Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Merry Christmas!

I just want to say Merry Christmas to all of my readers. Beginning tomorrow I will be spending Christmas week with my family--and I am so excited. I work in Television news, and we don't always get holidays off, so it's always a treat when we do. So, I hope you have a wonderful Christmas with the people you love. Remember the reason for the season... JESUS!!!!
Here is the story of why we celebrate Christmas from the Bible:

Luke 2
1 In those days Caesar Augustus issued a decree that a census should be taken of the entire Roman world. 2 (This was the first census that took place while[a] Quirinius was governor of Syria.) 3 And everyone went to their own town to register.
4 So Joseph also went up from the town of Nazareth in Galilee to Judea, to Bethlehem the town of David, because he belonged to the house and line of David. 5 He went there to register with Mary, who was pledged to be married to him and was expecting a child. 6 While they were there, the time came for the baby to be born, 7 and she gave birth to her firstborn, a son. She wrapped him in cloths and placed him in a manger, because there was no guest room available for them.
8 And there were shepherds living out in the fields nearby, keeping watch over their flocks at night. 9 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. 10 But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news that will cause great joy for all the people. 11 Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is the Messiah, the Lord. 12 This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
13 Suddenly a great company of the heavenly host appeared with the angel, praising God and saying,
14 “Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”
15 When the angels had left them and gone into heaven, the shepherds said to one another, “Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened, which the Lord has told us about.”
16 So they hurried off and found Mary and Joseph, and the baby, who was lying in the manger. 17 When they had seen him, they spread the word concerning what had been told them about this child, 18 and all who heard it were amazed at what the shepherds said to them. 19 But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart. 20 The shepherds returned, glorifying and praising God for all the things they had heard and seen, which were just as they had been told.

Matthew 2
1 After Jesus was born in Bethlehem in Judea, during the time of King Herod, Magi[a] from the east came to Jerusalem 2 and asked, “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star when it rose and have come to worship him.”
3 When King Herod heard this he was disturbed, and all Jerusalem with him. 4 When he had called together all the people’s chief priests and teachers of the law, he asked them where the Messiah was to be born. 5 “In Bethlehem in Judea,” they replied, “for this is what the prophet has written:

6 “‘But you, Bethlehem, in the land of Judah,
are by no means least among the rulers of Judah;
for out of you will come a ruler
who will shepherd my people Israel.’[b]”

7 Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared. 8 He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”

9 After they had heard the king, they went on their way, and the star they had seen when it rose went ahead of them until it stopped over the place where the child was. 10 When they saw the star, they were overjoyed. 11 On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. Then they opened their treasures and presented him with gifts of gold, frankincense and myrrh. 12 And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

A friend sent me this story in my email... it's worth reading!:::

The man slowly looked up. This was a woman clearly accustomed to the finer things of life. Her coat was new. She looked like she had never missed a meal in her life. His first thought was that she wanted to make fun of him, like so many others had done before.

"Leave me alone," he growled... To his amazement, the woman continued standing. She was smiling -- her even white teeth displayed in dazzling rows.

"Are you hungry?" she asked.

"No," he answered sarcastically. "I've just come from dining with the president.. Now go away."

The woman's smile became even broader.

Suddenly the man felt a gentle hand under his arm. "What are you doing, lady?" the man asked angrily. "I said to leave me alone."

Just then a policeman came up. "Is there any problem, ma'am?" he asked.

"No problem here, officer," the woman answered. "I'm just trying to get this man to his feet. Will you help me?"

The officer scratched his head. "That's old Jack. He's been a fixture around here for a couple of years. What do you want with him?"

"See that cafeteria over there?" she asked. "I'm going to get him something to eat and get him out of the cold for awhile."

"Are you crazy, lady?" the homeless man resisted. "I don't want to go in there!" Then he felt strong hands grab his other arm and lift him up. "Let me go, officer. I didn't do anything.."

"This is a good deal for you, Jack," the officer answered. "Don't blow it."

Finally, and with some difficulty, the woman and the police officer got Jack into the cafeteria and sat him at a table in a remote corner. It was the middle of the morning, so most of the breakfast crowd had already left and the lunch bunch had not yet arrived.

The manager strode across the cafeteria and stood by his table. "What's going on here, officer?" he asked.."What is all this, is this man in trouble?"

"This lady brought this man in here to be fed," the policeman answered.

"Not in here!" the manager replied angrily. "Having a person like that here is bad for business."

Old Jack smiled a toothless grin. "See, lady. I told you so. Now if you'll let me go, I didn't want to come here in the first place."

The woman turned to the cafeteria manager and smiled. "Sir, are you familiar with Eddy and Associates, the banking firm down the street?"

"Of course I am," the manager answered impatiently. "They hold their weekly meetings in one of my banquet rooms."

"And do you make a goodly amount of money providing food at these weekly meetings?"

"What business is that of yours?"

"I, sir, am Penelope Eddy, president and CEO of the company."

"Oh.." The woman smiled again.. "I thought that might make a difference."

She glanced at the cop who was busy stifling a laugh. "Would you like to join us in a cup of coffee and a meal, officer?"

"No thanks, ma'am," the officer replied. "I'm on duty."

"Then, perhaps, a cup of coffee to go?"

"Yes, ma'am. That would be very nice."

The cafeteria manager turned on his heel. "I'll get your coffee for you right away, officer."

The officer watched him walk away. "You certainly put him in his place," he said.

"That was not my intent.... Believe it or not, I have a reason for all this."

She sat down at the table across from her amazed dinner guest. She stared at him intently.

"Jack, do you remember me?"

Old Jack searched her face with his old, rheumy eyes. "I think so -- I mean you do look familiar."

"I'm a little older perhaps," she said. "Maybe I've even filled out more than in my younger days when you worked here, and I came through that very door, cold and hungry."

"Ma'am?" the officer said questioningly. He couldn't believe that such a magnificently turned out woman could ever have been hungry.

"I was just out of college," the woman began. "I had come to the city looking for a job, but I couldn't find anything. Finally I was down to my last few cents and had been kicked out of my apartment.. I walked the streets for days.. It was February and I was cold and nearly starving. I saw this place and walked in on the off chance that I could get something to eat."

Jack lit up with a smile.. "Now I remember," he said. "I was behind the serving counter. You came up and asked me if you could work for something to eat. I said that it was against company policy."

"I know," the woman continued. "Then you made me the biggest roast beef sandwich that I had ever seen, gave me a cup of coffee, and told me to go over to a corner table and enjoy it. I was afraid that you would get into trouble.. Then, when I looked over and saw you put the price of my food in the cash register, I knew then that everything would be all right."

"So you started your own business?" Old Jack said.

"I got a job that very afternoon. I worked my way up. Eventually I started my own business that, with the help of God, prospered.." She opened her purse and pulled out a business card. "When you are finished here, I want you to pay a visit to a Mr. Lyons. He's the personnel director of my company. I'll go talk to him now and I'm certain he'll find something for you to do around the office."

She smiled. "I think he might even find the funds to give you a little advance so that you can buy some clothes and get a place to live until you get on your feet. If you ever need anything, my door is always open to you."

There were tears in the old man's eyes. "How can I ever thank you?" he asked.

"Don't thank me," the woman answered. "To God goes the glory. He led me to you."

Outside the cafeteria, the officer and the woman paused at the entrance before going their separate ways.. "Thank you for your help officer," she said..

"On the contrary, Ms. Eddy," he answered. "Thank you. I saw a miracle today, something that I will never forget, And thank you for the coffee.."

Book Review for "Hatteras Girl"

Jackie is a journalist, but it's not her dream job. Her dream is to run a bed and breakfast--one from which she has good memories from her childhood. Her family's dream is to see her get married to a good man. So, she's gone on countless blind dates, and at 30, she's convinced she may never get married. But then something wonderful happens...her journalistic job brings her to a man that not only can make her dreams come true with the Bed and Breakfast, but she believes he may also offer her something she's never had before...true love. Is he the one? Or has "the one" been under her nose all along?

I loved this book... it reminded me of myself in many ways. I am also a journalist, and I'm also single and over 30. This book made me laugh at the lengths one can go through to not only reach toward a dream, but also to reach toward love...and the lengths family members will go to to help you find love. I would definitely recommend this book to women who are looking for a good laugh, and even a good cry...it's the ultimate "chick" book! I didn't want it to end...I wanted to see where it went...

There was one part of the book that I felt like skipped several chapters...it's like all of a sudden, she was dating someone...but we didn't find out exactly how it happened. I wish the author would have went into more detail.

I was provided a complimentary copy of "Hatteras Girl" by Bethany House Publishers for my honest review.

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Happy Birthday, Robbie

Happy Birthday Baby Brother, on what would have been you 29th birthday. Wow, how time flies. It seems like just yesterday, we were teenagers, cutting up and laughing, or fighting like brothers and sisters do. I miss that. I miss you. Everyday I miss you. Do you get birthday gifts in Heaven? I sure hope so. Although, I know everyday with Jesus is a gift. And now you have Grandmama there to celebrate with you on your special day. I'm so jealous. I miss her, too.

I love you Robbie, and although I only had you here on earth for 15 years, you're always in my heart. I've posted this poem before, but this poem says it all...I carry you in my heart.

"I Carry You in My Heart"
E.E. Cummings
(an excerpt)
Here is the deepest secret no one knows.
Here is the root of the root... and the bud of the bud...
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life... which grows higher than the soul can hope... or mind can hide.
It is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart.
I carry your heart. I carry it in my heart.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

An American Holiday

these are pictures from last Thanksgiving.

I love Thanksgiving. It's all about the food and family. There are no gifts involved, just the gift of each other's presence-- that's the most important thing. This year, just as in many years past...I don't get to be with my family on Thanksgiving. I will be working. But I do get to be with my family on Friday and for the weekend. And I am very excited. My brother (another I was blessed with through marriage) and his family will be at my dad's for Thanksgiving. I love them dearly...my niece and nephew are so cute and sweet... But they live in Chicago...and I very rarely get to see them. So this year I'm thankful for the time I will get to spend, not only with my dad and step-mom, but also the time I will have with Chris, Francoise, Raphael and Olivia. So even tho I won't be there to see them on THursday, I will cherish my time Friday...because it is definitely a gift.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Within My Heart- By Tamera Alexander

I just finished reading the book "Within My Heart" by Tamera Alexander, and I have to say, I really enjoyed this book. The story takes place in the 1800s in Colorado. THe book has two central characters The first is a woman who is trying to raise her two sons alone, and survive, after her husband is killed. Her father was a doctor and she was able to learn a lot from him, which helped her care for others when needed. The second character, a doctor who, for some reason, decided to move out west and offer this town medical care. The doctor very quickly falls in love with this widowed mother of two, but she won't have anything to do with him. SHe thinks he is arrogant, plus, there's no way she is going to allow herself to fall in love with anyone else. Her love died. After she is injured, she begins to see things a bit differently, and this opens her to possibilities that she never dreamed of.

This book, for the most part is very good. IT explores the possibility of love when you feel that has been taken away from you. It also explores friendship. The reader is also taken through tragedy and hardship, but in the end, even after all of that, the main characters survive...a bit stronger than before.

Don't let the first chapter fool you...keep reading. I really felt the first chapter just didn't belong in the book. It takes you WAY back in time, and truthfully, it's not engaging at all! I felt this "memory" could have been added somewhere inside the context of the book. But overall, a very good read.

Bethany House provided me with a copy of this book for my honest review.


Friday, November 12, 2010

A Wedding and a Funeral

The weekend of October 22-24 started as a very happy weekend, and took a huge turn to make it one of the saddest weekend's of my life.

On Thursday, October 21st, I flew to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, for the wedding of my college roommate, and very dear friend, Jill. Jill and I are both in our early 30s, so this was a very special occasion. She finally met the love of her life, and we celebrated that! It was so great spending time with her during her special weekend. We shared a room like old times, and stayed up late talking both Thursday and Friday night. I even got to take many of her wedding pictures, since I am getting into photography....my gift to her. She got married on Saturday, October 23rd.

On Sunday, October 24th, I flew back home. My plane arrived back in Chattanooga at 11:30am. Around one o'clock that afternoon, my phone rang. I was napping, so I let it go to voicemail. But it didn't. Instead it started ringing again. So, I looked at the phone to find it was my mother calling. My grandmother, who had been sick for some time went to be with the Lord that Sunday morning.

My grandmother and I have been close since I was in college. My junior year, I transferred to a new school and decided to live with her rather than live on campus. Since then, we have been the best of friends. So, although I knew it was coming, this was devastating news to me. So, after traveling to Pittsburgh, I repacked my suitcase, and got in the car and headed south, to Mobile, where my grandmother's funeral would be held.

I did get a gift, though. My grandmother had been staying at my mom's for some time. The weekend before, I had been home and got to see her, to talk to her, to tell her how much I loved her. She got to express that to me as well. I will always thank God for that opportunity, that gift, since I do live nearly four hours away.

On a different note, yesterday marked the five year anniversary of this blog's existence. I thank all of you for reading. It's amazing to think that people are interested in what I have to say.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Is this your new house?

I am not one to use my blog to sell things, but this is important. My family really needs to sell my grandmother's house. So if you live in the Mobile, Alabama, area, or have plans to move there, or know someone who needs a house in the Mobile area, please consider this house. Here's the link. Thank you!

Friday, November 05, 2010

Rainy Days

I have a friend that I've adopted as my "little sister". She wrote this poem, and it spells out what I love about a summer rain! So I asked Olivia if I could share it...Oh, I almost forgot to mention. Olivia is 14! Here it is:

The grass is alive in a vibrant and vivid green.
An elegant color, such as this, is rarely seen.
A summer rain is falling, showering the ground,
Nourishing every plant’s roots that it has found.
Beads of raindrops are visible on every growing leaf,
The summer heat is not blaring; it’s a relief.
I am relaxed and calmed, as it taps on my windowpane,
But I refuse to sit here inside; I want to feel the rain.
So I hurry outside, and the rain soaks into my hair.
Water droplets fall on my tongue, as I stick it into the air.
The rain drenches my body from my head to my feet,
As it continues to cover my backyard in steady sheets.
My body is refreshed, as the gentle rain drizzles.
The tranquil rain is so peaceful, as it sprinkles.
I can’t help myself; like a kid I must skip and run.
A rainbow of pastel colors appears-
While shining through it arrives the sun.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Review for "Catching Moondrops"

It's 1938 in a small Virginia town. It's a time when the color of your skin determines the staion you hold in society. White men think they're superior, and in many of their eyes, it's okay to do anything, even murder, to put others in their place.

That's the setting for "Catching Moondrops", by Jennifer Erin Valent. Tyndale House Pubishers provided me with an advanced reader copy, and I absolutely loved it.

18-year-old Jessilyn lives in a time when it's not okay for black people and white people to be friends. But her family invited a young, black girl to live as a part of their family when her parents died. So, Jessilyn and Gemma grew up, not only as sisters, but as best friends. Jessilyn's parents even viewed Gemma as a daughter. That didn't sit too well with the town folk. Then a black doctor moved to town. As you can imagin, this ruffled a few feathers as well.

I loved this book. It attempts to break down the walls of prejudice. Several times in the book, a statement is made: Just because someone is born with darker skin (or lighter), doesn't mean the person is different, or bad, or not as good as you. I wish some living in today's society would realize this fact. Everyone loves, hurts, laughs, and cries.

This book is a love story, but it's also written by a Christian author. Many times, Christian authors leave details about intimacy out. I'm guessing they do this to keep from offending readers, but when they do that, they leave out some very real facts. Many will just say, then they kissed. Okay? Well what did they feel? This book describes kisses and touches, and tells you what Jessilyn is feeling in those moments. They are described in good taste, but the point is, they are described. I loved that because there's always a feeling that goes along with any intimate moment.

Many would believe fiction books are only that: Fiction. I would challenge that thought and say you can sometimes learn a lot from fiction. This is one of those books. Jessilyn and her family teach the reader a lot about love for your neighbor.

One of my favorite statements in this book: "The memories of where we were, remind us of how we got to where we are." We should always remember how we got to our place in life. That, my friend, is very important.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

My Sister

Today is my sister, Lisa's, birthday, and over the last few days, I have been reminiscing a lot about our lives together. You see, Lisa and I weren't born sisters. She became my sister the moment my mother married my step-dad. I had never really wanted a younger sister, but you see, God always knows what we need. When our parents got married, I was 13, and she was eight. She drove me crazy--always following me around, wanting to do everything I did. She liked me right from the start, and I think I liked her, too, but I wouldn't admit that at the time.

As time went on, and as both of us got older, she and I became the best of friends. We would stay up all night, giggling. We would share our deepest secrets with each other. I would even let her go out with me and my friends sometimes. Then I went off to college. I found a picture the other day of Lisa. On the back, she had written a note to me at college. It said she missed me and that she would send me new pictures all the time. I know I got a few.

When she went to college, she was only a couple hours away from where I lived. We saw each other frequently then. She would spend weekends with me. WE would ride around town, blaring the music, and singing at the top of our lungs. We just loved to be together. And I knew then that God knew I needed a sister, and he blessed me with Lisa.

Since college, our lives have grown a bit apart. She got married a few years ago...and I've moved all over the southeast. We have had a few weekends here and there together, and I cherish each and every one. I always look forward to the times we will get together in the future.

Happy Birthday, my dear sister.

I love you so much!

Friday, October 08, 2010

Storm Warning

I review for BookSneeze

Today it's beautiful outside. You wouldn't know there's a storm brewing. This storm isn't of the weather kind. It's of the supernatural kind. This is my review of the book "Storm Warning" by Billy Graham. And I have to say this book was provided to me by BookSneeze for my review.

Have you ever noticed how most people are fascinated with storms? Maybe you are. I know I am. Billy Graham speaks of another type of storm. A storm that he's been fascinated with in his lifetime...he says he believes the storm clouds are darker now than they have ever been.

The first chapter in this book made me think very hard about the world today. I never thought about the numbers of dead in recent world events--the earthquakes in Haiti and in Chile. Hurricane Katrina. In some of these events there were no warning, but in some there were warnings and folks failed to heed them. Billy Graham speaks of the warnings in this book that people fail to notice. But he also says some of these storms in our lives are necessary.

In this book, Graham talks about supernatural events, about political events, even the environment and global warning. He speaks about how it's all biblical--leading up to Christ's return. He even talked about 9/11. He said "these are the kinds of storms that drop from the skies when the warning signals are ignored". But he made note of the response...He says it brought Americans to their knees.

Graham even made mention of social networking sites like Facebook. He says these sites just add to the cult of self.

I loved one quote, and I wrote it down. He says, "No life is without its own set of problems. Jesus never promised our paths would smooth." This is so true. So many times we as Christians think we are immune to the storms of life. Then we get devastating news and wonder why something so tragic could happen to us. Billy Graham writes, "The Bible assures us that God will abolish evil when Christ returns."

This book was very enlightening. I guess I never thought much about how the things in life, the events, and thought about how much they actually mean. This book is a very hard read, and was difficult for me to get through it. But if you are interested in end times prophecy, I would recommend this book to you. Billy Graham is reknowned throughout the world, and I love the way he brings recent, relevent examples into this book. But this is not a book to just read for leisure, as it will take you a while to get through it...at least it did me.

Monday, September 27, 2010

Scars: An Amazing Endtime Prophecy Novel

I just finished the book Scars: An Amazing Endtime Prophecy Novel. The book was provided to me by the author, Patience Prence. It's about a teen girl, living in the tribulation. The book begins already in the Tribulation. Things are changing quickly, and she never gets to live out her childhood because of the changes. There are natural disasters that kill thousands. Then the man, who the Bible calls the Anti-Christ, comes on the scene. Many are deceived, but Becky decides to do her research. She buys a Bible on the Internet, and learns about the Saviour, Jesus Christ. She becomes a Christian, but because she purchased the Bible on the Internet, the purchase wasn't secret. That purchase got her father and brother kidnapped...and turned her Mother against her. She eventually gets turned over to the enemy because of her faith. I got very close to Becky in this book, and the last two chapters, I found myself crying for Becky. When she was scared, I found myself scared for her. When she was brave, I was cheering along with her.

There are a few questions I still have about the book after finishing it. The book never mentions what Christians call the Rapture. Becky never makes mention to people disappearing. So, getting into the book, I was thinking that maybe this book was written with the belief that the Rapture happens during the tribulation. But Becky never makes reference to other Christians in the area.. there were a few others in court with her. So, I'm not sure if the rapture happened before the book began, or if it happened after the end of the book. Also, I would have liked some closure on what happened to Becky's Dad and brother...and even toward the end her mother. But this was Becky's story, so I can understand why this information wasn't in this book. Because Becky didn't know what happened to them, neither did we.

This book was very descriptive. I personally don't care what color the bedstand is, or the ceiling for that matter. I'm not really into description. I like the storyline more. So that was a distraction for me in this book. For those of you who like description, you would like this book.

Overall, I think this would be a great book for a teenager or young adult. It's not very long, but it's long enough for you to begin to relate to the character. Me personally, I began to hurt along with her..and feel sad for her. But at the end, all the pain pays off.

Friday, September 17, 2010

The Great City of Chattanooga

Sunset Rock

Some things I love about Chattanooga, are many times not even on a tourist's radar... So, I thought I would share my loves in hopes that the next time you come for a visit, that you visit like a local!

Food: My favorite restaurants are:
Tony's Pasta Shop and Trattoria, located in the art district in downtown Chattanooga.
Rain Thai Bistro on Lee Highway. Rain has wonderful lunch prices, with a wide variety of entrees for only $6!

Places to See:
The Passage, located next to the Aquarium. Water flowing down stairs that signifies the Trail of Tears.
The Riverwalk-- miles and miles of beauty and exercise
The Walnut Street Bridge. THis is a pedestrian bridge where you will find lots of exercisers in the mornings and evenings. It also offers great views.
Point Park on Lookout Mountain. $3 to get in and the views are so worth it...IF you feel a little adventerous, take a hike from there to Sunset Rock, which is beautiful at, you guessed it, sunset :)
Rock City. Yes this is a tourist place, but I still love it just the same
Cloudland Canyon State Park. This is a short trip down I-59 into North Georgia, but so worth the trip. Take your camera, and plenty of water.

There are more places to see, but this is all I can think of off the top of my head. I will update more later. I've lived here for two years, and it's such a beautiful place, I want to share it with everyone.

Monday, September 13, 2010

I'm Not Ma'am

On December 11th, I will be another dreaded year older...I'll be 32. While I am in my 30s...and only 8 years away from the dreaded 40, I still at many times think of myself as a young woman. I'm not married, although I would like to be, and I don't have children, although I would like them. (So if anyone knows a nice, Christian man in their late 20s or in their 30s, introduce me!--and i'm not kidding!) The point is, many times I don't feel like a grown up. And I cannot get used to people calling me a woman, a lady, Ms. Tidmore, or "Ma'am!" The other day, a young man, I'm guessing a college student, was moving into my apartment building, and I asked him a question. He responded by saying "No Ma'am." I wanted to cry! I don't feel old enough for college students to be calling me ma'am! Today, I logged onto facebook, to find that a friend of mine was complementing my photography...which really made me feel good. But she said "A 'lady' in my church"...I just can't get used to not being called a "girl". I guess I just don't want to grow up!

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The Four Seasons: Spring, Summer, FOOTBALL, and Winter

It's the best season of the year--Football season! I'm from Alabama, and in Alabama, football is more than a game, it's a religion! Not only on the college level, but the high school level as well. In my hometown, everyone bleeds green...for the Gordo Greenwave. And on Friday night, it's not a question of what you're doing. Everyone goes to the game.
When it comes to college football, it's pretty much a split. Alabamians either chant "Roll Tide" or "War Eagle".
Tonight, I'm sitting here watching the Crimson Tide dominate Penn State. Just a few years ago, it would have been a much different outcome. The Tide has had some rough years, but I'm not a fair weather fan. I've stuck with my team. And during the Nick Saban era, Alabama has returned to greatness! We celebrated a National Championship last year.

So, Crimson is definitely my color! And if you happen by my apartment during a game, you will probably here a few "Roll Tide's" and a few "Rammer Jammer's"! Probably not what all the Tennesseans around me want to hear! I've shouted a few tonight!

Seems fitting on what would have been the Bear's 97th birthday. Happy Birthday, Bear Bryant.

"If you believe in yourself and have dedication and pride - and never quit - you'll be a winner. The price of victory is high but so are the rewards."--Bear Bryant

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Just a quick post this time, but I did want to follow up with my last post...I had a great turnout for our singles event... Now it seems kind of silly that I was worried about it. We will see how it goes from here on out.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Popularity Enters Adulthood

For those of you who say popularity is only a problem in high school, I would like to challenge that philosophy. I'm told all the time, people grow up and popularity doesn't matter anymore. But I live with unpopularity everyday. I'm 31, and I think I deal with it just as much as I did when I was 16, just in a different way. It all comes in the form of people not coming to events I plan.

Just before my best friend got married, I threw her a lingerie shower. I guess this was about 9 years ago. I invited so many people. But only the bride-to-be, her soon-to-be sister-in-law, and myself showed up. I will always believe if someone else had planned it, more people would have come...

This idea haunts me even today. A few weeks ago, I hosted a Spa party, and I invited 20 ladies. Only 3 showed up.

I am the leader of the singles group at my church. I use that term, "leader" loosely, because, number one: it's a new group,
and number two: I don't have many willing to take part in group activities. We have about 10 singles, which is awesome, since we have such a small church. I believe it's important for singles to hang out together, and befriend each other. Being single is hard, and the only people who understand just how hard it is are other singles. I'm not saying couples don't have it hard...but singles face totally different issues. So, it's important we support one another. Well, i've been planning events for months now...and usually only about 3 show up. I just wonder if popularity is playing a role. I'm not the "popular" one, or the "cool" one. I wonder if someone else in the group were to plan the same events on the same day if more people would show up.

I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that God gave me a heart for other singles. I have had this singles group on my heart for years--even before I became part of this church. I just pray everyday, asking God if someone else would be a better leader than me...better at getting others involved.

So yes, I believe popularity, or the lack thereof is a big problem today. This has never been an issue for me. I've always been able to befriend everyone--hang out with anybody. So, this is an issue that leaves me perplexed! I just wish folks would get over it and look at others as someone different from them, and therefore someone you might be able to learn something from...and someone that might make their life better by allowing that person into it.

Thursday, August 12, 2010

The Lord's Blessings

This week, I checked my checking account, only to find that I had severely over-spent this month. I moved, so there were lots of unexpected expenses. Plus, I had a my "lil' sis" come to visit for a week, and of course spent more money than I should have. But I loved every minute with her.

Looking at my checking account scared me. I also realized I was in dire need of an oil change and tire rotation on my car. So, reluctantly, I got in the car and drove to Ford this morning to get those things done. I just decided if needed, I would put the fee on my credit card and pay it off later.

After the car got finished, they checked my advantage card, and lo and behold, I had a free oil change! Because using that credit would require changing all the paperwork, the guys in the office decided to give me the tire rotation for free as well!

So, Thank you, Lord, for blessing me today. The cost would have been about $50, and I really couldn't afford it right now. Jesus comes through when we least expect it!!!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

A Wonderful Place

It's one of my favorite places, and this year Camp SAM turns 25! Watch this video and tell me what you think about this place that allows kids battling cancer to just be kids!

CAMP Smile A Mile

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Running thru the Rain

I got this story in my email this week...and thought I would share. It's such a good reminder to enjoy the little things in life and trust God.

> A little girl had been shopping with her Mom in Target. She must have
> been 6 years old, this beautiful red haired,
> freckle faced image of innocence. It was pouring outside. The kind of
> rain that gushes over the top ofrain gutters, so much in a hurry to hit
> the earth it has no time to flow down the spout. We all stood there
> under the awning and just inside the door of the Target.
> We waited, some patiently, others irritated because nature messed up
> their hurried day. I am always mesmerized by rainfall. I got lost in the
> sound and sight of the heavens washing away the dirt and dust of the
> world. Memories of running, splashing so carefree as a child came
> pouring in as a welcome reprieve from the worries of my day.
> The little voice was so sweet as it broke the hypnotic trance we were
> all caught in 'Mom let's run through the rain,'
> she said. 'What?' Mom asked.
> 'Let's run through the rain!' She repeated
> 'No, honey. We'll wait until it slows down a bit,' Mom replied.
> This young child waited about another minute and repeated: 'Mom, let's
> run through the rain,'
> 'We'll get soaked if we do,' Mom said.
> 'No, we won't, Mom.. That's not what you said this morning,' the young
> girl said as she tugged at her Mom's arm
> This morning? When did I say we could run through the rain and not get
> wet?
> 'Don't you remember? When you were talking to Daddy about his cancer,
> you said, 'If God can get us through this, he can get us through
> anything!'
> The entire crowd stopped dead silent. I swear you couldn't hear anything
> but the rain. We all stood silently... No one came or left in the next
> few minutes...Mom paused and thought for a moment about what she would
> say. Now some would laugh it off and scold her for being silly. Some
> might even ignore what was said. But this was a moment of affirmation in
> a young child's life.. A time when innocent trust can be nurtured so
> that it will bloom into faith.
> 'Honey, you are absolutely right. Let's run through the rain. If GOD
> let's us get wet, well maybe we just needed
> washing,' Mom said.
> Then off they ran. We all stood watching, smiling and laughing as they
> darted past the cars and yes, through the
> puddles. They held their shopping bags over their heads just in case.
> They got soaked. But they were followed by a few who screamed and
> laughed like children all the way to their cars.
> And yes, I did.. I ran. I got wet. I needed washing.
> Circumstances or people can take away your material possessions, they
> can take away your money, and they can take away your health. But no one
> can ever take away your precious memories....So, don't forget to make
> time and take the opportunities to make memories everyday. To everything
> there is a season and a time to every purpose under heaven. I HOPE YOU

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Don't Bash the President

Our country is in turmoil. The unemployment rate is high, folks have lost their homes, many are struggling to make ends meet. President Barack Obama inherited America's problems when he became the leader of our country (He didn't create them, remember?). Over the last year and a half, the President has worked to fix a lot of our mess. Passing the health care bill was a huge step in the right direction. If you don't agree with health care reform, then you've never been in a place where someone you love, or yourself, was very sick and could not get help because you didn't have health insurance. He's also helped create thousands of jobs with the stimulus program. And our country is turning around.(I don't care if you agree with these statements or not).

I didn't vote for President Obama...I didn't even like him while he was running. But I do think he's doing pretty good with what he was given. And no I'm not a democrat. I'm an independent, who votes for the right candidate, not a party. I say all of this because we are in the midst of another election period right now. And it appalls me that there are candidates using their platform to bash the President. We should be voting for candidates who are willing to work together with the President to make a better America...not for those who want to work against him in everything he does. I don't care who the President is! He deserves respect!

There is a candidate in Tennessee running for Congress. Her name is Robin Smith, and her ad simply says "vote for me and I will work against the president". Click here to see ad. How is that helping America? Americans voted President Obama into office and he deserves a chance to turn things around.

A Georgia candidate for Congress, Jody Hice, used a hammer and sickle symbol on a billboard, which is the symbol for communism, when referring to the President. This is NOT acceptable.

If you vote for either of these candidates, or any other candidate that talks about going against the President on everything, then this country will remain the place it is today--people without work, wall street falling apart, foreclosures at an all-time high. You need to vote for people who are willing to work together to make this country the great place we know it can be. And that doesn't mean always agreeing with President Obama. It means talking things through and coming to decisions together, as a team. Please vote wisely this year. It could mean a better America, or the worse you've ever seen.

Thursday, July 08, 2010

The world is always better with friends

Today, I learned a big lesson. I can't do life without friends. Today, severe pain shot through my leg...so bad I nearly passed out. I struggled to get to my phone. But with a call, I had a friend coming to pick me up to take me to the emergency room. She was only able to stay a couple hours, but a little while later, another friend came to the ER, sat with me, then brought me to her house to spend the night. What would I have done without these wonderful ladies? I've lived without local friends before, but today I learned I never want to do life alone again. Turns out I have a pulled hamstring. I'm now on some powerful pain killers. THank you, Lord, for blessing me with people like Dawn and Stephanie...

Wednesday, July 07, 2010

Thank You!!!!

It always amazes me when people tell me they read my blog. I mean, these are just my thoughts and ramblings that sometimes I just have to talk about. This is a great outlet for me. Over the last week, I have gotten 3 comments, saying they read my blog! And just in the last couple of weeks, my known followers increased from 2 to 7! It's amazing. I just want to say "Thank You" for reading! If you read and haven't become a follower of my page, please do so! I love to see who is reading! And I will try to be better about updating more often!

Monday, June 28, 2010

Going with your gut

The coolest thing happened this week. I was just sitting there, minding my own business, and out of the blue, a manager at a news station out west emailed me asking if I were interested in coming to work. Now, before that email, I hadn't even thought about moving. I hadn't sent any resumes, so it was just out of the blue! Undoubtedly one of my co-workers had dropped my name in conversation with someone else (Thanks, by the way...huge compliment!) Once I got that email, for a few days, my world turned upside down. The what-if's started going through my head, and the more I thought about it, the more it sounded like a wonderful adventure I wanted to be a part of.

Right now, thought, the timing is off. I am so close to family right now, and my grandmother is battling cancer. I just didn't feel right going so far away from her. Plus, I've started over every two years...just got to wondering if I wanted to do that again right now. Usually I have a few months to prepare for it, but this time, it was just dropped in my lap. I also like the people I work with...and that's a rare gem, I have learned!

So, after lots and lots of thought and prayer, I am going with my gut feeling, and staying in Chattanooga. I am hoping that my decision pays off. I am also hoping that this manager will remember me if ever a position opens back up and he needs a news producer.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

I Review For The Tyndale Blog Network

I have begun to review books, and I just finished my first on the list. Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a copy of "The Witness" by Josh McDowell, for my review. It was a very different book from the genre that I usually read, but I couldn't put it down. I read it in four days, only reluctantly putting it down to sleep or to work. The book is a murder/suspense novel. It begins with a crazy scene of murder, that you might only find in a movie. The lead character, Marwin Accad, is forced into hiding, and into running from city to city, because not only are assassins after him, but so are the police. But you learn, not only is he running from those who are after him, he is running from God. The funny thing is, God starts showing up in the oddest places, showing Marwin that he can't do it alone.

I do have to say, I didn't care for how the book ends. It leaves you with many questions as to what may have happened next. I would have liked the author to wrap it up a bit better. But overall, a very good book. Would love to see a sequel to "The Witness

Sunday, May 30, 2010

LOST Explained--This is my take

Favorite Quote of LOST finale: Christian Shephard to Jack: "The most important part of your life was the time you spent with these people. That's why all of you are here. Nobody does it alone, Jack. You needed all of them, and they needed you." Jack: "For what?" Christian: "To remember., and to let go."
Okay, so the island was real. That was all of their real experiences. But the life this season was showing as if the plane didn't crash was the characters in a holding place--what some would think of as purgatory. They have to go there until they can remember what happened to them and how they died. Some died earlier, and some later. But all had to come into play as each character remembered. When JAck finally remembered what had happened to him, he got to go to heaven. The others are left up to interpretation, but I believe some of them were already in heaven--the ones who had already remembered. They were just helping the others get there.
Benjamin Linus had sinned, so he had some stuff to work out before he could go, that is why he didn't go in the church...and if you noticed, Michael wasn't there either. He was stuck on the island...he was the whispers you could here sometimes.

Loved the ending...Jack died exactly how and where he woke up on the island the very first episode...In the bamboo forest, he woke up one eye opened...he died one eye closed. Nice touch adding vincent the dog (Walt's dog) to make sure JAck wasn't alone when he died.

That seems to be a resounding theme throughout LOST...that you can't do life alone. You need people to do life with you. My favorite quote of this finale: Christian Shephard to Jack: The most important part of your life was the time you spent with these people. That's why all of you are here. Nobody does it alone, Jack. You needed all of them, and they needed you. Jack: For what? Christian: To remember., and to let go.

And last week a very similar quote by Jacob to Jack: Jacob: "I didn't pluck any of you out of a happy existence. You were all flawed. I chose you because you were all like me. You were all alone. You were all looking for something you couldn't find out there. I chose you because you needed this place as much as it needed you."

All of them were trying to do life alone and on their own.--and they were terribly unhappy. The island, as bad as it was, helped them really live and love.

Jack, who had always kinda been in the shadow of his father, took charge on the island...and he became the symbol of all that was good--to fight off evil(the black smoke and the man in black who had taken over John Locke's body)...and good always wins in the end. He had to learn how to defeat evil--and he did...the island itself was keeping the evil invincible.

Now that I understand what actually happened, I loved the finale. I want to go back and watch it again. No, I don't believe in pergutory--but I think this worked in this show...which was all make-believe, anyway.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Cruise to the Bahamas

Valerie and I just got home from a cruise to the Bahamas...and I wrote down a summary of each day...thought you might enjoy reading about it!

Val and I left Chattanooga at 3am to drive to Jacksonville. When we got to the terminal, we felt like we were being herded like cattle...one linie after another--five lines before we were able to board. Then we couldn't get into our stateroom until 1:30. I had so many carry-ons! We had lunch on the Lido deck, then at 1:30, we went to our room for a nap. We figured the cruise didn't really start until 4 anyway, and we were tired! At four, we went to a required safety meeting where were were taught where to go if the ship is sinking, how to put on a life jacket, and where our rafts are located. I don't know about you, but if the boat is sinking, I'm getting my life vest and heading straight to the raft--not the muster station!

We watched the boat set sail, then were entered to win free spa stuff...didn't win, but it was still fun. We explored a bit, went to dinner, where I ate a wonderful tomato soup, a cesar salad, chicken pasta, and Chocolate Melting Cake (yum!). THen Val went to bed. I went to the opening show--a comedy show and dancing, then I explored a bit...Went to the casino and lost $20...Got in bed around 12:30am.

The First day of the cruise I had a tough time with sea sickness. Wasn't nauseaus, but I was dizzy. You could really feel the boat rocking.

Fun day at sea! Woke up at 9a, to find Valerie had been up and already been to the gym for a workout! The beds were so comfy! WE had breakfast delivered to our stateroom, then headed to the pool for a fun-filled day in the sun. One problem: There was no sun! It was overcast-and cold! So we laid out by the pool until lunch, then ate caribbean food in the coconut grill. It was delicioius! We went back to the pool, long enough to watch the "Hairy Chest Competition". It was so funny! Then we went to a dance class. Valerie decided to watch, and she took plenty of pictures of me dancing the salsa! WEnt to a shopping seminar, then to our rooms to ready for formal ight. Got all dressed up--ate stuffed mushrooms, strawberry bisque, lobster tail and shrimp, with a baked potato and a cherry dessert. WE got our pictures taklen several times--there were some really pretty ones, but we didn't buy them. Then we went to the show--all about 80s music, clothes, and hair! Then we went to bed--Half Moon Cay tomorrow!

Hmm...How do I describe this day? Absolutely Marvelous! Today, Val and I got up at 7am. WE got ready, ate breakfast on the Lido deck--eggs, bacon, sausage, fruit, toast, bagels, and orage juice. And by 8:30am, we were on the tender boat, and on our way to Half Moon Cay. It is so beautiful! The water looks like a swimming pool. IT's aqua blue and you can see everything! IT's amazing! You get 20 feet deep and you can still see the bottom clearly. And the water is very salty--burns your eyes so bad, and it doesn't taste very good, either! The sand throughout the island is fune, soft sand that feels wonderful to your feet! We started our day on the island by getting on another boat and heading snorkeling. We went way off the island to a reef, and I saw lots of beautiful fish--blue, yellow, multicolor--we also saw different types of coral--one lady says she saw a sea turtle! It took a few minutes to figure out snorkeling. I had a hard time breathing and getting used to the waves. But once I got it, I had a great time! We also met Alex and Emily during this trip--friends for the rest of the cruise. After snorkeling, we came back to the island and laid on the beach for hours! We ate lunch, then went back to the beach. We were on the island, in the sun, for 8 hours--and you could look at me and tell! I was so red, despite wearing spf30 sunblock all day!
That evening I attended another dance class--this time it was disco dancing...saw Alex and emily there. THen we went to bed.

we woke up this morning and we were in Nassau! My first impression was how wonderful it was. But then we got off the boat! THere were all types of people, harrassing cruisers, trying to sell tours, taxis, scooters, and anything else you can think of. BUt we got away from the terminal and all was right with the world again.
We went to all kinds of stores, and the famous straw market. The straw market held beautiful hats and handbags, all woven by those selling them. One lady even let me take her picture while she worked. We ate lunch on the ship, then went back out. We rode a Jitney(bus) to cable beach and that was quite the experience! You almost have to have a death wish! But we made it in one piece, and it only cost $1.25 each way! The water at cable beach wasn't as nice as what we saw at Half MOon Cay. There was lots of seaweed. We didn't stay long. We went back downtown and shopped more. Then we went to the Queen's Staircase and met a guy who gave us a tour of sorts. He told us the history of the Queen's staircase. It has 65 steps--one for each year Queen Victoria reigned. We also learned that Bahamians were slaves to England. And when slavery was abolished, the Queen gave the slaves the islands and helped them make lives for themselves. All children learn christianity in school...and they even have a hotel/tourism class, since that's their main industry. The tour guy also showed us Fort Fincastle and a beautiful view. We then went back to the boat--man, was I tired! WE got back around 6, so it was a 10 hour day and my feet hurt so bad!

We went to dinner and sat in Putu and Ntando's section for a third night. I ordered Lobster Bisque and fried shrimp and grouper with a marmalade sauce. Then, we went to a juggling show and comedy act...so funny! I laughed so hard, I hurt!

As I went to join the deck party, it started raining. But it didn't last long. THere was a live band...so fun... I danced the electric slide, the macarena, the YMCA, the Chicken Dance, and any other group dance you can think of. Valerie didn't go with me to the party...she went to bed early. I made it to sleep about midnight.


Today is the last day of the cruise. I'm sad it's over, but so glad I got the opportunity to come! We had so much fun! This day, I was so tired I didn't wake up til about 9:30. We went and ate breakfast, then we had to go to a mandatory embarkation meeting, where Trevor, our cruise director, explained the provess for getting off the boat. Then it was time for some fun in the sun. WE headed out to the Lido deck and grabbed a couple of lawn chairs. OUr chairs were close to the stage, and that was wonderful! We got to hear the band playu and see all the entertainment. We played a game of tv theme song trivia, we watched a man carve a sculpture out of ice, and all kinds of stuff. I was in and out of the pool a couple of times--which by the way was salt water! WE ate lunch about 1:30--mongolian food--it was wonderful! THen at 2:15, it was time for the country line dancing class! Alex and emily were there again. I got their information so we can stay in touch on facebook. Then I went back out for more fun in the sun. Valerie decided to go shopping. WE met back in the room about 5p and then headed to the farewell party. There was music, dancing, and free drinks. Then we got ready for dinner. It was our last night with Putu and Ntando. Sad. I got mushroom creme soup, crab cake, and shrimp, scallop, and callamari pasta. I picked out the calamari(yuck). But the food was great...and for dessert? Chocolate melting cake, of course! THe show tonight was called "Mambo" then back to our rooms to pack and back to the Palace theatre for another comedfy show. WE were in bed around midnight.

The next morning, we got in the car and headed home. Vacation is over, but the memories will last a lifetime.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

An Irish Blessing

I found this Irish Blessing the morning, and I absolutely love it. I wish this for all of you:

May the raindrops fall lightly on your brow.
May the soft winds freshen your spirit.
May the sunshine brighten your heart
May the burdens of the day rest lightly upon you.
And may God enfold you in the mantle of His love.

Happy St. Patrick's Day, everyone!

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

The Tortoise and the Hare

I wrote this for an assignment, but I still wanted to share...I believe it's very true:

We all know the children’s fable about the tortoise and the hare. We learn at the end “slow and steady wins the race.” In life, many of us feel like we’re in a race. It’s the race called life. Some are looking to get to the top of the ladder before someone else does. Others are just working toward a goal they set for themselves.
I think people can be compared to the tortoise and the hare. Some people are tortoises. These people work hard, they don’t cut corners, and they keep on moving until they get to their goals in life. Sometimes it doesn’t happen as quickly as one would like. There are hills to climb, and obstacles to overcome. But tortoises keep putting one foot in front of the other, looking toward the finish line.
There are others, however, who are hares. Hares work towards the goal for a while, but then they forget what they’re trying to accomplish. They lose sight of the goal, the finish line. They say to themselves, “I’m not in a hurry. I’ve got plenty of time.” Then time runs out.
As Christians, our goal should be to live for the Lord and serve Him. Our ultimate goal is Heaven. In Philippians 3:14, Paul writes, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” So, make goals, and keep working toward them. You will be rewarded.

Friday, February 05, 2010

Rain, Wash My Sorrows Away

Tonight, it's raining. It's been raining all day. The weather--it seems to match my mood. Just as the sky seems to be crying, so are my heart and soul.
I have deep secrets, that only God and the walls of my bedroom know. I cry out to God frequently, asking Him for answers.

All day at work today, I've struggled. I'm so tired, and that alone makes me emotional. I laid in bed until noon today, because my body just seems like it had no energy. I just wanted to keep my eyes shut and forget about the day ahead. But I have to work. So I went. But the only good things that came out of the day were that I actually got to take an hour for lunch. I went alone, which was probably a good thing, considering my bad mood. The second good thing? That my show was flawless.

Then I got in the car, and before I could even get out of the parking lot, I was sobbing. I put in a worship c-d, third day...and the song "Give Me a Revelation" started through the speakers of the car. And I just started crying out to God, my creator. Just crying out to Him, asking him to help me have the desires of my heart.
Then when I got home, I stood out in the rain, hoping it could wash my sorrows away.

The song "give me a revelation" by third day is exactly how I feel right now. I need a revelation. I feel like I'm alone, I'm broken...but I'm trying to find my way. Many times, though, I feel so lost. It's like I wrote this song, cause the whole song is EXACTLY how I feel.

When I was a kid, and my mom was making me do something I didn't want to do, I would say, "But that's not fair." She would always reply, "Life's not fair." I never realized the truth in that statement, until recently. Life's Not Fair!

Please pray for me, as I try and do this thing we call "Life".
JESUS--I need you more than ever right now. I've got nothing without you.

Saturday, January 09, 2010

I Miss You, My Dear Brother

Today it has been 13 years since you went home to Jesus. It seems like a lifetime ago, but at the same time, it seems like it was just yesterday. You've been on my mind a lot, lately. You've been in my dreams. In some of those dreams, we're still teenagers.. But in some of those dreams, I've been blessed with sort of a glimpse of you...who you might be now. I cherish those dreams. God blessed me with the best brother a girl could have. Even though you were my little brother, you always acted so protective like a big brother. We shared lots of laughs and many sorrows. Sometimes I still wish I could just head to your room and talk about our day...about the struggles, about the joys...we used to to that all the time. I don't know why you were taken from this world at the young age of 15. But I do know I am proud to have known you...proud to have called you my brother. I miss you, Robbie. I still hold you in my heart.

"I Carry You in My Heart"
E.E. Cummings
(an excerpt)
Here is the deepest secret no one knows.
Here is the root of the root... and the bud of the bud...
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life... which grows higher than the soul can hope... or mind can hide.
It is the wonder that's keeping the stars apart.
I carry your heart. I carry it in my heart.