Initially, ‘Glasses of Grace’ started because my niece, Grace, had to get glasses for reading. Since grace is such a spiritual topic and the fact that my niece is such a doll, I started thinking about the ways God shows us His grace on a daily basis. From His servings, His glasses, of grace to us - to seeing the world through the eyes of grace (or Grace, since she had new glasses and better sight), it made sense in more ways than one, so a title was born. Blessings and all, this is my life…

Saturday, September 29, 2007

10 things...

I was tagged by Jess at Bittersweet to play along with this meme..."10 things that make me smile." It sort of intrigued me because I really didn't know that I could come up with 10 things offhand that make me smile. I am a major thinker and ponderer though, so this challenge was right up my alley! I finally had the thought, "If something makes me smile, it has to be something that makes my heart really happy." It's taken me a little bit to come up with these things, but thinking about it that way made it seem a little easier for some reason, so here we go:

10 things that make me smile:
(and not necessarily in this order)

1. My sweet nieces

2. My goofy cat

3.Rain

4. Fall weather that is just around the corner

5. God's PERFECT timing

6. Getting home in the afternoon and seeing that
my grass has been cut (!!)

7. My wonderful friends

8. This one is silly, but hearing wind chimes
makes me smile for some reason! :-)

9. The thoughtfulness of others
(which can also make me cry!) :-)

10. The end of tax season every year (!!)

So there it is! Nothing profound, just a post that really made me have to think. If you read this, I'd love to have this glimpse into your life as well. If you will play along, leave me a comment so I can go check out your blog too!

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Life

“Life is short and we never have enough time for gladdening the hearts of those who travel the way with us. Oh, be swift to love! Make haste to be kind.”
Henri Frederic Amiel (Swiss writer known for his masterpiece Journal intime, 1821-1881)

Monday, September 24, 2007

Amazing Grace (my chains are gone)

We've been practicing this song for weeks in choir and sang it this past Sunday morning in church. I know it is applicable to all of us who are Christians, but it was hard, at least for me, because somehow on the heels of Bev's death, it seemed extra-poignant, extra-powerful and extra-meaningful...'my chains are gone, I've been set free.'

Friday, September 21, 2007

A Tribute

Just a word of thanks to those of you who have offered prayers for my sweet friend Bev and her family when I've mentioned them these last few months. Bev passed away this afternoon and as much as I know I have bragged on her, her testimony and her brave fight against cancer, I wanted to share the e-mail her husband sent after her death....again, another testament to a life well lived and a God who is faithful.

Hello:
Bev passed away today (Friday) at about 4:30pm. All of our family was at her bedside and we witnessed the entire 23 Psalm and we saw Bev walk fearlessly through the valley of the shadow of death. An amazing wife, mom, friend and Mimi. We will follow-up quickly with funeral celebration plans. Her last words were "To God be the Glory!"

Thanks for all your prayers.........God is Good and Great!

Blessings on You

The picture above was taken one month ago when they were on an extended family vacation in Florida and looking at it now, God was SO good to give their family that time together. They did not know then that cancer had gotten to Bev's liver. I went to see her this past Monday and prints of this picture were by the door for visitors as a thanks for their (our) prayers through the years. I met Bev through another friend when I was 11 or 12 years old, then we grew to be friends as I became an adult as well. Little did I know as a child what an influence she would have on my life as an adult! God has been good to bless me with her friendship. She has left an amazing legacy and I am proud to count her as a friend.

I can only imagine what she must be experiencing now!

The Hunger Site
Bev's life is one of the many reasons I ask you to click this link often!

Monday, September 17, 2007

Inquiring minds want to know....

In comments from my last post regarding the Middle Name Meme, a couple of people asked my first name, so below is a repost from August 2006:


This is from the wedding I went to on Saturday night....the end of my busy week. It is a picture of my mom (on the right) and her friend Brenda, one of her best friends that I am named after. (The other person I am named after is Brenda's sister, Dianne....so I'm Brenda Dianne....cool, huh?) Anyway, it was a very nice wedding...absolutely HUGE, but very nice. Unfortunately Brenda's husband died last March, so the bride's nephew gave her away. That was both extremely sweet and sad at the same time....my sister didn't even need to look at me, she just passed the tissues! Good thing she knows me so well!

Anyway, my mom sent me this picture tonight, so I thought I would post it along with a funny story from when they were teenagers. My mom didn't have the best home life with my grandparents, so she spent LOADS of time with Brenda and her family growing up. One time when they were teenagers, before they could drive, they were in the car with Brenda's mom, Mrs Bowman and they asked her to drive by the house of this guy that was good looking and they sort of liked. Well, this guy lived in a cul-de-sac and was out in the yard cutting grass, so my mom and Brenda both hit the floorboard to hide so they wouldn't be seen as Mrs Bowman went down there to turn around. Brenda was yelling at her mom (rather anxiously!), "Just turn around....turn around mama!" So, here's what Mrs Bowman does...she rolls down the window and hollers, "David....DAVID....I have Brenda and Anna Jean over here hiding in the floorboard. They just wanted to drive by and say 'hey'!" Brenda is, in the meantime yelling at her mom, 'MAMA!!!......Just go!' If my memory serves me correctly, he came over and poked his head in the window and spoke to them! This story STILL makes me laugh to this day. Brenda's spirit is infectious and I just adore her, but with a mom like that, it is easy to see where that comes from! I was glad to get a chance to visit with Brenda and her mom last night. I asked my mom how old Mrs Bowman is now and my mom said she has to be at least 81 or so, but she still looks great, has a sharp mind and has her fantastic sense of humor. If I get a picture of her via e-mail, may post it too just because I love her and want to.

Are YOU named after anyone?

Saturday, September 15, 2007

An award, a meme and a prayer


I don't even know what to say to this. It's nice to get such an award from friends I haven't even met yet! I got this award on Monday from someone I have just recently learned reads my blog, Joan, then my friend Jean passed this award on to me on Tuesday. WOW! Who knew?? I have a hard time knowing WHAT to post sometimes, but to think that people actually smile and enjoy it....that is humbling! The idea is to pass it on to others who make ME smile, so I'm passing it on to Amy. Her blog is one that I randomly found and I loved her the minute I read she was a Donny Osmond fan too! I am also passing this award on to my friend Leanne although I know she has more on her plate than is humanly possible to cope with and may not have the time to pass it on. Just know Leanne that you are dear friend and that this award has been well-deserved. You've been an awesome friend these last several months.

Second, Tonja passed on a 'Middle Name Meme' to me this past Wednesday. The rules are as follows:

"You have to post these rules on your blog. Players, you must list one fact that is somehow relevant to your life for each letter of your middle name. If you do not have a middle name, choose one you would like to have. When tagged, write your own blog post containing your middle name facts. At the end, choose one person to tag for each letter of your middle name. Then leave them a comment telling them they have been tagged."

Of course, you would know my middle name is Dianne, so here goes:

D -- dog-gone tired right now!
I -- intrigued by the things God is putting my life these days
A -- always grateful for my nieces! :-)
N -- not perfect (ummm.....AMEN!)
N -- never too busy if a friend is in need (or I try not to be too busy anyway)
E -- empathetic (please notice 'EM' in front of 'pathetic'! :-) )

I am tagging Kat and my new friend Karen for this one, so 'you go girls!' and good luck! This one is kinda hard!

Lastly, I would ask you to pray for my friend Bev who I have mentioned from time to time on my blog. She is an AWESOME woman and someone I am honored and priviledged to count as a friend. She found out she had breast cancer what will be 7 years ago at the end of this month and while this cancer has gone to her uterus, lung, heart and bones through the years, it is now in her liver and her prognosis doesn't appear to be very good. God can do anything though and none of her family and friends are losing sight of that, but please say a prayer for her and her family if you read this and if they come to mind any other time. My heart is heavy for them, but Bev is a Christian as are her husband and children, so that is one major good thing. It's just difficult to think about. I know they would appreciate your prayers.

The Hunger Site

Thank you!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Let me just say....

I am not a political person, but this was evidently part of a Republican debate recently...and here's what I have to say about this...'WOW!' I LOVE his answers!

I'm lovin' this!

Market Place Moments: Appreciation, by Michele Howe


Jesus said to the woman, "Your faith has saved you; go in peace" (Luke 7:50 TNIV).

"The difference between appreciation and flattery? That is simple. One is sincere and the other insincere. One comes from the heart out; the other from the teeth out." (Dale Carnegie in "How to Win Friends and Influence People")

There is something wonderfully enigmatic about sensing that another person notices your efforts -- weak attempts though they may be -- and kindly expresses such recognition with even a single word of thankfulness. One paltry word, even? Yes. A mere word can make or break a person's spirit.

On any given day, individuals, young and old, from every life background have an inner, and frequently unidentified, hunger for a bit of expressed goodwill. Dale Carnegie knew this secret over fifty years ago and spent his life reminding others that all people have this need. It's a "craving" to receive validation for their accomplishments, their purpose, and their very person. Carnegie notes that, "... the rare individual who honestly satisfies this heart hunger will hold people in the palm of his or her hand."

Cynics may grouse that there's a fine line between appreciation and flattery or between affirmation and manipulation. Well, it isn't so. Flattery is simply verbal manipulation that benefits the speaker alone. The words may be true or not, that's not the point. Flattery is about the one speaking it and his or her gain, not about the person receiving a false or exaggerated compliment.

Cynics may grouse!

Appreciation runs deeper. It marks another's actions or attitudes and sees the benefit in the attempts ... no matter how insignificant. Real appreciation also alters both the speaker and the recipient, for the good. It spawns renewed vision, encourages continued efforts, and lights a fire for ongoing perseverance toward excellence.

Perhaps the most significant difference between flattery and appreciation is that one offers life in abundance while the other signals an inner death knell to the listener. People instinctively know if they're being schmoozed and it's always an ugly thing.

The question then is how to offer praise genuinely when someone is glaringly lacking from every visible vantage point. Again, wise and resourceful Carnegie offers this quote as a starting point for zeroing in on others' strengths, hidden though they might be: "Every man I meet is my superior in some way. In that, I learn of him" (Ralph Waldo Emerson). Wise words and utterly true.

In short, as we practice the art of identifying people's strengths and offer words of consistent appreciation, we will take part in their success. This will naturally spill over positively, affecting countless others. Today, begin focusing on the strong points of people and then commit to communicating daily sincere appreciation to all. These few powerful words, which cost us so little, will be treasured by the recipient long after we've forgotten them, and there's nothing insincere about it.

---------
(c) 2007 John Wiley & Sons, Inc. All rights reserved. Published
by Josey-Bass. A Wiley Imprint. 989 Market Street. San Fransisco,
CA 94104-174. www.joseybass.com

Tuesday, September 11, 2007

The whirlwind

I realize I have not cornered the market on being busy, but these last several days have just been a whirlwind of activity and I haven't even had time to check blogs, much less post anything!

After that Women of Purpose meeting last Thursday night (which is practically the last time I posted!), Friday and Saturday night, my friend Gina and I babysat three children for some friends that went away for a few days. They have a 3rd grader and a set of twins that are in first grade. I'm tellin' you, if you haven't spent 48 hours in that world, you don't know what you're missin'! Friday night was fine....we just ordered pizza, played, then Gina had bought some make-up for them, so we let them play around with all that. Bet you can't guess how long it took for them to want to do a makever on ME, huh? I haven't figured out how Gina got out unscathed! I was a sight to behold, trust me! She took a picture with her phone, but neither of us know how to download it. In the event we figure it out, I'll post it. No sense in my friends missing out on such a sight!

On Saturday, they all had football games to cheer at. The twins cheer for the same team, so we had to be there by 8:40 on Saturday morning. After that, we went to their house, let them change clothes, then we headed out for lunch and to the second game which we had to be at by 1:30. You would know that the second game went into overtime (!!), so we left there about 4:30 or so, made a quick stop by the store, came by here to check on my cat (she's spoiled and not used to me being away....although she hid under my bed and behind my washer while we were here because she's afraid of everyone), then we stopped by Wal-Mart for some Funny Foam for them to play with in the bathtub. They were playing with shaving cream the night before during the make-up event and I asked them if they'd ever had any Funny Foam. They said they hadn't, so I told Gina we had to find some Funny Foam on Saturday. Anyway, we got home, painted some Halloween masks their grandmother had bought for them, ate dinner, then it was time for bath....the Funny Foam was fabulous! Since they'd never seen or played with it, they were in heaven! After that, we watched a Disney movie, then it was time for bed. I slept like a rock!

Sunday, we got everyone up, fed and out the door to church. We were even there early, believe it or not, and we'd even gone by Gina's house to pick up her son and drove him through somewhere to get breakfast! It is amazing because when I have just me to get ready, I am borderline late, but when there are 3 kids involved, somehow it works! :-) Anyway, after lunch, we went back to their house and I gathered my stuff to leave because I had to be back at church by 5:00, so Gina took them swimming at her house before taking them back home and leaving them with their grandmother. I was so glad to get home after church Sunday night and just 'be.'

I got home last night and had a couple of projects I needed to work on for church, then it was almost time for bed. I have several things to get done tonight as well, but I wanted to just post a note so the few that read this wouldn't think I had dropped off the face of the earth! I enjoy being busy, but this last month has been kinda ridiculous!

(Don't forget to click......)
The Hunger Site

Monday, September 10, 2007

Dependence

"Lord, cause me to know the way in which I should walk, for I lift up my soul to You” (Psalm 143:8). I know that when I try to run the race without You, I get off course. Thank You that even if I become weak and stumble, You will help me to rise again and continue on. And though I can’t see exactly where I am going, I’m certain that You can and will enable me to get to where I need to be. Thank You, Lord, that You are teaching me how to walk in total dependence upon You, for I know therein lies my greatest blessing.

--JUST ENOUGH LIGHT FOR THE STEP I'M ON by Stormie Omartian

Thursday, September 06, 2007

Coffee cups

We had a wonderful Women of Purpose dinner meeting tonight to start getting things lined up for the luncheon we are having on November 10. It is going to be fabulous, but while we were finishing up dinner, coffee was being served and the talk turned to the great coffee cups that were used. It reminded me of this story I read before and I asked one of the friends I was sitting by, Michelle, if she'd ever heard or read this story about the coffee cups. She hadn't, so I told her I'd post it here. It was a good lesson the first time I read it, but it just gets better every time....probably because it's true!



Good Coffee
(Author Unknown)

A group of alumni, highly established in their careers, got together to visit their old university professor. Conversation soon turned into complaints about stress in work and life.

Offering his guests coffee, the professor went to the kitchen and returned with a large pot of coffee and an assortment of cups - porcelain, plastic, glass, crystal, some plain looking, some expensive, some exquisite - telling them to help themselves to the coffee.

When all the students had a cup of coffee in hand, the professor said: "If you noticed, all the nice looking expensive cups were taken up, leaving behind the plain and cheap ones. While it is normal for you to want only the best for yourselves, that is the source of your problems and stress.

Be assured that the cup itself adds no quality to the coffee. In most cases it is just more expensive and in some cases even hides what we drink. What all of you really wanted was coffee, not the cup, but you consciously went for the best cups... And then you began eyeing each other's cups.

Now consider this: Life is the coffee; the jobs, money and position in society are the cups. They are just tools to hold and contain Life, and the type of cup we have does not define, nor change the quality of Life we live.

Sometimes, by concentrating only on the cup, we fail to enjoy the coffee God has provided us. God brews the coffee, not the cups.......... Enjoy your coffee!"

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

My sidebar and a HUGE favor...

Once again, my friend Leanne had a great thing on her blog yesterday. It was a request to go to a website and click on a link to provide free mammograms for women who may not be able to afford it. I went there and they had icons that can be added so blog sidebars, so I picked one and added it to mine. The website is easy to get to, literally a click away using the link to your left, so I am asking anyone who reads this blog, any and every time you read it, to take a minute to go to this site. There is a 'Click here to give' button once you get there, so you can't miss it. I have a sweet friend who has been battling this disease for what will be 7 years at the end of this month. It has literally traveled all over her body and she's in the hospital even now battling this dreaded foe. With that being said, I know many of you have also been touched by this disease yourself or dealt with it through the life of a friend or family member. This cause is near and dear to my heart. We just can't do enough...but if 5 seconds of time can help to save a life, it's definitely worth it.

Look for this icon every day

The Hunger Site

and help save a life!

THANK YOU!

Monday, September 03, 2007

Trapper

There is absolutely ZERO worth to this post, it's just funny. This picture is OLD...I mean like probably 25 years old! His name is 'Trapper' and he's a cat I had when I still lived at home with my parents. He cracked me up and I had to take his picture when I saw him trying to get his own food out of the bag one day because we were bad parents. You can see his empty food pan sitting right there beside him! :-) I left him at my parents when I moved out and he lived to be about 18 years old. That's a long time for an outdoor cat! :-) He was a sweetie!

Anyway, I've spent the day cleaning out JUNK from this 'office' room that I have and this picture is above my radio in here...my current cat came in to check things out and I saw it when I picked her up to give her some love. It just made me laugh so I thought I'd post it. It's good for a giggle if nothing else!

If no one else is gonna feed ya, ya gotta feed yourself, huh?

Sunday, September 02, 2007

Lifesong

Okay...I couldn't bear to take the pictures of Kate off my blog yet, so I added them to my sidebar with a link. No telling how many pictures I may have over there by the time it's all said and done! I know I need to move on eventually though, so I might as well do it with something that is a blessing, huh? This is definitely it.

One of the talented young women in our youth group sang this song this morning in church. I had heard her sing it before on a Sunday night, so I was thrilled when I knew she'd be singing it again this morning. I wish there were some way for me to post her singing it. There's just not a way to do that, but it's definitely worth the the listen...

Lifesong, by Casting Crowns: