This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the Lord’s mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every moring: great is thy faithfulness. The Lord is my portion saith my soul: therefore will I hope in him. The Lord is good unto them that wait for Him, to the soul that seeketh him. It is good that a man should both hope and quietly wait for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3: 21-26

Saturday, October 27, 2007

Other Bloggers Giving Away Books!

Edited to add: I WON!! I actually won the Amy Grant Mosaic book from Karen, Mommy of Three. I am soooo looking forward to reading this!

There are more books to be won out there in blog-land! I really want to win them--but if you win I will be happy for you too!!

In no particular order:

Jennifer at Snapshot is giving away Amy Grant's Mosaic.

Becky at In the Pages is giving away Cave of the Dark Wind.

Karen at Mommy of Three is giving away Amy Grant's Mosaic and Sammy's Hill.

Blue Mama at Life In the Fish Bowl is giving away The Road which she won here! Wow is she a fast reader or what?!

I'll update as I find more. If you have a book giveaway & would like a link here, leave me a comment and I will add you!

Friday, October 26, 2007

Scripture and Song

Isaiah 65:17-25

17 "Behold, I will create
new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
nor will they come to mind.

18 But be glad and rejoice forever
in what I will create,
for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight
and its people a joy.

19 I will rejoice over Jerusalem
and take delight in my people;
the sound of weeping and of crying
will be heard in it no more.

20 "Never again will there be in it
an infant who lives but a few days,
or an old man who does not live out his years;
he who dies at a hundred
will be thought a mere youth;
he who fails to reach a hundred
will be considered accursed.

21 They will build houses and dwell in them;
they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit.

22 No longer will they build houses and others live in them,
or plant and others eat.
For as the days of a tree,
so will be the days of my people;
my chosen ones will long enjoy
the works of their hands.

23 They will not toil in vain
or bear children doomed to misfortune;
for they will be a people blessed by the LORD,
they and their descendants with them.

24 Before they call I will answer;
while they are still speaking I will hear.

25 The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
but dust will be the serpent's food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,"
says the LORD.


WHAT A DAY THAT WILL BE

There is coming a day
When no heartache shall come
No more clouds in the sky
No more tears to dim the eye
All is peace forever more
On that happy golden shore
What a day, glorious day that will be

Chorus:
What a day that will be
When my Jesus I shall see
And I look upon His face
The One who saved my by His grace
When He takes me by the hand
And leads me through the Promised Land
What a day, glorious day that will be

There'll be no sorrow there
No more burdens to bear
No more sickness, no pain
No more parting over there
And forever I will be
With the One who died for me
What a day, glorious day that will be.

Chorus

View a YouTube video of the Gaithers singing this song.

Visit Sheryl at Taking the Challenge for more Faith Lift Friday thoughts.

Hollywood Nobody

I received a copy of Hollywood Nobody from Glass Road Public Relations and am looking forward to reading it. It falls into the Young Adult reading category, and while my boys aren't quite "there" yet, I have a family member who is "there" and is an avid reader. I'm always looking for good reading for her--I think this is going to be something she likes. I'll let you know when I'm done!

The hypocrisy of Hollywood never seems to affect the contradictory allure of Hollywood. Millions of Americans are addicted to the Hollywood gossip columns, blogs and tabloids that feed us a steady diet of rumors and half-truths. Noted young adult fiction author Lisa Samson tackles the shallow fluff of Hollywood and digs deeper to find out what’s true and what’s not amidst the glamour and glitz in Hollywood Nobody.

About the Story

Fifteen-year-old Scotty Fitzgerald has spent her young life on the road, traveling to movie sets with her single mom, Charley, a food designer. It’s hard enough to live on the road with Charley, the hippie mother who’s more of a kid than you are and seems to constantly be on the run. But Scotty, lonely and longing for her father, gathers together a different sort of family made up of crazy directors, and geriatric RVers.

On the set of a Great Gatsby remake in North Carolina’s Toledo Island, Scotty befriends rising star Seth Haas (aka “Seth Hottie") and failed fashion designer Joy Overstreet. She tries to avoid prima donna Karissa Bonano, who seems to represent all the hypocrisies Scotty rants about in her anonymous “Hollywood Nobody” blog. She begins to kick against Charley’s protective restraints and weigh what it might cost her to create the life she wants for herself and to gain the answers to her most important questions. But the answers turn out to be darker than she could have imagined ad threaten to sink her trust in the people dearest to her.

Who is Scottie’s father? Why is her mom so secretive? And who is this mysterious man that keeps following them? How can life possibly be so lonely in the company of so many people?


Lisa Samson is the author of twenty books, including the Christy Award–winning Songbird. She speaks at various writers’ conferences throughout the year. Lisa and her husband, Will, reside in Kentucky with their three children.

Learn more about Lisa at lisasamson.typepad.com/.

Q&A with Lisa Samson, author of Hollywood Nobody

Q. What inspired you to write Hollywood Nobody?
A. NavPress approached me at a publishing conference about writing YA fiction. They felt my writing voice would transition naturally into YA. Well, that day, I was sitting in my car in Opryland's parking lot, and the idea just gushed out. Nav loved it, and here we all are, me, Nav, Scotty Dawn and her fabulous readers.

Q. What message would you like readers to take away after reading Hollywood Nobody?
A. Be yourself and don't think the grass is always greener "over there." Chances are, somebody's looking at your yard thinking you've got it made.

Q. What does faith mean to you?
A. Faith means trusting God even when you have no idea what's going on around you, or what lies ahead. Faith means that somehow, somewhere, the bad stuff will be turned into good, even if that seems impossible.

Q. Can you describe what a "normal" family means to you? Did you grow up in a "normal" family?
A. Honestly, I don't think there is such thing as a "normal" family. We're all odd in our own way. Sure, some families look normal from the outside, but we're all weird in our "own special way." Of course, some families' abnormalities are dark and painful, and I just hope and pray that Hollywood Nobody will provide young women in those situations with a little bit of escape and encouragement.

Q. How did that help you?
A.I was always encouraged in the arts. My Dad played boogie-woogie for pocket money in college, and painted when he came home from his practice at night. My Mom worked at our church, was involved in other causes, so I became aware of my social responsibilities through her.

Q. In Hollywood Nobody, Scottie really struggles to find authentic relationships due to her nomadic lifestyle and the pervasive Hollywood influence in her life. What do you think Scotty would say to Britney Spears or Lindsey Lohan if she had the chance?
A. She'd say, "Are you kidding me?!" :-)

Q. What book is coming up next? Will Scottie find out who is chasing her?
A. The next book is called Finding Hollywood Nobody and yes, she will figure out who Biker Guy really is!

Q. What book(s) are you reading now?
A. Right now I'm reading, Growing Up Hard in Harlan County and Jesus of Nazareth.

Q. If your book were turned into a movie, who would play the main character(s)?
A. Amanda Bynes with a dark, curly wig. Adam Brody would nail Seth Haas. Charley could totally be played by Kelly Preston.

Q. Which one of your characters is most like you? Why?
A. Well, Scotty thinks a lot like I do. But I don't think any of the characters in this book resemble me. I am 43 dontchaknow. :-) Scotty, however, is an awful lot like my 17-year-old daughter Ty. I really felt like she was whispering in my ear as I wrote the book.

Q. What do you want your readers to know about you?
A. I guess I hope they know I remember how awful being a teenager could be! I'm not the person who says, "This is the greatest time of your life. Just be happy." I wouldn't go back to High School if anybody paid me to do it. It's a hard gig.

Q. There are many references woven throughout Hollywood Nobody to F. Scott Fitzgerald's The Great Gatsby. Is this a favorite book for you? Why did you choose it as a backdrop for Scotty?
A. Yes, The Great Gatsby is a favorite of mine. I chose it because I was re-reading it when I started writing the book. There are a lot of parallels between the two storylines. Unrequited love, the outsider looking in, wanting what we can't have. Beyond that, I wanted Scotty to be the literary type and to encourage the readers of Hollywood Nobody to venture out into something more classic than my book!

Q. Are you a vegetarian like Scotty or her mother?
A. I've tried it a time or two. And I wish I could stick with it. But usually it's fried chicken that knocks me off course every time. (I love fried chicken!)

Q. Scottie struggles with defining faith and how it fits into her life. Can you describe your experience coming to faith?
A. I've been in church all of my life! When I was three I remember asking Him into my heart. But faith isn't just a nice little formula, it's embracing Christ and God's faithfulness, day after day after day. Honestly, each day I hope I come to Christ a little more, hoping to draw closer to Him, to be more like Him, to love Him more.

The Vase of Many Colors

I just received The Vase of Many Colors from Glass Road Public Relations and will be posting my personal review on Monday.

In the very small house, on the very grand hill, in the very small town author Rachel Thoene – daughter of veteran bestsellers Bodie and Brock Thoene - masterfully explores the captivating notions of forgiveness and grace in The Vase of Many Colors. This beautifully written and colorfully illustrated family tale peeks into the world of the very bouncy girl and her old, crooked grandmother. A world where rainbows appear on the walls and simple flower-gathering is a nightly ritual.

And where broken things are mended with the gentle breath of love to become a masterpiece for all generations to enjoy.

In a world where broken things are tossed aside with ease, Rachel Thoene’s story is a captivating reminder of the power of forgiveness and grace to mend life’s cracks and create a Vase of Many Colors in you.

About Rachel Thoene

Rachel knows what it’s like to pick up broken pieces. As a site administrator at two alternative schools for at-risk students in an urban school district in Sacramento, California, she helps students put the pieces of their broken lives back together and discover success where there was only self doubt. As a mother, she finds new beauty in the hearts of her two children, Ian and Jessie. “Every person we come into contact with has the potential to be a beautiful and valuable work of art,” Rachel says. The inspiration for the story began as an email to a friend who was struggling with how to relate to her teenage son. When the story further developed, Rachel realized that the underlying message appealed to the experiences of adults and children alike.

Q & A with Author Rachel Thoene

Q. One of the major themes of Vase of Many Colors is restoration. Can you tell us a little bit about what restoration means to you and how restoration is different than just forgiveness.
A. Restoration suggests that things are being repaired and made new again. When I was growing up, one of my favorite things to do with my mom and my Nana (Mom’s Mom) was to go visit antique stores. While they frequently searched for the exquisite and the rare and the beautiful, I always felt that some of our greatest treasures were the old chairs … the ones with the woven cane seats. They were old, dusty, tired and broken down, but when we would come across chairs like that, if they suited our needs, Mom would get them to an antique restorer who would tirelessly restore or repair the caning in the seat of these old chairs… it always amazed me how the new canes could make that old tired chair new enough and strong enough to hold our weight.. even though the rest of the structure was 100 – 150 years old… but the structural integrity of that chair was restored to a point where it could support a grown man’s weight. Same goes for stained glass windows… bits and pieces of colored glass would be cut to size to repair some of the stained glass windows we bought from those same antique dealers… it became an act of everything old becomes new again… plain old forgiveness can be too easy… simply brushing off a wrong, without really acknowledging that it caused broken-ness. But restoration is work…an art and takes delicate craftsmanship… if you restore someone or something, you are investing time and energy into righting the wrong.

Q. Sometimes forgiving yourself can be the hardest part of all. How can you learn to forgive yourself when everyone else has already?
A. Humans have a tendency to continue the mental flogging don’t they? I have a terribly guilty conscience… and will lay awake at night mulling over and re-hashing scenarios until I have horrible headaches and my stomach and shoulders are in knots. And why? What does that accomplish? Sometimes I have to go back to folks I’ve wronged a couple of times and explain, “Hey, I’m still feeling this way about what I said or what I did… and I just want you to know that I’m having trouble forgiving myself.” My current boss and I have that kind of relationship and we just talk until we’re all talked out. He calls it “un-stuffing” and it has really helped me come to forgiveness of myself a lot quicker. Maybe the idea is to be thorough in your discussion of forgiveness and not so quick to dismiss the wrong. Folks don’t enjoy reliving painful experiences, but sometimes you have to cut away the infection to get to healthy tissue again. Then you’re truly clean and ready to start fresh.

Q. Your parents are legends in Christian fiction. How has your upbringing affected your writing style?
A.WHOA! Yup. They sure are legends alright! And the funny thing is that I never saw myself as a writer… I expressed myself privately in poems and prose and could write really long letters and emails to friends… and when it came to technical writing and research I could really shine. But I sure never saw myself as a writer of their caliber. And certainly not of that level of self discipline. I grew up appreciating the art form and yet never wanting anything to do with it. It was TOO MUCH WORK! So I’m not sure I even have a style per se… I enjoy words… LOVE a good dictionary and my goal is to someday own an O.E.D. but when I write these days, it is to communicate a point or illustrate a message without putting people on the defensive. That’s a huge part of my job as a school administrator… communicate effectively without causing emotional trauma.

Q.What was your inspiration for Vase of Many Colors?
A.Whew boy. My inspiration was my friend, Val and her relationship and the trials she was having as a mother with one of her sons at the time. But the story really became one of those divinely inspired sorts of messages… it just sort of fell out of me in an email to her… a sort of allegory or parable if you will, about how as mothers, even when our kids make dumb mistakes and bad choices, we can still pick up the pieces and help them put themselves back together again. Of course as I sat back and spent some time with the story, quite a few different messages sort of jumped out at me. And that continues to happen as I review it in relation to different audiences and different life scenarios.

Q.Who is the target audience for Vase of Many Colors? Adults or Children?
A. Oh! Why limit it to just those two groups? I think the target audience is whomever has relationships with other human beings… some of my teachers have used it in their classes with their high school aged students and also with their own grandchildren. I have shared the story with school children and adults in difficult situations. It doesn’t really matter who you are or how old, if you deal with other human beings, you need to read this story. My boss has used it with staff members. I have shared it with some of my students who are teen age mothers and grandmothers who are raising their grandchildren…. The target audience is humans.

Q. How can adults and children both benefit from reading Vase of Many Colors?
A. I think the story speaks to the fact that ALL of us have made, currently make and will continue to make mistakes. We will experience heartaches but WOW! The good news is that we can be forgiven, we can be healed, and we can be whole again. And it even applies to really deep hurts, like death of a loved one or a serious illness, loss of a job or other traumatic spiritual and emotional experiences… we’ll be all busted up to pieces but you know what? God can put us back together again. And when He does, we find ourselves staring into the old dark, musty closets of our past and wondering how in all heaven and earth He is going to take all that garbage and make anything good of it…. But He always does. And we never look the same but we’re new and improved… we might have a couple of emotional limps or scars left over but you ask any cancer patient who has beaten the disease and they will tell you that the scars serve as reminders of the battle and their courage to win and also as their reminder of their humanity. Those reminders cause us to be compassionate toward others who are experiencing the same or similar issues.

Q.What book has most influenced you personally?
A. Oh boy. Am I being graded on this? Next question… do I have to have only one? I don’t think I can narrow it but if I had to I would say that the most currently influential book I have read is called “The Penny: A Novel” by Joyce Meyer and Deborah Bedford. Do you want me to do a full book report? It’s just one of those books that soothes your heart and your brain… like Chapstick after a really bad cold.

Q. What book are you reading now?
A. I’m reading about six books right now but the most powerful book I’m reading right now is called “Good to Great” by Jim Collins. It’s a business leadership type book but has direct application in what I’m doing right now as a school site leader.

Q. What do you want readers to know most about you?
A. Hmmmm…. I think I’d rather have them understand the importance of what I do as an educator for underprivileged and at-risk children. And then put my job into perspective with what folks do at home with their own children, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, etc. We all share a responsibility to help shape and mold the young people’s lives and a good, solidly structured home, consistent behavioral boundaries and expectations for our children really do make a difference when they start the journey into young adulthood. But don’t be over-protective of your kids either. Let them make their mistakes in a safe environment, because the world at large can be a REALLY unforgiving place and sometimes, if we make mistakes out there, they can prove to be fatal… I want readers to HELP ME help my students…. And my teachers… help us continue to make a difference in the lives of our students and the communities we work in.

Q. In a society where many things are considered “disposable”, how does restoration figure into the mix?
A. MAN! So I work in the Educational Options Division of a school district in urban Sacramento California and we have, in our division, for many years said, “We are known as throw away students, throw away teachers and throw away administrators.” Meaning all of us, from the students through the administrators have at some point been considered throw aways… less than… not good enough for “regular education.” All of us, in one way or another, in our previous schools and/or jobs, didn’t fit the mold of what good students, teachers and administrators were supposed to look like so we were dismissed and “sent” to continuation schools where we would either be re-habilitated or just wait out the life of our professional careers. Well we have started a trend in our district, courtesy of Dr. Larry Buchanan, ret’d and Dr. Patricia Newsome, Acting Superintendent, of really building up the Educational Options Schools. So we are shifting attitudes and acknowledging our mistakes but moving ourselves toward a better, healthier future. It’s really a shift in attitudes that will change society… consider the “Green Movement” currently afoot in America… we change out our old incandescent light bulbs in favor of energy efficient fluorescent bulbs. We recycle everything from aluminum to plastic to motor oil. We see people trading SUV’s for hybrid vehicles and taking their own bags to the grocery store. We compost our garden and yard scraps. And yet I have two schools and am associated with two more which house over 1400 students who are considered to be “throw aways.” I have a CalSafe program on my campus which is a daycare center for teen parents… I have 18 babies and toddlers enrolled in that program right now and more on the way. Down the street from my campus, I know a woman who lives under a bridge because the older man she was taking care of passed away so the family fired her and she started drinking and can’t seem to hold a job. I have students enrolled in my school who have no place to call home but the back of an abandoned car or a filthy motel room, and I have a significant portion of my students who are enslaved to the Foster care system….

I could fill a semi-truck with the number of toothbrushes, pairs of socks and coats we’ve handed out over the years I’ve been here. Society has deemed that some of its own members are “disposable”. So how does “restoration” figure into the mix? It doesn’t figure into the mix… it IS the mix. We need to start cleaning up the souls we’ve thrown away and disregarded and judged and sentenced right here in our own neighborhoods. I’m afraid it’s a bit of a hot topic for me because there are some who start talking about “THOSE KIDS …. THOSE PEOPLE…” and they sort of get on their high horses and peering out through their glass houses and pointing fingers at all the systems, the government, the educational system, the welfare system and such… But THOSE KIDS aren’t THOSE Kids… They’re OUR kids…

If you want to clean something up, start with your own sock drawer. Then move to your t-shirt drawer and then your closet and your garage…. Restoration starts at home. And our churches, communities and schools are an extension of our homes. I’ve got to quit because I’ll get all riled up. I guess I’m kind of passionate about the issue.

Restoration is another word for healing… so let’s heal our families and our communities first before we start trying to tell other folks how to fix the rest of the world.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Thursday Thirteen


Thirteen Phunny Thoughts
I didn't come up with any of these, and I'm sorry to say I can't credit the origin of them. They are in no particular order and have no connection other than being amusing to me--hopefully you will find them so too:
1. A clear conscience is usually the sign of a bad memory.

2. A day without sunshine is like, night.

3. Atheism is a non-prophet organization.

4. Beauty is in the eye of the beer holder.

5. Boycott shampoo! Demand the REAL poo!

6. Despite the cost of living, have you noticed how popular it remains?

7. Duct tape is like the force, it has a light side and a dark side and it holds the universe together.
8. Hard work has a future payoff. Laziness pays off now.

9. I tried sniffing Coke once, but the ice cubes got stuck in my nose.

10. I used to have an open mind but my brains kept falling out.

11. I'm writing a book. I've got the page numbers done.

12. If ignorance is bliss, you must be orgasmic.

13. Shin: a device for finding furniture in the dark.

Visit the TT HOME and find all sorts of lists of thirteen.

THE PURPOSE BEHIND THE THURSDAY THIRTEEN:The purpose of the meme is to get to know everyone who participates a little bit better every Thursday. What do you do? Write Thirteen things about yourself, summarize your week in one entry, make it easy for other bloggers to get to know you on a weekly basis. Visiting fellow Thirteeners is encouraged!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Wordless Wednesday

KITES






For more WW check HQ.

Meeting Shalee

One of my favorite blogs from the very beginning of my addiction to hobby of blogging was Shalee’s Diner. She appeared across the internet to be witty and well read, totally in love with her family and very sold out to the LORD. She came across as energetic and someone that was very open and easy to get to know. I now can report all of that is totally true!

Shalee tagged me for my second ever meme—and when you are a newbie blogger that is a really cool thing! Even if you are ratting on yourself. (So totally high school, I know, but hey I’m geeky like that.) It was a surprise when I realized that she didn’t live terribly far away. And I thought…well just maybe, she’d be nice enough to meet for coffee sometime. And she was kind enough to agree! Brave, isn’t she?

Driving to our little meet-up I kept thinking to myself, “Good grief! You’ve pestered this poor soul into meeting you. What was she thinking?"

I’m not sure what she was thinking but I can tell you she has the patience of Job because she put up with me for two and a half hours! She should get a medal for patience & bravery…I am just saying. She didn’t even roll her eyes at me once, or have her husband call and get her out of the bookstore for an “emergency.”

We settled on meeting at a local Barnes & Noble, because who can go wrong with coffee and books? I figured if she was totally bored she could at least look at some books instead of listening to me. But she scored us some comfy seating and we ended up talking almost the whole time and then stopping off in the kid-lit section to get books for our respective darling children—okay her two are darling, my two…ummm…apparently didn’t win the angel award while I was gone.

How do you talk for two and a half hours to someone you just met? I don’t know, but we met just after eight and I was still blabbing at her when Barnes & Noble was starting to clean up… We chatted about books and blogging and husbands and children and family and how God does the most amazingly perfect things in lives, even in some unsettling circumstances. But driving home I realized that there were some serious issues that we had forgotten to cover—I totally forgot to razz her about her latest wildlife sightings and close encounters.

She said that she’d be nice and not tell you what a total goober I am, but if she saw my little escapade leaving the parking lot, she might just spill the beans.

So Shalee—if that was you I pulled out of the parking lot after, I really wasn’t lost. I knew where I was the whole entire time…it just wasn’t where I wanted to be. And I did get turned around and headed the right direction…after a bit. And if that wasn’t you—just pretend you didn’t read this last part and you don’t know I still get lost when I cross that state line.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Children's Book Monday

The Mix and Match Book of Dinosaurs by George Sanders
illustrated by Alex Block

About six years ago I stumbled upon this really fun and creative book. Roo was an early reader and a huge fan of dinosaurs. He memorized the names of various dinosaurs and was always ready for something new.

This book is spiral-bound. The ten "pages" are divided into thirds A large beautifully drawn dinosaur spans the whole page and is divided at the tail, body and then head and neck. You can flip one page at a time and will have a great illustration of a stegosaurus, triceratops or euoplocephalus, etc. Great for word/syllable recognition.

But the fun really starts when you flip a piece of a page randomly--mixing and matching tail, bodies and heads. You might come up with a STEGO-RANNO-DON (stegosaurus tail, tyrannosaurus body and iguanadon head). Or a GAL-CERA-SAURUS (gallimimus tail, triceratops body, tyranosaurus head). The blurb on the back says you can create 1000 variations. The art is impressive because it works amazingly well attaching to such varied dinosaurs.

This is a fun book to look at together or for some fun solo time for dinosaur fans. It is a unique idea.

Children's Book Monday is home at A Path Made Straight, Elise's blog. See the great reading ideas there!

Book Giveaway

The winner is Sonya at Mo Mhile Gra. Congratualtions Sonya. Let me know where to send this to and I will get it out!

More book giveaways are forthcoming--not sure of the exact dates right now. But stay tuned.

The Divine Appointment by Jerome Teel.

This week's giveaway is a book I hosted earlier. You can read the publicity promo and author interview here. It is a book that is on my Fall Into Reading List and I am looking forward to reading it.

To enter the giveaway all you need to do is leave me a comment in the comment section and be willing to email me your info for snail mail if you win. If you would like to link to the giveaway please feel free to do so. Giveaway will close on Sunday, October 21st.

I am offering this book as part of Overwhelmed With Joy's Pay It Forward Book Exchange. I hope if you win you will pass on this or another book of your choosing. It's always so fun to get a new (to us, anyway) book in the mail.

Visit Overwhelmed to find other blogger book giveaways going on right now. Her next giveaway will be the first week of November.

Happy reading!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Grains of Gratitude

I am grateful that we survived last week. Much running, driving, sitting waiting and then being able to watch Boo’s stage debut. He was a little boy in the ballet Mme.Butterfly. He wore a wig of straight black hair and if you weren’t looking you would never have known it was him. He had a blast. The company was so kind, especially the ballet masters. And I was moved to tears watching this beautifully choreographed ballet. It was breathtaking and my baby was in it!!

I was blessed by the moms of the other children who participated. We had a common bond and got a chance to know each other and I think some friendships were formed. The boys and I had lunch with one of the moms and her children today. Boo hooked up with his cast-mate and they are cut from the same cloth entirely. She is a lovely little girl and so much fun. Her brother and Roo have known each other for a while and they are never at a loss for something to talk about. He is such a bright and energetic guy. They told riddles and laughed and ate well (you know one of those “mom” thing to be concerned about).

The new restaurant we ate at was a blessing to be grateful for. It is close to where we are several nights a week and the food was awesome!! And not terribly expensive. We’ve been looking for a new favorite so now we’ve found one. Nice people, good food! A winning combination.

Roo has a birthday coming up in a few weeks. My father has asked that I continue to do the shopping for him (Mom had asked that I do it for her while she was ill) and I was able to find some really great bargains this week. I had a 40% off coupon for one item and found a sale on another really great gift. What a wonderful thing. Now to get our shopping done.

Two sweet bloggers graced me with a couple bloggy awards. I am humbled beyond words. Coach Jenny passed the Mathetes Award and Jenileigh passed the Thoughtful Blogger Award to me. I will pass these on to some more great bloggers this week. But I just had to share that I was grateful and blessed. There were a couple days when I was sinking a little low and this helped so much in rearranging my focus. Thanks Jenileigh and Jenny.

Grains of Gratitude was the idea of Christine at Brady’s Bunch. I’ve found several people who have joined in.

What are you grateful for?