Friday, February 28, 2014


Five years ago today, we made our vows to each other; to love and to cherish in health and sickness, good times and bad times.  Or however, our vows went.  I suppose if I was truly intent on keeping them, I ought to know what they said.

But wait, if my only intention in reading them was to know what they said so I could make sure I followed them, wouldn't that somewhat defeat the notion of love?  Love shouldn't keep a list and follow it, now should it?  Shouldn't love be wanting to do all of the above mentioned things and many others beside?

Now, I am glad that our vows didn't say anything about cleaning the house and cooking the meals with all love and joy and happiness, because then, sadly enough, I would have broken the vows, possible before the first month or two was out.

But here we are at 5 years and right now, I am enjoying the cooking part.  I even got up and made breakfast burritos this morning, in honor of it being our anniversary.  That's true love, isn't it?  The cleaning part?  We are moving in a couple months--I'm pretty sure we won't be buried under dust before then, so I think I will wait. 

Five years:  they have been some of my best years and also some of my toughest years.  I love my husband--he is patient and kind and patient and loving and patient and compassionate with me.  Who knew I had such an ability to pick a fight and pick on the nonsensical things long enough to get myself all stewed up and upset and crying over it?  Who knew that I would be the one to raise the issues in our marriage?  Me?  I'm as peace-loving as ever. Ha!!! WRONG!!!  My husband is the peacemaker--he will do what he needs to to live in peace.  Let's not ruffle the waters, let's live under the radar, etc. etc.  Hence the reason we have had such a good five years--because he put up with me and was patient with me as I worked to learn to live peaceably with him.  I can attest that the last years have been better than the first years.  I can say we never had a hard time, but I like to think I have become easier to live with. 

Now, I don't want to take all the blame here--Dave still cannot stand if I chew popcorn in the same room he is in and he is abstaining from popcorn.  But really, if that is all the worse of issues, he has, he is the best to live with!!!

We have had some fun times: camping trips, anniversary getaways, battles with winning Settlers, good chats, campfires, gardening together and on an on. 

There have also been some hard times.  Five years ago, I didn't expect to have said good bye to two precious little ones before our fifth anniversary.  I thought life would be more idyllic--there wouldn't be financial issues, there wouldn't be relational conflicts, and there certainly wouldn't be grief.

Would I change anything in the past five years?  Yes, there are decisions we would do differently if we had them to do over, but all in all, I have learned a lot and wouldn't want to change the difference the past five years has made in my life. 

Here's to another 5++++++ years!!!!!!!

Thursday, February 20, 2014


It seems whenever I post about Nicole, my computer at home freezes and won't let me back on my blog, so let's try a different post and see what happens.  I can't see that there is any connection there, but...

The big change right now:  the faithful secretary has officially quit.  Kerra, it's been a good 5 years together and I will miss you in the next 2.5 months that I am here.  Nobody else gets the jokes and knows the stories of our dear patients and their little quirks.  It's been good, but I wish you the best in your newest and most long-lasting venture.  God's richest blessings you and Stan.  Your little girl will always have a special place in my heart.

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

5 weeks

It's been 5 weeks since we laid Nicole Brooke to "rest" they call it.  What kind of terminology is that?  It's one of those euphemisms we use to make it sound nicer than it really is.  Because let's face it:  putting a body in a casket, closing and sealing the lid and putting it in a cold dark hole in the ground and covering it with dirt is not nice.  It doesn't feel restful at all--it feels downright cruel.

Even now, the memories come flooding back over me.  The tears and awful moment of putting Nicole in her coffin, kissing her sweet face one last time and then having to close that lid.  There was no beauty in that.  The beauty came in knowing that while we were putting her body to "rest", the real and alive part of Nicole was in heaven, wrapped in Jesus' embrace and having a good time.

Watching them put her body in the ground was not fun--in fact, I wasn't even sure I could watch that first shovelful of dirt being put on her grave.  It was like those horror movies,  too awful not to watch and see.  Her daddy helped put dirt on her coffin and he did it so gently, so full of love; her grandpa too.  I cannot imagine how hard that was to do and yet they did it because they loved her.  While that was happening, I like to think Nicole was up above looking down and watching her daddy and saying, "I love you, but don't cry for me, Daddy.  I'm so happy up here.  I'm with Jesus and my aunt Martha and my great-grandparents and all my little friends and life is so good up here."

That is the thing that makes this whole death and grieving process tolerable--she is with Jesus--she is happy--Life is good for her.  So while the tears come and the grief rolls, I will choose to rejoice with my little daughter in the grandeur of heaven.

Friday, February 7, 2014

The Dancing Master

The Dancing Master by Julie Klassen

This book was given to me by the Bethany House Publishers for the express purpose of writing a review.

This was a fun book to read for me right now.  This was set in a small town in England where dancing had been outlawed about 20 years ago. Lady Amelia had adopted her niece as her own daughter and while she loved her dearly, she had a hard time expressing that love, which made Julia, her daughter, feel very unloved and restricted in her freedom.

Lady Amelia's husband had not been in favor of taking in Julia and he showed no interest in her during her growing up years. I think this in turn caused Julia to seek any and all male attention.

When I write reviews, I like to think more about the themes expressed in the book rather than giving a small synopsis of what happened.  You can go read the book description on Amazon if you want that.

Forgiveness was a big theme to me in this book, though it really wasn't talked about much until the last couple of chapters, but once forgiveness was expressed, walls were broken down and relationships could be mended.

Another thing that was good for me to think about again is "Get the whole story and get both sides of the story." Due to a falsehood being believed for 20 years, a man was forced to leave home and a lady was forced to a miserable marriage and chose to become bitter when all along it was a lie.

This book was light reading, but very good reading.  Julie Klassen did a good job of weaving a very interesting story together while writing from various points of view and making it all make sense.

Big Trucks Getting the Job Done Together, Illustrated by Sergio De Giorgi

A dozer, a digger, a crane and a dump truck work together to get the job done. Written in rhyme, it reminds me a bit of the book "L...