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Monday, February 28, 2011

Post 100 and other thoughts


Post 100!  Yee haw :)  The switch over from my old blog to this one has been smooth sailing.  100 posts in just over 2 months and all of you - my wonderful readers - have left beautiful comments over and over.  Thank you friends!

On another more serious note.  Something has become apparent to me.  About to lay my heart bare here so be ready!  I am truly blessed to have moved to this point in my life - victory despite the terrible abuse I suffered as a child.  God is just SOOOO amazing, isn't He?  He truly is healer - almighty -  father God.  I am forever grateful. Yet, I have a struggle that I never related to my past until just this weekend.  Just yesterday during worship at the DP ceremony - it smacked me right square between the eyes.  Now that God has "confronted" me with it - I must deal.  I'm not one to run from the things God wants me to grow in - and this is no exception.

 I work with abuse victims quite often.  I meet them everywhere - church - online - in the grocery store.  Many, many people have suffered from abuse in their lives.  One thing I find true to all survivors is their self-esteem is damaged.  I've spent countless hours telling people how beautiful, amazing, talented, wonderful they are in their father's eyes.  I've prayed with them, over them, for them - that they would just grasp how deep - how wide - how long - is the father's everlasting love for them.  That they would truly feel the father's pure loving arms around them, pouring praise, wiping their tears - treating them as a father treats a child (or should).  That they would hear their father's loving voice.  Hours people - HOURS!  I have often walked away feeling sad because I know they don't get it.  I know they don't believe what I'm telling them.  I  know they look at me with suspicious eyes and questioning hearts - and I know - they just don't get it.

And then yesterday - God said to me this.

Do you?  Do YOU believe me?  Do YOU get it Tami?  DO YOU?

Uh oh.

And suddenly - I realized - I - am no different to any of those people I talk with/counsel with on a regular basis.  Oh, I can believe it for them - with all of my heart.  I KNOW how much the father loves them!  I don't doubt that for even a second!  But for me?  I have to admit - that's an entirely. different. story.

I realized, in this way - I am still broken.  I'm not happy about it either let me tell you!  These kinds of things make me mad - that I haven't seen it - or haven't examined it - or haven't been honest with myself at this level - before.  That I put this off until now.  How could I do that?  I've got it all together dog gone it!  (that's a joke folks) How did I miss this?  It's so important - and I missed it.

Anyway.  That's my self confession.  100 posts to say now I'm seeking God on this - for me.  I'm on my knees, asking for something supernatural - because that's what it's going to take for me to grasp this one.  I know it before I even seek God on it.  I'm waiting in expectation for the moment I can feel those arms around me the way I've prayed for others.

And whether you believe this or not - the day just went from cloudy to sunny - literally - and the sun shone right through my skylight onto my computer.

I think I need to go now.  I think God has something to say.

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Daughter Project

Today we had the land dedication ceremony for The Daughter Project.  The Daughter Project is a recovery home being built for girls who are victims of sex trafficking.  It was an amazing 3 plus hours of my life.  Below you will see a video of the song we started worship with. We were all in tears thinking of the girls God is preparing to bring to us soon.  There is nothing like worshiping in a room full of like minded people - all on fire, burning with passion to bring justice, compassion, mercy - God's love - to a hurting world of trafficked girls.  I am so glad we were there.

At one point, Jeff (DP director) prayed - I don't remember his exact words - but basically that God would help the girls hold out another day because their rescue is coming.  Sends goose bumps down my spine!  Reminds me of the song "My deliverer is coming - my deliverer is on his way!"  Amazing.  I think of myself - in a bit of a different situation - but the week I was to be "rescued" - I didn't know.  I didn't know my rescuer - my deliverer - was on His way.  I didn't know the life He would bless me with.  I was stuck in a pit of hopelessness - and now - here I am!  I am so excited to see God do in other's lives what He has done in mine.  I can't wait!

Here are the lyrics - following is the video.  Click on it - it's a beautiful song and so fitting for this.  If I ever speak - I will gather up some courage and sing this song.  It's my life story.  So cool!  Isn't God amazing??

All this pain
I wonder if I’ll ever find my way
I wonder if my life could really change at all

All this earth
Could all that is lost ever be found
Could a garden come up from this ground at all

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

All around
Hope is springing up from this old ground
Out of chaos life is being found in You

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us

You make me new, You are making me new
You make me new, You are making me new

You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of the dust
You make beautiful things
You make beautiful things out of us



Saturday, February 26, 2011

Shells

Some of the shells that wash up on the beach were once very beautiful. We don't know what kind of journey they had to take to get them in their fragile condition. The same is true for people. Be kind.
~ Maribeth Jordan~

As I said previously, this is a quote from my friend Maribeth.  Maribeth runs a page on Facebook called Hope.  She is also the friend that featured my life story on her page.  I love this quote - and here's my thoughts on it.

I think all shells are beautiful.  Of course, you know how much I love the ocean so picking up shells is something I am naturally inclined to. Shells are beautiful things - and to get them to the polished state we find them on the beach - we all know what had to happen.  They were tossed, turned, thrown, knocked around before they land on a beach where you or I might find them.  Even those that land in broken pieces are beautiful.  There are various colors, shapes, sizes - but they all have something in common.  They weathered more than one storm to develop into something beautiful.

I'd like to think of myself - and all of us - as one of those shells.  No matter how "perfect" our lives, we all have weathered something difficult.  For some of us, it was an abusive childhood.  For others, death, loss or illness.  Others, a rough marriage or difficulty in parenting.  Yet others, job problems, loss of income, financial instability.  All of us have been tossed and turned - knocked around by something or someone.  Some of us have landed in pieces - all of us have been left with something broken in one way or another.

However.  We are all beautiful if we allow the hand of our maker to polish us.  What knocks us down can actually mold us into something amazing - smooth - if we allow God to work in our lives.  When we land on the shores of heaven one day - our maker will pick us up, turn us over - look at our beauty and tell us "well done, good and faithful servant" if we follow him in this life.

What storms have you weathered?  Have you landed in pieces?  Do you allow the hand of your maker to polish you into something beautiful? It's not easy - but just as shells on the beach land with grace, dignity and amazing beauty - so can we.


Great quote

My friend Maribeth posted this on Facebook.  It's a little teaser for a post to come.  For now - enjoy the prelude :)

Some of the shells that wash up on the beach were once very beautiful. We don't know what kind of journey they had to take to get them in their fragile condition. The same is true for people. Be kind.

Friday, February 25, 2011

On Blogging


I found some of these questions in blog land.  I thought this might be fun - so here goes :)

What are your thoughts about blogs/blogging?
Obviously I love blogging.  I love writing.  I wish everyone blogged.  I'm a blog stalker and a blog writer.  Love, love, love blog(ging)s :)

How many hours a day do you spend time blogging?
Lots.  But honestly, it depends on the dayI'm a streak blogger. Maybe that sounds bad.  I mean I go in streaks.  Sometimes I post a lot, sometimes days go by and I couldn't write if my life depended on it.


Any silly/crazy/funny stories or experiences related to blogging you'd like to share with the readers:   Two that I can think of.  One is funny, one not so funny.  Once I was in Kroger parking lot and a woman approached me and said she was a stalker of my blog.  I had never seen her before.  It was, quite honestly, a little unnerving and I kept thinking in my head "Oh boy - WHAT have I written about lately and just how much does this woman know about my family??"  but it turned out she is a wonderful person and we got to be friends.  Another time I had a woman FREAK out on me and leave me nasty comments and pretty much tell me I wasn't much of a Christian.  Unfortunately I allowed her rudeness to get to me and questioned myself for some time until one day I thought no more - I like me - just the way I am - and I don't feel I've done anything wrong.  Well she threatened to never read my blog again to which I happily replied "no problemo"  I've been removed from a blog roll or two for my frankness on certain issues and I used to allow that to get to me too.  But again - I am me.  Sometimes I say stupid things and sometimes I am - well - honest and blunt - and if you can't love me flaws and all - I don't really need you as a friend anyway so cest la vie.  Although, I have worked harder at keeping things positive and when discussing difficult situations involving other people, I try to keep my focus more on how I am growing and struggling through it and not so much on what the other person did.  I still fail - but I have grown in this area in the past few years.


What are your favorite topics to blog about? 
Everything.  I love talking about my kids, my good lookin' man, marriage, parenting, my walk with God - anything. 


Where do you do most of your blogging?
At home.  Usually after everyone has gone to bed.  Nothing frustrates me more than trying to put my thoughts on paper when there is chaos around me.  I'm pretty focused when I write and hate to be interrupted.


Do you pay attention to your blog stats?
Yeah.  I wish I didn't, but I do.  Every time I see a new follower on networked blogs or google followers, I get all excited.  I especially love to see how many countries in the world my blog gets hit on in.  Does that make sense??  I love when I see another new country, or a country I know is restricted or not open to the gospel.  I love reaching the world from my little 'ole place in it.  It's fun :)  I have yet to see any representation from Africa though - maybe once but that's it.  I'd like to see that change :)  I've seen hits from a whole lot of other places though - Mexico, USA, Canada, all over Europe, a lot of Asian countries - even restricted ones, India (one of the top three places in the world that hit this blog) - all over.  No, I don't mean that to brag.  If you know me, you know I just love all kinds of cultures and people and it's exciting to think someone that far away is reading my blog.

What kinds of blogs do you like to read?
All kinds.  I like reading family blogs of those I know (Hi Carlee, Stacey, Alana, DaNella, Bethany, and Jackie), I love reading missionary blogs (Hi Jennie Joy, Arise Haiti & the Mazurs),  I love reading crafting blogs (too many to name), I love reading blogs by women who inspire me (hello to Deanna , Women Living Well, Amira) and I love exploring and finding new blogs (hello tatertots and jello, don't waste your homemaking, jewelry for change, my repurposed life, beauty in the attempt, Misty @ bake me awayA thing of beauty, etc, etc, etc!).  Forgive me if I missed yours.  I like finding new blogs to read and be inspired by.  There are a lot of amazing people out there and blog land is a place you can meet many of them.


Do you have any questions for me?  I'd love to hear them.  Leave a comment and I'll try to answer either via a post, e-mail or comment back.  Thanks for stopping by!

March - boost energy

I failed in February - sorta - on my happiness project.  However - I must move forward and not dwell on my lack of being consistent in February.  It's not that I didn't do it - I just didn't pay attention if that makes any sense.  I didn't focus, make it a priority.

So - to help me be a tad bit more focused in the month of March - I'll ask you for some help!

March is boost energy month.  More specifically - focus on my health - or lack thereof :)  Here are the things I will be focusing on:

Week 1 - no pop
Week 2 - no pop & exercise 30 minutes 3 times a week
Week 3 - no pop, exercise, and eat a clean breakfast
Week 4 - no pop, exercise, eat clean break, and take a multivitamin & fish or krill oil

As I am that all or nothing type of girl I've mentioned before - I do have fish oil in my cupboard from forever ago (does that stuff have an expiration date??) and I have already incorporated into the menu for the next 2 weeks an eat clean breakfast.  However - this week - week 1 - my sole focus will be no pop.  That is going to be hard enough.  I'll try to eat a clean breakfast and remember the multivitamin - but no matter what - no pop.  60 days is my goal.  60 full days without a dew.

You got that right - I'm gonna drink a lot due between now and March 1st :)

Need your help!  Keep me accountable.  Ask me - bug me.  Please!!  I'll be honest I promise :)

What's for dinner?




Tonight for dinner I'm making Carne Guisada.  Carne Guisada means "meat in gravy."  Whenever we go out for Mexican, this is what Marty orders.  I found the recipe on allrecipes.com - but it says it's a Puerto Rican dish. Not sure if that's just this particular recipe or what.  I'll have to do a little research on where Carne Guisada originated.  Wherever it did - this is dinner tonight.  Also gonna throw in some homemade torts and canned refried beans topped w/ monteray jack cheese.  (I can make them homemade but didn't think to soak the beans overnight)

Here's the recipe for those who are interested:

Carne Guisada III (Found on Allrecipes.com/submitted by fivebrigs)
Serves 4 (I doubled the recipe)


Ingredients

  • 1 (8 ounce) can canned tomato sauce
  • 1/4 cup sofrito sauce (found in the Mexican food section at Kroger)
  • 1 (.18 ounce) packet sazon seasoning (Mexican food section at Kroger)
  • 1 tablespoon adobo seasoning (yellowish bottle w/ blue top found in spices and in Mexican)
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
  • salt to taste
  • 2 pounds beef stew meat
  • 2 cups peeled, cubed potatoes
  • 1 cup water

Directions

  1. In a large pot, combine tomato sauce, sofrito sauce, sazon seasoning, adobo seasoning, oregano, and salt. Simmer over medium low heat for 5 minutes. Add meat, and cook until evenly browned. Stir in just enough water to cover meat. Cover, and simmer for about 1 hour. Add potatoes, and cook for about 30 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

Nutritional Information open nutritional information

Amount Per Serving  Calories: 682 | Total Fat: 46.5g | Cholesterol: 155mg

I'll let you know how this turns out!!

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Soften the rough edges

If you look to the left side of my blog - you will see that one of my 40 in 40 goals states "get rid of community bitterness" or something to that affect.  I'm not going to go into great detail about what it means exactly.  If you know me, you know more about that.  If you don't - let's just say since we moved into this community 12 years ago - it's been a rough go.  There are some aspects of the community we haven't found - well - welcoming.  We've been hurt repeatedly and at times, it's been very difficult.  We've considered moving more times than not - but we are still here.

Anyway - this post is not to rant but to talk about softening the rough edges.

It's hard for me to let go of hurt.  Really difficult.  Walls are my specialty and the more hurt I get, the higher, wider and stronger those walls become.  Vulnerability is not something I'm good at.  Even worse than that is to drop the chip on my shoulder in certain - um - aspects of life here.

There is a certain individual who lives nearby that I have not spoken to in over a year.  Our kids play together but as I mentioned above - I build walls when hurt.  This person hurt my family when I thought they were a friend.  I have avoided contact because I just don't know if I can trust them.  Fool me once, shame on you - fool me twice - shame on me.

This week we had the ice storm.  At 2 or 3 in the morning, the trees began to fall.  We looked across the street and realized our neighbors might be in trouble.  As high as my walls are - their kids spend a lot of time at my house and for them, we went out.  We stood in their front yard, freezing rain pouring down on our heads, bewildered at the trees falling all around us.  Their house got pelted, their cars got pelted.  Their power lines got pelted.  We stood in the freezing rain together and the bitterness began to wash away.  We offered our home.  I cracked the window, threw open the door and realized that although this might hurt in the long run - it was time to let go and move on.

I'm glad I did.  This same neighbor came over and helped M with the tree on our roof (although they were not able to remove it - but they tried) and once again - we can smile and wave.

Letting go of the community thing is hard.  So much stuff to let go of. So much potential for future hurt and pain, anger and frustration.  I feel as if it's almost inevitable.

But for this moment - I'm glad a chip got knocked off my shoulder by some freezing rain and falling trees. 

God continues to soften my rough edges.  I'm a work in progress and most likely this is an issue that will be revisited over and over again.  It's hard to be vulnerable and not keep my guard up - but there is growth in the struggle.  For this, I am glad.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Determined Steps

Today I was reminded of a verse from Proverbs that goes like this:  In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps.  It's found in Proverbs 16:9.

When I was - oh - 18?  I attended a Christian college.  It was the year before I met my hubby.  I was a freshman and fell head over heels in love with Matt.  I met him at college and I thought for sure THIS was the man I was to marry.  We talked about it and I was pretty sure we were headed for a fast engagement.  I was a baby Christian and had yet to learn that I needed to possibly seek God on this as well.  He was a Christian too so I figured if we were both Christians then it had to be God - right??

I don't remember what month we met but I remember I was always concerned about the girl he was "friends" with back home.  He seemed a little too close for comfort.  His family was in love with her as well.  Anyway - the year went on and we grew closer and closer.  We were head over heals in love.  Unbeknownst to Matt, I was still being sexually abused.  My Dad had yet to be arrested.  In March, that happened - little did I know it was the end of 2 relationships in my life.

Matt took the news as well as could be expected.  He was supportive, he cried with me and I thought he understood.  I think he did - until he went home to talk to his Mommy about it.  Before I knew it, Matt withdrew.  When I finally got him to talk he told me his Mom felt like if I was 17 and chose not to run away from that environment - then it must be I wanted it.  I wanted to be raped, sexually abused, terrified, hit, emotionally devastated.  I didn't realize I wanted those things - but I guess I must've because that's what Matt's Mom said (note the sarcasm).  Yes, I wish I could talk to this woman today - I have a few things I would like to say to her.

That was the beginning of the end of the relationship.  I held on for dear life as long as I could.  I was devastated when he dealt the final blow and broke up with me.  (Note - he went back home and ended up marrying that "friend" I mentioned above).  I didn't think I would recover.  I thought my life was over.  I couldn't fathom there was anyone else out there for me.  I cried for weeks.  I could barely get out of bed.  I was angry - I threw things.   It was not pretty.  I know I humiliated myself by calling him up and begging him to stay with me, to give me another chance over and over again.

But - as Proverbs says - my heart said Matt - but God - in his infinite mercy - had much better plans for me.

I returned to school in the fall - now my sophomore year - Matt did not.  In October, I met Marty.  In November, we began dating - and the rest is history.

I look back now - and think of all that could have been.  I could have been in a family where I was made to feel I was less of a person because of what happened to me.  I look back now and I think WHY did I tolerate her speaking to me - about me - like that??  I would slap you silly now if you ever said to me those things were my fault.  I could have dealt with that for the rest of my life - having that shame heaped upon me.  I could have been part of a family who thought I was a prostitute (at the age of 4 or 5) (sarcasm again) and enjoyed the life I came from.  I could have my children around a Grandmother who told them terrible things about their Mom.  I could have spent the rest of my life living in a deep and dark pit of despair.

But even more importantly - had I followed my heart and God had not ordered my steps - look at all I would have lost.  Look at the man who God blessed me with.  On our first date, I dumped all my garbage on him.  I did it intentionally - trying to drive him away before I got too attached.  He was quiet and then in the end, when I asked "What do you think"?  He looked at me and said "I would be a real (pre-following the Lord days)  d*** if I held that against you".  Look at the kids God has blessed me with.  Look at the amazing life I live.  Look how the shame and the fear is gone and the memories don't hurt as much anymore.  None of that would have been if I had gotten my way and married Matt.

God always knows what is best for us.  Sometimes in the midst of the deepest, darkest, most violent storm - we can not see the light.  We can not possibly imagine what incredible things the future will hold.  All we can see is what is right in front of us.  But God - He orders our steps.  He loves us and the life we will be blessed with if we can just hold on a little longer is more amazing than any of us knows.

I encourage you if your in the midst of a very painful situation.  God knows.  You can't see - but He can.  I know it hurts, I know it's hard.  I know you just don't understand.  He has not forgotten you.  He loves you and He knows what is best for you.  Wait for it.  Wait and see what the Lord will do.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Ice storm Part Two - TIMBER!



The tree we were all worried about last night.  Big section broke off today and fell on the roof, narrowly missing the skylight Marty and I were sitting under.  The roof is too slippery to get up on and see if there is any damage.  Doesn't appear to be from inside the house.  We'll have to wait and see.



The skylight we were sitting under.


 View from back a ways.  Could have been much worse with the size of that tree!!


Side View


Another side view






See what I mean?  A lot more tree could have come down!


What didn't or doesn't come down in this storm will be coming down in the spring!


Gotta love a man with tools - wearing a pink hard hat :)  Thanks to the neighbors for the use of the hardhat and to friends for the use of the chainsaw! 

Ice storm 2011










My friend Amira

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Random

No posting makes for a bad blogger!  Sorry - I've probably lost all my new-found readers!

Life has been INSANE this past couple of weeks.  I can't believe how much we've had on our plates!  Having 2 teenagers sure makes for a busy schedule.  I kid you not - this weekend - we have attended 6 soccer games, taken both kids to various practices, helped a friend plan and pull off a surprise party, attended band practice, taken E to classes - and the list goes on.  This afternoon I thought I would pass out from exhaustion!  Busy Tami = non-creative Tami = non-writer Tami.  Sorry folks!

I had lots of opportunities to practice "Let it go" this week.  Also had some opportunities to speak the truth in love.  I'm getting better.  I have always been an all or nothing kind of girl.  Either I say nothing or I blow a gasket.  I'm getting better at finding the balance.  Still hate confrontation but am learning that sometimes it's better to just talk things out rather than allowing them to fester for long periods of time and then totally blowing it.  I don't know that confrontation will ever be anything I "enjoy" but I am learning I can be Godly about it.

As far as the happiness project goes - I have NOT been doing so well.  As I said earlier - busy - busy - busy.  I don't even know what I'm supposed to be doing right now!  That's not a good start my friends!  This week I'll have some time to re-group as my favorite man has mid-winter break.

Speaking of mid-winter break - on the agenda is some spring cleaning.  My laundry room drives me INSANE.  It's so small and has so much crap in it.  I am DETERMINED  by the end of this week - the laundry room and our bedroom will contain 50% less crapola.  Gonna clear, clear, and clear some more.  Clear out until it hurts.  Watching a million HGTV and TLC shows has taught me if your house ain't big enough for the junk - then you have 2 choices.  Bigger house - or - less junk.  In this economy, bigger house is not a possibility so less junk it is!

Spiritually - it's getting time for a trip to Ludington - lol.  It's getting time for some sunshine, warm breezes and the sound of waves rolling into shore.  Of course right now, all you would do on the shores of Lake Michigan is freeze your butt off - but I am longing for some alone time with the Lord on a sand dune staring out over the Lake.  I don't think I'll get to do this anytime soon - but maybe when the kids are on spring break we can visit my Mom and M and I can take a day trip.  I am looking forward to that before I even have it planned!

On another non-family note.  Please pray for my friend A.  A has a daughter who has something called Noonan syndrome.  Her little girl is not doing well right now.  I spent this afternoon hugging on her as she was hooked up to her oxygen tank.  Week after next, I'm going to have her over if she is feeling up to it and we're going to bake some cookies and maybe I'll treat her to a happy meal at mcd's.  Mom is terrified and the little girl is as well.  They found a mass on her brain and she will have surgery soon.  Due to the syndrome, Mom has explained to me that there is a high likelihood this mass is cancer.  Please join me in prayer.  The pressure is tremendous for this single Mom trying to raise 4/5 kids on her own.  I can't imagine her day to day struggles.  I love this family and am praying God performs a miracle. 

That's about all at the moment.  Enjoying the day to day life God has given me.  Thankful for good kids (not perfect - but good!), a loving husband, a roof over our heads, food on the table, and the love of friends.  Who could ask for anything more?  Not me.  I am blessed by this amazing life.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

FYI

Haven't had a chance to check this out thoroughly yet.  My friend Amira gave me the link.   Trying to bring awareness.  Please click and watch.  Thanks.

Frontline - Sex Slaves

Great quote

So today started off a bit rough.  Not going into details here.  Anyway - I went from my e-mail to my facebook account and Pastor Nate had a quote posted.  Wow.  God's timing is incredible sometimes.  I really needed to hear this this morning to remind me of who I am in Christ.  Maybe some of you need to hear it to. 

A negative past does not disqualify you from having a bright future. And no mistake you've made is too much for the mercy of God. Regardless of your past mistakes, God still has a great future in store for you.


Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentines Day Pics



 Table set for a little candlelight dinner for the 4 of us!  Made Indian Food - potato curry and Chicken Mahkini - so yummy!!


 Be jealous - be very jealous.  Just kidding!  HOW creative is he anyway??  Box of chocolates and on the bottom of each chocolate was a little message.  What a smart guy I married!!



 Literally the prettiest flowers I have ever been given.  I LOVE pink and these were just beautiful!

How cool is that?  Little pink hearts glued to some of the flowers.  LOVE it!!

Great Valentines Day!!  How about you?  What did you do to celebrate today??


Be Gretchen

"Be Gretchen (the author)" is in the Happiness Project book I've been telling you about.  I read that statement a week ago, but it's just now settling into my spirit.

"Be Gretchen" is the authors way of saying she needed to be herself.  She wanted to figure out who she was and remain true to that person.

It's slowly but surely giving me some freedom in my life.  I can't say I'm always good at "being Tami".  I find myself wishing I was someone else - or rather had traits others have.  I wish I was more like my husband - spontaneous and goofy.  I wish I was more like my daughter - uncaring of what people think of her.  I wish I was more like my son - athletic and small in stature.  I wish I had hair like Stacey's (yes Stacey, I envy your hair - lol!!). I wish I was more like so and so - unafraid of using the talents God has given them publicly.  I wish I was more like so and so - more gifted musically than myself.  I wish I was more like so and so who enjoys exercise and being healthy and fit.  I wish, I wish, I wish.  I wish I wasn't so quick tempered, I wish I was skinny, I wish I had money to blow, I wish I could run marathons, I wish I was great at home decorating, I wish I had finished college, I wish I had more motivation in life.  I spend a lot of time thinking "WHEN I finally lose the weight, or WHEN I can afford to get my hair permed or WHEN I...whatever - fill it in" THEN I will be happy!

Wrong.

This weekend - the phrase - Be Gretchen - hit home.

I am not a lot of things - but I am equally - a lot of other things.

I enjoy reading.  I love playing around on the computer.  I love bike riding, long walks in nature.  I love flowers and willow trees and elephants. I love the beach, I enjoy travel, other cultures.  I love new foods.  I had thyroid cancer and my metabolism - although I have massive room for improvement - but I will never be 120 pounds again - and that's okay.  I am a nice person, I enjoy encouraging people.  I love photography.  I am a spitfire at times.  I am fiercely loyal to those I love.  I am never going to be someone who likes roller coasters, who feels comfortable in front of large groups of people.  I am never going to run a marathon or compete in the Tour De France.  Although I LOVE my friends - I will always prefer a weekend with my hubby and kids - it's just me.  I will always be a little private and shy in person.  I have always been, and will always be, a person who works hard at staying out of the limelight - a wallflower - and that's okay.  I will never have a home fit to be in a magazine - my house will always be lovingly lived in.  I like rap music, I play the clarinet, candles make me happy.

I am me.  I don't need to be anything but what God made me.  It's okay to be who you are.  Accept it, embrace it - and then run with God in it.  I am going to work really hard at accepting myself for who I am.  There is always room for growth - God never intended us to be stale and dormant - but I am going to start loving where I am at in life in this moment and stop wishing I was more like someone else.  No more.

Be Tami.

In honor of Valentine's Day!!

So I've said it a million times before and I'll say it a million times more - I married an AMAZING guy!  And can I just say - he's one good lookin' man!  In honor of Valentine's Day - here's some pics of us over the years.  Happy Valentines Babe - I love you more than I did the very first Valentines Day we celebrated together in 1990.  


Bahamas - December 2009

Christmas 2008

Summer 2010

Dating - maybe 1990 or 1991

Dating again - 1990 or 1991

Ludington - Spring Break - 2010 - I think!

May 23, 1992


One more time....

HAPPY VALENTINES DAY TO THE MOST AMAZING MAN IN THE WORLD!!

I LOVE YOU!!



Friday, February 11, 2011

Let it go

This has been a theme ever since I started reading The Happiness Project.  It's been a cranky kind of week and although I would like to tell you I've been working hard at my first week goal of The Happiness Project which states "Think before you speak when your upset or annoyed" - the reality is - I've failed miserably.  Which is kind of funny because actually - BEFORE I typed that out and posted it on my blog, I was working on it and doing rather well!  Accountability will kill 'ya :)  Just kidding.

I've had plenty of opportunities to practice "Let it go".  It keeps running through my head over and over again.

Why is it so easy to become frustrated with people and situations in life?  Why is it so difficult NOT to take things seriously all the time??

Philippians 4:8 states:
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things.

I think if I spent more time focusing on those things - noble things, true things, right and pure things, beautiful things - then maybe "Let it go" wouldn't be so difficult.  If we focus on the positive - I think it's easier to be a positive person.  On the flip side - if we focus on the negative - we are more likely to be a negative person.

Although "Let it go" is a GOOD thing (vs. blowing up and getting all stressed out) - I think I've got to go deeper.  Why even get to the "let it go" stage?  Focus on Jesus more and then maybe life's irritations would be so - well - irritating.

What do you think?

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

25 days of praise


Funny story.  Week 4 of 25 days of praise and I ask my husband what he wants for Valentines. Day  Here's how the conversation went:

Me:  What do you want for Valentines Day?
Hubby:  A card
Me:  Huh??  A card?? Will a card make you feel loved and appreciated??
Hubby:  I already do

Awwww!  Isn't he amazing??  A card was NOT the answer I was expecting.  I was expecting something I would never write on here!!

Man I love this guy!! 

Here's what Courtney says about week 4, the final week:

This Monday is Valentine's Day. In a lot of marriages, this day comes and goes without a whole lot of acknowledgement. We women see it on the calendar - we know it's there, we've helped our children write out all their little Valentine's Day cards...and we cross our fingers that our husband NOTICES it is Valentine's Day.

If you are a lucky one - you will get a card, flowers, dinner out, maybe some chocolates and some romance. And well - the rest of us...it might not happen and we'll just have an annoying day lol!

But rather than waiting around for something that might not happen - how about we use this day to show our husbands appreciation for the blessing that they are in our lives. This day gives us a reason to shower our husbands with some extra Tender Loving Care!!!
Remember - there are no exceptions in the Bible where it says on Birthdays, Mother's Day and Valentine's Day we have permission to get selfish and self-centered.
Philippians 2:3,4 says "Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves, not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others."

My husband is thoughtful. It is not uncommon for him to show up with my favorite drink from Starbucks, a late night run to fill my car up with gas, or a timely back rub. But he's not Mr. Romance. I am 100% secure in his love for me by the way he works so hard to provide, listens to my long detailed stories lol!, protects me and the children and does a whole slew of other things 365 days a year! I don't want to despise him on February 14th for not coming up with a soap opera type romantic extravaganza. I know it's not gonna happen and it probably won't happen for about 90% of us!
So why not have some fun planning something special for our husbands and making a memory! Do you know what your husband wants? There's still quite a few days left - so ask him!

Let me make a suggestion as to what a majority of men want even if they aren't willing to say it:
1. A great tasting, looking, smelling home cooked meal and home cooked dessert (I plan to make an all red dinner - red drink - red spaghetti - red dessert)

2. You pursuing him for a night of passion (remember you are married - HAVE fun! God created passion for us married folk! lol!) Don't be afraid to flirt again - wink at him across the table - suggest what is for dessert after the kids are in bed *wink*. Loosen' up and have fun! Make a memory that neither of you will forget!
3. Write a letter expressing all the things you admire about him. Consider reading it out loud to him at dinner in front of your children. Or if you are going out to dinner - put your list in your purse and then pull it out in the middle of dinner and read it to him. Trust me - he will LOVE it!

Which of the three does your husband need from you right now?

Me speaking again -
I have to say something.  My husband is truly an amazing man.  As we close up this challenge - let me acknowledge something.  I AM ONE OF THE LUCKY ONES!  How have I gotten to be so blessed??  I am not bragging or trying to put that in anyone's face - merely shaking my head at how much God has blessed this undeserving girl.
Thank you JESUS for giving us this awesome thing called marriage.  I love this man more than I ever thought possible. 

Still lovin' this book!

I am continuing to read The Happiness Project this week.  I'm telling you - this chick and I - are waaayy to much alike.  I do believe we were separated at birth.  She just cracks me up.

Okay - some more sweet quotes from the book (go buy it - you will not regret it.  I'm bummed my copy is a library copy, meaning it has to go back and I can't mark it all up).

In her chapter "Remember Love" (on marriage):

"Happy people generally are more forgiving, helpful, and charitable, have better self-control, and are more tolerant of frustration than unhappy people, while unhappy people are more often withdrawn, defensive, antagonistic, and self-absorbed.  Oscar Wilde observed, 'One is not always happy when one is good; but one is always good when one is happy'."

"Whatever love I might feel in my heart, others will only see in my actions."

"On the night of the party, before everyone was due to arrive at 6:30 p.m., I began my anxious last-minute tidying.  My mother loves to entertain and from her I inherited a propensity to preparty jitters, which we call 'hostess neurosis'; experienced family members know to drift out of my sight..." (CRACKED me up - that is ME ALL the way!  Finally - a name for the psychosis!)

Commenting on Week of Extreme Nice (read the book):  "It's not right that I show more consideration to my friends or family than to Jaime, the love of my life." (I HATE when I see this in others - yet I realize - I am this person.  Must be why it annoys me so much in other people)

"Too often I focused on the things that annoyed me:  Jamie postponed making scheduling decisions; he didn't answer my e-mails; he didn't appreciate what I do to make our lives run smoothly.  Instead I should have thought about all the things I love about him.  He's kind, funny, brilliant, thoughtful, loving, ambitious, sweet, a good father, son, and son-in-law, bizarrely well informed in a wide range of subjects (lol, so Marty it ain't even funny), creative, hardworking, magnanimous.  He kisses me and says 'I love you,' every night before we go to sleep, he comes to my side at parties and puts his arm around me, he rarely shows irritation or criticizes me.  He even has a full head of hair"  (Like I said, mucho similarities!)

"As the days went by, I did feel a bit of resentment when Jamie never seemed to notice that he was the winner of the Week of Extreme Nice."  (I can so see myself thinking this!)

And that's all the quotes for today folks!  At least for the next couple of hours :)  I do love this book and I am so glad for wherever I saw it (on someones blog I think) in the first place.  It's really making me think!  She talks, repeatedly, about how she shouldn't expect praise or recognition.  It has taken me a while to realize "WOW - that's ME!"  I get really ticked off when people - those in my house particularly - are not falling on their faces in gratefulness for all the stuff I do.  I realize I am a praise sucker - I eat it up big time - but I should never expect it.  I should always give and give and give some more and expect nothing in return.  It's called being a servant of Christ.  If I want the glory here - I'll miss out up there.

Anyway - READ THE BOOK - it's amazing!!

Love your enemies


Today I was listening to YES FM between 7:15-7:30 or so.  There was a word given and it went right along with something God has already been speaking to me.

Love your enemies.  Or specifically - love your enemy - singular.

The Pastor talked about applying Corinthians 13 to your enemies.  There is one particular person God has laid on my heart recently.  Even as I type this, everything in my spirit kicks at me, wanting to tell you all the wrong, horrible, nasty, terrible things ***** has done.  It's hard - difficult - gut wrenchingly so - not to put it all out there.  I don't WANT to pray for this person - honestly - even though this is a terrible thing to admit - I don't care where ***** ends up - I'm that mad.

This morning God whispered something ever so quietly to me.  He said "What if you pray - and ***** changes?"  I couldn't believe it.  I almost - gulp - didn't want to believe it.  I thought to myself "It's just not possible!  ***** is crazy!"

But what if it is?  It was technically impossible for me to change - but I did.

So - now I know what I must do.  I must swallow my pride.  I must swallow my need to be proven right.  I must swallow my sense of justification - and pray.  Maybe ***** will change, maybe they won't - but that's not really up to me is it?  I've been told what to do - now, I must do it.

I Corinthians 13 (Tami paraphrase)

If I, Tami, speak in tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love for *****, I am only a resounding gong or clanging cymbal. (In other words, I'm obnoxious and noisy - which makes me no different than *****).  If I have the gift of prophesy and can fathom all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have a faith that can move mountains, but do not love *****, I, Tami, am nothing.  If I give all I possess to the poor and give over my body to hardship that I may boast, but do not have love, I gain nothing.

Love is patient with *****.   Love is kind towards *****.  It does not envy (this wasn't a problem).  It does not boast.  It is not proud.  It does not dishonor *****, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered at *****, it keeps no records of *****'s wrongs.  Love does not delight in evil (or the undoing of *****), but rejoices in the truth.  It always protects, always trusts, always hopes (that ***** will change), always perseveres.

Love never fails.  (***** will change)

Fill in the ***** with your enemy in your life.  This one is a tough pill to swallow.  Trust me, I know.  Just THINKING about praying for ***** makes me cringe and goes against my very nature.  Which tells me, it's a God thing.

Love your enemies.  It's in the bible.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Happiness Project

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I've never done this before - but if you want to join me on My Happiness Project - you can link up below.  I hope this works!

Basically, linking up just says your going to work on creating your own Happiness Project.  Doesn't have to be as detailed as mine.  You can do it for a week, for a month, for whatever.  It's up to you! If joining is going to cause you UNhappiness - well then, that's a problem.  I love checking out new blogs and seeing what others are up to - so link up with me, no matter how short your happiness project is :)

What do you think?  Link below if you want to join!

My Happiness Project


WARNING - SUPER LONG POST! This will be broken down into shorter posts at a later date.  I needed to put this all out here so I had it to refer back to!  For now, you might just want to read February and then worry about the rest later - unless your looking to create your own Happiness Project - then you can use this to get ideas.  I apologize for the length - it will not always be this way!  At the beginning of each month, I will re-post just that month to save us all a major amount of time!

If you read my previous post, you'll know what this is all about.  If not, go HERE and you'll see what I'm talking about!!

This is a rough draft subject to change!  This is what I've come up with so far. 

February - In honor of Valentines Day - I'll use what Gretchen uses and call this month Remember Love/ Marriage. 
Week 1 - Think before you speak when you are upset or annoyed.  Don't just say what comes to your mind.  Trust me - this one will be a challenge for me!
Week 2 - Praise your man every day.  This is already a work in progress - so continue on!
Week 3 - Continue Monday night dates.
Week 4 - Become the servant instead of always being the one served.


March - Boost Energy (Lord knows this is an area in need of massive improvement)

Week 1 - Exercise 3 days a week / 30 minutes per day
Week 2 - Say YES to physical activity.  I can't tell you how many times a day my son wants to play some crazy game that involves punching/hitting/kicking/wrestling/throwing/tackling/pain.  I try to get out of this as often as possible.  No more.  It's time to suck it up and say yes.
Week 3 - Eat a clean breakfast.  Small steps here people, small steps!
Week 4 - Take a multivitamin daily.  Actually - how about just take my meds consistently??  I am SOOO bad at this!!  Take my meds AND take a good multivitamin every day!


April - Contemplate Jesus (this may actually be something I'm already doing or will do sooner - but this is the month we'll really focus on it with no distractions)

Week 1 - Read the bible every day - no exceptions
Week 2 - Purchase or get from the library a new devotional book and use it
Week 3 - Everyday learn a new worship song
Week 4 - Purchase or get from the library a couples devotional and start using it together.  Pray together.


May - In honor of Mother's Day - Lighten Up/ Parenting Month

Week 1 - Play when asked.  Games, basketball - whatever - but play.  I know this is stupid - but I did not grow up "playing'.  Playing has been and will always be a difficult concept for me.  Sometimes I'm just plain inept in this way.  I need to learn to play.  Even at 17 and 14, they need me to play.
Week 2 - STOP whatever you are doing - reading - on the computer - cleaning - cooking - whatever - and listen.  Really listen.  Respond.  Let them see you are listening.
Week 3 - Think before you speak harshly.  When they make you crazy - don't react.  Stop.  Shut up.  Listen.  Try to figure out what's REALLY going on.  Then respond without being harsh.  Firm, not harsh.
Week 4 - Shamelessly stolen from the book - Be a treasure house of happy memories.


June - School ends this month which means the house goes to trash. Well, not this time.  June, we're gonna focus on the house.

Week 1 - No piles of laundry.  Keep. up. with. the. devil. laundry.
Week 1.5 - Plant flowers.
Week 2 - Buy or make something beautiful for our home. 
Week 3 - Make it smell wonderful.  Nothing better than a beautiful smelling home!
Week 4 - Clean the sink before you go to bed.


July - SUMMER!  YEE HAW!!  In honor of summer - July is dedicated to:  Be serious about play!

Week 1 - Complete a crafty craft.  Something fun.  Include the kids.  Make it messy, but make it fun! 
Week 2 - Be silly!  Much like not growing up playing - I also did not grow up being silly.  Learn to be SILLY!!  Any suggestions??  This is one I'm gonna have to research!
Week 3 - What do you find fun?  Figure it out.  What tickles your fancy and makes you feel like a kid at Christmas in anticipation of doing it?  Find it - and do it!
Week 4 - Ride a roller coaster.  Yikes.  Did I just say that??  I hate them.  But, in honor of my daughter leaving for school in one month - I will. ride. a. coaster.  of my choosing - but bigger than the iron dragon!


August - Start of soccer season.  Stressful time for me.  Also the time when I will drop my first born child off at college.  So this month - I'm going to focus on pursuing a passion.  Something I love.  Something to distract me from 2 very difficult things.

Week 1 - Keep playing my clarinet!  Instead of wanting to punch a wall in frustration or cry all the way home from Minneapolis - dive into the clarinet.  Play it until your lip bleeds and you've thrown all those emotions into it like the old days.
Week 2 - Write, write, and write some more.  Put some more time into writing that book.  It's long over-due.
Week 3 - Take pictures.  Find beautiful places, beautiful people and take a lot of pictures.  Find the peace and photograph it.
Week 4 - Sign up for a digital photography class.


September - Kids back in school means time to focus on Friendship!!  Plus, in the heat of soccer season and my first born being off at school - I'm going to need some shoulders to cry on, some women to hold me up and some laughter.  

Week 1 - Make 3 new friends.  Get outside of your comfort zone.  And at least one of them has to be in person and not through the Internet.
Week 2 - Remember birthdays - get them written down and start making some cards.
Week 3 - Find some women to hang out with regularly.  Bible study, book club, bunco.  Anything.  Start it yourself if you have to.  Surround yourself with women who love you, your family, your babies and who lift you up and love you just where you are.  Loyal friends.  Friends who laugh.  Friends I can call in the middle of the night.
Week 4 - Invite the new friends over!  Dinner, above group - whatever - just have them over!


October - Keep a contended heart.  Again - pulling myself through a stressful time!

Week 1 - Laugh out loud.  A lot.
Week 2 - Let it go.  Just let it go.  "It" meaning anything and everything that happens to stress you out.
Week 3 - Create a place of refuge.  On the deck, in the yard, in the house.  Create it.  Put beautiful music there, peaceful surroundings, a place to go. Create it and go there.  Put your bible, your journal, your headphones.   A place to go where you can get away.
Week 4 -  Stolen again from the happiness project.  Act the way I want to feel.  If I want to be happy - act happy.  If I want to be content - act content.  If I want to be peaceful, act peaceful.  If I want to be emptied of stress - empty myself of stress. Act the way I want to feel.


November - Learn to be Grateful.  In honor of Thanksgiving.

Week 1- create a Thanksgiving jar.  Every day write something your grateful for and put it in the jar.
Week 2 - Find someone in worse shape than you - sit and listen, go and help.  Realize how much you have to be grateful for.
Week 3 - Write a letter to the following people to tell them how grateful I am for them:  Marty, Elyse, Jon, My brother & sister, My Mom & Step-Dad, My in-laws, My nieces and nephews and maybe more.
Week 4 - Reflect - read what you have written, reflect on what you have seen.


December - Do it all.  Reflect.  Are you happier?  Is happiness something you can, in fact, work on?


I'm working on creating a button and a link up type of thing if you want to join in.  Give me a few days to figure that out, and then I'll put up a link party and you can jump in!!

The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin



I picked up this book today from the library.  I have already read through part of it - and I love it.  It's a bit academic and if you are not a reader, you might need a dictionary.  However, I swear this girl and I might just be sisters because in some ways, it's like reading my own thoughts in a book.  I have only gotten through the first couple of chapters and - already - have my own happiness project planned.  That will come in the next post.

For now - let me share a few quotes from the first part of the book.

"I had much to be happy about.  I was married to Jamie, the tall, dark, and handsome love of my life; we had two delightful young daughters, seven-year-old Eliza and one-year-old Eleanor; I was a writer, after having started out as a lawyer; I was living in my favorite city, New York; I had close relationships with my parents, sister, and in-laws; I had friends; I had my health; I didn't have to color my hair.  But too often I sniped at my husband or the cable guy.  I felt dejected after even a minor professional setback.  I drifted out of touch with my friends, I lost my temper easily, I suffered bouts of melancholy, insecurity, listlessness, and free-floating guilt."

"I wasn't depressed and I wasn't having a midlife crisis, but I was suffering from midlife malaise - a recurrent sense of discontent and almost a feeling of disbelief."

"But though at times I felt dissatisfied, that something was missing, I also never forgot how fortunate I was.  When I woke up in the middle of the night, as I often did, I'd walk from one room to another to gaze at my sleeping husband tangled in the sheets and my daughters surrounded by their stuffed animals, all safe.  I had everything I could possibly want - yet I was failing to appreciate it.  Bogged down in petty complaints and passing crises, weary of struggling with my own nature, I too often failed to comprehend the splendor of what I had.  I didn't want to keep taking these days for granted.  The words of the writer Colette had haunted me for years:  'What a wonderful life I've had! I only wish I'd realized it sooner.'  I didn't want to look back, at the end of my life or after some great catastrophe, and think, 'How happy I used to be then, if only I'd realized it"

"I needed to think about this.  How could I discipline myself to feel grateful for my ordinary day? How could I set a higher standard for myself as a wife, a mother, a writer, a friend? How could I let go of everyday annoyances to keep a larger, more transcendent perspective?"

"All these thoughts flooded through my mind, and as I sat on that crowded bus, I grasped two thing:  I wasn't as happy as I could be, and my life wasn't going to change unless I made it change.  In that single moment, with that realization, I decided to dedicate a year trying to be happier."

And on that note - the Happiness Project was born.  I haven't read the entire book and I know the author and I don't agree - or at least don't see from the same perspective - spiritually.  However - that does not mean she didn't come up with one brilliant idea.

I'm a goal oriented person and before the first chapter was read, I had already created a chart in my head.  How could I, the person much like the author who was not unhappy but could be happier, really focus - really work towards - making those areas in my life I struggle with - how could I make those - well - happier?

I will share with you in the next post what I have come up with.  There will be a new category - called My Happiness Project where I will place all posts regarding this.  Some I will borrow from the book, some I will make on my own.  Let's see where this takes us!  What do you think??  Wanna jump in??

Monday, February 7, 2011

25 Days of Praise


So it's been a while since I've done any posting on this subject!  Rest assured - I have not forgotten.  This week the focus was on intimacy.  With the blizzard last week and my untimely sickness - this week was honestly a struggle for me.  Kids home every day is not conducive to intimacy!  It was not a complete fail however - but that's all I'm gonna say about THAT!!

ANYWAY!  Tomorrow we start week 4 and the final week!  I will actually miss this challenge.  The crazy thing is I've been focusing so much on this challenge that it never dawned on me that at the end was Valentines Day!  I think I've used up all great ideas I could possibly ever come up with - so maybe I'll leave the planning of that special day to the man :)

Tonight my son rolled his eyes after I read a status update I had put on Facebook - and said "you two act like a couple of high schoolers!" to which my husband replied "well I do believe that's the best compliment you could have paid us" - and - of course - my being the more serious one - said "and I think you should be thankful because it's not something a lot of your friends have."

I am thankful, as always for this amazing guy God has blessed me with.  We have a quote up on our bedroom wall and it says "The Lord Blessed the Broken Road that led me to you".  It's true - the Lord DID bless my broken road and I am so glad He led me to my hubby.

Here's what Courtney says about week 4:


Week 4 February 9th - Women love romance, chocolate and flowers on Valentines Day. Do you know what your husband wants? Ask him! Let me make a suggestion as to what a majority of men want even if they aren't willing to say it: a great tasting, looking, smelling home cooked meal and home cooked dessert, you pursuing him for a night of passion (remember you are married - HAVE fun! God created passion for us married folk! lol!) or a letter expressing all the things you admire about him. One of these things he would surely enjoy. Which of the three does your husband need from you right now?


I don't have to ask, I already know!  I will ask, however, to make sure I'm not just making an assumption.  And in case that man is reading this post - I do love romance and flowers - and I especially like away time and dinner out.  I'm not a big chocolate fan - don't hate it - but it's not something I "love" like most women!

Either way - I just love to be with HIM!  

How has this challenge gone for you?  Have you learned anything about yourself?  About your spouse?  What have you found difficult?  What have you found easy?  What needs work in the future and what do you think your pretty good at?

Keep it up my friends - marriage IS hard work - but the reward is great.   

To close this one out - here are some quotes I found on marriage.  Enjoy!

Success in marriage does not come merely through finding the right mate, but through being the right mate.  ~Barnett R. Brickner

More marriages might survive if the partners realized that sometimes the better comes after the worse.  ~Doug Larson

The more you invest in a marriage, the more valuable it becomes.
Amy Grant

Any fool can have a trophy wife.
It takes a real man to have a trophy marriage.
Diane Sollee

I have no way of knowing whether or not you married the wrong person, but I do know that many people have a lot of wrong ideas about marriage and what it takes to make that marriage happy and successful. I'll be the first to admit that it's possible that you did marry the wrong person. However, if you treat the wrong person like the right person, you could well end up having married the right person after all. On the other hand, if you marry the right person, and treat that person wrong, you certainly will have ended up marrying the wrong person. I also know that it is far more important to be the right kind of person than it is to marry the right person. In short, whether you married the right or wrong person is primarily up to you.
Zig Ziglar      





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