Saturday, August 30, 2014

Titters from the Twitter (and Other Places): August 2014

This month's titters from the Twitter (and other places).  Enjoy! 

08/02:  From Facebook:  K.Tierce shared: 
08/09:  From Facebook:  Southern Women Channel shared:
08/10:  From Facebook:  P.Mason shared:  If Disney movie posters were honest:
08/10;  From today's sermon:  "I know they teach in seminary not to repeat your stories, but I'm only 29 years old.  I don't have enough good stories." - Will McGee, College Pastor, FBC-J'ville
08/22:  From Twitter:   @JonAcuff tweeted:  "I'm in no position to judge anyone. I'm on my 5th 2nd chance right now." - Katt Williams
08/23:  From Whose Line is it Anyway on YouTube:  "They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so make up something." - Colin Mochrie
08/24:  From Facebook:  D.Smith via James Spann shared:
08/25:  From Twitter:  @JonAcuff tweeted:  "I’m thinking about becoming a minimalist. I bought like 20 books on the subject."
08/25:  From Facebook (found it on YouTube):  J.Reaves shared:
08/26:  From Twitter:  @greg_burgess tweeted:  On the question of whether breakfast was the most important meal of the day:  "the most important meal is my next one."
08/26:  From Twitter:  @JonAcuff tweeted:  "To get the lamp on my desk to turn on I have to hit my desk with my fist like Fonzie. I'm no electrician, but that can't be good."
08/26:  From Twitter:  @CraigyFerg tweeted:  "Energy bars are the Ed Hardy t-shirts of food. "
08/26:  From Twitter:  @theoffice_humor tweeted:  "I've drank so much coffee tonight, the coke-head beside me is complaining that I'm too jittery."
08/28:  From YouTube:  Rick and Bubba posted:
08/29:  From Twitter:  @NOTSportsCenter tweeted: 
Lou Holtz's Week 1 Picks:
Georgia vs Clemson- Notre Dame
LSU vs Wisconsin- Notre Dame
Florida State vs Oklahoma State- Notre Dame

Friday, August 29, 2014

Five Minute Friday: "Reach"

Our Mistress of Ceremonies for the Five Minute Friday is Kate over at Heading Home.  Hope you link up with us and join the fun.
Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this one thing I do, forgetting those things which are behind, and reaching forth unto those things which are before, I press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13-14 (King James Version)
I gotta reach up higher, 'cuz I wanna feel the fire.  Getting bigger with a vigor when You're living in my soul....I wanna reach, reach for heaven. I wanna reach, reach for You.
Reaching, grasping, clinching, gasping for air.  Who can rescue the one who is drowning--drowning in a sea of pain, regret, and bad choices?  Who will take the hand of the one who is reaching out for help?
What am I reaching for?  What goals am I reaching?  I'm not sure.  Am I reaching for the right thing?  I sure hope so.
A while back, I was at our church's annual yard sale and needed some help with the bicycle and rack I had bought.  Instead of asking, I tried to think of how I could do it myself.  My friend, Frank, asked me why I was being so prideful by not asking for help (he and a couple of guys from Our Father's Arms ended up helping me).  I didn't know how to explain it to him.  It's not simply a matter of pride, but of necessity.  I have reached out for help on various things in the past and been royally ostracized and criticized for asking (including simply asking for prayer).  It's like I was drowning, reaching for a rescue, and having my hand slapped away and being yelled at for not being a better swimmer.
What does one do who reaches out and finds the angry emptiness of a closed fist rather than the loving touch of an open hand?

Out to Lunch: The Friday 5

Go over to for the weekly prompts.

This weeks theme:  Eating out.
  1. What’s the last thing you experienced that could be called a reunion? Oh honey, I have family reunion every time I go to Wal-Mart.  If it's not blood kin, there's always plenty of my church family to catch up with while shopping.
  2. When you spend time out with friends, how does your group handle the bill?  We pay it.
  3. What are you picky about when you order something in a restaurant?  Service.  I'm not so much food picky; I usually order the same thing all the time.  However, I am picky about service.  If a server is rude or inattentive, I do not tip.  If I find out a restaurant pools their tips, I either don't eat there again, or a I don't tip when I am there.  I don't believe in a mediocre or bad server getting part of the tip I gave to an excellent one.  That's tacky.  It angered me so much that I once wrote a check to a server in her name so that the eatery couldn't get their hands on it. 
  4. When did you last spill a drink on yourself?  Probably this morning.  My shirts are always hungry.
  5. When dining out, what’s your approach to dessert?   Walk softly and carry a big spoon.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Love's Labour's Lost: The Weekly Hodgepodge

Want to join the party?  Go on over to From This Side of the Pond  for the Hodgepodge questions.

As August draws to a close, share what's been your favorite weekend of the entire summer?
It hasn't happened yet.  This Saturday is the opening game for the University of Alabama football team.  Roll Tide!
Labor Day is marked in the US of A on Monday, September 1st.  What paying job have you held that you've loved the most? Liked the least?
The job I loved the most was when I taught preschool at a local Christian school.  The job I liked the least is a toss up between the summer I worked for a fast food restaurant in Piedmont, Alabama, and my four year stint as a secretary.
Does the new school year start before or after Labor Day where you live? When do you think it should begin? There is much discussion now about older students having later start times to their school day...your thoughts?
The school year starts the middle of August here.  I think it should start after Labor Day and Fall Break should be eliminated.  I heard a radio show make a great point;  if the schools really need to save money, why are they starting school when it's still 100 degrees outside and they have to run the A/C full blast all day?  Why don't they start in September when it's starting to get cooler?  That's how we did it and we turned out OK.
What's something you've worked at recently that could be deemed a 'labor of love'?
Nothing recently.  I've been ill.  :(
Which of the following work idioms can you most relate to right now...'A woman's work is never done.', 'All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy.' 'Many hands make light work.'
Not any of them, really.  I've been fighting illness, so I have been able to get much work done at all.  The rest of this week, I hope to catch up on the work I been too sick to complete.
Crab or lobster or thanks, but no thanks? Favorite way to have your choice prepared?
I've never eaten either one to know what I like.  The seafood salads I've eaten have fake crab meat in them, so that doesn't count.
Albert Einstein is quoted as saying, 'Three rules of work: Out of clutter find simplicity; From discord find harmony; In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity.' Which of the three do you consider to be the most important? Share one of your own 'rules of work.'
I'd say "In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity."  Or, to put it as Chris Powell from Extreme Weight Loss, "the more you want something, the more life will test you."  My main rule for work is "Get 'er done!"  Distraction can kick in, I'm off on a rabbit trail, and, oops, something doesn't get done.  That, along with its cousin, "Don't fiddle fart around."
Insert your own random thought here.
During our hiatus from the Hodgepodge, I contracted a horrible sinus infection.  I've been out of it for almost three weeks.  Today is the first day I've been able to actually stay up all day.  So, I've got a lot to catch up on before I can have a decent random thought to write.

Sunday, August 24, 2014

Dizzy Gillespie: The Simple Woman's Daybook

If you would like to join in and post your own Daybook, please head on over to visit Peggy at The Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today:  Sunday, August 24, 2014

Outside my window … It is hotter than a billy goat's butt in a pepper patch outside!  We need rain...badly.

Praising God for…  My church meeting it's goal for the Honduras orphanage.  The money goes to buy formula, diapers, and other necessities for the sweet babies there.
In prayer for...  The church meeting its summer budget goal (we're almost there).  Engage, our college ministry, starts back tomorrow.  Our church is in prayer for the leadership and the students who will attend throughout the school year. 

I am thinking... about college football season (six days until the first University of Alabama game), about how to get back to my fitness routine after being ill for so long, about friends who don't yet know Him, and then there's just the practical everyday stuff I think about all the time. 

I am thankful... that I made it safely to and from church today.  The meds the doctor gave me Monday for a sinus infection have made me ridiculously dizzy.  Yeah, I know I probably shouldn't have driven today, but I have a major case of cabin fever, plus, my Worship Pastor would have dropped dead if I hadn't shown up.  Yes, he is that desperate for help.  ;)  I'm thankful for a great service this morning.  I'm thankful that I actually washed the dishes today.  I've been trying to wash them all since Wednesday.  Now, if I could just not eat until I'm completely well...
In the kitchen...  Nothing tonight. 

I am wearing... Bedclothes.

I am creating...
 Just finished a bunch of Christmas stockings for a friend's Sunday School class.  Hope to get to work on some paintings and baby items this week. 
I am going... depends on how much of the dizzy is gone.  Hopefully, I'll get out of the house sometime this week for something fun and useful.
I am wondering... about myself...again.
I am reading...   Still reading How to Have a Mary Heart in a Martha World by Joanna Weaver.  I would have finished by now, but I was too ill this week to even hold up a book and read.

I am hoping... to catch up from the past two weeks of little to no activity.

I am looking forward to...
Saturday's Bama game (Roll Tide!).
I am learning
… that I'm too much Martha and not enough Mary

Around the house... I conquered the dishes, so we'll see what else I can do this week. 
I am pondering...  over new training programs.
A favorite quote for today...  On my friend's recent engagement:  "I usually lose all my good guy friends to marriage or death.  One is just as devastating as the other."  And, another one bites the dust.

One of my favorite things... Eleanor Burns' Quilt in a Day videos on YouTube.  She has a new one that I will be able to turn into a crochet quilt.  Time to get out the colored pencils.

A few plans for the rest of the week:   TBA

A peek into my day...  Good night, John Boy.


Friday, August 22, 2014

Old Fart Syndrome: The Friday 5

Go over to for the weekly prompts.

An ailment that knows no socioeconomic boundaries or demographic pigeonholes.  Like acne and dandruff, Old Fart Syndrome can affect us all at one time or another and can strike when we least expect it.  This week's Friday 5 questions help us assess our susceptibility. 
  1. What’s something you have a grumpy old person’s attitude about?  These papery-blog things called books.  I'm all for technology, but I really don't want electronic books to totally take the place of paper ones.  Yes, I like the portability of e-books and the convenience of audio books, but there is still something personal about having a real book.  There's something comforting about turning the pages of a favorite tome.  I want kids to still know how to learn when the power goes off.
  2. What is evidence of your not being a completely grumpy old person?  I don't hock my pants all the way to my armpits.  I still wear my own teeth.  I hate watching the news.  I don't play Farmville.  I still like to rock.
  3. What’s something in your wardrobe that might qualify as old people’s attire?   I guess my "maw-maw" shades.  I've got a pair of those sunshades that go over a pair of glasses that my friends tease me about wearing.  I do have a few pieces in my wardrobe that are a little matronly.  I try not to wear them out anywhere.
  4. When during the week do you tend to be your grumpiest?  It's not really a certain point in the week, but a certain time of the month...if you know what I mean.
  5. Who in your family is most often in a bad mood, and who’s most often in a good mood?  Our family is a fun loving bunch for the most part.  We do have a chosen few who seem to find no joy in anything and get upset when any of us find a reason to be happy.  We simply ignore them and go on.

Five Minute Friday: "Change"

Our new Mistress of Ceremonies for the Five Minute Friday is Kate over at Heading Home.  Hope you link up with us and join the fun.
But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.
II Corinthians 3:18 (King James Version) 
I've heard many people say that the best way to to change.  Pretty deep, huh?  **rolls eyes**  If change for the better were that simple, everyone would do it.  I know I get satisfied with my comfort zone of misery--needing to change, but not wanting to give up the familiarity of pain.
I'm glad that the inward change from the Spirit of God is instant, but I'm also glad that He doesn't expect the outward changes to be just as fast.  I would be in a heap load of trouble.  As I allow Him, God changes me little by little, day by day, until one day I look back and say, "Wow, look how far I've come.  God did that." 
Recovery is just like that.  One day at a time, one moment at a time, and meeting each temptation as it comes.  The more I worry about the possible temptations in the future, the more the ones of present trip me up.
I will not stop being teachable.  I will not stop changing.  I will not stop the metamorphosis.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Over the Counter: The Simple Woman's Daybook

If you would like to join in and post your own Daybook, please head on over to visit Peggy at The Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today:  Sunday, August 17, 2014

Outside my window … a dark muggy night. We had a good downpour earlier.

Praising God for…  The indwelling presence of His Holy Spirit.
In prayer for...  My upcoming week, people I love, my needs and the needs of the church. 

I am thinking... about finding ways to complete more of my 101 in 1001 list.

I am thankful... for today's rain.
In the kitchen...  I'm siting in bed eating crackers right now.  I'm going to sleep soon.

I am wearing... Bedclothes.

I am creating...
 Not much this past week.  Hopefully, I'll feel more up to it this week.
I am going... to a doctor's appointment tomorrow and maybe to Hobby-Lobby.  Not sure about the rest of the week.
I am wondering... if I will ever stay well long enough to meet my fitness goals.  I was having a really good start to the week, then I woke up with some sinus thing that's held on for a week.  It's very hard to work out when I feel tired, achy, and zoned out from OTC sinus meds.  It's a pain in the butt...or nose.
I am reading... How to Have a Mary Heart in a Martha World by Joanna Weaver.

I am hoping... to get well.  I'm hoping my appointment goes well tomorrow.  I'm also hoping I'll get some good sleep tonight.  I haven't slept well the past few days and have been too tired to do much during the day.

I am looking forward to...
getting back to my workout routine.
I am learning
… that yellow Gatorade is my friend.

Around the house... I did get the dry erase board and cork board hung.  I'm still wanting to work on the porch and detail my car. 
I am pondering...  not much.  I'm starting to shut down.
A favorite quote for today...  "You can always out eat any form of exercise." - Bill "Bubba" Bussey, the Rick and Bubba Show

One of my favorite things... Campbell's Chicken Noodle Soup.  I need a case of it.

A few plans for the rest of the week:   Whatever my body will allow me to do..

A peek into my day...  Just resting, move on, nothing to see here, people.

Friday, August 15, 2014

Animal, Mineral, or Vegetable?: The Friday 5

Go over to for the weekly prompts.
Mammalian traits are this week's Friday 5 focus.
  1. Have you drunk the milk of some animal other than a cow? If so, how was it?  Yes, I've had the milk of the illusive Soy.  I'm not sure what kind of animal this is, but its milk is horrible.  Not in taste, but in effect.  What milk from a cow does to some people, milk from the Soy animal does to me.  I refuse to try almond milk.  I had to dodge an Almond animal on the highway once.  Dangerous...and the milk would probably taste gamey.
  2. How sensitive are you to changes in atmospheric temperature?  I'm more sensitive to changes in atmospheric pressure.  They say it's an old wives' tail, but drastic changes in pressure can cause physical responses  (bones aching, headache, etc.).
  3. How do you feel about your body hair?  I wish the hair on my head was longer, but I like it.  The rest of my body hair is just there until I shave it.
  4. What’s something you know about the moment of your birth or the events immediately before and after?  I'm the only one of my siblings to be born in a hospital instead of by midwife.  According to my mom, she was in labor with me for nearly three days.  She also said that I tried to emerge arm first, but somehow turned myself.  I guess I had to feel around for daylight before I dared come into this crazy world.
  5. What non-mammalian animal do you feel the most kinship with?  The butterfly.  My word for the year is metamorphosis.  I am in my cocoon just waiting to emerge beautiful and free.

Five Minute Friday: "Tell"

Our new Mistress of Ceremonies for the Five Minute Friday is Kate over at Heading Home.  Hope you link up with us and join the fun.
"We cannot stop telling about the wonderful things we saw Jesus do and heard him say.”
Acts 4:20 (The Living Bible)
I was taught in school not to be a tattletale.  That was useful in the prevention of whining, but it also kept me from telling things that should have been told. 
I had no idea that adulthood would bring about the same thing.  Not about being a tattletale, but having to keep things to myself.  I'm not at all advocating having diarrhea of the mouth and telling everyone everywhere all my business, I'm just talking about being able to tell the good without friends getting their shorts in a bunch, and telling the bad to people I should be able to trust without being accused of doing something wrong.  I, in turn, want to be a friend also so trustworthy.
The word tell also beings the lyrics, "Go tell it on the mountain; over the hills and everywhere.  Go tell it on the mountain that Jesus Christ is Lord."  Yeah, I know this is a Christmas song, but the message is 24/7.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

Say What?!: Thursday Thirteen

No matter what our position in life, we've all had stupid things said to us.  Various situations prompt us to speak before we think--trust me, I've done it myself dozens of times.  However, it seems the most asinine comments come from people trying to "encourage" an overweight friend.

I know, I haven't done a Thursday thirteen in a while, but what follows is a list of 13 things you shouldn't say to an overweight friend -- especially one working on her health.  Yes, I've had these said to me, and yes, I've either thought or said the snarky comments afterwards.  I'm not telling you which ones I actually said.  :)
  1. "You're beautiful inside and out." - This is such a backhanded compliment.  People have to add the "inside and out" because they can't simply say a big girl is beautiful.  Besides, how do you know what I look like on the inside?  Haven't you ever done dissection?  Yuck!
  2. "You have such a pretty face." - Here's "inside and out's" sister compliment.  What they're thinking, but not saying is "...but you have such an ugly body."  With comments like this, sometimes you just have to smile and think, "Bless your heart.  I wouldn't pee in your ear if your brain was on fire."
  3. "A food addict?  Come on, it's not as dramatic as all that.  You could just not eat that, then you wouldn't be a food addict.  Problem solved." - You could just shut up too, then you wouldn't be so stupid.  Problem solved.
  4. "You don't need to eat that."  - **SLAP!!**  I'm sorry, what did you say?  You were minding your own business and staying out of my plate?  That's what I thought you said.
  5. Please don't make Richard Simmons-esque comments when you see a larger person eat something you approve of. "Good for you for making such a healthy choice!  That's GREAT!" - Yeah, I can poo-poo in the potty all by myself too.  Go sit down somewhere!
  6. "Running?  You?!" - I had a 13 year old say that to me two weeks ago.  Where is your mama?! I know it's against the law to beat other people's children, but... 
  7. "Running's bad for your knees." - Kicking you in the butt is probably bad for my feet too, but I'm going to do it anyway if you don't hush.  By the way, I had more knee problems when I was heavier than I ever have since I started running.
  8. "I'm worried about you and all this exercise." - But you didn't give a rats behind when I wasn't exercising.  Hello, the logic train has left the station.
  9. "Slow and steady wins the race."  Since when? That logic doesn't work for NASCAR, and it ain't working for me either.  I'm slow and steady, and I ain't won nothin'!
  10. "You are why our healthcare is so high." - You are why our test scores are so low!  Kiss my...never mind.
  11. "Gastric Bypass surgery would be so much easier." - How is being gutted like a catfish easier?  This surgery doesn't have a very good track record and it is extremely dangerous.  Besides, didn't you just say I'm making your healthcare higher?
  12. "That weight you gained was just muscle, water, mucus, or air from where you need to fart." - I'm fat, not stupid. 
  13. "You wouldn't have __________  if you just lost weight." - Good grief, I've had everything from toenail fungus, to glaucoma, from dandruff to an oil leak in my car blamed on my weight.  This stuff makes my middle finger twitch.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

#59 Empty Shelf Challenge 05 [101 in 1001]

BookRunning Within .

Author: Jerry Lynch & Warren Scott

Info: Copyright 1999 Human Kinetics

Where acquired: Public Library book sale.

Availability: and

Why:  I am a struggling beginning runner and needed some pointers.  I saw this book at the library book sale and it looked interesting.

Rating (on a scale of 1-4 hashtags):  # #

What it's about:  The purpose of the book is to help runners transcend self-imposed mental barriers and attitudes that preclude advancing in the quest for improving their physical running game.

Favorite Quotes

"Remember, within the rose at all times is its full potential.  It is constantly in the process of change and growth as it comes into its own.  When we give it water, sun, and nourishment, it blossoms fully.  Like this flower, you are a natural unfolding athlete.  Nurture yourself with encouragement and positive affirmations (avoiding the messages that kill your spirit).  You have all that you need is within you now to become all that you can be.  Simply notice it and affirm it to be so." - p. 47

What I Liked:
  • I realize that I approach life through a different mindset and spiritual conviction than the authors.  Though I do not agree with the sources of some of the information contained in the book, the concepts are sound.   Well, OK, until the last couple of chapters.  Visualization and affirmation are key ingredients to a successful mental running game.  I needed that since I go into most races with a sense of defeat.  That mentality adds undue stress and sucks all the fun out of a race.
What I didn’t like: 
  • I can't stand it when an author takes a preface, the introduction and several chapters to tell us what the book is about, or what it's going to do for me.  Sounds like a used car salesman who's hiding something.  The authors fiddle fart around too much at the beginning of the book.  Just get to it, will you?  This prolonged faux suspense does not make me want to keep reading; it makes me want to throw the book across the room and hop on YouTube.
  • Once the authors do get to the point, they repeat themselves a lot.  (Can you say ad nauseam boys and girls?  I knew you could.)  It's as if one author didn't know what the other was writing.  How many times can you say "stress and pressure can lead to injury and burnout" and "don't think like a loser"?  We get it.
  • They never really address the body the way I expected.  The repetitive harping on the mind buries the physical aspects of running.  After 13 chapters on the mind, I was hoping the last five might address the body itself.  But, nope.  This made the book very hard to finish.  Honestly, I skimmed through the last couple of chapters.
  • It may be that this book isn't for a beginner like me; it may be for a more advanced runner who knows the physical basics and needs the mind connection.  That's not on them; that's on me.
  • Caption your photos, dudes.  I don't know who these people are or what they have to do with what I'm reading.
To sum up: My main takeaway from the book was this:

Keep running; just don't kill yourself doing it.  Oh yeah, and think positive.

Want to join the challenge?  Click the empty shelf photo on the right to learn more.  It's not too late!

Hot Tamale: The Weekly Hodgepodge

Want to join the party?  Go on over to From This Side of the Pond  for the Hodgepodge questions.

The best part of waking up is__________________________.
  • Folgers in your cup.  You knew that was coming, but I really do like my morning coffee.
  • Feeling rested.
  • Sunshine and birds singing.
  • A new chance to get it right.
  • The Rick and Bubba show (most of the time).
  • Did I mention coffee?
Given a choice, which animal interaction would you most like to experience (or for those non-adventurers...which would you dislike the least?)- Swim with the dolphins at one of several locations in the Florida Keys, a lion encounter ten minutes from Victoria Falls (Africa), or a day at a remote base camp high in the Big Sur wilderness via the Ventana Wildlife Society helping track California condors?
Definitely swimming with the dolphins.  Seems more likely to be fun and less likely to end in me being eaten or pecked to death by something.
What is something you fear about 'old age'? What is something you look forward to?
I fear dying alone.  I will look forward to old age if I know I won't be alone.  I don't mean alone as in unmarried, but alone as in no caring close friends.
Hot sauce...are you a fan? If you answered yes, what's something you make/eat that must have hot sauce? On a scale of 1-10 how hot is too hot?
I used to like hot sauce, but now I'm not a big fan of it.  I'm not sure why.
It's been said that children learn what they live. What do you think children learn at your house?
I don't have any children, so I can't really answer this question.  Sorry.
What's your favorite movie with a number in it's title?
Two Mules for Sister Sarah.  It's one of Clint Eastwood's spaghetti westerns.  My dad and I watched that movie every time it was on.  It's not really the movie's content that makes it a favorite; it's because it was something we shared.
Saturday (August 16th) is National Tell a Joke Day...share one here.

Insert your own random thought here.
I'm on sinus I plead the 5th. 

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

Tears of a Clown

Last night's closing thoughts were on the apparent suicide of actor and comedian Robin Williams.  A favorite radio program awakened me with the same topic.  I am saddened by the loss, but I am more saddened by the treatment of the loss.

I expected the world to turn this human being into a mere abstraction--a plastic character on the screen who is simply no more.  However, I didn't expect the Christian community to do the same.  OK, deep down I expected it, but it was still stinky when it happened.  This man stepped into eternity  24 hours ago, and people who've never met Mr. Williams all of a sudden know everything about him, his situation, his spiritual condition, his everything.  My friend, Alexis, summed it up this way on her Facebook page:
Everyone keeps talking about the characters that Robin Williams played and how sad they are that we will never see his talent again in a new way. This is all well and good because he did influence and bring joy to so many people in this way, so please don't think that I am saying it is wrong to mourn the loss of a talent. But please remember that it is not a character who has passed away - it is a man who was struggling. Today I am not mourning the Genie or Mrs. Doubtfire or Professor Keating. Today I am mourning a human being who could not find a way to escape the pain he was feeling in this life. We will miss you, Mr. Williams, not just because you made us laugh but because your life was precious and had purpose and changed the world.
Unfortunately, some cannot separate the celebrity from the human, many more cannot differentiate between the celebrity and the human.  For example when Pastor Rick Warren's son Matthew committed suicide, the world's outcry was the need to stop stereotyping mental illness; the church's outcry was, "He was a Christian, he had no reason to commit suicide."  Now that Mr. Williams is gone, the world's outcry was the need to stop stereotyping mental illness; the church's outcry was "He was a rich celebrity, so he couldn't have been a Christian.  He had every reason to commit suicide."

We who claim the name of Christ can't seem to acknowledge that there is depression and/or mental illness in our ranks.  When it is present, the person's spirituality, faith, and even his salvation itself is called into question.  The "leper" in question is lumped together with "those" people--those with defects that need to be hidden from view because they make the church look bad.

In the early days of my walk with Christ, the thing to do was to hide anyone who was sick, disabled, or physically infirmed in any way and call their faith into question.  Now, we readily accept physical sickness to the point we roll over and accept it without putting up a fight.  Back then, we didn't even acknowledge there was such a thing as mental illness or depression; it was always a demon that simply needed to be cast out.  Nothing has changed much.

Am I saying that there isn't a spiritual component to depression?  Not at all.  If there weren't, the Psalmist never would have written "Why art thou cast down, O my soul? and why art thou disquieted in me? hope thou in God: for I shall yet praise him for the help of his countenance." (Psalm 42:5 KJV)  What I am saying is that just as we used modern medicine as an aid to physical healing, why is using the same thing to aid in mental healing so taboo? 

It gets worse.  This is where I have to dive into my own stuff.  I'm not speaking something I haven't experienced.

If you know me personally or you've read my blog for any stretch of time, you know that I have bouts with depression.  What I haven't spoken of much is that this is not a recent development.  I've dealt with depression for years.  It started as just a seasonal thing I dealt with in wintertime, but it quickly escalated into long bouts of absolute despair to the point of physical malaise.  For years I had been counseled by my mentor (who is a Christ follower) to get medical help.  For years I refused.  Why?  Because the church advised against it.  Their reasoning was a) my faith just wasn't up to par and I needed to read the Bible and pray more (don't we all), b) would a real Christian allow the devil to attack them like this? c) I was being selfish and had myself on my mind too much was the reason I was depressed (at the time that gem was said I was working a job that was killing me and I was teetering on the edge of bankruptcy, but yeah, I was just selfish; that had to be it)  d) there are people with worse problems than you. (yeah...and?)  e) antidepressants have side affects that are worse than the meds themselves (I found out from my doctor that not all of them do).  I finally had one too many rounds of weeks in bed and suicidal thoughts to fiddle fart around with people who were more worried about image than people getting well.  I have tread my own path to healing without leaving my walk with Jesus out.  In fact, it starts there.  Like T.D. Jakes said, "Whatever ain't healed yet gots to get fixed."  I'm not completely well yet, but I can bounce back much quicker, and I have a network of friends and mentors who neither minimize my pain nor let me wallow in it.

So what does this have to do with Robin Williams?  What if in his quest to get help, he was told, "Well Robin, you have everything.  What have you got to be depressed about?"  Most of the news outlets I read from have analyzed his plight in just that degrading fashion.  What if he kept being the squeaky wheel that got no grease?  What if his humor was a covering for the real pain he felt, but his close circle of friends glossed over it to keep the good times rolling?  What if he was simply given crappy advice that kept him ill?  Of course, I don't know these things for certain, and I'm not going to act like I do.  However, for someone who has her phasers set to "snarky" most of the time, I know what the struggle of the sad clown feels like.

It's not simply Robin Williams I mourn, it is all who battle depression I mourn for.

Monday, August 11, 2014

#59 Empty Shelf Challenge 04 [101 in 1001]

BookSo Long, Insecurity. You've Been a Bad Friend to Us .

Author: Beth Moore

Info: Copyright 2010:  Carol Stream, IL:  Tyndale House Publishers

Where acquired: Checked out of public library.

Why:  Chronic insecurity is one of the results of  being unhealthy and overweight.  I actually saw this book at the library while I was looking for something else.  I already knew that Beth Moore was a solid Bible teacher, so I trusted that the book would do exactly what it set out to do:  be a practical Biblical guide to dealing with insecurity.

Rating (on a scale of 1-4 hashtags):  # # # #

What it's about:  Moore deconstructs insecurity into it's basic elements:  the whats and whys of insecurity.  This book is part autobiography, part Gallup poll, part psychological lecture, and part campmeeting.  Her focus in on women, though she does garner information from men as well and addresses some of their insecurities along the way.  This is not a self-help book, but quite the opposite.

Favorite Quotes: 

For fear of quoting the whole book, I'll restrict myself to three or four quotes.

"I don't think that any male in my life would claim that I harbor repressed anger at his gender.  (And if he did, I have a mind to hit him square in the middle of his forehead with a slingshot and a bottle of Midol.)"  - p. 6

"At the root of chronic insecurity is often the primal fear that no one will take care of us."  - p. 65

"Truth is the first casualty in a media-crazed society" - Dr. Rick Rigsby p. 97

"Insecurities do not attract.  They repel.  Insecurities do not invite intimacy.  They invite uncertainty. They do not work for us on any level at all, except to open our hearts and minds to the healing, securing strength of Christ.  Through Him we have acquired the human unction upon which every life pivots; the power to choose." - p. 238

What I Liked:
  • I am drawn to authors whose messages come from practical experience.  If I didn't know any better, I'd swear this woman lived in my house and wrote this book about me.  It's written in a conversational style, rather than in condescending, "I've got it all together so what's wrong with you?" clinical psychobabble.
  • Unlike other books I've read, Moore doesn't simply say "here's the problem, now get over it."  She conveys great sympathy and empathy for both men and women dealing with insecurity.  But she doesn't leave us there.  She goes on to present the cure, which is not an instant one, but an exercise in persistent recovery strategies.
  • This book was good enough for me to pay library late fees to finish it.  I'm cheap thrifty, so that says something.
What I didn’t like: 
  • Not really a dislike, but maybe a nit-picking.  When she first mentions that she surveyed men for their opinions on insecurity, she says that she didn't require them to give their ages, yet all through relaying their comments, she gave their ages.  So, I guess she meant that the question was optional?  Just confused wording, but it just niggled at me as I read.
To sum up: My main takeaway from the book was this:

God says in Proverbs 31:25 says that He clothes women in strength and dignity.  I better learn how to put my clothes on!
Update (2017):  I have now purchased a copy of this volume for my personal library.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

Howling at the Moon: The Simple Woman's Daybook

If you would like to join in and post your own Daybook, please head on over to visit Peggy at The Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today:  Sunday, August 10, 2014

Outside my window … Dusk is falling and I'm waiting to see if I can get a peak at the supermoon.

Praising God for…  A great time of discussion and laughter at Sunday School today.
In prayer for...  My Sunday School class: we have several who are either sick or have sick family members. 

I am thinking... about fall and how awesome it's going to be to get out on the Ladiga Trail.  I've been missing it, but it's been too hot and humid to be out there much.

I am thankful... for the blessed peace of thankfulness.  God has given me thankfulness as a healing balm to my soul.
In the kitchen...  Chicken and rice my friend Michelle made.

I am wearing... Black shorts and a white tank top.

I am creating...
 Christmas ornaments, setting up to do some sewing this week.  I've also started on a large writing project.  I'll keep you posted.
I am going... I'm working at the house tomorrow.  Tuesday I'll head to Sav-A-Life, the library, and to run errands.  Hopefully, I'll make it to community band practice.  I'll most likely stay at home until Friday's CR meeting, but who knows, some good mischief might find me.
I am wondering... if I can learn to braid my own hair.
I am reading... I'm in the home stretch of the two books I've been reading.  You'll see reviews soon.  I'll link them here when they're done. Link 1Link 2.

I am hoping...
for a good week, for craft sales, for open doors, and for a chance to be blessing to those I encounter.

I am looking forward to...
running another 5k race.
I am learning
… that sometimes being right isn't important enough to lose my peace over.

Around the house... Just found the perfect place to hang my dry erase board and cork board in the craft room.  I'm still working on settling and rearranging some stuff.  Still want to tame the front porch.
I am pondering...  over the art of thankfulness.
A favorite quote for today...  "I know they teach in seminary not to repeat your stories, but I'm only 29 years old.  I don't have enough good stories." - Will McGee, College Pastor, FBC-J'ville

One of my favorite things... Coca-Cola.  I know it's bad for me, but since I used to drink soda like water and now I only drink one or two a week (if that), I think I should be given a pass.

A few plans for the rest of the week:   Trying to find more local things in which I can get involved.  I know that JackVegas isn't that far from Weaver, but I want to explore the social possibilities of my new town.

A peek into my day...

Well, this is the best shot I could get of the moon.


Friday, August 8, 2014

Respect the Polygon: The Friday 5

Go over to for the weekly prompts.
With the overhyping of the tropical storms off the coast of Hawaii and the "sideways tornado" hoax (to the chagrin of the world's best meteorologist, James Spann) storms are the focus of this week's Friday five.
  1. What does your storm preparedness stuff look like?  It looks like a flashlight and a seat in the hallway.
  2. What kinds of storms make you the most uncomfortable?  Snowstorms or ice storms.  We don't get them very often in the Deep South, but when we do, they're a doozy.  It's cold, the power goes off, I can't drive anywhere, and I can only eat so many PopTarts.
  3. What’s the longest you’ve ever gone without electricity, and what were the circumstances?  I've only been without power for a day or two at most.  Alabama Power is very good about getting things up and running again as quickly as possible.  I've been powerless because of severe thunderstorms, freezing weather, and drunk goobers ramming their cars into power poles .
  4. What’s the worst damage a storm has done to your dwelling?  My dwelling have not really suffered a lot of damage.
  5. What was the occasion for your last storming of the gates?  I'm not sure what this question is asking, so I guess my answer is never.

Five Minute Friday: "Fill"

Our new Mistress of Ceremonies for the Five Minute Friday is Kate over at Heading Home.  Hope you link up with us and join the fun.
The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows).
John 10:10 (Amplified Version)

What am I full of?  Is it the joyful, abundant life Jesus spoke of in the scripture above, or is it something else?
I'm learning fast that being full of other's whims and opinions will not bring that life.  Caring so much about what other people think to the point that every bit of communication thrown my way feels like an attack will not bring that life; it will push it away.
I've been doing a lot of soul searching lately.  I'm asking the Lord to refill me with all that I used to be full of before too much stress and pain pushed it out.  I'm also asking Him to help me empty out all that takes away from the life He wants me to live.  Only being full of the Spirit of God and all the wonderful things that go with it will truly put my broken life back together.  I want to be full of life, love, and joy.  May I stop swallowing the bitter pills of this world and start feeding on the words of the Almighty.
But he (Jesus) answered and said, It is written, Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that proceedeth out of the mouth of God. 
Matthew 4:4  (King James Version)

Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Kokomo: The Weekly Hodgepodge

Want to join the party?  Go on over to From This Side of the Pond  for the Hodgepodge questions.

What would you say is the key to success?
Heck if I know that.  When I find out, I'll let you know.  I have theories on what success looks like, but I haven't been able to play it out in my life yet.
Have you ever been to the Florida Keys? Any desire to visit that part of the US of A?
No, I haven't, but I would like to. 

When and where did you last see a real live donkey? Monkey? Turkey?
Monkee monkey and donkey?  Never.  Turkey?  Other than on the table brown and crisp at Thanksgiving, nope.
An old Portuguese proverb says, 'Beware of the door with too many keys.' What do you think this means? Share an example of how this has proven true or false in your own life.
I'm not sure.  A door doesn't really have keys.  It requires a key to be opened if it's locked.  So, I don't think a door can have too many keys.  If the key opens the door, that's a good thing.
Besides your home, vehicle, and special jewelry, what is something you keep under lock and key?
Secrets of the heart.
When did you last get keyed up about something?
The Woodstock 5k in Anniston, Alabama this past Saturday.  I'm always keyed up and in desperate need of sleep the night before a race.  Adrenaline always kicks in with the excitement of race day.
Who thinks we need an easy one right about now?  Key lime pie...yes please or no thank you?
Oh yes, please.  Plus, I've had a couple of different brands of Key Lime Pie yogurt that were yummy. 
Insert your own random thought here.

I thought this map of the "Florida Keys" was funny.  Courtesy of the Late, Late Show With Craig Ferguson.

Speaking of the beach...

I finished this seashell painting today.

Hmm... random thought.  I usually share a picture or a song at this point, but I've already done that.  I will say that seeing all my friends' beach vacation pictures on social media made me kind of sad.  I was happy for them, but mad at myself for still not being at the place to be able to go anywhere for fun, much less go to the beach.  Oh well, it's my own fault.  I'll just keep on working on it, and on me.

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Public Service Announcement [Auntie's Rants]

Last week, a woman was attacked on the Silver Comet Trail in Georgia.  This is the portion that connects with Alabama's Chief Ladiga Trail.  It's not secret how much I love walking/ running/ biking/ loafing on the Ladiga Trail (thus the photos).  This summer has been a hot one and I haven't been out much, but fall is coming and I plan to be out there more.

...That is until this happened.  Now some of my friends are showing concern for my being out on the trail.  However many of them don't even use the trail, constantly make excuses for not going with me, they are not available to go when I am, or they go walking/riding with each other but don't want my slowness  or clinginess to cramp their style.  I don't blame them at all.  I'm always the slowest no matter what we're doing, so going with them is just like going alone since they are too far ahead to hear me if something happened.  Plus, it's not fair of me to want people to slow down for me.  It's not just my workout; it's theirs too.

So what's a girl to do?   Stay inside in fear and stay off the trail?  That's too much like when I was a little kid and I told mom I didn't want to go outside because no one would play with me and there were bullies.  She would tell me to quit whining, get outside, and find something to do.  I'm telling myself the same thing. 

I was using a check in/out over social media to let people know I was out.  However, less and less people are even acknowledging they're seen the post, so I have no idea if anyone is looking out for me our not; but yet I keep going. 

...and keep going is the best solution for the problem.  This Saturday, several organizations including the Gadsden Runners Club are doing a "Take Back the Trail for Tina (The lady who was attacked)" ride on the Ladiga and Silver Comet Trails.  Their goal:  "We need to show strength in numbers that we will not concede our love for the outdoors because of a sick minded predator."  I will be with them in spirit.  The ride is 55 miles and I cannot ride that far yet.

I refuse to let the bully win.  I refuse to put my health in jeopardy waiting for someone to show charity in letting me ride/walk with them once in a blue moon.  I refuse to be at the mercy of fear. I eventually want to ride the whole trail, and waiting around for everyone else isn't getting that goal fulfilled.   I will, however, continue to take the best precautions I can:
  • Continue to use the check in/out.  It would be nice if y'all would check it and let me know you're there.
  • Use familiar trail areas where there are always people.
  • Never use the trail before sunrise or after dark alone.
  • Try to keep minutes on my cell phone in case of emergencies or reporting to the police that I had to jack up some goober on the trail.
  • Get faster and less clingy so I can go with others.
  • When I can afford it, get a pistol permit and a gun.
Those of you who really want to get out there--GO!  Don't let one sicko keep you from doing something healthy for yourself.  Who's with me?!

Saturday, August 2, 2014

The Bird: The Simple Woman's Daybook

If you would like to join in and post your own Daybook, please head on over to visit Peggy at The Simple Woman's Daybook

For Today:  Saturday, August 2, 2014

Outside my window … Party cloudy skies, the roar of my next door neighbor trying to show off with his crappy lawnmower again.  Can you say "ghetto fabulous"?

Praising God for…  The patience of others, provision,
In prayer for...  my mental state (what else is new?), my business, the hurting and those who don't yet know Christ.

I am thinking... about fall, about how to get outside more.

I am thankful... for another day.  For a fabulous day at the Woodstock 5k today.
In the kitchen...  Leftovers.  Can you tell those are my favorite?  :)

I am wearing... Shorts and a tank top.

I am creating...
 Not much today.
I am going... to bed soon.
I am wondering... I'm still wondering about the skin rash thing I mentioned in an earlier post.  Once I get one spot well, another one crops up.  I think it was from changing laundry soap.  Well, I changed back, but it's still popping up.  Weird.  Well, I've got a check up on the 8th, so that will be one of the questions I'll ask the doctor. 
I am reading... I'm almost done with So Long, Insecurity by Beth Moore.  This book is so insightful, and Beth Moore is a mess. 

I am hoping...
for a great week and all that it means.

I am looking forward to...
my sister Margie's 60th birthday party in November.
I am learning
… that "slow and steady wins the race" is a crock.

Around the house... Resting.
I am pondering...  I'm probably being a total butt about this, but I'm pondering over something that happened at the 5k today.  There was a team there called "Black Girls Run."  If there was a team that wanted to compete called "White Girls Run," I wonder would they be deemed racist and not allowed to compete?  Makes me wonder.  (They did have cool shirts though.)
A favorite quote for today... "If you read the instructions carefully, the first step to making ANY microwaveable meal is to throw away the box and then dig it out of the trash." - Derek Raulerson

One of my favorite things... I'm really taking a liking to yellow Gatorade.  This doesn't necessarily constitute a favorite, but it's a long way from my former loathing of any form of Gatorade.

NOTE:  I kind of wish she'd let us list one of our least favorite things.  Just a thought.

A few plans for the rest of the week:   Church tomorrow, working in the workshop, Sav-A-Life on Monday, community band starts again Tuesday.  I've got a doctor's appointment Friday. 

A peek into my day...  Ran in my first ever Woodstock 5k this morning. It's the biggest race put on by Anniston Runner's Club.  I'd run races with a couple hundred people, but never more than 1,000.  This was more like a festival with a race thrown in.  I finished in 57:42;  ahead of the 90-year old and the chick who cheated on her time card at the Gamecock Gallup last year.  Yes, I'm still mad about that.  I'm already looking forward to next year.

My arch nemesis 90-year old Mr. Smallwood.