Tag Archives: God

More change; Valley Sunshine

Starting near the end of last year and continuing in January of this year I shared with you my thoughts and other people’s quotes regarding CHANGE.  I felt there was marked change going to occur – specifically, but not only, in my own life.

2016 is definitely shaping up to be my year of change.

A long chapter of my life ended this week. It was so hard to let it go.

When I was in my early 30’s, and the mother of three young children (a fourth born later), I started a friendship newsletter – called Valley Sunshine – that quickly turned into a Christian one which developed into a type of ministry. I started with about three dozen ‘members’, a number that rapidly increased to over 500 worldwide! It was phenomenal to me. That’s with no advertising except word-of-mouth, except for a few mentions in others’ newsletters. (Once there was a half page article in the provincial newspaper about me/Valley Sunshine!) For over ten years that continued – run on donations – no subscription fee, with mail coming to me almost daily from all over the world, occasional phone calls, and a surprise package now and again. It was like a huge family of friends who encouraged one another. I know the Lord touched lives through that little homegrown publication; it was my joy to be part of it, and I look forward to one day knowing all He did through that humble publication. With the passing of my mother (my greatest “fan”), I took a long break from VS publishing.  A few years ago I started it up again on a much smaller scale by subscription as requested. (It remained non-profit.) Finally, this week, I sent the final issue out. It was a hard decision to come to, but a necessary one. Trying to compile that last issue I mourned the loss of this connection with people I’d grown to love, this change of calling on my life, the hard choices; however, eventually I sensed the relief of admitting it’s done – it’s run its course. I still feel the loss, and I will for a long time. But …

It’s time to allow change in my life to have its own space.

As a caregiver one’s time is used very differently, it’s taxed in a way one does not expect. The things that used to be easily addressed cannot be handled the same way. I had to accept it was time to let change happen and allow the Lord to redirect my life.

Writing in other ways has floated to the top of my life. As you may know, I’ve been interested in writing for MANY years, have taken courses and participated in various online writer’s groups. Now I’m working on children’s stories again. I have a writing coach/buddy. I’m a member of an online critique group, and recently joined an in-person writer’s group (mixed writing genres) that meets once a week. I’m a member of 12×12 and participate in PiBoIdMo and ReFoReMo. All these things are intended to help me learn and improve. Life is still busy. Writing is a huge part of that for me.

Now I’ve told you much more than I had intended to when I started this post. I was going to give you a fun quiz to do, and the above was going to be the lead-in. It just grew and grew!  Next post will be the quiz.🙂

Much love to you.

What’s the hardest thing you’ve had to let go because it’s time so that you can move on to other things in your creative life?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! 🙂

Quotes about change

In this post I am sharing a few quotes about change, since this is my year of change.  :)  Perhaps they will speak to you or remind you of another quote that has been meaningful to you.

If you don’t like something, change it. If you can’t change it, change your attitude.Maya Angelou

Your mind is a powerful thing. When you fill it with positive thoughts, your life will start to change.  – Unknown

All you change is yourself, but sometimes that changes everything!  Gary W. Goldstein

Your life does not get better by chance, it gets better by change.       Jim Rohn

 

The above quotes are inspiring and encouraging. One thing I want to add is that what I’ve found in my own life is that my efforts to change myself usually end up as a source of discouragement and disappointment, which I think is what often happens to many people who make new year’s resolutions. However, if I let the Lord change me it becomes a reality. A heart change is a real change. It may seem as if I have changed myself when it is the Lord changing me. I like that. 

Do you have any inspiring quotes to share about change?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! 🙂

PS: Please remember to pass on the word about my 2nd giveaway of 2016 offered in my January 21 post; draw February 10. Watch my countdown calendar!

 

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

HAPPY NEW YEAR, dear readers!

May 2016 be an exciting year of change in your life!

May God bless your life according to what is suited to you.

Thank you for faithfully visiting my blog. I hope you continue to find things of help and interest to you here.

 As we enter a new year, my goal is to write more, read more, and progress forward to publication.  (I don’t set resolutions.)

What are your goals for 2016?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!🙂

39 years ago today I said, “I do!”

Today is a gorgeous, warm, Autumn day, much like October 30, 1976, except it was less windy.

Thirty-nine years ago today! That is amazing to me.

Thirty-nine years ago I nervously walked that long aisle with my dad.

Thirty-nine years ago I started a new life with my new husband.

It hasn’t been easy, it hasn’t been problem-free, battle-free, sorrow-free.

There have been joys, frustrations, heartbreaks, good ideas, bad choices, losses, struggles, surprises, many laughs, fights … and so much love – sometimes hard to recognize, but strong enough to survive.

Thirty-nine years ago today I said “I do” –  and I did, and I would again with the man God prepared for me.

It’s been worth it.  (Thank You, Lord!)

our wedding cake topperThis is our original wedding cake topper.

Does this season mean anything special to you?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! 🙂

The Heavens declare!

There is a Scripture verse – Psalm 19:1 – that says so much in a few words. 

The heavens declare the glory of God;
And the firmament shows His handiwork. 

I love star-gazing. There is nothing that compares with the astounding magnificence of a clear night sky.

I love the sky at all times, ever-changing, always amazing.

I am in awe of the expansiveness of the sky, the perfection of the horizon’s curve.

I’m impressed by the clouds beautifully suspended in the inner circle of the atmosphere that encloses our globe – our home.

When I was skydiving … oh my! The thrill of rolling out of that plane and falling into the seeming nothingness of the sky at 10,000 feet up!

When I received the video of my first jump I was again in awe of the perfection of the roundness of the bubble we live in, the gentle curve of the horizon, the creative layout of the land and water beneath us.

On the ground we get to see amazing things from a different perspective. Sunsets and sunrises can be exquisite!

This morning I want to share with you a photo taken by my daughter from her home on the lake. She captured a breathtaking sunset a few nights ago. I got her permission to post it here. Please respect that it is her photography.

Sunset. Oct'15

Isn’t it absolutely gorgeous!

I think if I lived there I would have permanent nose prints on my windows overlooking the lake.

Is there anything in Nature that simply takes your breath away because of its amazingness?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! 🙂

 

 

 

 

 

Revisiting my bucket list from 10,000 feet up

I so very much love to stand out under the expansive sky at night, looking at the countless stars and the beauty of the night sky. The unique globe we live on, the bubble of air we live in, totally astound me. The curve of the atmosphere above and around us … the vastness of God’s creation … that serves to sustain life, almost takes my breath away. I am in awe over and over again. 

All month I’ve been planning to tell you about something I was able to do this summer. As my title suggests, I made a change to my bucket list — you can refer to my bucket list post HERE — because I completed one adventure I’ve been wanting to do for about seven years now. It was time to go …

 tandem  sky-diving!

On August 1st my four daughters, my grandson, and I went to the little local airport where I had reserved time for myself and my youngest daughter to tandem skydive. It was a gorgeous, sunny, hot day with a few fluffy clouds in the wide blue sky and a little breeze. An ideal day for jumping out of a plane.

7.our plane

After filling out and signing those just-in-case legal release forms …

1.Signing forms pre-jumpwe met our jumpmasters and got fitted into the proper safety gear.

We selected the jump with video, which, at the time of this writing, we have not yet seen. I dread mine and later I’ll tell you why. After that we got a short instruction of what to do, what not to do, and what to expect.

Because there were enough jumpmasters (experienced skydivers) available, my daughter and I were able to go up in the same plane together and jump about a minute apart. So cool!

8.Lynn boarding plane

My jumpmaster and I boarded the plane first, as you see in the above photo, followed by my daughter and hers – who happens to be the owner/operator of the business. I sat behind the pilot and faced my jump partner, while my daughter – in order to exit first – sat by the door, her jump partner behind her.

10.waving on take-offIn the above photo the plane’s window is ajar, and behind the pilot’s arm you can just see my hand as I’m waving to my family watching us taking off.

9.there we go!And there we go!

The flight up to 10,000 feet over the beautiful Annapolis Valley was exquisite and I loved it! The Valley is very beautiful and rich with colour and amazing landscape divided up with lakes, the Bay of Fundy, many plots of farmlands, the towns and little communities, and the hilly and forested regions. It was a great opportunity to see in a different way the part of the world God made for me (us) to live in, and it was such a thrill.

The photo below is a small sampling, so imagine this view from completely above the Valley:


This photo of Annapolis Valley is courtesy of TripAdvisor

I do love to fly! In a little Cessna it’s even more thrilling. During the flight I found that I was nervous and excited, more excited than nervous, and not the least bit afraid. You might argue that being nervous is fear, but for me it was just concern about whether I’d remember what to do. As it turned out, I didn’t remember everything and I survived anyway. 🙂

Nearing jump time we were securely clipped together, newbies in front of and to our jumpmasters, and at the right elevation the first couple rolled forward out the door and disappeared. We followed. It was astounding! Strangely, I think that was my favourite part of the jump. No fear. It was not terrifying in the smallest way, just plunging out into wide open air space and rolling two or three times in midair. Oh. My. Goodness. Now I can hardly believe I DID IT!

The freefall was so fast, dropping for about 40 seconds before the ‘chute was released. I found the freefall to be very loud with the air beating against us as we plummeted (as one daughter on the ground called it) toward the earth. I had no bearings and found the straps uncomfortably tight – but that’s a good thing, really. It was when the parachute was released that the discomfort hit me. The tight straps, the feeling of motion sickness, the problems I had because of not remembering to keep myself positioned correctly, all took away from what was otherwise an amazing experience. Yet, I don’t regret it. Not at all. And most people aren’t affected the way I was; my daughter wasn’t.

The view is amazing from up there. What I noticed was the difference in air temperature; the closer we got to the ground the warmer the air became. A bonus for me is that as we neared our landing my jumpmaster surprised me by giving me temporary control of the steering! Pulling the left cord moved us left, pulling the right one … you guessed it … steered us right. Then he took over to guide us safely into our landing. 

coming down; Althea orange, Lynn multiIn the above photo look for the two colourful dots, the bottom orange one is my daughter’s parachute, the top tri-coloured one is mine.

Here’s a closer view of my descent: 14.Lynn coming in for a landing

It seemed quite awhile, but was not long at all, before I could make sense of what was beneath us. I could see the landing strip, my family standing watching and taking pictures, and the ground getting closer quickly. My daughter landed neatly with us coming in moments after, landing beside them. It was a thrill to be able to do that, and she was immediately determined it would not be her only jump. 🙂

landed.4Moving in for a happy hug.

As you can see above, the clouds were filling in more of the sky after we landed, which made me glad we jumped when we did. Before we left for home we each were given a First Jump certificate as proof and recognition of our accomplishment. 🙂

And how do I feel about the experience? I can say “I did it!” I won’t solo, although I might tandem jump a second time; right now I’m not sure. It was exciting. It was something I have wanted to do for several years, even though most people think I’m crazy even to have considered it. That’s okay. I DID IT. And I’m glad I did. I know what to expect now so a second jump should be even better.

Oh, and why do I dread seeing the video? Well, it was a close-up of my less-than-enthusiastic facial expressions as I was trying to take in everything while feeling a little queasy, and it’s not pretty when the wind forces hard against one’s face.  Yes, I know … vanity. (smile)  I was told the first jump is an experience of all that’s happening, and that’s true enough; the second and later jumps are when one can enjoy the experience more fully and be able to appreciate it better. Maybe so. Perhaps one day I will test that theory.

I doubt I would ever discourage anyone from tandem skydiving. What I would do is urge them to relax and remember to do all that is instructed. It will make it much more fun. It’s an amazing experience! I am so glad I DID IT!

we did it! 3

Have you ever skydived? What crazy adventure have you done that you would love to do again, or why would you never repeat it?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! 🙂

 

 

 

 

What a winter was 2014-2015! Let me tell you my story

As goes life, 2015 is proving to be another year of challenges and concerns. I was going to share a little with you months ago; however, the way things have been going I am so very late starting it. It’s amazing to me how quickly we are almost half way through 2015! Perhaps you won’t mind indulging me anyway?

It seems there is always one grief or stress to deal with, hardly is one behind us then another is on the horizon, besides the ongoing ones. A cousin of my mum passed away during the winter; however, because of the tremendous amount of snow we were getting, and the storms that seemed never-ending for awhile, the funeral service was not held until May when family could get together again. Of course, the next day Dad didn’t remember anything about it.

In January our daughter in Alberta asked for our advice. She’d decided it was time to move home and had a job offer here in NS! After six years of being away it was a major life change for her, an exciting one for all of us. Once the plan was settled I got busy on this end of the country. Online shopping can be fun when looking for good secondhand furniture on Kijiji. After I found an apartment that way, located a few minutes from her new job, we also were able to get a washer, a dryer, and a table and chairs set for her. Our main concern, though, was that she was determined to drive home, about 3000 miles or about 5000 kilometers – in her jeep, with all her belongings – including her two adult cats. Alone. In the dead of winter.   um… NO!   We bought a ticket for my husband who flew out to Alberta the first of February to drive home with her. That was the beginning of a crazy week.

After arriving there and getting a good night’s sleep, the next day he and she packed her belongings into a U-haul rental trailer – so full he said they couldn’t have wedged in a box of kleenex. They drove farther north to briefly visit her friend from NS who has lived out there longer than she, then started their long journey home. Since the plan was to take turns – one sleeping when needing to while the other was driving and then switching roles – and with the cats in their enclosure taking up the back seat, there was only room to sleep sitting up in the front passenger seat … as comfortably as could be arranged.

Remember, this was in the worst of our unpredictable Canadian winter. Coming across the middle of the country they experienced frigid minus-degree temperatures and bitterly cold winds in which no one should be out in the elements in miles/kilometers of nothing but dangerous weather. Nevertheless, they passed a hitchhiker daring to do just that! The jeep was crammed so full they had no room for an extra passenger, so when they stopped at a little diner they told a police officer. The officer picked up the hitchhiker to find a place for him to stay the night; otherwise, that person very possibly would have succumbed to the elements. 

 Meanwhile …

It was my week at home (instead of at my dad’s), so I was trying to keep the house and myself warm. The challenge for me was our outdoor wood furnace which I had never loaded or maintained because my husband always took care of it. I just didn’t want to. Usually, most of the wood my husband lifts into it is very heavy, way beyond what I can lift. It’s actually whole tree trunks cut into three-foot lengths or so, much of it not even split as it’s not necessary because it burns well as it is. It was only split if it was not possible for him to lift whole. Fortunately, last winter’s stash of wood had more small-sized sticks available than usual, many of a size I could handle without injury – if I were careful in how I lifted, didn’t slip in the very deep snow, and could propel the wood into the furnace to properly load it for efficient airflow. 

Now, the wood my husband can load in is so big the furnace has to be reloaded only twice a day, morning and evening. The wood I could manage was much smaller, therefore it had to be replenished much more often as it burned quicker. Let me tell you, I got more exercise than I wanted!

Because …

Unfortunately, soon after my husband and daughter started their journey eastward, here in NS we were hit with a wild blizzard that dumped a few feet of snow on us. When that settled I found, because of how the ‘white stuff’ had drifted, I could still make my way through a path in the snow to keep the furnace stoked. Then, hardly had a way been cleared in this province when we were hit with a snowstorm. A huge one. With loads more snow. By the time that one ended I had so much snow I couldn’t get out my back door so had to battle my way out the front and around the house to the now buried path to the furnace. Did I say buried? There was no longer a path beside the truck which was half buried. (see top right photo below) I have never spent so much effort and energy repeatedly struggling through such deep snow, bitter cold, and biting wind – quite an experience for little me. It had to be done. I couldn’t let the fire die out, but the snow was so high and dense I couldn’t struggle through it anymore. I wasn’t sure how I was going to do it but I was determined not to ask for help for as long as I could hold out.

snow halfway up our back doorMORE snow, truck half buried

can't get in this way our back door from the outside

 

 

 

 

That’s when my dear father-in-law came to my rescue. That morning he arrived on his tractor equipped with snowplow and blower, after I’d been shovelling in an attempt to clear snow off my deck so I could open the door and also begin a new path to the furnace. If you look at the above photos, the bottom right one, my path was along the front of the deck railing on the right, across what was our lawn and up a rise.The snow was very heavy and packed solid, so by that time I was so depleted of energy I’d given up for awhile and gone inside to warm up and gain some energy back. I told my dad-in-law I would finish the deck, just had to stop awhile because I was so exhausted, but I would do it. He insisted on doing it for me. Bless his heart. I knew he was not feeling well, either, but he still insisted despite my objections. He got it done much quicker than I could have, for sure. I certainly appreciate him, he’s a good man.

Dad D clearing deck for meDad D plowing for me

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

As for the travellers …

My husband and daughter stayed in a hotel one night – a place that allowed her cats – because it was a long stretch of nothing they were on, getting on for dark, with no idea what they might encounter since it was blustery and very, very cold. I’m sure they slept better that night; the rest of the time they slept on route.

In less than five days they made it home and I was so excited to get my arms around them! I’d prayed much for their safe travels. Interestingly,  they missed all the storms since it began storming in Alberta after they left so the bad weather heading east was always behind them, and the worst happened in Nova Scotia before they arrived. :)  Granted, there was a lot of snow clearing for my beloved to undertake once he got back, and he felt sorry I’d been stuck with so much to handle while he was away, but I survived!  :)  (And now he knows I can load that darn furnace if the wood is small enough. ah well.)

In this photo (left), with more snow coming down, I was leaning on a snowbank under which was our lawn swinging-chairs set. Somewhere.
I am happy to say there is NO SNOW now. :)  How I do love Spring and Summer!

too much snow!I'm leaning on a snowbank

 

 

 

The last thing I’ll say for now is this …

My dad – who will be 90 in a few days – is getting worse (wretched Alzheimer’s, and weak heart) but is still spunky and usually cheerful; and another dear family member has been recently diagnosed with Mesothelioma (incurable cancer) with not much time left with us. Some days life’s stresses feel so heavy on me, but then I remember the Lord is my Strength and the Song and Light in my heart. If God is for me, who can be against me?

I wish you each a sweet song in your heart.

What has been going on in your life? How do you cope? What joys do you have to share with us?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings! 🙂