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Showing posts from January, 2011

The Long, Steep and Rocky Road

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It's another gray morning.

As sleep fades, my mind awakens, ramping up the swirling that has been my life for the past four months.

No one can truly understand the emotional journey that others travel.  Only the traveler can feel the heart race, the blood pound, the cold sweat and the debilitating despair that a dark, difficult season can evoke.  Very few words of comfort or counsel can deflect the anxiety and hopelessness that is the result of circumstances just out of reach of our control.

Grief.  Recently, I heard someone say that grief is a love word.  I would agree with that; deep, heartfelt grief only comes at the loss of loved ones, ones that are such a part of our identity that their leaving rips a hole so deep in our spirit that we will never be the same.  Never.

And that leads me to consider attachment...again.  Somehow, I want to think that we are in control of what we 'attach' ourselves to, but I'm beginning to suspect that we have no choice in the matter. …

Grateful Friday

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Today, I'm grateful for letterboxing friends.  I have the honor of knowing and interacting with letterboxers all over the country - they are some of the best people I ever met!  Kind, compassionate, talented and fun-loving - I love my letterboxing community!

I'm grateful for healthy conversation.

I'm grateful to hear my children playing a game together and truly enjoying each others company.

I'm grateful that spring is coming...eventually.

I'm grateful for yummy Chinese food.

I'm grateful that the LORD listens and cares.

I'm grateful for laughter.

I'm grateful that I get to sing Shalom Aleichem tonight with friends.

I'm grateful for times that my Taylor enjoys his studies.

I'm grateful for the fact that Morgan is getting better at driving.  I'm so grateful we haven't had any mishaps with the driving lessons, too.

I'm grateful that my hubby gets to go fishing with his best buddy this weekend.

I'm grateful for hair coloring produc…

Obsessions, Hobbies and Priorities

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I think we throw the word obsessive around a little too loosely.  Have you ever thought that, as well?  I am as guilty as the next person; if you will look in the sidebar, one of the very first things you see is the definition of this blog,

"This blog is the place where the different facets of my life collide; my faith, my hobbies and my obsessions..."

Do I have obsessions...really?

I have never thought too much about the word until confronted with the concern that I am obsessive with some aspects of my life - so much so that my life priorities are out of line.  Honestly, I never even considered that some may consider constructing and wearing a Jedi costume to charity events obsessive behavior.  Fun, maybe.  Geeky, yes.  But obsessive?  I don't think so, but since it was brought up, I want to respectfully consider the possibility.

I also enjoy reading up on the fictional "Jedi philosophy" and drawing parallels and contrasts to a life of faith.  Would that be o…

Gotta

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O Sovereign LORD, you have begun to show to your servant your greatness and your strong hand. For what god is there in heaven or on earth who can do the deeds and mighty works you do?


For the LORD your G-d is a merciful G-d; he will not abandon or destroy you or forget the covenant with your forefathers, which he confirmed to them by oath.


For who is God besides the LORD? And who is the Rock except our G-d? It is G-d who arms me with strength and makes my way perfect. He makes my feet like the feet of a deer; he enables me to stand on the heights.


...A song. God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea...


Surely G-d is my help; the Lord is the one who sustains me.

Compassionate

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Luke 10
On one occasion an expert in the law stood up to test Yeshua. “Teacher,” he asked, “what must I do to inherit eternal life?”


“What is written in the Law?” he replied. “How do you read it?”


He answered, “‘Love the Lord your G-d with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength and with all your mind’; and, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.'”


"You have answered correctly,” Yeshua replied. “Do this and you will live.”


But he wanted to justify himself, so he asked Yeshua, “And who is my neighbor?”


In reply Yeshua said: “A man was going down from Jerusalem to Jericho, when he was attacked by robbers. They stripped him of his clothes, beat him and went away, leaving him half dead. A priest happened to be going down the same road, and when he saw the man, he passed by on the other side.  So too, a Levite, when he came to the place and saw him, passed by on the other side.  But a Samaritan, as he traveled, came where the man was; and when he saw him, he took pity…

Grateful Friday

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I'm grateful we saw some sunshine this week.

I'm grateful for the opportunity to help a friend who was in a horrible way.

I'm grateful for living so close to Seattle - what a great city! I am biased, though...

I'm grateful for my children who help get the house 'company ready'.

I'm grateful for a wonderful time with good friends for Tu b'Shvat.  I'm so grateful that Morgan and Alex were able to get the food ready in my absence and that we were able to get our friend discharged from the hospital in the midst of preparations - wow!  G-d is so good!

"It is a tree of life to all who grasp it and its supporters are praiseworthy. Its ways are ways of pleasantness and all its paths are peace. Long life is at its right and at its left are riches and honor..." I'm thankful for the Torah.

I'm grateful for the beautiful moon Wednesday night - it was stunning!

I'm grateful that my cats want to spend time with me no matter what.  I'm a…

Shepherding

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In our modern society, and for this modern girl, it is difficult to take hold of the concept of a shepherd.  Sure, I know what a shepherd does in practical terms (feeds, cares and keeps the sheep that are put in his care), but we are far removed from the day to day tedium that is tending livestock.  I can only imagine that it is a hard, lonely, dirty and thankless job dealing with sheep that are renowned for being less than intelligent.

I have a dear friend that owns two sheep and a llama named Bandido.  I admire her devotion to caring for her livestock; every day, regardless of weather or how she feels personally, she is out there feeding them and making sure they are doing well.  She keeps them in a pasture on her property, and as I've been over to visit, I have enjoyed being as close to the animals as they would allow.  On a visit this last fall, one of the sheep, the female I believe, was definitely more curious of me and inched closer to get a more intimate view of me getting…

Grateful Friday

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Sometimes, I just want to be grateful for the simple things.

I'm grateful for daylight and nighttime.

I'm grateful for green grass, beautiful trees and vibrant flowers.

I'm grateful for clean air, fresh water and food to eat.

I'm so grateful for healing conversation.

I'm grateful for the escape of a good book.

I'm grateful for all the wonderful souls who still want to read my blog.

I'm grateful for good music that speaks to my heart at just the right time.

I'm grateful for perfect timing.

I'm grateful for an invite to a Miss America party - I'm lookin' forward to it!

I'm grateful for brave and honest witnesses.

I'm grateful for modern medicine that enables me to breath.

I'm grateful for my wonderful respiratory doctor who is the BEST!

I'm grateful for all those that want to be my friend - most grateful.

I'm grateful that my kiddos are self-directed in their schoolwork.

I'm thankful for my friend Kelly - she is incre…

Gender

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Fact:

No one gets to choose their gender.

Conclusion:

No one should consider themselves superior because of their gender.


I am a woman.  I was raised to be a strong, independent woman.  My mother was fiercely independent and my parent's marriage was one of equality.  My father took his precocious daughter with him just about everywhere he went and I quickly learned about men by being with men, all types of men, in my growing up years.  I never even considered that men were from one planet and women were from another, to be honest.  I just accepted and learned to respect and appreciate each as I encountered them as individuals.  Likewise, I learned a great deal about women from my mother and grandmother and their female friends.  Listening to hours and hours of conversation over the years - women with women conversation, women with men conversation and men with men conversation - I soaked up the nuances of relationships.  I suppose not all are intense students of human behavior, but I…

What Happened?

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If you are reading this blog post, that means you jumped through the hoops, as it were, in order to see it.  Yes, I had to make the change from a completely public blog to an 'invite-only' blog for one reason:  to respect the wishes of a good friend.

I have said it many times, I am not ashamed or regretful of anything I have written here on this, or any other, blog or social utility.  However, my intentions, no matter how well-meaning, did not include hurting the feelings of others.  So, when I discovered that it was causing personal hurt, it just had to be stopped.  Thus, the Temple blog went private.

I want to personally thank each and every one of you that took the time to send me your email address, created a Google account and logged into to see this blog.  I'm honored beyond words.  While I have a few detractors of my opinions, I most certainly have far more that enjoy my efforts - all of you!  With each request to be invited, I smiled and felt affirmed and wanted.�…

Shabbat Meditation

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“Seek good, not evil, that you may live. Then the LORD God Almighty will be with you, just as you say he is. Hate evil, love good; maintain justice in the courts. Perhaps the LORD G-d Almighty will have mercy on the remnant of Joseph.”

- Amos 5:14-15

A Woman Of Strength

A woman of strength,
Has courage to face the day,
And the confidence,
To handle whatever comes her way.
A woman of strength,
Has so much love to give,
And more compassion,
It gives her a reason to live.
A woman of strength,
Can face trouble with more hope,
Face adversity,
Always finding the strength to cope.
A woman of strength,
Can take the bad with the good,
And learn from it all,
With a sense of pride that’s understood.
A woman of strength,
Can conduct herself with grace,
Hold her head up high,
And dignity always has its place.
A woman of strength,
Can face almost anything,
And can look forward,
To what the future will possibly bring…

Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you.  I do not give to you as the world gives…

Grateful Friday

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I don't really feel like posting a Grateful Friday this morning.  Circumstances in my life have taken a turn that I was hoping would not happen...diligently hoping.  But it would seem that I have to face facts and adjust my thinking and life.  I never thought it would be like this, but I absolutely must follow the will of the Master.  Period.

To that end, I will post the 'gratefuls' that I had collected through the week...

I am so thankful that I have this blog and the ability to speak my mind (much to the chagrin of some).  I can gratefully say that I am not ashamed of anything I have written here or anywhere else.

I want to be grateful for the opportunity to meet with others and be heard, but it didn't turn out quite like I had hoped.  I'm still grateful that the LORD gave me the experience.

I'm grateful for my good friends all over the country and even over the pond. They are precious to me.

I'm grateful that I have wonderful friends who are willing to…

My Happy Little World

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When it comes to a place to worship, I suspect we all have a picture in our mind of how we would like to have things.  I call it 'my happy little world'.  It is the best of the best; in the realm of my imagination, this is how I want things to look... 

I want a safe place, a community, for myself and my children, where we are accepted and respected as individuals.  Someplace where we feel, and are, needed and wanted.

I want that place to be accepting of all types of families, not just 'whole' ones.  In my happy little world, couples and singles are valued equally and there is no judgment of small families or large ones. 

In this world of my imagination, there is respect for both sexes.  Men are not better or smarter than women, and women don't hold higher intelligence or wits than men.  Gifts and talents are valued from all, regardless of gender, and are put to good use in this imaginary place.  This respectful attitude is something that we teach our children wit…

Yom Huledet Sameach...to me!

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46.

I am happy to report that I had a pretty good birthday this year.  Not that I had a bad birthday last year...actually, I can't remember much about last year other than Padawan took me out for a drink.  Thanks, Lis!

I got some terrific presents, too.  Things I was really wanting...even needing.

Wrapped up in pjs and morning coffee, I got my three children laughing unabashedly with me over silly YouTube videos.  Priceless.

Given to me one snippet at a time was the 100+ birthday wishes expressed to me on Facebook and other websites I frequent.  Such love and care - the sheer volume is enough to humble anyone, but most assuredly me.

Getting to hang out with my bestie for the afternoon was wrapped in a yummy drink and goodies for a birthday lunch.  Laughing and enjoying each others company is definitely a gift I was hoping for.

Stopping at The Stay for a coffee and a couple of quick hugs from good friends was a special birthday treat for this girl, that's for sure.

The lovely p…

Hope

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Hope.

Such a small word to hold so much emotion, so much potential.  Looking for the best, anticipating the positive, believing in the goodness of others and that righteousness will win this time - hope.

I wonder how much time we spend hoping.  In those life-changing circumstances, hope turns into prayers and desperate petitions to the Almighty.  We must have been created to hope, as even the most cynical of sorts have hopes and dreams of love, laughter and good life.

I certainly know how it feels to come dangerously close to losing all hope.  A dark place, that is.  During those times of languishing in the pit, so to speak, I imagined my hope as a single flame, a small flickering candle.  One more shift in the current and it would go out, leaving a suffocating darkness.  I held onto that image in my mind, my little flickering candle that was so close to going out; it was the last of my hope.  You cannot fan the flame of a candle, you can only protect it, cupping it with your hand …

Grateful January 1st

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Alright, I've never been so happy to see a year be over.  Never.  And, I won't be making any grandiose resolutions for the coming year, either.  With the luck I've been having, I'd better just stick to makin' it through each day without a major meltdown.

I'm grateful that the LORD gave me breath each day, that I had food to eat and a soft place to lay my head each night. 

This year was pretty eventful, if nothing else.  My 45th year of life has been a roller coaster ride from...well, you know where.

I'm grateful for faithful friends, especially my bestie Lisa.  She has been steadfast in her loyalty, love and acceptance through it all. I will never be able to express my gratitude for the friends, the true treasures, that the LORD has given me.

2010 continued where 2009 left off caring for a dear friend who was suffering from colon cancer.  My sweet friend Rose left us in July.  I miss her still.

I'm grateful and honored that I was able to be by her side un…