Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Costa Rica update

We've received two emails about the trip so far. Sounds like all is going well. (This is hard not being able to talk to your child!!)


Hello family and friends,

This is Amber from Pam’s email. Pam wanted to let you know that everyone arrived safely yesterday to the airport. They had a nice dinner and got some rest. Today, they traveled to their base camp. They said that the countryside was gorgeous and rainy. They are looking forward to their first work day tomorrow!

Please respond with any questions.

Have a great day!



This is Amber again with an update from the Costa Rica Team.

Pam said that the first 2 days of work were great. Currently, they are working at two separate work sites, and everyone is working very hard. They were also able to share the Gospel in town. They had a great time of worship Sunday night and are looking forward to the coming days. Pam said, “We are going to church tonight. Hope it is as amazing as Sunday was. Groups are going each day to share. At least six have come to know Christ and many are being visited and discipled. We are being stretched.”

Continue to pray for the team!

Panta ta ethne,


Monday, June 29, 2009

A Prayer~

I have a friend at work who seems to be going through more than her fair share of trials and tribulations. I sent her this prayer the other day after another trial reared its head. I'm sharing in case you too need it.

I pray for this precious family who means so much to You. I pray that You give them the strength to endure the trials and tribulations they are each facing right now. Without You, they will each buckle. Let them know beyond a shadow of a doubt that You are holding them in the palms of Your hands. Let them come to You with their burdens and frustrations and fears and pour them out to You.

We cry out to you Jehovah-Rophe as the Lord who provides spiritual, emotional and physical healing. At a time like this, all healing is necessary. We sometimes feel we can’t take anymore and when we tell You, You will provide us with what we need.

I know I don’t have the words necessary to provide my friend with any comfort. I look only to You to use me as a vessel and a tool for Your plan. With all that I have, Lord, I pray this simple prayer on her behalf . You give us the honor of interceding on half of others and I thank You for it. What a privilege it is.

I pray this in Jesus’ precious name~
Do you have a prayer you can share? I'd love for you to post it. :-)

Isn't she lovely?

I found this picture of Kristen, my youngest daughter, on my computer and made it my puter background. Isn't she just precious beyond words? She's with her dad this week in KY and I sure miss her!
Saturday, June 27, 2009

A Quick Word

What a week, huh? America has lost three of its icons this week - CRAZY!

My 16 yo left for Costa Rica this morning. They actually left for Atlanta yesterday and were flying to C.R. early this morning. It sorta hit me yesterday and I kept praying to not freak out! It worked!

How many of you are fans of Dayspring? I wanted to share the sites of two of the Dayspring writers in case you haven't met them yet! Roy Lessin and Holley Gerth. They both share great gems on their blogs. I can't seem to find words to describe them, so I guess that means you gotta go and visit them!

I'm about to put the computer away and do something with my day. I received an unexpected gift yesterday and I plan to get a mani/pedi with it today!
Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Costa Rica Prayer Calendar

My 16 yo is about to head over to Costa Rica on a mission trip! Here is a prayer calendar we were given and so I wouldn't lose it, I thought I'd post it! Feel free to pray with me for the team.

We Have A Winner!

Kari - You won the Skin Free giveaway! I'll email you with details! Congratulations Sistah!
Saturday, June 20, 2009

A Tag, Review & Giveaway!

My bloggy friend Cathy at Tales of the TCKK Family recently tagged me to post the 10th picture in the 1st folder on my computer. (The 1st folder part sorta threw me a curve so I took it to be the general picture folder.) What's funny is that the kids always complain that I have so many pictures of Maggie but so few of them, and what's the 10th picture in the folder? A picture of Maggie! that one of the kids made on faceinhole.com (hee hee hee)


A while back, I was given the opportunity to review Skin Care Products from Skin Free.
I love to review products because it gives me an opportunity to try something I might not otherwise try (and I get stuff for FREE people). So, I was able to try their products and not only that, they are giving YOU the opportunity to try their products by winning a $30 gift certificate for use at their products.

The following tidbit about Skin Free is from their website:
Recommended for individuals with:
  • Extreme Dry Skin
  • Skin or Fragrance Allergies
  • Psoriasis
  • Dermatitis
  • Eczema
  • Pregnant Moms
  • Babies
  • The Elderly
  • Diabetics
  • Renal Patients
  • After Radiation or Chemotherapy
Pharmacist formulated and doctor recommended patented formulas for delicate, sensitive and very dry or damaged skin.
  • All Natural, Vegan Ingredients
  • No Perfumes
  • No Petroleum Products
  • No Harmful Chemicals
  • No Steroids
  • No Colorants
  • No Greasy feeling
  • No Animal Testing, Cruelty Free
One of the products I was sent I just absolutely love. (I was also sent the bar soap and I liked it, but I like shower gel and I didn't use much of the soap.)

After Shower Moisture Spritz™

This is an innovative use for an ancient product. We have taken our delectable bath oil and placed it in an easy to use spritz bottle. This gives you the perfect moisturizing solution for people who always take showers. Our fine mist spray bottle allows you to reach all areas of your body, even the middle of your back.

Spray this light, but effective blend of oils and Vitamin E onto moist, warm skin immediately after your shower for maximum hydration. As you towel dry, the oils soak deep into your skin to leave you free from dry, itching skin all day, with no greasy feeling afterward.

Our oils are selected to offer the richest content of anti-inflammatory agents, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals for your skin.

Safety Information: The Environmental Working Group has rated this product 0 in it's Cosmetics Safety Database.

Score Key:

  • 0-2 Low Hazard
  • 3-6 Moderate Hazard
  • 7-10 High Hazard

Ingredients: Our After Shower Moisture Spritz™ contains - Olea Europea (Olive) Seed Oil, Prunes Amgdalus Dulcis (Sweet Almond) Oil, and Tocopherol (Vitamin E)

'm always a little doubtful of oil that isn't going to be...well...oily after I use it. This product is great! It doesn't take much to achieve maximum effects and it's NOT OILY! I just keep it on my shower ledge and use it before I grab my towel. My skin stays moisturized but NOT OILY. I LOVE IT.

How to enter!

I bet you're wondering how to enter the giveaway, aren't you? Here's what you do. Go to Skin Free and look at their different products. Then, come back here and tell me how you'd use your $30 gift certificate. If you link to the this post, come back and enter again. If you twitter or Facebook about it, leave another entry and let me know. You don't have to follow my blog, but if you already do, BAM another entry! So, you have the opportunity to enter 5 different times (twitter and Facebook are two different entries). (Just make sure you leave a comment for each type of entry.)

If you don't win the giveaway, you can order the products from the Skin Free website or now you can buy them at Walgreen's! I'll end this giveaway Monday, June 22, before I go to bed and depending on the number of entries, I'll post the winner then (or if there are a lot and I hope there are, it'll be on Tuesday before the winner is announced)!

It's hot here in Alabama. Try to stay cool if it's hot where you are!

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Tip from Hungry Girl

Don't you just love milkshakes and ice cream? I sure do - it's one of the pleasures that James & I both have so we have to really limit our trips to the ice cream shop. I got this article in an email today or yesterday and thought I'd pass it along to you. It's courtesy of HungryGirl.

Shake Down
If we're being honest (and we always are), we need to let you in on a little secret. Vanilla milkshakes are one of our greatest weaknesses. They're thick, creamy, frozen, and completely delicious. Unfortunately, behind most thick and delicious milkshakes lies a TON of fat and calories, usually due to TOO MUCH ice cream and full-fat milk.

For example, the crazy Vanilla Hand-Scooped Ice Cream Shake at Carl's Jr. has 710 calories and 33g fat (POINTS® value 17*), which is more calories and almost as much fat as the chain's Famous Star with Cheese hamburger. Yikes!

Chances are, when you get a milkshake, it's only PART of your meal. And frankly, no one needs to add hundreds and hundreds of calories' worth of drinkable ice cream to a meal. Need a reasonable solution?

DRINK OUR MILKSHAKE INSTEAD. Seriously! Our shake is delicious and thick with a sweet 'n creamy vanilla flavor you'll LOVE. (The picture is from their website.)

'Nilla Light!
Pretty much EVERYONE is gonna love this creamy, dreamy vanilla-licious shake. So grab your shake stuff and toss one together, Blendy!

1/2 cup Breyers Double Churn Free Creamy Vanilla fat-free ice cream
1/2 cup light vanilla soymilk
1/2 tbsp. Coffee-mate Sugar Free French Vanilla powdered creamer
2 no-calorie sweetener packets (like Splenda or Truvia)
1/8 tsp. vanilla extract
1 cup crushed ice or 5 - 7 ice cubes
2 tbsp. Fat Free Reddi-wip
Optional: maraschino cherry

Place powdered creamer in a small dish, and add 1/2 tbsp. very hot water.
Stir until powder dissolves, and then transfer mixture to a blender.
Add all other ingredients except the Reddi-wip to the blender.
Blend at high speed until completely mixed.
Pour into your favorite glass and top with Reddi-wip. If you like, finish it off with a cherry!

Serving Size: 16 oz. w/ whipped topping (entire shake)
Calories: 155
Fat: 2.5g
Sodium: 108mg
Carbs: 28.5g
Fiber: 3g
Sugars: 16g
Protein: 6g
POINTS® value 3*

(Non-Hungry Girl Shake)

Serving Size: 16 oz. w/ whipped topping (standard medium shake)
Calories: 648
Fat: 27.5g
Sodium: 293mg
Carbs: 88.5g
Fiber: 0g
Sugars: 62g
Protein: 13g
POINTS® value 15*

YOWZA! If you try this before I do, let me know. I'm not so keen on soy-milk, but I'm thinking if it's blended in with other things then I might be ok!
Tuesday, June 16, 2009

McShane Update

I got everything all together and updated the McShane post, along with a picture of his "new leg". I joined myspace just so I could be "friends" with McShane. I don't know much more than I did, except that the surgery did happen and he's being fitted for his prosthetic. I posted a picture on the "update" blog.
For those of you who pray for me and him and our family, it means more than I'll ever be able to say, especially in light of the fact that there was just recently a baby hoax that many of my fellow siestas were unknowingly a part of. The fact that you show faith to believe and care means so much. (See, I just don't have the words.)
Can I pray for you? I'd be honored to intercede on your behalf.
Friday, June 12, 2009

A post of old

Before I get to the purpose of this post (if you can call it that), I wanted to let you know that I'm still waiting to hear back from brother-in-law about what decision has been made about McShane and whether they are going to amputate the leg, try a different surgery or just take a wait and see approach. Thank you for praying with me and on behalf of McShane. (Talk about your irony...read on!)
My friend Mary wrote an interesting blog about someone who wasn't who they said they were. I'm quite certain that if you've spent anytime online, you've run into this problem before. This is a blog I posted after one of the times this happened to me. This was written on my old yahoo! 360 blog and it was written b.C. (before Christ) so I apologize if it's a little rough or a tiny bit offensive. (Mary and the people who commented on her post had the right attitude - this person still needs us to go before the throne on her behalf because something isn't right with her.) I posted on the comment another blog post I had and I'm posting this one too. (Luckily, I have no idea about whom she's talking but it just set off all the bells and alarms as if I did.)
A poser is someone posing to be someone they aren't. (It's a term my daughter taught me. If you want a better definition, please look it up under urban dictionary or something like that.)

I have chatted for longer than I really care to admit, even before I found my way to yahoo and AL:2. Although from that room, I have some great friends I have met in there, and, of course, I met my husband in that room. Most of the folks that I have run across are as sincere as the day is long and we're all a little messed up .

However, there are a few people who just really aren't right. They come up with these fantastically tall tales which are so false, yet you always have people who fall for those stories. One woman, bless her heart, has suffered at the abusive hands of her husband, has a chronic disease, has recovered from Stage IV cancer (without the use of medicine), has been a firefighter (while battling this Stage IV cancer), has divorced her husband (though no records are on file), has been medivacced to the hospital after a car accident, though she didn't suffer any injuries, and the list goes on and on. Somehow she is always the victim and she can come up with an excuse for any inconsistency that is pointed out to her. Boy has she gotten mad at me for finding out the truth on some of these things. Of course, I have already talked about the woman who had died, only to resurrect and then really be killed in a car accident. (Yes, bloggy readers, this really happened.)

In the 360 circle of friends, I have run into someone on my friends' list who I felt just wasn't who she said she was. I kept my doubts mostly to myself, because I had never spoken with this person; however, when she became "sick" and then disappeared, I let my doubts be known. (She has deleted her 360 page, but she'll be back. They always come back.) And another friend had one on her friends' list who isn't telling the truth about a horrible illness. Shoot, I have no knowledge of leukemia, but I do know that when someone says she is going to a small cancer facility in TX and provides the name and I know that the facility is a leader in cancer related illnesses, that something just isn't washing.

These people need mental help. They have made doubting Thomases out of a lot of people. It's sad when someone really is sick or needs help and few will offer it because they just don't believe folks anymore. I'm that way. If I don't personally know you, I just can't get too emotionally attached to you. I will pray for you, if you ask; I will ask how you are, because I'm a caring and loving person, but if I can't come visit or call you in the hospital because you refuse to provide that information, well...I just can't believe. When I tell you that when someone says they have cancer, that will hit me to the core. Same holds true of me ~ If you don't know me, you don't have to believe me. (Sidenote added: To my bloggy sisters, I love you with the love that only God can bestow to a person and I do get emotionally attached to you!)

I also know that in my case, when you are really sick or a family member is really sick, the last thing you really want to do is pour your heart out to a bunch of folks on the internet. I use chatting as my escape from reality. When my brother and mom were sick, I would send emails. I didn't want to talk on the phone or chat with anyone.

So, where is all of this leading? Now that I have said some of my thoughts, I lead you to some of the online sources regarding this information:

Posers Defined -- Of course that's not the name of the site but the real name was really just too long.
This article, Chronic Faking, is more about Munchausen by Internet Faking Illness Online. Look at these ways to spot a poser:

Clues to Detection of False Claims
Based on experience with two dozen cases of Munchausen by Internet, I have arrived at a list of clues to the detection of factitious Internet claims. The most important follow:

1. the posts consistently duplicate material in other posts, in books, or on health-related websites; the characteristics of the supposed illness emerge as caricatures;

2. near-fatal bouts of illness alternate with miraculous recoveries; claims are fantastic, contradicted by subsequent posts, or flatly disproved;

3. there are continual dramatic events in the person's life, especially when other group members have become the focus of attention;

4. there is feigned blitheness about crises (e.g., going into septic shock) that will predictably attract immediate attention;

5. others apparently posting on behalf of the individual (e.g., family members, friends) have identical patterns of writing.

Dr. Marc D. Feldman states: “I coined the terms ‘virtual factitious disorder’ (Feldman, Bibby, & Crites, 1998) and ‘Munchausen by Internet’ (Feldman, 2000) to refer to people who simplify this ‘real-life’ process by carrying out their deceptions online. Instead of seeking care at numerous hospitals, they gain new audiences merely by clicking from one support group to another. Under the guise of illness, they can also join multiple groups simultaneously. Using different names and accounts, they can even sign on to one group as a stricken patient, his frantic mother, and his distraught son all to make the ruse utterly convincing. If suspicions are raised or the ruse is uncovered, they quickly move on to a new hospital, town, state, or in the worst cases — country. Like traveling performers, they simply play their role again.” (In this case, they will reappear as someone else under a different name, etc.)

As is the case with anything and anyone, you have to use your own judgment when it comes to believing folks. I have a feeling I'm going to upset a person or two with my opinions about this. If that is the case, I apologize in advance for doing so.
(Isn't it ironic that I talk about my nephew in one paragraph and then posers in another? Oh the irony.)
Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Decision to made about McShane's leg...

The surgeon has recommended an amputation of McShane’s leg because the muscle that was moved around during his first surgery is dying. In lieu of amputation, McShane could have another type of surgery where they take a muscle from his back and put it in his leg (to replace the dying muscle). Mike has to make a decision today. Last I heard, he's waiting to see a pathology report that should be ready today, and he’s leaning towards amputation. McShane said he would like to keep his leg, but understands if he can’t. Can you even imagine? (I hope you can’t.)

Without stating the obvious…I’m not male, nor is this my son or daughter going through all of this. I can’t imagine the stigma of not having a leg and maybe legs means more if you’re a male. As a mother, I would just want what is best for my child and I would follow the surgeon’s advice ~ especially when he said “If this was my son, I would amputate his leg.”

My heart hurts for them. I’m tender about all the things they are going through that I have so many prayers that I just can’t seem to put them in words to share with anyone. I’ve asked for a lot of prayer during this situation and I honestly appreciate the fact that you allow me to ask. I thank each of you from the bottom of my heart. So, instead of asking for someone sorta specific, I’m just asking you to pray as you feel lead. May God bless you and smile down on you for interceding on their behalf.
Monday, June 8, 2009

Wow - He's Grown!

Oh my goodness how my little sweet peat has grown! This is my little grandson (son of James' oldest son who lives in Germany) and I hadn't seen any new pictures of him since March! They posted several new pictures, some of which show him shoving anything and everything in his mouth to chew on (arms, feet ~his own~, blankies, pacis). This I picked this one to post because he just looks so darn cute and it reminds me so much of my James when he was a baby. (See James' picture below! I'm at work and can't do any cropping or editing. Even his little red eyes are cute, although he has to prettiest blue eyes.)
McShane is supposed to go back in for more surgery today. I'm praying praying praying. Thank you for praying with me.
The kids are helping out with VBS this week. Do you have fond memories of going to VBS? It was one of my favorite things to do. I remember learning John 3:16. My step-sister got a charm with a mustard seed in it after learning her verse (Matt. 17:20) and I wanted one too. Oh the things we remember...
I hope you have a great Monday. I'm off to work on the work piled up at my desk. I hope you have a blessed day.
Love, me!
Saturday, June 6, 2009

Have you ever wondered...

...How people come up with the cute and creative blog titles? Yeah, me too. Obviously it's not a skill or talent God has bestowed on me. I figure this will be another random post but I already had one "random title"

First, HOW ARE YOU? I've missed you!

Work has gotten incredibly busy lately! I enjoy being busy but this has been nuts! I'm hoping this is a sign of job security! I've come home at night just pooped and haven't really done anything but sit on the couch and babbled some nonsense and then gone to bed. So, I guess what I'm saying is I haven't taken the time to comment on blogs. Shoot, I'm pretty far behind in reading them too.

We started Beth Moore's Esther: It's Tough Being a Woman bible study last week. Have you done this study? I LOVE IT! Each week, we're given a theme on how it's tough being a woman. This week's theme is "It's Tough Being a Woman in a World where Beauty is a Treatment". Last session I had everyone share what their one cosmetic item was that they couldn't live without or leave the house without and I was suprised at how many of us need some type of moisturizer (either for our face, body or lips)! I think one person said mascara, one for foundation and one for lipstick. If you'd have asked me that question 10 years ago, it would've been hard for me to narrow it down to one! Now, it's facial moisturizer...(It really needs to be mascara because I have NO eyelashes!)

I feel like I really scored on my new purchase! It's the first time I've ordered from the Betty Crocker store. Of course the fact that I don't cook like I should didn't deter me from buying something for the kitchen. It's a Nonstick Everyday Pan from Calphalon and it was a mere $39.99! I also bought a couple of spatulas for $3.99. I can never find flippers when I need them. When I went to pull info for the post, the site says the pan with the glass lid is sold out (already!)

I'm having the hardest time getting these pictures put up and moved around properly. Sorry if they are extra wonky.

Oh, one more thing! I got my daughter's "old" iPod and finally got some Cathy stuff on it. I downloaded Beth Moore's: David, A Heart Like His: Intimate Reflections on the Life of David. I loved that Beth read it! It made getting stuck in traffic bearable :-).

Ok, that's about it for now. Tell me, how are you?!?
Thursday, June 4, 2009

Prayer for McShane needed

I don't have a lot of time to link and stuff, so please forgive me. I'll get it all fixed up later when I get home!

Here's my request for McShane. Please keep him in your prayers and lift him UP. I know God can do ALL THINGS and I'm believing Him and thanking Him for those answered prayers.
I just got off the phone with James, who just got off the phone with Mike, regarding McShane. (James is doing his "field" thing and talking to him right now is very sparce.)

The skin graft that McShane had during his surgery did not take. (I don't know what the skin graft was for.) The plastic surgeon came in a bit ago and said that McShane has got to have emergency surgery because it looks like the muscle in his leg is dying. He wanted to have surgery today but McShane had ingested some milk today. The plan as I understand it to have surgery tomorrow morning on his leg.

McShane has been having trouble healing since the chemo started and this was one of the concerns we had following the surgery. Just that he'd be really slow to heal. I'm not surprised the skin graft didn't take, but I am surprised to hear of the problems it is causing. There is a chance that he will lose his leg. (You might recall that the surgery was called limb salvaging surgery so there has been that fear anyway.)

Please pray for the surgeon's hands to be guided by the Ultimate Healer! I pray for McShane's healing and I really hope he'll be able to keep his leg and will have full use of that leg! I'm believing God and I know He's got McShane in the palm of His hands.

Thank you dear ones for your continued prayers. I love you so!
Tuesday, June 2, 2009

I got questions - do you have answers?

If you've done the Beth Moore Esther bible study, you might recognize the following questions. The central theme is that it's tough being a woman (boy, ain't it?). We're putting together a book in our class and I'm interested in what other people have to say :). Would you share one or all of the answers the questions below? You can submit it as yourself or anonymously.

1. Please list three ways it's hard to be a woman.
2. Favorite recipes
3. Tips (entertainment, beauty, etc.)
4. Favorite promises from Scripture
5. Best advice you've received (or wish you had received)
6. Advice you've given (or wish you had given)
7. Something you were told about being a woman (by mom, aunt, grandmother, sister, etc.)

I'm off for another fun filled work day! I hope you have a great day too!
Monday, June 1, 2009

God's Chisel

This is sort of long, but it's really worth the time to watch. We were created in God's image, but we sure don't go along the path of life that way. Choosing to be a light for His glory is not without it's pain, but WOW it's worth it. (That is to say I have a long way to go but I'm praising Him, however painful it might be, through the journey.) Enjoy!