Thursday, March 29, 2007

Deep Blue Sea.....


"Sit down young children, on my sandy shore...I am the deep blue sea....
I have a story for every boy and girl who will listen to me......

See, I was born in a thunderstorm, and as a raindrop I felt so free...
'Til I was taken from the river I loved...She was like a mother to me....

It's true my waters are fraught with danger, but I need you to believe...
That I have never hurt an honest sailor or battered your homes with my seas.....

Gusts from the North Wind, gusts from the South Wind.. .gusts from the West and from the East....
They trespass on me, they raise my fury. They make me foam and they make me boil...

I have a friend....One that I love. Her name is the Moon...she holds me close.
When she gets thirsty, I let her drink... When morning comes, I lay her back down to sleep...

You may ask, child, how old I am, well I'm as old as there is time...
Anchors have scarred my deep blue heart, and the whalemen robbed me blind...

End times are 'comin... I will give up all these souls that I have hid...

And in the firelight, I will return to the place I did begin....


I have a friend, one that I love..... her name is the Moon...she holds me close...

When she gets thirsty, I let her drink...when morning comes, I lay her back down to sleep...."


-Mark Mathis



This song by Mark Mathis has been haunting me ever since I heard it. Every once in a while I hear a song that gives my soul shivers.....this is one of those. You can listen to it here. Click on "Deep Blue Sea".


The photo was taken of me standing on the shore of Ireland during a solo three week backpacking trip....
After being in Ireland, I can envision sitting on the sandy shore and having the sea speak to me like this.....there is enchantment everywhere.....

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

WORDLESS WEDNESDAY....

Early Evening Shadows


For more Wordless Wednesdays, go here.




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March 28

Father, set the lonely in families. Specifically I pray for Doug, that a loving family knowledgeable about older child adoptions will give him a forever home.



Sunday, March 25, 2007

Nature's Playground........
With the advent of the first official day of Spring, came a lovely Spring day. We held our weekly playgroup at a nearby park where all the moms and kids basked in the sun, blue skies, and the opportunity to be outside after the long winter months. As I've said before, I am so grateful to be able to raise my son in such a beautiful part of the world and that nature IS his playground. With the lure that electricity brings- video games, T.V.,
and computers, it can be an uphill battle to instill that love and respect for Creation. And not only enjoying being outside in nature, but learning about it- knowing that the acorns he finds are from an Oak tree, and the little purple flower popping out of the ground is a crocus, and the river that we drive by everyday is the Potomac. Things learned best outside, at play.....not in an artificial environment like a classroom, where many pre-school age children spend their days and learn about nature and their world vicariously. As Charlotte Mason wisely stated about educating children, "Never be within doors when you can rightly be without."


I spent my childhood days out in nature on our 65 acre farm in Kentucky....being inside on a nice day would have been torture for me. I hope to pass that legacy on to my son. Leave No Child Inside is a relevant and thought-provoking article on the loss of outside play for children and it gives suggestions on how we can reverse this trend in our own communities. Take a look if you have a moment.....










Thursday, March 22, 2007

Recently Seen.......




I've Seen Better Days......




The Static Cling Scene.......




The Seldom Scene.....


(As a sidenote....This last photo was taken after a long day of fighting pirates, jousting, and defending castles at the Maryland Rennaissance Festival . Being Sir Laughsalot can be a very tiring job!)


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Pray for...

Pray for "Kevin"-waiting
Father, set the lonely in families. Specifically I pray for Kevin, that a loving family will adopt him and provide for his education.

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

March........ In Living Color........
These were taken on two different days, as you can see from the skies......























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March 20

Lord, raise up workers for the harvest. Raise up Christians who will take responsibility for orphans, so that we will no longer abdicate their care to governments and institutions.

Sunday, March 18, 2007

An Appalachian March...........
I think this will be a week of photographs here on Ruminations. We had another March snowstorm over the weekend and decided to be adventurous and take a drive to look for photo opportunities. As I've mentioned before, you don't have to look very hard here in the beautiful Appalachian mountains. I'm going to start with black and white and then, in a couple of days, do the same photos in color. I'd like to hear your feedback as to which you prefer, because I couldn't decide. They each have a totally different feel to me. So, here is a little glimpse of March in Appalachia.........














A Good Read:
I just read a great post by Fred First called "Giving Nature Back to Our Children".......You can go HERE and link over to the PDF file. It's a worthwhile read....something that needs to be thought about and pondered in this increasingly electronic and nature-deprived world.

Saturday, March 17, 2007

Yeah, baby!!!! Second round is Sunday.......... :)

UPDATE: My beloved Wildcats just lost in the second round to Number 1 seed, Kansas...NO Sweet 16 for us this year.... Bummer! My hubby had the Haagen Dazs waiting........
My only consolation is that we made it farther than Duke. :)

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Let There Be Light.......


Light is a necessity in my life. I am like a sunflower, face turned upward, soaking up the light and heat. I love my house because of the huge windows that let the light pour in. The light from my kitchen window, above, greets me in the mornings as I rise to make coffee... early light of day beginning to filter through.

My life has not always been filled with light. There have been times of darkness....emotional, mental, and spiritual darkness...darkness that sometimes threatened to overshadow the light. And during these times of darkness, I had to rely on a different type of Light....the Light of the world:
" When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." John 8:12

The darkness started in my teen years, when I first started experiencing the symptoms of Depression. But back then, there weren't commercials with checklists of symptoms. I didn't understand it or have a name for it so I basically struggled through it. My solution when it would come was to try to run from it, sometimes physically, sometimes emotionally. Although I had a couple of "clinical" bouts with depression throughout my late teen years and early 20's, the Light delivered me safely on the other side .
"The light shines in the darkness, and the darkness can never extinguish it." John 1:5

I had learned to recognize the triggers and warning signs by the time I was in my 20's, through good Christian counsel and the prayers of my brothers and sisters of faith. I had Scripture that I held close to my heart and spoke it into my life often. I learned how to turn my thoughts and focus in other directions. But, when I was 26, another life circumstance sent me into a hormonal whirly-dervish and I experienced one of the darkest years of my life. This event was having a child......

What is supposed to be a joyous and exciting time in most lives was not for me. I anticipated with joy and happiness the arrival of my son and he was very much wanted and very much loved, in the womb and afterwards. But what was usually just a couple weeks of baby blues for some, turned into a year of Post-partum Depression for me. I have never experienced the power of hormones so much in my life as during that time, where I felt completely out of control of my emotions and thoughts. It was actually something I could feel physically.......

My son, Sir Laughsalot, was a Christmas baby, and born during a particularly harsh, bitter, and long winter. We were living in my husband's hometown and I didn't know very many people, other than my former co-workers. My husband was working long hours, leaving around 7 A.M. and sometimes not returning home until 8 or 9 p.m....and we were living in a small house that received very little natural light. This was topped off with Sir Laughsalot getting Bronchiolitis and having to have a nebulizer every night when he was only 2 weeks old, his nursing mommy getting a case of very painful mastitis, and being surrounded by anxious and negative voices. The extreme isolation and bone-numbing exhaustion paired with no help, encouragement, or support is what I believe pro-longed my depression.

That period, what I consider my darkest days, is when I depended on Light the most. I remember every afternoon, around 4 p.m., I would feel a tangible darkness that came with the onset of dusk. As the light faded from the sky, I would feel a physical oppression come over me. I would go around the house and turn every single light on until my husband arrived home. It was so strange to me and I couldn't escape it. I hated how it felt....it was ominous. We had a wonderful CD by Twila Paris called "Bedtime Prayers: lullabies and peaceful worship" that I would play and, to this day, I still remember the lyrics to one song in particular....they helped me get through my evenings and long nights. I'd sing them in my head at night when I would nurse and when I was so exhausted and anxious that I couldn't sleep:

"Do not be afraid little lamb, Trust Him while you are sleeping.
Angels over your cradle will stand, Silent watch they are keeping.
Think about these things, And love will guide your dreams.

And He will keep you in perfect peace...perfect peace....perfect peace
He will keep you in perfect peace, If you keep your mind on Him.

You are never alone little lamb, For the Father is near you.
You are tenderly held in His hand, Whisper and He will hear you.
Think about these things and love will guide your dreams........"

And my heavenly Father WAS with me all through that time..... he knew how much I could bear and didn't allow the darkness to consume me. Sir Laughsalot was a wonderful baby, happy and content...he nursed well, and slept well......and my husband went out of his way to help when he was home. I think God knew that having a colicky baby or an unsupportive husband would have been too much to bear on top of the depression. I cried out to God over and over during this time and He heard my cry. Towards the end of that year, I started to see the light again...He began to bring optimistic, encouraging, and supportive voices into my life. He surrounded me with an incredible, loving church family. He led us to a wonderful house and neighborhood. He brought me safely to the other side.....

"I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them." Isaiah 42:16


I am a sunflower, face turned upward, basking in the Light, love, and grace of my Redeemer....the One who replaced my spirit of despair with a garment of praise, who turned my ashes into beauty, and who brought Joy in the morning........

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

March Madness ..........
"Oh, my Cats! My Kentucky Wildcats! I love them." - Ashley Judd

It's that time of year!! If you are born in Kentucky, you are born a UK basketball fan........ it's in your blood. I am no exception to the rule, and this is the one time of year that my eyes will be glued to the TV most nights of the week. Our night is Friday, against Villanova.....and we'll go from there......hopefully.

Kentucky basketball and its fanbase is the stuff of legend. Here are some excerpts from Wikipedia's definition of Kentucky basketball :

"UK has some of the most loyal fans in the country. The recent renovation to Rupp Arena has added the E-Rupp-tion Zone, a popular place for students during basketball games......
The University of Kentucky Men's basketball team is considered one of the elite NCAA basketball programs, having earned a total of seven NCAA titles. UK is also the winningest men's college basketball program in the nation. Through the completion of the 2006 NCAA basketball tournament on 04/03/06, the Wildcats have a total of 1926 wins (North Carolina is second with a total of 1883 wins, and Kansas is third with a total of 1873 wins). UK's Rupp Arena has attained legendary status as one of the most difficult venues in the country for opponents to play."

My husband dreads this time of year, as Kentucky hasn't done well in the NCAA tournament for a while. He's probably wondering if we will have a repeat of a night several years ago when Kentucky was playing in the Elite 8. By the time they get that far, you are vested and can see the Championship looming. Well, this game was doomed, and hubby saw it coming. With about 2 minutes left in the game, he excused himself and ran up the street. By the time he got back, my dear Cats had lost and I was in tears...... but my husband knew this would be the scene.... and arrived with flowers and my favorite ice cream in hand.

Yes, folks......... it's that time of year again!!!!!

(sidenote: no, you are not hearing things! that's the ben harper video playing from my previous "wordless wednesday" post. i don't know how to adjust it to where it doesn't come on automatically.)

Friday, March 09, 2007

Wednesday, March 07, 2007