stepping onto new path

“stepping onto a brand new path is difficult, but not more difficult than remaining in a situation that is not nurturing to the whole woman.” – maya angelou.

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The 4th of July: Lessons My Dad the Marine Taught Me

Kate Kresse:

Happy 4th of July: Lessons my dad the Marine taught me

Originally posted on Believe Anyway:

The 4th of July was a big deal in my family. Before breakfast we would “put the flag up”-the whole family would go out to the front yard, we would put up the flag and salute. (This morning I got up early and put our flag up and saluted the heavens to greet my dad). Dad would talk about the importance and responsibilities of freedom. He lived those lessons every single day. He taught us to listen with a critical, not cynical ear. Right before the 4th he would take us shopping and let each of us get something red white and blue to wear. Such a sweet tradition. He spent 2 years in the Marines before marrying my mom. He definitely had street cred! The 4th of July is special to me because of the lessons dad taught me. It is the day when I miss him the most…

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What are you dreaming of today?


I have been feeling reflective. Of course, as my regular tutoring schedule evolves into my summer tutoring schedule, I often do feel reflective. But this year I have been feeling even more reflective than usual. My birthday is in the summer. This year will be one of those milestone birthdays. So it is fitting that I am taking stock of my life.

I think back on what my hopes and dreams were over the years, and ponder about what they are/should be now. When I was little, I planned to be a writer and a teacher. When I got to college, I planned to become a high school English teacher. However, once I was at college, I decided to major in business. Women were making new inroads in the business world, and I was SO excited about being part of that.

I ended up working in the computer industry for  years, (and I really loved it) and then went back to school to earn my MBA. After that, I worked in the computer industry again, but left that behind to be home for my children. One of my children died in infancy, and I became very determined not to miss a minute of my son’s childhood.

Once he was launched into college, I began to tutor. When he was a baby I published my 1st book. When he was in college, I started my blog. So there you go, a teacher and a writer. At all the aforementioned stages of my life, it felt like a good fit. But as I ponder the next part of my life, I am trying to pray on things and ponder. I do not just want to decide the next chapters on an ad hoc basis. I seek guidance from my Captain, my Shepherd. He knows my heart and gifts better than anyone.


My heart is open. My mind is brimming with ideas. I am praying for guidance. Are you at a watershed time in your life. Are you wondering if you need to make some changes? I am considering what the next phase of my life should include. I ask myself “what are my dreams”? What are yours? What is your heart’s desire ~ have you prayed about it?

I hope your week is going well!





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The greatest gifts we ever received


Today is a special day for my husband and me. You see, today marks the anniversary of one of our VERY favorite days. 26 years ago, our beloved son was born. A remarkable woman, his birth mother, chose us to be his parents. What a remarkable and selfless act she did, and she gave us the greatest gift ever.

Every day he blesses our lives. He is a remarkable guy. We have seen him grow and change. He has learned and grown. He has overcome difficulties and challenges. He searches for God’s purpose and message in and for his life.

26 years of hugs and exchanging “I love yous”…..26 years of connecting, exchanging ideas and laughter. 26 years of being family…..PRICELESS!

So today, we will celebrate him. Sunday we will celebrate Father’s Day. My husband has said many times that our son was the best Father’s Day gift ever….

My guys are a gift in my life. I am so blessed and ever so grateful.

Our son is 26. How the years have flown. Happy birthday to you, my darling son. I love you.




Posted in Family Life and Issues, Heartwarming or humorous stories | Tagged | 3 Comments

Even a poor tailor is entitled to some happiness!

If you have seen “Fiddler on the Roof” you may recognize the title of this blog post as a line from the movie. It was said by Tevye’s oldest daughter Tseitel’s  true love Motel (pronounced “mottle”)Kamzoil the tailor.

Now why am I quoting that today? I am quoting it because our hearts do yearn for happiness and joy. Granted, financial success or worldly success is not what I am really writing about. I am writing about deeper happiness.

For my husband, and for me, true happiness comes from our faith, and from using our talents to make the world a better place. I would not trade our lives for the lives of the rich and famous. Life can and does bring many ups and downs. There are mountain-top days of supreme joy. There are times of loss and suffering. But we are in it for the long haul.

You may encounter people in your lives who “lord it over” those around them, or act as though they think you are beneath them. Here is what I have to say about that sort of attitude. It is what my mom has always said. “Feel sorry for them”. You see, if people look down on you, check yourself against God’s exhortations. Are you on His path? Are you using your talents? Are you loving and giving? If not, change it. If so, then relax. He is your director. It is His commands you follow. The timing of your blessings, challenges, and setbacks are part of your life’s tapestry.

Are the lord-it-overs speaking in truth? How do you know? Seek the counsel of those who are wise. They can help you keep things in perspective, and not be tossed about by the court of public opinion.

If you need to improve, do so. If you are spending your life the way God wants you to spend it, then you are on your right path. Some people will understand your path, and some will not. Do NOT let it deter you! If you can do even more to make the world better, then try to do so!

There is joy right in front of you. Laugh a little today ~ and know that each day there is a pocketful of joy for you.

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My little girl/big girl books

I grew up in Minnesota. As a result, I certainly read the Little House series of books. My grandpa taught in a one-room schoolhouse when he was a young man in Iowa. So stories of Laura’s school gave me an extra connection to him. My family was close-knit, and so was Laura’s.

But I have to say my hands-down favorite when I was in 2nd grade through junior high was the Betsy-Tacy series by the wonderful Maud Hart Lovelace. I lived in small town MN when I fell in love with the books, and imagined the town of Deep Valley to actually be my town. My two closest friends (Brenda and Mary) and I loved the books. We regularly pretended to be Betsy Tacy and Tib. I was ALWAYS Betsy. the other two traded being Tacy and Tib. they were both actually much more like Tacy than Tib, at least in those days.

Summertime makes me think of those carefree times with my little girlfriends. It makes me think of the stories we created, and the mini-picnics and let’s pretend times we had.

When I began blogging, I happened upon a blogger (Kathy) in TX who knows and loves these books as well. Wonder of wonders there is a Betsy Tacy Society. Well, of course there is!! She writes about it here, so check it out. 
I don’t know why the hyperlink doesn’t appear!


Anyway, Kathy posted an article on her blog . It is from the Inland Valley Daily Bulletin. For fans of the series, there is a picture of the Friendship Bench. It is in Claremont, CA. that is where Maud Hart Lovelace spent the last 26 years of her life.

So if you are in the mood for sweet books this summer, try the Betsy Tacy series.



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Do you feel like you are drowning?

Do you hit a point now and then when you feel like you are swimming in a stormy sea, with no dock or safe spot in sight? I think everyone feels that way at some point; we get worn out and worn down. He always lifts us up.

Sometimes just knowing that He is there to lift you up helps you to re-focus. There is no need to panic. His hand is beneath your foot. His arm is around you. Are you overwhelmed? Are there more things on your Things To Do List than there are hours in your day? I am here to tell you that you can chip away at that list.

I know you are overwhelmed. Believe me, I know the feeling. I tell my students to breathe, just breathe when they are looking at a math problem and feel like a deer in the headlights. Then I say, “think. what do you know from how the question is asked… what are the hints and hooks?

We can do the same thing with our lengthy lists. The best way to keep perspective in our daily tasks is to begin with prayer. Invite Jesus to walk with you in your tasks/chores/work. By doing that we remind ourselves that we do NOT shoulder our burdens alone.

He will see us through the storms and rejoice with us during the rainbow times. Are you discouraged and feel like you can’t cope?

Believe anyway.

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