Thursday, December 21, 2006

The Meaning of Life....

My mind is whirring right now, so might be kind of rambly. :o)

I started to type something funny, like "Before you get excited and think I have found the meaning of life...." But haven't I found the meaning of life? If I have a relationship with Jesus, I have. So why do I let other stuff get me down and wondering about life and its purpose?

This past Saturday Doug and I went to OKC to attend the funeral of the 32 year old son of a friend of mine. It was really sad. The service was nice and I know Eric had a relationship with God, but it was still sad. Sad to think about his 3 year old growing up without her daddy; sad to think of his wife losing the one she loves most; thinking about my friend losing her firstborn child. Yet even though he was so young, his life was SO full!

Afterward, I saw many friends that I used to work with in OKC. The most asked question was: "So...what do you do with yourself now that you're not working?" This is not one of my favorite questions. Although I always feel like I keep busy, I could not tell you much about what keeps me busy.

I was blessed to be able to stop working almost 3 years ago. WOW! It doesn't really seem like it's been that long! I have to say I LOVE not working! I love just being able to do whatever, whenever. I have enjoyed being in a women's Bible study, helping occasionally in the food pantry at church, helping my friends with babysitting, helping with Workshop....

So today, I had lunch with a friend. I have been thinking about what makes my life matter. What is important to me and am I doing something about it? It's popping up everywhere: in conversation, in magazines and blogs that I have been reading....and then there was that question: "so what do you do with yourself now that you're not working?"

I want my life to make a difference. I want it to make a difference in Doug's life. I want it to make a difference in B's life. I want it to make a difference in my friends and acquaintances. I want people to see a difference in me.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

My husband mentioned to me last night that I hadn't blogged in a while. I seem to often need a nudge in this area of blogging. :o)

I've been thinking alot already about New Year's resolutions. My number one resolution that I am working on already is to not think so negatively about myself. It's not going to be easy because I have had almost 43 years of practice!

I suppose many might argue this next point, but I have got the absolute best husband in the whole world! He is SO patient and kind and generous and loving. I learn so much from him! He has blessed my life in ways that I didn't even know needed blessing! :o) I am thankful for him every day, but today, I wanted you to know.

Monday, December 04, 2006

OK...Seems I have been tagged by a "friend" to list six weird things about me. So I know I'm weird, but I was hoping no one else had noticed. :o)

So here we go:

1) When I fold towels, towels of the same color may not be stacked together.
2) I love salsa, ketchup, pizza sauce, etc....everything tomato-y, but NOT tomatoes.
3) Actually, I have many food issues. Eggs: I will only eat them scrambled HARD and can barely stand to be sitting with someone who is eating them fixed another way.
4) I love school/office supplies. (Post-It notes, pens, pencils, calendars...)
5) I am addicted to lip balm. At any given time, I may have 6-10 different lip balms in my purse.
6) I am a chronic ironer. I even iron something I am planning to wear underneath something else. (NOT my underwear though!) :o)

Hmmm...that was much easier than I anticipated....that can't be good!

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Ahhh...The weather has finally changed. Don't get me wrong: 75 degrees on Thanksgiving Day DOES have its advantages. But I LOVE cooler weather! And there is just something wrong about the window being open behind the Christmas tree! So I am excited that seasonal weather is arriving. I'm sitting here in the quiet of my house, listening to the rain. It's 4:40pm but it's pretty dark. The only lights on are the Christmas tree lights. I have been catching up on blog reading and have been wowed with what I have read. (I have some pretty amazing friends!) I'm feeling blessed....and I just wanted you to know.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

I really wanted that last blog post to last forever. I know....VERY unrealistic! So B came to spend fall break with us; it was really good....for the first couple of days. Then on Friday night, his mother called asking some questions. It seems he had told her that his dad said something, which he didn't. Then it came out that he had told his dad something that his mom had said...that she didn't. So, his dad confronted him when he got home. It didn't go well. So now it's been 2 1/2 weeks since he's been here. Seems he can't tell the difference between the truth and a lie. And seems he can't admit that he was wrong. So he's "punishing" his dad by not seeing him. I wish he could see how is he punishing himself. Ah, but he's a teenager!

Then it hits me: are we so different? Don't we sometimes twist things around enough so a lie looks like the truth? Sometimes we get in so deep, we don't even know what truth is anymore! And then the even more convicting part: how difficult is it for us, for ME, to admit when I am wrong?????

Monday, October 16, 2006

I can't believe I have waited this long to blog this! Last Thursday, B came over to mow the lawn. He was EXTREMELY chatty, which I love! So he mowed and then he wanted to go skate before dinner. So he left and came back to eat with us. He called to say he was going to be late (he already was!) and that he had gotten stopped on his way to the skate park. Yes, his first speeding ticket. Needless to say, he was not thrilled. BUT he pretty much got over his anger quickly and we had an enjoyable dinner. Afterward, his dad had gone upstairs to do something and it was just he and I downstairs. He was talking my ear off! Telling me about school and stuff, was really great. It was one of those moments where I thought of Mary, the mother of Jesus and how she treasured all these things in her heart. That's what I am trying to learn to do; is treasure those really fun times and let them overshadow the not so good times. He's spending fall break with us. Pray for more times like this and that God would break through all the walls B has put up.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

I know! I'm going crazy with all this blogging! :o)

Today I had a day of beauty at Ihloff Salon and Spa. My husband gave this to me for our anniversary back in May. (Isn't he awesome?!)

It was FABULOUS! I was sort of nervous about it, you know all shee-shee fancy and not knowing what to expect, but it was terrific! I started with a facial, then a massage, a manicure, got my hair washed and styled and then a makeup application. FUN!! I felt like a princess!

Thanks, babe!

The two dogs on the right are my sister's dogs, Scully and Mulder. (Yes....big X Files fan!) Scully is the one in the back/middle. (The other dog is Barnum and belongs to my sister's roommate.) Dina emailed me last Thursday and said that Scully had terminal, inoperable thyroid cancer that had spread to her lungs and was not expected to make it more than a month or so. She was acting fine, so she was just going to wait until Scully seemed to be in pain before making any decisions. Well, that time came Sunday afternoon. She started coughing up blood and was extremely lethargic. So they called the vet. They had to put her to sleep. Now, those of you who know me know I am NOT an animal person. But this dog: she was so sweet! She was 10 years old and my sister had gotten her when she was a puppy. So I chose to post this picture today in honor of Scully; and also in honor of Breast Cancer Awareness Month, as they are wearing their pink ribbon bandannas.

Monday, October 09, 2006

I DID IT! I can't believe it! WHOO-HOO!!! This was taken in Burlington, IA; that's the Mighty Mississippi in the background.

I LOVE FALL!!! It's always such a long time coming around here, but it's SO worth the wait!

It finally happened: On Friday afternoon, I was actually so bored that I vacuumed! VACUUMED! Of course, my carpet needed to be vacuumed, it was just the idea that I couldn't think of anything better to do than VACUUM!

We had a nice weekend. It always goes way too fast though. B was here and was pleasant. That's been nice. Thanks to all of you who pray for us; keep it up!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Well, I talked him into going to eat at Ted's last night. :o) It was YUMMY!

Friday, October 06, 2006

My husband has traveled a lot this week. I have not. Consequently, he wants to stay in tonight. I do not. Oh well....I guess I better think of something to make for dinner.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Well, one of my dear friends informed me that she was tired of me being in a funk and I needed a new blog post, so here I am. :o)

Life is good. Things with B have been really good lately, like the old kid is back. I like that. Example: my parents were here a few weeks ago. B loves my parents, always has. He seems to enjoy spending time with them. On their last day, we all met for breakfast. B was really chatty and fun, even after we got home. I thanked him for always being so nice to my parents. Now, typically, this kid does not accept compliments well, but here's what happened: 1) he looked me in the eye; 2) he SMILED at me; and 3) he said, "You're welcome". Needless to say, I am STILL smiling about that one! :o)

BSF has started back as well as small group. Now, I know you will all be shocked to hear this, but here goes: THERE'S A PLAN! WHO KNEW!? I LOVE IT! The study of Romans and the reading of The Purpose Driven Life have amazingly run together. Over the past month since my last blog, God has really shown me some stuff about me, some of it not so pretty. He's brought amazing people into my life for me to share things with and to give me some great advice. And then there's this preacher...Convicting and life-changing....The one thing that always worries me is that I'm going to forget after a while and go back to my selfish ways. Hold me accountable, OK?

Thursday, August 31, 2006

I've been in a funk lately. Not really sure why, but tired of it. Funkiness happens, but for me, it doesn't typically last this long.

I went to the counselor today. It helped; as did time with friends last week. That's the funny thing: I was feeling friendless. I know, I know....but I was feeling it just the same. Anyway, life as a stepmom is much harder than I EVER anticipated! And I don't think I was totally unrealistic. One thing I DIDN'T anticipate at all was how much the ex-wife would be a part of our lives. Although, relatively speaking, this is a small part of our day to day lives, it permeates our WHOLE LIVES. It's like a dark cloud hanging over me. So, what I want to do is not let it permeate my whole life. I mean, I really have a great life.

I was reading Michelle's blog today and it really hit me. I have sought out every possible way to "fix" this and not spent time with, I mean REALLY SPEND time with, my Creator. And these words of wisdom from such a young one! :o) Boy, have I got a lot to learn!

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

A lot has happened since I last blogged. I traveled to Texas to see some dear friends and grew closer to another friend in the process. The day after I got home, my in-laws came for a visit. We had a fun time! The day after that, I learned that my grandfather died. Even though it wasn't totally a surprise, it still caught me off guard. That was on Saturday, July 29. So on Monday part of the in-laws left, and on Tuesday my mother-in-law left when we left for Iowa. It was a good trip, even though the circumstances weren't great. My husby got to meet my aunt and uncle from California and a cousin that he had never met. It was good to be together. And I have a cool story from the funeral.

My grandfather was a railroader for 38 years. During the service, I heard a train whistle. :o) I thought that was very cool and was talking to my parents and husby about it later, saying that I believe things like that are little hugs from God, letting us know that He is listening, that He is aware of what is going on. WELL, as I was saying that, WE HEARD A TRAIN WHISTLE! We all started laughing. It was like God was saying, "Amen, Sister!"

My stepson decided he was ready to come over on the weekends again, so he came last weekend. It went well; we hardly saw him! Of course, that is typical with a 16 year old.

I am finally getting excited for Workshop. I need to be: it will be here before we know it and there is LOTS to do!!!

Monday, July 24, 2006

I went to the lake this past weekend with some of my girlfriends from OKC. We had a great time: eating, laughing, talking, stamping, eating....It made me miss them. But it also made me so appreciate the life I have here: my awesome husband, my wonderful friends, my church family. I love that I don't have to choose one life over the other, but I can enjoy and be blessed by both.

I also learned something about myself this weekend. My husby has mentioned this before, but I actually noticed it this weekend. I often attempt to justify my opinion, rather than just sharing it and going on. I feel like I have to explain why I feel or think a certain thing. Interesting...I am going to be working on that one.

Friday, June 09, 2006

I think I may have discovered the problem between wanting to blog and not knowing what to blog and then never getting around to it.

I feel like a broken record.

Things are really hard at our house. I guess most houses with teenagers are probably not exactly pleasant. We have one that goes between two homes with VERY different values, rules, etc. That can't be easy. And he is also very used to running the show at one house. Since he doesn't have that "privilege" at our house, he is choosing not to come over. While there are good things associated with that, the fact that it is breaking my husband/his father's heart doesn't go over too well with me. Add to that the fact that I don't know how, nor is there probably even a way to help my husband as he deals with all of this.

So my heart is kind of heavy. And things sometimes feel hopeless. Yet I know they aren't because God is in control.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006

I think I may have figured out part of the reason for my lethargic-ness recently. Ever since BSF ended 2 weeks ago, I am embarrassed to say that the only time I have opened my Bible is at church. you think that could have something to do with it?! (I'm a little slow sometimes!)

Pray for me to stay in the word!

P.S. This is one of those times where I want to blog but don't know where to go from here. :o)

Wednesday, May 17, 2006

I feel weary.

Two sweet ladies from our church died this week. And they weren't OLD ladies. They were my parents age.

Life with a teenager continues to be more than hard.

I just feel weary.

But today my husband and I are celebrating our THIRD wedding anniversary! Now THAT makes me SMILE!!! :o)

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

To all in blog land who have been praying for us: THANKS! We had a really great weekend with B. I was telling our parents that we hadn't seen this boy in a very long time! It was nice. Keep up the prayers: I know we have a long road ahead, but it's nice to see a glimmer of light. :o)

Monday, April 10, 2006

Just when I am feeling so disconnected, God speaks right up! I LOVE THAT! Yesterday's Bible class and sermon both spoke to right where I am lately. And then last night at small group, a very cool thing happened. Clint suggested that we bless our new house. So we divided up into three small groups and prayed over specific parts of our house. Some upstairs in B's room, some in the kitchen and some out front. At first, I was a little intimidated by this suggestion. But I went out front with Clint and Janet. We were standing there, praying, heads bowed. Janet prayed first and then me; Clint was going to close. I prayed for our neighbors, that we would be a light for Christ in this new place. As I was praying, some of our neighbors WALKED UP TO US and asked if we were the new neighbors!!! The three of us just looked at each other. We visited for about 10 minutes. It was very cool. I felt like God was saying: "Hey, Danna...I'm still here. Hang in there. I've got other plans for those other prayers you've been praying. I'm listening though...." It was so personal! Later, I said I didn't think I had ever had quite that quick of a response from God!

Thursday, April 06, 2006

I've been feeling kind of funky lately and can't figure out how to get out of it. I hate feeling this way. I feel helpless and sometimes even hopeless, although I know I'm not. And I've been feeling disconnected. Disconnected from my husby at times, my friends, even God. UGH! I know we are supposed to learn things from the hard times, but sometimes it's just so.....well, HARD!

Saturday, April 01, 2006

The changing of seasons....Fall is my favorite, followed closely by spring. I think it's the change from extreme weather to perfect! April 1st really feels like the beginning of spring, especially when the forecasted high is 80 degrees!! So, in honor, I have painted my toenails for the first time and have sandals on. Ahhh.....

For all of my prayer buddies out there, could you throw up a few extra for us this weekend? We are both dreading it and he's not even here yet! I hate that!! Weekends are certainly NOT for dreading!!!

On a brighter note, my favorite OKC restaurant opened in BA this week: Ted's Cafe Escondido! We went last night! YUMMO!

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

Do you ever sit at your computer, wanting to blog something but not sure what? That's how I feel right now. My mind is racing with so many things. I have so much more than I deserve. Materially, spiritually....the most awesome husband that I could ever ask for. It's all sort of overwhelming to me right at this moment.

Monday, March 27, 2006

Man, I love the Tulsa Workshop!! After the announcement last year about what this year was going to be, I was more than a little nervous, but I KNEW God would do great things in and through it. WOW! Did He ever! One of the many things that is sticking out in my mind, is that I, as a member of the church of Christ, want to be known for what I'm FOR, not what I'm against. It seems to be we have somehow swept this doctrine of unity under the carpet in exchange for things that don't really matter all that much. How sad....I am praying that this Workshop and others like it will be the beginning of a change and a striving for unity!

Sunday, March 19, 2006

WOW! I didn't realize how long it had been since I blogged. It's not that I haven't had anything to say, just wondering how/if to say it and finding the time. It's hard to type when the computer is on the floor!

We got moved and our new house is starting to feel like home.

I had a meltdown this afternoon when I got home from church. I have no idea why. I mean, I could tell you what happened and what set me off, but why I got THAT upset, is TOTALLY beyond me. I wanted to call someone, but wasn't sure who would still like me after I told them what a freak I am. So here I am typing to no one and everyone that means so much to me, yet still afraid to confess. Hmmm....maybe that is my answer: I need to confess. But I'm still too scared. Maybe later....

Thursday, February 23, 2006

It's a busy time at our house. We're moving next week so it looks like a tornado has blown through this place! I will be the first to admit I am not the world's best housekeeper, but I just can't stand this clutter! Oh well, it will be over soon.

God continues to reveal this plan of His to me. WHO KNEW?! I still can't believe how long it's taken me to get this, not that I really get it now, but I'm starting to and it's really exciting! And He's given me such wonderful sisters (and an incredible husband!) to share in this journey! THANKS GOD!!

I don't think it's a coincidence that God has chosen THIS time to make Himself more known to me. Being a stepmother is hard work. And you know what else? Being a stepmother of an almost 16 year old boy is even harder! I so want to be Jesus to him. And I so want to be an encouragement to his dad.

Excitement of the day: My husby and I were eating lunch at Hideaway Pizza today. I saw this guy come in and he looked really familiar. I kept looking at him, trying to figure out if it was someone I knew. GARTH BROOKS!!!! :D That was fun!

Tuesday, January 31, 2006

He's still working on me.....

I don't know why, but I continue to be AMAZED at how God works! (Of course, it would be a very sad thing if I were to stop being amazed at God!) Bible studies, conversations, blogs, etc. have all had a theme for me recently. In our Beth Moore study, I have been convicted of legalism in my life that I really had no idea was even there! I don't want to be a Pharisee!!! Today, the lesson talked about prejudice...even prejudice against other religious groups/denominations! WHAT! I'm a legalist AND prejudiced?! The "ironic" thing is we have been having all these discussions recently about personality types, etc and I just realized that this legalistic, Pharisaical thing is part of my personality! UGH! I've been thinking and wondering and working through what is to happen at Workshop this year. While I certainly don't agree with those who have chosen to boycott, I've had some struggles in my own heart about it too. All of these things seem to go together....But here's the GOOD NEWS! God is NOT finished with me! The way I think/feel/act WILL change if I continue to seek Him with ALL of my heart, soul, mind, strength! God loves me TOO MUCH to leave me where I am! WHOO-HOO! PRAISE GOD!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, January 25, 2006

OK, I am totally stealing this from Mike Cope and I know Carrie mentioned it recently too, but I love the question and the memories it brings flooding! (As I read the comments on Mike Cope's blog, I had tears in my eyes!)


"I want worship to be directed to God and to express the thoughts of the whole community of faith. BUT, if I got to pick my favorite three worship songs to sing this Sunday morning, they would be . . . ."

Finish the sentence. I'll give you mine later.

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

New Year, New Me?

Well, my blog sisters, along with the conviction of the Holy Spirit, have inspired me to put in writing some New Year's resolutions. :o)

1) Spend time in God's word every day. Life is so much better when I do this, but I so often get "busy" and leave Him out.

2) Spend more time in prayer.

3) Be more selfless in my marriage.

4) Have a better attitude, a positive one, about my stepson.

5) Take more time to cultivate my friendships.

6) Lose 10 pounds.

7) Not beat myself up when I stumble. :o)

Thank you to my sweet friends who have encouraged me in ways they will never know completely!