Saturday, December 21, 2013

Finding Peace During the Holidays

With the holidays upon us stress may be also. Why does the Christmas season tend to be piggibacked by anxiety and to do lists that will never get done?

Every year I am determined to just "enjoy" the holiday season. Yet, it seems every year something comes up that makes the execution of that plan almost impossible.

I sat at the dinner table this evening with my arms aching and my eyes heavy with the stresses of the day.  I began to pray and purpose to let my heart, mind, and spirit enter that heavenly realm.

It is a realm here on earth that God joins us in that can bring a peace, love, hope, and joy that we cannot get from anyone, from anywhere, or by doing any thing.  It is not an escape, it is just a place of peace that passes all understanding. 

Once that peace entered my heart, I rejoined the wonderful blessings around me with a new mind and a thankfulness for all of God's goodness.


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Monday, December 16, 2013

New Book For Sale That I Am In!



Hey friends!

I want to share with you this new book that is coming out about traveling women, which includes me!

I submitted two stories and my daughter Hanna did also.

They are for sale as an e book and later in print.

To read great stories from a bunch of wild women, buy it today.  

Click through my ad above and I will make a commission!

It is on pre-sale right now at a discounted price. Buy now for a Christmas present!

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Money Men Mayhem What is the answer?

Sometimes a woman feels alone and scared


Just when things seem hard, they just get harder!

When did money make my world go round?  

The bible says we cannot serve two masters, that we cannot serve both God and mammon.

We need money to live - sometimes it seems our entire life is spent trying to earn it just to spend it.

Money and family are the two things that have been the hardest on our marriage.

When Shae was sick it seemed easier for me because I always had an excuse for our marriage problems - his pain.  Now that he is well I have nothing to blame it on but us.

We are our problem.

Jesus is the answer.

Not money.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

I Laughed So Hard I Cried

I love to laugh

as much as possible

except sometimes I laugh so hard

it makes my lungs tighten up 

and I have an asthma type attack

the last one went on for an hour and a half

if you want to watch something that is

so funny it put me in a coughing fit.....

watch this - 

but before you do...go pee and get a glass of water

if you are like me...grab your inhaler!


Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Plans Fall With the Leaves on the Trees

What rules and laws do I have in my life?

Did I put them there for a good reason or are they there and instead make life unnecessarily harder?

Is a certain goal worth pursuing or is it one I might consider changing or giving up?

So often I make plans or set deadlines that aren't necessary and put extra stress on my life.  There are things that need to get done and there are deadlines to be met, but how many of them are truly required and how many do I set for myself that cause more stress and anxiety?


I purpose to evaluate my plans. 

Prioritize.

Simplify.

We only have today once, what shall I do with it?

What does God want me to do with it?





Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Busyness Shmisyness

I like to make up my own words.  

I also use grammar to my advantage and do whatever I please with it.  

When my husband and daughter saw the title for this post they both looked at me with that eye-brow down, questioning and yet knowing look on their faces.

Sometimes they think I am off my rocker and I must admit there are many people who agree with that diagnosis – you know – the off-your-rocker disease.

Yet, most of the time people think I have jumped on the band-wagon for a better life, one not full of strife, sadness, busyness, and wastefulness.

I am known for taking each day as a gift and using it wisely.

How time flies.  Thankfully it is not as long as a fly’s.
 (There’s I go again, helping along the “Nuts” diagnosis.)

I watch people and I wonder what motivates them.  When we are on our death bed will we feel that the life we lived was worthwhile?  What did we spend our time on?  What did we accomplish – no matter how small it may seem?

Maybe it is the small things we accomplish that are the most important!

There are so many things that have no eternal value.  
With eternity in mind – we should plan our 
seconds
minutes 
hours 
days
weeks 
months
years
and life.


Our time here on earth may be training for – forever.  
While we may be here for a time we will be there forever.

While here today – there someday.

Saturday, August 24, 2013

Running on Empty

Running on empty is terrible for a motor.  I had been told to never let my gas tank get below 1/8th a tank. Supposedly there can be junk that settles in the bottom of the tank and it can enter the fuel lines.  Or, maybe it is because if I let it get too low then I might run out.  Was it because it is bad for a diesel motor to run out of gas and it causes something to dry out? I just can't remember!

I don't know.
I don't care.

I just obey and never run out of gas, then if any of it is true I won't ruin the motor or be stuck on the side of the road.


So often we do this to ourselves or other times our circumstances change and cause a huge leak in our emotional, physical, and spiritual gas tank.
  • we work hard for so long with no break
  • sick kids for days and even weeks
  • family problems that don't seem to resolve
  • financial woes that plague our every waking moment
  • an injured spouse
  • an elderly parent needs more help
  • drama in our family or work place or both
It may be a huge leak or maybe a small, dripping one. If it isn't a leak then we are just plain ol' pushing ourselves to the limit, our gauge is moving to E at a rapid pace.  Either way we feel ourselves getting close to empty. 


Most the time my husband or son fill up my gas tank. Usually, I just jump in our van or truck and head out down the road. There are many times, if not most, that I don't even look at the gas gauge.  

I just trust they fill it for me.

Whose job is it to fill us back up?  
  • Are we responsible to refresh ourselves physically, spiritually, and mentally?
  • Should our loved ones help us get out of the dumps and fill us up?
  • TV?
  • A good book?
  • Friends?
  • Food?
  • Alcohol?
  • Drugs?
  • Sex?

Some of these people and things can put some of the gas back in us when we are running low while others on the list may destroy us and push us below empty and even burn up our motor. 

Ultimately Jesus is the only one that can fill us up.  When we are running on low we need to turn to God for help.

Not only will He fill us up with living water He will fill up a spare tank so we have some to give to others.  He is there with us in the valleys and on the mountain tops.  He will fill us with His Love, His Provision, His Comfort, His Desires, His Strength, and so much more.

Call on Him to fill you up.

He has living water for us.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Seasons of Change


Seasons.
Spring
Summer
Fall
Winter

Can there be other seasons of our life?
Love
Loss
Joy
Sadness
Quiet
Hard work
Rest
Young
Old
Foolish
Wise

I was in one season and then another.
 Now, I enter a completely new time of my life one of

Illness, Hope, Sadness, Giving, Losing, and Love.


What season are you in?
Seasons Change in our Lives

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Wild Spring Weather





I think life is a wild and crazy adventure and as we walk through each day this is revealed in many ways.  

Take the snow storms in May!  It is shocking to see the photos on facebook of my hometown being covered in this beautiful white blanket.  

Even with all of its beauty there is destruction to be had.  How is my grandmother?  Has her power gone out and she is cold tonight?  What about all of the crops planted - food to feed a family?

As with all things there is the up side and the down side.  I guess it depends on which side of the slope you are on!

Yet, whether we are on the up or down side does not ultimately matter.  What matters is whether we are on God's side or against Him.  Because, no matter what happens each day on this grand adventure we all life - God is there - rock steady - unchanging.

If there are storms - God is there.

If there is sun - God is there.

If there is happiness - God is there.

If there is mourning - God is there.

If there is peace - God is there.

If there is love - God is there. 
 But it is only a God king of love, one that we cannot even fathom.

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

Overwhelmed and Overflowing

The Virgin River can overflow its banks with a small amount of rain or snow melt.

No, I am not wore out, although the seven day drive from Utah to Missouri was not easy.

I am overwhelmed. 

I am so overwhelmed with emotion that I can hardly stand it.  

There is so much in me that I cannot contain it. 

It is like a flash flood at Zion National Park.  
The river flows daily but there are times when, after a snow melt or a rain storm, the Virgin River swells and overflows its banks.

It feels great to be overwhelmed with awesome emotions. 
Joy unspeakable.  
Love uncontainable.  
Peace that passes all understanding.  
Kindness that makes the heart smile.
Goodness to restore hope.
Virgin River, Zion National Park, in the canyon

Virgin River, Zion National Park, in the canyon

Virgin River, Zion National Park, Utah

The Virgin River from a view point found by UTV on the south side of the river in Virgin, Utah

The Virgin River south of Virgin, Utah

Virgin River, Zion National Park, on a cold and snowy day.

Virgin River, Zion National Park, Utah

Virgin River on the Pa' rus Trail in Zion National Park, Utah

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Grand Canyon is Grand


The Grand Canyon is extremely large, 18 miles wide and one mile deep in some parts.  Yet, as I looked at it this week it seemed so small

- compared to my God -







Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Disappearing as I Appear Everywhere!

I have worked hard on our website, blogs, and movies - but sometimes I need a break.

Sometimes I want to hide out and disappear.

So, where have I been?

Utah, Arizona, New Mexico, and Texas!

What a wild four days.  From glorious Zion National Park, Lee's Ferry, Grand Canyon National Park, the mountains near Flagstaff with the stunning aspens and ponderosa pines, the vast deserts of northern Arizona, New Mexico formations and mountains, as well as the dust storms of the panhandle of Texas.

The Painted Desert National Park was small compared to the formations we climbed in Virgin.

Are we getting spoiled?

My emotions have been up and down since we left, just as our views have changed dramatically.

My last four days:

Petrified National Forest

Painted Desert National Park, Arizona

Petrified Forest National Park

Our ride in the Petrified Forest National Park, Arizona

Lee's Ferry, Arizona

Grand Canyon National Park

Marble Canyon

River on Kolob Terrace Road in Virgin, Utah

Saturday, March 23, 2013

Overflow

Blue, white, brown, and green - the variety of sights reflect my heart.
There are certain things in life that make me overflow with emotion.  The last seven weeks have been amazing.  I don't even know what I can say to express the awesome and unique experiences I have had.  From excitement to joy to perseverance to exhaustion, I have felt the range of emotions and adventures over the last months.  I leave Utah with such love, joy, and fond memories.  I do not want to go yet, I know we must leave to arrive at the next place.

Tonight, my husband and I sat in the hot tub for way too long.  We met the nicest man there.  It is strange sometimes where we meet people but really, the people of this country make it who it is.  I am so thankful for who we have met the last year.  I love traveling for this reason, as well as others.

A lady camped near us gave us so many beautiful clothes and so many other items I cannot even list them all.  The thankfulness in my heart just boils over.  God is so good.

I feel like I am moving on to the next place so full of so much.  There is some things in me that need to be dealt with while there are other things inside that are so happy that I don't know if I can contain it.

There is something on my horizon, something good coming....

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Roller Coaster of a Day


Some days just seem so hard while others bring joy unspeakable.  Today was a day that brought a wide range of emotions.  

We tried to do hike at Zion National Park, but the kids seemed determined to fuss and cry their way through the beautiful canyon.

I found out we have to leave Utah much earlier than planned which is sad, but my son got the job he wanted with the National Forest which is great!

We are going back to a campground we love but we are leaving a place that I have grown to love.

My husband and I had a blast climbing the red rock at the Red Bull Mountain Bike track for exercise so I feel exhausted yet invigorated.

I cried once over leaving and got dizzy once after climbing to the top of a huge cliff.

Me sitting at the top of one of the mesas we climb to get
in shape.

Through all the ups and downs, there is a steadiness inside.  There is something that has to keep us together so we are not on a roller coaster of emotions that is difficult to stay on.  Sometimes we bring others on board our emotional roller coaster and they get nauseous from all the ups and downs, turns and flips.

I seek that steadiness.  I desire that smooth road while everything else around me is going crazy.

Jesus is that rock.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Exposed by Kids

Exposure. 
Exposed.
Disclosed.
Discovered.
Exhibited.
For Show.
Unconcealed.
Unhidden.
Unprotected.
Unveiled.
Visible.

That is the plight of a mom.  With a seemingly endless supply of children, it has been years since I have been able to wear skirts without fear of exposure.  For twenty years I have had little ones running around yanking on my skirts, flipping them up, or turning them into knots to expose my tooshy.  Thankfully I have underwear on, but still!  It can get quite embarrassing when I am talking with someone and a young child comes up behind me and pulls my skirt up.

Maybe it is the shirt.  My little ones seem to think that pulling the neck line of my shirt is fine even if it shows way too much!  

I am finally beginning to wear jewelry again.  Necklaces, earring, and large rings have been almost non-existent.  With sweet little hands always grabbing at anything shiny, I had to put them away.  Now, I am starting to adorn myself, minimally, and enjoying it.

I've never felt I needed jewelry.  I tell my girls that my beauty comes from my smile, my love, and my caring nature.  I don't need makeup, fancy clothes, or jewelry to be beautiful.  My beauty comes from within.

But, now that my little ones are getting older, I am enjoying the small accessories that will bring a little sparkle to my shine.
Weeping Rock, Zion National Park, Utah
sparkles just like a woman who shines from within

Love Story - he drives me crazy

Love that goes so deep cannot be destroyed.

That does not mean, however, that he doesn't drive me crazy sometimes!

Our love would be dull without some spice.  He loved me for many reasons and one was my sassiness.

I loved him for many reasons, one being his sense of humor.

He said in our vows, "I will always try to make you laugh."

He has kept that promise and so much more.  

There have been hard times and struggles in our marriage, but I am thankful we have held on tight.

We take a leap of faith every day.  Sometimes we land on our feet and other times we land on our butts.

So, we get back up and keep on loving each other, day after day.



Love as solid as this rock.

Angel's Landing, Zion National Park, Utah




Thursday, March 7, 2013

Life is Good Climbing the Red Rock in Utah

When life is good, life is good.

I finally feel great after health issues for about six months.  My husband and I spent a day in the red rock near Zion National Park, at the Red Bull Mountain Biking Track.

We hiked and exercised together in the beautiful terrain.  It felt great to get out and workout hard.  My thighs burned.

I climbed in the campground hot tub with my daughter to sooth those sore muscles, then went to a wine tasting party at the lodge.

What an awesome life.




Friday, March 1, 2013

Reflection

Sevier River in Marysvale, Utah

Reflections can be beautiful. What is up above in shown in almost perfect detail in the subject below. Although there might be some distortion, the beauty is not lost.  

Whether the landscape be mountains, trees, flowers, or light - the image of what is above can be seen with some clarity to those looking upon it. 

 If one were to only look at the mirror image they should be able to see what is causing it, the true source of what they are seeing before them.


Middle Emerald Pool on the Emerald Pools hike in Zion National Park, Utah
What do you reflect?

Those who have ears let them hear.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013

Bad Memories of Taking Care of my Sick Husband

Life can be as dry, harsh, and beautiful all at the same time
just like Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah
I woke up to a sick husband and son.  Shae has been struggling with a headache for many days now.  Sadly, it made it to the dreaded migraine stage and there he was in bed all day.  Now, to make it even more difficult, our youngest child, Tytus, woke up with a fever.  I held him in my arms so he would sleep well until finally he woke up feeling a little better and ready to eat.

Sitting there, trying to not move much so I wouldn't wake up Shae reminded me of the days when he suffered so severely. I remember lying still all night so he would not wake up and all the nights I slept on the couch or recliner with a child so we wouldn't disturb daddy at night.

Shae wanted me to rub his head and neck numerous times today and, I have to admit, I had quite a bad attitude about it.  You see, this weekend he and I had a few rough moments in our marriage.  He apologized and I forgave him, yet I still wasn't over the hurt.  I learned years ago that we may forgive but sometimes the hurt remains.  

I layed in bed next to him, thinking about the past.  Sometimes it can be bad to allow ourselves to think back to hard times.  I remembered how he wasn't there to help me when I was pregnant or when my dad died suddenly.  He was always sick.  I thought about some of the times I needed a back rub when I was pregnant or just needed him to brush the kids teeth while I held the baby - and he couldn't or didn't.

I don't want any bitterness in my heart.  I love my husband dearly and I know that he did not want the pain.  But, that doesn't change the fact that I felt abandoned, alone, and lost at times.

God was always there for me, but I needed my husband.

Remembering the hard times can also be good.  It caused me to check my heart and make sure there was no unforgiveness or bitterness there.  Then, I thought of how thankful I am he doesn't have severe pain anymore.  Those days of complete pain are over.  Now, we just have to deal with some of his other health issues that show up every now and then.

I prayed for compassion today.  
I prayed for mercy today.  
With God's help I can overcome everything and anything.

Monday, February 25, 2013

Tick Tock the Financial Clock

Hickory 
Dickory
Dock

The government ran up the clock.

The clock struck one.

And down it fell.

Hickory 
Dickory 
Dock.

I can only hope that things will work out on Friday.
Truth and opinions seem to be lacking and plentiful.

Time will tell.


There seem to be experts on all 100 sides. (OK, slight exaggeration)   Who do we believe?  Does it matter what we believe?  There is a way to make a difference.  Research, keep up to date on current events, and call your Congressman and Senators are just a few things we can do.

If that seems to daunting of a task, get on your knees and pray.  Actually, that is the first thing we should do. With so much misinformation out there we can trust God to guide and lead 

- if we humble ourselves and seek His face.  
Pray.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Pushing Past Our Limits

Hiking the Watchman Tower Trail in Zion National Park
was extremely challenging with six kids and my husband not with us.
As a woman and mother I have my 
limits, 
boundaries, 
and lines 
that should not be crossed.  

I am patient but there is a point at which 
I lose it, 
blow my top, 
and want to scream.

Most days I keep it under control 
while others I barely make it until 10 am.

Some people admire me
while others think I am nuts.

I think I fall in the middle.

I fail.
I flounder.
I lose it.

Deep breathing doesn't always work.
Prayer always does.
Thankfulness helps me over come.

I take a moment alone and pray.

It was a lot of fun hiking the Watchman Tower Trail at
Zion National Park with 6 kids.
They did great.
The sooner I take that moment the better -
for every one.

Every woman fails.
Every mother fails.
Every wife fails.

The point is to try to not fail where it matters most.

Let's keep our failures away from our loved ones
and keep them private.





Sometimes I feel like my sin is like puking all over the ones I love.

Bad attitude.
Selfishness.
No patience.
Rude.

I have to push past.  Pray, rest my mind.
Push past my limitations and rely on God's abilities.
Taking one of our many breaks while hiking!
Watchman Trail in Zion National Park, Utah

He can help me through every problem and every situation.