Heart Choices: 2014-02-02 -->

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Five Minute Friday: Write

It's Five Minute Friday when I link up with The Gypsy Mama.  We are given a one word writing prompt and get to write for five minutes flat. Our word for today is: WRITE.

I've been writing for years. It began as a young girl as I wrote in my diary with the tiny gold key.  I hid it under my window seat in my bedroom.  It was where I could pour out my thoughts and feelings with no one watching or listening.  Just me (and God).

I was chosen to attend a creative writing class during a summer between the fifth and sixth grades. Each day we had to write and stand up and read to our class. It was a wonderful learning experience for me to receive feedback.

For years I got so busy living life that I almost forgot about writing.  But then one day I purchased a journal and began to write once again.

I wrote about my everyday experiences when I was working with heart disease patients.  I walked with many families who lost their loved ones.  I didn't want to forget their stories so ...I wrote them down.

As I grew in my faith, I was learning and growing by leaps and bounds. I couldn't get enough of Bible studies and Christian books.  So I wrote down what I was learning.

I discovered blogging back in 2007 and have been writing on Heart Choices since that time.  I love writing.  I will continue writing.


Blessings and love,


My Secret Place

Where is my secret place?  In the past, I used to love to climb up the mountain behind my house.  All I had to do was to put on my hiking boots, grab my water and head out the door.  I was in great shape so the climb was vigorous but certainly doable.  I'd reach the summit and there I'd sit and look out over the valley of Phoenix I call home.

I always searched for the steeple of my church. I'd look out at the city landmarks in the distance.  And I would begin to pray for my city, for the people who lived in the homes below.  I knew one of my neighbors was fighting cancer so I'd bring her name before the Lord.  It was a time of solitude.  It was a time of reflection.

Usually on my quick (almost run) back down the mountain, I'd either be singing praise songs or writing a blog post in my head.  The words always came easily for me when I was alone on my mountain.

I'd return home and immediately sit down to write what was on my heart.  I could still see part of the mountain from my window and ...I loved it.

I no longer live here.  Life circumstances changed for me.  I was so sad about leaving.  In the midst of this sadness, I allowed the stresses of life to get the best of me at times.  I stopped exercising.  I indulged in too many sweets that really didn't satisfy. I ended up gaining about 15-20 pounds.  So now I'm trying to get back to those days when exercise was fun and I enjoyed hiking up  mountains.  I may not have such easy access to a mountain but I can do other things for exercise.

My quiet place is now at my computer.  I need to listen to soothing music more often.  I sometimes forget that I do have access to Pandora. I can easily exercise on my treadmill. On the weekends I can begin to hike up the mountains that are a short car drive from where I now live.  It may take time and effort to get back to the ease I used to climb but I know I can do it. Yes I can!

And I can take time to notice the beauty all around me. The roses in my front garden, the red geraniums I planted in my window box.  The amazing friend and sister in Christ who lives right next door to me.  How thankful God planted me right next to Caroline.  I need to take time to visit with her.

I'm linking up with Bonnie of Faith Barista for this jam.

Do you have a secret place?

Blessings and love,


Will You Join Me and Wear Red This Friday?

Did you know that Friday is Wear Red Day?  You may be thinking 'what is wear red day?'  Well, the American Heart Association launched Go Red for Women after research revealed that heart disease is the #1 killer of women.  Most people think it's cancer but it's not. Heart disease is usually thought of as a man's disease. But after menopause, heart disease risk is just as high for women.

Together we are powerful. Let's unite and get to the heart of good health.

The reason I'm wearing red on Friday and joining the cause is to raise awareness that ...heart disease is the #1 killer of women.

Red is actually my favorite color!

I come from a family history of heart disease.  My paternal grandfather died of a sudden heart attack. My dad had his first heart attack at the age of 61.  I remember the night I received the dreaded phone call and had to take an urgent flight to Florida.  They weren't sure if my dad would survive.  After open heart surgery, 13 angioplasties, a pacemaker and implantable defibrillator ...my dad is still alive and kicking at the age of 85.

It really hit me as I just celebrated my 61st birthday on February 1st; same age as my dad's first heart event!

I had open heart surgery as a child of seven. It was for a congenital heart defect but I was born in 1953 so surgical procedures were not what they are today.  But I survived and ...thrived!

Here's some exciting news!

I was invited by Ogilvy to be the February 12th Ambassador for the 28 Days to a Heart Health Challenge.  I'm going to be posting inspiring quotes for women on their Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest boards.

I need your help.

If you have any inspiring quotes about women and health or women and heart disease, please share them in the comments.  I want to include readers of Heart Choices in this endeavor.  Do you have any stories you care to share? I'd really love to hear them.

And don't forget to wear red on Friday!

Blessings and love,


Thankful For Birthday Blessings

The older I get, the less I look forward to birthdays. However, I've discovered that birthdays can be so much fun when you work with preschool children. They get so excited about their special day.  I received flowers, cards, candy, books and the infinity scarf I'm wearing in this photo.  (Thanks Heidi)

The kids always ask 'how old are you?'.  Since the previous day was Backwards Day, I said I was 16 years old.  One of the teachers later told me that a boy in her class said 'wow, that's so old'.  I guess it's a matter of perspective! :)

Although my birthday is actually February 1st, that's a Saturday.  So on Friday during our daily flag ceremony our entire preschool sang happy birthday to Miss Debbie.  I loved it and the kids were so cute and enthusiastic.  I wish I could show you their faces close up but ...

There's nothing quite like handmade cards from three and four year old children. My heart is so happy!

On Saturday morning (the actual day of my birth), Greg made me breakfast in bed. What a great start to the day!

I visited my good friends for a barbecue in their backyard. It was great to spend some time with old friends.  We ate and laughed and enjoyed our time together.

I continue to count my every day blessings ...

#1020 The sounds of little children singing happy birthday to me
#1021  The hugs from the kids
#1022  Phone calls from my family in Florida and California
#1023  An overwhelming number of Facebook birthday greetings
#1024  A barbecue at my good friends Jack and Anna May's house
#1025  Breakfast in bed
#1026  My favorite flavors of Girl Scout cookies from Vicki
#1027  Chocolate kisses
#1028  Hugs, hugs and more hugs

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

I leave you with this Jib Jab video my friend and co-worker created for me. I hope you get a laugh out of it.

Blessings and love,

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