Monday, January 29, 2018


I could not resist blogging this today as it is a great piece of information and I have been reflecting on days gone by and how I so enjoyed some of our fun antics and loved playing with the neighbors.  Yes times have changed and people to but there were some great memories in time.
George Carlin's wife died early in 2008 and George followed her, dying in July 2008. It is ironic George Carlin - comedian of the 70's and 80's - could write something so very eloquent and so very appropriate. An observation by George Carlin:
The paradox of our time in history is that we have taller buildings but shorter tempers, wider Freeways, but narrower viewpoints. We spend more, but have less, we buy more, but enjoy less. We have bigger houses and smaller families, more conveniences, but less time. We have more degrees but less sense, more knowledge, but less judgment, more experts, yet more problems, more medicine, but less wellness.
We drink too much, smoke too much, spend too recklessly, laugh too little, drive too fast, get too angry, stay up too late, get up too tired, read too little, watch TV too much, and pray too seldom.
We have multiplied our possessions, but reduced our values. We talk too much, love too seldom, and hate too often.
We've learned how to make a living, but not a life. We've added years to life not life to years. We've been all the way to the moon and back, but have trouble crossing the street to meet a new neighbor. We conquered outer space but not inner space. We've done larger things, but not better things.
We've cleaned up the air, but polluted the soul. We've conquered the atom, but not our prejudice. We write more, but learn less. We plan more, but accomplish less. We've learned to rush, but not to wait. We build more computers to hold more information, to produce more copies than ever, but we communicate less and less.
These are the times of fast foods and slow digestion, big men and small character, steep profits and shallow relationships. These are the days of two incomes but more divorce, fancier houses, but broken homes. These are days of quick trips, disposable diapers, throwaway morality, one night stands, overweight bodies, and pills that do everything from cheer, to quiet, to kill. It is a time when there is much in the showroom window and nothing in the stockroom. A time when technology can bring this letter to you, and a time when you can choose either to share this insight, or to just hit delete.
Remember to spend some time with your loved ones, because they are not going to be around forever.
Remember, say a kind word to someone who looks up to you in awe, because that little person soon will grow up and leave your side.
Remember, to give a warm hug to the one next to you, because that is the only treasure you can give with your heart and it doesn't cost a cent.
Remember, to say, 'I love you' to your partner and your loved ones, but most of all mean it. A kiss and an embrace will mend hurt when it comes from deep inside of you.
Remember to hold hands and cherish the moment for someday that person will not be there again.
Give time to love, give time to speak! And give time to share the precious thoughts in your mind.
And always remember, life is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by those moments that take our breath away.

Thursday, January 11, 2018


2018 has arrived with a blast.  I have not written in awhile, because I have been spending my time reflecting, laughing, enjoying peace, being close to God, quiet time and calmness.  Hmmm beautiful sunrises, sunsets, and just resting.

I have been in Clear Lake Iowa.  Our family rents a house up there during Christmas and New Years.  I enjoy sometime to sit on a couch, bed to sleep in and time to rest.  What do I gain you say?  Well, in my reflections of the time I spent I experienced many mysterious happenings.  As I was driving home I thought oh my I am not ready to come home to a home under construction.  There are things and stuff everywhere.  I live out of suitcase.  When the floor and wall is completed it will be nice and we will purge and goodwill some possessions.  It is a new beginning and I will set sail on some great organization and wonderful meetings and classes.  We are extremely busy getting ready for the new year.  2017 has been a rough year but I am looking forward to all the great things God has in store for all of us and the animals in 2018.  He knows the plan and we will follow that  to the best of our ability.

Reflections have been meeting wonderful people.  I met some very friendly and nice people.  I drove down to the lake everyday except the real cold days and then I watched it the lake on TV.  I received a beautiful homemade shirt from my grandson and a set of wine glasses.  Each was painted with I love you to the moon and back.  What a special gift from a very special little boy.   I slept and I had some very comforting dreams, and experienced some very comforting gifts.  I will take many great memories away this year and treasure them for the rest of my life.  I am so grateful I was able to spend time there with my grandson, son, Christine, my husband and a special time as we worked and played with Angie and Lexi.  We engaged in activities at Christmas by the Lake, swimming, sledding and shopping.   Just admiring the beauty of the lake.

I am working on moving forward and getting many items accomplished and having a great year.  You see since I have gotten older those beautiful reflective moments mean so much to me.  I enjoy me time as I continue to give back to others.  I enjoy my time at church worshiping and praising God.  I enjoy visiting with the people in the stores on the street and all the places we attended.  One of my favorite activities was my grandson delivering candy canes to the people on the street in the stores, to the police and firefighters.  Then we delivered cookies and a homemade Gingerbread house to the nursing home.  God thank you for the beautiful time with these people and the beautiful lake.

Thursday, December 14, 2017


Life has been busy!  I know I keep saying that but it is true. This time of year I take lots of time for me.  I bath in the quiet by the lake.  I enjoy church in Clear Lake and I just sit and read.  Yes we are in our new house in Clear Lake and it is very homey.  Christmas by the Lake was fun.  But alas I got the crud and was sick for a few days after the event.  I got 13 to 15 hours of sleep!  Much needed time.  I am almost finished Christmas shopping.   I have a couple more things to get.  The tree is decorated and the house looks like Christmas.  What about our trips??

Dale and I spent a week in Illinois well, actually we stayed a Lake Geneva.  He received a week of training.   Home for a little while.  Rika went to Missouri and we went to Clear Lake.  Angie spent a week in Ill for training.  She to stayed in Lake Geneva.   She came home and they went to the Newsboys concert.  Next day off to Missouri to look at a horse for the program.  We brought back a part Gypsy mare and miniature donkey.   Well so January and Feb will be filled with trips to Ill, Mn and much more training.  Then March will take us to Nebraska for more training.   I will relish in the time I have in Clear Lake and enjoy each day.  I am looking forward to that quiet time.  I am excited to see them learn and grow in their jobs but Christmas is a time for me.  

What about our trips?  Lots of learning, growing and peaceful moments.  I have enjoyed my time on all the trips and look forward to many more.  I pray for a mild winter.  Hard to drive when the weather is bad.

So on this day I wish you a very Merry Christmas and may God give you the time you need in peace and solitude.

Wednesday, November 29, 2017

Life before Christmas

The trees are decorated, the houses are all lit up.  The stores are bustling with many people.  We have finished with Black Friday and now it is Cyber Monday.  Life before Christmas can be exhausting.  Rushing here and there and everywhere to get just the right gift for the right someone. 

Thanksgiving is completed at our house and now it is time to reflect and pray.  I am ready for my December break and sitting by the lake.  This year will be different, we are in a new house.  The experience will be interesting as we have chosen this house with only seeing the outside.   Pictures are showing a nice place but until you get inside you don't know.  I am excited yet anxious.  

Life before Christmas at the farm means very little decorating.  We don't have room for much.  There are few little things but nothing big.  Rika is leaving the end of this week and we travel to Clear Lake for Christmas by the Lake and my rest time begins.  I will mail out Christmas Cards and decorate the house for Christmas.  I have a grant due in the middle of the month but beyond that I will shop, play, watch TV and rest.   Slowing down for me is huge during this time of year.  We have gone 100 miles an hour for so many months it is time for me to reflect and think about how I want my 2018 to look.  God is the planner and I look for the many ways he is guiding me in my life.  

Life before Christmas is figuring how to celebrate with the animals and the children.  Teaching them the true meaning of Christmas.  I will enjoy my time alone and with friends.  It will be a joyous holiday season for me.  

As I sit back and listen to the music and listen to the pastor I realize I am in control of only my thoughts and emotions and I will make the best of my time away and at home this holiday season.

I wish all of you a very Merry Christmas and Happy New Year.  God's Blessings to all of you.

Tuesday, November 21, 2017


Thanksgiving will soon be here.  Just 2 more days and we will be eating turkey around the table.  We will be chatting with our friends and family and sometimes these moments can be very stressful.  We make the best of it as it is one of the times of the year that we get together.  What if!!!! What if it was an ideal situation!!!!!  What would that look like to you????     What would be the conversation???  How would you act????  What is the most memorable moments you can share?????  What if things were different and we could all be thankful and get along?????  What if there was no hate, no anger, no judgements?????  What would your thanksgiving look like???

Mine would be thankful for the times we have spent together as family and friends.  I would feel truly blessed for the times I was able to learn new things.  I would be forever grateful my family could be with me as I was baptized this year.  I would be grateful for the time I was able to spend with our clients, our horses, cats, rabbit and dog.  I would be grateful for the time I spent with volunteers and all they have accomplished this year.  I am grateful for the time I have been able to look ahead to the next year and what it has to offer.   I am so grateful for the memorable times I can spend with my grandson.

On this Thanksgiving I pray that everyone will be together and it will be a happy time.  Happy, Happy Thanksgiving.

Thursday, November 16, 2017

New Meanings, New Changes

Just when you think you have the world by the tail, the tail catches you and there you go down the path of changes, lessons and learning. 
The holiday season is growing closer and it will have new meaning and new changes.  Thanksgiving and Christmas will not be the same.  Our family will celebrate Thanksgiving but in a different house in a different way.  Christmas will be different as our family celebrates it at a different house in Clear Lake.  Our family attends a church in Clear Lake and we enjoy the time we spend at this church.  It has taken on a life of its own and we love to go to church at Agape.
ASPIRE is experiencing some new meanings and new changes.  Rika is going to a new home soon.  The team will evaluate a new horse for the program.  ASPIRE is looking at different options for classes and how to bring more students and volunteers in the door.  Sustainability is on our minds.  ASPIRE is in a new phase with new staff and new meanings and lots of changes. 
Family is experiencing some loss.  Grief is never easy and all too frequently we push it aside and think let’s get on with life but it is never a good thing to push it aside.  We need to experience it, walk through it and meet up on the other side of grief.  We know our lives will change forever but we don’t know at the time how that will look.  People often ask why.  There are no answers only faith can be our guide.  We don’t understand why only know that we are strong and need lots of support.  Sometimes it seems that life brings us to our knees and all we can do is pray.

New meanings and new changes means good will come from those new meanings and new changes.  Our lives are forever in a changing circle and where we end up only God knows that answer but in the mean time we just hop on and ride it out.  Listen for the lessons, learning, experience crying, laughing, sharing, hugging and praying all along life’s journey.  Be grateful, experience the blessing, be kind, be respectful and love with all your heart and the journey will be easier.  

Thursday, November 9, 2017

Life in the fast lane

Wow it has been a whirlwind year.  Lots of ups and downs and challenges facing us each and every day.  Hope you were able to join us for the events.  ASPIRE served 1,147 people and volunteers clocked over 2,800 hours of service.  As I wake each morning to see the sunrise and swim at the pool I am struck by the constant negativity I hear and see on the news.  It is a troubled world we live in and it breaks my heart there is so many people struggling and falling short.  It breaks my heart that there is so many people that struggle with grief.  It is a hard road out there.  But the good news is God is good all the time.  All the time God is good.  I have a lot of life to live and so much work to do.

Life in the fast lane means that all of us at ASPIRE are going to move fast to set this organization up for long term success.  We are moving fast to increase, change and motivate everyone that is involved.  We are going places this year because God has our back and we are working in his honor.  He is leading the path and opening new doors and I am excited but yes a little scared at the same time.  Look for news at it unfolds a little at a time.

I hope you will find ways to be Grateful and Thankful during this holiday season.  I will be spending some time in Clear Lake reflecting,growing in my faith and planning ahead for next year.  Get on board and see what 2018 has to offer.  God is good all the time as we move into the fast lane.

Thank you for being part of this journey.