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SMILINGEYES2's Recent Blog Entries

Mourning to Joy

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

In January last year my husband needed surgery on two areas of his spine. He completed therapy at the hospital rehab unit. While there, I wanted to surprise him for Valentines day but he could not have much in his small room. He seemed touched when I had arranged a serenade.

Last year on this date, my husband was admitted to the ER. The next morning, we learned he had cancer. He died five days later. While I would have liked more time, for him it was a blessing as he was so fearful of cancer. He was not perfect, but he was a very good man. I was blessed that he chose me to share this journey for 38 years.

The family, church and friends wrapped around me and our son. The service was so fitting and beautiful.

The last few days have been filled with a roller coaster of feelings. As I think of my dh, my eyes tear-up. There are smiles as well as I have so many good memories. Homer was always so respectful and thoughtful of others. We each helped shape the other and made a good team. Adopting our son was the icing on the cake.

Getting ready to leave for an Alaskan Cruise. So happy my two sisters and son and good friend will be sharing this adventure. So glad I am in better health and shape than I was two years ago. Being able to fly without a seat belt extension is the best. Will not be able to do much on-line until our return. Will miss my Spark friends and teams emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Bless you! So glad God has brought you from the grief of mourning to a new place. He is so faithful and your Homer was fortunate to not suffer long...and it sounds like he has you surrounded with supportive people to help you continue your journey with joy...He is a GOOD God! Enjoy that trip AND your family!

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IAM_HIS 7/24/2014 2:00AM

    Oh how sad I am to hear of your loss. However, I am happy that you can go on the cruise and I sincerely hope you have a wonderful time. It is good that you are getting away for a while. My prayers will be with you.

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LUCYCAN7 7/23/2014 8:41PM

  I am so sorry dear for your loss.Cherish your memories with Homer.
Blessings and continue to take good care of your health you have
done so good,I am certain your dear husband would want you to.
Enjoy your cruise as well.Hope to hear about your cruise when you
return.Hope you have a safe journey my dear. emoticon

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MOM2ACAT 7/23/2014 5:36PM

    I am so sorry for your loss emoticon

I hope your cruise brings you happiness and healing.

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KANOE10 7/23/2014 8:32AM

    emoticon I am sorry for your loss. Your husband sounded like a warm caring man.
Enjoy that Alaskan cruise with your family. You are doing a good job of taking care of yourself.


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CROUCHINGFLEA 7/23/2014 6:22AM

    Bless you. I hope you have a wonderful time on your cruise

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LINTPICKER 7/22/2014 10:05PM

    I hope you enjoy your cruise, it really is beautiful there. You have been blessed with great memories and are building new ones as well.

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DJ4HEALTH 7/22/2014 9:37PM

    Have fun on the cruise and see you when you get back from it too. It is hard when cancer takes a loved one. emoticon emoticon

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SUBMOM2 7/22/2014 7:04PM

    This must be a bittersweet time for you. I'm sorry for your loss. I'm glad you were able to continue your journey to wellness over what has been quite a year for you. How wonderful that you are having an exciting adventure. I hope you and your family have a terrific trip!

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ARNETTELEE 7/22/2014 5:28PM

  Sorry for your loss...

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PURPLEPEONY 7/22/2014 5:10PM

    emoticon Have fun! emoticon

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MJRVIC2000 7/22/2014 5:00PM

    Faith makes everything possible; Hope makes every thing work; and Love makes everything beautiful. God Bless YOU! Vic.

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Down 100+ Pounds

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Christmas, 2011, I reached my highest weight of 264. I wore size 2-3 X. Something clicked for me and I seriously began to work on losing weight. Spark People played such a crucial roll. The tracking is such a valuable tool. Several teams have great challenges. Access to recipes and articles helped as well. My spark friends and fellow team members has been one of my most valuable tools. Over two years, I lost 40 pounds. In December 2013, I had gastric bypass surgery. Since the surgery, I have lost an additional 60 pounds.

While I am not at my goal, I wanted to capture the changes at 100 pounds. I like being able to shop in the petite section again. Even more I like the way I feel. I have so much more energy and strength and flexibility.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GLORY- 8/1/2014 1:22AM

    Amazing!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DJ4HEALTH 6/19/2014 10:15PM

    You look great!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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IGNITEME101 6/13/2014 9:23PM

    emoticon So excited for you!!

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LYNNWANNABE 6/6/2014 8:07PM

    I'm so glad I know you.. I'm totally, excited for you!!! emoticon

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2BTHINMAMMA 5/26/2014 8:47PM

    emoticon That is awesome! So happy for look great! emoticon

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MINIMOE1 5/26/2014 10:07AM

    You've accomplished what I desperately need to do. thank you for the inspiration.

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    how wonderful. Congrats

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    That is SO wonderful. You've done a marvelous job!!

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FLEMIDG 5/26/2014 1:00AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SUBMOM2 5/26/2014 12:35AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

Good for you! Thanks for sharing your story!!

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PURPLEPEONY 5/26/2014 12:23AM

    emoticon emoticon

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LOSE4LIFE47 5/25/2014 11:29PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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LKBRIDGE 5/25/2014 11:14PM



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FLUTTERFLI 5/25/2014 10:59PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
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MINDYJ1 5/25/2014 10:44PM

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Shedding My Jonah Persona

Monday, April 14, 2014

Yesterday morning, I was so excited about the lesson on Passover and the Lord's Supper that I could not wait to get to church. However, when I arrived, the place I usually parked had a special permit parking sign. I did get permission to park while I unloaded the car--it took three trips from the lot to take all the food into the classroom.

I had forgotten a couple of items so needed to make a quick run to the grocery store. I had lost all of my excitement and was brooding about the parking as I knew I would have to park a long distance and would need to carry the groceries in and after church would need to get my car and try to find a closer spot to reload. I was like Eyeore having a pity party.

About this time, I remembered Jonah and how he moped and threw a hissy-fit when the gourd plant that had provided him shade shriveled and died. Jonah already had three stinky days in a belly of the great fish because he did not want to see the people repent. After they did change, he was up on the hill hoping it was a mistake and they would still be destroyed.

I repented of my foul mood. I did not want to be Jonah and miss the blessings around me. I realized I need to increase my activity. I am so much healthier now and could walk the distances without severe pain and asthma symptoms. I was not going to allow this speed bump in my day derail me. I am grateful for learning from his life.

The kids were so attentive to the lesson on why Jesus celebrated Passover and how He transformed the celebration. They participated actively. They were appreciative and expressed thanks. Their questions were insightful and showing such tender hearts. In addition, three adult teachers volunteered to help and this was their first time to observe how to tie the Old Testament with fulfillment in the New Testament. I am so fortunate to have the privilege of teaching children and seeing their response. Seeing future leaders see possibilities of how they can take over the class gives me hope. The one young woman is from Formosa so she can take this around the globe when she returns home.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Nice blog--I loved your's what drew me in and made me read it! I think we all have a little Jonah persona from time to time...I'm gonna have to work on awareness to when I might be falling into that trap. Bless you!

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2BDYNAMIC 4/15/2014 7:52PM

    Nice blog and I really enjoyed and your sincerity .......... emoticon

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    You are so right we do need to focus on the good and the bible is full of examples.

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IGNITEME101 4/15/2014 12:52AM

    Great trials demand total obedience! Good lesson that you learned btw!

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FLEMIDG 4/15/2014 12:33AM

    So glad things improved and you ended up having a good day.

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Passover / Lord's Supper

Saturday, April 12, 2014

I love tying the Old Testament to the New Testament. For the past 20 years, I have tried to make the stories come alive for my second graders. The tables are in the shape of the cross.

We begin by reviewing how Moses approaches the Pharaoh requesting His people be allowed to worship God. The kids chant--"Let my people go!" Then respond, "But the pharaoh's heart was hardened." We review the plagues. To reinforce these, there are plastic frogs and flies on the table. We culminate with the death angel passing over the homes covered by the blood of the innocent lamb.

The children of Israel were expected to celebrate Passover every year. This is why Jesus and his disciples gathered in the upper room. Jesus begins the event by washing the apostles feet demonstrating the expectation that we should serve others. He then took the symbols if Passover and gave them new meaning.

The Matzah bread has piercing as He was pierced for our transgressions. There are brown stripes on the bread looking like dried blood as He was beaten and bled.

Christ became the Passover Lamb who takes away the sins of the world.

I tried to serve lamb a couple of times but it was not well received. We will be doing chicken tenders.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GENRE009 4/13/2014 9:59PM

    this was a wonderful way to teach the kids!
I think you have to buy leg of lamb. but I don't really like it either. eva

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IAM_HIS 4/13/2014 6:43AM

    Enjoy your Passover meal with the children. I know they will have a very special time.

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    what a great way to teach them. My kids would love this.

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KATHYJO56 4/13/2014 12:28AM

    What a wonderful way to teach young children about the Bible and what Passover and Easter means. I am sure the chicken nuggets will be wolfed down.

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Thursday, April 03, 2014

My life has gone thru so many changes. I waited nearly nine months since my husband's death to make a very important decision. For 30 years, we have called central Virginia our home. We have so many friends and ties to this community. My heart is also drawn to southwest Missouri which is my birthplace and home to several siblings. As time passed I was feeling more and more like the proverbial person with a foot on the dock and another in a boat. The stress to make a decision mounted.

My son and I composed a dream list of what we wanted in a house. I began searches on line and narrowed down the pool from over 100 to 25. We cut another 5 so we actually saw 20 houses. From this, we narrowed down to our top four. All of these had advantages but none met all criteria to a T. The realtor learned of a woman who had recently remarried and she was moving to join her husband. Her house had not even been listed. We were allowed to see the home and made an offer. After negotiations, a contract was made; we close May 1. We are do looking forward to being nearer family.

We are now working feverishly to pack up for our move. So much to get done to prepare for the move with the biggest task transferring my husband's library to the university.

My other change is my body. Not only am I losing weight but my shape is showing more curves and tone. I have lost nearly 85 pounds now. When I hit a plateau, I am not using it as an excuse to give into impulses but rather stay the course and the pounds do come off.

I am so appreciative of my teams with challenges. Also, I appreciate my Spark friends. I gain so much support here on this journey to improved health.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DJ4HEALTH 4/8/2014 1:28AM

    It is hard after you lose your husband. If I have the money I would move too but not sure where I would go if I did have the money to move.

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859320 4/5/2014 12:44AM

    congratulations you are doing a good job. emoticon I am from Oklahoma and of course have been to Branson several times. emoticon

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2BTHINMAMMA 4/4/2014 8:30AM

    I am so sorry for your loss! Praying your move goes smoothly and that this new adventure is wonderful for you and your son! May the Lord continue to bless!

And emoticon on the weight loss!! emoticon

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ROMANTILLY 4/4/2014 3:18AM

    Congratulations. Being near family is so important. We were going to move last year to be near my family after DH lost his job, but he decided he didn't like the area and he wanted to be close to his kids. I feel the tug to be close to my family all the time and really miss being able to see my mom. She is getting on in years now, and I'm always wondering if I will get to be close to her before the good Lord calls her home. I know she understands, but I would love to be close to family again.

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GENRE009 4/4/2014 12:45AM


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BAMAJAM2 4/3/2014 1:37PM

  This home looks beautiful-- and may you find it a source of comfort for you and your son. Is this Missouri--? I am from the Show-me State, from St. Louis. I can remember cold winters, and hot summers in the mid-west.
I commend you for your healthy journey-- Hugs!

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    What a beautiful house. I am sure you will miss your friends but starting over sometimes in a place you grew up but still starting over is good for the soul.

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MOTHEPRO 4/3/2014 11:37AM

    The move itself is never fun, but I'm sure you'll love your new home once you're settled!

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