Prayer Request for Parker Hayes

Meet nine year-old Parker Hayes, the grandson of very dear friends of ours. Parker is battling Ewing’s Sarcoma, a rare bone cancer. Over the last few days Parker has been fighting a deadly bowel infection that spiked a temp of 106 at one point. I won’t go into too many details, just know that he needs to get his platelets up and get well so he can continue his chemo treatments and have a tumor removed from his fibula. He is a very sick little guy. Parker lives in upstate New York, if you’d like to picture a destination for your prayers. I will post updates on my blog.

Visit the Parker Hayes Fund page on FaceBook.

Thank you so very much for your prayers. Please feel free to distribute this request.


early morning reflections


For this blog post I think I’d like to reflect on the past week before I lay me down to sleep.

‘Before I lay me down to sleep’? Now, where did that phrase come from? I’m going to have to investigate this prayer blast from the past.

“Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep, if I should die before I wake, I pray to God my soul to take.”  I’m having a flashback to being a little kid and saying this prayer every night while being scared to death to fall asleep in case I just might die. I didn’t want to die. I loved God and Jesus, but – even if God was going to take my soul, I didn’t want my soul taken at seven years of age. I had plans. Swings, walking my Tiny Tears doll, roller skating, bike riding, growing up, for Petey’s sake. I wanted to grow up to be a lady and wear a bra and have a baby. I wanted to be an actress, a nun and a telephone man. (the poles and spikes intrigued me) I didn’t want to die then, and I don’t want to die now. I’m almost sixty, have recently fallen in love all over again with Jesus and God and I’m hoping (and praying) the feeling is mutual about my job not being finished here yet.

Three or four years ago I met a woman at an event where antique and art appraisers either made you happy or pissed you off about your treasures. I sat next to her and her family while waiting to get my three “pay the mortgage on the house” treasures appraised. We got talking about death for some reason, and as soon as the subject was brought up she beamed and said, “I’m ready!” Here she is in her late 30’s with a nice looking husband (not my type – he looked like Richie Cunningham ),  two cute and very clean kids and she was ready to cash in her chips and leave them behind.

“You’re so young,” I said.

“I’m ready! I can’t wait. I’m not scared.”

She wasn’t going to make me feel guilty for not wanting to die right there on the spot. “Well, I’m not scared either, but I still have things to do here on Earth before I meet Jesus.”

I thought back to my childhood hopes. I’d done a little acting in community college, so the actor got checked off, and I had two babies, so the baby-bearing got checked off. I wear an industrial strength bra and some people might argue that I’m anything but a “lady” at times, but I still had the nun and telephone man experiences to achieve.

Me: “Nope, I’m not ready to go yet. I will someday, though and I’m not scared, I’m just not ready.”

She smiled at me.


Off she went with a huge painting from their hallway; her family all smiling and happy.


Me! My turn! My family came in from the sidelines and we waited while the appraiser took his special eye magnifier and went over our Currier and Ives lithograph. Dollar signs were dancing in our heads as he went from one spot to the other and then another.

Appraiser: “Well, this is a fine example of Currier and Ives, which has some hash tags and kumquats which decrease the value a bit but I’d say it’s worth is about $3,000.”

Cha-ching! The fact was that we were never going to sell it since it was a family heirloom. We just wanted to know it’s worth, so when we hung it back on the wall we could stare at it and say, “Wow, that’s worth $3,000.” Big deal. If you aren’t going to insure it, sell it or give it away, why find out what it’s worth?

I can’t help but wonder if the woman I met that afternoon, laid her head down that night with money in her pocket and a smile.

Flash Mob Mac Attack

What do these two things have in common?

If you were in ‘the family’, meaning my cousins family, it would mean you’ve been eating a Big Mac at 7pm on every Friday the 13th in honor of – in honor of – hmmm… I’m not sure. I think it’s just in honor of Friday the 13th! I know my cousin told me once how it started but I can’t remember. I just know that the family will be joining in the Mac munching in Virginia, New York, Colorado, South Carolina, Tennessee and who knows where else?  I don’t eat beef, so I’m going to join in this year eating a Filet of Fish at 6pm CT.

This could be a fun way to celebrate with your family if eating Big Macs isn’t already a part of your regular diet. You’d get to splurge in April and July, too!

here’s a link to my niece’s blog post about the Mac Attack. Bon Apetit


Attention Deficit Oh – Shiney!

the last three or four or fifteen days have been like this. somewhere in that cloud is my brain with me attached to it. my brain and i are trying to start something and actually finish it. just one thing. one. 1. uno. you know the lingo. i start one project, like doing the dishes, and end up with a kagillion unfinished messes.

i committed to finishing something this year. this Christian guy author (they are a pain in the ass sometimes) Jon Acuff  (   had this great idea to get a bunch of slacker people like me to commit to finishing something in the new year of 2012. i can’t remember who posted his website on FB first – i wish i could remember because i’d like to say thank you so much. NOT!

goals. i hate that word. what are goals good for unless you’re playing hockey? and the way our team is playing… well, it’s obvious they didn’t sign up on Jon’s site for committing to goals. oops! there’s an Oh! Shiney! moment. where was i?  oh, goals – personal goals. i committed to eight! i can’t finish the dishes without rearranging the living room or going through old magazines or all of the above, but i’ve committed to finishing eight different goals. what was i thinking?

of course, i do have a year to finish them. what’s today? January 5th, soon to be January 6th in two minutes. dang. there goes another day.

my list:

1) finish writing my book

i’ve actually been working on that the last couple of days. whoopie for me!

2) blog weekly

ummm… that’s what i’m doing right now, so, whoopie for me again. maybe i’m not as Oh!Shiney as i thought i was. that’s what i started to write about, isn’t it? or was it Jon Acuff and his dumb idea? hmmmm… our hockey team lost tonight! ugh… they make me so crazy sometimes – oh.

3) de-stuff the house.

while taking down Christmas we decided to weed out the holiday things we really didn’t need to keep. then we were trying to decide what we should put in specifically marked (by my engineer husband) bins: re-purpose, indoor yard sale place, donate, throw out or not sure. so many choices… there are bins everywhere with bits and pieces of christmas in them. i think i want to take my Avon collectible plates back out of the yard sale box. i was supposed to look up their worth, but i got distracted and ended up doing something else. probably laundry or rearranging the top shelf in a kitchen cabinet.

4) be grateful more often (jon acuff has committed to writing thank you cards)

i put a box of thank-you cards on my desk with my address book. i also put note cards with them. i took one thank-you card out of the box to mail to Aunt Lois thanking her for taking me to dinner over thanksgiving while i was in new york. (of this year) then i got distracted. prob’ly by Facebook. damn FB.

5) read an unspecific number of nonfiction books from our church library.

my husband and i were asked to start and run the church library. really? we were newbies to church to begin with and while i’m a writer/reader (not necessarily christian stuff)  bossman, my husband, had read and finished, maybe…two books in the 38 years i’d known him at that point in time. two years after creating the library with our pastor’s recommendations and our research and suggestions from library users, bossman has read 13 books from our 113 titles so far. i’ve read one. so, i’ve chosen a book, have had it about a week and haven’t opened the cover yet. i did watch the latest episode of American Pickers, though.

6) lose unspecific amount of weight by walking unspecific number of days.

do we really need to discuss this? i’m trying to get rid of the christmas cookies – ya know those starving kids in China? guilt x’s infinity for not sending the cookies to them and for me chowing down on them. walking… oh, there goes another neighbor by my window. they look cold.

7) learn to commit to goals.

as i write my eight down and put them out there for all to see, i’m learning i have commitment issues. i have stayed married for over 40 years, though. does that count? did i tell you we had a great party in september celebrating those 40 years? another time, maybe…

8] love better and more often

i’m not sure i’m doing this very well, either.  distracted by our daughter’s medical issues sometimes brings me to my knees and i pray asking for patience and answers, when all i want to do is throw things and break coffee mugs. instead of turning to God and thanking Him for the joys in my life i’ve concentrated on the crap. hmmm… like losing hockey games. yeah, that’s important.

so, okay then. i’m glad we’ve had this talk. i think i’ve figured out that i’ve got to get my head outta the clouds for my brain to get outta the clouds. de-clutter my life and take you all with me. i think i’ve figured out that my brain must be like the top of my desk. i’ll end this post with a picture of that.

hey, thanks for listening. join me in #finishyear. just don’t pick eight goals to achieve by the end of the year. it’ll make you crazy.