Wednesday, September 7, 2011

tender mercies

yesterday, i found out that someone i love very much has stage three ovarian cancer. the shock that i felt was tremendous. as she told me it literally felt like someone was sucking the air out of my body. i felt so incredibly helpless as to what to say to try and console her. what does one say to make cancer better??

i consider myself to be a pretty spiritual person who believes that everything happens for a reason. but sometimes that reason is so hard to understand. and i found myself questioning the fairness of this diagnosis. why her?? why?? hasn't she gone through enough already in this life? she has seen more heartache and had more physical challenges in her less than 40 years than most people see in a lifetime. and if recovery is not part of her "plan" how are her two little girls supposed to go on without her??? these are the things that i pondered all afternoon.

later, on my way to work this little voice inside my head said to me "you need to stop and get some candy". there is a little candy store inside the mall that i pass on my way to work and i have been known to stop in occasionally. but yesterday i didn't really feel like candy. so i told the little voice no. then as i was walking in it spoke to me again so i decided to just go ahead and get some because otherwise i would be thinking about it all night.

there was only one lady working and i was the only customer. she asked me how my day was and instantly the voice said "tell her".

"no way" i told the voice. "i am not telling some strange lady my story". i should probably state that i am not crazy. i promise. i do not usually argue with myself or have voices that speak to me on a regular basis. promptly after telling the voice no it spoke even louder "tell her". so i did. i told her how heartbroken i was because of the diagnosis someone close to me had received. she looked at me and said " you go home and tell her that you spoke to someone tonight that had stage 4 ovarian cancer. had surgery, a complete hysterectomy and chemotherapy. twenty nine years later i am cancer free". she then went on to tell me some different herbal teas to recommend that helped her combat the side effects of chemo. i simply looked at her with tears streaming down my face. i was so overwhelmed. seeing the emotion she said simply "he sent you to me today. because you needed to hear my story".

yes!! yes!! i did need to hear her story. i needed the affirmation that my prayers were being heard. i needed to know that my heavenly father is mind full of me and my loved ones. that he knows what we are going through. just when you think that he doesn't hear you he is right there! he reached out to me and i almost missed it. i almost missed it because i tried to ignore, tried to fight the promptings of the still small voice. and i would have never heard the message he was trying to send me. "be still and know that i am god."

i know that this is a very personal story and some of you might be wondering why i would share it in such a public format. the answer is this; we are so quick to share stories of what goes wrong in our lives, the silly things that happen. the things that really won't make a difference in a month or two. why then should we keep the moments that really speak to us private. my hope is that someone else will find some inspiration from this story. maybe they feel that the phone lines have been cutt and that no one is on the other end. but i can promise you, the lines are not down. he is there and he is listening and he knows you. he knows the concerns of your heart. we just have to be willing to hear.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Why I Wish I Was Better At Photo Journalism

Last weekend, we went skiing/snowboarding together as a family for the first time.
In fact the only person in our family that has ever skied before is Larry.
Somehow, we left with no pictures at all of anyone on a ski or snowboard.
Why you might ask??
Because I am terrible at capturing the moment with a camera.
I take pictures before, but then think that preceding pictures will magically take themselves.
So while there are no pictures at all to prove it, we did in fact ski and snowboard.
We had a great time.
Larry loved getting back on the slopes.
I discovered that snowboarding is not for me. And will be eternally grateful to our friends for letting me borrowing their butt pads. It made my repeated falls bearable.
Brendan insisted on snowboarding rather than skiing. He loved it and wants to try again
Bella is a natural with skies attached to her feet. Her first run down the slope she didn't even wait for our friend that was helping her to get her snowboard clipped.
Brooke liked it as long as she didn't fall without her gloves on. And when she did, well let's just say I'm surprised she didn't cause an avalanche.
Lily really liked it but was not pleased that she couldn't just hop on a lift and go down the big hill.
With that said - enjoy the few pictures that we did manage to take

The kids outside the condo before we started the adventure
Brooke tubing

Lil's was meant to ride in a tube flying down the mountain
Brooke taking a spill but amazingly no tears accompanied it
Bell's spinning down the hill.
And no, there are not any pictures of Brendan tubing due to the level of soreness from his die hard snowboarding attempts the day before.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

When You Are Frozen In Your House This Is The Soup You Want!!

Creamy Chicken And Wild Rice Soup

chicken breasts 2-3
7 c water
1 1/3 cup uncooked wild rice
1 c chopped celery
1 c chopped onion
2 Tbs vegetable oil\or evoo
1 c sliced fresh mushrooms
2 Tbs chicken bouillon granules
3\4 t pepper (white pepper if you have it)
1\2 t salt
1\2 c margarine
3\4 c flour
4 c milk
3\4 c cooking white wine

cook rice according to package directions. place chicken in water and bring to a boil. simmer until chicken is no longer pink. meanwhile in a large pot cook celery, onion and mushrooms until tender. add rice, broth from chicken, bouillon, pepper and salt. simmer uncovered for 15 minutes. melt margarine in medium saucepan. stir in the flour until smooth. whisk in milk and cook till bubbly and thick. add some broth mixture to the milk mixture and continue to whisk. then add all the milk mixture to the broth mixture. add the chicken and white wine. cook for 15 mins.

Heaven in a bowl I promise :)