Saturday, May 18, 2024

The Free Stomach Surgery From God And Other Stories

"For the protection of wisdom is like the protection of money,
and the advantage of knowledge is that wisdom preserves the life of him who has it."  --- Ecclesiastes 7:12


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Four years ago I began skipping a substantial evening meal, using lunchtime for that, instead. Why? Because of a general discomfort (nothing major) when I'd slip into bed at night. Who wants to take forever to fall asleep?

Problem solved. Well, as long as I'd eat only a small snack after lunch between 2:00 and 4:00 pm, call it done, then have nothing else. Nothing. Else.

Yeah, some days, being a mere mortal, it's ultra tempting to cheat. Er hem.

Anyway. I chalked this up to another one of those oh-so-merry adjustments one must make as she goes old lady ages.

Then beginning in 2023, if I eat too large of a lunch, well, oh dear. I suffer for it upon falling into bed. Wow. Major stomach issues. Nausea. Bleh. I can swallow my trusty Slippery Elm pill and an acidolphulus one, but still. (I'll spare you the sad, sorry-eyed details.)

And if I also consumed suddenly-I-can't-handle-foods like onions, hot sauce, salmon, jalapenos? Oh wow. Perfect storm for a stomach ache from heck.

Gah.

Eventually this came to me: it's as though God, Himself, gave me (unasked-for) one of those let's-shrink-your-stomach surgeries. 

Seriously. Unexpectedly, my stomach shrank (it feels like) and boy, how it punishes me if it stretches even a tad. Not with heartburn, just with this nauseating, dull ache.

Now let me be clear, lest anyone worry. When I follow all these new rules, have a tiny breakfast, a sensible lunch and an afternoon snack, hey! I'm fine. Healthy, all Life-is-incredible! And I sleep great.

But when I try to ignore this new Debra and pretend she's 30 again? Forget it. It's suffer in the dark time.

Why share this? Well, because it's hardly likely I'm the only one to experience this 'free surgery from God.' Often over the years I've read senior citizens usually eat less the older they become. 

So if this is also you, you've got company. You're not alone. And if you're having a difficult time accepting this, dare I say 'annoying challenge'? You're not alone in that, either.

Lately Tom and I, no longer the frolicking youngsters we once were, are making changes. Many. Changes. And we're trying to view each challenge as an interesting one to conquer, rather than whine, groan, complain or--Heaven forbid--ignore.

Ignoring the challenges of growing older? Not a good long-term plan. Not wisdom, either.

But with God who knows everything about the aging bodies of seniors? It's all very doable by following His instructions, obeying Him, especially when we'd rather pretend we can live as we once did.



"Despising something that has changed and will never go back to its previous condition is a waste of time. It can make a person bitter and resentful, but it doesn't have to if you choose to embrace it and let it become your new normal.
Joyce Meyer from her book, How to Age Without Getting Old

Sometimes Life just is what it is. What remains is to face the challenges with a brave heart and find other solutions, substitutions and make different choices.


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Earlier I shared at Facebook how I decided just not to open a too hard to loosen glass jar lid. Too hard on my wrist.
A friend from high school, Debbie, said her sister uses something like an old-fashioned coke bottle opener, though it's larger, to break the seal and it always works. 

I thought hey! I'll try that with my old bottle opener in the drawer. Oh my goodness. Why didn't I know about this decades ago? All it takes to open any jar now is for me to slip the pointy tip under the lid, pull up, then break the seal.

Just thought I'd pass that along.

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Yesterday we watched the sports movie, When The Game Stands Tall. Highly recommended (and how didn't we watch this years ago?)

And we loved Anthony Hopkins' new film, One Life, a very timely film, considering Today's hate-filled riots. Both these movies were based on true stories. Love those.


House Tour: A Charming 400 sq. foot studio apartment in NYC. (I really enjoyed listening to her share her stories.)



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And guess what? Next year my sister will be in an episode or two of The Chosen. She drove to Utah last month and was an extra in the filming of the Holy Week episodes. Cool, right? 
She's always up for adventures and in her heavenly book of details which God keeps, Corrine's book will probably contain 5 million whereas mine will have around 1,000. heh.
But that's ok! We're both having good times following the Life plans God mapped out for us. And that's what matters.








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Growing older? Remember--you're also growing kinder and wiser as you allow God to teach and remold you.


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Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 

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 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Wednesday, May 08, 2024

May This And That



1.) Springtime! Love it and color me grateful we had Hobbit Cottage repainted yellow. I wish it to be a bright, sunny beacon for all who walk past, especially. A light in a dark place (Today's world), so to speak.



The afternoon sun gleams upon my Prayer Garden's side of the house and oh! Lately I'm using a special suet which draws songbirds. How thoughtful of God to have created birdsong concerts outside our very own homes.


2.) Don't you love it when God gives you a new idea? Lately I hold my morning quiet times here:


The light is brighter in Real Life. 


After moving the chair back a tad, I sit upon the carpet beneath the sunlight-like lamp, facing my reference and non-fiction/fiction books. Usually instrumental 70's music softly plays and wow, how I anticipate these times!

3.) My current quiet time books? These:



And actually, I have quiet time throughout the day (most often on our front porch and yard) and even night (upon my bed when I awaken in the early hours). Anytime seems right for drawing near to God.


"Seek the Lord while He may be found."   --- Isaiah 55:6


4.) I forgot to mention something about Instagram, namely, I'm using it only for beautiful things. Inspirational things. 'Things of a good report' (as Philippians says).

I appreciate this idea. My other social media places are mixtures of everything good, bad or ugly, but Instagram remains my 'Calgon, take me away,' only-sweet, rejuvenating place.


5.) Tom and I rewatched The Electrical Life of Louis Wain and you know? I believe we enjoyed it even more the second time. Bittersweet (very), but we found Louis' life so creatively interesting.


6.) Here are plants that are toxic to cats, making it wise for cat owners to never own these (best) or to place them in impossible places for a cat to reach--

  • Aloe
  • Azalea
  • Chrysanthemum
  • Lily
  • Mistletoe
  • Poinsettia
  • Rhododendron
  • Tulip
  • Holly


7.) During my recent time of trauma, I kept a draft folder of helpful, timely online quotes. This proved so encouraging for me. Here was a favorite:


"Never doubt in the darkness what God showed you in the light."   ---Tim Sheets

Oh, the temptation during traumatic times to forget that!


8.)   ジ




9.) Books I finished reading in April:


Farewell by Horton Foote
The Curious Affair at Heron Shoals by Augusta Huiell Seaman (favorite of the month)
Best Friends by Mary Bard
The Mystery at Number Six by Augusta Huiell Seaman
Encyclopedia Brown Lends a Hand by Donald J. Sobol
The Girl Nextdoor by Augusta Huiell Seaman


10.) Another new morning ritual? Listening to someone funny, like this lady.
Anytime is right for visiting Stowe VT online in the autumn!
Here's what the eclipse was like in my neck of the woods. Oh, and this happened there, also... so cool!
And for anyone else who happens to be aging, this was rather nice.


11.) Remember those Bible verse cards I bought a couple years ago to use as bookmarks?




I began leaving one or two inside the books I give away. Perhaps they'll prove helpful to people and hey... everyone loves getting something for nothing.  シ






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Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be. 

 *** 

 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15

Monday, April 29, 2024

The Sweet Morning Out



"Therefore, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord, your labor is not in vain." --- 1 Corinthians 15:58.


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So Friday was Tom's birthday.

We decided to do something wild and different, so we ran errands together. シ (Ol' Debra's been quite the homebody this last forever.) 

After visiting the Salvation Army store (which reminded me how different I've become because gone were the giddy feelings of decades ago, though I did buy 2 cozy mysteries and a middle grade book), we drove to the library. Remember when I wrote how I'd wandered the halls and said good-bye to that no-longer-relevant-for-me place?

Yeah, well, I also said never say never. Heh.

Anyway, Tom had been unable to, recently, watch a movie online for he'd needed a library card number. I told him he could use mine, but I'd have to renew it, yet searching through my purse there in the parking lot, could I even find my card? Uh, no.

So we ambled past the windows of the former jail cells (always interesting), then to the circulation desk at the end of the hallway maze. Two folks helped us both get new cards. The woman, reading Tom's license, said, "Hmm.. April 26th. Wasn't that, oh, it's today! Happy birthday!" She looked at Tom. "Do you have any special plans?"

To which I quipped, "This is it." She and her male co-worker laughed aloud, then Tom added we'd order out for lunch and watch movies.

Afterward, we drove through a favorite neighborhood of adorable post-war houses. Then a slow drive past the unfinished Michael's store where men wearing hardhats worked (wasn't Michael's due to open in March?). 

Then Tom decided he'd like to check out Goodwill. Once there, I remained in the car with my new books (didn't want to overtax myself on this rare day out. Ha!), while he shopped.

Oh, and did I mention the sun sparkled in blue skies?

The day's remainder resembled our 'Saturdates', with added lovely birthday wishes from Facebook for Tom. Good food and movies and more sunshine.

A perfect kind of day, we agreed. One I, especially, needed after the past 7 emotionally-difficult weeks (though this past one, finally, felt more normal).

Truly, God can heal our hearts. If we choose healing over holding on, that is. And though, honestly, I feel like our recent tragedy whisked me from God College waaay back to the 5th grade in God Elementary School--still--I know better than to wallow long in pools of regret, guilt and grief.

That would help no one, especially me who wishes to end her Earth Journey with a life she can smile about for eons to come in Heaven.



"And after you have suffered a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to his eternal glory in Christ, will himself restore, confirm, strengthen, and establish you."   --- 1 Peter 5:10

Perhaps this will help someone: 2 weeks ago I felt so I-can't-do-anything-right-ish. Suddenly it came to me to write a list of things I've done right (or well) since 1978, the year I married (and felt like an adult). The list? An encouragement to my heart and a reminder of the things God's done through me to bless others. 
(Always fight the lies with truth!)


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On Tom's birthday, we watched the cutest, funniest Paul Hogan movie (from 2020). Still makes me smile to think about it! The Very Excellent Mr. Dundee. I can't even recall any warnings about it to pass along to you.  ツ

I so enjoyed Ariel's latest video








Please remember: My posts are always about more than they appear to be.
 
 *** 

 "For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses." ... Matthew 6:14,15