Thursday, November 28, 2019

Happy Thanksgiving!

"Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good, for his steadfast love endures forever!"...Psalm 107:1


Happy Thanksgiving to all my faithful readers! Upon my Gratitude List is each of your names and I especially thank those who take the time to encourage me. 

May each of you be especially blessed with much peace today!


Oh! And anyone have an extra 5 hours to spend? シ 

You may also absolutely love this audible book --and I don't even like audible books! (I've never read every single word of a book in my life. I skip any portions I find not-interesting.)

But this book? Oh my. I didn't fast-forward any of it. Marvelous detailing of Heaven. Simply marvelous.


And guess who had another anniversary this past Monday? Yes, Tom and I have officially been married 41 years. Oh my--it doesn't seem possible all those years have sailed past.

But then, our yesterdays never seem all that far away.

Speaking of being married a long time, have you seen the new Dolly Parton episode on Netflix with Gerald McRaney and Delta Burke? It's the only episode so far that I can recommend (I've started a few) and my, my, my. I do recommend it. (There is a small smattering of 'language', though.)

Otherwise? Very special. Indeed. Like watching a book rather than reading one.

(Look up 'Dolly Parton's Heartstrings' at Netflix. Click on the episode titled, 'If I Had Wings'.)

"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, November 25, 2019

Where She No Longer Minds Dark Days. (Well, Not As Much.)

"For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whoever believes in Him will not perish, but have everlasting life."  ... John 3:16

So last Wednesday our (fun) local weather guy moaned said, "Man, we've had a dark week so far. No rays of sunshine made it through!".

I paused. Thought, "Really? Those days seemed sunny to me. Hmm. Weird." Then it came to me: God's blessed me so much lately that it's like His light inside has brightened my outside world as well.

Awesome, right? Especially since dark days used to royally mess with my mind. Also, I believe the difference is, since last year, I no longer allow myself to complain about wintry weather. Truly, try this one to see if it works for you.

Anyway, God keeps leading me to the coolest Youtube videos! Seriously. My heart's joy has increased at least 50% and I feel so free these days while meditating upon God's wonderful good news. 

Need some Youtube good news for yourself today?  Watch this video, especially if you're still grieving since a loved one went to Heaven. What a powerful anointing was upon this pastor as he shared his (15 minute) story.

And if you're not certain that your relative/friend made it to Heaven? May God comfort you with this verse--

"... For everyone who calls on the name of the Lord will be saved."   ... Romans 10:13

'Everyone who calls on the Lord', even those who knew Him not as friend during their decades, yet called upon the Lord on their way out. 

Sadly, I've known Christians who find that sooo unfair, which hey! Reminds me of the parable where workers complained they worked longer and should get paid more, but the landowner said--

"‘I am not being unfair to you, friends. Didn’t you agree to work for a denarius? Take your pay and go. I want to give the one who was hired last the same as I gave you. Don’t I have the right to do what I want with my own money? Or are you envious because I am generous?’"   ... from Matthew 20

And oh my. I'm so grateful God is God and the clueless ones lacking in godly compassion, are not.

We will be surprised by some folks we spy in Heaven! And if that thought bothers, irritates us, may we humble ourselves, asking God to forgive us, to infuse us with a true understanding of eternity and His incredible, passionate love. 

You know, the most important thing of all.

Remember: Pride says, "I've got this all figured out. There's nothing left to learn."

"He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart..."  ... Ecclesiastes 3:11


And this video? 62 vintage Photos of Life in America During the 1960's?  It made me smile bigtime! 

It assured me much has not changed since the 1960's, for many of these old-fashioned towns still look nearly the same--and--tons of people still love--

Family vacations.
Old cars.
Neon signs.
Eating in diners.
Comfort food.
Walking downtown.
Small businesses.
Dressing-up. Vintage fashion.
Family time and much, much more. 

I mean, often we feel as though these Times are wildly different than 60 years ago, but are they really? (And what are we doing to bring back the rarer good stuff?)


"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

Thursday, November 21, 2019

I'm Hearing-Impaired, But I Think It's Cool Because --

" ... they go about about from house to house being ..... gossips and busybodies, saying what they should not."   ... 1 Timothy 5:13


So back when the Earth was young (heh), my family and I discovered I'd lost half my hearing in my right ear. Measures were taken, but nothing improved (for long), so like many folks, I learned tricks to handle this loss.

No big deal. 

And all these decades later? Well, let's just say when I wear headphones, I can't hear a thing from the right side. So hey, who knows? Maybe I've got a 90% right-ear hearing loss by now.

But am I freaked-out? Nope. 

I get along fine, sometimes even wondering if maybe my other ear has 120% hearing ability.

Only while in crowds is my hearing a problem, but you know? I've become kinda clever at reading lips. It's fun, even, and I practice sometimes by turning the sound way down on the tv which means, hey. I'm also easily amused.

Yet this morning at the cafe I recalled my favorite reason why my wimpy right ear doesn't bother me.

While reading my book, three women in this very tiny cafe sat and gossiped. You can tell when it's gossip because people speak in hushed tones with sentences starting with, "Then she said .....," and "I couldn't believe she walked over to ...," and "Everybody looked shocked when she ....". Heads shake from side to side. Eyes roll.

You know. And well, Honey, God hates gossip so I figure so should I. 

In fact, if I'm ever seated with a group of gossiping women, oh man. I'll just have to interrupt and speak stuff like, "Oh, that's so sad. Perhaps she was acting out of hurt? Joyce Meyer says, 'Hurting people hurt people,' and I think that makes much sense."

And that's just one reason I'm not popular. But oh well.

Anyway, I silently prayed for the 3 women, 2 of whom I count as kind acquaintances. Then, very discreetly, pulled lots of my hair over my left ear which I plugged with my index finger so I could--oh joy! Read without the uncomfortable distraction of gossip, only a soft, indistinguishable murmur. 

Oh blessed, gossip-free silence! And how I appreciated, again, this hearing loss which God enables me to handle. 

He cares about the details, about me, and He makes certain that I miss out on no good thing. Just many bad ones, especially as I choose not to participate with darkness.

"An evildoer listens to wicked lips, and a liar gives ear to a mischievous tongue."   ... Proverbs 17:4

Unsure whether gossip is wrong? Please go here.


Oh Youtube! You really are remarkable. シ

Did you know Youtube has free audible books? Or that you can watch old episodes of the show, It's a Miracle?

My, my, my. What I keep discovering there!


"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

Tuesday, November 19, 2019

The Life I'm Giving My Guardian Angels

"Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve for the sake of those who are to inherit salvation?"  ... Hebrews 1:14


Since last week? I've watched perhaps 20 hours of Kat Kerr on Youtube and my, my! Picture me with my socks blessed off. 

So many questions answered, so many wispy experiences, confirmed, as actually having happened (I'd wondered, "Had I imagined them?").

Anyway, Kat said when we reach Heaven our guardian angel will describe the times he rescued us and already I'm planning to interrupt and say, "Oh! Those were your fingers on my back when I nearly fell backward while up on a chair, right?"  ツ

Well, this morning while at my table at the cafe, I sipped my decaf then stared at the chair facing me and thought, "Hmm. I wonder if my guardian angel is sitting there, staring at my face? Or is he standing behind me?"

And you know? I'm asking myself, "Just what kind of a life am I giving my guardian angel?"

An adventure-less, boring, yawn-worthy one? 
A no-wisdom life, forcing him to rescue me constantly from careless accidents/choices?
One where he plugs his ears lots because I argue often? Or covers his eyes because of what I see on tv?
A people-bug-me-so-I'll-just-constantly-stay-home life?


Well, today I'll consider ways to help my guardian angel live a life here he can remember with smiles. One he'll someday retire from while thinking, "We had a good run, didn't we? Debra and I experienced God's blessings galore while living a life of sharing---

good news,

--and more."

Whew. That's a lot, right? And may I, beginning today, pay closer attention to how I live this Life given me by God, Himself. Not just for my angel's sake of course--but for your sake, as well.

Unsure about Kat Kerr? I recommend having your own 20 hour tv fest of her teachings before saying anything negative about her. Truly, I do recommend that.


And hey! Have you tasted any of these Wahlburger products yet?--

Tom brought home a package of hamburger patties (marked down in price. These babies are expensive.) and wow! They were remarkably great. Remarkably. Great.

Oh, and Tom and I were sad to see The Wahlburgers show, end. Always, it made us laugh--and who doesn't appreciate that these days?


"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

Saturday, November 16, 2019

How To Never Waste (Or Lose) Another Dollar. Ever.

"Still other seed fell on good soil, where it produced a crop--a hundred, sixty or thirty times what was sown."   Matthew 13:8


So. My driver's license expired last March, but have I renewed it? Nope. 

Why not? 1.) My groceries (and all else) come right to my red front door, so why travel to get them?, 2.) Tom drives us around, and 3.) Subconsciously I didn't want to make it official I'd turned 60.  シ

But finally I decided, "Hey. Eventually I'll need to drive (and possibly fly after 2020), right? Better go over to the Department of Motor Vehicles and get my license, an enhanced one."

So yesterday I gathered all papers/forms they stated online that I'd need, plus a couple extras since that's how I roll. I called for a taxi which arrived in 5 minutes(!); the cabbie even said I could sit in front. An older man, (likely my age, heh), he'd driven taxis in our city for 24 years.

Our DMV is located in a sad, rather far away part of town, made drearier by grey clouds, bare trees and dirty snow, but I tried to stay positive, even asking God for favor, because Honey, don't we all need favor at the DMV?

Before the cab driver left, I asked if he'd pick me up in one hour. Offering me his card so I could call him, I said, "I'm the only person in the world without a cell phone and most likely there's no pay phone here" (there wasn't), "so if you could come at 10 that would be wonderful." 

Cheerfully he agreed to be there and I gave him a $2 tip like I give all drivers. He seemed grateful.

But uh-oh.  Ol' Debra still does not have a valid license. 

The unsmiling woman behind the desk said my birth certificate is a hospital-issued one ("just a trinket,"), not the state-issued kind.

"But I've used this for 60 years and have never had a problem," I said.


"In fact, this is what I used to get my New York driver's license."

Crickets chirped.

Gah. She just grabbed a tablet page and scribbled down the phone number to call for a real birth certificate. Maybe I thanked her, I'm not sure. Not feeling real thankful, I doubted whether God's favor was even valid down at the DMV.  ツ

Fortunately I brought a book with me, yet that hour still felt like 5 eternities. Happily, though, the cabbie arrived a tad before 10:00.

Now, the temptation? To think, "Man. I spent all that taxi money for nothing. Still I have no new license."

But you know? For years I've thought a different way. And in this case, I chose to sow my money into that man's family. To believe he'd use it wisely, to purchase necessities for himself and those he loves.

For when I sow money in that way? I reap back what I gave. I never lose a penny, never go without, never face a need God cannot meet.

Even if someone stole money from me, (however it happened, wouldn't matter), I'd reap lovely things from God if I--with a cheerful, trusting, forgiving heart--sowed as a seed what they snatched. From inside my head and heart, simply gave it to them.

You know, so God could return it to me as a touched-by-Him, golden harvest which always, He does.

"Don’t be misled—you cannot mock the justice of God. You will always harvest what you plant."   ... Galations 6:7


P.S. If you're thinking, "Taking Uber would be cheaper," well, you've missed my point. Also, you've forgotten I don't (by choice) use a cell phone. heh.

P.P.S. And I'm in the process of getting a birth certificate. I went through the DMV website and this cold, but sunny morning Tom and I will have a couple papers notarized at our bank as a second step.


Speaking of Youtube (my last post), I saw John C. Maxwell there and thought, "Oh! It's been a few years since I heard him. Let's listen now." 
My, my, my. Laughed and cried and came away inspired. Challenged, convicted. What a blessing he is!

Here's the one I listened to, first. Then there were others. And others. ツ

And awww..... did you read this about Patrick Duffy? So sweet.


"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, November 11, 2019

November This and That

(Collage by Brea Rose Soap Garden.)

1.) Oh wow! Last week outside the cafe window, something happened which I'd never seen in all my 60 years. A super tall tree across the street dropped at least 400 leaves in 2 minutes! Barely could I believe my eyes.

Probably there's a scientific reason. We'd had snow the previous night and now sunshine glowed upon the leaves. But whatever, what a sight to see leaves pouring down from a tree!

2.) I'd needed to order some stair-tread-tape for our outdoor steps when oh! Via local real estate online I spied some decorative treads which I simply had to order (after reading many favorable comments). 

Here are the ones I bought--

(Nifty, right?)

3.) Last week I heard this wonderful song by Casting Crowns, called Thrive. (Go here to listen.) Made my day! Here are the lines I especially appreciated:

We know we were made for so much more 
Than ordinary lives.
It's time for us to more than just survive:
We were made to thrive.

Yes, indeed!

4.) Even though you (or I) never attended Niagara Falls High School, you may enjoy this special 40th reunion video, especially if you, like me, went to high school in the 70's. Over the years I've watched this 4 or 5 times and always it returns me to my own high school days--the good ones--with smiles.

(I enjoyed the funny stories ("this whole table!"). If you watch and like the video, let me know, ok?)

                           (My favorite photo of A.B. Simpson. Isn't it cool?)

5.) Lately I'm reading stuff by an old-time 'God's General,' A.B. Simpson, and oh! I keep nodding in agreement and feeling blessed. 

Here's a devotional book containing his writings which you can add to your Kindle for free.

6.) Naomi gave us 2 vintage stretched-canvas paintings and (miraculously since our house is small) I found the perfect place for each. I'll share 1 here--

                       (As with all my photos, the real thing looks nicer.)

7.) Oh! Over at Facebook there's another collage artist I appreciate. (Find her here.)

(We're due for 10 inches of snow tonight, but I'm still insisting upon sharing these autumn collages.)  シ  

8.) I naively assumed finding terrific (not well-known) vintage movies for you at Youtube, free, would be simple, but good gracious! I'm discovering many are more morally disturbing than Today's films(!) Seriously, and hey, I refuse to recommend stuff that'll mess-up your head.  シ

So I'll just do the best I can, ok? Here are 3 films which won't corrupt your mind too much. Heh.

The Second Woman

Fred MacMurray: The Guy Next Door (documentary)

Gracie Allen: The Better Half (documentary)

9.) So I'm officially at that age where even half a cup of coffee keeps me awake at night. 


But am I grabbing for sleeping medication so I can still stubbornly drink real coffee? Uh, nope. Haven't heard God ok that.

Instead, determined to create an awesome-as-coffee recipe for hot chocolate, I--over much time--developed this one, below. I drink 2 cups daily, except when I visit the cafe where their decaf tastes even better than the real thing(!)

So here you go. (All amounts are approximate.) 

Debra's Hot Chocolate

In an average mug, place--

3/4 Tbl. baking cocoa
1/4 Tsp. sugar (optional)
1/2 Tsp. imitation vanilla
1 heaping Tbl. powdered creamer
1 envelope of Stevia
2 Tbl. almond milk (or any milk)

Add boiling water to mug. Stir. Enjoy.

10.) And I'll leave you with this smile, something in an area where I must watch my own attitude. Er hem.


"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, November 06, 2019

My Creepy Dream

"Do all things without grumbling or questioning, that you may be blameless and innocent, children of God without blemish in the midst of a crooked and twisted generation, among whom you shine as lights..."  ...Philippians 2:14,15


So I watched a couple Sid Roth episodes where folks encouraged us to pay attention even to our 'pizza dreams'. "God may wish to tell us something through them", they explained.

I was intrigued. Into the drawer beside my bed I placed a pen and a little Dollar Tree tablet so I could scribble dream details. You know, just in case. 

Well, two nights later, oh my! I awoke from a dream with only one scene--

Standing in our kitchen, I spied something slowly rise from the center of our stove top. From across the room I realized it was the back of a head(!) Then just as the head cleared the enamel to expose a neck, it swiveled toward me and I saw the face. Mine! I gasped and awoke.

(Ha! I'll wager none of you ever had that dream.)  ツ Creepy, right?

Well, as the Sid Roth folks said to, I asked God to help me interpret the dream. And you know? This is what I believe it meant--

I needed to rise above my recent annoyances with things-gone-wrong around my house.The slow kitchen drain, suspicious carpet spots, stuck kitchen window, the odd smell, etc. They'd occupied my mind far more than God's goodness, so I needed to fix what I could, accept what I couldn't, all while basking in gratitude rather than frustration.

I mean, after all: there's always something, right? Always something designed to keep us complaining rather than praising. It's time to stay above, rather than bogged down. To come up higher.

And you know? In the 9 days since that dream I've felt like a changed woman. Seriously!

Isn't it wild how often we must be reminded of principles already learned? How God desires we go deeper in our understanding, (and obedience), so we'll remember truths for, like, more than five days?

Complaining. Ack. Sometimes we cease complaining aloud about something, but does the complaint remain inside our hearts? 

I'm thinking that's where I'd gone. To that grey, misty place where the habit of joy can't quite break through.

So how amazing of God to snap me out of it by 1.) Making certain I came across those dream tv episodes, 2.) Allowing me to recall such an odd dream, and 3.) Helping restore me to a good ol' Debra kind of daily joy by pointing at where I'd gone wrong.

How wonderful of Jesus to correct us, to do whatever it takes to help us live in joy the life He died to give us. Whew.

" ... because the Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son."   ... Hebrews 12:6

Complaining. It blinds us to what's wonderful and cheats us out of the special day/life we could have had.


Do you ever watch the HGTV show, Good Bones? I mentioned it here years ago, but I'm still more addicted of a fan than ever. Mina and Karen decorate in a colorful way which will restore your faith in a modern-world-gone-clean-line-boring.

Another best thing? Prospective buyers walk through the houses without complaining(!)

I love their good-natured mother-daughter banter and oh my, I'll miss Karen's constant presence in the upcoming season, for she's retiring, yet will help with certain craft projects (I understand retiring, I do!). 

But already I'm telling myself to still expect to love this show even though, yes, it's taking a hit not having fun-loving, unique Karen in all the scenes as before.

To check out some of their color-filled rooms, 


" ... whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think about such things." "You will keep him in perfect peace he whose mind is stayed on you because he trusts in you."  ...Philippians 4:8, Isaiah 26:3

Sunday, November 03, 2019

For Those Who Have New Normals

“Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine.""So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day."  ... Isaiah 43:1, 2 Corinthians 4:16


Some folks won't let themselves love Autumn because it means Winter's sneaking down their lane, preparing to pounce. 

And I get that! I do.

But last year I didn't allow myself to complain about Winter and oh my, the shock! Those months held hundreds of pleasant hours and now I'm looking forward to snow and slowing down.

Wow. I should've tried that hushing my complaints eons ago. I know better than to moan about anything God has created. I do! (You should've heard me apologize to Him.) Gulp.

Today we've an icy wind, but still I continued The Great Twig Pick Up of 2019. Oh, the scary winds and rains of last Thursday night. Our high today is 42, but still my garden grows its red cherry tomatoes(!)

My annual grocery stock-up? It's nearly finished and I also double-checked my 'Clear Winter' wardrobe and called it Good. (Do you ever wish to talk wardrobes/seasonal palettes? Email me at and let's chat.)

And hey, did you know YouTube has tons of old black and white movies to watch, free? I even began a Favorite Youtube Movie List for you and here's what's there so far:

Phone Call From a Stranger


The Spiral Staircase

So if you needed a reason to anticipate Winter, there's one.  And my votives are stocked-up for burning in the fireplace below the tv. My books stare at me, begging to be reread.

One more wonderful Winter treat? I can ignore the fair-weather chores upon my Master Daily Task List. Skip right past them every day. Hooray!

And am I still, since June, tossing 10 items each week to the wind (and Salvation Army)? Yes, we're 220+ things lighter, with relief, not regret, and I'm committed to this till next June. 

Grace is all over this purging. Grace, and my celebrating that at least Naomi won't have to dispose of what I've released so far when Tom and I are old--or gone. 

Oh Grace! She's wise and lightens all loads with help and waves of anticipation, never dread.

Anyway, have you heard people talking about New Normals? Well, since turning 60 I've had my share, indeed--and have written to you only around half of them. 

But here's the thing: with each new normal, God reminds me He's brought me through every trial, every 'old normal' of the past. His record is flawless and no new normal can defeat Him.

He is stronger than ever, even though I am not. 
Even in 2019. 
And even though this world calls good, evil, and evil, good.

Even so, no lie (that we refuse to believe) will change Him or what He can do. And with our constant, joyful reliance upon Him (the key), no lies will knock us over, nor any new normal, either.

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Consistency!  It's a little like cheating. You go doing small things faithfully, month after month, and poof! You accomplish something huge. A task you previously believed you never could.

"Finally, be strong in the Lord and in his mighty power."   ... Ephesians 6:10

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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