! AHHH! What in the world was THAT? For a second, I thought it was my old black dog Mackie -- but he died last year -- this Ghost of Christmas Past has gone a little too far!

I peeked out again and saw the big black face of a cow! or maybe it was a bull -- but it was definitely a creature of bovine descent. He looked at me, then went back to non-chalantly eating the grass by my back steps. I knew my husband wanted to get a beef cow...was this my Christmas present? Really, I would have been happy with the veggie steamer! I put my robe and slippers back on, and my coat and went outside.

"Well, Merry Christmas Mr. Big Black Bull!"

He didn't answer. He was very, very big. Huge. I opted to stay at the top of the stairs.

Hmmmm, now what was I going to do with a cow on my doorstep on Christmas morning. I have the beginnings of an enviable manger scene...

Maybe I had too much Oberweis Eggnog last night. I'm seeing cows in the yard.

My glorious nativity vision was interrupted by my neighbor furiously riding his 4-wheeler across the field toward my house.

"Don't worry Trish...I'll get him!!!!"

But the bull had other plans. He apparently planned to spend the holiday in my barn. He had no intention of being home for Christmas.

I said to my neighbor "What did you do? Give him a lump of coal in his stocking? He obviously doesn't want to go home with you!"

My neighbor wasn't in the mood for humor.

Then Mr. Bull got mad. He started trotting around the yard, this way and that, mocking the man who was yelling at him to go home.

Suddenly, from off in the distance coming at a full gallop is the Lone Ranger a.k.a. Bob my other neighbor. His horse is running like the wind and Bob is taking full advantage of the moment to actually use his lasso FOR REAL and bring this wayward bull home!

The bull obviously thought this was all part of the game and took off running. John Wayne, er, I mean Bob, is yelling to me to stand at the end of the driveway so Mr. Bull doesn't run out into the road -- oh Heavens, he might get hit by the ONE car a day that drives by...So in my slippers and coat I obediently guard the end of the driveway.

Next arrives Bob's wife in her mud boots and jacket and flowery flannel nightgown. I think she forgot to watch "What NOT To Wear To A Christmas Morning Cattle Run" because her flowery flannel was totally inappropriate. At least I was wearing my red nightgown with the little white snowflakes, which matched my red reindeer socks and white slippers. It's important to be occasion-appropriate, especially on Christmas! I was also wearing my old brown coat -- you know, the one that looks like I skinned my neighbor's old mare, and I was afraid he might notice that my coat looks vaguely familiar, but thankfully all the ranchers were quite pre-occupied.

The next attendee to this early morning holiday party was our other neighbor who (I think) just came out to show off his new Lincoln pick-up truck. I knew he would never take that new truck into that muddy field! But it did look good out there perched and ready for would have made a nice commercial...or a classic Funniest Home Video -- one or the other!

Cowboy Bob finally roped the runaway fugitive (after about an hour!) and he quietly led him home. I thought the party ended just a bit too soon, but maybe everybody had other stuff to do... was YOUR Christmas????

Friday, November 16, 2007

Callie The Barn Cat Who Lives In The House

Callie is a character. I have to write about her this morning because she makes me laugh! This morning, I woke up and walked into the bathroom, turned on the shower and wondered what was that funny noise, like a motor running or something... I looked down at the bathroom door and there were those two furry little feet peeking out from under the door, and the purring from the other side was so intense that it was vibrating the door! Callie is always so happy to see me in the morning that she just can't contain herself! I'm sure it has nothing to do with the fact that the the first thing I usually do is feed the cats (even before coffee!), I'm sure she's just SOOO happy to see me -- yeah, right.....

Anyway, she is just so darn cute that I have to tell you about her. Callie came to me by way of my friend Gerlinde -- last winter. Gerlinde is highly allergic to cats and this stray kitten came to take up residence on Gerlinde's back deck. Not even being in the house, just outside the door, Callie gave Ger such sniffles that she called me and said "Please, you've GOT to take this cat"! I argued that I already have two cats and don't want another, etc...but I took her on the understanding that she would live outside in the barn and catch mice -- so it was a good thing. Yeah, right again. When we were bringing her home, the kids and I decided to call her Callie, because she is calico-colored. When I talked to Gerlinde the next day, she said "Oh, I forgot to tell you that we named her Callie"....Funny, so did WE!

Callie's mother obviously abandoned her and didn't teach her anything about proper cat behavior. Callie used to hang out with my big dog when she first came here, so sometimes she thinks she is a dog. She will sit at the end of the driveway and wait for me to come home from work. Then when I get out of the car, she jumps all over me, like a bad dog! She follows me when I walk in the mornings, she "talks" and chases balls and sleeps on my feet on top of the blankets at night. Callie the Barn Cat lived in the barn for about 2 weeks.

My two other cats are very snobby to Callie. They have forgotten from whence they came! They were also strays abandoned on my doorstep, but they refuse to acknowledge that humble beginning. They gang up on Callie, but she doesn't care -- she gives them that look that says "Whatever..."

The cutest thing she does is this daily "paws under the door" ritual every morning! When she puts her paws under there, I will touch her paws with my foot, and she will hang on for a minute, then she'll just sit there by the door and wait for me to come out. When I walk downstairs, she will walk a few steps ahead and usually trip because she tries to go down the stairs while turning her head to look back at me. She is so devoted!

Callie has been very naughty when it comes to Christmas, and the tree, and the gifts, but it's hard to stay mad at her for very long. I'm glad that God made cats! Thank you to Gerlinde for sending Callie to live on the farm!