Thursday, July 23, 2020

Got called "Kiddo" this morning!

Good humid morning!
Three musings (including a smile) this morning...

I've been walking in the mornings. Today as has been happening more often, my Fitbit wasn't working so I set out without my tracker. It's disappointing when I get my weekly stats and I know I've gone for that walk but it doesn't show up. I guess I'll have to break down and buy a new one!

My walks are my true down time. Sometimes I find myself counting randomly, so odd. Other times, I'm thinking about the dogs that bark as I walk past or the joy the squirrels seem to be having.

The dogs always make me think of years ago when there was a primary reader called "The Dog Next Door". At the time, I had a very aggressive dog living next door (different home) and it was often chained in the yard and barking. My life challenges were much different then and in a talk I gave at the time, I compared the dog next door to my faith and the Gospel. At the time, I didn't have a church home and found that the constant barking made me think of the fact that even when we aren't worshiping with others, the Spirit offers us daily reminders (barks at us) of our meaning and the strength we gain from the Gospel. Sometimes we need that barking to wake us up to our need to give attention to ourselves, to others and to Christ. It's so interesting to hear the barking dogs, from afar and from near their homes, as they speak to me when I enter their zone. Especially at this time of isolation from large gatherings. What a great reminder this has been to me (this analogy problems doesn't make sense to some) since I haven't been to a service since the first week in March! Who would think that a barking dog was a reminder of Christ and the strength we gain from him. Maybe I should be paying more attention to the actual dog or maybe I should keep letting my mind go to spiritual thoughts.

Squirrels are often out and about on my walks. They play with one another, run up trees and poles, stop and pose as if I won't see them. It causes me to think of how squirrels have recently become associated with distractedness or inability to focus. Is this the case or do squirrels have a special capacity to enjoy their surroundings, appreciating the little things. Hmmm...

And finally, I had the funniest thing happen this morning! I stepped out to cross the street and a truck slowed to turn. I realized the driver's window was down so said I was sorry for stepping out as he was turning. He said, "No problem, Kiddo, enjoy your walk." What a great smile this brought!!! Who calls a 60ish year old women with graying hair (no coloring due to COVID), Kiddo. What a precious example of a simple kindness that impacted my day when he was likely just on his way to work and calls everyone Kiddo. :)

Wednesday, July 8, 2020

Created for More - Day 5 - Slow Down

If you're reading or have read Created for More, you'll know that Day 5 isn't "Slow Down", it's be curious. So why "Slow Down"?

Work is hectic, COVID 19 is ramping back up, President Trump makes major (ill-advised!) announcement about schools...

Day 2 was Be Limited. I read, pondered, and of course tried to think of an application or literal example. Humble was easy! I'm now seeing how focused these suggestions are for artists and I don't consider myself one although I am always inspired by other's art. I recognize beauty and creativity and celebrate interests and values.

But there's a little black and white in my grayness and I couldn't quite wrap my head around Be Limited.

Be A Dancer made me smile. What a lovely thought to be a dancer with God. I always say I "play" in my yard rather than "work". Now I can say I'm dancing with God as I follow his lead! And oh how I've always wanted to "Be a dancer" but never developed the skills. My sister used to say she went to "dance recitals" while I went to "brain banquets". Now I can say I'm a dancer!!!

Be Intentional - wow, is that an attribute I've followed (intentionally) for many years. A national organization I belong to has championed intentionality in the classroom, especially when working with young children. I talk about it in class and have tried to apply it in my daily practices.

So now it's almost 4 p.m. on day 5 and I haven't read the entry yet. For heaven's sake, I didn't read Day 4 until almost 9 last night! Today as I started my morning walk, I'm appreciating the squirrels, rabbits and sunshine. I'm pondering the first 4 days and my frustration over Day 2 when suddenly I'm struck by the phrase - Slow Down!

What?!? But this is supposed to be a daily devotion. I agreed to "follow the rules". I don't want to fail myself and others! I even shared the "Be a dancer" thought with someone at work yesterday when they commented that "God is smiling on you" and then found Be Intentional which is already a practice.

But SLOW DOWN is my today. My representation is a video of a performance of the song, Slow Down that I was able to experience at a concert last summer. Yes, I was part of the audience that stood after this performance. If you don't know the vocalist Sissel, you should search for her!

Maybe my "day" measure doesn't have to be 24 hours?

Saturday, July 4, 2020

Created for More - Day 1 - Be Humble

And so it begins...

So much has happened since the fpp yet I'll skip most and begin with this project :)

My dear friend, Rachel, called in June to ask if I'd be interested in participating in this Artist in my Residence experience. How could we have ever planned for the COVID-19 door opening of opportunities?!

A little back story or catch up since 2014... (Bear with me as this is relevant to "be humble")...

2014 and 15 went along swimmingly (intentional fish reference :). Daily frustrations and challenges but little to share. Many opportunities for growth in my work life while doing contract work with state agencies. I worked on myself and lost over 100 pounds by the end of 15. It started with increasing water intake and I'm back to a gallon a day after a brief lapse.

2016 - Notified in late January that I was being cut in 90 days. Had the opportunity to dig in and look at myself and what/who I am. Ended this job, unemployment, part time job in an entry level position for summer, offer to work at a state agency in a significant role. While I'd been working among many who take themselves very seriously for years, this role was a whole new level.

2017 - Word of the year is "humility". Due to the daily interactions, I try to focus on being humble. Not self-deprecating (as mentioned in today's devotion) but rather confident and kind among others who were not. Might I mention that I was still quite angry from the past year's growth opportunity and struggling with my place in this environment. They didn't quite know how to take me.

I was uncomfortable and challenged daily. I prayed to have a different opportunity and one was given to me in June of 17. Of course, this new job put me in a nest of self important people giving me the opportunity to continue my practice of being humble.

2018 - Kept the word "humility" for another year... kept practicing - can you really achieve this? Yes!

2019 - Word was "undaunted". Pulled it from a hymn that begins "Oh how lovely was the morning" as I was texting my weekly note to a dear friend that lives on the other side of the U.S. The word comes with the phrase "but undaunted, still he trusted in his Heavenly Father's care." I carry that trust and gained strength from having the word on my hallway board, my office board and my bracelet given to me by another dear friend.

2020 - Word is "persist" and Rachel gave me a second "wonder". Then COVID-19 occurred. A new work/life balance was needed. I changed up a few things and cleaned up a few. Started walking indoors and now am daily enjoying the beauty of the outdoors.

Yesterday on my walk I was wondering when I'd get my book from Rachel. I was nearing home and had a funny interaction that brought the word humility to mind. I then had a "Zoom" with the Sister missionaries. They shared the hymn, Scatter Sunshine, and challenged me to identify a Christlike attribute that I would consider working on for the coming week. You guessed it - Humility!

I found my book in the mailbox about 6 after enjoying an afternoon in the air conditioning watching "Hamilton"... what a fabulous show! I glanced at the materials and wasn't completely surprised that the first day was "Be Humble".

Got up this morning, read the entry, wrote a note to my pen pal, walked it to the mailbox. It was the entry that made me decide to revive this blog. I won't promise to write every day, but am glad for the opportunity to share these thoughts. Had it not been for the comments in "be humble" about taking risks, I know I wouldn't have shared publicly.

The challenge was interesting and I'm going to draw on something yesterday for mine. I made a delicious spaghetti in the crock pot with spaghetti squash rather than pasta. Due to the slow cook, the squash was more mush than pasta-like. It was delicious and I will share a portion or two with my parents today. Epic fail but ...

I'm also posting a pic or two from my yard on Instagram @kkcoffeymaker True confession - my poor old computer isn't happy with all I've been asking it to do lately so IG has become my toe-dip into social media. Still not on Facebook.

These pics are this morning's examples of "humble" in my yard.

And the journey begins...
Phillipians 4:13 and Alma 26:12

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

My yard today:)

Greetings and Merry Christmas!

I took some pictures of the yard on Monday. It was mid-40's. A great yard day!

The fpp is put away for the year. We'll see how it winters in the shed??

I'm a little worried about my hydrangea. It never bloomed this year and then got frosted with buds. The boxwood is doing great after being cut back to the stump.

My new fuchsia cone flowers bloomed twice and the plant looks healthy. I found a possible gloriosa daisy among the mint in the corner. 

Lost a beautiful, mature, volunteer butterfly bush this year (just at the middle of the second panel from the left). My neighbor, Holly, found a healthy sprout on the sidewalk side of the fence. I'm going to try to transplant it in the Spring.

I wanted to also comment about this area and the one above. I started seeing an odd white powder developing on the leaves and stems of the cone flower and thought it was from the fpp. I've since seen the cats urinating along the fence line. I'm guessing it's the cats, not the fpp.

I think next year will be a good year for this corner. (Above and below picture) I made a few perennial additions this year.

Yes, I have Christmas lights up and put some old ornaments in the planter. I'll add a night picture when I get one. It's been cold and rainy the last two days.

No, the Santa on my porch doesn't have a nose. My reasoning is that from the street it looks fine! LOL!

The front door

Saturday, September 27, 2014

8-16-14 Pulled seeds and applied FPP to some plants

It's sunny and 79! My house is still open-window. It was high forties last night :)

I used the FPP on my porch containers and the 2014 perennials.

I just had to take a picture of the glad in the zinnias and the sunflowers!

September 27, 2014 Beautiful day

It's a beautiful day. We've had some cool nights, but it's back to no rain, 80 in the afternoon, 50 at night. There are fleas in the yard (not unusual). I'm going to do the pills, drops, bombs, etc. in the house. The boys (cats) won't be happy.

Attending a wedding this afternoon.

Sister and sister-in-law are doing well.

Stoney is happy on the porch:)

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

9/4 - 9/17 Finally fall

Can you believe it's been almost a month since my last post!

I'm still applying the FPP about once or twice a week. My coneflowers are tired. I gave them a good haircut and still have a few for bouquets. My sunflowers are done. Zinnias are colorful!

I've been collecting a lot of seeds. Let me know if you want some. I have a lot of sunflowers, cleome, and zinnias. I also have a few cosmos and lots of purple coneflowers.

Here are some pics from 9/4.

Crusty (left) and Stoney (right) seem pretty comfy :)


Prayers for my sister and sister-in-law 

The red zinnia caught my eye, so I had to take pictures :)

Had the opportunity to host friends from beyond Columbus for a yard tour.

Took it off my plate AND forgot to tell Shawn.

Added some fall flowers.