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MERRYWON's Photo MERRYWON Posts: 6,931
1/1/13 12:52 A

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"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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GIRL4ABBA's Photo GIRL4ABBA Posts: 2,309
12/31/12 8:49 P

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Scripture of today: Psalm 12:5 (KJV) 5 For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy, now will I arise, saith the Lord; I will set him in safety from him that puffeth at him.

I was planning to meet some friends for dinner and then come home and hang with the girls, but I opted out because just before I left, Sean had me call my Mortgage company and let them know that we are making a payment on Wednesday. They informed me that as of today because he didn't follow through on his word, my name is reported to the credit bureau. I told Sean that was why I opted out of dinner, but all he said was that the credit bureau were jerks. He basically poo poos all the things I think are important. I don't have the strength to fight with him, so I cut the conversation short. He's home now I think...at least I see the van's here. I am glad I didn't go because now I am relaxing with my 2 favorite girls. He I think is home...I think in the driveway talking on his phone. I try not to wonder where he is or what he's doing or who he is talking to. I ask him how his dad is doing and for grocery money. The rest I leave alone.

We are watching a movie.

I am believing the Lord gave me the Psalm. He encouraged me this morning prior to the phone call. Though I believe it, I just can't act like we have enough money when I am thoroughly confused about whether we do, and go out to dinner. I am going to work hard to get a job.

We tried today to get to the gym, but 10 minutes before we got there, they closed the child care room. Salina climbed the rock wall. When we got home I did 10 up and down the stairs, and Salina ran 30.

Elaine

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MERRYWON's Photo MERRYWON Posts: 6,931
12/31/12 8:25 A

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Happy New Year, everyone!

We are having some friends over for dinner and games. Christina is having a friend over, too, we are going to play marbles and then have a bonfire. We are grilling steaks, having salad and roasted vegies. I was going to make a decadent desert and opted for something low calorie instead. I have to quit making exceptions and eat healthier.

Elaine, there is just something about starting a new year and having the hope that the resolutions we make will come to fruition. I will continue to pray for your FIL, we know that God can bring good out of every situation if we let him. Sounds like you are getting ready to set some goals and know what you need to do to reach them.

I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year! emoticon

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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GIRL4ABBA's Photo GIRL4ABBA Posts: 2,309
12/30/12 8:37 P

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Mary: You and I need to press forward this year. Tomorrow I am going to the Kroc Center, and on the way I am getting a meal replacement shake that I have tried over the days when my dad and stepmom were here. I feel like I am losing weight, however, because of the lack of use of certain muscles some areas are still flabby. I want a strong core and back and hips as I grow older. I hope we both get our eating in check. One thing I'd like to do is to get back to tracking/journaling. For me, I think journaling is something that I need to do across the board.

Jo: Your dedication to your new lifestyle will continue to inspire us. We will all persevere as you are in your journey. I look forward to a better year this year, even with the looming prospect of my father-in-law's death. I pray that he will find peace before he dies.

Elaine

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MERRYWON's Photo MERRYWON Posts: 6,931
12/30/12 5:00 P

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Good afternoon, ladies, having a lazy day. Dave and I went to church and went out for breakfast with friends until 2:00 and then took a nap. It feels good to take it easy.

Elaine, I talked with my doctor about my gall bladder and he said that since I have only had 2 attacks over the past several years, that he would wait on taking action, he said it was up to me. I need to take action, alright, but with my eating and exercising habits. A new year is a good time to reassess and set some goals and I would like to do that as an individual and Dave and I would like to do that with our family, as we could all stand for some changes.

Jo, I have gained and lost weight so many times that it is discouraging. I look around and see people just a bit older than myself in very poor physical condition and immobile because of excess weight. I certainly know what I need to do, I just need to do it. I have held my own over the holidays but need to make some changes in order to achieve better health. I want to be able to be active and enjoy life and that window will be closing if I do not take action. I am at risk for so many disorders that come with being overweight and much of those risks can be greatly reduced if I make the right choices. Our whole family could benefit from those changes. I know that God has to be a factor in all of this as my overeating is an addiction. I know I need to turn to him instead of the food. I do keep trying and one day I hope that I am successful in putting God before the food. We all slip up but good for you for getting right back at it. You are an inspiration to me.

Hope everyone has a blessed Sunday!

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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GIRL4ABBA's Photo GIRL4ABBA Posts: 2,309
12/29/12 3:22 P

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Jo: Thank you as always for your wisdom. I think some days missing is OK. I have been losing weight since all this is going on...on top of coughing every single night. I am feeling better though. I think meeting regularly with my pastor will help me with what is going on with Sean.

Mary: I have been so busy with everything, I missed whether you had your gall bladder treated. How are you there?

Elaine

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12/29/12 12:53 P

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ALL: I'll begin with confession. I did NOT make it to the gym on Thurs. I kept putting off getting dressed and out the door until late in the afternoon. I ate an early dinner and then headed out. I got my errands done and just as I was checking out of the last store and heading to the gym, Dan called saying that Tom (my son) and the children had stopped in for a couple of hours. They never just drop in, especially when my son stays, so I headed home. By the time they left, there wasn't enough time to go to the gym before it closed. Can't say I was sad about it.

I DID go yesterday and did a long cardio (not just a warm up) and the strength training. I feel pretty good about where I am at but know that I NEED to increase both areas for skiing and don't have much time to do so....just about 4 weeks so I need to be faithful and dedicated.

We got more snow today...the snow stuck to the trees and it was an absolute winter wonderland this morning. After Dan shoveled (it is AMAZING to me that he can do that!) the driveway, we went for a walk around the neighborhood and I took photos with my phone. I'll post them on FB if any of you are interested.

I have put on 8 pounds over the two holidays and that is on TOP of what I brought home with me from the summer...so I need to get REAL about how I'm eating. It is very hard with Christmas leftovers but I'm really trying to get it together.

ELAINE: I disagree with your Dad. ALL marriages are meant to last forever! I think where we get confused is that in realizing that we are fallen, sinful people, we know that too often, they don't. But that doesn't mean that they shouldn't. I so wish, over and over again, that you had solid Biblical Counseling and Discipleship available to you. You need the support and encouragement to keep on doing what you are doing....to be able to cope with Sean's sin and to keep leaning on Jesus. Don't get me wrong...I'm NOT saying there is never a reason for divorce....only that that is never what is intended from God's perspective. I hope you understand the distinction....you seem to by your actions. I just want to encourage you.

I'm glad your Christmas went well. Sounds like you were a big help to your Dad and step-mom and to your fil as well. Keep praying for him and doing what you can to minister to him and to Sean. God is your reward!!

MARY: How wonderful of those people to help you out so much! Such generosity renews my faith in some people!! I, too, have been helped in bad situations and it means SO MUCH!! I hope that you and Dave can make the most of your time together...each of you getting to do something that you really want to do but still making time for each other.

Did you have a good time with your sister? Did your children enjoy the family time?

DORE: So glad that Mike is able to be home for a bit and to refresh himself physically before heading out again. Yeah, slick roads and semis don't mix well. Cars either, for that matter, but semis are even trickier. I enjoy the snow more now that I rarely HAVE to drive in it if I think it is too nasty.

KATHY and KATHIE...haven't heard from either of you in so long. Hope you are both well and that you had a blessed Christmas.

Today we got more snow and (oops, said that already) and we are just laying low, regrouping. Tomorrow our Sunday School is a "Chorus of Prayer"....we are just meeting and praying together for the new year. Then church as usual. I might take my dgd to exchange her gift tomorrow b/c she is not very available on other days.

Guess that is it for now. Jo


Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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GIRL4ABBA's Photo GIRL4ABBA Posts: 2,309
12/29/12 10:26 A

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Mary: It is my stepmom, not my MIL. She is the only one that is healthy. I am so sorry that you got stuck. What a blessing to have people help you like they did. :-) The Lord is providing isn't he?

I am working on getting the house cleaned up today, then I am going to work on job hunting. Sean claims all I do is sit and watch TV...but it was in reference to the fact that I mentioned that he plays his guitar while having someone he's paying do work (costing us more money). I really only watch TV when I'm eating lunch while the girls are in school, and we watch something at night. I also mentioned that since I have to itemize all the things I buy, and he doesn't, it seems a bit backwards. He says he can simply "work longer" for the items he's bought, but I told him that he shorts me on groceries every week. Oh well, it never gets through.

I'm calling my pastor later to set up a time to meet. I really just need to seek wisdom as I walk this out.

Elaine

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MERRYWON's Photo MERRYWON Posts: 6,931
12/28/12 10:49 P

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OMGoodness, ladies, what an evening I have had. I did not realize we were in a storm warning here in Green Bay as I have the weather channel bookmarked on my computer for Escanaba. I was going to head to the store for a few things this evening and found that we had gotten about 3 inches of snow and it was still coming down. I had parked outside and the lot is on a hill. I got myself stuck in an awkward position. Two of the men from the complex pushed my car out and helped me get it into indoor parking. They asked me where I was heading with my car and I told them I was going to get a movie and a little something to eat. One of the ladies brought me in to her apartment and told me to pick out movies and they gave me things from left from the Christmas party. So nice here, just like family.

Dore, I am glad that Mike and Matt are not out in this weather, as you said, you can take all the precautions that you can but things still happen. I know what you mean about wanting to do something rather than sitting around, it gets old in a hurry. I am glad you got your car back.

Elaine, so good to hear from you. Hope you had a nice Christmas with your family. I know that it is a struggle to be with family at times, even if you get along well, you can still get on each others nerves. I am glad your MIL is doing well and glad that you can bring Christ to your FIL. Please keep us posted. You are in our prayers as you face all of these challenges.

I am hoping to get home tomorrow but it will depend on the weather.

Edited by: MERRYWON at: 12/28/2012 (22:58)
"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/28/12 10:40 P

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Dore: Thank you for the wise perspective. My stepmom can be too forward on things. She told Salina that she was abusing her dog because she kept her from coming upstairs. My brother did that with a dog. It was either in its cage or outside too, but when I think of it, my dad doesn't like dogs in the house, so maybe he was being polite too. In our case, my stepmom had oxygen and we were afraid the dog would interfere with the line. Salina is an excellent trainer, and it really bothers her. She walked the dog and brought her outside, and when her grandma went to the doctor took her out of her cage, but she wanted to keep the dog away because she is a puppy and we weren't sure if she would bite the line. I am glad that my dad is a strong contrast to my stepmom because he tones her down. He doesn't interfere. He is gentle. I guess as I get older, I appreciate him more and more. We just move forward. I finally heard from my pastor. I will contact him tomorrow. Today I had to get my blood pressure meds...I've been out of them for a few days. I finally took them tonight. My dad talked about his taking multivitamins, because he is the only one who didn't cough while cranberry tablets for urinary issues (which are helping) but I have been still battling this stupid virus. Salina has too, but I decided not to take her to the doctor. My stepmom's doctor said it is not necessarily an indication of infection. It could be something else. Her symptoms are almost gone. I'm glad I didn't take her. My stepmom also tries to talk Salina into coming to stay for a summer when she is 15. They drink and like to party and also my stepsister's daughter has been on a date at 11. I think it is the worst idea ever. I love them though. I will continue to pray for them. I know the Lord touched her when she was here. We gave the Lord the credit.

I am glad for the warning about Sean. I started today very tired and thinking of the state my marriage is in. My stepmom has been through a divorce and she compares our situation to hers a great deal. I think that discouragement was what wore me out.

Well, I have to go to bed. I hope to check in again tomorrow.

Elaine

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12/28/12 10:20 P

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Good evening ladies,

I have so enjoyed Mike being home but I think I am ready to do something besides relax. But I know that if I get too busy he will too and I want him well rested before he goes out and fights with the roads and the weather. Over the last few days there have been two rather large accidents on the major highways by our house that involved semis. Both jack knifed and then there was a pile up. He is a very good driver and takes all the precautions he can but bad weather and slick roads are a very dangerous combination.

Elaine - so glad to hear that your stepmother is doing well and was able to head home. While I know it was nice to have her support you in the matters you have talked about, having family get in the middle sometimes is not good. Don't be surprised if Sean doesn't act out now that they are gone. On another front, you are being a good example of Christian love to your FIL. I know he must really appreciate the care you are giving him. Praying for him to find Christ and to not suffer too much as his time comes. Praying also that you find the job that the Lord has waiting for you. Don't run out in front of God's working for you. Sometimes we miss so many blessings because we can't seem to wait on God's timing.

Ran errands today with Mike. We were able to make a payment on the car and they let us bring it home. It has been at the shop for over a month. Just a few more days and Mike will be back out on the road.

Hope that everyone has a great weekend.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
Longfellow


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12/28/12 3:31 P

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Update: Please continue to pray for my father-in-law as he quickly goes downhill. Our Christmas visit was very pleasant...and it was hard to leave...kept busy by cleaning everything I could in the kitchen area for his girlfriend. It was hard because Sean took Salina to his brother's on Christmas eve. but I was thankful Destini stayed behind. Salina doesn't cave to the manipulating of his mom, so I thought it was OK. She basically stayed outside and played basketball. The next day his brother, sister and their families met our family at his dad's. I also brought my brother as my father-in-law loves him and mentioned how highly he thought of him, and I figured it would comfort him. He gave every person $100, though it was of little comfort to me. I've been trying to get Sean to check to see if his mom still had a wheelchair from his late grandmother he could use, but he hasn't done anything with it.

In contrast, my stepmom got cleared from needing additional treatment! :-) God gave me a tremendous peace that I knew well from my experience from Destini which He helps me through. She had 40% cancer in her uterus, and it was removed and there is no indication of spreading! :-) She will be back the end of next month for a followup. I am blessed by their visits. She gets on Sean about his behavior which helps me, because someone else is saying it, not me. He continues to stiff me on groceries, claiming that he's wonderful because he's paying a bill. He does more when they are here, so it is nice. I just wish it was his normal. She confronted him about what he was doing for a living because he mentioned a guy HE trained who got a really good HVAC job with a commercial company (something I know he would make a great deal of money doing). He said maybe he was happy making $22,000.00. He claimed when I got a job it would make it easier on him. I confronted him in private later and he said he didn't say that, but my stepmom mentioned it later. She and my dad are concerned with what I am dealing with. Dad doesn't say much though. He DID say, however, that not all marriages are meant to last forever. I agree.

I have to try to find work. My interview seemed to go well, but I am going to work hard to put my resume into places I would like to work, whether they have openings or not. I have all next week off from school. I'm going to finish what I can with re-writes, but I am going get a system to find work. I feel sad that I think my marriage is coming to an end. I have to push past this though, because my girls need financial support.

Today...exhaustion has set in. They have gone back to the beautiful north. I think possibly prior to the actual relief of her not having to have chemo I must have been running on adrenalin. But, ultimately, I am thankful for the good news with my stepmom. I have drank coffee and tried to lay down...nothing helps.

Thank you for any prayers you had time for in this busy season. I am thankful to hear you've had a Merry Christmas. Mary: I hope you get to meet up with Dave for some relaxing too.

Jo: It sounds like you are feeling better.

All: I will be meeting with someone about a fitness plan at the Kroc Center this week. I have a week before anything is due for school. I hope to begin strengthening the areas that I've neglected properly after all those years when my neck prohibited me from exercising.

Elaine

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MERRYWON's Photo MERRYWON Posts: 6,931
12/28/12 12:42 P

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Good morning, ladies, I am posting from our apartment in Green Bay. I am here catching up on some paperwork, doing some cleaning and just taking some time to regroup after the holidays.

Dore, it seems as though things are either too busy or too quiet and no in between. I tend to go full steam ahead and then crash, which is what I am doing now. I wonder if I will ever achieve that "balance" that I keep on striving for. I am hoping the weather will cooperate for me to head home tomorrow. Dave and I will have until after the new year to spend together. He is spending time with his brother and son in law fishing today. I hope that you enjoy your quiet time with Mike.

Jo, there seems to be so much build up to Christmas and so much busyness that I get to the point that I just want it over with and that usually does not happen until after the new year, for me. I had a few days where the food got the best of me. I am joining the YMCA in January. I really need to exercise along with trying to eat right if I want to see results on the scale and feel better and fit. I wonder if there will ever be a new year where I won't have the same old goal.

Elaine, thinking of you and hoping to hear from you soon.

Kathy, Kathie and Jan, hope the holidays have been good for you!

Mary

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/27/12 2:53 P

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Hi all,

Like Jo I hope that you all had a wonderful Christmas with family. Ours was quiet. We did go share a meal with some very dear friends. The children loved having Mike around since he acted just like a grandpa with each and every one of them. We came home and had a quiet evening.

It started to snow yesterday and finally stopped sometime this morning. We are going to stay home and relax since the roads are not good. Mike was bone tired and has done a lot of resting since he got home. We are really enjoying this time together.

Praying that Mary's sister makes it home safely when she leaves.

I know that Elaine, you have a lot on your plate right now with family and their illnesses. Praying for your strength and patience in these times.

Mary - thank you for sharing that story. Both Mike and I have had some experiences with children and their knowing things that they shouldn't be able to. I believe there is a reason that Christ tells us that we must come to Him as little children. It is because children trust, they believer, and they generally follow. They don't have an agenda, they don't have their own plan, and they don't believe they know better. They come to Christ with their heart completely open. So should we.

I will probably be very sporadic until the new year. Hope that you each have a wonderful new year.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
Longfellow


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12/27/12 7:50 A

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MARY: I hope those memories bring much comfort to that little girl's family. If they know Jesus, I'm SURE HE WILL. That doesn't mean there isn't pain, but there is comfort that you cannot really describe in knowing GOD Is still in control and loved your loved one more than you can....and did what truly is ETERNALLY best for both your loved one and you...even in events that from our perspective is such a tragedy. I seriously do not know how people who are not believers deal with such things...... Often it ends up in bitterness and anger.

ALL: Well, is everyone done with Christmas now? We finally had our family celebration yesterday. The weather put a bit of a crimp on it. I was hoping for snow, but we go more than expected and my son, who works part time for a landscape/snow removal company, had to fill in. Our Christmas was a day late b/c he had to work at the firehouse and now it was shortened a bit b/c he had to plow. sigh. He needs the money, though, and he was here for dinner and presents and b/c his wife was working till 2, the children were here all day. If my dd had not been home, that would have made it hard for me but b/c she was here with her friend who also has children, the kids entertained each other. They were squirrelly.....wanting to open the presents right away (that doesn't happen until AFTER dinner and AFTER reading the Christmas Story) so we bundled them up and sent them outside to play in the wet snow. They had a blast and wore off some energy but came in very wet and muddy. They hadn't really come with playing-in-snow clothes, but we keep pajamas here, so we took their clothes and washed/dried them all, including jackets, and dressed them in pajamas until the clothes were clean and dry.

Dinner was delicious. I did a better job of scaling down the amounts so we don't have a ton of left-overs except for the turkey. I'm going to package some of it today to freeze.

Megan and crew leave this morning. I'm praying the roads are safe enough for good travel. The snow/sleet ended early last evening and since she will be on highly used roadways, I'm praying they will be clear by now.

Gifts were mostly a success. I have to exchange a couple of items, but will save some money on one and the other...well, for a teenaged girl it is to be expected :-). I want her to be happy with it.

I'm looking forward to today and tomorrow...low activity days EXCEPT for the gym. I am COMMITTING to being there both days...today for both cardio and strength training and Friday, for just cardio. There. Now hold me to it!! Jo

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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12/23/12 12:56 P

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I have to share this beautiful story with you as my mom shared it with me. My parents have some friends who know a family that lost their first grade daughter in the school shootings last week. On the morning of this tragedy, the little girl asked her mother if she could wear her Christmas dress to school. Her mother said, no, she would have to wait until Christmas to wear the dress. The little girl begged and begged until her mother finally gave in. She also wanted her hair curled. Her mother said she looked like a little princess in the pink dress and blond curls and new white bubble jacket and white boots. The little girl then said to her mother, "now I will look pretty when I see Jesus. It really makes you wonder, doesn't it? You wonder what that little girl knew when she went to school that day. It just brought tears to my eyes.

I have not had a chance to read through all of the threads, enjoying time with my sister and her boys but I will catch up when I can. I wish you all a blessed Christmas Eve and Christmas Day!

Edited by: MERRYWON at: 12/24/2012 (09:23)
"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/23/12 8:07 A

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DORE: I had to laugh at your comment about my activities making you tired just reading about them. It makes ME tired reading about them, too!! I'm thankful that the LORD gives me the strength to do it. Sometimes, I wish I didn't sign up for as much, but so far I have been able to push through. I do sit down in the middles often, and take a break. I also have an island in my kitchen where I can sit while chopping or peeling or frosting or such....so if I get really tired, I can sit while working and during the holidays, I take advantage of that.

I will definitely remember to pray for little Rory. Hope the path report gives them the info they need to fix things!

ALL: Since I last posted our friends came from NY. They had to drive through that horrible snowstorm so they got here after 9 p.m instead of the 6 or 7 we were hoping for. But we got to visit a little bit that night and then a little the next morning before we both had to get on the road. They were continuing to Memphis and we had to drive to Indianapolis yesterday for Dan's cousins' get-together. That is a bit boring for me. The cousins were going over old photos of their school times and of their ancestors (ugh) but I do enjoy visiting with some of them and I tried to make the best of it. Dan seemed to really enjoy it so it was worth it.

When I woke yesterday, I did not feel very well and almost stayed home. The night before, we were supposed to have our two younger grandchildren spend the night as well as our company from NY, but their mom called and said they were sick (the day after they had been here all day.....oh-oh) so I was thinking maybe I had what they had. I pushed through. Dan drove and I actually slept for about 45 min. in the car. I NEVER sleep in the car. So maybe I was fighting it off. I hope so....just don't like being sick, period.

Today is just church (no sunday school) and then we will finish wrapping the gifts we have and take one last assessment to see if we need to fill in anywhere. Then I'll be mixing up some of the ingredients for Christmas Dinner ahead of time. I'll do a little of that tomorrow as well.

We will have a Christmas Eve service at church and then on Christmas Day, we are having brunch at friends from church who celebrated their Christmas with their families at TG time (in Seattle and Denver) Then we might stop in our sister church and help out with the Feast of Love and then maybe go to a movie. Then on Christmas Day, our family will gather here for dinner and gift exchange. Our dil works that day so she won't get here until about 3 p.m. but the kids will be here earlier. Meg will come down Christmas night, so we will have here with us all day :-)

I don't even remember if I have told you about my dil's mom and dad. They both have medical issues that are pretty serious. Her mom just had surgery, removing part of her small intestines b/c of bleeding ulcers. They think the ulcers were caused by pain meds she was taking for arthritis pain. She is home from the hospital and hopefully they can find some pain management now that won't cause that problem again. Her father has a lung condition that is progressive and for which there is no cure. He just got accepted into a clinical trial but it is one where you don't know if you are getting the med or not. Please pray for them.

And like Dore...I probably won't be on here before Christmas, so to each of you, MERRY CHRISTMAS....and may God bless you spiritually, emotionally and physically in 2013!!

Jo



Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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12/21/12 10:26 P

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Hi all,

Yes Elaine - Rory is my granddaughter that was so sick before. She is now 7. We are still waiting for the results of the last test that was done. Probably won't come through until after Christmas.

Thank you all for your prayers.

Elaine - keeping all of your family members in my prayers. This is certainly a rough time of the year to be going through all of this.

Jo - I really don't know how you get everything done that you do. Reading all that you do makes me very tired. emoticon

Mike and Matt got home on Tues. afternoon. Since then he has been resting because he is bone weary. He is just doing what he wants to do and then napping when he feels the need. Today he felt like decorating a tree. There is no room in the house for a tree so he pulled out all the lights, checked them out and then hung the working ones on a tree outside. That seemed to make him feel very good. It doesn't look the best but he seems happy.

If I don't make it back on here before Christmas I want to wish you a Very Merry Christmas.

Good evening,
Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
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12/20/12 11:40 P

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ELAINE: So sorry about Sean's dad.....praying that God will soften his heart for him to be saved. Praying for you as you set aside his wrongs to give grace as God has given to you........ Praying also for your stepmom and for good path reports!

ALL: Yesterday I made the party mix with Chex cereal and Cheerios and peanuts and pretzels and M&Ms and white chocolate coating. Then left at 4:30 pm for church for rehearsal...the Cantata at 7pm followed by a reception. Dan brought our two youngest grands....they enjoyed it. Everyone seemed to really appreciate it...made all the hard work worth it. Drove the kids by a crazy-decorated with lights house on the way home....they got a kick out of that. Gave them 5 min. to peruse the gifts under the tree (they are not all there yet so that has them worried, I think) and then to bed. Got up early to make and ice cookies (photos on FB) and then son dropped off oldest dgd to join us. He came back to pick them up at about 12:30 so we could leave for our closing (yet another refinancing....but only a stop-gap, lower loan till we pay it off by 2014 but maybe as early as this year!) and then back home to clean up a bit (not everything as the cookies were not completely finished) and then get ready for Girl's Night Out at The Cheesecake Factory. These two gals and I have been trying to get together since early Oct!

I think the waitress gave me real coffee instead of decaf b/c even though I'm tired, I can't go to sleep! ugh!

Tomorrow I have Pilates and wanted to do some last minute shopping, but snow has arrived and I don't know how bad the roads will be....we don't have equipment here like you do in Michigan, so it takes much longer to deal with any snow, plus we have many hills, and most drivers do not know how to drive in snow. ugh.

I have an awesome present for my dh...can't tell but will after Christmas. Hope it gets here in time...... still waiting on one gift I ordered 10 days ago and they just shipped it yesterday! I was furious!

Mom got her flowers today so she will have them for Christmas...so that is good.

It is blowing like crazy out...half expect to lose electric tonight...... Jo

Edited by: SKIDEE at: 12/20/2012 (23:50)
Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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Today I feel like I'm blogging rather than posting to some dear friends...but I hope you guys get a chance to read through and pray.

My father-in-law only has 5 weeks to live. The girls, my brother and I stopped to visit. It was very hard. He said he wanted to go quickly. As we were leaving, my husband, his aunt who's a nurse and Hospice were arriving. The 5 week mark was given by his aunt. He asked us to come visit for Christmas...to say Merry Christmas for the last time. :-(

My stepmom is walking 4 times a day. She is doing OK, but pray that they get the itching under control (reaction to the epideral).

This morning, got Destini to school late, then went home, picked up my dad, then my brother and went to the hospital. We stayed for the buffet, I got some recipes from the nurses, and left with my brother, went shopping for some of the ingredients, dropped him off and he put them away, went to Destini's party. After that went to my father's with my brother and the girls, cried a bit there. When we got to the hospital, this wonderful church group came in and sang Silent Night for my stepmom and I cried again. We left, picked up McDonald's on the way home and now we are resting. I wish I could be stronger. I am so tired. I just need His perfect strength.

Elaine


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12/20/12 7:07 A

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Good morning...very tired...but wanted to ask you to pray for me for strength and clarity. I feel exhausted, but today is my daughter's Christmas party at school. I think I might just run my dad up to the hospital and then go get groceries and go to her school party today. They have a special buffet for the families today at the hospital, but I need to make sure we have food.

I need to get some of this one shake that I tried that I can replace meals with. I really need to lose weight so I'm going to do that and work on drinking more water. I'm going to have my dad go to the hospital without me this morning. There is a special buffet. Then I'm going to pick him up again for dinner later.

My head is spinning so I'd better finish eating before I finish this post. I hope everyone is having a great day.

I'm having a few issues with my body today, but perhaps it is the stress and all I am putting on myself. Last night I slept really good but I am exhausted this morning, sore, and need to pay more attention to my own health.

Today is my Uncle John's heart cath. Hoping he will feel better.

Destini is dressed for school, and now I need to get her and Salina lunch.

Elaine

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12/19/12 9:01 P

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Well, my stepmom's surgery is done. They won't know for a week about the pathology results. 40% of the uterus was cancer. He won't be able to tell us until the pathology lab gets the results back to him.

I got to the hospital at 6:30AM, and we left at 7PM. I'm tired.

I just found out that I don't have class until January 7th. This means I am super ahead!!! I am going to spend the next few weeks hanging with my dad and getting Christmas ready and finishing my house! God is so good! Pray I can be wise and that I can put in my resume at a few places, too.

Elaine

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12/18/12 5:38 P

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Jo: I am running to make it in time for Destini's pageant, but I just wanted to say, "Thank you". He did do something today that made me have to cut him off in mid sentence, and hang up because I didn't want to argue, but he ended up having to help his dad, and it made the day more complicated for me, but I think it humbled him. Yes, first I am thankful to God. He is doing SO much. And Sean is doing some too...not sure where he is most of the time...but I am fighting to make this Christmas special for the girls.

Elaine

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12/18/12 4:30 P

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DORE: How wonderful that your dh and son can be home over the holidays...even if it does make the budget a bit tighter. I'm praying that an abundance of trips fit together just right soon afterward to make it even out or maybe even better than even out! And in the meantime, I'm praying that God will lead you in ways to bless others and lead others in ways to bless you.

I'm praying your little granddaughter is OK and that the docs will find a simple solution to her symptoms.

ELAINE: I just prayed that God will continue to work in Sean and you...that He would bless each thing that Sean does that is for the family and that it would increase Sean's desire to grow in that area; that he would somehow realize that God is doing a work in and through him and that he would desire more and more of God's leading in his life. And I prayed that you, too, would be blessed by each little thing that Sean managed to do for the family, so that you will be motivated to continue to pray for him and that God would give you forgiveness and grace that you would be able to honestly and genuinely be thankful; first to God and then to Sean for each small thing. I was reminded to day how hard it has been for you. Dan and I were at the grocery store and someone in a motorized cart came careening around a corner while I was answering a question Dan had asked me so I was looking up at him as I was walking down the aisle. The lady in the cart ran into my arm, hitting my wrist with the corner of the cart. It REALLY hurt. I let out a little yelp....the person didn't stop or say anything.....and Dan blamed me, without any concern for my wrist. It REALLY hurt...for quite awhile. It was like getting hit just wrong on your "funny bone". But I was hurt more by his reaction......worried more about the cart than my arm, i guess. It certainly did nothing to that lady and no one seemed to care that my arm could have been really injured. It just would have been nice for someone to show a tiny bit of concern. I was crying it hurt so bad...I just didn't even want to be near Dan I was so hurt by his lack of caring. I told him to just go get the rest of the stuff....I had to go back to get something else....and I left until I could regain my composure. I don't think he has any idea that he did anything wrong. I"m just not ever "allowed" to be sick or hurt.... It actually scares me sometimes...what if I really DO get sick and need help? God will definitely have to provide. So anyway....I was reminded that being disappointed in our expectations of our relationships really IS HARD, but that as I have encouraged you to lean on God, that is what I needed to do. I'm still struggling a bit....trying to over come the resentment (can you tell I'm not quite there yet?) But I know that God will help me with that, too.

MARY and JANS: Hope things are OK even if crazy-busy (they are for all of us!) and that you will have a wonderful time with family and friends in this build-up to Christmas. Jo


Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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12/18/12 8:46 A

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Dore: Are you talking about Aurora, the little one? How old is she right now? I hope they don't find anything. I am taking that to the Lord as soon as I type this. Please let me know how it turns out.

Jo: I hope the surgery results turn out OK. I know how you feel. I feel the same way with my father-in-law. They are so hard. I am going to pray about this, though. I am too busy right now to visit him so far.

All: I'm sorry if I missed something in the posts. I'm a bit scattered, even though the Lord is helping to get everything done. I realize how rusty I am with hospitality. I know the Lord will help me get better. I simply never have people over. I realize how toxic my life has been through this experience all the more. I realize how for years I haven't been able to do Christmas cards and its been hard to Christmas shop. I have been driving myself really hard, but I am SO thankful for how much is done.

This morning my aunt posted that my dad's brother was hospitalized this morning for his heart. He has had multiple stents so this could be serious.

My father-in-law is having a great deal of pain. Hospice has not come yet. I'm not sure if he has arranged it or not.

My stepmom and dad were able to go to Salina's concert, as was my brother, his wife and his inlaws.

This afternoon my dad/stepmom are going to the hospitality house for the night before surgery so she can do her prep work. I will meet them tomorrow before the surgery.

Tonight is Destini's concert where the whole school sings. We will be taping that for my stepmom/Sean's mom. She will be wearing her new dress her grandma (Sean's mom) bought her.

The house looks great...toilet is still not working well. I suppose this will kick us in gear to repair things...and hopefully I will get more practice with hospitality. My parents are very forgiving though.

I have to run to take Destini to schoool. Sean started my car for me this morning...what a blessing that is, and I will make sure I tell him. He has a bit of painting and the microwave left to do...perhaps this will get done today. It would be great. Pray for him. He has so much to do.

Elaine

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12/17/12 10:58 P

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Good evening ladies,

The weather here has been really a bit strange. We are getting lots of moisture, but not in the form of snow. The mountains are covered which is very good, but it is just so mucky down in the valley.

Mike will be home tomorrow. Work slows down during this time of year for flatbed trucks because they usually move equipment. The weather is too cold for them to move produce right now so we will enjoy the time together and know that the Lord has something wonderful in store for us. He will take care of our needs. He is good all the time.

I have a prayer request. You remember that 3 yrs ago Rory was very sick with HSP. She has continued to have trouble with UTI's She just finished up a course of antibiotics. The then did an ultrasound. Today they did another test and found a high quantity of white cells in her urine. She goes in for another ultrasound tomorrow because the last one showed something they didn't like. After that she may need an MRI - right now we don't have any idea what she is dealing with. I will let you know what they find out.

Hope that everyone has a great week.

Elaine - keeping this very busy week for you in my prayers.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
Longfellow


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12/17/12 10:11 P

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Hi ALL: Things have been so crazy here, that I really haven't been tuned into the tragedy in CT. We were at the hospital in the surgical waiting room when we heard about it. Dan had gone to our senior's Christmas Party. I had signed up but then heard about my dil's mom's surgery and felt I needed to be there. Their family does things so differently...I never know what they would want, so I just try to do what I would want, and hope it ministers to them in some way. Anyway, I went to my Pilates class and then right home to change clothes and go to the hospital. When I go there, I found out that there had been some miscommunication about the times and they were already back in the room where she was being hurriedly readied for surgery b/c they were an hour late. (yikes! talk about adding stress!) Anyway, I did get to see her for a moment before they took her and I waited with Roger for the 3 hour procedure. When Dan came after the party, he told us about the shooting. There was a TV in the waiting room but it was all the way across (I hate being forced to listen to TVs in waiting areas!) so we had not seen any of the coverage. I went over and watched for a bit, once Roger had Dan to talk to.

We were able to hear the surgeon's report so that was good. We still don't know the whole scoop....they need the path report for that which they will get in the next few days. They went in laparoscopically but could not finish the procedure that way so they had to open her up a bit. They did a small intestine resection, taking out an ulcerated area. The key is understanding what caused the ulceration. They think it was probably meds that she has been taking for arthritis. While that is better than cancer...it isn't good b/c she needs meds for pain for her arthritis!! sigh. Anyway, they did not remove the smaller ulcer. I did not ask why (should have) but I think that it is probably b/c it was too far away and would have required another resection. I'm praying that the ulcers are not more than ulcers.
Sat. early, I had choir rehearsal for our cantata which is this Sat. Then did some picking up around the house for our Bible Study Party the next day. Early Sunday, we went to church. Right after church was dress rehearsal for the cantata...with all the instruments. It was almost 3 hours long! We all had pizza first. BAD!! Then I went straight home and had an hour to get ready for the party. WE had a blast at the party. Our pastor and his wife came too. They are younger than all of us but I think they really enjoy it. We played Yankee Trade (a white elephant gift game) and got them laughing. The pastor's laugh is very contagious so it's fun to get him going. We try to have some nice gifts as well as some dumb ones so there is a lot of trading going on. There was way too much GOOD food and chocolate. HELP ME!! I'm not doing very well. I keep trying to remember how I managed to not eat ANYTHING all last Christmas!! I need to go there again!!!

Today I had Pilates. I have been a bit discouraged. I'm in a very advanced class...just b/c the folks who come that day are advanced. It frustrates the instructor and I feel it. But then I get ticked b/c the classes are NOT arranged by ability or level and she is supposed to accommodate all levels. I definitely felt ignored today. I'm paying as much as the others and it bothers me but I really don't know how to handle this. If I say something...she is so hypersensitive, I'm afraid she will just tell me that she doesn't know how to help me (which is baloney) and then I'll be looking for another class somewhere else. ugh. But I have been so uncomfortable a few times that I'm about ready to. sigh.

Tomorrow I have to get to the mall (ugh) to get a last minute gift. Then I need to bake some cookies. Then we have dinner with friends we rarely get to see. (more food!) Wed. is the cantata. The grandkids (the two younger ones) will be coming with Dan and staying over night. Then Thurs. morning the older one will join us for cookie decorating.

Thurs. afternoon we will refinance our home...AGAIN. Once we get the new loan, we will pay most of it off, leaving a much smaller monthly payment. I want to just pay the whole thing off but haven't managed to convince Dan yet. This is a big move in the right direction, though. I just get tired of all the red tape. Friday, we have friends (and her mom) from NY coming and spending the night along with our two younger grandchildren. So we will have a houseful. Early Sat. they all leave and we drive to Indianapolis for Dan's extended family's get together. What a week!!

So I don't know how much I'll be on here....I'll try to drop in quickly.

Anyway...about CT.... I almost just feel numb.....sort of shell shock, I guess. My mind has mostly gone to the gun control hogwash (GUNS are NOT the problem, folks!!) which I think is sort of a defense mechanism. How much of this can we really take in?

I have felt very jaded about all the coverage....all the news and talk shows talking incessantly about it. I feel like they are exploiting all of those victims over and over. It makes me sick....so I just don't want to listen to ANY of it. But that doesn't seem like the right response either.....

May God have mercy on this country and grant us a wave of the Holy Spirit so that we have a true awakening!! Jo


Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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12/16/12 6:24 P

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Hi Everyone, Dave just took off for Green Bay. The weekends go so fast. I am heading to Green Bay tomorrow to finish up some shopping and bake my cookies at the apartment. I am also picking up some bar stools for the basement. Lots to do here before my company arrives on Friday.

Dore, it will be nice that Mike and Matt will be home for the holidays but not so great about not working until after the new year. Is it usually this way around the holidays? I would think there would be more shipping right now. All of our snow was washed away with the rain but it looks like a white Christmas may be in the forecast.

I will be back on Wednesday!

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/15/12 10:19 P

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Good evening all,

Just stopping by to say hi. I am still in shock over the tragedy of yesterday. My heart just breaks for those families. There are no words to expresses the pain of this situation.

Mike and Matt while have to spend the weekend in WI. Parts had to be ordered and the work wasn't finished today so they will have to wait until Monday to head home. After they deliver what is on board, they are coming home because there is not anything out there for a flatbed truck until after the 1st of the year. So Mike will be home for a bit. That's okay since I don't get to see him very much. Finances will get tight but we have been there before and have made it through.

Weather can't seem to make up its mind. Sun - snow - sun - snow. They are projecting some snow for the next few days.

Hope that you have a good weekend.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
Longfellow


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12/15/12 3:07 P

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All: Praying and crying with those in CT. My friend got to sing for the president yesterday and I hope it was comforting to them there. She has one of the sweetest spirits I know. She was there with the class she teaches.

Well we are making super progress! Salina and Destini helped me wipe down walls in the dining room, and Salina cleaned the room and made the bed in the room where my stepmom and dad will be staying. Sean is actually picking up the paint. I'm dropping the girls off at their Uncle Brad's this afternoon so they will have something to do out of the way. Then, its paint paint paint. It is so wonderful!!! I have wanted to do this for YEARS!!! God is SO good!

I am taking a break and then I'm going to drop them off. Sean will be back soon to get the painting done. They also have to fix the toilet and install the new microwave. I hope they get those 2 things done. Then, we won't have ANYTHING to do tomorrow except go Christmas shopping! If we get the microwave in, and the new finish on the light fixture, it will be like having a brand new kitchen!!! :-)

I said that it will be the best Christmas present ever, and Destini reminded me that she got me something from school, which of course, I said was SO special because it was from my special girl. :-)

Elaine

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12/15/12 5:25 A

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Good morning, ladies,

What a tragedy yesterday with the school shootings, how very sad. We need to bring God back to the schools.

Edited by: MERRYWON at: 12/15/2012 (05:33)
"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/14/12 5:19 P

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Dore: Praying as soon as I post this for Mike to return home safely and that it won't cost too much for the repairs. I also am going to pray for wisdom and a way to help this woman see the importance of getting more sources of help.

Mary: I agree...though with my MIL and SIL cornering Salina and telling me "everybody" in that side of the family hates me, it can be VERY discouraging. We have been going all day and not having time to spare for a visit but hopefully after this weekend, after my dad and stepmom go to the hospitality house for one night while she has her privacy to clean herself out prior to surgery, perhaps we can see him. Destini has a concert that night for school and will be dressed up so maybe we can sneak over there that day. Pray we'll find some special time.

All: ((Sigh)) So thankful to have my little Kindergarten girl home tonight. Praying for the families who are dealing with that loss tonight. I cannot imagine...so thankful, so sad. But, I know that I can feel the pain inside of what if, and that the tug on my heart is a need to pray. God has me to pray tonight for them before I go to my new bed.

Got the mattress, and my walls and windows in my room wiped down and some of the bedding washed. Just put together the frame myself (a simple metal frame, but still...its ready).

Elaine

Edited by: GIRL4ABBA at: 12/14/2012 (22:58)
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12/14/12 7:03 A

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Good morning, ladies, I am teaching at the college today. One of the teachers who I have become friends with, needed a day off more than I do. I will have a break from the chaos I have brought on myself.

Dore, I will pray for Mike and Matt to travel safely home. Dave is in WI, too, and hopefully coming back tonight. I will also pray for Mike to find just the right amount of loads to haul. We know that God always provides. You may find quite a burden lifted when you set a limit with your friend. It is no fun nor friendship when someone is draining you.

Jo, my plans to spend quiet time with the Lord yesterday did not pan out. I just can't seem to slow myself down right now. This year, more than any other Christmas. We are having the holiday here and there is lots to do. God knows that after Christmas, I experience a bit of a let down until spring and that is when I seek him most.

Elaine, Sean has had a hurtful relationship with his father. It helps to explain some of his behavior as we only know what we were taught. I am sure that God brought you into this family to help them. At times I have found myself saying, "Lord, you put me in the wrong family", but really, he puts us right where he wants us.

I best get ready for work!

Have a great day!

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/13/12 11:00 P

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Good evening all,

Thank you all for your input. I am keeping many ideas as to how to help her find rides without my being the driver. I am also praying for grace as I know that this is something I need to do with a gracious heart and also with the mind of Christ. But I also know that there is a limit to what I am able to do. I also think that I am just finding all the responsibility of everything, not just taking her places, but life in general is weighing me down.

I feel like I am in a box right now. - The fog tonight is so thick I can't even see across the road. It is even muffling the sound of cars going up and down the road.

Mike was supposed to be home to night. But he is stuck in Wisconsin while his truck is being repaired. Hopefully he should be home sometime on Sat. He talked with his dispatcher and found out the work is light right now. So things are going to be interesting around here for a bit. But we will just cut back and hang on until he is back to full speed with the driving.

Ladies have a great day tomorrow.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
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12/13/12 7:16 P

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Jo: He has been divorced from my mother in law for 25 years, but she managed to cheat him out of some money, and she likes to make things about her, instead of being supportive. He is living with a woman, although sometimes his heart seems to soften, he is VERY angry with Sean, and has been ever since Sean was a very young boy, somewhere around 2. Sean's mom would come home and Sean would be cowering in the corner. We took Jerry to dinner for Father's day (I had no idea how he was to Sean) and he told me without remorse how he would discipline Sean even when he didn't do anything, when the other kids did something wrong. After a few years Sean built up his trust until this investment thing. I didn't feel good about it from the start but before I knew it, he gave Sean money to buy 10 houses, and then, before I knew it, the partner needed money so I asked Sean to buy Jerry out if we refinanced them, and I signed. Jerry never saw the money, and neither did I. It destroyed anything Sean built up. :-( I stopped visiting with the girls because in front of them he would either swear at him, or call him a thief. We couldn't just be there. I tried to get Sean to make things right with his dad, and he tried working with him, but something else happened (since Sean stopped telling me anything) and for a while he threatened to kill Sean, and Sean was seriously hiding and dodging him. We were scared. Destini must have heard Sean talk about it because she was afraid to approach her grandpa...of course, even if he would come over he rarely would see the girls. I was pregnant with Destini when he approached me about the money Sean owed him. I didn't know and I told him I couldn't help him get the money back because I didn't see any myself. I wasn't there when they made their agreements, so I could only try to convince Sean to do the right thing. I told him I was sorry and I wished I could have done more. He never got angry with me, nor did he ever threaten me. He in fact said he understood the fact that I couldn't trust him myself and I had to get a good job. He said he would not be mad at me for whatever I had to do. He also told me he loved Brad my brother, and he always liked my dad. I will miss him terribly because really, though he's hard in many ways, he is real, and I know where I stand with him. I hope my visit tomorrow goes well with him.

I am SO close to getting my schoolwork done for this class!!! I have an 8 page Powerpoint and one post to a forum to do and then it will be super easy from there!

Sean moved the light where wires were dangling from the ceiling from the dining room to the room where my dad/stepmom will be staying. I hope to get everything done tonight so I can start painting tomorrow. It is hard when people are not working on stuff so I really need to keep the focus that it is MY project, not there's. I really think I would appreciate their help MORE if they did it on their own.

Elaine

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12/13/12 5:02 P

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ELAINE: I'm really sorry to hear about Sean's dad. That is tough news...especially if he is not a believer. Keep praying for him!! Ask Sean and the girls to join you in that. I don't know if they know whether or not he is a believer. If the are not aware, you can pray generally with them: for God to draw him "closer" to Himself or to strengthen the faith he has...etc.
In the meantime, show as much compassion to him, to his wife (yes, even her) and to Sean as you can. You know that God can give you grace beyond yourself. We are so weak in ourselves, but HE can make us strong!

You are right to take the painting on yourself, but try your best not to have a bad attitude about it. Just try to be happy with the results. I know this is hard...I would want to remind everyone that I had to do it b/c someone "else" wouldn't, but that doesn't glorify Christ and that is supposed to ALWAYS be our bottom-line goal.

MARY: Good for you! I have been working on my quiet time lately. I was getting kind of careless...just doing reading b/c I felt obligated....not b/c I truly longed to be with the Lord. I'm asking Him to change my heart and keep me looking to HIM.

DORE: I agree with Mary. When we tithe, it does not glorify God to give so much it puts us into debt, right? And God, Himself, told us there is a limit to our working. So, do your best to give her rides when you can, but set a limit. If there is a true emergency, I'm sure you have ambulances and she may have to use them. If you have to say no, say it as kindly as you can and if she is nasty, that is on her....not on you.

Many years ago I was babysitting for a neighbor, with the understanding we were "trading" babysitting...so when she needed to go alone somewhere, I'd keep her two girls and when I needed to go, she would keep my one little boy. Well, it seemed every time I needed help, she was unavailable. When I began to decline to sit for her (for nothing) she got all huffy and called me "anti-Semitic". That really ticked me off (OK...I wasn't as mature back then!) and I told the neighbor who told me she said that about me to tell her that if she lied and cheated people b/c she was Jewish, then yes, she would be right...but b/c I knew that was NOT the case...she just lied and cheated b/c that was who SHE was, it had nothing to do with being Jewish, and I just plain didn't like her. yikes. So DON"T follow that example, but do set a limit or boundary.

I had another friend whose husband was abusing her. She would tell me. I was powerless to do anything about it but I'd get angry with men in general. I finally told her if she would take action we would help all we could but if she were unwilling to DO anything about it, I no longer wanted to hear about it. That was sad, but I needed to not have it color my marriage.

ooops....time is slipping by..gotta run right now. Maybe later...Jo

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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12/13/12 12:05 P

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Mary: I missed my early morning this morning. I am glad you got it in. It is such a great way to start a day.

All; I don't have time to write much, as I am trying to finish as much school as possible, and someone unplugged my alarm clock and everyone was late this morning. I am trying to get myself going but I JUST ate for the first time today and took my medicine. It has been crazy already today.

Last night we found out Sean's dad's only option is hospice. The pill he was hoping to take won't work because his heart is too weak. I am so tired. It is a very emotional time, and I have let everything get to me. I have decided that it doesn't matter about everyone else's priorities. I am going to paint this kitchen and get everything done on Saturday. If Sean does nothing, that is on him. As for me, I would like a fresh coat of paint. For years I didn't do it myself because he would criticize my efforts. Well, I criticize his LACK of effort, so there. I think I would actually like it because I have to use a small brush for many of the areas in the kitchen, and with my illustration background, it will be old hat.

It is funny how things turn in your attitude when you don't try to force your priorities on others. I figure they either will come along for the ride or stand on the sidelines, but I am going to follow through with this. Time to finish my schoolwork...but I am trusting the Lord.

The interview went well. If I start it will be the first of the year. It is perfect. I am hoping for full-time but I believe it is part-time to start, which allows Sean to adjust to driving the girls...hopefully. I decided to give this to God. I need to let him fall on his face and stop trying to rescue him from his lack of effort. If he falls on his face in front of our girls, perhaps this will cause him to fall on his face before God and humble himself. It is in God's hands...although I hope my girls don't suffer. But, I am choosing to put my trust in Him.

Elaine


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12/13/12 7:39 A

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Good morning, ladies, I am up and about early again today. I am setting some time this morning for prayer, as my days are always with the Lord, but quiet time and listening have been scarce and the daily readings have been mentioning quiet time with the Lord and I know that is what I need in all this busyness. He has been blessing us by helping us get things accomplished and taking care of our needs in so many ways.

Dore, I have had a few relationships in which I have had to take a break from and or set boundaries. I was finding when certain women would call me, I would experience anxiety and I think it was because our relationship was one-sided and I felt really drained. They would go on and on about their problems yet refused to do anything about them and I was doing the same as you, doing things for them. I ended up taking a break from both women, they ended up getting by without my help and I had a break from frustration. They are now back in my life but with limits. One of them has changed greatly for the better. Having people say no to her caused her to turn to the Lord, who met her needs. The other woman is still complaining and her circumstances haven't really changed. I see her on occasion but set a boundary because I needed to.

Elaine, you are right in having the insight that the kids don't know what it is like to have company and don't know what it entails, you and I know what it entails and probably both tend to go a bit overboard. I know even my children sometimes think certain things are unnecessary but I do believe we all enjoy the house when it looks nice and clean and decorated, to me it is worth the effort. I was telling the kids that some things might have to go this year as I am too busy but guess what, they don't want to see those traditions fade and I believe they will be helping me.

Thankfully, I have a massage today as well. Hope you all have a great day!

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/13/12 12:20 A

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Mary: I haven't started Christmas shopping. I'm trying not to think about it until Sunday. At least I can this year. I am thankful for that, and we are getting some things done around here. It is improving by the day...I just got way too overwhelmed tonight and I felt frustrated with my daughter because she thinks the painting idea is stupid and doesn't take getting the house ready seriously. Of course NEVER having guests doesn't help kids to understand all the work that would go into it...plus I'm trying to cram all this schoolwork in. Then, I'm still coughing because my ears are draining down my throat. I feel better in the mornings, but at night its a struggle. I'm so glad you posted...I know I need to let my girl have fun and enjoy some sort of normalcy. She witnessed a fight between 2 girls in her classroom yesterday. She said one of the teachers who broke it up was on crutches today, and the other female teacher was injured too. :-(

Dore: I'm positive that is super hard. On one hand you want to help, and on another, the people in her family should be taking care of her.

All: Sean told me tonight that the pill they were going to try for Jerry is not going to work so his only option is arranging for hospice care at home. :-(

Sean got some things done today. Then, I got overwhelmed and felt like things weren't moving fast enough. I think it is fatigue, and I need to rest, but the coughing is keeping me up. He said he wants to get to sleep early and get up early...so I turned the TV off for him and Salina only to have her get in the shower. I plugged her phone into the dual charger and she unplugged it to take it up for her phone to her room. I was just sick of her selfish attitude so I just retreated to my room. It is so hard when I am hypersensitive, so I decided not to handle it now.

I want to be able to do all this but I feel so worthless as far as my father-in-law goes. He always fights with my husband these days and they have never been very close. He seems to like me though. I am going to pray for wisdom about this.

My brother needs to help too. He's going to on Friday a bit and then all day Saturday. I'm hoping for everything to be done on that day, including this stupid cough!!!

Elaine

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12/12/12 11:07 P

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Evening all,

Had a normal farm day and was looking forward to spending time sewing. But my friend called and she needed me to rush her to the hospital for a test that the Dr. said was urgent and ordered for this afternoon. I seem to be her only go to person. It is becoming more and more often. Telling her no sets her off and gets her very excited. I am dealing with feelings of being used. Due to the severity of her illness, she makes many trips a month to the Dr. She really doesn't have too many people to turn to - but - she does have family here and they won't even take her. Trying to keep all of this in the right perspective. Also trying to keep a servant's heart in this matter.

I know that everyone is busy with all kinds of doings at this time of the year. Stay safe if it involves lots of travel.

Hope you have a good day tomorrow.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
Longfellow


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12/12/12 9:19 A

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Good morning, ladies, I can see that everyone seems to be caught up with the hustle and bustle of the season. Sadly, a lady that was ringing up my order yesterday, said,"I can't wait until it's all over". We need to remember that Jesus is the reason for the season. There is lots to do but my favorite part is when the busyness is over and we can all enjoy.

Hope you all have a productive day!

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/10/12 10:59 P

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Jo: The delight I have in hearing from you and everyone here today is something that gives me strength as God continues to bless my situation. But that is not what I want to talk about. You are such a blessing, and I see the Lord working in your life, and in Dan's and it is truly strengthening. No matter how this whole thing turns out, my father-in-law, my stepmom, my marriage, my daughter Salina's challenges I see her facing as she grows into being a woman, and just everything, both blessing and trial...I'm giving them to the Lord and pressing on, working hard toward every effort to be and to raise a wise woman of God.

Tonight was so fun. I was tired but so glad I went to Destini's Christmas caroling at the nursing home and then a Christmas party at American Heritage Girls. It was truly delightful. The ladies there are precious. I feel unworthy of the blessings of friendship the Lord has brought into my life so often, but as I mature, I realize, they are AWESOME, but they are not just for ME to learn. I am intended to be a vessel for them, to encourage enlighten and absorb. That is what this is for me here. It is like I get to go to a special coffee place and you all are regulars too, and we lift each other up.

I wanted to ask everyone to pray for just ONE more thing...for now anyway. :-)

I have a job interview on Wednesday. I am hoping if they hire me I won't start until the first of the year though because of my family crisis. I don't know how it will go, but it is only 3 days a week...about 22 hours so far. I don't know exactly what they will ask of me. I think they are supposed to have us work a 4th day in January, but I will find out on Wednesday. I'm hoping the change will happen when my position starts. I am also hoping it will be a full-time position, as opposed to a part-time...with benefits. But God is in control. Sean and I talked and he committed to being the driver for the girls and also we talked about using the money to put at least Destini, and possibly Salina too, in Christian school.

Sean is making some progress but in some areas we are still struggling. One day at a time, trusting in the Lord as my Source and moving forward. It is ALL I can do. I am thankful for the progress.

Jo: Sean's dad's cancer source is now found. It began in the esophagus! Now we are concerned for Sean. Last year he had a terrible time with coughing. They found it was acid reflux. His cough lasted a long time. I'm so frustrated with him for not getting medical insurance with his business. We are going to have to sooner or later. But, in the meantime, I am researching this cancer.

Elaine

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12/10/12 12:11 P

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ALL: well Christmas is rapidly approaching! The social schedule is getting complicated and I'm feeling older.....oh, I guess that could be b/c I AM! I turned 63 last Wed. My kids managed to remember to call me so that made me happy. They went in on private lessons in photography. I had sort of "smelled that" coming from questions I was asked at Thanksgiving so when Dan asked what I wanted for my birthday, I suggested we see if I was right and if so I'd consider a new DSLR camera. I have wanted one for years but was afraid I'd never be able to figure one out. Also didn't know which one to choose. This will also take care of Chrismas for my gift from Dan ( and probably Mother's Day and our anniversary LOL so That is a relief for Dan.

Back to my birthday....Dan and I went to our bakery where we have our little coffee group intending to treat everyone but George's dd had beaten us to the punch. George is an older gentleman...a retired (divorced) high school principal.. One of his daughters had called and ordered a whole plate of "ruggala" (sp?) which are cookies made from rich pastry with cinnamon and raisins, and also to pay for any coffee or treat any of our group got. So I took full advantage and splurged. :-( yeah...my birthday wasn't too great for trying to get back on track, (but I've been doing better since). Anyway, we had a nice visit with our group there and then continued our Christmas shopping. We had lunch at the Cheesecake Factory with dessert at Graeters ( b/c I'm a rewards member, I had a coupon for a free Sundae!). You can see the way the day went. At least I just had cottage cheese for supper! But then we had Bible Study at our house and a gal who had her birthday on Dec. 2 brought a double chocolate cake to celebrate our birthdays. Sigh. But I was we'll celebrated....had a lovely day.

This past weekend was busy with Cantata Practice early Sat. Morning (Dan helped decorate the sanctuary while I sang). At 2 to 5 pm we had a surprise 70th birthday party for another of our Bible Study folks (his kids did a great job!). We came home for a couple hours and then went to a formal Christmas Party...with harp playing and a photographer taking pictures of all the guests, champagne and many amazing goodies....ugh. But we see folks we don't get to see often and always really enjoy the evening. Sunday began with church. I skipped SS b/c it was going to be question/answers about the study groups finding that changes our stand on women elders. I don't have as firm a position but do believe it is preferable. I know there a few people who are upset....there always are when there are big changes....and honestly...I just did not feel up to dealing with it...not that my "hiding from it will help, except it might help MY attitude for the moment. God is still teaching me patience........immediately after church, Dan and I split up again....he went to a memorial service for a friend who just died of pancreatic cancer (yes, another one!) while I was at yet another cantata rehearsal. I missed Thursday's and will miss this next Thursday's as well, plus this friend who died had no family to console and I knew the church would be full...she was a dynamo, starting several ministries serving the poor and lonely. Dan represented us well. We both got home at about 3:30 pm.

This morning is Pilates. I wrote my instructor but decided not to send it. My dd suggested I just keep going unless she actually TELLS me not to. I felt better after my session with my neighbors on Friday. We will see how it goes today. Then I have an Apple appt. I'm considering canceling. I really need to be at the gym instead.

I got word from my mom that her best fiend finally succumbed to Alzheimer's . The one son came down from Florida. They had a private interment and burial with just he, his wife, Mom and another friend. They had all gone to church, then Mom invited them to be her guest at the dining room. Then they had the burial . I know she is relieved for Bonnie and for her son but it is so hard for her to see all her loved ones dying and it makes me sad for her.

Also, having so many friends of ours dying....God is making the Salvation He has provided for me so much more "real" and I see my gratitude increasing exponentially. Healing we have so bountifully received physically is so much easier to grasp...and we are GRATEFUL! But how much greater the eternal healing He has procured for those who believe, and Bonnie and Karen and Bob and so many others are now enjoying in FULL!

OK....this got REALLY LONG...sorry....just chatty today, I guess.

Hope you all had a great weekend and that you are taking the time to think on what Advent really means. I know it is hard, but it is WORTH IT!! Jo


Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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12/10/12 11:56 A

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Dore: I am going to pray as soon as I post this that Mike will be able to get a load near his mom so he can visit her. I'm sure it will mean so much to her. I also would like to thank you for sharing. This is something we had to consider with Salina going to a public school. Personally, if I can get enough pay, I had originally planned to move just Destini to Freedom school, and Salina is really wanting her to be moved from the school she is in. But after this and the lack of discipline from the other students, I am seriously considering moving Salina there as well, however, today Salina is going to meet with her guidance counselor about dual enrollment. This allows her to go to college (mostly free of cost) while in high school. She wants to pursue something with animals, but she is not sure what just yet. If she does, I hope she will consider the college I'm attending. It is different for the younger students than it is for me. She can enter her sophmore or junior year of college when she graduates high school with dual enrollment. She has the drive. I believe in her. If she does that, I would not move her to the other school. We had the same discussion about the movies. This director that she is evaluating is really messed up. I don't like any of his movies except the one he animated called "Fox and the Hound" otherwise, his movies have a goth theme with a weak, absent father figure. He is really pretty much in love with horror movies. I also have this rule, and it is hard for me to fight through it with Sean at times, but he is resolved to keep rated r movies out too. I had an argument with him about it, particularly because we have Netflix and it has rated R. They also have weird ratings like TV - 14. Salina and I late one night looked at a few that had that rating and we resolved together that those pretty much had sex scenes in all of them. Then, we went to PG-13, and resolved that those were NOT free for the taking. I also told her that just because something is rated G she could not watch it with Destini, as I watched an older movie rated G and discovered it to be scary and bloody. It was about a princess so I thought it would be gentle but it was terrible. I wouldn't even choose to watch it, and I felt terrible that Destini saw even a part of it before I shut it off. It was good to sit WITH Salina to go from rating to rating to check out selections since she watches her little sister. I am determined to continue to stick to the no rated R rule too! I like it. Salina hated the movie she watched. She finished the paper. Hopefully it is all done.

I am praying for a call back from the job that I can afford their tuition with.

Mary: I got the idea that I should get some drawer knobs too from you. We got the lighting done. My favorite light is back in my dining room and out of my kitchen. It is perfect. :-) Anyway, the lights are brighter in both rooms. The one in the dining room is also the "daylight" light bulb. This week we have to finish: painting the kitchen/dining room, instaling the new microwave/removing the old one, fixing the toilet and if time, adding the knobs. It is in God's hands. This is the best Christmas present I could ask for. Oh, and Sean just sold the ceiling fan in this office and he's moving the dining room ceiling fan in here, so that's another thing that has to be finished before next MOnday when they arrive. But, hope that is seen is not hope at all, so I'm trusting the Lord. I am learning to throw off anxiety as it comes.

Time to start writing for today. I have the rough draft, power point presentation and one other paper to write. I am hoping to get MOST of it done before the end of this week.

Tonight we have a Christmas party for Destini's American Heritage Girls and before that we sing songs and hand out Christmas cards to the elderly. We are having so much fun learning and growing with this unit. There are only 4 girls and they are all SO sweet!!! I am hoping that Destini will become lifetime friends with them.

I'm sorry this is so long! I had so much to say...I hope you all are doing great!

I also want to say that I thank God for you all whenever I think of you and it is often. I am so blessed to have all of your wisdom and input into my life!

Elaine

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12/9/12 10:30 P

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Good evening all,

Yes - it was a good time spent with Mike and Matt. We don't have Matt's company too much when he is home. We turned the top floor of the house over to Matt and he usually stays up there. It is almost a complete little apartment up there. He only needs to come down to use the kitchen. He has a small frig and besides his bedroom, he has a small sitting area that he uses as a living room. Since he tries to keep his driving hours when he is home, he is up at night while Mike and I sleep. So we just don't bump shoulders that much.

The men have pulled out and are headed east to make deliveries in Iowa and Wisconsin. I don't know where they are headed after that. Mike would like to visit his mother just before Christmas but it will depend on the loads that will be available.

It is cold here but not too bad. It is only 8:30 and it is down to 26 but for here and winter that is normal. It is not really very bad if the wind is not blowing.

Elaine - to be honest with you - I might have issues with the assignment that Salina has. I was very careful with what movies my children watched. I controlled that right up to the day they left for college. The two movies you mentioned would not have been allowed in my home. We have a rule that we adhere to to this day - no R movies. I understand that there are some very good movies out there with good story lines that have been rated at R. Yet we do not allow them into our home. I think that you did a very good thing by having Destiny distracted with something else in another room. One of the things I would probably have done was watch the movie with my child, then we would have discussed what the movies was teaching and how it lined up with the Bible.

Can I say that I am glad I am not having to deal with children in the school system now. I would have been one of those parents......... I stayed very involved in all of their lives. I have heard horror stories and I am not sure I would have dealt with it well.

Jo - in the midst of all your activity I do pray you have some time for yourself and that you ca find time to rest and destress.

Hoping that you will all have a great week.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
Longfellow


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12/9/12 9:41 P

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OMGoodness, we have gotten about 6 inches of snow so far and looks like it will continue through tomorrow. Dave needs to drive 4 hours tomorrow to get to the airport so I hope the roads are clear.

Elaine, it sounds like you are making some progress in your house. I am working on my kitchen, too. I got the wall paper removed, the sanding and priming done and tomorrow I hope to paint. I need to buy some knobs for my cupboards. I don't know how the people before us managed without for 20 years as some of the cupboards really need them. I need to buy a light for my dining room, too, but waiting until I find the right one.

Dore, I am planning on doing minimal teaching before Christmas, too much to do here. I may pick up more days after Christmas but enjoying my time at home. I hope you get some snow, I know how it helps for moisture and also insulating the ground so the frost doesn't go down so deep. I hope you enjoy your time with Matt and Mike and things slow down before Christmas.

Jo, this is a busy season indeed. Dave and I had a Christmas party tonight, too, and really had a good time. We have been so busy it has been good to get together with friends.

I need to make a trip to the cabin this week, hopefully we will be able to drive in. We have winter boots, Christmas decorations and other things in storage that I need to retrieve. Can't believe Christmas is coming so quickly.

Edited by: MERRYWON at: 12/9/2012 (21:58)
"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/9/12 6:09 P

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Dore: Its good to hear from you. I hope you had a nice time with your family while they are home. I hear you about the cold but no snow. I would love to see a nice blanket of snow before my dad and stepmom come...it was cold and rainy but I had to get some groceries today.

It sounds like we are all so incredibly busy. I hope to get some quiet time tomorrow and pray for us all. This year is crazy, but at least things with Sean are not as bad as usual.

Today we shopped all morning online for lights for the kitchen. After looking constantly, I gave up and he seemed to be leaving for Kalamazoo for work but the roads were a bit slippery so he stayed in town and worked on my house. He found a really nice light, but he has to spray paint it to make it the right color. What is nice is Lowes had the perfect finish. I am really feeling that trip to the store. We stopped at this one cheap store and I was really feeling dizzy so we left, and went to the grocery store. By the time we were done...I was spent.

So hopefully he will make some progress tonight on the kitchen.

Salina's English teacher has them evaluating movies. They are from this director who stinks. He did the Nightmare Before Christmas, which she is watching right now. He also did Edward Scizzorhands. I never watched them, nor have I ever wanted to. Instead of making a huge deal, we put Desi in another room to watch something different, and I talked to her about some weird movies and how sometimes we as Christians need to see them ourselves to have a defined perspective on them.

Well, today I had a voice for a short time, so I must be getting better.

Elaine

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12/8/12 8:52 P

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Evening ladies,

I have been reading all the posts. Elaine is busy with school and is getting her kitchen done. You have shone great patience if it has taken as long to get your kitchen done. Jo - you stay so busy. I am amazed at how you keep everything going. Mary - you also stay busy with your kids and teaching.

I have found myself busier than normal. I have one more appointment and then I will have taken care of all that is one the books. I know that there are those surprises but I can handle that.

Mike and Matt are home for the weekend and then are off again tomorrow sometime after church. I spent some time with the ladies of the church and we decorated. I have a tree that I have to take care of tomorrow but we should be done.

It was very cold this morning but no snow. It tried but just couldn't reach the ground. We could use the snow too.

Have a blessed Sunday ladies.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
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12/8/12 6:58 P

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Jo: You are so busy. I feel guilty that I am not getting anything done tonight. I have an ear infection and some ear pain and dizziness and I can't talk. I've been fighting to get something done all day. The girls helped some and Sean did a bit of caulking today but no patching and a ton of cooking (which left a huge mess in my kitchen). :-( But, I am thankful for his efforts...it is a long time coming for sure...and anything done is better than it was.

I made Salina sit at the table for breakfast while I read this book called "On Eagles Wings" that Destini wanted me to read. I just read the introduction, but it is a bible study/observation from an expert wildlife conservationalist about how God compares eagles to Christians. So far it is AWESOME. I was moved by it. Then, I had Destini make me a bookmark for the book. She had fun.

Salina was wonderful at first today but I think she had an attitude off and on today. Then, Sean called her on it. I just walked away. I didn't agree with everything he said to her, but I thought since it was every effort to get a sound out it wouldn't do any good. I think I'm learning what you told Mary, and I also prayed this after he left. I said, even if he trips over his own 2 feet (he's taken the girls 2 nights in a row to movies, last night to the theater and tonight to a church to see "Monumental", he is supposed to be the head of this family, and any effort is better than nothing at all, just like the kitchen. I just gave them to the Lord. I finally feel like the Lord is taking hold of this part of me. I still question his loyalty to me, or his love for me, but I no longer feel like I have to define myself by it, or the lack of sincerity in it. I'm so tired tonight, and after they left I was in tears, and I picked myself back up emotionally and prayed through it. I realize I just need to do so much then, rest. I've been so sick.

Destini was so sweet today. I think she was a bit under the weather, so I gave her a bath, and tonight she is SO excited to go to see my friend's daughter who treasures her as much as she does this girl (who is something like 11). What an incredible family. I used to compare myself to them, and make my decisions based on them, but I've realized that I don't have what they have, and I have to move forward with that realization.

Tonight I've been fighting to concentrate, so I think I'll do what I typically do in this situation: organize the work. I'm going to sit down, watch a movie and create my reference page first, and then my introduction paragraph and just write what I can. Tomorrow, if I feel better I will do more. I finished this week's work on Thursday. I'm so mad because I could have been so much further but I've been sick for 2 days, and it has to be my ears because I'm dizzy and can't talk.

Elaine

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12/8/12 6:21 P

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Mary: I'm jealous! I'd love to have some snow! It has been unseasonably warm here. Just doesn't feel like winter or Christmas.

I know you and Dave disagree on discipline but you BOTH need to come together. That might mean you more than him.....he is the head of the household and HE will be held responsible. You will be held accountable (as will I) for how well we submitted. Ouch. I know I messed up in that area and I know it contributed to the chaos we endured.

Elaine: I'm thrilled that you have your school work so organized and that some major things are getting completed on your house. Praise God from whom all blessings flow!

JanS: great to hear from you! You are always so encouraging!

All: busy day today....choir, shopping, surprise birthday party for a man in our Bible Study, and now a big Christmas Party that I look forward to each year. Gotta run. Jo

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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Mary: I wish we lived near each other so we could walk and pray together. It is so important for us to get some time regularly to be spiritually refreshed. I am going to pray for you as soon as I post this. Last night I was feeling rough, and yesterday I took time to look at the majority of the writing that I have left and I think I can do it. I took some time to rest in the afternoon. I needed a mental break...and some rest. I wish I would have taken a nap, but I did rest and drink fluids. I agree, stress plays a major role with sickness. It is important to take moments to be refreshed. My family went to the theater last night and I stayed home to work on schoolwork, but I ended up cleaning all night and my house looks so much better. Then, I watched a Christian movie called "New Hope". I was able to really look at how a young teenager can make a difference in their school. It also dealt with teenage suicide. My daughter watched that viral video online featuring a young lady who eventually took her life, and there is a "show" online that deals with a teenager's reaction to that video and the fact that the young lady took her own life. One girl cried really hard. It was shown in Salina's school to help students see the importance of not putting things about yourself on the internet and also how bullying can destroy lives.

All: I don't have a voice. I'm hoping to get a bunch done, but I would rather just sleep. I'm hoping to get a majority of the writing for week 3 done today. Week 3 doesn't start until next Tuesday so I'm hoping to get on Week 4 by then and it will simply be the final draft (my edits) of my research paper and my Powerpoint for the writings for that week. Once I get that Powerpoint written, I'll have Salina look it over and then I will be able to wait for my group classmates edits and be able to simply wait until then to submit the final drafts of both the Powerpoint and research papers. I also have a system for each week for discussion board and I will finish the main topics of discussion next week too. Once I am done with those, I will be free to paint if Sean is not done yet. Pray he gets the majority of painting done while I am writing. I just have to do a small brush along our tile because someone used painting tape on it before and left a mark. I am so sleepy, so I'd better go get as much writing done as possible.

Elaine

Edited by: GIRL4ABBA at: 12/8/2012 (13:03)
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12/8/12 4:12 A

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Good morning, ladies, we are in a winter advisory for snow this weekend, the last time we had snow, I thought it was here to stay but the rain came and washed it away. I am up too early, lots on my mind. Dave and I got into a bid disagreement about the kids, discipline and him not backing me up. He lets them get away with so much which is not good for anyone. I just feel like taking off and going to Green Bay and let him deal with his spoiled children. I just spent time in prayer, begging God to help us work together and resolve some of these issues. Dave needs to step up.

Elaine, I think the stress is a big factor in getting sick. I am finding the same thing this year. I have been on antibiotics twice and dealing with neck and back issues. Everything is more difficult when you are not feeling well. It sounds like Sean is stepping up to the plate and helping you get things accomplished that are important to you. Make sure you let him know you appreciate it. I pray it will continue.

I just took some Tylenol pm, hoping that I will be able to get a bit more sleep. My back is bothering me.

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/7/12 10:29 A

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Here's the update: Right now, Sean is working on putting some trim in the kitchen. The things that need to be done is to patch everything, paint that,and the walls in the kitchen and dining room.

Later, after the prayer below, I got a call from the refund office at the school and they told me the amount, which is $1,000 more than I thought. It is great for this time, but I hope not to need it the next 2 semesters as I hope to be working a full-time job. But at this time, it will help me get a new mattress, and get through Christmas, and keep some for emergencies. I am not fond of loans, but with the desperation I've had I just accepted the full amount until I find a good career-launching position.

Just before that, Sean called and told me that he got a huge check from one of his customers and I was able to get groceries. I am still not confident this will last, but I am thankful. The other day, I asked him when he traded his business for the welfare of his family. It has been way too long that he has not pulled ahead. With business, at least some of the year, in order to survive, you should be able to gather money for the slow season. It has never happened for us.

I woke up with that virus attacking me again. This morning, however, it is most likely an infection. The nurse is calling the doctor to see if they can call in a script for antibiotics.

Well, I finished week 2 of the class, and today I am working on week 3. Time to pull ahead. I counted and there are 9 things I could finish before my family comes for school.

Sean is taking the girls to see the movie Monumental this Saturday. It is a powerful historical movie. I am going to stay home and work on school. It is our friend's youth group. I'm praying for Salina to have ONE good Christian friend that can encourage her, but if she felt connected it would be such a blessing!

I hope you are all doing well!

Elaine

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12/6/12 11:07 A

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Mary: Today I read Jan's FB post and it changed my entire day. It was simply about the virgin birth and a question of what I was expecting from God. I stood up and loudly (no one is here) declared that I was going to believe God was going to see all the things that need to be done through and I was choosing to trust Him on everything that I was doubting earlier. I just made that choice, and I am also going to pray as soon as I post this for your husband's promotion and for your daughter Lindsey to choose to contact you. I am so sorry for that. I wonder about that with my girls. Everything is so crazy. Salina is not willing to go to youth group at church...and she is making friends but I worry about her. She has a boy that keeps bugging her and she says she wants to be his friend, but he wants to meet her at the library to study. I told her to tell him I was not going to allow her to meet him, but she said she could handle it. I talked to Sean about talking about the guys' perspective on it and he said he would.

Praying for all the stuff to be done in my house for Christmas and all this schoolwork. Trusting the Lord to see it through.

Elaine

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12/6/12 9:00 A

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Good morning, ladies, it is a blustery day, indeed, and I need to head to Green Bay this afternoon. Dave will be flying in tomorrow and I will be picking him up. Next week he has an interview for a promotion which would allow us to get rid of our apartment in Green Bay and have him fly out each week right from Escanaba. This would help us to be able to pay off our house more quickly so he could retire, if that is God's plan.

Jan, it is a good idea to stock up on healthy items at this time of the year. If I get off track now, I could do a lot of damage over the holidays. I am bound and determined not to make this Christmas season about the food. My body has been rebelling from years of overeating and I need to listen and God has been helping me with that. Here's to eating healthy!

Elaine, sounds like you are making progress on work that needs to be done. How wonderful that your stepmom is willing to pray with you. God can bring good out of everything (if we let him).

Kathie, it is good to hear from you and glad that you are spending time trying to capture the peace among all the hustle and bustle and making memories with your grandchildren. Will you be having them over for Christmas? My sister and her boys are coming to join us this year.

Jo, most of my shopping will be online as the kids emailed the items they wanted to me. I may pick up a few extra things while in Green Bay. I try to avoid the crowds whenever I can. My daughter, Lindsay, has not talked to me since she was here in August. They moved to Vermont and were supposed to stop on their way through and did not even contact us. Tim and Christina have not even met there new BIL nor have the relatives here. It was very hurtful. She sent an email to family members that she does not have phone service at her home with her cell phone, so basically she has to make calls when she is away from the house. I do not even have her new address. I have been debating what to do about Christmas. I usually send her a check or she emails me a gift that she wants but she has not communicated with me. I have tried emailing and texting and only got one not so nice response a while back. I am not sure what to do.

Well, I best get busy so I can take off at a decent time. Have a great day!

Edited by: MERRYWON at: 12/6/2012 (09:09)
"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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12/5/12 7:56 A

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All: I got one good-sized project done, and today I hope to finish the bulk of writing due this week. Then, I plan to finish next week's larger writing assignments. I plan to read and write as hard as I normally do for a class, but spend more time on it.

I asked my stepmom if we could gather in a circle and pray for my stepmom before she goes to her hotel room for the pre-op prep. She is happy to. I figure this will help us all with the anxiety that goes along with surgery and cancer too. This is just one of the wonderful things the Lord is doing through this awful situation. My father-in-law is doing the same so far. I am trying to keep in touch with my sister-in-law about his condition since I don't have much time except for writing the next few weeks.

Dore: Thanks for sharing. I really need to focus on that. I am praying for wisdom every day. God is in control and He has a plan. My stepmom called last night and they will be helping with groceries. I am really encouraged by you and Jo to focus on the right things throughout this whole thing. We might be getting some of the things done around here, but I don't see it yet. Pray with me that Sean will get everything done before the family gets here. Our toilet needs to be reset because it is not sealed to the floor so he has to spend an hour to fix that, and there is still the painting left to do. When Sean worked at his aunts, they came up with a barter for his refacing some cupboards the aunt is giving him a microwave that fits where ours is, and ours needs to be replaced. I am just going to start praying really hard that things get done. I'm not going to talk to him about it from here on, just ask him to pray.

Jan: I will pray for you concerning your back. My lower back bothers me from sitting her writing all day on my computer and I have to stretch throughout the day. I am going to keep praying as well. You guys are such a great example of that. Isn't it awesome that the Lord provided just what you needed to finish your job? That is also faith-building.

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12/4/12 11:12 P

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Hello everyone
It seems my November was so busy I did not get on here at all. We were working at a house in the woods with no internet connection. Since we stayed out there 2 or 3 days at a time when I got back home it was catch up time on so many things. By the time I got to email and facebook I was done.
We made a decision to close up the job Dec 1 and finish it in the spring. The timing was right because the propane tank ran out of gas the last day. We used our portable heater while we finished the last tasks and closed things down. The couple that own the house wanted to send us the final check even though the job is not finished. That was a blessing.
Some of you read on fb that I took a fall on the ice on Thursday. I was a little sore but not bad so went back to work. Well Friday and Saturday I helped finish hanging drywall on the second level so lots of toting things up and down. Then we did the cleanup that is always lots of physical work. Sunday morning I could hardly move. We stayed home from church and I was on the couch most of the day. But Dale prayed for me and the pain reduced so much. It was amazing. The day of rest was good for me. Today I am feeling very well.
In all this I stepped on the scales today and realized I have gained a few pounds. So I have made the decision to get it off. I went shopping and got good stuff to eat. I set a couple goals for the week and we will see how I do by the weekend.
I just read the posts here so am caught up with you for this month. I will find some time to glance over the November to see what I missed.
Prayers for you all.


Janice

"Without God I can do nothing. But with Him all things are possible."




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12/4/12 10:49 P

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Good evening all,

Elaine - I will add this request to my prayer list. God will open the doors that will aline with His amazing will for you. If He chooses to close this door that is because there is something better and more in line with His will. He really does have our good in mind. When we walk according to His will and His word, He takes care of us.

I know that is is very hard as a mother to see your children not getting what you feel to be necessary in their lives. I was raised by a single mother and her mother. My mom worked several jobs and my grandmother kept the house. They did the best that they could be but there was so much that other children had that we never had. The memories that I have come from the times we spent together. Its not the toys, the things, or even the trips because we didn't take any. It was the evenings sitting in the living room sharing our days, making up stories, and playing board games. Then at Christmas it was the marathon cookie baking. We would have giggle fests, tickle times, and we even sat and sang songs. Those are the things that drew us together. Often God blessed us with gifts of food when we were not expecting it. One year I returned for the summer to find that mom's power was turned off. I had enough money that I was able to get it turned back on. The things I remember are the surprise blessing God rained down on us as a family. BUT that is because my mother and grandmother saw the blessings instead of the problem. It was their attitude and outlook that shaped how we children saw our lives. As an adult I realize we were poor, but as a child I had such a rich life because my mother and grandmother helped us to see life through different eyes. It is how we look at things that form our memories.

It has rained now for over a week. Staying inside seems the best thing to do right now. I do have to wrap up twice a day to go out and feed the cow. But other than that I tend to stay inside.

Hope everyone's week goes well.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
Longfellow


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12/4/12 10:21 A

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All: Please pray with me for favor with Liberty Mutual. I really like their mission statement and the pay is MORE than I need to take care of ALL the needs of this household. I don't want to have my children live another year without knowing whether we'll have anything decent to eat, or if stuff is going to get shut off, or whether they will have a Christmas.

Sean is taking the girls to his family's gathering on Christmas Eve without me, because my stepmom is coming home that night. It would be a quieter day for them without my kids. I am sad that Sean would do that. They didn't bother to invite us the last few years. It is something I suppose I will have to get used to in the long run.

I am trusting in the Lord with it though. If the Lord has a plan in this, I am willing to see what it is. The kids are in the Lord's hands. I don't trust any of Sean's family. Oh well...life is what it is. I need to keep Christ in the center and focus. It goes beyond simply what makes me mad or sad. I don't know everything Christ has in store. But with everything that is going on, He will come through as long as I trust Him. He will deliver me in the right time. I know this.

Today is a new day. I hope everyone gets in a good walk and their water.

Elaine

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12/4/12 8:33 A

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Jo: We have the same kind of weather here, but it will be dropping soon. I just hope the snow hits on a time when my dad and stepmom aren't traveling down here. It is so awesome that you had a special time for your grandson. 7 is the age that I try to do something special for my kids on their birthday. I'm not doing birthday parties every year...mostly because I can't afford it, but I don't think its bad to do just a little thing at home. It is such a blessing to have a family to share it with.

I LOVE what you said "they are watching". I have been really convicted of that lately. I'm going through so many things at once...they make my head spin. But I'm praying every day that I won't miss what HE is doing in this situation, and not get too caught up in what is busy.

Elaine

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12/3/12 10:59 P

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Kathie: it w so good to hear from you! Sounds like you had a great weekend with your grandkids! We had a family party for our grandson's 7th birthday. His parents have been dealing with a lot between job issues and our daughter-in-law's mom being back in the hospital and her father being seriously ill...... Anyway, we had a nice family gathering they could enjoy for a short time (all except my son, who was at the firehouse)

Elaine: I'm really glad you made the effort to get to church. That honors God and refreshes your spirit and your kids are watching.

Mary: hope you and your friend had a nice time taking your dh to the airport and afterward.

Dore: glad you and mike had some time together, even if the weather was a bit gloomy. That can sometimes even be romantic. :-)

All: I was very discouraged this morning. My Pilates instructor essentially implied that I should not be in her class. Most of the problem is that my legs and feet cramp a lot (don't really know why) and that gets in the way of my ability to always do what she is asking me to do. She said (essentially) that I need to take private lessons. Well that would be nice but it costs 3X more! I left there really bummed and don't know what to do now. I thought I was just getting a schedule figured out that would work so I could take more than one class a week.....

Tomorrow Dan and I are going to try to knock out some Christmas shopping but we really don't have many ideas so I hope we don't get too discouraged about that, too!

It is so warm here, I did not wear a coat today and tonight I have a big window right beside my bed wide open and the heat turned off! Weird! Jo


Trust in the Lord with all your heart; lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight. Prov. 3:5-6


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12/3/12 9:42 P

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Kathie: Sounds lovely...I'm picturing myself going there right now. Which mountains are you near again? I remember picturing it before, and it sounded so nice. I am hoping for the best Christmas for my kids even with all the sickness. God is in control. He has a mighty plan. I am working hard and will be up late but I still believe.

All: I got more inquiries from the lady who's doing the hiring at the part time position south of here. It is a bit of a drive, but I need the money, and the hours are pretty compatible with the girls' school. Praying that it will all work out. If not, I have so much school to get done in 2 weeks.

Elaine

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12/3/12 11:36 A

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Hi everyone,
Taking a moment here to check in with the group. It was a busy and pleasant weekend with grandkids staying over. Our village had it's Winterfest craft sale on Saturday, so I took four grands there to enjoy the morning. Our church hosts a Nativity display where folks can enjoy a little peace and reflection during the rush and bustle. It was beautiful as usual, and now in our fourth year guests from outside the church family are discovering it. A blessed addition to this village fair.

All is well here. Our community choir, Joyful Noise, has a a busy weekend coming up with concerts on Saturday and Sunday, then we're done until after New Years.

Blessings to all!
Kathie

Happiness comes not from doing what one likes to do, but from liking what one has to do.


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12/3/12 10:49 A

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All: I didn't get anything done yesterday. I did make it to church though. I also got to bed early and as I said we did get a walk in. It is time to get tons of schoolwork done in the next 2 weeks in order to minister to my dad and stepmom. I also have been praying more for Sean. He has worked a marathon since the electric was turned off when my dad was here. He has tons of catching up to do. There are so many things to buy and bills to pay. We have to get a new mattress so we can use the old one for the guest room. I'm determined to get this stuff done. I am really blessed that my daughter was able to help me with my visual design school project. I hadn't used the tool in Word before to create charts or graphs and it is SO handy! I'm excited to get it done.

I have to get that done and a few more things for the first week, and they are due today. Once I do that, I have to contact my brother and talk to him about all that is going on. With autism, change is really hard, and with this bringing up everything with my mom, I know it is hard for him.

The Lord is bringing people to help and pray. I am so blessed. :-)

Elaine

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MERRYWON's Photo MERRYWON Posts: 6,931
12/3/12 9:28 A

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Good morning, ladies, I am getting Dave packed up as well as myself. My GF and I are bringing him to the airport and then staying the night and doing some shopping.

Dore, our weather has warmed so much that all our snow has disappeared. Yesterday afternoon I went horse back riding with my daughter and her friend, I rode until past dark and felt uncomfortable continuing and the girls had to be dragged in the house at 8:30 for supper. I hope you and Mike had a nice weekend together. It is difficult to say goodbye and have them gone again, isn't it?

Elaine, I am sure that you are looking forward to being done with classes so you can focus on enjoying Christmas. When is your last day?

Jo, I wanted to watch the video you posted on FB for me and I have been trying to update my Adobe with no success. I think I am going to have to spend some time getting some online help with the situation "one of these days" or have one of my kids do it for me. I am definitely not patient or techy. Hope all is well with you and Dan.

I will be back tomorrow night, so much I would like to do before Christmas, but trying not to stress. I may have to adjust my goals.

Have a great day!

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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GIRL4ABBA's Photo GIRL4ABBA Posts: 2,309
12/2/12 7:44 P

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Dore: I hope that you and Mike had a good day even though it was gloomy. Sometimes being together is the best thing. My husband is rarely home...I am one whose love language is spending time. He hates being around me just to relax together. :-( It is hard to deal with that, and his not wanting to talk either, but I remind myself that God is my Source. He is going to deliver me out of this mess somehow. I prayed for Sean tonight with Destini when I put her to bed, that his life would be centered on Christ, that he would love his wife as Christ loved the church, and cherish her. I also prayed for all the family members who need healing. I also prayed for Salina to find a youth group that will challenge/encourage her to follow the Lord.

All: I just found out that I don't have to have that last thing done until next week. I am determined to work hard tomorrow, but the lack of sleep is catching up to me so I am going to evaluate a few people's work and then go to bed early.

I have a friend who is bringing a meal while my dad/stepmom are here. I am so tired...not thinking clearly. I hope everyone is having a good day.

We got a walk in today on the nature trail. Salina and I are dealing with fatigue and headaches tonight, so we are going to rest and get to bed early. Going to make some chamomile tea w/honey for us.

Elaine

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12/1/12 9:32 P

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Hi all,

It was a gloomy wet day here. After running to town for a small errand Mike and I spent the afternoon watching football and just enjoying each other's company.

I just wanted to check in and see how everyone is doing.

Have a great day tomorrow.

Dore

Believe you can and your halfway there.
Theodore Roosevelt

The talent of success is nothing more than doing what you can do well and doing well whatever you do.
Longfellow


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GIRL4ABBA's Photo GIRL4ABBA Posts: 2,309
12/1/12 9:20 P

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All but one project to due and Salina is going to help me with it. I am going to catch up on my sleep tonight though. I didn't sleep hardly at all last night and I got everything but one thing and I think there might be a peer review thing to do too. Then, I am hoping to be starting next week on Monday even though the new week starts on Tuesday morning.

Destini hopefully will catch up on her sleep too. Salina has a ton of homework to do too.



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GIRL4ABBA's Photo GIRL4ABBA Posts: 2,309
12/1/12 10:02 A

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Mary: I missed the post about your wanting prayer for your class that you asked about their future. I hope that went well. Salina said that she is surprised at all the students in her school that don't care about their grades. I hope that inspires them to do better.

All: I got the things done that were due yesterday, and today I am working on the rest. We got up a bit late, but were woke up by our friends calling to find Sean. Apparently that is where he was last night (he never called or texted to say he wasn't going to be home until late). I am done with breakfast and it is time to tackle the rest of what is due this week. I think I'm doing really well so far. I was panicked for a bit yesterday as everyone is having trouble figuring out what we need to do.

Salina got to spend the night with her friends from her homeschool group. It was so good for her. She looked so cute with her hair in 2 ponytails. :-) I think my daughter is enjoying being a girl and having fun. That was one of my goals! Praise God!

Last night Destini woke with pain in her foot, and then she missed her sister, then she heard a noise, then she had a nightmare. We got to sleep until about 7AM when the phone rang. Oh well! The coffee tastes good today.

I am so hoping I get that job! I could use 30-35 hours of work that doesn't interfere with the girls' school! Class is going well. Once my dad gets here, no matter what we will have some distractions, but I can handle it. I just have to plan ahead. I might just go to the library for a few hours a day after the girls get home from school so they can spend some time together and I can get a bit done a day. If I do that, then I can keep up.

Last night before I went to bed, with not knowing where Sean was, I gave him to the Lord and spent some time in praise and worship. It was good that he was with our friend. Some work got done at least. He may make some extra? Maybe he will spend some here. I just don't know what end is up. It is not something I dwell on, especially with so much going on. Since I know all my assignments now, I am hoping to work ahead in the next week. That way I can simply do the interactive stuff while they are here. It will be a super busy week but SO worth it!!!

Jo: How is Dan?

Dore: I hope you have a great day with Mike. I'm glad you guys have water and the cow is secure.

Mary: How are you feeling? Are you scheduled for surgery?

Jan: How is your back? I hope you don't have any soreness this morning after your fall.

Kathy: I hope you are doing well. I can't remember if your daughter ever got that job she interviewed for. I hope she is having success, and you are enjoying some time with Aurora.

Kathie: I hope you are also doing well and enjoying the fruits of your harvest.

Candy: I don't know if you are checking in here these days, but I hope you are doing well.

I hope I didn't miss anyone...I'm still waking up...time to dive into the shower and some schoolwork. I'll be glad to get everything done today. Once I stay ahead of things, I can focus on my family. I want to make the room for my stepmom perfect.

Elaine



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MERRYWON's Photo MERRYWON Posts: 6,931
12/1/12 9:35 A

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Good morning, ladies, and welcome to a new month with only 25 days until Christmas and counting. I am determined that I will not let this holiday be about the food. I have been striving to eat better since I had the gall bladder attack at my sister's and have been doing quite well and feeling better because of it. I will have my first challenge tonight as we are invited over to our friends for dinner and marbles.

Jo, I am taking to heart what you shared about the Sabbath and taking Sundays off from work. I would like to try and do that. I know how rewarding it has been for us in the past.

I will be back later to catch up. I need to help Christina load the horses. She is going to work with a trainer today with the new horse. She is hoping to show him and sell him in the spring.

Have a great day!

"Change never happens until the pain of staying the same is more than the pain of changing." (from my friend, Jo)


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