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22 June 2008

A Prayer Request...

....The camera and lenses used to take many of the pictures on this blog is no longer available to me. Lastnight it and all of my camera accessories were stolen. A prayer for peace...right now there is the feeling of being violated and a lot of anger.... It was my most precious belonging...

18 June 2008

Feel a Bit Like I'm....


...Drowning...


I haven't disappeared.... I just feel a little as if I'm drowning..... My chemistry class is a rapid fire pace and I am realizing how much I was not taught last semester. There are a lot of changes happening at work and as of this past week I am now frantically hunting for a new place to live. Life is crazy...Life is chaotic...but life is good........ I have fun pics and quotes to add soon...

A Trip Long Ago...

Many weeks ago I went to hide at my sister's place. On my way back I had a choice to make. Either rush home and try to make it to church (I would probably be tooooooooo late). OR make it a leisurely trip and enjoy God's beauty. Guess which I chose:) The second! WoW!

I had noticed a bright field of yellow flowers with grazing cows on my way up the mountain. But alas, I had no film. On the way down the mountain Sunday I had an entire roll, my camera, my regular lens, my wide angle, and my zoom. I was armed and ready. The first stop was the cows and the field of yellow flowers. In the right side of the picture of the cows you will see a black and white cow. The closer I got the closer she got. I later realized she was a mother and there were four babies nearby. I'm glad there was a fence between the two of us.

From there it was easy. I took whatever road looked interesting. I took pictured of fields, pastures, trees, farmland, barns, and cattle. I found an interesting barn with a tree so I decided to pull over and take a picture. There was a little white house across the street and on the porch sat an old couple. They were rocking away. I walked over and asked if it was okay for me to take some pictures of their barn. They smiled and said sure. They man had no idea why I would want to. The barn had been there since his grandfather had the property. They then proceeded to tell me about their life, their family, and invite me to lunch. Had I not had lunch plans with a friend in Greensboro I would have stayed for the family get together. All of the children and grandchildren were bringing lunch over after church.

From there it was one more stop. An exit covered with wildflowers. A trivia question for you.... (Mama you cannot participate!) Who started the wildflower by the highway program? What state did it begin in? Who can answer?

The exit of choice was filled with white daisies and red poppies with a few random flowers mixed in. I met the man who takes care of the flowers. He was kind and about my age. He said he assumed he didn't need to tell me not to pick the flowers since I was being careful to not step on any. By the way, for those of you who don't know....it is a federal offense to pick the flowers off the side of the interstate! So below are some of the pictures. I just had fun. I love flowers. Obviously. It was nice to be able to enjoy the sunshine with my Minolta in hand. Enjoy.




10 June 2008

One Who is Greatly Missed...


"Beautiful young people are accidents of nature, but beautiful old people are works of art." Eleanor Roosevelt

I found this quote a couple of weeks ago and wrote in my planner for today. Today is the anniversary of the homegoing of a beautiful "older" woman. Her name was Pearl Cotton (a good southern name). She was my "Grandmama." I'm intrigued by the strength of character and conviction shown by Eleanor Roosevelt. It's the same strengths that I saw in Grandmama. She was a leader in the family. She made it through some rough times in her life but with her head held high and acknowledgement to who brought her through. She and I were a lot in common. She seemed to understand my struggles more than others. We seemed to share a lot of the same.

When things were really bad she always "had a feeling" and prayers for me were in her heart. She used to tell me "When you feel the need to pray for someone-Do It! No matter where you are or what you are doing. Stop then and pray. God put them on your heart for a reason." I try to stay true to that advice. Her following of that sure helped me out of some major scrapes.

I have an earnest respect and enjoyment of Gaither Homecoming....the old hymns. It can be traced back to laying on her couch watching it in the evenings. I used to runaway to her house. I would go for weeks without sleeping and there was something about her house and the back guest bed that allowed me to sleep every time. The peacefulness I felt when I entered the house, the calm that surrounded you in her presence... the smell of waking up to scrambled eggs with sausage (cooked into the eggs :) ), the calm of sitting on her deck looking at the azaleas and watching the lizards crawl on the brick wall.

I have my memories. Amy digging under the deck with a tennis racket to find the tennis ball but instead finding half of a snake that grandmama had cut in half earlier in the day. Eating her amazing sweet potato pie (for which we still don't have the actual recipe). Going to the pizza restaurant with her, Granddaddy, my cousins, and Amy and getting my finger stuck in the straw hole on the plastic lid. Granddaddy laughed and Grandmama was scared. She used to sew us little outfits and even adapted them to the need to hide bra straps as we got older. The need to cover envelopes with stickers came from her. There was nothing better than opening my mailbox to see an envelope with stickers. I knew it was an uplifting and yet honest letter from her.

She was one of my best friends and it's still hard. Things happen and I want to pick up the phone to tell her. I'm going to grad school and she doesn't get to see it. One day I will be getting married and she won't be there. There will be a baby one day who won't ever get to meet his/her great grandmama. She pushed me to do more and be more and accept nothing less than the best that I could do. Now she isn't here to see it. I like to think that those in heaven can see the good things that are happening for their loved ones down here....but this is often debated. Especially since she is the one who told me to "Get off the fence" and go back to school; I would like to think that as I read my acceptance letter to grad school she knows and as I walk across the stage for my doctorate degree in my funny robe and hat that she is cheering me on. She was always proud of me even when I struggled to be proud of myself.

I miss you Grandmama.....more than you will ever know. Thanks for all of your support over the years and your unwillingness to allow me to place God as anything other than first in my life. I hope to one day be as great an influence on some one's life are you were and still are on mine. I love you Gr'mama Pearl.

Her verse- "I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in the truth." - III Jn 4

03 June 2008

Saturday Mornings

Saturday morning is the day of the week that excites me the most. It begins with a walk through the farmer's market. (One of the perks to where I live:) )People are happy, people are friendly, and people aren't rushed. You can find plants, fresh flowers, vegetables, fruits, soaps, jewelry, honey, fresh meats, cheeses, eggs, dairy, goat milk products, ostrich meat, and the best sourdough bread I have ever eaten. The pictures are of snapdragons I bought from an old farmer who wanted to make people smile. It was a large beautiful bouquet for the bargain price of three dollars. Talking to him and his family was even more enjoyable.
About a month ago multiple tornadoes came through our county. They wiped out parts of the farmer's market. As you drive in you can see the devastation to the trees and the surrounding homes and properties. One of the buildings of the market was greatly damaged. Everyone went back wondering how things would change. There is an even greater sense of community now than before. They have gathered around each other and pitched in to help those that suffered from the tornadoes. There is a sense of commradore that I think we are often missing.
I go to school each day and watch students go head to head for the best grade. In doing so they often trample others. How much greater would we be as a community and a country if we were more willing to reach out and help those around us. How often do we see a need and assume that someone else will help. Many times, for me, help has come from unexpected places. I have found that it is a big blessing for the one who receives and the giver. Take a stand. Make a commitment to lend a helping hand. Often something that seems small to you will seem grande to someone in need. Be aware. Take notice. Pay attention to those around you. See what oppurtunities there are out there for you to bless others.