When You Have To…Make it An Adventure

When you have to go to Fl for a memorial, stay in a place you’ve never been but want to explore.

When you have to go, but a hurricane is barreling in, drive on down to The Keys and stay a night in comfort, away from the howling wind.

We he original Mrs. Mac’s, on Key Largo, has the most amazing key lime pie!

When it’s raining in paradise, make a drive to a fun dive and remember the sunset from yesterday.

When the dockside you want isn’t open and other places are too full or the hours are funky, just stop searching and try to enjoy the mediocre food you find at a cool dive.

Skippers food is decent,
but this blonde sundae is to die for!!
The key lime wasn’t so great.

When you get burned from the less than desired cuisine, have a do-over at the hotel convenience … sit out on the balcony and enjoy good food, good service, and sweet conversations with both the waitress and your love.

Gus’s Grille at the
Marriott in Key Largo is great!
The apple pie is delicious!
The key lime pie is scrumptious!

Feels like island time already.

When you have to plan for the days ahead and make some decisions, sit out by the island waters, under a tiki hut, in a bamboo chair swing, and let the coastal breeze wash all over you.

When you can’t bring your boys with you, and they made because they missed the adventure, you stop by a favorite to bring our home to them…and enjoy a slice yourself in the beautiful garden out back.

The Blonde Giraffe Key Lime Pie Factory has the absolute best key lime in the Keys!
Their expanded garden is a wonderful place to sit and take a breather,
and of course, to enjoy your slice!

When you have a free place, save a little money and head back to your original destination after the storm has blown through.

But take the long way through the swamps. It’s a prettier, more laid back experience.

Remember, you’re here for the adventure.

When you find your place to be amazing, but the beach town to be a little less than, go exploring nearby.

Remember, you’re here to make a memory.

When the days have been upside down and the busyness of life is taking a toll, take a little stroll along the seashore…or maybe two or three.

Along the way, stop and smell the roses, or take in the sight of the massive, gigantic trees, as it were.

The pictures just don’t quite do it justice.
The dimensions of this tree are mind-blowing!

When you see that the feasts prepared are good, but maybe not great, find the one suggested and let it remind you why you make a meal an event.

Matanza’s By the Bay is absolutely amazing!!
Be sure to get the salted caramel cheesecake and the pb pie…OH. MY!!

Amazing food, beautiful scenery, and fun conversations can bring the two of you back to younger days, deeper love and a stronger friendship.

When you have to go to a memorial, to be there for a friend, make it an adventure along the way.

Remember, it’s not always about the destination. Sometimes, it’s more about the time spent together and dreams fulfilled.

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things.

Philippians 4:8
Life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that
take our breath away.

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

Philippians 4:6-7

Happy Father’s Day

For so many, Father’s Day can come with a roller coaster of emotions. Every little girl or boy wishes to have a Daddy who loves them, protects them, guides them and defends them, but sometimes, that’s just not how life turns out. And sometimes, we’ve had to say goodbye long before we’re ready.

Sometimes, rolling into the Father’s Day weekend, every thing can be just fine, and then, all of a sudden, you just cloud up and rain. You feel grouchy and agitated for no particular reason. You just want to sleep a little more, isolate a little longer, or pull back a little deeper.

You can’t really put your finger on it at first, and then, the tears roll down like a drenching spring shower, and you realize you really do miss him. Maybe it’s because he was bigger than life, filling the void deep within. Or maybe he was too absent, dropping in whenever he felt suited him, but left you waiting by the door with your bags packed foe a visit way too many times to count.

Or maybe, it’s never a missing or actual longing for him because he was so broken that he tried to break you in ways only nightmares can speak of; yet, the tears come for what could’ve been, should’ve been, and for what never could have been imagined…

So, for all those whose Father’s Day weekend brings with it a bit more complicated feelings than what you’d hoped for, know there is a God who sees you, and He longs to fill that void, heal that brokenness and mend those wounds that you’ve tried desperately to hide or ignore.

He truly is the best Dad a girl could hope for!

A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families, He leads out the prisoners with singing…

Psalm 68:5-6

The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.

Zephaniah 3:17

Stop to Smell the Roses … and Count Them, Too.

I love roses. Really, I love flowers of almost any kind, but I’ve always been partial to roses, poppies and Gerber daisies.

Particularly, in red and hot pink… but these orange roses above are absolutely beautiful as well!!

And lately, I’ve been drawn to them more and more while being reminded of the phrase, “Stop to smell the roses.”

See, life has just been crazy busy lately. Busy in good ways, I suppose, but busy nonetheless. And I find my heart longing for a pause…

A pause for refreshment. A pause for reflection. A pause for renewal.

In everyday life, and especially, in the busy days of life, if you don’t have those pauses that bring refreshment, reflection and renewal, you might very well die. If you don’t die, you might drown in the heaviness around you. If you don’t drown, you might just grow resentful or depressed or burnt out.

You’ve got to pause. And you can’t pause with chaos in your head. You’ve got to pause away from the frantic. You’ve got to pause out of the panic. You’ve got to pause beyond the emotion and turmoil.

Get alone till you’re not alone anymore.

Sit still until you are still.

Breathe until you do breathe.

And then, inhale even deeper and smell those roses.

And then, take another minute to count them.

I promise you. If you’ll do this often, you’ll find you can face tomorrow a whole lot easier. … doesn’t mean tomorrow will be easier. It just means you’ll be a little stronger to face it.

I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty, and on Your wondrous works. Men shall speak of the might of Your awesome acts, and I will declare Your greatness. They shall utter the memory of Your great goodness, and shall sing of Your righteousness.

Psalm 145:5-7

Monday Musing on Tuesday

[*I do not own nor possess this pic.
Simple google search.]

Sometimes, you’re going to appear insane simply because you disagree… or at least, those in the River of conformity will say.

Sometimes, you’re going to sound crazy simply because you won’t comply… or at least, those in the push for an agenda will claim.

Sometimes, you’re going to wonder if you might be going nuts simply because you won’t say yes… or at least, those in the camp of trend, popularity and fame will declare.

Never allow those around you, and especially those against you, to convince you to jump off the cliff simply because every sheep on the planet has.

Make up your own mind.

Choose one Sovereign authority and follow Him.

His Truth is Absolute, and absolute Truth is, itself, exclusive.

Don’t lose it.

Don’t give it away.

And certainly, NEVER sell it to the highest bidder!

Truth is a precious gift. A precious commodity.

Hold on to it.

No matter the cost.

Then Jesus said to those Jews who believed Him, “If you abide in My word, you are My disciples indeed. And you shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free.”

John 8:31-32

Sometimes, Severing is Survival

Wow. Came across this song tonight and felt it tug on my soul.

Sometimes, severing a relationship, a friendship, a bond, a soul tie is a must.

If simply for survival…

For a life to once again thrive…

Unless, you’ve been to the point of silent pain, irrevocable destruction, or heart wrenching betrayal, this concept may seem foreign, even ludicrous to your ears.

But if you’ve cried yourself to sleep at night over words that were spoken against you…

If you’ve hidden your face in shame for deeds you never committed…

If you’ve stood in utter shock and amazement as one who promised to defend nonchalantly walked away,

or lied to your face,

or spilled slanderous gossip to cause heads to turn…

Then, you might begin to understand.

Sometimes, severing is simple survival.

And healing brings a heart to thrive again.

“Now I urge you, brethren, note those who cause divisions and offenses, contrary to the doctrine which you learned, and avoid them. For those who are such do not serve our Lord Jesus Christ, but their own belly, and by smooth words and flattering speech deceive the hearts of the simple.”

Romans 16:17-18 nkjv

“Do not be envious of evil men, nor desire to be with them; For their heart devises violence, and their lips talk of troublemaking.

Proverbs 24:1-2 nkjv

“We sever the tie of constraint; the leash that keeps us cohering to someone else’s plan rather than stepping out and realizing our true potential,” says Anthony of the impetus behind the single. (per ccmagazine.com)

*this song nor the quote, I do not own nor possess. Simple google search.

Monday Musings: Lessons Learned from 2020 and COVID-19

This has been quite a year for so many, and some would say this has been the absolute worse year ever, others would just say it stinks. I’m not sure there’s many at all who would say it’s been the best year; yet, maybe a three year old could have this perspective.

I will say it’s not been an amazingly wonderful year; it’s certainly had it’s challenges. However, I’d have to admit, it’s not been the worst year I’ve ever experienced.

Some of the worst years of my life were the year after my grandfather passed away, or the year we lost our first child after trying to conceive for 13 months, or the year I battled depression for a good half of the year… yeah, perspective always brings sunlight into the day.

Yet, there are some things this year of 2020 has taught me, and I thought I’d add it to my previous lists written near the beginning of all this

1. No matter what comes into my life, with God, I can walk through fire and I can stand in the rain…even if I have to grab the fire extinguisher and maybe a boat paddle!

2. Regardless what the days bring, you still have a choice to take another breath and move forward or clamp down on oxygen and lie down to die…I choose to breathe.

3. Despite the ugly, the tornadic, the chaos or the devastation, there is always hope, you just have to search for it…often times, it will be buried deep within.

4. Although, there may be confusion and uncertainty, if you know the right source from which to draw strength, you will have an endless supply…the Source is your key.

5. Life brings with it all kinds of ups and downs, doubts and fears, turmoil and challenges, questions and very few answers; yet, when you have a firm foundation, those specific answers may not always become easier to find, but the principles to these will be as sure anchor doe your soul.

6. Everyone needs a friend. Choosing to live out your life in isolation and avoidance is just a waste of life! … choose friends carefully, but choose them.

7. Having the courage to call out when you’re in trouble can be scary, and it definitely will make you more vulnerable than many of us like to be, but honestly, having moments of vulnerability brings humility back into our prideful flesh…and the courage it takes to ask makes us all that stronger.

8. Life has been known to bring us lemons, and sometimes, they can be the sourest ever grown, but if you’ll add a little sugar, you’ll find that lemonade to be quite refreshing… mind you, sometimes, you better add a lot!

9. No matter the clouds that brew overhead, always remember, there is a sun still shining. You may not see it today or tomorrow, but keep looking up, and it’s bound to eventually burst forth and warm up your skin.

10. If you believe there is no hope to ever be found, just stop in your tracks, take a deep breath, and place your hand to your heart to feel that beat…if there is still a rhythm, then there is always a glimmer of hope.

Let us hold fast the confession of our hope without wavering, for He who promised is faithful.

Hebrews 10:23

Therefore, with minds that are alert and fully sober, set your hope on the grace to be brought to you when Jesus Christ is revealed at his coming.

1 Peter 1:13

I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people…

Ephesians 1:18

Saturday’s Musings of Whimsical Fun Days

It’s been a bit since I sat down to write, and my fingers have aches for the pen and paper (or in this case, the keys of the keyboard). It seems life has become a bit of a whirlwind, and other things take priority over the enjoyment of my blogging right now. It kind of makes me sad, but more, I’d have to admit it makes me frustrated.

Writing is when my mind relaxes and my soul pours out to become a settled peace. Taking pen to paper, or even my fingertips to the keys, has a stabilizing, relaxing effect to my mind.

My thoughts can be swirling, tossing and turning, and I will pick up my pen and journal and begin writing until my heart is content. Sometimes, that only needs to be a half hour, yet, at other times, I might linger for hours, but when it has all been spent, my head is clear, and my breathing steady.

I do believer I may have to write for my own sanity, at least, for my own tranquility. Yet, these writings have to mean something as well.

They cannot be frivolous words written in a frantic that have no meaning, no strength. They have to come from deep in the soul, and first and foremost, they must be a nod to my Creator.

For after all, He placed the desire in my heart. He buried the longing deep within the recesses of my mind, and when I start penning, He is always there, as if my writing becomes a one-on-one conversation to His heart.

So today, I say, “Thank You.” Thank you to my Creator for breath, and life and grace. Thank you for joy, and peace and hope. All the things with which You overwhelm my life.

And thank You for this longing, this unquenchable desire to send You a love letter from the depths of my being. For without You, I am nothing.

But with You, I can conquer any fear, I can scale any mountain, I can slay any giant. For You within me are a mighty force with which to be reckoned. Thank You! ❤️

I will cry to God Most High, Who accomplishes all things on my behalf [for He completes my purpose in His plan].

Psalm 47:2 (AMP)

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Philippians 4:13

Monday Musings on a Whimsical Wednesday

What brings you JOY today?

What brings you JOY at Thanksgiving?

What brings you JOY on the “off days” when the holidays are through, and the workweek begins anew?

Can you even describe it?

Is it too lofty to grasp, or do the words overwhelm as your tongue struggles to form a word?

JOY cannot be found in circumstances or possessions.

It cannot be obtained in people or holidays or even in feelings.

It must be held deep within one’s very soul.

It must be allowed to live and breathe, as if it is a living being inside.

JOY can overwhelm and consume…

If you will simply let it.

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

Romans 15:13

You will show me the path of life;

In Your presence is fullness of joy;

At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 16:11

Whimsical Wednesday

Well, we celebrated another birthday this month… we have a 15 year old. I can hardly believe it! The years seems to fly right by, even when you’re totally engaged and holding on tight!

I wouldn’t want to go back the younger years, but I sure do miss them sometimes…

Those little hands holding onto my hair.

Those little feet learning to find their place in this world.

Those little smiles that light up the room when you walk in.

And those little squeals of laughter that just sound like liquid gold.

Yes, I hold every one of them tenderly and safely within my heart.

Yet, I look with excited anticipation to the years ahead.

These little boys are quickly growing into the finest of men, and I am so proud to be called their mom.

They make my heart swell with live and adoration. ❤️

But as for you, continue in what you have learned and have become convinced of, because you know those from whom you learned it, and how from infancy you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith in Christ Jesus.

2 Timothy 3:14-15

Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.

Proverbs 22:6

Friday Fun Day

Sometimes, to have a Friday Fun Day, you need to just sit by the rushing waters and let all the cares of this world wash away with the falls.

Sometimes, to find your peace, you’ll need to pause the calendar and step away.

Sometimes, to find your laughter again, you’ll need to take notes from the bubbling brooks and rustling trees.

Never get so lost in today’s “to do’s” that you forget about you.

Never get so consumed in the agendas that you forget those you value and love.

Now, go have yourself a Friday Fun Day! 💗

“He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul.”

Psalm 23:2-3a