Heart Choices: August 2014

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My Thoughts on Robin Williams

Image: Facebook
I was saddened and stunned by the news of Robin Williams' suicide. I remember the first time I saw him. It was on the TV show Mork & Mindy which broadcast in the late 70's and early 80's. I couldn't stop laughing.

I loved many of his movies including "Good Morning Vietnam", "Good Will Hunting", "Dead Poet's Society", "Patch Adams", "Awakenings", and "Mrs. Doubtfire". Not only was he a comedic genius but also a talented dramatic actor.

The brains of genius talents like Robin Williams seem to be ten steps ahead of the rest of us.

After hearing the sad news of his death, I read and watched much of the coverage on TV and online. One of my high school friends wrote this on Facebook:

Dennis Benatar
Goodbye Mr Williams

A night in mid to late 1970's...at a place called "Catch a Rising Star".... Names like Richard Belzer, Jerry Seinfeld, Larry David, Pat Benatar weren't known yet and were there, then this guy from "Mork and Mindy" walks in to try out his "Carson Show" bit..... one and a half hours later... sides splitting, stomachs aching, Robin leaves the stage. 11 years later on the set of "Awakenings," this time an impromptu, side-splitting, stomach-aching 15 minutes about the sale of Columbia Pictures to Sony. Our paths crossed a number of times.... You are sorely missed by all of us you touched. Goodbye Robin.

He wasn't much older than me.

I don't understand the deep depression that he experienced.

But I know there are a few takeaways for me from his tragic death.

I want to:
  • Enjoy the moments
  • Offer words of encouragement to others
  • Write notes of appreciation
  • Tell those I love what they mean to me
  • Never go to bed angry
  • Remember that this life is short
  • Pay attention when a friend is hurting
  • Never be too busy to listen
  • Live a life of love

Blessings and love,


New Beginnings and Saying Goodbye

A new school year is about to begin. A new crop of students. I love to get to know them but ...I have a hard time letting go of the past year.

I will be starting this school year without Heidi. We worked together for four years and got to the point where we could almost finish one another's sentences. Oh how I will miss her!
Jane's photo: the Mom
And then there are the children from last year. How thankful I am that most of them are still attending our school for Pre-K 4. So I will be able to see their sweet faces from time to time. And they can always stop by for hugs from Miss Debbie.
I spent the entire summer working on our campus this year. Summer camp was exciting and fun. Our mascot Ozzie was such a hit with the children who clamored around him for fist bumps and a few hugs. Some of the children will be attending our school but I had to say goodbye to many.
To get to work with children has been such a gift. During a season of much loss in my life, it's been a place of comfort and love. Children are so open. They express love so easily.
So as I say goodbye to the past, I must say hello to new beginnings. I get to work with many new teachers. Already I'm hearing new ideas. I sense excitement and enthusiasm.
And I'm sure I'll be sharing more about Mandie in the coming months. We will be comrades as we work together with the little ones this school year.

I will be continuing to count my many blessings. This always helps me to focus on what's good and what's right.

#1077 Getting to see many of the students from previous years
#1078 Meeting new students
#1079 Getting to know Mandie
#1080 The opportunity to help market our summer camp on Facebook
#1081 Having more time to finally get back to working on my book
#1082 An end to a successful summer camp
#1083 All of the children were safe as they swam in the pool this summer
#1084 Meeting new co-workers
#1085 A good pastor friend George came through a life threatening situation and is now home recovering.
#1086 I am exercising.
#1087 I lost weight this summer.
#1088 I can fit into some of my smaller sizes I had packed away.
#1089 The power or prayer
#1090 Faithful friends
#1091 Inspiring sermons each Sunday at my church
#1092 Talking to my dad each weekend

I'm linking up with Ann of A Holy Experience for Multitudes on Mondays.

Blessings and love,


Five Minute Friday: Fill

It's Five Minute Friday when we set our timers and get to write for five minutes flat. Our word for today is: FILL.


As I consider the word fill, much comes to my mind. I tend to fill my life with many things. In this age of technology:

  • I can fill my time shopping without leaving my home. 
  • I can look at beautiful images on Pinterest and dream of places I long to visit and things I long to buy.
  • I can fill my time listening to music.
  • I can exercise while reading my Kindle.
  • I can fill my time keeping up with my friends and family on Facebook.
I'm amazed at how much time elapses as I fill my mind and life with so many things. Not all of these things are bad. Many of these things are good. But when I consider what truly satisfies me, it's not in shopping or dreaming.

I recall a quote I read by Blaise Pascal:
There is a God shaped vacuum in the heart of every man that cannot be filled by any created thing, but only by God, the Creator, made known through Jesus.

That's what I want to be filled with; Jesus. I want to saturate myself in His Word. I want to be filled to overflowing with His love. And then I want to go out into the world filled with His love to share with others.

How about you? What are filling yourself with? Is it satisfying?


I'm linking up with Kate Motaung who is now hosting Five Minute Friday.

Blessings and love,


How to Survive 10 Weeks of Summer Camp

I survived and thrived ten weeks of summer camp. I worked 10-11 hour days with no break. The camp counselors and I ate all our meals with the campers. We were constantly engaged with them. No rest for the weary!

So how does a woman of 61 have the energy to keep up? So glad you asked!

  • Every morning I woke up very early anticipating the day. I set my alarm clock for 5 am as a backup but I never had to wait as I always awakened earlier. 
  • I thanked the Lord for the day. I committed to not read or engage on social media until after my quiet time. I have YouVersion one year Bible downloaded on my Kindle. I prayed and asked for safety for the campers and strength for the day.
  • When my dad visited a few months ago, he shared something that had given him lots of energy. He is 85 years old with many heart issues but continues to be energetic with such a positive outlook on life. He was taking All Day Energy Greens; a green powder. He adds one scoop to a drink each morning. So I tried it. I don't know if it's the power of suggestion or what but ...I've had much more energy. And by the way, I'm not an affiliate promoter of this product.  But I do think my dad should be. :)
  • I enjoyed the moments watching the campers have fun. As the site leader, I was in charge of the day to day operations. But I made a decision to also enjoy the children. Seeing their faces filled with excitement the first time they met Ozzie our camp mascot was priceless! 
  • I captured many of these precious moments with my camera. I took about 2,000 photos during our 10 week camp. I posted many of them to our Rancho Solano Summer Camps Facebook page. 
  • I went to bed early each night. In fact, I pretty much crashed by 8:30 or 9 according to my husband. 

I've forfeited much writing and reading time this summer. However, I'm anxious to get back to blogging regularly and visiting your blogs. I have one week off before starting back to work full time again.

I just want to add that I feel so blessed to have been entrusted with the role of Site Leader for our summer camp. It has been an adventure and a privilege to get to meet new people and spend time with the campers.

Blessings and love,

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