I got done reading "The Shack" by William Young. I can't even begin to tell you how amazing it was. Honestly, it touched my soul. I bahled !!! It is so beautifully written. I implore you all to read it ! If you have ever been mad, or hurt, or alone, or in pain.. a pain that has racked your very soul.. read this book. If you love your family, your god, nature... read this book. If you have faith, lack faith, want more, want less.... read this book. If you want love, or love to hate... read this book. If you want to forgive, or need to be forgiven.... read this book. I am speechless... for once in my life. It is just mind blowing... and you know what is funny.. it isn't like anything I haven't heard or read before. The author just puts it in a way that will forever reside in the shack of your soul. I have included some of my favorite passages... there were so many... this is only a few. But, by far my favorite is what he says at the beginning... "All us stumblers who believe 'Love' rules. Stand up and let it shine." This book will forever shine for me !!
"Oh child," spoke Papa tenderly. "Don't ever discount the wonder of your tears. They can be healing waters and a stream of joy. Sometimes they are the best words the heart can speak"
"Forgiveness is not about forgetting, Mack. It is about letting go of another person's throat."
"Mackenzie, the pattern of color and light is unique to each person; no two are alike and no pattern is ever the same twice. Here, we are able to see each other truly, and part of seeing means that individual personality and emotion is visible in color and light."
"So, I will see you again?" he asked hesitantly. "Of course. You might see me in a piece of art, or music, or silence, or through people, or in Creation, or in your joy and sorrow. My ability to communicate is limitless, living and transforming, and it will always be tuned to Papa's goodness and love."
"Love that is forced is no love at all."
"Does that mean," asked Mack, "that all roads will lead to you?" "Not at all," smiled Jesus as he reached for the door handle to the shop. "Most roads don't lead anywhere. What it does mean is that I will travel any road to find you."
"I've been talking to you for a long time, but today was the first time you could hear it, and all those other times weren't a waste, either. Like little cracks in the wall, one at a time, but woven together they prepared you for today. You have to take the time to prepare the soil if you want it to embrace the seed."
"The darkness hides the true size of fears and lies and regrets," Jesus explained."The truth is they are more shadow that reality, so they seem bigger in the dark. When the light shines into the places they live inside you, you start to see them for what they are."
"Because you don't believe. You don't know that we love you. The person who lives by their fears will not find freedom in my love. I am not talking about rational fears regarding legitimate dangers, but imagined fears, and especially the projection of those into the future."
"I don't need to punish people for sin. Sin is its own punishment, devouring you from the inside. It's not my purpose to punish it; it's my joy to cure it."
K... so I need help !! I have a little bit of a shopping problem.. which those of you that know me are aware of.. Hey, I am not married and on a diet so I gotta get a fix somehow. Serious issues !! SOOO !! I am trying to just buy one thing a month.. HA !! Yah, like it will happen. Or I could just pay off some bills... nah, why would I do that !!?? So these are some of the things I have been eyeing lately. I am a horrible person.. selfish really :) What do you think I should get? HELP !!?? And dad, you are not allowed to comment on this post.. I already know what you will say... :)
CHOICE #1: Phone bling... every girl needs it !!!
CHOICE #2: Coach Purse... I love COACH... AAAH !!!!!
CHOICE #3: Jewelry..?? Which one??
CHOICE #4: Shoes ???.. Which one...
Do you notice my skull and bones theme going on here ??!! So maybe I should get all three skull and bones items and be cute matchy match !!??
My Angia came down to see me this weekend to go on a planned scuba dive. Last year, she started getting into scuba, now she is almost licensed to be a teacher. She is amazing !! She might be scared to pee in a public restroom, but by golly, she will put on her scuba gear... and go out and brave the wild sea !! I am proud of her, and am grateful to have her in my life !! She really wants me to do it.. I tend to get a little claustriphobic.. so NAH !! :)
I feel like I have come full circle on my Blog here. Last year at this time.. were some of my first posts... and like last year, it is time for "D" Week. I am the Senior Class Advisor at my school. I love it !! I get to be involved with some great kids.. and with some of the greatest traditions at our school. The seniors are gettin' ready for "The Bucket Run". This is by far one of our coolest traditions at my school. The kids start at the school and pass off the bucket... on and on.. until they reach "The Sugar Loaf" (A red mountain with 'DIXIE' written on it). It is about three miles away. Then they construct a pully system to get the bucket to the top of the mountain. We have about 65 seniors participating this year. The goal is to beat the class time that has done it before them. This year... Class of 2009.. will try to beat... Class of 2005, the last class with the fastest time. I think they have a good shot. But, whatever happens I know I will have a blast seeing them try !!
Carter had a birthday a couple of days ago.. He is so big !! It seriously freaks me out. It also freaks me out that girls are coming into the picture. I tend to get a little psychotic about it.... Say things like, I will kill them if they touch you... you are not allowed to talk to them... etc. Andee is more calm about it than me. You see, Carter was really my first baby. He came before my nephews and nieces.. before Willer and Brianne... He truly will always be my little baby.. even when he is a grown man. I can't help that... I love the kid too much. We have been through a lot buddy, thank you for all the memories and happiness you have given me. Happy Birthday my "Little Bubba"... you truly are an amazing young man !! And it is really hard for me to say that.... the man part. :)
Lately, I have been kicking up my reading to a whole new level. My Tivo is hurting... calling my name.. but I seem to just want to read. :) It's a phase, but I am loving it. I started reading a trilogy by Libba Bray. The books are pictured above. I have read the first two.. and I love them. Just got done reading the second.. and have to wait till next paycheck to buy the third. :) Yah, I suck with my money. The end of the second one just left me content and in thought about life. These books are your basic good and evil, love and friendship, mystery and magic... all in one. I have to share the end of the second book though. I love how Gemma, Anne, and Felicity converse about good and evil.. and through the imagery of clouds, leaves, and wind... Bray portrays paths that we all must take at times in our lives, good or evil, to find ourselves. Highly recommend these books... especially if you liked Twilight.
Anne: "In the books, the truth makes everything good and fine. The good prevail. The wicked are punished. There is happiness. But it's not like that really, is it?"
Gemma: "No, I say." "I suppose it only makes everything known."
We lean our heads back against the tree and look up at the puff, white clouds.
Anne: "Why bother with it at all, then?"
A cloud castle floats lazily by, becoming a dog in the process.
Gemma: "Because you can't keep up the illusion forever," I say. "No one has that much magic."
For a long while, we sit, saying nothing. No one attempts to hold hands or tell a merry joke, to talk of what has happened or what is to come. We simply sit, our backs to the tree, our shoulders grazing one another. It is the lightest of touches and yet it is enough to weight me to the earth.
And for a moment, I understand that I have friends on this lonely path, that sometimes your place is not something you find, but something you have when you need it.
The wind picks up. It sends the leaves scurrying for cover until a softer breeze blows through, settling down again as if to say, "Shhh, there, there, it's all right." One leaf still dances in the air. It spins higher and higher, defying gravity and logic, stretching for something just out of reach. It shall have to fall, of course. Eventually. But for now, I hold my breath, willing it to keep going, taking comfort in its struggle.
Another gust blows. The leaf carried toward the horizon on the wind's powerful wings. I watch till it becomes a line and then a speck. I watch until I can't see anything, until the path it has traveled is erased by a sudden flurry of new leaves.
One of my favorite things about "The George" is the red mountains. I am not a big fan of dirt... Who is? But, if is it red dirt, I tend to get nostalgic and think of home. This past Sunday was such a beautiful Easter day we decided to go to Pioneer Park up by the sugar loaf to take pics. Andal wanted some family pics, and I was happy to oblige with my Nikon. :) I am so glad they got to visit. I am lucky to have friends like them in my life. Chan takes good care of me, feeds me well.. and buys me stuff against my will. :) Andal is always there when I need her with sound advice.. and the kids... Well, they light up my life. :)
Easter weekend was very eventful at my house. I loved it !! Chan, Andee, and the kids came and stayed with me. We went to the Art Show, ate, watched movies, did some Easter Traditions, shopped, and hiked. We had some extra visitors as well, Smel and her boys stayed with us one night, and Bob and her girls came for a visit. My place was HOPPING !!! It was great to be with friends and celebrate Easter !!
Smel and her boys stopped by to stay the night. Chef Chan was in business and made us breakfast !! Omelettes !! My favorite..
The girls went shopping with Aunt Kay and Panko (Andee's mom) !! We managed to spend two hours in TJ Maxx... Gotta love that store !!
Bob and her girls came over to chill with us a little bit. Bob is one of my old friends that I lived with for like five years !! Wub her !!
Will came to school with my on Friday... He loved it !! He was cracking my kids up !!
Here we are preparing for Easter morning... the kids are filling our eggs up so that they can hide them for me, Andal, and Chan to find. Chan is cheating.. and Brianne gets just a little excited !! :)