Picture Challenge 1/5 & 1/6

My picture from 1/5 is something delicious. I picked my mug of peppermint tea. It is warm and delicious, but it also reminds me of the countless tea parties I had with my mom while I was growing up. I am also reminded of the tea parties I had with my 2 eldest nieces. I still have tea parties with my children. Sometimes I will even pull out the fancy teapot and china cups with saucers.  It is a tradition of sorts.

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1/6 is a self portrait. I wasn’t looking forward to this one because I had no idea what to do. Then life unfolded very quickly on my computer. I was horrified as I streamed the news live. There is an active shooting at Fort Lauderdale airport…or there was when this picture was taken. People were killed. People are injured.
This was about the same time I learned a friend from long ago is very sick and in critical health. She is too young to be called away from this earth. Life isn’t always pretty. Sometimes it ages us. The worry, heartache, fear…..
However, I am putting my trust and hope in God and offering prayers of peace and comfort to those being impacted by the shooting and for those who also know the beautiful lady who is fighting for her life.
So this is me in real life.

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~Andrea

Picture Challenge 1/3 & 1/4

I promise I took my picture yesterday! I just didn’t get it posted because I blew a tire on the highway. It was epic. It was also dark and I was by myself. A beautiful friend was on the same highway and knew what happened so she pulled up behind me and stayed until my husband could get to me. She is awesome. My knight in shining armor arrived and changed my tire and showed me my very literally destroyed tire. I opted to go home after that and crash on the couch.

My 1/3 picture is of an animal. I could have gotten creative here, but instead I opted to take a picture of Sunny Day. Sunny is a chocolate lab who thinks we starve her. She is a 4 year old ball of energy and so loved. Her favorite thing to do is try to trick us into more food. She will try to convince the people who hadn’t fed her that she never ate. She will walk around with her bowl in her mouth and give us sad, sad eyes. She has managed a second breakfast once or twice. Sneaky pooch.
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My 1/4 picture is a favorite thing. That would be my coffee pot. I feel this needs no explanation, ha!

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How are y’all doing on your resolutions, goals, positive life changes? Let me know!
~Andrea

Circle

Today my task was to take a picture of a circle. The obvious choice being my wedding ring. Of course I picked that, but I also picked my grandmother’s ring. Her ring has the letter A on it. I am her only grandchild to share the same first initial so I got the ring and I cherish it. My grandmother and I were close. I called her ever Sunday. When she would go to Florida in the winter I would drive to see her (Florida is closer to me than where my family is from). This woman was amazing. She told me stories, gave me advice, would share some of her heartache. Through it all she was a tough as nails woman with grace and charm who took the tough times and learned from them. She was devoted and loving. I pray I am half as amazing as she was. I miss her terribly every single day of my life.

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My wedding ring….18 years. It seems like yesterday and forever ago all at the same time. We have had amazing highs and devastating lows and through it all we have held to each other and our wedding rings symbolize that commitment. Marco is my best friend. He knows my worst secrets and my best attributes and he still loves me. He is a pretty amazing person. He is my comfort and my life.

~Andrea

Purple

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Purple. My favorite color is purple. Today Zen has been playing with his Play-Doh he got for Christmas. He has been creating and mixing all afternoon. It is so beautiful to watch him and participate in his imaginative play. I have “eaten” more ice cream today than I can count. He always gives me purple because “It your favorite, Mama!”
Thank goodness it isn’t real! His passion for play is beautiful and the fact he can be occupied for long periods is a blessing.

Saying Good-Bye to 2014 and a Welcome message to 2015

I think 2014 was better than 2013, but 2013 was a mixed year; sweet Zen arrived but Mark lost his job and my grandma died. Was it better or worse than 2014? A baby sure is a pretty amazing thing, but so much “yuck” happened also. As I sit and think about it 2014 was mixed also; we moved back to MO (yay!) but we are still struggling to get back on our feet. It is hard. Every time we feel like we are getting ahead something happens. I could rattle the list out for you, but I am not sure if it would be uplifting (some really cool things happened) or depressing (some really yucky things happened).

I think I will refrain from the list and instead simply say “Good-bye 2014. I will take the lessons I learned and apply them to my life as best I can. I will remember what needs to be remembered and I will let what needs to stay in the past, in the past. Thank you for the good times. Thank you for time in general because it does pass all too quickly.”

“Hello 2015. What will you bring? Can I tell you my hopes? My dreams? My wishes? I hope Mark finds a better job so we can do more than just barely survive. I would love for him to find a job with health insurance so I am not in constant fear of “what ifs.” My dream is that he would, for the first time ever, have a normal job schedule so that we can see him every day instead of just twice a week. My wish is that those in my life fighting illness will be cured. I pray for them every day and I see glimmers of hope, but I also see the reality that chronic illness holds. I wish them to be healthy and fully alive.
I would like you to pass slowly so I can savor the moments better, but not so slowly that the appreciation of time wears thin.
I would like more laughter and less tears. I want more sunshine that is warm on my face. I want my children to have time to run and play and that their innocence lasts another year; please don’t take that from them.
I pray earnestly that you are the year that creates families for my friends and family who have waited so long. Too long.
Please be gentle, 2015. We, the world, have seen enough sadness. Please let this year be a year filled, not with fear, but with love and acceptance. Welcome 2015. I hope we can be friends.”

~Andrea

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