Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Looking back...

I'm in Michigan now--Mt. Pleasant, Michigan, to be precise--and having a wonderful time. My days have been spent in the company of my son, his wife, and my little grandson, my sister and her husband (with whom I'm staying at the moment), my niece and nephew and their husband and girlfriend, respectively, and a dear friend with whom I share a long, meaningful, and sometimes downright ridiculous history.

Karen drove up to Mt. Pleasant yesterday and we spent hours laughing, catching up on our current lives, reminiscing about our former lives (we're both divorced and spent many years as single moms), and sharing nuggets of wisdom we've acquired since we last saw one another this past April. There's nothing like admitting to an old, dear friend just how silly we were in our younger (more brilliant) years, talking about the things we would have done differently if we had half the wits back then that we have now, and congratulating one another on how well our kids turned out despite our poverty, lack of parenting skills, and hectic schedules during their formative years.

Some things never change and for that I'll be eternally grateful.

Until the next time...

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

The march of seasons

Alaska's summer--though cool, colorful, and filled with abundant daylight--is far too short. Already the temperatures are dropping and soon we'll see the first snowfall of the winter. In the meantime, however, we're enjoying a glorious autumn and I'm going to take advantage of every sun-filled day. Yellow is the primary fall color up here; from our patio we can see the gold-tinged mountains behind us. One of these days I'll wake up to a dusting of snow on the peaks and before long, the entire mountain range will be blanketed in white.

I hope I never grow so accustomed to the glories of nature in this part of the world that I forget how lucky I am to be living, even temporarily, where towering mountains, icy blue glaciers, magnificent wildlife, and breathtaking water vistas are the norm.

Until the next time...

Friday, July 24, 2009

Head over heels...

Another week in Kentucky has passed--and far too quickly. In just a few days, I'll be flying back to Alaska and although I have sorely missed Darice and the pets (and by extension, Ron, who is still in Korea), it will be wrenching to leave Dennae and Richie and my little boys again. They don't know I'll be returning in December to stay with them for an extended period of time. Without a clear concept of the passage of time they'd probably drive their parents insane with questions. So for the time being, I'll be leaving them with the promise that I'll return as soon as I can.

Dustin and Hunter have been going to the YMCA each morning and spending the day in lots of fun activities, but Cannon has stayed home with me while Dennae sleeps. He's an active, inquisitive, and very intelligent little boy and I find it's quite a challenge to keep up with him. It didn't help matters any that I took a tumble in front of the local Cracker Barrel last Sunday morning and hurt both legs and my face badly. I've been hobbling around ever since and chasing after a 2-year-old has been even tougher than usual. But I'll heal and days like the ones I've been spending here in Kentucky are too few and far between to worry about a few aches and pains.

Until the next time...

Friday, July 17, 2009

Back in Kentucky

I'm in Kentucky now visiting Dennae, Richie, Dustin, Hunter, and Cannon for three weeks. It's been wonderful and I'm already dreading saying goodbye. I depart Kentucky and head back to Alaska on July 29th. After that, Darice will be leaving for Mississippi for a few months to finish up her degree at MSU and about six weeks later, Ron will be returning home from Korea. Things will be a bit strange in our household for the next few months, but life is like that once in a while.

I'm amazed at the way the boys have grown and changed--Cannon, in particular. Since it's been a year since I last visited them, they've all grown taller and even more handsome than they were the last time I saw them. I surprised Dustin and Hunter at the YMCA and I was humbled and tickled pink to see how excited they were to see me again. Even little Cannon recognized me--that's due, I'm sure, to his seeing me on the webcam over the past few months.

I continue to work on the book. It's nearly finished, although the editing will never stop. Sooner or later, though, I'll have to say "that's it" and let it go. Changes can always be made later; right now, I need to finish it the best way I know how and send it out to agents and editors. I pray it will find a home. As soon as this one is finished, I'm going to start on another. But I'm a first-class procrastinator and saying I'll do something is a far cry from actually doing it. I pray everyday for the diligence necessary to do the work that God has planned for me.

Until the next time...

Friday, March 20, 2009

Writing for the Soul

I've been in Anchorage, Alaska, for nearly eight months now and its beauty still astounds me. The mountains, now covered completely in white, surround the area and every time I look out a window here on Elmendorf Air Force Base, I'm reminded of God's great kindness in providing His children with all His natural creations. I don't suppose I'll ever grow accustomed to seeing towering mountain peaks, watching bald eagles as they soar overhead, or moose as they strip bare tree branches or wander slowly across the street and yards. Spring is coming and soon we'll be on the lookout for bears. While I wouldn't relish an up-close-and-personal encounter with one, I do hope I see several in their natural habitats (at a safe distance, of course) before I leave this state for good.

I attended the Writing for the Soul conference in Colorado Springs last month and it was phenomenal. Gathered together were writers from all parts of the United States--some from other countries--whose goal is to write for God's greater glory. I learned so much and enjoyed the company of my fellow Craftsman students once again. We were able to spend a lot of time with Jerry B. Jenkins and as usual, he was charming, funny, open, and extraordinarily helpful. That man is definitely devoted to the task of training Christian writers. We were also treated to an hour-long meeting (just the Craftsmen) with Karen Kingsbury, another great writer in the Christian genre. What a wonderful opportunity! I was fortunate in that several editors and an agent asked for my book proposal and first three chapters. I'll be sending that out to each of them shortly and will then begin the process of waiting for their responses.

I pray the Lord will guide me in writing what He would have me write. I count my blessings constantly and know that it's only through His goodness and mercy that I'm able to spend all my time writing. He has provided me with a loving home, fantastic children (and their spouses), and precious grandchildren--the least I can do is to honor Him with any skill He has given me to use while on earth.

Until the next time...

Laughing with the Lord #4

Welcome to #4 of Laughing with the Lord! Wondering what makes God smile has long been a burning question for me. I know He smiles and laug...