On life's journey, whether traveling around the world or walking around your block, there's lots to learn about life, love, and the pursuit of happiness, so lets dive into a new ocean together!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Lady Traveler and New Year's Eve 2011

The most important trip you may take in life is meeting people halfway.

Where has the year gone? Aren't you asking yourself the same question? Today I am enjoying the stillness of my sea, hoping it is a sign of what lies beyond the blue horizon.

Here are a few random thoughts to end my year.

January: I started out with a bang--I became senior citizen.! I wear this honor proudly, thankful to be alive. My friends gave me a surprise dinner party--I love my friends, both near and far.

June: Our daughter Jacquie, Tom, & Destinee pulled up their California stakes and moved to Lexington (on Lake Murray), South Carolina--now only a road-trip away from us.

October: My debut novel, Lady and the Sea, was released--and sailing full-speed ahead.

November: Our daughter Carrie married, bringing our son Jason and other family members from near and far to be together for five fun-filled days. Our son, Shawn, and Frances made their California exit to Washington after she accepted a position as news reporter for CBS TV (she is a natural in front of the camera!).

And the year was sprinkled with out-of-state friends stopping over to bring sunshine to my life (Joni, Susan, Regina, Lora, Teri, to name a few--I miss you!)

I'm taking time to ponder over 2011 -- a year full of love, laughter, and blessings. But at the same time I cannot spend too much time looking back when 2012 is beckoning me to sail away. I have no idea what God has in store for the coming year, but Rob and I are ready to leave our safe shore--again--and dive into a new ocean! Look out, 2012, here we come!

I wish you oceans of blessings and smooth sailing for the coming year!

Be joyful. Grow to maturity. Encourage each other. Live in harmony & peace. Then the God of love and peace will be with you.
2 Corinthians 13:11 NLT


Friday, December 23, 2011

The Eve of Christmas Eve

Photo: My Swedish Christmas Korner 2010 ~ God Jul!

Is it possible that in the midst of my last-minute Christmas 'to-do' listings that I'm finding time to write a blog? Well, I chose to take a few minutes in my office to write a few last-minute random Christmas thoughts to those dear to me.

Daily we hear the famous quote, Christmas is for family. True, but that is only part of the reason for the season. This note is a reminder to all of us who have reasons to get a bit stressed with family during this holiday season. It happens to all of us, so don't feel like you're being punished for being a bad little girl ... or boy, as the case may be. Lets face it, some situations never change. For example, the relative who says to us, "We're going to do our own thing this Christmas." And off they go ... again ... year after year after year. Oh well. Their loss.

Then there's the other relative who mentions on the phone two days before Christmas, "Oh, by the way, we're not giving Christmas presents this year." Huh? Oh well. It's better to give than receive anyway, right?

These are only two examples of some of my friend's Christmas family challenges. The important thing I've learned through the years: don't take it too personal. Look at the source, take a deep breath, say a prayer and bless them, then have yourself a very Merry Christmas! Spend time with those who look forward to sharing a few hours out of their busy-ness to be with you. Embrace them. Love them. And who knows, perhaps the relative who seem the most distant will some day return to the fold.

Let us remember the real Reason for the Season ... the Baby who was born to take away the sins of the world. Jesus never seems to get enough of me. *Smile*

Here's wishing you oceans of blessings this Christmas season!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Lady Leaf's Loft at Christmastime

Christmas is here at last ... my favorite time of year. .. there is magic in the air ... I'm sure it has something to do with the 'reason for the season' ... a special Baby's birth.

As you know, I had my own baby birthed a few weeks ago ... no comparison, of course! So far, Lady and the Sea has been a delight for me and for Rob. A few random thoughts:

After several book signings and my East Coast Book Launch Open House, I have been blessed to meet many wonderful people. Several ladies who work with Rob bought Lady then asked me to sign their books. What an opportunity to get to talk personally with these great gals. When I'm asked, "Are you stressed with the success of your book?" my answer is, no, I refuse to stress; I'm embracing the wonder of this journey. My hope is to get Lady and the Sea into the hands of those who need to hear a true story of faith, hope, and restoration. No matter what rough waters we have been through, or what riptide we may be going through, there will be smooth sailing ahead for those who trust God. I'll talk more about the message of Lady and the Sea next year ... only two weeks away! But for now, I want to focus on the true meaning of Christmas.

Something has changed in the atmosphere this Christmas season. Can you feel it? Everywhere I go, when I chime "Merry Christmas" I always get a friendly reply, "Merry Christmas to you." CHRISTmas + a smile = JOY! No apologies. One Target cashier told me, "No one can stop me from saying Merry Christmas." And why should they? 'Tis the season! I think people with any common sense knows by now that no one is trying to offend anyone with a Christmas salutation. I love when my Jewish friends say to me, "Happy Hanukkah!" I feel like I'm part of their celebration ... with no offense taken. We must stop carrying our feelings on our shoulders. If I'm talkin' to you, shake them off! There's only room for love this Christmas season. And that is what I wish for all of you ... Oceans of love and a very Merry Christmas!