It’s good and Spring now! It took awhile but it’s really here now!
We picked up a couple of blueberry bushes and some more hibiscus (the yellow, some of them above).
Jerry got them planted this week and mulched. He is quite the gardener! Have I mentioned that I’m totally nuts about him? 😍
I don’t know if it’s the mood I’m in this year, or the age I’m getting to, but I LOVE flowers!! Flowers, flowers, flowers!
Spring is a season of transition, of hope, of promise of things to come, signs of life, renewal, newness of life, out with old, in with the new, cleaning up, clearing out.
It can be a lot. But, there’s also, a lot that it can be!
I love the holidays AND winter so much. It’s often hard for me to let go of winter and embrace the change and newness of Spring
But, I’m determined to not be that person stuck in the past. To value, appreciate and enjoy the past while fully rooted in the now, and reaching forward to the promise of the future!
Nature teaches us to embrace the cycle of life. It’s our example from the Lord for our good!
Like the flower above, the full goodness of what’s in store ahead does not yet appear, but we can trust our Good Father for the Ephesians 3:20 — “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,” of life! If it’s not good yet, hold on, trust Him and SEE what He does!
We had a grand ole time on Easter Sunday with all the kids! The Dads hid the eggs and the Moms stuffed the eggs! Then we let loose the hordes and the kids found the eggs!!
“While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” — Genesis 8:22.
I was encouraged by Peach many years ago to put some of my thoughts on Firearms Instruction into a book form. If you know me you would realize how funny the thought of me writing a book on anything actually was. But being a good husband I started to write things down (yes, I actually know how to write, do they still even teach that in school?) and eventually had enough material for a book. This lead to finding out how to actually get the book out there for people to see. Amazon publishing’s program was the answer for me, straightforward and easy to figure out the basics. Funny, now I’m up to 3 books, and even though the masses are not rushing to buy them, I get a bit of satisfaction knowing I did that, and it’s all because I hate to disappoint my beautiful Peach. You get bored, check them out if nothing else they have cool covers.
Natural Shooting, Ramblings of a Country Boy, and Morning’s Glory are all on Amazon, and coming soon the full version of “The Bevan”.
How are y’all doing? We hope life is treating you good!
Tonight we had a little bit of porch sitting! First lightening bugs of the season! I just love all the glitter they make, sparkling here, and sparkling there. So lovely!
Then there were the wonderful Whip-poor-wills! Even a peacock or two!
Fun fact – Other than a one year stint I have never lived away from the sound of peacocks!
Being able to walk outside, take in the flowers, have a sit in the evening, have the occasional bonfire a few times a year, see and hear the wind in the leaves of the trees, watch Ole Glory wave in the wind on a summer evening, or a blustery day…these things matter to me more than I can explain.
Just going outside for a few minutes a few times a day is such a treat. My heart doesn’t understand how people who are surrounded by skyscrapers can get by like that. I know there is a different energy and benefit there. But, I would be lost.
Grateful for where the Good Lord planted us. There’s a verse I like in a favorite Psalm of mine. It comes from Psalm 16, which is just a short but powerful psalm.
“The lines have fallen to me in pleasant places; Yes, I have a good inheritance” — Psalm16:6, NKJV. I often tell the Lord this verse, ‘The boundary lines You have given me are good, Lord, they have fallen in pleasant places! I have a good inheritance! We have a good inheritance! The life You have given us us good! It’s better than we knew how to do on our own! Thank You, Father! For everything!’
That’s all I have tonight! Just grateful for my Batman! Grateful for our porch sitting time! Grateful for lightening bugs and Whip-poor-wills! Grateful for our wonderful sons, and daughters In loves, beautiful and handsome grandchildren, sweet, sweet siblings, and their spouses, nieces and nephews!
Oh! That reminds me! Batman got the honor to help a nephew get his tie just right for his prom date tonight!! So sweet to see!
I got to see him be born!! It was a first for me so it was a big deal!! where does the time go?!
Before you go to bed, I hope you can step outside and look up at the night sky, feel the night air! It’s just good for your soul!
“…I PLEAD WITH YOU TO WALK holy, IN A WAY THAT IS SUITABLE TO YOUR HIGH RANK, given to you in your divine calling. WITH TENDER HUMILITY AND QUIET PATIENCE ALWAYS DEMONSTRATE GENTLENESS AND GENEROUS LOVE TOWARD ONE ANOTHER, especially toward those who may try your patience. BE FAITHFUL TO GUARD THE SWEET HARMONY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT AMONG YOU in the bonds of peace…” — Ephesians 4:1b-3
A wise woman who I miss very much, taught me when I was very young, that when we become elderly, and are at or near the finish line, we can at times, become sort of caricatures of ourselves, depending on the choices we make in our lives.
Sometimes, as the end is in sight, we may not have all the strength of our reasoning in its normal state. Our reasoning, or our governing of ourselves, I should say, may be a bit relaxed or off balance from in our younger days.
Whatever we have fed in our lives may end up holding the larger sway. All the more reason to each day, walk in the Spirit, because when we do, then we do not “fulfill the lusts of the flesh”, Galatians 5:16b, as each decision makes a path in our heart and in our mind. The Word tells us, to not to be “conformed to this world” but instead to be “transformed by the renewing” of our mind(Romans 12:2).
The wise woman I knew, she worked in healthcare, and had seen a lot of this latter stage of life for people, who were not feeling themselves. It was a cautionary tale for sure.
I guess I have had some cause to think about the culmination of the daily little choices we make, and what those choices do to us in the inside of us, the most real part of us. Those things we choose to think about, and either appreciate or fester over. I don’t want to be one who festers. I want to be one who appreciates. The sunshine, my husband, our good health, our children and grandchildren, our siblings, that we have had good parents, greatest of all our salvation and relationship with Jesus!
I don’t want to waste time on the real (hurts) or imagined (worries). I want to process them, somewhat like laundry, learn from them, forgive myself or others, give it to Jesus, move on. —“Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, [once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.” — 1 Peter 5:7
I know some hurts are monumental, and it’s easy to say. “But, you don’t know how badly they have hurt me” and to that, I say you are right. But, I also know you deserve to live and love, and enjoy what is here right now. Don’t let them rob you, not one more day. Not one more minute.
“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this ONE THING I do, FORGETTING THOSE THINGS WHICH ARE BEHIND, and REACHING FORTH unto THOSE THINGS WHICH ARE BEFORE, I PRESS TOWARD THE MARK for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” — Philippians 3:13-14
Love either near (those in your now circle) or from afar (those in your past), pray for them all, every day, but that doesn’t mean they get to sit in prime real estate in your head carving their initials. Evict them from your heart, as well as the well rehearsed pain.
“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are TRUE, whatsoever things are HONEST, whatsoever things are JUST, whatsoever things are PURE, whatsoever things are LOVELY, whatsoever things are of GOOD REPORT; if there be any VIRTUE, and if there be ANY PRAISE, THINK ON THESE THINGS.” — Philippians 4:8
Remember, our Father God sees our end from our beginning (Isaiah 46:10) He has good for us, if we will accompany Him to the future He has yet ahead for us!
“This is what the Lord says: “You will be in Babylon for seventy years. BUT THEN I WILL COME TO YOU AND DO FOR YOU ALL THE GOOD THINGS I HAVE PROMISED, and I will bring you home again. For I KNOW THE PLANS I HAVE FOR YOU,” says the Lord. “They are PLANS FOR GOOD AND NOT FOR DISASTER, TO GIVE YOU A FUTURE AND A HOPE. In those days when you pray, I will listen. IF YOU LOOK FOR ME WHOLEHEARTEDLY, YOU WILL FIND ME. I WILL BE FOUND BY YOU,” says the Lord. “I WILL end your captivity and RESTORE YOUR FORTUNES.” — Jeremiah 29:10-14
What inspired this? The passing of time, the loss of relationships, the finality of the passing of a good and precious life and the vacuum that has made. The choices we who remain make now, to hopefully live leaving a trail of love, hope, joy, affirmation, faith, and much grace, for our loved ones to follow. May our trail be clear, filled with good things to help them along their way!! — “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” — 1 Corinthians 11:1
Thank you for stopping in!! It means so much to share these thoughts in hopes it might encourage you along your way!!
I leave you with the closing of a favorite poem of mine, by Robert Frost, who I so enjoy!
Good Morning, E’rybody!! It’s chilly, and sunny, and God is still, ever and ALWAYS on His throne! Jesus has made a way for us to be ADOPTED into His family!! We are NEVER ALONE!
He gives us some family and friends to do life with and be a HELP and ENCOURAGEMENT to each other! To speak LIFE and TRUTH to each other, in LOVE! Not in manipulation, fear, bitterness or envy, but in LOVE!!
He gives us His Holy Spirit to make us ABLE to walk this life out, and just to be clear, this life is FAITH. ‘For the just shall live by FAITH’.
Just some brief thoughts this morning after hearing this GEM of a song which I JUST discovered! I hope it blesses, refreshes, and inspires you like it does me! It’s not new, just new to me!
I’m working on a deeper post, it’s just taking me awhile, and wanted to jump on and say ‘Hello’!
I hope you have caught Batman’s new series (2 chapters) of his new project called ‘The Bevan’. I am loving it and can’t wait to read MORE!
So much happened during the past year, the Lord was so good to bring us through so much, bestowed so much sweetness and goodness on us in the past year, it’s hard to know how to get back started again in writing. But, write we must. So like any big, monumental mountain of laundry facing you, you just get in there and start sorting through and making piles.
The best I could figure as I sorted through photos from the past seven months, by way of remembering the overall big things, I felt it might be best to start with a giant thanksgiving post, to the GOODNESS, astounding goodness, of our Father God.
We saw Batman through his final year in law enforcement! He finished many little things, details, he wanted to accomplish before retiring. He’s whole, healthy and so ALIVE, something you have to celebrate every day in law enforcement!
He was blessed to be a part of so very many great adventures in his career. Things that in my mind were too numerous and too good to not have been ‘steps of a good man’ ‘ordered by the Lord’
He is now permanently assigned to retirement life with me! AND our kids and grandkids, and there will be lots of very different adventures to come! Albeit, gardening, fort building, putt putt golfing, fishing, real golfing, traveling, coffee on the deck in the morning, more picture taking, more writing, and generally enjoying and growing and learning! Still side gigging, but at a sedate pace! So grateful! The possibilities are endless and every day, we literally can’t believe how awesome it is!
And the flowers!!! Well, we will talk more about them in a future post I am sure!! He’s the bomb, y’all!
We welcomed sweet, sweet grandsons (Kylan, in August) and (Henry, in November), and we just cannot get enough of them!! Overwhelming love and joy and great expectation and hope, a sure hope, for the future! Brand new, little humans to love and enjoy and teach and just relish life and the wonder of God with and watch them take on the world and make their way!!
Our oldest son battled the dreadful virus and whooped it, by the GRACE of God and his whole family whooped it, including his pregnant wife! Somehow, the Lord helped them navigate the purchase of their first home in that crazy month. Jehovah Rapha, the God who heals. The joy! The gratefulness. The wonder.
Our youngest son came to work with me in my dear brother in law’s company, during the fall!! I can’t even EXPLAIN the astounding joy and wonder at getting to share this with him and watch him in his element!! Being so gracious to customer after customer, going out of his way, as a matter of refined, routine, over and over, and finding a way to connect with and secure a client, oh so many times, while encouraging coworkers. It’s like a giant Christmas gift! Every day!
The holidays brought all the joy we could imagine and more! But. The season was not without pain. But, I’m not ready to talk about it. We will save that for another day. I will say, however, that even in pain the Lord provides, there is love and shelter, and grace and provision, if we will let Him in, let Him guide and provide. He is so faithful.
I would love to post more pics, but, I want to respect my sons’ privacy and I’m not sure how much is ok to post! I’m just so proud of them!
You and me, Batman!! Forever! So far to go! So much LOVE to live!!!
Hi, y’all! Been a minute since I wrote anything at all, and I figure I better say something before I forget how to do this. Peach is forever wanting to gather with family and have a bonfire and cook a big meal for everyone. Me, I’m a hermit. As much as I love Peach’s cooking, and as much as I love family and friends, I’m a hermit. Peach in her patient ways, always drags the cave man out into the light from time to time and when she does and I stop grumblin’, I always end up having a really fun time.
Someone once said, “to truly be happy, a person must make others happy“ (if no one said it I’ll claim it) although I don’t believe that’s the case, I will say making others genuinely smile, does make me happy. I have been blessed with the most beautiful and perfect partner to stumble through life with, and in doing so have been blessed with awesome children, and grandchildren. But more than that, Peach’s family add an awesome blessing into the mix. Always up for a bonfire, or a day at the range, never without smiles and good cheer, they are like my own kin. We have been able to spend a bit more time with some of them now that I’m fully retired, before, being a Police Officer I missed gatherings and opportunities to spend time, now I am able to and we do.
Raised by two great parents my two of my nieces (you know who you are) are growing too fast into wonderful young ladies, one with two incredible talents (that I know of) one is as an artist at which she is very good at, and the other writing, a talent rivaling many a starving book writers, she will, if she keeps at it, publish a best seller before she’s 20. The other, quieter and more a thinker (just based on my observations) I have been told is an excellent cook, creating dishes that are both pleasing to the palette but also creations that are wondrous to look at, this talent does not surprise me as I know she is also a skillful artist (although I have to pry to get a look at her work, I can be annoying at times yes it’s true) her art belies her age, and like her sister with writing, if she keeps at it will make her mark in Culinary Arts or any other field she chooses (not to forget they are both really good shots and seem to enjoy range time). The reason I mention these young ladies is because the more we visit the more I see their talent and come to appreciate how they mirror their parents in the fact that they love family and I pray they keep at it and shine. At our outings or bonfires I like to think everyone has a good time and can’t wait to do it again, I know I can’t.
Gatherings with family like this are something I hope all get a chance to do (if we’re having one you’re welcome to join the family) as I know the conversation that happens while sitting around the fire with the dark crowding in all around, and the trees seemingly stretching their limbs towards the fire to warm, is conversation that’s good for the soul. Thought provoking and sometimes funny, the conversation is for all ages, as we believe that everyone has something to share. Being retired, I am catching up for the first couple months, on things I need to get a handle on. After that, Peach and I are going to take our famous driving trips and see what we find. There are plans to stay in cabins (I’m all in long as there’s a creek or pond I can sit by and fish in), in parts of the country where it’s more “country”, near places where we can take hikes or walks and /or bike rides. The plans include times with family doing the same things and having the same style conversations around fires at night, until we are no longer able.
As I age, I reflect as I’m sure everyone does, on missed opportunities to tell people what they mean to you, and how you cherish their friendship and company. I tend to turn friends into family and to me there are no more important people than family. I want my children to succeed in all walks of life and they are well on the right path to do so. I want for Peach’s family the same, as to me they are my family also and there is nothing on the earth I would not do to see them succeed or come to their aid.
I think the point of this inane babble (anyone get the reference?) is to explain that despite all my life liking to be a hermit, there is nothing on the planet that would keep me from helping family, and now days, “gathering” to just be together.
Yesterday as Batman and I walked out the front door for a quick trip to town to get salt for the water softener, the warm summer breeze just mentally swept me away!
I said to Batman with a happy smile ‘A hot summer day.’ Usually that would mean mosquitoes, sweat and hair attacked with the frizzies from humidity. But, yesterday it meant everything but!
It meant warm breezes that soothe your soul, and keep the bugs away and a dry heat, not humid. It meant blue skies that don’t quit! Green oak, bay and pine trees! Tweety birds here and tweety birds there! Freshly cut grass! (Thank you, Batman!)
As I got in Batman’s truck, I was remembering past summers. Summer after summer. When we were younger, and the kids were small, and when we were kids ourselves. Summer was a time of low key, anything could happen, there might be an adventure around the corner, let’s climb this tree, let’s make a dribbled sand castle at the beach, homemade ice cream, hamburgers on the grill, lemonade, standing on the big wooden (cable?) spool like it’s a stage, singing Tanya Tucker’s ‘Delta Dawn’.
Praying your parents don’t make you come in for a bath just yet! Being told you look like a tornado ‘hit ya’ (that was code for girl, your are a dirty mess!) which I looked down at myself and assessed they were correct! I was quite pleased with myself!
Sometime ago I realized that to this day when I smell fresh cut grass, I cheer up immediately. Not only because it just smells good, but it immediately takes you back to those wonderful, ‘anything is possible’, summer days! More recently I realized part of that joy, was the fact that getting the grass cut was a success. Dad never had a new lawn mower, so it meant often a lawn mowing task entailed a bit of fighting with the mower to either get it started or keep it running. Once it was cut, we all immediately loved the way it looked and smelled and sort of celebrated another round of a long term battle with the mower, chalking up another win! It felt…prosperous! Not everybody won their battle back then, more so today because we all are more prosperous, whether we realize it or not!
Oh the thrill of school being completed for another year, and being ‘out’ for the summer, (thanks Alice Cooper), of knowing our kids would have water play, run around and have wars and play hide and seek combat style in the neighborhood, and be able to sleep in and have more time with us in the evening, sleep overs, forts, dirt bikes, endless good hearted mischief. It was a good feeling, even if we had to leave them and go to work!
Our two sons have been raised a long, long time and now each have their own families. I still, to this day am happy when school is out for the summer! Just the thought of the good times available to millions of kids everywhere, gives me a lighthearted feeling!
My sweet brother thinks this feeling might be because no school traffic on our respective ways to work. Hmmm…that might be it, too! 😆😆
It’s funny, I was telling Batman that while summer days take me back, fall and winter days I think I’m firmly in the wonder of the NOW! That is a story for another day!
“And God said, Let the earth bring forth grass, the herb yielding seed, and the fruit tree yielding fruit after his kind, whose seed is in itself, upon the earth: and it was so.
And the earth brought forth grass, and herb yielding seed after his kind, and the tree yielding fruit, whose seed was in itself, after his kind: and God saw that it was good.” — Genesis 1:11-12
First apologies, profusely, for being so late! Life is so very full right now! Jerry put out a fantastic group of sunrise photos! ‘Morning’s Glory’! We are both so glad to get some of the glorious beauty of the Lord into people’s hands, in order for people to appreciate the hand of God at work for us.
“The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.” — Psalm 19:1
So, how are y’all doing so far this year? We are running our race this year strong and steady, counting the literal work days and until Batman retires! And counting the months and weeks until each two grand babies are born!
Not gonna lie, having a hard time processing all the emotion of joy of this year and the work to make time for writing or making podcasts. But, my heart is so here every day, looking for opportunities. I am sure we all struggle with that juggling thing though.
What are you listening to lately? This year has brought some wonderful praise and worship music and just uplifting music in general. My sound track this year has included Dante Bowe and his album Circles. All. Of. It. What I loved about this album is he is a devout Christian artist writing and singing with so many in the current Praise and Worship circles, like a bee from one group to the next, cross pollinating from one part of the Body of Christ to the next, which I think is one aspect of the epitome of healthy Christian living. The kicker though for this project, in my mind, is it is a Christian singing his faith as it looks in his every day life, like we ought to live every day, not as a praise and worship project but just reflections on life, naturally reflecting his faith. Totally relatable to anyone, whether they care for Christian music or not. Every song has a reason to choose it. I think ‘Joyful’ and ‘Family Tree’ are great choice to give a listen.
The Maverick City, Elevation Worship project called ‘Old Church Basement’ is a whole experience!! There is no skip song at all, on this or any of the great albums I’m digging this year! Some faves? ‘Wait on You’, ‘Shall Not Want’, ‘Million Little Miracles’, ‘Come Again’, and ‘Build Your Church’. It just transports you.
And can I just say I am superrrrr late to the Crowder party???? The Crowder ‘Milk and Honey’ album is a whole entire planet of wonderful!! A Southern Rock girl to my core, this music feeds my soul because it magnifies Jesus AND gives me that bit of the South sound that makes my heart happy. Again, no skip songs! Listen to it all…twice or thrice!
Also, I forgive y’all for not telling me about ‘We The Kingdom’. Did I mention I’m a Southern Rock girl? Yes! These people are making music that just isn’t out there, Jesus and the Kingdom and sung in Southern! ♥️♥️♥️ My heart sings and my windows rattle as I’m driving down the road! ‘Don’t Tread on Me’! Kicks the devil in his teeth and EXALTS our Jesus!! All the while making my Southern roots tingle! ‘Take Me on a Ride’ is such a great picture of the adventure our faith walk is supposed to be. What a great witness and joyful song!
An extraordinary experience I had one Friday before work, back in early May, was impulsively purchasing an old album by Pastor Clint Brown, from about 12-15 years ago.
Background: The church I spent 20 years in, and raised our boys in, sang so much of his music! He visited a good number of times and preached with fire and he’s just a work horse for the Kingdom of God. Good man. Super anointed. Well, I had been missing Praise and Worship from my old days at Family Worship Center. Which inspired me to get ‘Fall Like Rain’ that fateful Morning.
WOW! It lifted my spirits so much. I had not realized how VERY MANY songs we did of his until that day! It blessed me beyond anything I could have imagined, because I knew literally every song, and it was such a wonderful, joyful experience to get to sing these songs at the top of my lungs, while also remembering Sunday after Sunday and Thursday after Thursday doing the same, and it took me back, in the best way, to service after service of knowing that the Holy Spirit had just done surgery in my heart before the preaching even had begun! Again, no skip songs, some of my faves being ‘Awesome God’, ‘I Can’t Get Enough’, ‘I Will’, ‘I’m Forgiven’, and ‘Fall Like Rain’. He’s from Louisiana. And it shows!! Fan-flippin-tastic!! Music is such an incredible gift of God.
What brought me here tonight though, was Batman discovered a YouTube channel by the sweetest, most fun young couple, it’s called ‘Rob Squad Reactions’ . Not only are their music choices SUPERB! But, their heart shows through every upbeat amazed reaction, as they discover old music that Batman and I just love because it’s music from the soundtrack of our lives as younguns. They are all about the joy of musical craftsmanship and it’s a lot of fun to watch them discover and/or just enjoy it with us. Like us, they see music as a unifying element that people across all groups can appreciate and take pleasure in. We all need more of this!
Tonight as we sat listening to Stevie Nicks signing ‘Landslide’, I actually was overwhelmed with gratitude and emotion that made my eyes tear, which is not a reaction I have to music hardly ever. So many thoughts about appreciation for Batman, and our life together. It was like a wave washed over me. Or maybe bubbled out of me is better expressed.
I met him 5 March 1982 with friends on the way to an Alabama concert in a neighboring city. Our journey amazes me. It’s not that we have a flashy story. Nope. We are not flashy people. But, we were kids. Born to people who were extremely working class. Salt of the earth people. Our parents were born to people born and raised during the Great Depression. They had some wisdom to live by. And we had things to learn beyond that. Like every generation does. Just very grateful how the Lord has helped us to learn and grow and GROW TOGETHER. What a gift.
I think listening to these old songs and the memories and joy and the tears and the MILES the Good Lord has brought us through just has really moved me tonight! So, I wanted to jump on here and talk about what the gift of music is doing in my life this summer!