Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Day 210, July 31

Today is my birthday.  Finding joy in turning another year older is not always easy. The older I grow, the more I realize that I don't adapt well to change.  The last decade has seen changes in my energy and health.  (Not good.)  It has also witnessed changes in my ability to meet challenges.  In some ways, I feel that I have grown stronger.  In others, I know I have fallen behind.

In a writer's magazine, I found an article on coping with change.  The author listed some key points in dealing with change in the publishing world.  I think they have universal application.

Denying change won't stop it from happening and only adds stress to your life. 

Continue learning.  Where would we be without learning?  In many ways, I feel as untutored and unschooled as a two-year-old child, just now grasping a few elemental concepts.

Have faith in the Lord.  This, of course, is the most crucial in helping me--or anyone--to weather changes.  God is there.  For me, for you, for everyone, giving guidance and strength.

This I know for sure:  change is inevitable.  Adapting to it need not be frightening as long as the Lord is on my side.

Monday, July 30, 2012

Day 209, July 30

Do you ever think that your learning curve in picking up a new skill or talent is sharper than it is for others?  I do.  I was convinced that I couldn't learn to use a computer.  Later, I was convinced that I wouldn't be able to do more than simply type on a word-processor.  And so on.

In starting this blog, I had to face another learning curve.  What did I, a stay-at-home mother of five, know about computers or blogging?  What did I know about anything?

But I persisted.  With my husband's and children's (and sometimes even my grandchildren's) help, I got my blog up and running.  When blogger changed its format, I turned to a son to help me figure it out.  Again.

Though I struggled (and continue to struggle) with all things computer-related, that is not the biggest learning curve I face.  Confronting my own inadequacies, my weaknesses, my fears, my sins is the steepest mountain I must climb.   Fortunately, the Savior has provided a way.  His way.  For there is no other.

This I know for sure:  we all must climb our own mountains.  The good news is that we need not do it alone.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Day 208, July 29

A great book should leave you with many experiences, and slightly exhausted at the end. You live several lives while reading.
William Styron (author of Sophie's Choice)

For those of you who are tired of my postings about books, I apologize.  For those who love books, as I do, then I'll just say "Here I am again with yet another blog about them."

I have shelves (and boxes and drawers) of books.  I try to weed them out, to pass them along, to find new homes for them.  But some I cannot bear to part with.  Books are not only tangible thoughts put on paper but expressions of who we are.  Whether we write books or simply read them, we are better because of them.  We learn about ourselves when we come upon a phrase or a sentence that resounds within us.  And some of us long to be able to write in such a beautiful way.

My reading tastes are varied:  romance, suspense, history, inspirational, and children's books have all found their way onto my shelves.  Who can forget the first time she read Nancy Drew or Little Women?  Who can forget whiling away a summer afternoon with his head in a book and a glass of lemonade at his side? 

This I know for sure:  a world without books would be unspeakably barren.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Day 207, July 28

"A single act of kindness throws out roots in all directions, and the roots spring up and make new trees."  -- Amelia Earhart

Ms. Earhart's words remain as true today as they did nearly a hundred years ago when she penned them.  Kindness begets kindness.  And, unfortunately, the reverse is true.  Unkindness begets unkindness.

We have all heard the phrase "random acts of kindness."  Though I like that phrase, I prefer "intentional acts of kindness."  Perhaps it is because it takes some effort on my part to be kind--kindness does not come naturally to me.   I have to think about and then act on any impulses to extend kindness to another. 

That doesn't say much about me, does it?  Or it says too much.

This I know for sure:  every act of kindness sprouts seeds.  Those seeds can bloom in to beautiful flowers.

Friday, July 27, 2012

Day 206, July 27

Lookiing for the good in people is not something I do naturally.  I want to have that quality for I admire it when I see it in others.  I admire the faith and optimism of looking for and then see the good in those around me.  Unfortunately, that trait continues to elude me. The fact is, a number of people have let me down over the years.  That has (unfairly) colored my expectations of others.

I wonder if my less than charitable view of others becomes a self-fulfilling prophecy.  Is my failure contributing to their failure?  If they sense my lack of faith in them, could it cause them to stop trying?  I excuse myself by saying, "Well, my opinion is not important."  And that's true.  My opinion is not important.  But maybe on a particular day when someone needs to be believed in, my faith--or lack of faith--in him could make a difference.

I wasn't always this way.  I used to look for and see the good.  In everyone.  Age, experience, disappointment, and my own all-too-human nature erased that childlike belief that everyone is (usually) doing their best.

This I know for sure:  looking for and finding the good in others is a Christ-like quality that I would do well to emulate.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Day 205, July 26

You never know what worse luck your bad luck has saved you from.   Cormac McCarthy

Do you ever feel that you have the absolutely worst luck of anyone you know?  I've felt this upon occasion.  Something happens and I think, "Why me?  Why again?"

When I've had a few hours (or days or months or years) to calm down, I realize that the thing that I so bemoaned was actually the best thing that could have happened.  Rarely do I have the insight, the wisdom, or the spiritual maturity to realize it at that moment, though.

Many years ago, I sent a book to a publisher who had purchased a book from me in the past.  To my dismay, the editor rejected the book.  I pouted, whined, and moaned.  Two years later, I heard of another publisher (a bigger one) looking for manuscripts that this rejected book just might work for.  I revised, then revised again, and submitted it.  To my delight, the second publisher bought the book.  It turned out to be one of the best sales I had made thus far.  It wouldn't have happened if the first publisher had purchased the book.

I think back on that and realize that what seemed a tragedy was actually a blessing.  Many other such things have happened.  What matters is how I look at it.

This I know for sure:  the Lord knows our needs.  What's more, He knows what we don't need.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Day 204, July 25

A man who procrastinates in his choosing will inevitably have his choice made for him by circumstance.  Hunter S. Thompson

Procrastination is one of my bug-a-boos.  By that, I mean I procrastinate the hard things in life.  I procrastinate exercising.  I procrastinate writing.  Even knowing that these things are good for me and that I want to do them, I procrastinate.

As I've written in earlier posts, I procrastinated having my hip replacement surgery.  Finally, circumstances (pain and not being able to walk) forced me in to it.

I also procrastinate making things right between me and others when niggling things rise up to cause a rift.  It is easier to let things slide, easier to accept the status quo, rather than trying to make things right.  Because of this, I lose the pleasure and joy of those associations.  My heart hardens, and my self-justification digs deeper.  And that brings me to repentance, for I procrastinate that as well.  Thankfully, for me, the Lord is patient.

This I know for sure:  procrastination only makes things harder, not easier.

Day 175, July 29

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Day 203, July 24

July 24 is Pioneer Day in our church.  On this day, the Mormon pioneers, led by Prophet and President Brigham Young arrived in the Salt Lake Valley of Utah. 

The hardships they faced, from hunger to cold to blizzards and a myriad of others, would defeat many of us, me most especially.  For I like my comforts and have been known to complain as we make the drive from our home in Loveland, Colorado to Utah in an air-conditioned car.

My own ancestors were among those who crossed the plains.  They walked along side covered wagons.  They pulled handcarts.  They buried their old ... and their young.  They left behind comfortable homes and family because of the Lord's direction.  What faith they had.  What strength and courage.  I read of them, in journals and history books.  And I weep with what they endured.  Could I have buried a baby in a shallow grave and then continued on my way?  

This I know for sure:  the pioneers left a legacy of sacrifice and obedience

Monday, July 23, 2012

Day 202 July 23

I make mistakes; I'll be the second to admit it.   Jean Kerr

Jean Kerr, who was known for her comedies such as PLEASE DON'T EAT THE DAISIES, probably meant this as a tongue-in-cheek observation.  I appreciate her humor and her insights in to family life.

Whe I read this, however, I thought of the Father's all-knowing power.  He knows when I've made a mistake.  Whether or not I admit it, He knows.  He also knows if I try to rectify that mistake or if I let it slide.

He knows.

He has given me--given all of us--the gift of repentance, to wipe clean our slates if we but accept this most precious of gifts.

This I know for sure:  I make mistakes.  Power comes in repentance.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Day 201, July 22

"To live with gratitude ever in our hearts is to touch Heaven."

I found this quote on a bookmark.  It's not easy to live with gratitude "ever in our hearts."  I make a resolution to be more grateful, to be more cognizant, more aware of the Father's blessings, then, the moment something goes wrong, my resolution withers and dies.

During this past week, I have grieved over the loss of a dear friend.  His passing has left a hole in the life of his family, his friends, indeed, all who knew him.  I wanted to rail at God (and I did) for taking this fine man.  What was there to be grateful for in this?

Then I remembered the last 18 months when he fought the devastating battle with leukemia.  Miracles occurred, as his life was spared again and again.  And I was grateful.  Miracles continued to occur.  And I was grateful.  And now ... I am (trying to be) grateful that his suffering is over.

As I said, living with gratitude in my heart isn't easy.  Too frequently I am short-sighted, failing to see the Father's plan, failing to look beyond the here and now.

This I know for sure:  if I am to grow and mature in my love for the Savior and the Father, I must find gratitude.  For everything.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Day 200, July 21

There are no faster or firmer friendships than those formed between people who love the same books.   Irving Stone

Well, here I am again, with yet another quote, and, what's more, another quote about books.  Do you see a recurrent theme here? 

Author Irving Stone was more than perceptive when he penned the above words.  The books we love tell much about us.  The people we love tell the same.  Is it no wonder that the two should interconnect intimately?

In books, we seek for shared experiences, shared feelings, shared thoughts.  The realliy good writers may set their story in 16th century Zanzibar, a time and land far away from our own, but, because they are talented, they rouse in us such a resonance that we immediately connect with their characters.

In friends, we also seek for shared experiences, shared feelings, shared thoughts.  The really good friends reflect ourselves back to us, and, if they're extra special friends, they give us a reason to try to be better, to be more than we were originally.

This I know for sure:  books and friends are as necessary for my well-being as are water and air.  Without them, I would surely waste away.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Day 199, July 20

Today, the 20th of July, is my sister Carla's birthday.

I celebrate it, just as I celebrate her.  To know Carla is to love her.  And to love her is to be  better because of it.  In the past years, Carla has endured much.  Health problems.  The loss of her beloved husband.  More health problems.  But she keeps going.  Faith in the Lord and a loving family have made her strong, as have the inner resources she calls upon again and again.

Carla and I have always been closer than sisters, more intimate than friends.  We share our triumphs and our defeats, our joys and our pains, out srengths and our weaknesses.  In fact, there is little we don't share.  In many ways, we are different.  She is patient and long-suffering.  I am not.   She shops at Nordstroms.  I shop at garage sales.  But, in spite of these differences, or, perhaps, because of them, we are there for each other.  In the parlance of the world, we have each other's backs. 

This I know for sure:  I am  a better person because of my sister.

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Day 198, July 19

A person often meets his destiny on the road he took to avoid it. --Jean de La Fontaine

By now, you know I love inspiring and thought-provoking quotes. As I pondered this one, I wondered how it applied to me. It occurred to me that my not-so-distant hip replacement surgery could be viewed as something I tried to avoid. I rejected the idea, rejected the need for surgery, rejected that I couldn't fix myself.

Of course, I was wrong. I desperately needed the surgery and, when it was over, wondered why I had taken such lengths to avoid it. Fear, obviously. Pride, most assuredly.

As I was recovering, I learned some things about myself. Perhaps that was the real destiny I was trying to avoid: that of self-awareness. I learned that I was prideful, not wanting to ask for help, not wanting to admit that I couldn't take care of myself and my home. Circumstances humbled me to need and to ask for my husband's assistance in putting on the compression stockings, even to getting in and out of the shower. They also forced me to ask friends for rides to physical therapy and to hire someone to help with the housework.

Surgery was my first destiny; rehabilitation was the second. But neither was as eye-opening or painful as my acceptance of my own limitations.

This I know for sure: the destiny we try to avoid is often the one that is most needed.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Day 197, July 18

Good humor may be said to be one of the very best articles of dress one can wear in society.   William Makepeace Thackeray

It is no secret that I love to laugh.  I love old comedies--nothing will ever top I LOVE LUCY.  I also love to laugh at myself.  (Usually.)

But I wonder if laughter is what Thackeray was talking about.  Perhaps by "good humor" he referred to the refusal to allow one's self to become angry or resentful at another.  In donning good humor, one puts on the garb of kindness, patience, and forgiveness.  I am, too frequently, short in all three of these qualities.

Am I showing good humor if a driver cuts me off in traffic and I mutter under mybreath at him?  Probably not.  Am I showing good humor when I allow my feelings to be hurt by a slight or an unkind remark?  Again, probably not.

This I know for sure:  good humor should be an essential part of the outfit in any "best dressed" list.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Day 195, July 17

I arise in the morning torn between a desire to improve (or save) the world and a desire to enjoy (or savor) the world. This makes it hard to plan the day.   E.B. White

I love this quote.  It reminds me that we must do both--save and savor the world.  Too frequently, I am content to let the world pass by.  I allow complacency and, I'm ashamed to admit, laziness to cause me to drift.  If I want to make the world a better place (save), I must do my part.  And if I want to enjoy that same world (savor), I must find the beauty and joy in the Father's creations.

Neither of these can or will be done if I neglect my role.  Heavenly Father did not send us to this earth to be passive onlookers.  He sent us here to be active participants.  I do not believe it is a coincidence that both these words--save and savor--sound so much like Savior, the ultimate example

This I know for sure:  we must both save and savor if we are to be like our Savior.

Monday, July 16, 2012

Day 194, July 16

Every great dream begins with a dreamer. Always remember, you have within you the strength, the patience, and the passion to reach for the stars to change the world.  --  Harriet Tubman

I have always been a dreamer.  Too much so, at times.  Unfortunately, many of my dreams have lacked the strength, the patience, and the passion to make them come true.

Harriet Tubman's words remind me that dreams are not enough.  They must be backed up with work, more work, and still more work.  They must be bolstered by conviction and sacrifice.  If all of my dreams haven't come true, it is because I haven't done my part.

This I know for sure:  dreams are great; the work to make them happen is even more so.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Day 193, July 15

I have a sign in my home that says, "Simplify."

It serves as a reminder for me to try to keep my home uncluttered.  I don't always achieve this, as papers and magazines and books pile up.  (I struggle to get rid of books!)  This sign also serves as a reminder to simplify my life. 

In activities, less is frequently more.  When my children were young, we were busy with book club and music lessons, Little League practice and church service projects, and a dozen other things.  One night as my husband chauffeured a daughter to one activity and I drove a son to another activity, I realized that we were less a family than a central meeting place.  We evaluated the different activities, to determine what was valuable and what wasn't. The difficult choices are not between good and bad but between good and good.

We didn't always succeed in our efforts to simplify our lives, but we kept trying.  Just as in my attempts to declutter our home, decluttering our lives took thought and consideration.

Now, with my children grown, I am not torn in different directions.  However, I face a different kind of clutter, that of unwelcome and unwholesome thoughts:  grudges that I nurse, hurt feelings that won't go away, and painful memories.  All of of these take energy and time that could be better spent elsewhere.

This I know for sure:  clutter, whether in things, time, or thoughts, serves no purpose.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Day 192, July 14

I was going to write something different today.  But circumstances changed.  My heart is heavy and tears roll unheeded down my face as I write this:  Two nights ago, a dear friend died.  Dave Lancaster was one of earth's (and now heaven's) noble and great ones.  His example of love and compassion, service and sacrafice, will never be forogtten by those who knew him.

My words are feeble to describe this man, who loved the Lord, his family, and his friends so well.  Dave gave his all to whatever he did.  There were no halfway measures for him.  Not in serving his family.  Not in serving his friends.  And not in serving the Lord.

How many of us can say that about ourselves?  I certainly can't.  My efforts are puny when compared to Dave's, as is my heart.  He leaves a legacy that will stand tall and straight, in every way.  His sweet wife and children are part of that legacy. 

This I know for sure:  earth lost one of her star's with Dave's passing.  And heaven has gained one.

Friday, July 13, 2012

Day 191, July 13

I have little patience for the pretenders in life.

They fill our schools, our workplaces,  and, at times, even our churches.  Who are the pretenders?  They are the people who pretend they will do a job, only to slough it off on to someone else out of selfishness, laziness, or lack of care. 

Because I am a writer, I am an observer, a people-watcher.   (I also make up stories about the people I watch, so beware:  you might find yourself in a story someday.)  At church, I watch as leaders of organizations scurry around to find a substitute when someone doesn't show up to fullfill his calling.

Those in the workplace have the same experience when an employee promises to complete a job, only to abandon it when it turns cumbersome or difficult.  Even families are not free of pretenders, those mothers and fathers who cast aside their responsibilities and obligations to their most precious stewardship:  their children.

This I know for sure:  pretenders are only pretending at life. 

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Day 190, July 12

I admit it:  I'm a purse snob.  I love designer purses and shop garage sales, looking for Louis Vuitons or Pradas or Guccis.  I eschew fakes and maintain that "Life is too short to carry a fake."

A few Sundays ago, our Bishop spoke in church about the dangers of being misled by counterfeits of the Lord's plan.  Another kind of fake.   Satan would have us substitute his plan for the Lord's, mixing in enough truth to tempt us into believing him.  And sometimes I have succumbed to his lies, telling myself that, after all, there is some truth there, why not accept them and make life easier on myself.

My inner soul knows better, and, eventually, I reject the lies.  But not before they have tainted my being, if only for a few minutes.  Why did I waste even a moment giving credence to Lucifer's lies?  I suppose it's because I am weak and easily manipulated.

This I know for sure:  Satan's lies are waiting to entrap us.  Following the Lord's plan is our only hope for safety and happiness.

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Day 189, July 11

A couple of weeks ago, I wrote about shoes, how one could tell a lot about an individual by his/her shoes.  I believe the same goes for homes.  I have visited some houses that were decorated with meticulous attention to detail, lavish in their use of design and materials.  I have visited other houses that were modest in the extreme, but clean and uncluttered.

Neither extreme is good or bad.  What matters is whether or not a house is a home. 

Home has different definitions for different people.  For me, home equals love and family, safety and refuge.  It is a place to put my feet up and my head down.  Our home is modest; however, I believe it reflects our values.  Pictures of family are intersprinkled with pictures of the Savior, for I cannot think of one without the other. 

The new room we added on is comfortably decorated, with room for grandchildren to play, a table that can be extended for big gatherings, and filled with books. Lots and lots of books.  For me, a house is not a home without books.

This I know for sure:  whatever its size or decor, a house is only a home when filled with love.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Day 188, July 10

"To be without some of the things you want is an indispensable part of happiness."--Bertrand Ruissell

How many times I have longed for something, a trinket,, a talent, a character trait, and bemoaned my fate that it was not mine?  Would I be happier if I possessed this thing?  Maybe.  Maybe not.  A new purse will give momentary pleasure; a talent will bring satisfaction; a worthy character trait will doubtless enrich my life.

If I had that thing I longed for, perhaps I would not strive as much as I do, perhaps I would hurt myself with its possession.  Or, worse, perhaps I would hurt another.

This I know for sure:  being without everything I want strengthens me in indefinable ways.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Day 187, July 9

"Something special happens when people laugh together over something genuinely funny, and not hurtful to anyone.  It's like a magic rain that showers down feelings of comfort, safety, and belonging to a group."--Mary Jane Belfie

It is no secret that I love to laugh.  At life's abusrdities, at myself.   Laughter, shared with friends and family, is healing.  Laughter used as a weapon is not.  It shames me to admit that I have laughed at another's misfortune, at another's embarrassment.  Why I did that, I'm not sure.  Perhaps it was in relief that the cause of the laughter did not happen to me.  Perhaps it was because I have a nasty streak that too often rears its ugly head.

I am working on curbing this pernicious habit, working on developing a softer heart, a more compassionate soul.  In this, as in so many other things, I remain a work in progress.

This I know for sure:  laughter can heal; it can also hurt.  How we use it is, in large part, a measure of the people we are.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Day 186, July 8

"I would rather have a big burden  and a strong back, than a weak back and a caddy to carry life's luggage."--Elbert Hubbard

Sometimes my burdens seem too heavy to carry.  I realize that, when compared to those of others, they are light, but I am a selfish being and ftend to ocus on my own problems.

When those burdens seem too heavy, I complain.  I whine.  And sometimes I even whine to the Lord.  He chastizes me, reminding me that He has blessed me with a strong back.  I have but to use it, to lift myself, to lift another.

This I know for sure:  no burden is too heavy when shared with the Lord.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Day 185, July 7

"I think women need kindness more than love.  When one human being is kind to another, it's a very deep matter."  -- Alice Childress

I have many regrets in my life.  For things I've done.  For things I haven't done.  But never have I regretted a kindness extended.  I have never considered extendinng kindnesses a waste, either of time or effort or funds. 

What I do regret, however, are those times when I witihheld a kindness, when I was too busy, too lazy, too selfish to lift another.  And do we all not need a lift occasionally?  I know I do.  An unexpected phone call, a card in the mail, a kind word, all of these brighten my day and my spirit.  And when my spirit is brightened, I am more able to give to others.  We might call it serial kindness.

This I know for sure:  kindness is contagioius.  And, unfortunately, so is unkindness.

Friday, July 6, 2012

Day 184, July 6

One is happy once one knows the necessary ingredients of happiness: simple tastes, a certain degree of courage, self denial to a point, love of work, and above all, a clear conscience.   George Sand

When I read this, my stomach took a nosedive, as did my spirits.  Why?  Because I don't measure up in these areas.  My tastes can be crazy, I possess no courage, my self-denial quotient is at an all time low, I'm lazy, and my conscience pricks me for my lack of compassion and my judgmental attitude.

Not a particuarly good score.

So, what can I do to improve?  I should probably pick one thing and work on it.  I've noticed that if I make one small change, it frequently leads to another small change and then another.  The hard part is getting started.

This I know for sure:  if I don't start, I'll never get to where I want to be.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Day 183, July 5

The most exhausting thing in life, I have discovered, is being insincere.   Anne Morrow Lindbergh
I have always loved Anne Morrow's Lindbergh's writing.  (Check out her book GIFT FROM THE SEA for a really good read.)

As she states, being insincere takes effort.  It's hard remembering what lie you told whom.  Lies come in all forms and we don't always recognize them.

Being sincere also takes effort.  It requires thought to find the right words said in the right tone and at the right time.  But the results are worth it.

This I know for sure:  insincerity is an insult to both the one who delivers it and the recipient.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Day 182, July 4

"Men sleep peacefully in their beds at night because rough men stand ready to do violence on their behalf." -- George Orwell.

I have always loved this quote and have, in fact, used it before in this blog.  On this July 4th, my thoughts turn to our Founding Fathers and others who gave their all, including their lives, to the building of America.  My thoughts also are with the men and women who serve in our armed forces today.  Once again, they give their all. 

I came of age during the Vietnam War era.  It was common then to disparge those who served our country, to denigrate their sacrifice.  It hurt my heart then, as it does now. 

This I know for sure:  those who serve our country serve us in ways we cannot imagine.

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Day 181, July 3

Today is my Aunt Mae's 88th birthday.  Please forgive me for writing about her once more.  I can't seem to help myself.  She continues to inspire me, to movtivate me to do better, to be better.

At a time of life when many people are content to "rest upon their laurels," Aunt Mae keeps serving.  Anyone.  And everyone.  Not just her family, but those in her church, her community, her town.   What an example for me, for all who know her.

Sometimes, I want to say "I'm too old" to serve, to create, to do anything worthwhile.  And then I think of Aunt Mae and others.  President of The Church of Jesus Christ of Lattery-day Saints Gordon B. Hinckler was sustained as Prophet and President when he was well into his 80s and served in that position until his death at 97, nearly 98.  That leaves me with little excuse.

This I know for sure: those who ignore their age in favor of service are among the noble and great ones.

Monday, July 2, 2012

Day 180, July 2

"Happiness is an attitude.  We either make  ourselves miserable or happy and strong.  The amount of work is the same."--Francesca Reigher

Never have these words had more meaning to me than during the past week.  I was in a funk, a mood, or, as as my daughter would say, a crappy place.  Nothing was right.  Nothing was good.  Nothing was worthwhile.  Especially me.

And so I hid from the world.  I actually hid, taking the phone off the hook, and hunkering down in my room.  It was a miserable week. What's more, I was miserable.  My outlook had taken a nosedive and refused to come up for air.

Friday morning, I went out with friends.  I really didn't want to go but was persuaded to pick myself up and start living again.  Gradually, almost imperceptibly, I felt my mood lift. 

This I know for sure:  we control our world with our attitude; we color our world with that  same attitude.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

Day 179, July 1

I've always thought you could tell a lot about a person by their shoes.  If someone who didn't know me looked at my shoes, they could probably guess my age.  My shoes scream "comfort" and "support" for old feet.  They might also discern that I do a lot of walking by the wear patterns on the soles.

My husband's shoes, frequently covered with grass, proclaim that we don't have a gardener and that he does the yard work in our family.  My grandson's shoes shout of active, busy, and messy lives.

Shoes have a way of giving away other hints.  Does a woman feel the need to wear stilettos to be fashionable?  Does a man keep his shoes buffed and shined because he is in the public eye?  And, even, do one's feet pronate? 

With the availability of plastic surgery and other procedures to enhance our features, faces are not always an accurate reflection of an individual's age or life style.  But you can't hide secrets in  the choice of shoes.  Just as we can't hide secrets from our Father in Heaven.

This I know for sure:  soles and souls both tell the truth.