Friday, August 30, 2013

Rough to Ruff!

A day where I had hoped to accomplish much before work, has turned into a less-than-productive one.  In the first few seconds of stretching before what was suppose to be my workout - a fun one with dancing involved - (in the privacy of my home because no one should have to see that!) - I pulled a muscle in my back.  In the same place I popped a rib out a few weeks ago.  If this would have happened on a Monday instead of today, I know I could get to the chiropractor and get some quick relief.  Unfortunately, it didn't, and the office isn't open until Tuesday of next week.  So ice and rest and taking it easy is in the works.  That's the Rough part.  Especially when I work in retail.  On a negative note - this makes it pretty hard to keep working on the weight loss and fitness.  :-(

On a positive note - I found a fun and very easy craft to do that wouldn't hurt my back while I did it!  :-)  I'm all about being frugal, recycling, up-cycling, re-purposing, whatever you choose to call it.  My husband was throwing out some tank tops he had that were too stained to wear for work, but nothing else was wrong with them.  I snagged them from the recycle box and decided to make doggy chew toys with them.  That's the Ruff part!

Here are the instructions:

1.  Cut the front, sides and back so you have four pieces of material.

 2.  Cut each piece from the bottom to the top in thirds, leaving the band that was sewn in the top to keep the fabric together.  Pull each band to stretch it.  I find that this makes for a longer, stronger rope.

3.  Simply, but very tightly, braid the pieces together, keeping the fabric pulled tight as you go.  The top part where the edging was on the shirt forms a nice little chewing end for your dog.

4.  When you get to the end, simply but very tightly tie knots, alternating each piece.  This provides another knot and chew surface for them to 'brush their gums and teeth'.

Voila!  You are done.

For my husband's lab Molli, (who happens to have extremely strong jaws and teeth like bolt cutters),  I braided three of these finished ropes together for a little bigger, stronger challenge.  For my daughter's mini dachshund Chloe, I left one of the small ropes made from the side of the shirt as-is for her little mouth.  As you can see by the pictures, they love them!
In case you are wondering, they aren't going to last forever, especially if you have a dog like Molli.  But they do last just as long as the chew toys I buy at the store, without having to spend an extra $5-$10.  Success!

Now it's time to ice the back, watch The Waltons, and rest before work tonight.   Enjoy your day and the blessings God provides therein!

Sunday, August 25, 2013


The highlight of our weekend was time spent with our son, daughter-in-law and beautiful granddaughter.  At a year old, she is the apple of our eyes.  And the delight of our hearts.  It's amazing to see how quickly she grows, especially since we only get up to visit them about once every three weeks.  We are blessed to have a beautiful, healthy granddaughter, and wonderful, healthy children.  For that we are eternally grateful and thankful.  This was the last trip there before the craziness of the Fall Season.
As the next few months come upon us, my schedule will get busier.  School will commence in two weeks, retreats and conferences begin, and time will be stretched.  My prayer life will increase, which is a good outcome of the busyness.  My reliance upon the Lord, His wisdom, and the strength He will offer will be in full force as well.
The reassurance is (and will be) knowing that amidst the chaos, my constant will be God.  I know that He will be there for me whenever, wherever, and however, to meet my needs.  As I navigate the newness of doing it all without meds to help with the pain, anxiety, and whatever else may come, I know that my protection from being overwhelmed with come from the Lord.  When I am exhausted and unable to do anything but sleep, I know He will be ever-aware, ever-vigilant, and ever-protective.  How do I know this?  Because the Bible tells me and I believe it's inerrant promises!
Psalm 121:3-4 (HCSB)
He will not allow your foot to slip;
your Protector will not slumber.
Indeed, the Protector of Israel
does not slumber or sleep.
Thank you Lord, my Protector, for your omnipotence and omniscience.

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Stinks to be me?

My darling husband and I were talking earlier today, and he asked how I was doing.  As I gave him the run-down of how miserable I really felt, he hugged me and said, "I'm sorry.  If I could take the pain away for you I would."  I replied, "Thank you hun.  I know you would.  But you can't, so...stinks to be me." 
Then he chose to enlighten me on how awful it must be to be me, with an adoring husband, healthy children, all my needs met, etc.  Of course I had to let him know that I am deeply grateful for all of that, so it really doesn't stink to be me.  It just stinks to feel the way I feel today.  My lower back is killing me, for no reason I can think of.  My muscles hurt no matter what's going on.  My joints ache.  My stomach is queasy when I eat.  I'm tired, but can't get a decent nap.  I'm a little grumpy off and on.  My allergies have me sniffling and blowing my nose.  I have a dull headache constantly.  I have "power surges" (others label them 'hot flashes') that come and go throughout the day, leaving me drenched in sweat.  It hurts just to exist.
Now whether this is my body in detox from the prescription meds or just being my contrary body, I don't know.  All I know is that it stinks to live in my body right now.  When I go for my yearly checkup, it will be interesting to see the doctor's reaction to my own desire to eliminate all prescriptions, and to see if he'll be on board with my decision.  This process is like taking that proverbial one step forward - three steps back.
Amidst all of this, I can't help but to think of the 'affliction' that Paul had to endure his entire life.  Not to mention the beatings, starvation, imprisonment, and torture he endured in the name of Christ.  In 2 Corinthians Chapter 4, Paul wrote words that reflected his train of thought, and set focus on God's glory each day, regardless of what our flesh experiences.  It's these words that I look at on days like today.

2 Corinthians 4
 "16 Therefore we do not lose heart, but though our outer man is decaying, yet our inner man is being renewed day by day. 17 For momentary, light affliction is producing for us an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison, 18 while we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen; for the things which are seen are temporal, but the things which are not seen are eternal."  (NASB)

I have no idea how my affliction will benefit the kingdom of God, but I know in His way, in His time, and according to His purpose, God's glory will shine as I continue to suffer.  So my train of thought must be like that of those saints in the Bible who've suffered and gone before me, leaving their written testimony as an example for me.  There are several other scriptures that refer to gaining strength, reassurance, comfort, grace, mercy, love, endurance, and much more from our Lord.  For these I'm thankful. 
God is at work in my life.  Not just on this fleshly body I'm in conflict with, but most importantly on my eternal soul, which is so much more important.  When I go to sleep tonight I can find my own comfort in knowing that while I am at rest, trying to give my body the chance to recover, the Lord is still awake, at my defense, and still working on me.  

Psalm 121:4 "Indeed, the Protector of Israel does not slumber or sleep." (HSCB)

Thank You Lord for always working in my life.  Thank you for the many, many, many blessings You've gifted me.  Thank You for the wonderful husband You've blessed me with.
So...stinks to be me?  No.  As long as I have You, blessed to be me.