Posted in friends, grace, happiness, Life, self care, strength

Blank Pages

The blank page taunts me. The cursor on the page blinks incessantly as I try to reach deep inside and pull out words to write.

Sometimes the words pour out. Other times not so much. Those are the times I stare at a blank page and feel like I have nothing to say.

I actually have a lot to say. However, some of what I have to say is not ready to share in such a public forum. It’s a long, painful story with no end in sight. So for now that page will stay blank.

What I can write about today is having grace; the exercise of love, kindness, mercy, favor disposition to benefit or serve another.

Each of us possess the ability to have grace. Unfortunately, not everyone practices it and many show it by posting on social media.

Everyday I come across a post, a tweet or Instagram story by or about unkind people. Racism, homophobia and just downright meanness are common themes in my newsfeeds and in the media. It’s very disheartening.

Despite the negativity and unkindness, I still believe the world has more people who love, are kind and willing to help others than not.

These are the people I want to (and do) surround myself with. The people I’m drawn to. The ones who lift me up, who inspire, who challenge me in a kind and loving way.

We can choose to disagree on a topic or belief and still remain in grace doing so. I will calmly listen to you with an open mind. In doing so we may discover things on which we can agree. Wouldn’t that be great?!

I choose and try everyday to stand in grace with everyone I know and meet. Myself included.

Diane

Posted in Life

Insta What

Grocery shopping…ugh! Whenever I walk into the store I become confused and overwhelmed. God forbid I don’t have a list with me. Lists keep me sane in a hectic paced environment like the grocery store.

My local grocer, Publix, has an app, which I have on my phone to browse the weekly sales. It’s a big help, but still requires me to drag my behind to the store…or so I thought.

One day while using the app I saw a place for grocery delivery. Curious and a tad giddy, I clicked the link, which took me to another app called Instacart. I discovered to my great delight that I could shop from my phone. A personal shopper would do all the heavy lifting and deliver the haul straight to my home for a modest fee plus tip!!

I decided to give it a whirl, so I logged on and away shopping I went. I had the highest of hopes and I wasn’t disappointed.

Within two hours after checkout, a lady arrived lugging my groceries with her. She wouldn’t even let me help her. The bags were carefully placed on my kitchen counters then away the shopping angel went.

Three uses of Instacart later I no longer shudder when I think of grocery shopping. I do visit the store, but I’m much more relaxed just knowing I don’t have to if I don’t want to.

Diane

Posted in family, Life

A Dozen Saves

On Sunday morning while a lot of families were attending church, I was at the bowling alley with my husband and son. “Are you sure you want to go on a Sunday with all the other heathens?” my husband asked jokingly.

Speaking of church…when I was around 12 years old, for one summer, I joined my aunt, uncle and cousins at a church in our hometown.

Sunday mornings my dad played his gospel records and sang along. When I asked why he didn’t go to church he would say “You don’t have to go to church to go to heaven.” I believed him yet I chose church on Sundays.

The church I attended had a very fire and brimstone preaching style, which scared the daylights out of me. The preacher would get so worked up during his sermon his face turned as red and wet as a vine ripened tomato sweating in the Georgia heat.

What really frightened me though came at the end of service. After we were told for 90 minutes we were headed straight to hell in a hand basket, the sermon would end in prayer and the saving of souls would begin.

The congregation was asked to raise their hand if they were sinners and wanted to accept Jesus Christ as our savior. The preacher asked these questions for what seemed like hours.

Being a frightened kid, I would sheepishly raise my hand hoping the yelling would stop. To my surprise, after the congregation was asked a few more times the yelling did, indeed, stop.

I felt like the clergy had been waiting for my hand to go up. He must have known I was the biggest sinner of all. At least that’s what my child’s mind believed.

Those of us who raised our hands were called to the front of the church to be counseled by elders and the preacher would come by and ask each of us to be saved by accepting Christ.

Several deacons would stand by the doors so no one could leave until all us sinners had been adequately counseled and saved.

Every Sunday that summer I would raise my hand and get saved. It must have been a dozen times!

The experience of this particular church left a bitter taste in my mouth. It turned me off to church completely until I was grown. I preferred to stay home with my dad listening to his gospel music.

It’s interesting how an experience from childhood can stay with you well into adulthood. This is a memory that I can’t forget.

Though I’ve been out of the church for a number of years, I would like to find a church home where I feel safe, supported and uplifted. In the meantime, I will continue to pray and thank God everyday for my life and everything in it.

Diane

Posted in friends, Life, self care

Make Me Laugh

A few days ago, I was speaking with a friend who was going through a rough time. She cried a bit as we talked then she asked me to make her laugh.

“I bought a new pair of running shoes,” I said to which she responded with lots of laughter. She knows my lack of love for exercise and I knew she would laugh at the thought of me running.

My new running shoes are due to my friend Stephanie who is on the move, quite literally (walking, running, swimming, yoga), and is encouraging others to do the same.

There was a time when I walked and ran every day around a gorgeous lake. Once we moved from the lake I stopped walking as the view wasn’t the same and if you miss one day you’re almost destined to miss two then three, etc. At least that’s how it went for me.

Since Stephanie started moving and posts her daily progress and inspiring quotes on Facebook, my feet have started itching to move too. Hence the new shoes.

As I write this I’m waiting on the shoe’s delivery, which is expected any day. When they do arrive, my plan is to start walking. My husband agreed to walk with me.

The shoes may sit in the box a few days while I get my mindset right off my lazy butt. I know this about myself and own it. However, my intention is to start walking again and even running once I build up my strength.

I have Stephanie to thank for encouraging me to get out and move and new shoes for giving me something to make my friend laugh.

Diane

P.S. – My shoes arrived. They sat in the box after a “try-on” for two days. Stephanie came by Wednesday to take me walking. We walked a mile! Yay, me!!

Posted in Life

Cotton Fields and Tee Time

When I was a growing up, I was blessed to have two wonderful grannies. Each unique in their own way.

My paternal granny was born and raised in Georgia. She married my granddaddy when she was very young and he was much older.

If I asked about her being so young when she married, she would say she was taken from one cottonfield and put in another. I would laugh, but I’ve come to realize Granny led a hard life though she always seemed happy and had the sweetest disposition.

Granny was a petite lady with sun-kissed skin and the most beautiful white hair, which she loved to have brushed. I would sit with her in front of me brushing and playing with her hair for what seemed like hours. For those moments of time, all her cares seemed far away. It’s one of my fondest memories.

She always smelled like Jergens lotion with its sweet cherry scent. She kept a bottle on a side table in her living room. I loved the smell and would squirt a bit in my hands whenever I visited. To this day, the smell of original Jergens takes me back to my childhood.

One of the funniest memories is of her little black Chihuahua looking dog named Fifi. She loved that pup.

Fifi had a very special talent. She played golf!

Someone, perhaps granny, got Fifi a child’s oversized plastic golf club and golf ball. Fifi would run around which ever course she happened to be playing (indoor or out) dragging the club in her mouth. It was bigger than her.

If the golf ball happened to be in the vicinity, the big club would hit it by accident and granny would laugh and say “See, she plays golf!” I would laugh at Fifi’s golf skills and because it tickled granny to watch her play.

My granny passed away when I was a teenager. Though she may be gone from this earth, the memories of and my love for her live on in my heart. As do my memories of Fifi the golf playing dog.

Diane