The art of prayer

When your daughter goes on vacation and texts you the following pictures after her flight into the jungle, you’d better know how to pray.


The truth is, my prayers at moments like these probably sound more like a toddler begging for candy at the store…

“PLEEEASE, OH PLEESSAAAEEE Lord keep my child safe- can you? can you please????? Please keep those crocs, snakes and wild monkies away and could you try to get her a better plane for her return flight Lord? one with wings that don’t look so “homemade-ish,” maybe one that’s big enough for a flight attendant and a drink cart?.. or at the very least one where the pilot has some privacy??😦 PLEEEASEEE???”


And yes my friends, I have four- FOUR– grown kids…and no, my eldest daughter and her boyfriend weren’t the only ones who chose a Zika hot-spot for their vacation; my son and his wife just returned from trust me, I had the good Lord on speed dial and was hammer calling Him like crazy..

Great shot..where’s the can of bug spray…😦..?

Then I reminded myself of a little experiment I tried this summer..a period of no prayer requests- just thanks. I remembered how freeing it felt to short-circuit my habit of “hyper- praying.” I know the bible tells us to pray, and we should, but sometimes the very act of urgently praying takes on an oppressive, obsessive quality and instead of feeling relief, I feel almost superstitiously chained to the act.

Thanksgiving on the other hand is completely liberating.

I am quite literally handing my concerns, my cares, my kids over to the Lord and thanking Him for everything. The minute I feel myself defaulting to anxious supplication (haha) I immediately override those thoughts with a fresh flood of thanks. When I focus on gratitude my anxiety melts away and I am able to focus on that which I’d otherwise miss..

Because after-all, my daughter sent these wondrous pictures too…












What’s the matter with me??

What an AWESOME week-end I had! No- we didn’t do anything crazy..I was just able to GET OUT OF THE HOUSE for the first time in 5 days!

I’m not complaining..really..our tile guy is here and we are finally- FINALLY- finishing up our master bathroom! The guy laying the tile is very thorough (slow), very talkative and usually starts his day at around 10am-ish the project is moving along at a turtle’s pace.  Of course we ran out of shower tile as well- clearly, that didn’t help.

So yes,  I get to stay home some more..

But it’s all good, all good..especially if he gets done tomorrow..which can’t happen if he doesn’t come today….and you know how it is- you just never really know until they show.

But the week-end was busy and it was liberating simply getting out to run errands.  I did though have two interesting incidents happen within hours of each other on Saturday:

Incident #1

As I was standing in line waiting to check out of the grocery store, the cashier sneezed a HUGE sneeze into her hands, wiped her nose with her sleeve and kept checking out the guy in front of me.

Now I have a friend, (you know who you are) who would have told the lady to go wash her hands before touching any of her groceries. I am ashamed to admit that I don’t have that kind of chutzpah; I sincerely wish I did. But I also wish that there were wipes (or antibacterial soap and tissues) available to employees who find themselves in those situations so as to put their customer at ease.


Incident #2

Unbelievably, just a few hours later as my husband and I approached the entrance of a local restaurant for lunch, (hey, don’t judge me- I was exhausted from grocery shopping!) a waiter stepped through a side exit into the empty outdoor dining area facing the parking lot and, I kid you not, loudly.. forcefully blew his nose onto the floor. Not to be gross, but what I mean is he plugged one nostril and blew out the other, like runners do.

He then wiped his hand on his pants and went back inside.

I was shocked..SHOCKED!..but not shocked enough to choose a different restaurant. As I told my husband “Do you ever really know that the staff (at any restaurant) isn’t doing much worse than that in the kitchen where you CAN’T see them?”


Yeah, I know- stupid, lame reasoning- and like I said, I have a friend who would have had the hostess call the manager to the front so she could tell him to his face why she was going somewhere else to eat lunch and then demanded a coupon for free dinner for her family of six to help her recover from the trauma of what she witnessed.

All I did was whisper a prayer, “Lord, please don’t let us get snotty pants as our waiter”

My prayer was answered and we had a lovely lunch.

But seriously, what’s the matter with people today?

And what’s the matter with spineless old me?


The burqa-One mermaid’s opinion

So it seems France has taken the bold step of banning muslim women from wearing “burkinis” on the beach. What’s a burkini? Well, truth be told, that’s open to interpretation, but basically it’s anything that head to toe ‘covers you up pretty good.”


Here’s the deal..I had a skin cancer removed a few years ago and when I go to the beach these days, you better believe I’m ‘covered up pretty good.’ Would I be fined sitting on the beach in Saint Tropez? Where is the dividing line between acceptable sun protection and being escorted away by the Gendarmes?


So yeah, I think the whole burkini beach ban thing is dumb. Frankly, I see plenty of other stuff at the beach I should call the fashion police about… but let me also say that I have been at Sea World in Orlando on a blazing hot summer day next to  women sweating profusely under full black burqas.


I loathe the look of those things..and for a woman in menopause?.. I can only imagine that it’s TOTAL NIGHTMARE.😓🔥

 I know, I know, there will be people who claim they love ’em, and to be honest there are days I wish I could just run to the grocery store with a blanket over my own head because my hair looks so awful..but please, don’t even try to tell me that the majority of these muslim women prefer this claustrophobic “uniform” –  I don’t buy it. Not that I’d be any more comfortable wearing one of these..


..but last time I checked, the Pope isn’t ordering all Christian women to dress like nuns. I guess in the end what I care most about is personal freedom and each person’s individual right to choose what they want to wear..even if I would never choose the same for myself.sock







Being needed

My youngest daughter, who is about to celebrate her 20th birthday, is fiercely, proudly independent. I guess that’s to be expected when you grow up in the shadow of three headstrong siblings.

So it comes as no surprise that one of my favorite moments this summer came as we were snorkeling in the warm waters off the coast of Florida.


We were just swimming around, leisurely enjoying the beauty of the reef when I came upon a decently sized ray skimming through the sand with the grace of a slow-motion butterfly.

My daughter enjoys the colorful fish and the turtles, but anything with sharp teeth or a barb- forget it!  As I motioned to her and pointed down at the mysterious, black creature slipping in and out of sight, I felt her zip up right next to me and urgently grab my hand.


And that’s how we floated along for a while…hand in hand.

I’ve thought about that precious moment many times since then and it always brings a smile to my face because I don’t think my daughter has reached out in exactly that way  since she was in grade school…

And let me tell you,  it felt good for this 54 year old mommy to be ‘needed’ again. 💜



Dorm Room Flip!

So here’s an idea for HGTV…I mean seriously,  I’m getting a bit bored with the home make-over shows so how about..


Think of the creativity required to  turn a super tiny space with too much (ridiculously heavy) furniture, scratched floors, stuck windows and concrete walls into a livable space..all with a budget of like $47.25, a box of command strips and a string of mom’s Christmas lights..


Talk about a challenge!!!


I think it would make for a great reality show..a competition.. to see who could turn their dumpy room into the cleanest, cutest, college cubby!

First prize- a $100 Starbucks gift card,

Second prize- maybe 4 pizzas?

Third prize- How about one of those Swiffer Duster boxes delivered straight to their door!!