05.09.21 An open letter to my Mama, sweet Josie Traylor, on Mother’s Day

I wrote this back in 2013, eight Mother’s Days ago. I started to write something this year and looked at older posts for pictures. I came across this and it is all so true and dear to me that I’m publishing it once again. I miss that little lady just as much today as I did when I first wrote this.

Happy Mother’s Day Mama…

It’s been five years (now thirteen years) since I was able to look into your beautiful shining eyes and hold your fragile little hands to say I love you.

It was probably two years before that time when you still knew it was your daughter Rosalyn saying those words to you.  The erosion of your mind and memories taken by that horrible disease known as Alzheimer’s was something we didn’t like to see happen but most importantly we didn’t want it happening to you.

You were one of the strongest women I’ve ever known loving your children and grandchildren unconditionally, caring for us with the last drop of strength and love you had.

So many memories flood my mind, examples of the Christian wife, mother, and friend that you were.

Your life touched so many yet you were no famous person, just little ole Josie Mae Cochran from small-town Mississippi.

Your brothers and sisters all share your same strength and love for family which is probably why I love each of them dearly.

How I miss the many visits to your home where you’d sit in your chair and I in mine where I knew I could share my innermost thoughts, desires, wishes, problems, and plans and you would always understand.

How I Granny Hen Rosieregret the times I pushed to the side your wise words of advice, determined to do things my way.

With age comes much wisdom and it can be used for good or not.  You chose to use yours for good, for the good of God’s work and His children.

I learned so much from you mama.  How to cook, how to clean the house, oh the many years I spent growing up cleaning the bottoms of the furniture so maybe one day I’d be big enough to clean the tops!

You taught me to love okra by allowing me to have one for each year I was old which made me feel it was a special treat!  You taught me about loving and caring for others with your many visits to the sick or just bringing a small gift to someone in need.

I never realized when growing up that we were not wealthy like others, my clothes were always clean and you managed to give me the things I needed.  My friends and I always knew that when we entered our house we were entering a house full of love and caring and that came from you, Mama.

I know beyond the shadow of a doubt that you are in Heaven watching over us.  Not because of the good person that you were or the good things you did for others.  None of that made you a Christian.  Your love for Jesus Christ and you obviously serving him as your Lord and Savior even unto your death are what makes me know securely that you will meet me in Heaven when my time here on Earth is done.

You taught us the importance of family and created family traditions we will always cherish.  Of all the things I am thankful for it’s that you were always there for my children, Chad and Chip, being there when I couldn’t because of work.

You convinced them that they needed to wear undershirts and even as grown men they still do.

You taught them about Jesus’ love and the importance of Him in our lives.  Chip still tells me things that you taught him and remembers so many ways you affected his life.

As you drew your dying breath our oldest son Chad and his wife was there in our family circle of prayer.

You made it possible for me to work and still know my children were taken care of by the best grandmother around.

Your life wasn’t an easy one especially when you were younger but you never gave up and taught us not to.

I owe you my strength, my sense of humor, my smile, my love for my children and grandchildren, my stubbornness, my intelligence, my determination, and my love for God.

I could write volumes about your simple specialness but I’ve shed many tears while writing this so far and know I need to stop.

Mama, I give you all the thanks in my heart for loving me, my husband and my children like only you could.  The values, morals, family traditions, love, support, and how you spent your time are what make you my precious mama and why I know there will never be another one like you.

Please continue to watch over us and give us a swift kick when you see we’re needing it and a supportive hug when that’s needed as well.

I know that your daughter Harriett, your sons-in-law Roy and George, and all your beautiful grandchildren and great-grandchildren join me in wishing you a Happy Mother’s Day. You are now joined in Heaven by my dear husband Roy who loved you so. I hope ya’ll are both aware of how much you are missed.

We love you mama.

04.04.21 Resurrection Sunday! Hallelujah! He is Risen!!! He is Risen Indeed! Originally posted April 2018

To a Christian, Easter Sunday is everything.  It is the day we celebrate the Resurrection of Jesus Christ.

Unlike most other “holidays” it’s one that Christians observe every day of the year. It is the anchoring message in the Christian faith.  All Christians, regardless of their denomination, believe that Christ rose from the dead and lives in Heaven with his and our father, God.   I don’t think that believe is even a strong enough words – WE KNOW IT to be true!

Today is Resurrection Sunday, the day that changed everything for us. This is the day we celebrate as the day our Savior rose from the dead, defeating and swallowing death in victory!

Without Resurrection Sunday, there would be no hope. If Jesus had not risen from the dead, everything we cling to as Christians would have crumbled.

But He didn’t stay dead, He rose again!

My favorite hymn is the original version of Because He Lives. It  explains my feelings about the resurrection perfectly.  Jesus Christ died on the cross, was buried in a tomb, yet he arose from the grave and lives today. The words of the chorus read:

Because He lives, I can face tomorrow,
Because He lives, all fear is gone;
Because I know He holds the future,
And life is worth the living,
Just because He lives!

The verses say as much to my heart as the chorus does. The words to each verse are:

God sent His son, they called Him, Jesus;
He came to love, heal and forgive;
He lived and died to buy my pardon,
An empty grave is there to prove my Savior lives!empty grave

How sweet to hold a newborn baby,
And feel the pride and joy he gives;
But greater still the calm assurance:
This child can face uncertain days because He Lives!

And then one day, I’ll cross the river,
I’ll fight life’s final war with pain;
And then, as death gives way to victory,
I’ll see the lights of glory and I’ll know He lives!

Some of ya’ll who have read my blog for a while have read these words before, and know this to be the song that touches my heart the deepest.  Lots of ya’ll who are Christians know this song well and probably have related its words to something in your life of great meaning. I absolutely want it sung at my funeral because on that day I will have crossed the river and be in the glorious presence of my Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  As I get older, that thought becomes more and more inviting.

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.
Romans 5:8

My dear friend Pat Turner shared the video below on Facebook on Saturday.  After watching it and hearing the beautiful message I thought it should be included here.

Ya’ll have a blessed Easter.  Remember,  HE IS RISEN, HE IS RISEN INDEED!

 

christ is risenNOTE: About the Video:  Claire Ryann Crosby   Happy Good Friday and Easter weekend to all!! We’re so grateful that Christ could overcome death, sin, and afflictions of every kind, so that we can find peace in this life even with the challenges we face!

By Claire and Dave Crosby, video shot by Modo Studios, song written by Nik Day.  Download the track here: https://davecrosby.bandcamp.com/track/peace-in-christ

02.14.21 Wacky Wonderful Valentine’s Day

I originally put this together in 2015 when my love, Roy, was very much in my life. He’s still my love in a different way, just now he’s in Heaven. I hope you enjoy all these cute little Valentine’s Day stories, pictures, and videos! Rosalyn

2016 10906537_1604347783120091_4539154180240295955_n valentines 1 corinthians 13 valentine_divider_09

LOVE IS A GIFT
valentines love is a gift

When you say I love you, know you are making and building an emotional contract that doesn’t have a witness.

When you say I love you, you must know you are willing to share with someone your inner part.

When you say I love you, be willing to change to someone else’s personality.

When you say I love you, know you are willing to live with two hearts.

When you say I love you, know you are willing to share dreams, happiness, sadness, jokes and your future.

Love is a way to graduate in life characterized by happiness, sadness, pain, dreams and tears.

Love is a gift.

Love is you.

Feelings are not love, because feelings are what grow and things that grow have an end.

The heart is not where love resides, because love comes from conscious being where God intervenes.

Love is not a decision you take alone because love is a decision that includes God.

Imagination is not love because it’s something that doesn’t exist.

Build love, build yourself, be love.

valentine_divider_0910-ways-to-lovevalentine_divider_09WATCH THIS ONE OF A KIND LOVE STORY!
We love because He first loved us 1 John 4:19

The scriptures in this beautiful video are somewhat paraphrased, but I can assure you that the overall message is truly God’s Love Letter to His Children – Christians. It’s called The Bible – God’s Holy Word. If you don’t know him as your Father and want to know more about His amazing love and grace I urge you to open your Bible or ask me for one. Your life will be forever changed!

valentine_divider_09VALENTINES hearts by door valentine_divider_09VALENTINES hug poemvalentine_divider_09THE FORK
Click on the photo below to watch the video!

the forkvalentine_divider_09valentines love never fails

valentine_divider_09valentines pigletvalentine_divider_09 VALENTINES withdrawal and depositARE YOU GIVING FIRST OR TAKING? By Ron Carpenter

The Bible teaches us a lot about the relationships in our home,
about how wives are to submit to husbands and husbands are to love your wives,
children obey your parents,
parents don’t exacerbate your children and provoke wrath.
It goes on to instruct us outside the home as well,
when it says employees and employers should honor each other as unto the Lord…
This entire section (Ephesians 5) is giving us insight and admonishing about what mutual submission, with the right perspective and the right heart, looks like.

It touches on all these relationships, but if you break it down, in essence it‘s talking about mutual submission throughout. In other words, God is not asking or calling for any relationships to be one-sided. God wants equity in your relationships, and a relationship starts breaking down when one person is making more withdrawals than deposits.

Here’s what happens when one person in a relationship starts making more withdrawals than deposits: What happens to your ATM machine if you deposit a thousand dollars in the beginning of the month, and you pull twelve hundred out? By the time you get to the two hundred its got to either kick your overdraft in gear (which you pay a price for), or it’s going to be negative two hundred or when you drained the one thousand. Either way, it’s saying, “this account is empty, you’ve taken too much and not put enough in.” A lot of marriages today are shocked when they find themselves coming up against ‘account empty’ as if it’s unfair to not be able to make a one-time deposit and then withdraw, withdraw, withdraw, take, take, take.

What’s happening? Simply put, you’re trying to withdraw way more than you’re willing to first put into the relationship. That’s not how God began His relationship with you. He loved us so much, He gave (His only begotten son). So God started the relationship with you by loading up your account so high, He put something in you that was so big and so valuable, you could never out give His giving. When I have a lot of good days in a row and a string of successes, I can weather the storm of a bad day, a bad decision, a bad experience, because the good, the successes, outweigh the failures and disappointments.

valentine_divider_09THIS WEEK’S THREE FAVORITE PHOTOS!

LOVING COUPLES – THEN AND NOW PHOTOS!

Then and Now 3THEN AND NOW 2 THEN AND NOW 4
valentine_divider_09thGOD’S BEAUTIFUL WORLD!

valentine lakevalentine white treesvalentines back roads livingVALENTINES leavesvalentines pink flowersvalentines rocksvalentine_divider_09VALENTINES 1 JOHN 4 19 KJV

Reach out to someone in need this week!

Let others see Jesus in you this week!

Be His light in the darkness this week!

Have a Blessed Week!

01.04.21 Christmas decorations, Chris Taylor, House decorations, Car repairs, Buddy chasing cars

All of the Christmas decorations and the trees are now put away. I’ve accumulated more decorations this Christmas season than would fit in my big red Christmas container so another one was purchased and it is full! I plan to create more ornaments during the year for next year’s tree.

Chip took the big outdoor tree apart and put each of the three parts in the attic with lots of ornaments still on them.  I would never have thought to do that but it worked great!

With this beginning of the new year I am hopeful that I can move forward with my life. I’m sure grief from the loss of my best friend Roy will continue to hang on but I am slowly changing and God is walking through this with me.

I am having a hard time knowing what day of the week it is lately. I keep thinking every day is Monday. Christmas and New Years haven’t messed me up before this year.  I watch the news and the weather forecast where they show the days of the coming week but I forget it as soon as I see it,  I know when it is Sunday because I go to church (online) but still I’m confused. I have a special clock that tells me what day of the week, etc. that it is but I still think it’s Monday even though the clock clearly says SUNDAY AFTERNOON 1:06 pm  January 3, 2021.

I attended the funeral Saturday of a wonderful young man whom I’ve known all his life. Chris Taylor died at age 26.  He was an active duty soldier in the U. S. Army stationed at Fort Hood in Texas.  He was at home in Hammond on his Christmas leave when he died. The funeral was a beautiful celebration of Chris’ life and the fact that we know he is in Heaven with his Lord. We sang hymns, his dad spoke, his youth minister Derek spoke and our pastor Avery Dixon spoke at the graveside service.

His young wife Taylor and his dad David along with his aunts, cousins, step mom and others will miss Chris in their lives. He was honored with a military funeral including the 21 gun salute.

Chris was in my 3rd and 4th grade Sunday School class many years back in 2005. This is the young boy Chris, that I remember learning the Books of the Bible and participating in what we call Bible Drill.  Katie Arbour, Jennah Russell and Chris Taylor are with me in the photo

Trinity’s Bible Drill Team – April 3, 2005

I felt honored to be able to attend Chris’ funeral today. I will always remember him fondly.

While I was in Hammond Saturday I went to Hobby Lobby and enjoyed spending time there shopping for some home and outside decorations. Roy called Hobby Lobby Trinkets and Trash but he knew how much I love that store! They have Christian music playing and I just love that while I’m shopping!

One of the things I was going to purchase was a large size mason jar filled with seashells, some of them the color blue I have in the living room. When I went to check out it was not on sale so I put it back. I just finished creating my version of that and when it’s completely done I’ll share with ya’ll.

One of the walls in my bedroom has been empty since we moved in almost 3 years ago.  I wanted the first thing I’d see when I woke up to be our family portrait we took two years ago. It all finally came together and my roomate (!) son Chip hung up the canvas print. He also applied on the wall next to that the beginning and end of Psalm 23rd which was Roy’s favorite scripture.  Roy’s flag is now in a case and is on the dresser on that wall.

After church this morning Chip has been outside working on issues my new to me car Nelly has. And she has them no more!  Thanks Chip for doing your best to help me and to make your dad Roy proud!

Roy’s truck should go up for sale sometime later this week.

If anyone has a recommendation for how to stop a dog from chasing cars down the street, please share! Buddy is doing it more and more and I don’t want him to get hurt or have the car’s driver affected, so I need to figure out how to stop him.

I am looking forward to a quiet week with only a dental cleaning appointment on Thursday.  Now that New Years is behind us I am hopeful someone will call me back from the three neuropsychologists that I’ve called about having my brain testing updated.

I hope each of you have a very blessed week, Rosalyn

 

 

 

01.01.21 I cannot find my bowl of oatmeal

I cannot find my bowl of oatmeal which was my breakfast on Thursday. I ate half of it and lost the rest. I checked everywhere two or three times including many places it should not be hiding like the pantry or laundry room. If it got packed in a box of Christmas ornaments well that won’t be pretty.

ALAS, the mystery was solved after I went to bed last night. Keep reading to find out how that happened and you will also see what living in my little dementia world is like.

I had to lead with that though my intention was to share with ya’ll what a wonderful day Wednesday was but the lost oatmeal is a big sign of how today is going!

Thursday was better than a great day. I got a lot accomplished, the windy breeze was wonderful (other than knocking the outside Christmas tree over). The wind blowing cool air through the house was more than great.

I worked on some Christmas decorations that I wanted to improve before putting them all away for the year. I removed all of the twine hangers and replaced them with colored ribbon that I hope will add more color to the tree. I probably spent 5 hours in my “rock room” creating, painting, fixing, and more.

The coffee table (in the picture) had water spots on it from recent rain that blew up under the patio.  Chip said that he heard that using mayonnaise on it would restore it.  This is the beautiful table after 4 coats of mayonnaise.  It is beautiful again! That was part of the really good day!

During the good day I emptied one of my shelving units and plan to sell it as a vegetable/plant seed growing unit since it has plant growing lights under each shelf. It has a timer that worked perfectly with the lights earlier this year for growing Roy’s little seeds into healthy plants ready for planting outside. The unit will be for sale soon. I’m trying to figure out how much we had invested in it so I’ll know how much to ask.

No, the laptop is not included!

Other really good things happened but I can’t remember them at the moment.

Yesterday, however, hasn’t gone well. Not knowing where my oatmeal is now is only the first part.

I needed to get more of my diabetic testing supplies.  For those who don’t have diabetes, testing supplies include lancets (that poke your finger to get blood), test strips (that pull the blood up to be measured by the testing machine. I don’t remember where I got them last but I knew it wasn’t my pharmacy since they told me that when I needed the lancets last time.

I went to the Peoples Health Medicare website and couldn’t figure out who to contact about having a company send them to me every three months like I use to have it before we started living on the road in Dora. I couldn’t find anything specific for that but I called a couple of companies I found on their site. Neither company had someone answering the phone that spoke clear English and didn’t know what I was talking about. I did catch the words “your local pharmacy” once so after getting nowhere I called Thrift Town to get the supplies.

Most people don’t understand that when talking to someone with dementia you need to include verbally things that you would normally think someone would just understand. My conversation with the young man at the pharmacy went array when he kept saying that I could buy the supplies over the counter. Somewhere in the conversation, he must have thought that I understood that a prescription is needed for these supplies. He must have also thought that I understood that since I didn’t have a prescription on file, I’d need to have my doctor send a prescription. Most people may have understood but I couldn’t see why he thought I should get it over the counter.

Having a conversation where I can say things like “animal” instead of specific things like “dog or cat” but having to understand someone or use correct descriptive words just flattens my brain every time.

I’m not sure all of that makes any sense to anyone but all that left me crying from not understanding and from not being understood.   I contacted my doctor via My Chart (which I can handle well most of the time) and asked them to send a prescription. I am sure I won’t hear from them until next year (ha ha!). Such a simple thing as ordering the supplies should never have been that hard.

More not good things happened and lucky me can’t remember them right now. My brain has good and bad days, sometimes just a bad hour or two. I texted Chip yesterday morning to pray for this bad brain day I was having. He always does pray when I ask.

None of this may sound like a big deal but it is to me when I’m trying to accomplish one simple task and it doesn’t go well or it takes forever to figure out.

Buddy was getting out all morning mostly because I’ve been going in and out packing up Christmas decorations. I don’t mean to but I leave the door open and out he goes every time. He’s also started chasing cars down the street. He’s getting more comfortable with the surrounding area here and goes to visit the cows across the street or dips his ears in the pond water.

Since all that Christmas involved is over with I hope to spend some time working on stopping those habits.  He’s so good about coming to me when I clap my hands so that’s good. I cannot clap my hands normally since I have that Dupuytren’s contracture making my hand cup-shaped.  I have learned that I can clap by slapping the top of my hand with the other hand.  Buddy is such a good sweet dog and understands and obeys many commands.

I am losing all of my thoughts that I wanted to share. It all just goes away and my thinking stops.

But I did have a revelation about my bowl of oatmeal while in bed for the evening reading Still Alice by Lisa Genova.  Alice has Early Onset Alzheimers and  is searching for something she lost. I think she doesn’t even know what she’s searching for. This search of hers was way more drastic than mine was but in the second to last paragraph, end of the third line, you will see what made my brain click and think that just maybe that’s where my bowl of oatmeal could be.

I jumped out of my bed and shouted “I think I know where my oatmeal bowl is.” Buddy was running behind me and Chip was coming out of his room and was so shocked by me saying what I was kind of shouting, and being in the hall in the middle of the night.  I opened the linen closet door and there was my bowl of oatmeal sitting up high on a shelf. I think I put it there when I was searching for my diabetic testing supplies earlier and never thought of that place when I was searching through the house.

I fixed a bowl of oatmeal with blueberries from my own bushes for my breakfast this morning, the first day of the year 2021 and at it all sitting in one place. It was delicious. Buddy was standing guard making sure I ate it all this time!

I’m hoping the rest of 2021 goes as well as this morning is going.

I have been writing a blog post for years on the last day of the year recapping our life during each month of the past year. I didn’t do one this year as I don’t want to have to write about September 2020 when Roy passed away.  Our life was happy and good every month of the last years since I started blogging in 2012 and I enjoyed writing the recap that I titled “Reflections of God’s Blessings.” It was not a blessing to have Roy die even though I know that it is part of God’s plan for both Roy and my lives. Because of this deep grief, I just can’t write more about 2020.

I am looking forward now to what the future holds in my life. My God is in control, and I am so thankful for that.

Buddy, Chip, and I wish you all a HAPPY NEW YEAR!

12.26.20 A different kind of Christmas without Roy

Things have been kinda the same yet very different this year without my honey Roy at our family’s Christmas gathering. My Christmas blog post has always been my favorite to write each year. This year many tears flowed while writing this post, and lots of missing Roy has made this a very different kind of Christmas.

Chip, Buddy, and I really looked forward to Christmas Eve when our family gathered to eat, open presents and fellowship together, then attend Christmas Eve Candlelight Worship Service together at our church in Hammond.

I’ve been telling Buddy how he would have really loved his Paw Paw Roy. I probably wouldn’t have gotten Buddy if Roy was still around.

Our Christmas Eve was a very special afternoon and evening. I kept the menu simple: BBQ Beef on a bun, fruit salad, chips and dips, and 3 desserts.

My precious grandchildren, sons, and daughter in law could not have brought me more joy and love. My Grannie heart was so happy.

One of my Christmas gifts to my sons was a photo memory book from Shutterfly with photos of them, their children and Roy throughout the years. One of the photo memory books almost didn’t make it here before Christmas but I found out what an amazing company Shutterfly is and it made it just in time!  They both loved the gift and spent some time looking at all of the photos I picked out. Creating those books brought on a couple of days full of tears and sadness which I couldn’t share with anyone because I didn’t want to ruin the surprise. 

Here’s the front of both books.

Their family also both received an amazing hand made cutting board with Chauvin embossed on it. They were made by my pastor and I absolutely love both of them.

The extremely cold weather kept us inside. Chip had a tall outside heater that we now have at my house on the patio. The only time we all went outside we were huddled around the heater. While outside our family got to see all of the ornaments on my big tree that is on the new patio.

 Some of the ornaments my grandchildren previously made for me, all the ones I made this year involving some of Roy’s small things (Roy’s small calculator he used when he installed carpet back in the day, and ones my friend Cindy gave me are now on the tree. I shared a few of those ornaments in a previous post.  I added some artsy, crafty bling to some of the plain ornaments, decorated some seashells, some computer CDs, and hard drive disks. I plan to make more of these CD disks and hard drive disk decorations this coming year for next year’s Christmas tree.

Two of the grandchildren gave me the ornaments they made for me. My present from Chad’s family was two beautiful glass ornaments. One in the shape of a heart with a picture of their four children on one side and the other with all of our names, Roy, Rosalyn, Chad, Chip, Amy, etc. What an absolutely perfect gift for my grieving heart. 

The backside of those ornaments.

Chip’s gift to me was having Buddy’s teeth cleaned. We both are enjoying the clean breath Buddy now has!

People have been saying this first Christmas would be difficult without Roy. I really didn’t grasp what that would mean or feel like. I know now that the sadness and loneliness I have felt is what that’s all about.  Being without half of our original family, Roy and me, made my heart hurt. However, the joy of having all of our family around me helped on Christmas Eve. This past week a couple of days were just total loneliness that I haven’t really experienced before. I miss my partner in crime so much. This is my new sidekick who I appreciate so much. Chip and I before everyone arrived on Christmas Eve.

The very best part of our family gathering on Christmas Eve was all of us going to church together. My favorite part of that was signing with my middle granddaughter singing Christmas hymns. I sat down and she stood up so we were on the same level.  She is normally very soft-spoken and a bit shy but when she sang praises to our Lord her little voice was clear and beautiful.  After the service, a couple sitting two rows ahead of us commented on her beautiful singing.  Chip took a photo of our family all sitting together last evening at church. I loved that he did this. Here is the photo.  Look at my sweet littlest grandchild holding onto the arm of her older cousin Madisyn. So sweet.

Well, Buddy and I have gone around all day, Christmas Day, with a jingle bell necklace around our necks. And I got to eat more of the desserts we didn’t finish off yesterday. 

All of our Christmas’ going forward will be different since Roy will not be with us in person. I know he is in the children and grandchildren that came from our love for each other. He will always be with us in that way.

I hope that your Christmas was a blessing to you, just as the gift of Baby Jesus was a blessing to those of us who are his children.

Merry Christmas to all of you, Rosalyn

 

 

12.21.20 The miracle we celebrate at Christmas is worthy of celebration every single day we have breath.

The miracle we celebrate at Christmas is worthy of celebration every single day we have breath.

Christmas is here again! It seems to arrive more quickly each passing year.

Do you have a calendar full of plans? A living room full of gifts? A kitchen full of sweets? You are blessed if you do.

But…

What are your plans for the 26th of December? What will you be left with after Christmas has come and gone? Some new toys, a little less money, and a little more body fat?

After the get-togethers and the feasting and the drinking and the laughing and the surprises and the arguments and the hugs — what then?

Will you simply drag your tree out to the curb and pack up all of your Christmas decorations to stash in the basement until the day after Thanksgiving next year?

Enjoy your new gifts for a week or so?

My prayer for you, whoever you are, wherever you are, is that you’d open yourself, more than ever before, to the things of eternity this Christmas. That you’d really consider — perhaps for the first time ever? — what it means that “Christ is born in Bethlehem.”

I wish you’d stop and think about the lyrics you’ve no doubt heard this season:

Hark! the herald angels sing,
“Glory to the new-born King!
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled.”

“God and sinner reconciled”! Nothing could be more wondrous than that.

Sin-stained humans, hopelessly lost, corrupted through and through, reconciled to the God who created the universe, who is the embodiment and source of holiness, perfection, and love — and into whose presence no evil can enter.

Peace between us and the one who created every atom in the universe, and against whom we’ve continuously rebelled. Unthinkable! But available.

And it is only made possible by that “new-born King.”

Jesus.

God the Son.

The one through whom and for whom all things were created (Colossians 1:16).

The Savior who left the perfect harmony of the eternal Trinity to come here and rescue us. To be born lowly and humble in a manger. To live the perfect life you and I could never live. To die a terrible death, in our place, in order to pay the penalty our sins demand. To absorb God’s wrath meant for us, on our behalf. To make possible the dismissal of our case, though we’ve been found guilty. To give us his perfect righteousness so we may not only enter the presence of God, but dwell there — forever.

Jesus did this.

The miracle we celebrate at Christmas is worthy of celebration every single day we have breath.

You do not have to pack Christmas away this year once the day has passed. The point of Christmas is to celebrate the coming of the Savior humanity had ached and groaned for since the dawn of time.

He has come. You can have him.

This Christmas, grab on to Jesus, and hold on to him. Read the Bible; see what He’s done for you. Open yourself to him, and see if he doesn’t grab hold of you and never let go.

There’s never been a better Christmas to give yourself to Jesus.

Author Unknown

 

12.19.20 The Cajun Twelve Days of Christmas, by Tee Jules

On dem first day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
A crawfish in a fig tree.

Tee Jules (Jules d’Hemecourt IV) recites his “Cajun 12 days of Christmas.” Mr d’Hemecourt passed away on 02/12/2008. In his memory I post this for people near and far to hear.  His Cajun accent may be hard for some to understand so the words can be found below the video clip.

one sprig of hollyone sprig of hollyone sprig of hollyone sprig of hollyone sprig of hollyone sprig of hollyone sprig of hollyone sprig of holly

Lyrics to “The Cajun Twelve Days of Christmas”

On dem first day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
A crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem second day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Two voodoo dolls
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem third day of Christmas my true love she gave to me:
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem fourth day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Four pousse cafe’,
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem fifth day of Christmas,
I could not believe in all my days what she come up with:
Five poules d’eau,
Four pousse cafe’,
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem sixth day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Six cypress knees,
Five poules d’eau,
Four pousse cafe’,
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem seventh day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Seven fleur de lis,
Six cypress knees,
Five poules d’eau,
Four pousse cafe’,
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem eighth day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Eight crabs a brewin’,
Seven fleur de lis,
Six cypress knees,
Five poules d’eau,
Four pousse cafe’,
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem ninth day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Nine oysters stewin’,
Eight crabs a brewin’,
Seven fleur de lis,
Six cypress knees,
Five poules d’eau,
Four pousse cafe’,
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem tenth day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Ten pirogue paddles,
Nine oysters stewin’,
Eight crabs a brewin’,
Seven fleur de lis,
Six cypress knees,
Five poules d’eau,
Four pousse cafe’,
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem eleventh day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Eleven duck decoys,
Ten pirogue paddles,
Nine oysters stewin’,
Eight crabs a brewin’,
Seven fleur de lis,
Six cypress knees,
Five poules d’eau,
Four pousse cafe’,
Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.

one sprig of holly
On dem twelveth day of Christmas, my true love she gave to me:
Twelve shotgun shells,
Eleven duck decoys,
Ten pirogue paddles,
Nine oysters stewin’,
Eight crabs a brewin’,
Seven fleur de lis,
Six cypress knees,
Five poules d’eau,
Four pousse cafe’, Three stuffed shrimp,
Two voodoo dolls,
And a crawfish in a fig tree.
one sprig of holly

** Notes: a pirogue (pronounced pee-roh) is a flat-bottomed canoe; fleur de lis is the flower of the french kings and the New Orleans Saints football symbol; cypress knees are the roots of a cypress tree that sticks out of the water; poules d’eau (pronounced pool-doh) is chicken or hen of the water – ie: a coot or duck; pousse café (pronounced poose kaffay) layered drink composed of several layers of differently colored liqueurs; and Cajuns are the French Acadians that live in southern Louisiana.

From our Cajun family to whatever your family is, Merry Christmas!

 

12.18.20 Meet Nelly, my new to me Nissan Maxima

Roy’s Dodge Dakota truck was his vehicle even before we lived in the motorhome. Mine was the Jeep that we gave to Chip. When we started out to live on the road we called our motorhome Dora and his truck was called Boots. Oh, the adventures Boots had with us. He went all over the country with us and then home every Thanksgiving and Christmas. Roy would often be silly and look at the camera screen as we were driving and say “Hey there is a truck following us!”

I wasn’t planning to sell or trade-in Boots until I saw a 2009 Nissan Maxima on Chip’s Facebook page that he was selling at Bill Hood where he works. We talked on the phone that day and discussed me buying it and letting Chip sell Roy’s truck. I began to think about how nice it would be to have a lady car, and not a man truck. So for that and a few more personal reasons, I decided it was time and I said yes!

The day Roy’s truck sells and leaves here will be a sad day for me and for Chip.  It represents yet another thing associated with Roy that’s gone. My choice though and like I said I will have a “lady” car now.

Chip has started unloading the truck bed on Roy’s truck getting it ready to put up for sale. He’s also been organizing and cleaning out the storage building at the bottom of the hill. I appreciate all of the things he helps me with.

Roy’s truck was as basic as it could get. He installed remote start and electronic door locks so it did have a few neat features. The car has so many bells and whistles and this old lady will probably only use 20% of them. Learning all about this car is going to take time. One feature that I love is the heated seat and lumbar support. And the heated steering wheel. I haven’t figured out the hands-free phone thing but I think that will be nice to have.

It has leather bucket seats and can drive overly fast. I kinda love that!

They did an exceptional job at Bill Hood Servicing getting it cleaned up and kinda sparkly!

I drove it from Hammond to our home in Amite yesterday and it drove really nice and smooth. We took Buddy with us and he rode back home with me. He was not staying anywhere I tried to put him. Finally, I just let him sit under my left arm which made me a bit nervous but he didn’t move when he was sitting there.  I need to get him a harness which I didn’t even know was a thing.

Today I took the car to my dentist for a split tooth I have and then went to the grocery. The trunk is large and really nice. I loved putting my groceries in and taking them out of there. Lots easier than opening the truck bed lid which was heavy and difficult for me to lift.

It’s far from new and has some cracks and worn-out spots on the interior but so do I, so we’re perfect for each other! And her name is Nelly!

I have to share about this really neat wooden stove top cover that I bought from my pastor, Bro. Avery Dixon. He makes these himself and sells them. If you are interested in one let me know and I’ll send you his contact info.

I hope everyone is staying well and are enjoying this beautiful CHRISTmas season! Rosalyn