That is Love

This morning, sitting still in the front porch swing, I felt an overwhelming sense of love. It was the most wonderful feeling. It welled up inside of me, and wanted to become tears, but I held it inside to hold onto that moment.

It only got better from there.

You know I frequent a small town coffee-house.

The coffee is a bonus. It’s the people I gravitate toward. Today, their love and kindness blew me away. God had it all lined up for me to walk in at just the right moment. The owner was making something specifically for my heart.

I walked in and he yelled, “Barbara! I am making something for you!” The timing is what amazed me, because I rarely walk in the same time of day. My daughter said, “When they know you all too well at the coffee shop?” That is true love.

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He had bought a beautiful pour over, along with my favorite kettle! I was literally screaming in awe of this magnificent sight! He was beaming with excitement. It was a moment.

He said that he envisioned my daughter and I sitting at a table, sharing this moment. He would be right. Just the other day, my daughter said she wished he had a pour over.

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God gave me another Patron! That is love.

A friend takes time out of her busy schedule each day to send a video of her life, and thoughts. That is love.

You are here, taking time to read this. That is love.

A Vintage hat box full of stars. That is love.

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Full of Stars

When my daughter was small, I imitated Martha Stewart.

She doesn’t remember much of the grand lifestyle, but the one thing she remembers, and misses, are the stars on the Christmas tree every year. I find it humourous this would be the one thing to stick with her. The stars were made of paper, and sold in a kit created by Martha Stewart.

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During my mammogram appointment, they asked me to lay on a table for the sonogram. I did so, and looked up to a view of paper flowers hanging from the ceiling. They were simply beautiful, and reminded me of these stars.

When I left my marriage, Christmas ornaments were not a priority, so the box of stars were left behind. There is no telling where they are today, but the great thing about a material object is… It can eventually be replaced.

A year ago, I searched, found and purchased a kit on Etsy.

It has been 20 years since making them, so I had to follow the instructions, and refresh my memory. It went smoothly until the part came where the paper stands up in fours points. I couldn’t get it to do it, and it was very frustrating.

God placed people in my life who taught me patience.

I’ve been sitting in the middle of my bed making stars.

My daughter will have a Christmas tree full of stars again.

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Everyday Feels Special

Walking into my bedroom, this made my heart happy.

My daughter had hung a banner, and not just any banner. I could tell she had chosen it specifically for my heart. The triangles are printed with a beautiful pattern, and you hand string it on a satin ribbon, to make it the length you want.

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Out of the four walls, she chose the one with the ‘Happiness’ sign. She knew I would notice it immediately upon walking in. It was her way of saying, “Happy Birthday!”

My birthday was Saturday, so she hung this the night before. It will hang long past my birthday just because it’s pretty to look at, and it’s from her. That’s just what we do.

She had bought the banner at one of our favorite shops, so she took me there on my birthday. This shop has unique items, leaning toward the artsy, and handcrafted. Every item is quite expensive, but for some reason it’s okay there. We don’t go with purchases in mind. We love walking in, and through the store. Seeing so much pretty in one place.

While there, we found a newly opened doorway, and stood there mesmerized. They had expanded and opened a back room to place sale items. Even the sale sign above the door was no ordinary sign. Each letter was made to look like fresh-cut topiaries. I realized the thing I loved most about this store was their attention to every little detail.

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It held items marked half price, in hopes of finding a home. There were not many things in the room, but they were fun to see, and yes, I bought an Earl Grey Shea body lotion.

On our way out, we always stop and look at the cards.

They say things you normally don’t say outloud, so they strike us as fun. One card in particular caught my attention. If it would have been my daughter’s birthday, and she was a little older, I would have gotten this card for her.

Once we returned home, she handed me the card she had filled out the night before. She had chosen it as my birthday card, and  it was the same one I was looking at for her.

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The What If’s

My daughter filled the crock pot with wonderfulness yesterday. I am not sure what all it has in it, but it’s true love in a mug. Some of it was Almond milk, Espresso, pumpkin puree, maple syrup, and fall spices. I saved what was left and placed it in the fridge. We don’t own a microwave, so there was something about heating it up in a small pan on the stove that placed me directly in happiness mode.

I took time this weekend to read some Blogs I follow.

For some reason it was like some of their words jumped off the screen at me. They gave me the strength to reopen my Patreon page. A few Bloggers that I follow use Patreon. One is Little Fears. Anyone that writes about Little Fears is brave in my mind. He is usually the first Blogger to ‘like’ my posts.

After working on my Patreon page, I sent the link to a friend. She said, “I will support you!” That is not what I was expecting. I just wanted her opinion about what it said, and how it looked. It warmed my heart to know that she would.

She asked, “What if each reader gave $1?” She also reminded me, “If you don’t ask, the answer is always no.”

So, I scanned through some other Patreon pages, and found one that brings in over $5,000 a month. He has over 5,000 Patrons. Her philosophy worked for him, so what if?

Personally, I wouldn’t know what to do with that much money a month. I would be able to quit my job, write full-time, and publish a book. What if that happened? I would be happier than I already am. Am I fearful of being happier than I already am? Let’s keep moving forward, and find out.

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Healing in Hugs

I saved the last cookie for my daughter. She broke it in half, and brought half over to me. This is how we live our life.

We are sitting at the table together. She is doing school while I write. There is a difference between living together, and being present. When I stepped away from Social Media, I realized we didn’t hug each other as much as we once did. It was time for that to change. There is healing in hugs.

Some of my favorite daily activities now include, sitting at the counter of my favorite coffee shop, and being present for the person working behind the counter. To walk into one of the shops downtown, and hug the owner for no reason than they’re there another day. People in town wave when they see my truck. How many of those waves were missed?

I freely give my laugh, a listening ear, a smile, and hugs.

My daughter is finding her way through this life, and the only thing I have done different is to be present, and give hugs.

It was awkward at first for me to just walk up and hug her, so to lighten it up, I counted. I’d hug her and say, “There’s one.” In my mind there was a minimum of three a day.

She is almost as tall as me now, but it’s still a hug, and it heals. Somedays three is all we can remember to do, but there are those special days we lose count, and just hug.

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You Haveta Wanna

This Blog post is for anyone suffering from an addiction.

To overcome the addiction, you have to want to. Your ‘want to‘ has to become bigger than it. God created us to be overcomers, and because He has overcome the world, there is nothing we cannot overcome through Him.

I give credit to AA for giving me the relationship I have with God today. The first 3 steps are all about God, and this scares some people away, but He took the desire to drink away from me. I will happily spend the rest of my life serving Him, because I get to enjoy life sober.

There will always be an excuse to drink. Someone asked me once, “How do you know you’re an alcoholic?” Because normal people can have one drink, and stop. My one drink was the entire bottle of wine. To numb the feelings that were bubbling up inside of me. When I stopped drinking, I had to feel those feelings. With sobriety there is no hiding.

When you stop drinking, you meet all the parts of yourself you have been at war with. Face them.

If I didn’t face my feelings, I would drink, but I also knew those same feelings would still be there once I sobered up again. Pouring alcohol over those feelings was a temporary fix, not to mention all the stupid stuff I did while drinking.

That just added to the horror of what I was trying to drown.

It’s no big secret how to stay sober. Go to meetings. That means I have to shower, get in my truck, and drive, and then walk into a room full of strangers. Not necessarily. You can sit in front of a computer screen in an online meeting. I did that. I also drank wine while watching what was being said in that online meeting. You cannot hide and stay sober.

My fear of waking up hungover, and not remembering what I said and did is real. I will go to any length to enjoy this life God has given me sober. My ‘want to’ is bigger than any fear.

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Everyday is Different

My daughter brought home a case of these yesterday.

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This is happiness. Butter and coffee. What is not to love?

Our dog was laying by her bedroom door today, while she was on the phone. She opened her door to step out, and he moved out of the way.  She asked, “Was Mochee laying by my door this whole time?” She was barefoot, and noticed the warmth of the hard wood floor where he had been laying. I love that she notices these small details of life.

Our landlord is burning brush in the field next to us, and all we can think about is wanting to roast marshmallows.

Now it is night, and I stepped out on the porch a few minutes ago. Living in the country, you always where shoes stepping out there at night. Every now and then you will find a Scorpion hanging out on the porch too. Our ginormous, white, barn cat is laying on the step. He will take down a Scorpion for the person who cares for him.

I feel more at ease with him laying there. We named this cat ‘Meh’. because he doesn’t fully meow, he just says, ‘Meh.’

Everyday is different, and I love that about our life.

At night before bed, my daughter and I talk about what we would like to accomplish the next day. It’s not set in stone. We stay flexible throughout the day, and let life flow. We make a plan, but also make adjustments where needed. If it’s that important, it will get done, but when it’s time.

I haven’t found anything more important than just spending time together, and making adjustments throughout the day for each other’s happiness.

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Stand up Straight

I am still learning my way through plants.

The first thing I learned is, the care tags are not always accurate. Plants, just like humans, don’t have the same level of care. You have to watch, and see what they need.

This Asparagus Fern is a great example. Knowing it enjoyed part shade, I kept it out of direct sun, but then I noticed something. While sitting in the shade, the new growth seemed to be reaching, or stretching toward the light.

With the seasons changing, I sat it where it would receive more sun, but only for a few hours. Something else I’ve learned is, everything enjoys light, but not direct sunlight.

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Being in more light, the new growth is standing up straight.

This reminded me of a Meme I came across lastnight.

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Stopping to Go

Today, I gave my daughter the day off from being my daughter.

She harbors these ‘people pleasing’ abilities that will wear off over time. Her father’s hectic life is adding stress to hers, but he needs her more than I do right now. Not wanting to add to an already stressful situation, I encouraged her not to come home today as planned. She was grateful.

It’s my favorite time of day to sit in the middle of the bed. I grabbed one of my favorite platters, and filled it with Gouda, Organic cream cheese with Raspberry Chipotle sauce, Rosemary crackers, and black seedless grapes. The jury is still out whether this is a snack, or an early dinner.

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I went to an AA meeting at noon. I was in the midst of cleaning house, and didn’t mind stopping to go, if God saw fit. Walking through the motions of getting ready, I told God, “If you really want me to go, everything will fall into place seamlessly.” At 11:40, I was ready to walk out the door.

Walking into the meeting, I noticed a young lady sitting there that I haven’t seen before. She had made a similar deal with God.

“Okay God, If you want me to go to this meeting, someone will walk in that I need to see.”

Long story short, she asked me to be her temporary sponsor.

This is the second woman in the past 30 days that God has placed in my path to sponsor. I have no clue how to be a sponsor, but I know how to stay sober, and I can coach.

I sat down yesterday, and came across this page in SC Lourie’s new journal. It sums up precisely where I am today.

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The photo may be hard to read. Here is what it says.

“I had to stop waiting. Waiting to be that person I always hoped I would become. Waiting for that person to rescue me. Waiting until I felt ready. Waiting until I had healed. Waiting until I got things right. Waiting until I was seen, noticed, acknowledged, or remembered. Waiting for that ultimate day somewhere in the future that would change everything. Soon after, I realised something. You are either waiting, or you are living. I choose to live. To end the wait.” SC Lourie

 

Feel the Music

This song came up in my Facebook memories today.

It was 4 years ago that I posted it, and it still resonates with me. Brad Paisley is singing it as a country-style love song, would be my guess, but I took it as a generalization.

I was talking to someone yesterday about my passion to help people lay down their phones. It’s pretty out of control today, and may look insurmountable, but where there’s a will, there’s a way. His response was, “You can’t change it.”

That comment struck a match and lit a flame inside me.

I met a girlfriend this morning for coffee. She uninstalled Facebook and Messenger from her phone last week. Today, she proudly announced, “I didn’t even bring my phone!” I was so happy for her, and felt silly for bringing mine!

Maybe it’s not the world that needs changing. Maybe it’s us.