Our Week with Wally

April 8th, 2013

Last week was an adventure in the Sibley household.  It started out to be a challenging week as I was just feeling better after two full weeks of being down with a nasty virus and nowhere near 100% yet,  and the Rocket Scientist woke up Monday morning with a seeminlgy different, but equally wicked nasty virus.  It was Release Week at TE which is always particularly busy for me in combination with my job in the church office.

Then Tuesday morning, as I headed out the door to work while hubby was sick in bed, as I got to my car in the driveway I thought I saw a dog’s tail under our 5th wheel trailer.  I walked around and around the trailer until I finally saw this dirty white dog hiding under there.  Oh my!  If you know me at all, you know I try to resscue every stray dog I ever see.  You know this is how we ended up with both Tessa and then Roger.

This is not the first stray dog I’ve found in my front yard as we live on a fairly major street.  I went in the house to get some food and water, knowing that there would be a good chance he would be gone by the time I got back which is what usually happens.  Only he wasn’t.  He was right there under the trailer looking so pitiful. I put the bowls down, spoke softly and stepped back.  He did come out tentativley and the wolf down the food and gulp down some water.  Now what?

I picked up the dishes and told him to follow me, that I would get him some more.  I spoke sweetly and coaxingly and he did…he followed me into the backyard.  I got him some more food and a towel to lay on.  I went in and told the Rocket Scientist that we had a stray dog in our backyard, so not to let our dogs out and that I would figure something out when I came home for lunch.  I’d have a plan.  And I left for work.

I came home for lunch…still no plan.  The pup was a sweetie pie, but very lethargic and oh so filthy dirty.  I changed my clothes – into some old jeans and t-shirt – and ran him down to the vet on the corner to check for a chip (he had no collar)…but no chip.  Brought him home and decided he really had to have a bath immediately.  Curt helped me.  He’s much bigger than our dogs at 20 pounds and stands so tall!  Here he is after the bath – still quite dirty.

We were guessing he was a cockapoo or something similar.  His curly coat had been very badly/unevenly cut off with scissors/shears and his skin had been nicked in a couple of places.  His ears and tail were matted.  And…well…let’s just say, he was a mess!

We brought him in to stay in our laundry room with a blanket and plenty of food and water.  We introduced him to Tessa and Roger.  Suffice it to say, they were less than thrilled.  We put signs up at Petco and some groomers and some vet offices.  I was planning to do a lot more when I got off work at 1:00 on Thursday.  We also registered him on some on-line lost dog websites. We spent as much time with him as we could.  He was a love sponge!  He wanted to cuddle like crazy!  And by the second day, he started to be very playful as well.  Yep, Tessa and Roger were NOT thrilled.

At some point, we began calling him Wally.  We had to call him something.  Wally is a name that goes back many years among Curt’s buddies and I think that Curt just called him that and it immediately stuck.  He learned his name in a couple of days.

On Wednesday I called around to find a groomer I could take him to and I got him a Thursday afternoon appointment at Your Elegant Pet in Lakewood.  I had not been there before, but they had excellent Yelp reviews and had an open appointment time.  Oh my goodness! Christy, the groomer, did such a wonderful job on him.  He was like a comepletely different dog!

 

BEFORE:

 

AFTER:

Is he a cutie or what?  By this time we decided that he had NOT been well-cared-for and there wasn’t much point in putting a huge effort forth to find his owners.  Rather, we felt that we should find him a new forever family ASAP.

At this point, I want to say that I felt very strongly that the Lord brought Wally to us for a reason.  I didn’t find him somewhere on the street and coax him into my car.  He was in our front yard, under our RV.  {And in fact, Curt had seen him on Monday afternoon when he came home from work sick in the middle of the day.  He though he saw a dog when he pulled into the driveway, but couldn’t find him when he got out of his truck and looked.  We now realize Wally was hiding behind our old motorhome at that point.}  I knew with all my heart that the Lord had a family waiting for Wally. I prayed that the Lord would guide us to them and that He would please do it quickly.  While Curt and I never once considered keeping Wally, I knew that the longer we had him the harder it would be to let him go.  Also, did I mention that Tessa and Roger were NOT thrilled with this situation?  There was tension in the house.  So, as blessed and privileged as I felt to be caring for Wally, I knew finding his family sooner rather than later would be for the best.

I’m really not sure why the Lord brings stray dogs to us, but it is a blessing. {One of our friends at church yesterday was joking that we must have a secret mark on our house like the old underground railroad houses had, but in this case only the dogs know about it!} It was so wonderful to see this guy transform.  It breaks my heart to think of what he might have gone through, but just look at him now!  He’s going to bring so much joy to someone!

On Friday morning, I sent an e-mail blast to practically everyone I know and I posted on Facebook as well.  I included photos and gave all the details I could.  I asked people to forward Wally’s info to everyone they could think of.  I knew, without doubt, that there was a family waiting for him.  I said a prayer as I hit the send key.  Less than 10 minutes later, I got a response from my Mom that said “you have a taker”.  She followed that up by forwarding me the response she had gotten from a co-worker that said “YES! When can we go get him?”  Happy Dance!  Praise God for answered prayer!  Amazing answered prayer!

I called Debi, Wally’s new Mom. immediately and set up a time for her to come on Saturday to get Wally.  Just a few minutes after we hung up, my Mom e-mailed again to say that they had already set up a vet appointment for shots on Sunday.  Yep – this was Wally’s family for sure!

I asked my Mom – is this the same lady that wanted Roger?  Yes, it is.  Oh my!  You may recall that we found Roger on a Saturday.  I think on Monday or Tuesday we began trying to find a home for him.  Debi wanted him, but couldn’t come until the following Saturday.  We had a time set up.  On Friday night, we decided we couldn’t part with Roger, that he must stay with us, and I called Debi and canceled the appointment.  We felt so bad, but she was very understanding.  And now, a year and a half later, she was coming to get her pup from us.  WOW!

I made a grooming appointment for Roger and Tessa, so they wouldn’t be here when Wally met his new family.  Debi came and brought her daughter Arianna.  As soon as they came in the front door, Wally went right to them.  They stayed for a little while and Wally was happy as could be.

They are dog-people.  They thought Wally was the perfect size!  They were so happy!  My heart swelled with joy!

I got a text from Debi yesterday that the vet agreed that Wally is probably a cockapoo and that she estimated his age to be between 1 and 1-1/2 which is kind of what I had been guessing.  They are enjoying him so much!

So, yes our week was an adventure.  It was a challenge in many ways.  It was a joy.  It was stressful, but  I had the constant sense that the Lord had a purpose in it (as He always does) even if I wasn’t sure what the purpose was.  Saturday afternoon our little family was exhausted and all crashed out…but oh so content and happy.

I know this was a long post.  If you got through the whole thing, thanks for sticking with it and going on the adventure with me.  And now it’s Monday and a there’s a whole new week ahead!

  One week ago today was my 50th birthday and we celebrated with a BIG wonderful party!  I have a bunch of photos and will be getting more from several friends over the next few days, so I thought I’d share a few of them with you today. 

 Last week was quite a week!  The excitement started on Saturday the 28th as I headed out to Anaheim to meet up with Taylor, Melody, Regina, and Wanda for CHA.  Both Sunday and Monday were spent on the convention floor, with dinners with very special women each evening.  Tuesday I was home to get back on track with all the final party details – and boy was there a lot to do!  Fortunately I had a ton of help from both local friends and from two very dear friends from out of state.  We worked all week long to insure a good time would be had by all!

Oh and just to make things even a little more interesting, the Rocket Scientist had lithotripsy on Thursday to have 2 GIANT kidney stones blasted.  Poor guy had to have a stent put in and the recovery has not been nearly as easy as he had been led to believe.  There was some doubt if he would even make it to the party, but fortunatley he did make it and did well most of the evening.  He had to be taken home just a little while before things ended.

The theme of the party was “Life is Sweet” and the colors were black and white, fucshia and pink. Guests were invited to enjoy decadent desserts and live music.  Here are the favors that were set at each place.

Thes cute little jars (from Specialty Bottle) were filled with pink and white taffy and I had custom stickers printed with my party logo for a personal touch.  As guests walked in they were greeted by my sweet friends Lisa and Lori and they could find their table assignment on this poster. (Papers are Echo Park Be Mine Collection and that was the jumping off point for all the party decor.)

Tables were indicated by a number as well as different photos of me throughout my life.  Some people expressed surprised at having table assignments, but when I host a party I’m all about doing everything possible to make sure guests have fun.  I think part of that is making sure people will get to sit with people they know or people they will be likely to enjoy.  (No one who knows me is surprised that I’m a bit of a control freak!  LOL!)  Here’s what the tables looked like. 

I couldn’t have been more thrilled with how everything looked.  It was really stunning!  We had two dessert stations serving crepes and ice cream sundaes over warm cookies or brownies, plus there were mini cupcakes.  My one party regret is that I never got even one cupcake!  I heard they were yummy though!

We had a photo booth set up where people could get their pictures taken for my guest book.  They could go serious or silly or both.  It was a HUGE hit!

There was a live band called The Balcony Boys and they were awesome!  Everyone loved them!  Curt and I found them playing out on an apartment balcony in Seal Beach last Summer.  I hadn’t origianlly planned to have a dance floor, but decided a week before the party to add one and I’m so glad I did.  More people got up and danced than I had expected.  You know, I managed the Long Beach Arthur Murray Studio in my 20’s and have been missing dancing quite a bit.  My BFF, Ruth, worked there with me as well and we got up and danced a few songs together at the party.  What a blast, despite the fact that we both had trouble remebering the man’s part to lead.  LOL!

We called up everyone at the party that will turn 50 this year and had a special toast.  I’ve known some of these girls since elementary school or Jr. High.

Here I am with my nieces Kira and Britta and their mom Lill.

Here are some very special friends Lisa, Stephanie and Darla. 

And sweet friends Lori Craig and Taylor VanBruggen who I’m sure all of my blog readers know well!  What a blessing to have them here from Missouri and Iowa.  Taylor gave me an incredible gift that I didn’t get to open till the next day.  It included handmade cards from over 25 different “internet friends”.  It was so amazing to open each one of them.  I haven’t had a chance to thank each person, but please know that if you sent a card, I love it and appreciate it and am so grateful!

My BFF since high school came down from Vancouver, WA.  She and her hubby stayed in SoCal for almost a week and it was wonderful to spend time with them.

All in all we had about 90 guests come from every realm of my life to help me celebrate the BEST BIRTHDAY EVER!  There are lots more photos and maybe I’ll share some more next week. (I’m hoping someone has a good one of Curt and I together.) From everyone at the party, to everyone who sent cards, to everyone who left me birthday wishes on Facebook – THANK YOU! And a huge thank you to my Uncle Bernie and my Mom and Dad for hosting this big shindig and to the friends on my “Party Planning Committee” who worked tirelessly and kept me sane! It’s been a week and I’m almost recovered. I feel so loved and so special and so happy and so BLESSED!!!!  Really really so BLESSED!  Who knew 50 could be so fabulous???

End of an Era

January 11th, 2012

I know I promised to blog more regularly and here it is Wednesday evening and I haven’t posted anything since Friday. I actually have 2 cards ready to share, but just haven’t had the time as this has been a crazy week.  This is a NSR post as it was my last day at California Billing Specialists where I’ve worked for over 18 years and I just feel the need to write a bit. 

CBS is a medical billing company that is owned by my Mom and her business partner, Carol.  When they brought me in, so many years ago I didn’t even know what an EOB was. (That’s Explanation of Benefits – insurance statement – the most basic document in the industry.)  The company only had 3 employees when I started.  I learned the ins and outs of insurance and patient collections and as the company grew I became the Collection Supervisor.

A few years ago when my Aunt was seriously ill (and subsequently passed away), I cut back to working just one day a week.  Somehow I just never went back to a regular full-time schedule and eventually I took on my part time position with Taylored Expressions and worked both jobs.  CBS has been a security blanket for me.  It was a godsend when our family went through several tumultous years of illness and loss.  It’s a company where everyone is hired in because they are a friend or relative of someone already there.  It’s been a place where I can go in and sit at my desk and know the answers to almost all the questions I’m asked, where I can enjoy the company of those I work with, and where I can take pride in what we accomplish for our clients.

So, why would I leave?  The Lord presented an opportunity that I just couldn’t refuse.  I’ve been asked to take the position of Office Manager and Administrative Assistant to the Senior Pastor at our church as the Office Manager of 28 years prepares to retire.  I was completely stunned when I was asked, and the Lord so graciously made it clear to me through so many confirmations.  He knows I do not gravitate toward change, no matter how good it might sound, and He knew that I would need the path to be incredibly and totally clear to take this leap of faith.

I will be working at Bethel Grace 4 days a week (2 full half days and 2 full days) starting in mid-March and I will contiue working for TE from home.  It will be a huge adjustment, but I know it will be great!

I’m thankful and excited for what’s to come in the next couple of months, so today was a bittersweet day.  To be totally honest it was more difficult than I imagined as I cleaned out my desk and found all of my time sheets going back to 1996 – WOW!  My Mom has been an awesome boss and so gracious and supportive about my moving on.

I wanted to share a few photos taken at our office Christmas Party last month.  Unfortunately my Mom wasn’t there, as she now works in a different job while still owning CBS.  But my Dad is in these pictures – I told you the business is a family affair!  I will miss seeing him weekly.

And here I am with the 3 of the Collectors that work in my department – Jessica, Yoly and Sarah.  Yoly and I have been friends for over 15 years and she is the one taking over my position.  I know she’ll be great!

Here’s everyone –

Thanks for letting me just share my heart this evening.  I promise I’ll be back soon with those two cards.  I hope you are having a great week!

Late Grad Wishes

July 6th, 2011

Happy Wednesday!  Did you have a good 4th of July weekend?  We sure did!  This is the first chance I’ve had to post even though I did get some good stampng time in.  The card I have today is for a high school graduation for a guy, so I kept it simple in his school colors.

I used TE Dream Big to create a tent topper card.   Patterned paper is from the MME 6×6 Stella and Rose – Hattie pad.  I’ve found that paper collection great for masculine cards as well as other things.  I actually bought it because it was somewhat out of my norm.  I wasn’t sure how much I would use it, but it’s been great to have!  The little stars are from the TE Star Border Die.  I was originally going to use a star border, but it didn’t quite work.  The little stars were the perfect little touch though.  Each one has a tiny red rhinestone on it too.  I used the silver end of a Zig Painty Pen to line the edges of the card and the edges of the red cardstock strip under the numbers.  It gives a really nice finished look.  Now I just need to get this in the mail – it’s already quite late.

Since the Rocket Scientist works a 9/80 and has every other Friday off work, we were very fortunate to have a 4 day weekend.  We started it off by going out to dinner and to see Super 8 Thursday night.  I didn’t know much about the movie before seeing it ( I like it that way) and I really really loved it!  Two thumbs way up!

Friday we did something different and fun.  We drove a half hour to have lunch at a food truck!  It wasn’t just any truck though, it was Nom Nom – the truck that came in 2nd place (should have won) the Food Network Truck Wars last year.  We’ve wanted to track them down ever since the show and we finally did.  OH.MY.HEAVENS. Best sandwich EVER.  The Banh Mi was like nothing I had ever tasted before.  YUM!   We’ll be tracking them down again for sure.    Then Friday afternoon and evening I went through the very painful process of cleaning up my stamp room so I could have a friend over to stamp on Saturday.  UGH!  I got a lot accomplished and it looks and feels so much better in there…for now…you know how that goes!

I got to stamp with my friend Lisa all afternoon Saturday and then Curt and I went to an art show Saturday night.  My brother-in-law had some pieces on display which was really cool.  And we discovered an artist that we were unaware of (but many of our friends already knew about), Shag.  We loved that show so much we almost bought a piece…we just couldn’t figure out anywhere to put it.  Oh and just by coincidence that night we happened on yet another food truck from the Food Network contest – Crepes Bonaparte – so we had a little dessert there.

Sunday was a wonderful day at church and visiting with some friends.  We decided to stay home for 4th of July this year and my wonderful hubby went to the store and got everything to make us a yummy steak dinner.  That was topped off by a trip to Baskin Robbins.  OH MY!  GREAT weekend and time to get back on that Weight Watchers bandwagon for sure!

I have more projects to share – just need to find the time to sit down and blog them!  I’ll try to get back tomorrow.  I hope you’re having a good week!  Thanks for stopping by!

Baby Card and more…

January 24th, 2011

Happy Monday!  Our weekend was so incredibly jam-packed busy that I really need a day of rest! But that’s not going to happen since CHA starts on Saturday and I have a ton of things to do before heading out to L.A. for 3 days.  CHA is the Craft and Hobby Assocation Trade Show and I get to go with Taylored Expressions and walk the show looking for the newest and most awesome  papercrafting products to stock in the TE Store, plus hook up with stamping friends from across the country! (If you’re going to be there, please let me know!) One of those sweet friends is coming into town on Thursday and I’m excited to spend some time with her before the craziness of the show starts.

Today I want to share a sweet baby card I made for a friend who is just about 3 weeks away from her due date to deliver her 3rd little boy!  I’ve never had a lot of baby stamps and my current go-to set isn’t totally a baby set – Hangin’ Out from Taylored Expressions.  I do love the possibilities with this set for baby and lots of other things as well. (Click on photos to see them larger.)

I was excited when I had the idea to use the Heart Border Die from TE as the clothesline!  Cute, huh?  I used the Cosmo Cricket Circa 1935 Mini Deck for a vintage-y feel and kept the card really simple – just paper-pieced the elements and added a litle copic shading.

 

One of our big activites this weekend was getting my parents’ 38-foot 5th wheel trailer out of storage and bringing it to our house to live.  Curt is still working on building gates and a gravel pad for it to sit on at the side of our house, but it’s on our front lawn for now.  We’ll be getting rid of our motorhome soon.  I love our motorhome and will be really sad to see it go, but this trailer is much newer and much bigger and it’s a win-win for us to be able to use it and for my parents to not have to pay storage fees.  It has 3 slide-outs and when they are all popped out, it’s REALLY BIG!  Here are a few photos we took yesterday afternoon after getting the interior cleaned (it’s amazing how dirty stuff gets just sitting in storage!)

This is a view of the back half of the coach with both slide-outs popped out.

Here’s the kitchen.  Sofa is in one of the slide-outs.

Dining table is across from the kitchen.  Photo taken from the sofa.

Full-sized stand up shower.  The bathroom is quite large and there is a separate small water closet.  This is quite different from our motorhome!  I didn’t get any bedroom pictures yet because I still need to get the bed made up.  We’re just really excited that you can walk around the bed and not be snugged up against a wall, so Curt won’t have to climb over me to get out!  We need to start planning a little trip soon to figure out how everything works!  Anyone in SoCal have any suggestions as to where we should go first?   Here’s my criteria for the first trip: within a few hours drive, full hook-ups of course, dog-friendly, pretty area.  Let me know if you have ideas!

Well, I’ve got to run and get busy before my to-do list chokes me!  Thanks for stopping by!  Have a great day!

See Beyond

August 30th, 2010

Happy Monday!  It’s been a rough week or so and I wanted to stop in to let you know what’s been going on here as well as to share a card.  The card I have today is actually from one of my classes a month or two ago, but I realized I had never photographed or posted it.  It features the TE stamp set Discover Your Wings and the technique of 3D stamping.

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And now to share a little of what has been going on this past week.  Friday before last (the last day I blogged) I taught a stamp class and Curt went for a 20 mile bike ride with some buddies.  He’s been going 3 or 4 times a week as we are both trying to get excerise and lose some weight.  Earlier in the week he had developed a little bump/cyst/boil on his…hmmm…how do I put this…on his “seat”.  He didn’t think much of it until after the Friday night bike ride when it hurt like heck.  Friday night he was exhasuted from the ride and just didn’t recover as he usually does and then he had chills all night.  The next day he had an all day choir rehearsal (they start working on the Christmas musical in August) and a friend and I were scheduled to coordinate the catered lunch.  About an hour into the rehearsal Curt came and found me in the kitchen to tell me he was in so much pain that he couldn’t sit in the rehearsal.  He was white as a sheet and his face felt really hot.  He dediced to go to Urgent Care and insisted he could drive himself so I could stay at church and tend to the lunch.

It turned out that the boil had become infected and had in fact caused a blood infection which is very serious. He had a fever of 102.  The doctor lanced the boil, gave him a shot of antibiotics and a prescription for an oral antibiotic.  He was instructed to return the follow day, but told that he should head straight to the E.R. if his symptoms worsened or his fever didn’t break.  When we returned the next day he was seen by a different doctor who gave him another shot and added another oral antibiotic.  This doctor told us that he would have admitted him to the hospital the day before if it had been up to him.  Again we were instructed in no uncertain terms to head to the E.R. if there was worsened swelling ot if his fever went up again.   On Tuesday we saw our regular doctor and at that point there were some results from the labs done over the weekend.  The infection was staph and our doctor told us that it was the kind of thing that is NOT treated orally – that he should have been in the hospital with an IV.  At that point we did not know whether the infection was antibiotic-resistant or not, but there was a good chance that it might be.  We were scheduled back to see our doctor on Thursday.  Once again we were told that Curt might still need to be admitted and that we should call the doctor any time of day or night if symptoms worsened.  On Thursday we got the good news that the specific bacteria he was fighting was NOT resistant and he seemed to be responding to treatment.  On Friday Curt felt like he had turned a corner and was starting to feel better.  On Sunday we were able to attend church.

Curt went back to the doctor this morning and was given the ok to go to work this afternoon.  He still has some infection and the doctor prescribed additional antibiotics, but he is feeling better for the most part.  For a week we both lived with the knowledge that this situation could become life threatening at any moment.  Sometimes I felt like I was holding my breath.  But I knew the Lord was upholding us and would see us through whatever might come.

For the entire week we were bathed in prayer and were awash in the good wishes we received via phone, e-mail and FaceBook.  I really can’t describe how much that meant to both of us.  When we returned to church on Sunday, the smiles and the hugs and the genuine concern was amazingly sweet and truly warmed my heart.  I am so thankful to the Lord for bringing us through this – so thankful that it wasn’t worse – so thankful that Curt had that horrible pain that motivated him to get medical attention – so thankful for the people God surrounded us with.

It is truly a happy Monday at our house!

Tomorrow begins sneak peeks for the September release at Taylored Expressions and I’ll be playing along.  On Tuesday we’ll be peeking some stamps that I concepted and am especially excited about.  This will be a huge release at TE celebrates its 2nd birthday and it’s an awesome one.  You won’t want to miss a thing!  Hope to see you back tomorrow!

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The Teacup and The Potter

April 6th, 2010

I’ll have another post up in just a few minutes with some sneak peeks for the upcoming release of new stamp sets at Taylored Expressions.  One of my projects in that post is a Tea-themed journal and I wanted to share the story I will be tea-cup-april-10-custom.jpgprinting out and attaching to the inside cover of that journal.  I received this story in an e-mail last week and I found it really touching.  I wanted to pass it along to a friend who is on the committe at church to plan the annual Ladies’ Tea and I thought a little journal would make a great gift.  I hope you have a few minutes to read this little story all the way through…

There was a couple who took a trip to England to shop in a beautiful antique store to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary. They both liked antiques and pottery, and especially teacups. Spotting an exceptional cup, they asked, “May we see that? We’ve never seen a cup quite so beautiful.”

As the lady handed it to them, suddenly the teacup spoke, “You don’t understand. I have not always been a teacup. There was a time when I was just a lump of red clay. My master took me and rolled me, pounded and patted me over and over and I yelled out, “Don’t do that. “I don’t like it! Leave me alone,” but he only smiled, and gently said, “Not yet!”

Then WHAM! I was placed on a spinning wheel and suddenly I was spun around and around and around. “Stop it! I’m getting so dizzy! I’m going to be sick!,” I screamed. But the master only nodded and said quietly. ‘Not yet.’

He spun me and poked and prodded and bent me out of shape to suit himself and then he put me in the oven. I never felt such heat.. I yelled and knocked and pounded at the door. “Help! Get me out of here!” I could see him through the opening and I could read his lips as he shook his head from side to side, ‘Not yet’.

When I thought I couldn’t bear it another minute, the door opened. He carefully took me out and put me on the shelf, and I began to cool. Oh, that felt so good! “Ah, this is much better,” I thought. But after I cooled he picked me up and he brushed and painted me all over. The fumes were horrible. I thought I would gag. “Oh, please, stop it, stop,” I cried. He only shook his head and said. ‘Not yet!’.

Then suddenly he put me back in to the oven. Only it was not like the first one.. This was twice as hot and I just knew I would suffocate. I begged. I pleaded. I screamed. I cried. I was convinced I would never make it. I was ready to give up. Just then the door opened and he took me out and again placed me on the shelf where I cooled and waited and waited, wondering “What’s he going to do to me next?”

An hour later he handed me a mirror and said ‘Look at yourself.’ And I did. I said, “That’s not me; that couldn’t be me. It’s beautiful. I’m beautiful!!!”

Quietly he spoke: ‘I want you to remember, then,’ he said, ‘I know it hurt to be rolled and pounded and patted, but had I just left you alone, you’d have dried up. I know it made you dizzy to spin around on the wheel, but if I had stopped, you would have crumbled. I know it hurt and it was hot and disagreeable in the oven, but if I hadn’t put you there, you would have cracked. I know the fumes were bad when I brushed and painted you all over, but if I hadn’t done that, you never would have hardened. You would not have had any color in your life. If I hadn’t put you back in that second oven, you wouldn’t have survived for long because the hardness would not have held. Now you are a finished product. Now you are what I had in mind when I first began with you.’

The moral of this story is this:

God knows what He’s doing for each of us. He is the potter, and we are His clay. He will mold us and make us and expose us to just enough pressures of just the right kinds that we may be made into a flawless piece of work to fulfill His good, pleasing and perfect will.

So when life seems hard, and you are being pounded and patted and pushed almost beyond endurance; when your world seems to be spinning out of control; when you feel like you are in a fiery furnace of trials; when life seems to “stink”, try this:

Brew a cup of your favorite tea in your prettiest tea cup, sit down and think on this story and then, have a little talk with the Potter.

Thanks for stopping by.  Please see my next post to see the Tea Journal along with a card sample.

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