The Healer

Has anyone spoken to you and they say something that stops you immediately?

I’m texting with a sweet friend the other day. We are chatting about my very sick family member. I shared the details and then she asked me “does she know her healer?”

I immediately responded yes, knowing that she meant Jesus.

I have pondered that question for a while and this month, this week, today……the day a new President takes office, are you speaking to the healer?

Jesus is not only the healer of bodies.

He is the healer of a nation

He is the healer of relationships

He is the healer of hearts

He is the healer of time

Today…..reach out to someone

Speak of your love and admiration to them. Share that they are thought of.

Stay away from the news

Read a book

Play with a child

Sit with the sunshine on your face

Thank our “healer” for His love and for the story that will unfold.

Our stories are written already. We are to obedient and wait for the page to turn.

Today, we are having a generator installed at our home The electricity has been off for a few hours and I sit in the sweet solitude and thank my healer for you

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1095 days

You left 1095 days ago and every year in December since 2017 I get nostalgic.

Around the first of the month, I get a little sad.

I miss you

We all do

While the days and months are easier, December is still hard.

2020 has been weird. You would be so weary of this quarantine nonsense. You would roll your eyes and make all kinds of noises allowing everyone to know your disgust with the whole dang thing.

Today, as I put away Christmas decorations, I began to think of some of my friends who have had to say goodbye to someone close to them this year.

At the same time, I thought that you might be spending time with them! They were your friends too and I smiled a little just thinking about it.

When Robby busted through those gates, wirey little thing that he was, I could just seeing him whopping and hollering like he used to for his favorite sports team. I bet you hollered right beside him as you welcomed him in.

I bet you hugged Pat Ball just like you used to when you stepped into the church each and every Sunday. I hope she talked about me just a little. I miss that old girl a bunch.

Sy had the biggest smile when he got there didn’t he? He probably had on his cute hat and he patted you great big on your back when you met up. Give him a great big hug from me. Ok?

Just last week, Suzy showed up in Heaven. Christi is so sad and misses her something fierce but I bet she might be comforted knowing that she’s with you, Aunt Evelyn and Uncle Dick. (I wish I had a photo ❤️)

I bet you are in the welcoming committee. You, Billy, Buford, Al and all your other old croanies. Sitting next to your old cars, playing some honky tonk and shooting the breeze. Are you still kicking butt at dominoes? Kate thinks she wins down here 🙄

Be super sweet to my friends who are new there. Their families are sad and the holidays are extra hard. You were always good at making people smile.

Moms doing fine. The family is growing again and another little boy will learn about Papa PeeWee soon.

We are all taking good care of one another. Don’t you worry.

I’ll meet you at the gate.

Love,

Your baby girl

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Looking Outward

Tuesday morning I got a text from my friend Shannon. It said:

I have to tell you my story later. I was being ungrateful today

A little while later, she called me. I am in bed with the crud and feeling pretty inward.

The fever

The cough

The aches and pains

Ugh ……. poor me

Her story starts as she was getting out of her warm bed this morning, extra early because of a sunrise breakfast being put on to honor the employees at Interfaith Emergency Services.

She was grumbling about leaving so dang early

She was mad that it is cold and it’s freaking sunrise

She was frustrated and just a little inward

Shannon was meeting up with another employee at the thrift store so they could drive together. Upon entering the parking lot, she noticed a man sleeping on the porch.

She says to me “I’m sure he’s thinking I’m going to throw him off the porch, because that’s what happens to the homeless when they camp out in front of a business.”

Instead, I walked into the store, I grabbed the warmest coat I could find, some dry socks and some extra things I thought that might keep him warm during this cold snap in Florida.

She continues to talk as we both tear up. “I’m so grateful for a place to work that gives me the opportunity to give people basic needs.”

Shannon’s morning started off inward and a little sad but as she reached outward, saw the needs of others, stepped in with her abilities, her day was profoundly improved.

I am so thankful for friends who want to share their lives with me

It’s not all about the great things

It’s not all about the bad times

It’s about life and how we can be better

Together

How are you looking outward today, this week and as we enter into 2021?

*I was given permission to use names and photos

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There are Kind People

I have the crud

Currently if you get the sniffles, a sore throat, a stomach ache or anything in between it’s COVID

Normally, a little fever and a cough would mean crawl into bed with some soup and ibuprofen for a couple of day’s and all is well.

COVID has made us scared and I don’t like it at all

Our home is full of vulnerable people. Mom is of an age that would be detrimental if she contracted COVID. Courtney is pregnant and I don’t know any research on women and unborn babies. We have two small children. While I know they are not in a dangerous bracket, I will not take chances. Men need to work, book clubs are cancelled, coffee hour is postponed and so on and so on.

This morning, Steve drove me to a clinic that provides rapid testing. I would have just drove through CVS but it’s CHRISTMAS WEEK PEOPLE. I needed to know if I had COVID and would be quarantined though the next two weeks. I am mad just thinking about it.

I spent 1 1/2 hours outside standing in line, in the cold, with a fever. I spent 4 hours huddled in a waiting room, wrapped up in Steves oversized coat, wearing two masks and dodging stares every time I coughed.

All this to say

I do not have COVID

I do not have influenza (have you had that q-tip shoved all the way to your brain?)

I have the crud

When I was standing in line outside, I’m sure I looked pathetic and a little ridiculous trying to stay warm. When the line proceeded closer to the door, a woman, who I watched as she read her Bible while standing in line, turns around to me and said “it’s obvious you are very sick, would you please take my place in line?” I immediately teared up and tried to diminish my sickness. She would not take my no and wished me a Merry Christmas and immediately fell in behind me in line. She handed me literature and I promised to read it

As I neared the door, another woman said the same thing and let me be the next to go through the door into the warmth. I might have cried for a good 5 minutes.

While today sucked

There are no other words that would describe it. I am not harboring a sickness that could harm my people. I will be ok in a couple days. I will not miss Christmas Eve service at church. I’ll be able to enjoy Christmas morning.

While things are rough. So many people are suffering and this Christmas might not look like the others…….there are some kind people and I hope I can follow in those two ladies footsteps as soon as the crud is gone

For now, all I have is this beauty of a photo AFTER I found out I was COVID free.

Merry Christmas week

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What to Write…..

I spoke to a friend on the phone recently. Not text but an actual voice conversation. I’m guilty of texting A LOT.

It’s easier

I can say what needs to be said and move on

So guilty of checking off the box

This friend, I’ll call her Esther, said “write a blog post.” You always say what others are thinking and don’t know how to say it. I responded “I don’t have anything to say.” Quiet or unresponsive has never been something that I would be known for. Loud, opinionated, obnoxious. Those are more my style.

After we chatted for a while, we hung up and I went on with my day. I think I was painting shutters. Really cute, handmade shutters that Steve wanted to hang up that night so I really needed to get them done. Now our guests will not blinded by the sunlight.

I wanted them to match the sweet shutters in the same room built by my sweet daddy and myself before he changed his address to heaven almost 3 years ago.

As I painted, my conversation with Esther rattled around in my brain. I stewed about for a while and then turned on a podcast to listen to.

I just couldn’t concentrate. So I put down my paintbrush and said a prayer.

“What do you want me to do God? I’m feeling a little wonky these days and I don’t like it. Not even a little bit. I don’t want to feel inward. Help me to know what to do.”

Do you know what he said?

Call Dee.

My sweet friend and second Momma Ms. Dee. Her daughter died a couple of weeks ago unexpectedly and I hadn’t spoken to her. I was scared I wouldn’t know what to say. It hurts like crazy when you lose someone you love. It’s lonely and scary. It’s heartbreaking and sometimes people don’t want to talk. They would rather be left alone. I didn’t want to be a bother.

I called her. Not a text. Not a message through Mom.

When she answered all she said was “I’m so glad to hear your sweet voice. I miss you.” I apologized for not calling sooner and I told her I was afraid I wouldn’t know what to say. she said “you know exactly what to say. You loved your Daddy like I loved my girl.”

We cried together

We laughed together

I’m still not sure everything we talked about but she knows I love her and she loves me back.

I feel like I’m rambling on and I still don’t feel like I have a lot to say but if you get that nudge to do something, call someone, get someone something……… do it

You won’t be sorry

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Chosen Family

As we watched a television show last week, a phrase was used……… chosen family. They spoke of people, no one that shares your DNA, not blood relatives not even a distant 4th cousin. It means people that are close like sisters, families that bond together through heartache or happiness, those that you share your inter-most feelings with. The people who are like family.

As we sat around the Thanksgiving table today, we spoke of gratefulness. I shared my thankfulness for our family. It’s easy to take advantage of the people we can always count on. The ones that share our roof and those that come each and every time they can. The ones that cook meals when it’s their turn, who babysit as often as they can, the ones who will stay home when the dishwasher repairman comes or will help carry a piece of furniture that weighs 1000 pounds up three flights of stairs.

But chosen family is sometimes overlooked. They will scoop leaves and brush the pool when we go out of town, they will call for prayer because they know I will drop immediately and pray for them and I can do the same. They will bring toilet paper when Dad died and we had so many people staying with us there was not enough of me to go around. They leave things on our porch because they know it would bring a smile. They randomly send a meme or a token of love. These tokens of love do not go unnoticed. So many things…..sometimes just a hug (before stupid COVID)

This year has been hard. It has been so different and we have had to make compromises. But as we round the corner into the holidays and today we think about all the things we are thankful for….I’m so thankful for the people whom share my DNA but my chosen family , you know who you are, I can’t really express my love.

It’s just too big.

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The Beauty Or the Crack

Steve and I have been working on a long overdue project this week.

It’s going to be fantastic, but sometimes things don’t go as planned

I bought this old stained glass window from a friend a few years ago. It has been moved and displayed with never a definite plan in mind. Finally, it was going to get a permanent home and it would be perfect

As I cleaned and scraped and prepared the window, one of the panes cracked.

I cried!!! This antique, fantastic piece of art is ruined. I called the glass shop and they don’t do soldering . What do I do?

Plan B?

I don’t have one!

Then I started thinking……we live in a 1903 home that has endured so many years of history, abuse and life as we put her back together. Me, as a human, has screwed up some many times and I have many many cracks.

So I asked Steve “do you want me to find something else to replace it?” He said “nope.”

Some people in my life will come into our home and immediately point out the crack. That’s ok. They see it, it’s not a lie. But I choose to embrace the crack. Just like me.

If you notice the broken pane, maybe look to the immediate next pane and see the beauty.

Happy Saturday

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The Poke

Do you ever feel a poke? A finger slightly poking you on your shoulder (not really poking!) a nudge in your brain telling you to do something? If you follow Jesus, we would say it’s the Holy Spirit. If you don’t follow Jesus, maybe it’s your conscious, maybe it’s your Mom whispering in your ear (not really whispering).

You get it!?

The other day, I was texting with a friend. I wanted to get my facts straight before connecting with a new friend from our Coffee Hour group. (You should totally come to Coffee Hour!) This new friend was missed and I wanted to tell her. It was a poke earlier in the day. The poke said “Don’t forget Charma, people like to be missed. How do they know, if you don’t tell them.”

It’s so easy to get swirly in the day. We all have full lives. It seems as if the days go faster. There’s never enough time. However there is time to scroll socials, there’s time for that favorite TV show or to watch 14 episodes on Netflix.

I’m guilty!!

Sometimes the poke gets pushed to the side. Sometimes it gets forgotten. However I believe in the poke. I believe it’s important to listen to that nudge.

Sometimes I receive someone else’s poke. I got a text Saturday morning. It was kind, it was comforting, it was sweet and it made me cry a little. We often wonder if we are doing the right thing. If we are a good friend, a confidant, a capable employee, a supportive family member.

When I’m doubting myself, often I get a sweet message or confirmation that I’m doing something right.

The poke is factual. It’s a real thing. I will continue to be careful not to avoid those little reminders, that tapping on my shoulder (not really tapping!) the nudge………

It’s not hard

Try it today.

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Smiling behind the mask

Since March, life has just been……..

Weird?

Crazy?

Sad?

How many other adjectives can 2020 be described as?

Every time I have to wear a mask to go out in public I’m shocked this is what we now must do .

I always look at people and I want them to see I’m smiling at them. How does one do that with a mask on?

I was so very lucky to go on a business trip with Steve to the beach this week. While the world has been topsy turvy for so long and we’ve all spent a lot of time in our homes surrounded by the same four walls, it’s a welcome sight to be in the world and see that some things haven’t changed.

I watched the sunset from the balcony.

I watched the birds forage for their food. COVID 19 does not change the fact that if they don’t search for their food, they will be hungry.

This small family positioned themselves just right with the waves to their rear. They had a baby that they were obviously very proud of. They picked the perfect setting to have memories with their sweet family. COVID can not take that away.

Smile. It doesn’t take much to use those muscles. One day, we won’t have to wear a mask and we can go back to not having to wonder if someone sees the smile. For now, raise your eyebrows, show those crows feet. Make it obvious.

People need to see smiles

Happy Friday!

Charma

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I Heard It From A Friend

I have great friends that will call me when they see something I might like. It might be a piece of furniture, a decoration, a piece of clothing, etc.

I take it as a huge complement that people will see something and my face comes to mind.

This ugly, broken, spider web infested piece was the latest piece I dragged home.

What does one do with something so lovely?

Entry table?

Desk?

Nope. I think it should be a ………::

Kitchen island.

The first step was to clean, repair and prime. I also added some really big casters

I searched and searched for baskets or containers that would fit the shelves. Nothing was exact size I wanted so I grabbed some wood and a saw and made them myself

The final paint choice was a creamy off white. The cutest handle was purchased for the drawer as well as two towels bars for each side

It was delivered to its new home last week.

The best part? It was bought for the sweetest couple who are working on their home together. While my pieces might not be shiny new, I have used the skills I have learned to bring it back to life. Each one holds a special place and I love when someone sees someone else in one of my projects and decides that person needs it. It’s like a full circle.

My business scripture is Isaiah 54:7.
“For a brief moment I abandoned you, but with deep compassion I will bring you back.

I will continue looking at the side of the road for trash pieces, I hope others will continue to see me in pieces they see.

I hope to continue hearing from friends .

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