Thursday, April 17, 2014

Code of Silence

By Tim Shoemaker

I loved Below the Surface, (See, so much that I ordered Tim Shoemaker's other books. I was not disappointed. Code of Silence was even better. I loved it!

After three friends witness the robbery and beating of their friend and owner of their favorite hang out, they barely get away. The criminals wore masks and even cop pants. One of the boys was seen and almost caught by one of the criminals who threatened the boy and his family.

Because the criminals wore cop pants, the kids had no choice but to lay low because they didn't know who to trust or who to go to, especially if there were crooked cops involved. Not knowing who to trust led them to make a series of bad choices and continue to keep a code of silence.

Unfortunately, in trying to keep the code, it meant not telling the truth. With every lie, the web just got worse. The kids found themselves questioning their character and their friendships as they discovered more and more difficulties uncovered by each of their lies.

Heart-thumping. Page turner. Although it's about eighth graders, it's definitely a great read for kids of all ages. I will pass these books on to my grandchildren.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

I Give!

In judo and wrestling, the participant is taught to give a tap or double tap to signal your opponent that you give up.

The day after the big tax deadline was uncannily quiet. Maybe it was the impending snow storm, but after a few short hours, we gave. We closed the doors and went home. Just in time to shovel. I definitely felt like tapping on the clouds and yelling, "I give! No more snow. No more shoveling. I can't take any more!"

After faithfully nursing the onions, celery and avocados, tonight seemed like the night to toss them out in the snow. They no longer looked or smelled good. The outer celery roots were brown, rotten and had the stench of the worst rotten garbage ever. The outer onion skin had become dried and they were no longer growing.

Sometimes, we need to yield or surrender. It's good to confess that we can't take anymore. Because when we do, suddenly, it's as if an invisible arm reaches down and lifts us back up. Suddenly, we find new strength and are refortified to face yet another storm.

Faint? Overwhelmed? Weak? In anguish? Cry out! "I GIVE!"

Tuesday, April 15, 2014


Extra hours and stress are normal at a tax office, but overall, it's been peaceful. I know. I said that before. We've worked extra hours over the past several days. Better to stay late and stay on top of things. Better to come in early and take it as it comes.

Last day. This is the last eight hours. This is the deadline.

We will work hard today. Make the mail. Make the deadline and then, we will celebrate. My boss is taking us all out to dinner.

Yes, We are looking forward to the deadline.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Just Be!

After last week's Sunday Fun Day, in which I did 5 out of 10 of my top fun things to do on a Sunday, I had some thoughts like this:

Is it a more awesome Fun Day if I do more than half of my list?
Is it THE BEST EVER Fun Day if I do them all?

I guess that depends. And, it's not a competition. It's not a list to accomplish. It's only a list to choose from. Even if I only do one thing on the list. Since the number one rule is: NO STRESS, then, if trying to do them all produces stress, then it's better to just do one fun thing.

How about trying to do a different thing each week? And focusing on being totally in that one? Take for instance, sitting for awhile just doing nothing. Oh yeah. I know that one is going to be tough.

This morning during my morning writing session, I wrote: Oh Lord, it's tough to just be. Really? It would feel like taking space, like eating without working, like breathing without giving off oxygen. Oh dear. Help. How do we just be?

Like a kid. Have fun like a kid. And, then just be like a kid. Yes. Just be.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

What to Pray!

Have you ever found yourself surprised by something you prayed? Something that you had never given thought to before? But somehow it just came out of your mouth?

I had one of those experiences this morning? I prayed something specific for someone. It gave me pause. But the more I thought about it, the more excited I became. We know that God hears our prayers. We also know that when we pray in His will, that we can be confident that He will answer it. It's His own will.

This led me to ask for more specifics to pray. I don't assume to know His will until He makes it known. There are several situations and circumstances that I have prayed about, but it was kind of a duh moment when I realized that perhaps I hadn't asked specifically what His way to pray about them would be.

So, on this wonderful Sunday Fun Day, I pray that you are having fun and that you will be inspired to ask Him what to pray.