Saturday, October 2, 2010

My Time . . .

     Those of you who read my former blog at Typepad might remember the post I wrote on Itzhak Perlman, world famous violinist.

  • By way of reminder...Did you see Schindler’s List? John Williams wrote the score and Itzhak Perlman, an Israeli-American violin virtuoso, was the violin soloist for that 1993 film. Perlman’s performance won an Academy Award for Mr. Williams for best score.

  • It is reported that Mr. Perlman said something like, "Sometimes it is the artist's task to find out how much music the artist can still make with what he/she has left."
     Mr. Perlman, of course, was addressing musicians and encouraging them to keep on keeping on. He won the Academy Award when he was nearing fifty years old. After studying Itzhak Perlman's life, I made a card  for my desk with his words printed in vibrant colors. Of course, I took his message to heart and applied them to my writing... to discover, when I was seventy, how many words I could still write with the time I had left.
     So, I wrote a lot of words. MANY, MANY words. Some of those words were published, some words were reported to have blessed a lot of people, and some words were just for my family or myown secret journal.
     Then life took some difficult adjustments and things other than my own words required more of my attention so I poured my heart and soul into lives of those who needed me.

And I grew older.

  • Read that carefully: I did NOT say wiser.
But, in quiet way, life settled down and became easier.

  • Enter Ava.
     Now remember THERE WAS A SERIOUS REASON to bring this beautiful black Lab, Ava, into our home at this silver time of our lives. Those reasons are still relavant.
    Yes, I KNEW it would be hard, physical work (but I've been working out in the pool at the local Wellness Center for a year . . .
Give me some CREDIT here PLEASE !!!!

     And yes, I understood that a new pet would not be perfect and that it would take time and etcetera, etcetera, and ETCETERA !!! (remember the white hair on my head... NOT born yesterday.)
Progress is happening. Really!!
     Today, five days into this new act of love for my daughter, I know how may days it has been since I was born!!!!! And I feel every one of them.
     I wonder.... maybe my task is simply to find out what my limits are and what I CAN STILL do with the time I have left.

     For now, I'll go to my recliner and knit on the red and white scarf-with Ava-at my feet while Dear Heart gets through the Texas OU game. I notice that Mac Brown's hair is rather white, too, so perhaps there are harder things than training a dog to simply walk through the door.

Confused and diligently praying I can trust God to give me wisdom,

Hook 'em Horns & Way to Go, Ava !!

Thursday, September 30, 2010


I went to to search for scriptures on weariness.
     The page opened to the "special of the day."
 ... If I must boast, I will boast of the things that show my weakness. ...
2 Corinthians 11:30
     You see, I wanted to whine and complain about how hard EVERYTHING is and how TIRED I am and how.............  well, you get the boring picture that any one of you could draw. Actually, I am tired but more that I've felt a total failure all day.
      As I typed the address of the above Scripture, Dear Heart came in and said, "Ava is at the door; I think she wants to go out."
     No fuss about the leash, a fun waltz around the back yard and a successful mission!
     Yes, I've tried to do some simple dog training, but I suddenly understand that there is a bigger picture about why we even have a dog -- at this very late time in our lives. And it will be okay. Because I can NOT do it or anything else in or of myself. My Father is strong. My Father is wise. And when I listen to the Holy Spirit, I can do whatever is mine to do. One little chore--- or gift at a time.
    The red and white scarf measures 38 1/2 inches. 

    A few of us in our congregation celebrated the Feast at our Lord's Table today served by our new, young associate pastor and her husband. And I remembered to look to the Bless-er.
Because He first loved me,

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

From Expections to Hope

I completely understood that this happy relationship Melinda has with our Grand-dog, Cocoa is beautiful and unique:

Melinda & Cocoa playing Fetch

     Cocoa comes to see us often and has been visiting for five days while her family is away. She and my daughter are bonded tightly. They play games and Cocoa obeysperfectly. Life has been sweet.
     Today, the three of us drove an hour and a half to Elmendorf--way around 1604 traffic, to meet Ava.

     Ava is about two years old and beautiful. She was rescued from a bad situation and for about four months has been with her foster family 

     After about an hour and a half visiting, petting, talking, and feeding snacks we made the hard decision: Ava needs our love and care and we need her. We signed the papers and she got into the back seat, on her own, with Melinda.
     We drove another hour and a half to get home to our quiet, peaceful house on the hill but Ava didn't want to get out of the car. *sigh* Flash-backs to old foster parenting days hit fast and real. I had to almost lift our ??-not-weighed-yet very heavy new child to get her out of the car. Then she followed us inside and walked around the house. Ava's foster mommy called us to check on us and said, "Just leave her be and let HER come to YOU."
    Well, I knew that. But it is hard. And we are doing that. We are being good adoptive family. And we are all exhausted.
     Cocoa's mama and papa returned home while we were on our rescue mission and they have grilling hambergers at their home-in-progress for us. Sort of a 8th Wedding Anniversary Celebration for Dear Heart and me.
      Adult, two-leg, healthy children are sweet. Adult, four-leg, formerly abused children take time, love, patience, and a lot of hope.
Been there and done it before.
This is a GOOD match.
We CAN do it again.

Tonight, after a relaxing supper, I'll get into one of my praying chairs. I remember that Jesus promised that our Father loves me and the petunias growing in my garden and the birds of the air. I'll ask Him to give us wisdom to let Him love Ava and to show us how to love her in the best way!
Looking to the Bless-er,

Monday, September 27, 2010

Foster Mom Role Reversal

     When human foster children lived at my house 30-plus years ago, things happened in the blink of an eye. Just at supper time, you shoved one bed against the wall and added another from a friend's spare room, set another place at the table, and during the silence of little strangers figuring out whether to be friends and new siblings for awhile, you wondered how to stretch the budget for new clothes. Almost always, the most foster children came with were the clothes they wore and maybe a bedraggled blanket.
     Just as suddenly a case worker would call and say, "Pack Mary's bags; the court is sending her home." No time for goodbyes, explanations, or to compose yourself to hide the tears.
     It sees that some things don't change much, even when the comparasion is like apples and leashes. Sweetness (my grown daughter) is a pet lover from way back but we've only been able to have cats for many, many years. You know... cats are easier; aloof; independent. When her Sassy died last spring, I promised we would get a new pet as soon as we finished with the three major parties happening on our hill and we got settled from taking several major family trips.
     That lull has now come about and after a few deep breaths, we began looking. She and Dear Heart decided a dog would be the right thing for her this time. Odds stacked against me. It's kind of a funny thing, too, because over the last two years, two black labs mysteriously showed up on our front porch. One was only months old and adorable. The other was many years old and had seen better times but stole our hearts. In both cases we searched long and hard and did find their owners which left us with little holes in our hearts. Like when our foster children left us.
     This week, while idly searching through low and behold there was Ava.
     Ava has been at a foster home for quite a while. Her Foster Mother thinks Ava and my Sweetness will make perfect companions. It all happened TODAY. We ran to Walmart and grabbed a pink collar (large) and a pink leash, filled a clean gallon jug with water, threw in lots of plastic bags for 'pooper-scoopers,' found the directions for the 1 1/2 hr trip on mapquest, and tried to explain to Cocoa (our son's 8 year old Chocolate Lab who is visiting) that her mama and daddy will be home tomorrow, and promised each other that all SHALL be well.
     A friend who exercises in the pool at the same time Sweetness and I do-- and who has white hair like mine-- commented today, "Remember: dinosaurs are extinct because they would not adapt."
    She didn't know about the huge change in our life-style [nor did we at the time :-) ] so I'm not sure why she said that. In fact, she repeated it TWICE.
    Well, we are ready to take off in the morning and I can assure and promise you this much: MOTHERS will never outgrow their ability to adapt!!!!!!!!!!! Instantly. Turning on a dime.
Check back for pictures.
     Oh - and please add to your prayer lists my friend fighting cancer, and for two mothers whose DAUGHTERS have deployed to war zones, and for a young friend whose husband has deployed.

Now I'm off to see what God is up to! I hope you will do the same!
~~Liz ~~

Sunday, September 26, 2010

My Front Porch

I gently rocked back and forth on the front porch this afternoon and pondered.

I smiled as I watched my grown daughter run and play with Cocoa. She is "sitting" this beautiful chocolate Lab for our son/daughter-in-law while they are on a rush trip gathering materials for the new home they are building down the road.

But my mind would not stay on my front yard. In church this morning, I got a little shock.

This is the blessing our pastor pronounced on us at the end of worship:

"Forget your blessings! Concentrate on the Blesser."

HUH????  When he said the words, my head jerked up and I thought WHAT???????????
I've pondered his words while rocking on the porch this nice, crisp, fall afternoon and it was a slap-the-forehead moment!!!
The Bless-ER.
The ONE Who provides life and breath and joy and crisp fall days.
The LORD of my life who holds me when I hurt, encourages me when I doubt, and leads me to go bravely into His work.
(Of course, He's slacked off some on that "bravely" part.) I an trying though and working hard to look at these Silver Senior Seventies as opportunities to adapt and learn and grow rather than groaning about change.
Thank you, Pastor J.

May you also look to The Blesser!!

Because He first loved me!
Four years ago--when the Yellow Bells were babies.