1halffull's Blog

The Surprises of Life…
April 4, 2010, 5:05 am
Filed under: Change, Dad, Friends, God, Happiness, Humor, Jesus, Kids, Legacy, Life, Love, Memories, Nostalgia, Parents, Travel

For the average person, there are very few really big events that take place in our lives.  You’re born – but you probably don’t remember that.  You learn to walk – don’t remember that either.  Your first day at school – maybe.  Your first visit from the tooth fairy – yep, pretty sure you remember that.

 The first date…the first kiss….the first ‘real’ boyfriend.  High school graduation then college.  Getting engaged then the big (or small) wedding day.  The birth of your first child, and every child after that.  The death of your mom, then your dad; your grandmas and grandpas if you were fortunate to know them at all.  There goes your favorite aunt and suddenly you’re so much older than you’d have thought you could get when you were 20.

 For me, most of that happened in the first 30 years.  It was a lot to pack in there.  They were all a big deal at the time….some remain a big deal in my heart, my head, even now.

 Someone once said that it’s the little things that sneak up and grab a hold of you.  They were right.

 Some of my ‘little things’ include, in random order….

 Going fishing with my dad and catching more fish than him.  He let me.  I loved the lake.  Still do.

 My friend deciding that I wouldn’t be able to deal with a club meeting when I got home after my dad’s death.  She put herself in my place and took care of it so I didn’t have to.  A little, but thoughtful thing.

 My dad poking his head into my room, handing me a $20 bill as he told me that he knew all I’d been doing around the house to help out.  Demonstrated appreciation that meant so much to me under the circumstances.

 Aunt Betty who invited me to visit her in the summers and allowed me to see myself as a valuable person like few others did.

 Learning that my friend Avis daily sang ‘I have decided to follow Jesus’ in the final weeks of her life.  I’d always hoped she would.

 Playing a game of ‘keep the car moving till the light turns green’ when taking kids home from church – it’s a fun game – you should try it.

 Having a mother-in-law who patiently listened over the years, didn’t butt in, and has spent hours on the phone with me, talking about anything and nothing.  If we were running the world, it would be a much better place.  Thanks, mom.

 Going to the beach with the whole clan; all the kids playing together; sunburns radiating.  Sea creatures scurrying out of the bucket of sand while one child screamed and the others all laughed.

 My sister-in-law and I in the ocean – without our contacts in – screaming at ‘jaws’ coming for us then laughing our faces off when we finally could tell they were just shadows.  Another time laughing ourselves silly so hard in the card section that a man ‘just had to come see why we were so hysterical’.  “There are two sides to every divorce” the outside of the card said.  “Yours and the s— head’s.” (not my words – but how we howled and promptly sent it to a sibling who may still have it today)!

 Two little faces pressed against the window waving and calling ‘bye mommy’ as I’d pull out of the driveway on my way to somewhere else.

 The surprise 40th birthday party my husband gave me where I was totally surprised.

 The kids so excited to sleep in the van the night before a vacation started.

 All the Christmas videos we made that could be Christmas any year except for the changes in sizes, hairdos, glasses and voices.

 Howling at the moon from the causeway with my daughter.

 Taking my son for his first tattoo.

 Oh, the list goes on and on and is my way of saying, let the little things grab on to you and you hold on tight to them.  In the end, they’re really the only things that matter.


Things that go bump in the night
August 25, 2009, 5:35 pm
Filed under: Boogey Man, God, Jesus, Storms

Remember when you were a kid? You’d lie in bed at night and, after all was quiet, hearboogeyman2 noises that you never heard during the day, especially if you lived in an older home. You might have let your mind run wild and think the Boogey Man was coming out from under the bed to get you! Or that the ghosts who lived in the closet were dancing on the ceiling.

If you were scared enough, you’d go flying into your parent’s room – sometimes much to their surprise – begging to get into bed with them and hide. Some of you were allowed into the family bed; others were escorted back to your own room where your parent showed you that there was nothing hiding under the bed or lurking in the closet. Well of course they didn’t see those things – they made sure parents never saw them!

Little did we know that this was just a precursor to the things we’d experience as adults where things don’t just go bump in the night but also go crash, bang, boom during the day!

When we become adults, often our bumps are much more hideous than any Boogey Man could ever be. There’s the cancer that just won’t go away or the accident that turns us into wheelchair bound vegetables where an athlete once stood. There’s job loss and spouse loss. There’s a child who commits murder and the aunt who was murdered and the moms who are left to deal with the aftermath.

As adults, where do we run when these trials come upon us?

Being a person of faith in God and His Son, Jesus, I run to them.

Oh, I’m no saint. I admit to being human just like everyone else. When the storm begins to rage, my stomach flips and my blood runs cold. My mind flies into a fit of ‘what ifs’, ‘I wonders’ and ‘how on earths’?

027mBut once the initial shock fades, the Lord comes in and reminds me of His past faithfulness in my life and I begin to think on those times and remind myself of the promises He’s made throughout the Bible. I know those to be true now and always and I find comfort there and strength to get through yet another storm.

I always go back to the place where it says ‘yea though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, because You are with me.’ That word ‘through’ is huge! It means I won’t be left alone in the middle of the storm but I will go through – indicating from one side to the other. YEA!

Knowing Jesus doesn’t mean I’ll get to skip the storms. The storms still come; they rage on. The difference is that I have every hope that they will end and that God will have walked me through, never failing, just as He’s promised.