Say Yes

March 30, 2016

I am often amazed at the turns my life takes. If you had told me ten years ago that I’d help someone write a book, be helping with two more books, help start a ministry, and work occasionally for an assisted living facility, I’d have thought you were crazy.

Years ago I learned to look for opportunities, pray about them, then say yes if I knew that God had opened the door. All it takes is a willing spirit. Say yes, even if you’re scared. Say yes, even if you aren’t sure you can do it. Say yes, and see where it takes you.

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I’m Raggedy Ann

August 1, 2014

I have a little framed card in my closet* that says “I’m a Raggedy Ann girl in a Barbie Doll world.” I thought it was cute. I also find it accurate.

I was thinking about it recently. There are quite a few differences between Raggedy Ann and Barbie. Raggedy Ann is soft and squishy. Barbie is stiff and plastic.

I have slimmed down a bit, and I’m feeling good about how I look. However, I will never be the sophisticated, willow-thin woman we’re told we should be. I’m okay with that. I have some cushiony padding for those times when little ones climb into my lap, and I encourage them frequently to do just that. I like to think of myself as resilient like the machine-washable Raggedy Ann instead of impervious to the elements like Barbie.

Don’t get me wrong; there is room in this world for both Barbies and Raggedy Anns. Barbies are cool and sophisticated. Raggedy Anns are colorful and ordinary. I know a few Barbies, and I value their friendship. I’m just saying that I’m comfortable with exactly who I am.

*That’s not as weird as it sounds. I have a wonderful walk-in closet thanks to my amazing husband.


Michelle Duggar, Wendy Williams, and Me

March 1, 2014

Warning: This blog post deals with the subject of sex.

I’m a fan of The Wendy Williams Show. It’s the celebrity dish that I enjoy. She had an interesting bit on the other day about Michelle Duggar.

In case you’re not familiar with the Duggars, they are a large family that has a reality show on TLC, 19 Kids and Counting. Michelle and her husband have 19 children, though I understand a few of their children are now grown and on their own. I’d tell you more, but I’ve never seen the show. I have an antenna, so I don’t get TLC. Everything I know about them comes from entertainment shows and a couple of online-searches.

Back to Wendy Williams. During her Hot Topics segment she talked about an interview that Michelle Duggar had done. They asked Michelle about her secrets to a happy marriage. She suggested that a wife “say yes to sex even when you’re tired.” She went on to say that a friend told her “Be available. Anyone can fix him lunch, but only one person can meet that physical need of love that he has, and you always need to be available when he calls.” Wendy asked her audience to clap if they agreed. A majority of them did. Eventually Wendy admitted that she agreed, too, but would find the suggestion easier to accept from someone who “didn’t have that 80s hair.”

I found that really interesting. No, Michelle Duggar doesn’t have the latest hairstyle. She’s not a model. She’s the mother of a large brood. She lives in Tontitown, Arkansas. I’m not sure how big that town is, but I’m guessing it isn’t a large metropolis. She probably fits in well with her neighbors. And, I imagine she’s had some version of that hairstyle since the 80s. That’s what a lot of women do.

The thing is, it’s not Wendy Williams (or anyone else) she’s trying to attract or impress. Clearly her husband finds her attractive, even with “that 80s hair.” She’s not giving hair style advice. The way she looks has nothing to do with whether her advice (which she’d been asked to give) is good or bad.

For the record, I agree with Michelle Duggar. When I talk with someone about the physical side of marriage, I usually suggest that a wife be as available to her husband as possible. (I would also suggest that a husband be as available to his wife as possible, but I don’t usually have those conversations with men.) I suggest that if a woman isn’t really in the mood at the moment her husband makes his move, instead of saying no, she respond that she could be persuaded. Women usually need a little longer to switch gears than men do. When she’s doing the dishes, or the laundry, or helping the kids with their homework, she isn’t usually thinking sexy thoughts. A bit of extra snuggling can work wonders to help a woman switch from homemaker/mommy mode to sexy wife mode.

So, good for you, Michelle Duggar. It sounds like you have a solid, happy marriage.


He’s a Winner

November 21, 2013

I once read (I’d attribute it if I could remember where) that a man will gravitate toward where he feels successful. It made me think about the way we women often treat our husbands at home. Does my husband feel successful at home? Do I talk more about the things he does right or the things he does wrong? How about the things he hasn’t gotten done? When he walks in the door is he greeted with joy and love, or is he greeted with a list of things to do and a list of the things that have gone wrong?

I want to make sure that our home is the place my husband would most like to be in the whole world. I want him to know that I see him as a wonderful, talented man. I want him to know that I consider myself blessed to be his wife.

Yes, I’ll still remind him of the things that need to be done. But, that will only happen after I make absolutely sure he knows that he’s a winner in our home. If men gravitate to where they feel successful, I want to make sure our home has the strongest gravitational pull on him imaginable.


When You’ve Done Wrong

November 11, 2013

We all make mistakes. We all do the wrong thing occasionally (or more than occasionally). The way you handle things when you’ve done wrong says a lot about you. Do you blame others? Do you make excuses? Do you try to cover things up? Or, do you take responsibility. Face the consequences. Do your best to help minimize the repercussions of that mistake?

If you want to really shake up the person you report to, go to him or her the moment you realize you have made a mistake or misstep. Tell them what happened. Share anything you’ve done to rectify the situation. Apologize sincerely. If appropriate, share any ideas you have for making sure something similar doesn’t happen in the future. Accept whatever reprimand and/or penalty coming to you. Do your best to do better in the future.

In the interest of openness, let me confess that this blog idea came from a recent personal experience. I have a lot of responsibilities with my church. Recently, some of those responsibilities have changed—especially those concerning money. Up until recently it was my responsibility to deposit funds. We were expecting a donation to come by mail. When it arrived I attempted to contact the man now in charge of making deposits. When I couldn’t get hold of him I decided to go ahead and deposit the check, since I knew we were counting on those funds. I then let both him and our pastor know that I’d done that. As I thought about it, I realized I had completely overstepped my bounds. Though I was simply doing what seemed logical at the time, that was not my call to make. I texted both men that I realized I had surpassed my authority and assured them it would not happen again. The next morning I sent a text of apology to my pastor (he wasn’t in a situation where I could call), telling him I realized that what I had done was a breach of both procedure and his trust. I asked for forgiveness, which was immediately given. I then called the man whose authority I had usurped. Again, I apologized and assured him it would never happen again. He told me that he was floored by my text the day before, since I hadn’t waited to be admonished. He accepted my apology and told me he knew and appreciated my heart.

This incident came, of course, after years of handling these things the wrong way—mostly hoping that my errors wouldn’t be noticed or called to anyone’s attention. I have to say, though, that taking care of this right away helped to lift a burden from my heart.


Hi, I Can’t Talk

November 7, 2013

I used to get miffed; now I just get curious. Why do people answer the phone if they can’t talk?

Don’t get me wrong. I understand answering when you don’t have an hour and a half to chat. But, there is one person in particular in my life who will answer saying, “I can’t talk. Can I call you back?” Well, yes, you most certainly may call me back. But, why in the world did you answer in the first place?

I grew up in the days before answering machines. In those days you answered a ringing phone as if it were an emergency, because if you didn’t you had no way of knowing who it was or what they wanted. With the advent of answering machines, (followed by voicemail and caller ID) there’s no longer a need to rush for a ringing phone as if a life depended on it.

I would also understand it if I called several times in a row as if it were extremely important that I talk with this person. I don’t.

Here’s my suggestion. Unless you have about five minutes of time to ascertain the purpose for the call and any action that might need to be taken, don’t answer. You can see that it’s me. I’ll leave a message. Call me back at your convenience. Or, text me an answer if you’re going to be unable to get back to me anytime soon. I’ll understand.

Really, why do people do that?


Changes for the Better

January 13, 2012

There have been a lot of changes in my life lately. One big change is a new job. No, I’m not stopping my social marketing/direct sales business. But, I do have a new adventure. I’m excited about it.

The funny thing is that I was not looking for a new job. Things were going well. I have frequently told people that jobs will not come to you; you have to go looking for them. I realized that three of the last four jobs I’ve had came to me. Then again, I wasn’t sitting at home watching game shows. I was out there. I was meeting people. I was sharpening my skills I was learning new skills. If you want new things in your life, you must be continually preparing for them.

My new job is connected to a ministry that I’m excited about. It fits my skills and my passions. I couldn’t have imagined that I’d be invited to participate in this way, but I’m looking forward to all that the future will bring.

So, if you’re not doing exactly what you’d like to be doing, what you are doing to prepare yourself for that job? What are you doing to make yourself into the person you want to be? Changes for the better don’t happen by accident. They’re a result of the changes you choose to make within yourself.