Thursday, April 28, 2005


This post may end up being a bit scattered and disjointed. My thoughts are all over the place tonight...

I'm so glad it's Thursday...'cause I don't work tomorrow, and this week has seemed long enough already. I don't exactly know why it has seemed long, but it has. And I'm sooo looking forward to husband is taking me on a date (that HE has planned)! I love dates!! Some friends filled out some of those email surveys about me this week and several of them filled that in (having a date with Les) for the question on my favourite things to do. Either (a) they know me so well or (b) I don't hide this fact very well...probably both:) I found all their answers so encouraging...thank God for good friends:)

I bumped into my mom in the grocery store the other night. I was picking up some yogurt. She kept telling me to buy what they were buying. I explained that this was what we like and that it was on sale too. She still kept telling me to buy what she was buying. Then she did something that after all these years I shouldn't be surprised about...just before the checkout, she gave me some money for my birthday. Now my birthday isn't until mid-June. so I graciously tried to decline...telling her that it was only April...but there it was, my birthday is 'done' in her eyes for another year. (sigh)

I started reading a new book this week, 'Captivating' by John and Stasi Eldredge. Everything I've read so far has been very nourishing to my heart...but then again, I'm such a romantic (please don't roll your eyes;)

I'm not sure how I came across this this week, but it was interesting. So was this.

One last thought...
Have you ever been hurt by something someone else said (innocently, in passing), even though you know they didn't mean it to hurt you. In your heart and in your mind, you know that their perception is wrong, but you can't change how they think...yet what they said goes to a very big part of you, something you get your value from...and although you want to get past it, you just can't seem to do so? There's really nothing to forgive, they didn't do anything wrong, but still you hurt. That's what I've been going through today. It's not my prettiest side, but there it is... At least my headache is gone now.

Have a good weekend folks!

Monday, April 25, 2005

...excerpt by Stasi Eldredge

"Walk into any church in America, take a look around, and ask yourself this question, "What is a godly woman?" Don't listen to what is said, listen to the lives of the women present. What do we learn? A godly woman is . . . tired. For all she has been told to be is a good servant. Hasn’t that been the church’s message to women: “You are here to serve?”

And what about her heart?

Set deep in the heart of every woman are three core desires. Every woman longs for Romance, to play an irreplaceable role in a great adventure, and to be the Beauty in the tale. It is for such that we were made."


"There may be nothing more beautiful in all the world than to see a woman set free to live from her heart as God’s beloved. To discover who she is as a woman, released from the expectations the world and the church have set upon her. To see her heart healed from years of assault…or neglect. For a woman is a fierce lover indeed, the crown of God’s creation. She has an irreplaceable role in this great Adventure."

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Our neighbours had their baby this week! Though I don't know them well, I rushed over there with something to welcome this new life...and to get my first peek at the precious little one...a girl...Miss Ainsley:) Just a few weeks ago both the new mom and dad looked scared to death. But when I visited with the new mom and her babe this week, she now looked completely comfortable and natural....stirs up so many feelings just thinking about it..

Friday, April 22, 2005

A Woman's Journey

"Then the time came when the risk it took
To remain tight in a bud was more painful
Than the risk it took to blossom."

--Anais Nin

Monday, April 18, 2005

I'm Addicted!

...well addicted might be a bit strong, but my latest favourite breakfast food is a fruit smoothie. Back when I was single I used to make a version of these with extra protein powder after workouts, but then I got married, became a mom and I never seemed to have the extra time to whip this up for myself. Here's what I'm sipping this morning:

1 cup frozen strawberries
1/2 a banana
1 cup plain, low fat yogurt (no sugar)
1 cup skim milk
few drops of stevia (natural sweetner, liquid form)

It's so thick it's like a milk shake, and it tastes so good it is hard to believe it is good for you.

...speaking of good for you, this weekend I experimented making cream pies as we had my in-laws over to celebrate my mother in law's birthday. I had cooked a Greek feast that we all enjoyed, and then a couple of hours later we had banana cream pie. I used Robin McGraw's recipe and tweaked it to our liking. You use Banana Nut Crunch Cereal for the crust (with just a touch of marg). Then you make a double batch of sugar free vanilla pudding, but half the milk and put in 2 tablespoons of skim milk powder...boy, that makes it thick. It ends up being a really balanced and fairly good for you dessert. Last night we tried it once more, but this time, chocolate cream...same principles (except we used Special K for the crust) and mmmm it was good!

Thursday, April 14, 2005

The Duchess of Cornwall...and then someday, The Princess Consort

Now I am not a royal watcher, so it even seems odd to me that I am about to comment on Prince Charles' recent wedding to Camilla Parker Bowles, henceforth known as 'The Dutchess of Cornwall'...

Pardon me, but isn't Charles the Prince of Wales? (yes...) Then that should make Camilla the current Princess of Wales. (Blasphemy you say?!) And if Charles becomes King someday, then, in my mind, Camilla becomes Queen! (Please don't throw anything at me!)

There has been quite a bit of negative press about this all. In people's hearts there is only one Princess of Wales, and that is Diana, and it just seems plain unfair for that title to go to the woman that Charles secretly loved better than Diana (blasphemy again!). I'm not saying that Charles' unfaithfulness was right (neither was Diana's, by the way). I'm just saying that Diana passed away and that these titles do get passed on through the generations. I don't mean any disrespect to Diana... As a child, I actually remember sleeping on the couch and staying up most of the night to see Diana wed Charles. It was the stuff fairy-tales were made of (at least on the outside, anyway).

...And on the inside, I doubt that any of us know the full truth of what took place. But it seems that in the aftermath true love did survive. If the reports I've heard are right, Charles fell in love with Camilla when he was young, before he went off in service. Apparently the Queen wasn't in favour of the match, and Camilla felt no assurance that Charles would come back for her, so she married another. Charles returned and married Diana. I make no excuses for anyone's behaviour beyond that point, but a tiny part of me is warmed that they still love each other so and that they are finally united.

Camilla, in grace and humility has said that she does not wish to be known as the Princess of Wales. She will be the Duchess of Cornwall. Further, should Charles become King, she does not wish to be known as Queen. She will be the Princess Consort. But in my mind, this does not change the reality of the matter.

I've been thinking about this in terms of the relationship I have with my Lord. There are things I've done at times in the past that have gotten in the way of that relationship. I'm not a perfect follower, but He is a perfect Lord...and regardless of any estrangement or unfaithfulness in our pasts, He is my (our) Father, the King of Kings, and so I, by relationship, as his daughter am known as His Princess regardless of any foibles in my past. I guess I'm glad that the public doesn't get a say in whether I'm worthy of that title, only the One with whom I have the relationship has a say in that and He calls me Princess. The Princess of what, I'm not exactly sure, but if I could be Princess of anything, I'd chose the heart, so that is my prayer, Lord give me a princessheart:) (Princessheart, now that has a better ring to it than duchessheart, don't you think?!)
The Shai Awards

This year's Canadian Gospel Music Awards show will be presented from the Hershey Centre in Missisauga on May 14th and will be aired (for the first time nationally) on CBC!

The meaning of the word Shai is:

* To Impact nations
* Do miracles
* Integrity
* Server of the poor and powerful
* Teacher
* Gift
* The receiver of a double portion of anointing

"These seven meanings of the word Shai together sum up what VGM (Vibe Gospel Music Association; Canada's GMA) is trying to accomplish through the Shai Awards Show.

We want each artist to understand that we are affirming their calling as musicians in Canada. Canadian artists need to march forward and impact nations with their music, to see the hand of God in their ministry and the voice of God in their songs. Artists driven to serve both the poor and powerful, grateful for any opportunity to minister. We want to release them with a gift, blessing them with a double portion of anointing together with all that they have learnt; we want to send them out as part of the Church to minister to our nation and the world."

Nominees in select categories include the following (see the Shai webset for a full list):

Amanda Falk - Amanda Falk
Greg Sczebel - Here to Stay
Kim Haller - Wherever
Raylene Scarrot - Taken
Shezza - Shezza

Ali Matthews - Where You Remain
Cheryl Dunn - Let Go
Daae Family, The - Together
One Heart - Straight From the Heart
Philip Grimes - I Knew

Ali Matthews - Where You Remain
Carolyn Arends - Under The Gaze
For The Cause, Kari Bayley - Gods & Fools
Joel Geleynse - The Rebellion of Camouflage
Rob Berg - Dust to Glory

Emma - Ton Amour Me Libère
Luc Dumont - Solo
Maggie Blanchard - Pour tout ce que tu es
Olivier Cheuwa - Nouveau Depart
Richard Toupin - Pleine Lune

Hard Music
Beaumont - First Chance At Forever
Black Talon - Black Talon
Flint - Smoke and Mirrors
Lee Spoken - Drawn In
Understated - Rise From the Ashes

Ali Matthews - Where You Remain
Bev Foster - Trustpoints
Carolyn Arends - Under The Gaze
Curtis Mulder - True
Stephanie Mainville - Family

Calvin Dyck - One Small Child
Juanita Faas - Attitudes
North Park Worship Big Band - Christmas Jazz

Foster & the Paper Bag Band - Orangify
Juanita Faas - Attitudes
North Park Worship Big Band - Christmas Jazz
Ruth McGillivray - River of Soul
Terebinth - Offering

Black Talon - Black Talon
Hetti-Marie - Truth
Malichi - Make A Change
N.I.F.T.Y - The Preface

Ellis - Bright Light City
Hawk Nelson - Letters to the President
Joel Geleynse - The Rebellion of Camouflage
stereotrap - refusing
Three Season Ant - 2 Days After Yesterday

Calvin Dyck - One Small Child
Carolyn Arends - Christmas an Irrational Season
Lapointes, The - This Christmas
Rob Berg - Christmas Here At Our House
Winter Harp - Christmas Night

Southern Gospel/Traditional
His Season - His Season
Master's Four, The - Livin' By Faith
New Hope - The Healer
One Heart - Straight From the Heart
Torchmen, The - Timeless

Praise & Worship
Brian Doerksen - Today
Curtis Mulder - True
Elevate - Elevate
Kry, The - God of Infinite Worth
North Park Worship Band - Bless Original Live Worship

Song of The Year
If I Believe - Aileen Lambardo - Kerroy Williams
Small - Amanda Falk- Amanda Falk/ Meghan Pierce/ Malynda Zacharias/ Marshall Zacharias
I know My God Cares For Me - Andrew Martin - Andrew Martin
The River - Brian Doerksen -Brian Doerksen/ Brian Thiessen/ Michael Hansen
Today - Brian Doerksen - Brian Doerksen/ Sandra Gage
Getting Ready For Glory - Carolyn Arends - Carolyn Arends
This is the Moment - Carolyn Arends - Carolyn Arends
In the Pocket - Greg Sczebel - Greg Sczebel
Every Little Thing - Hawk Nelson - Trevor McNevan/ Jason Dunn/ Daniel Biro/ Matt Paige/ Dave Clark
Holy is Your Name - The Kry - Jean-Luc Lajoie/ Isabelle Lajoie

New Artist of The Year
Amanda Falk
God Rocks
Hawk Nelson
North Park Worship Big Band

Male Soloist of The Year

Female Soloist of The Year

Group of The Year

Artist of The Year

You can cast your vote by going to this site.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005


My Father-in-law passes on all sorts of emails to me everyday. This one made me smile today...I guess I've been a little irritated about least it's good to know I'm sane?!

The little plastic thing in the middle of the sunglasses you are trying to try on.

The person behind you in the supermarket runs his cart
into the back of your ankle.

The elevator stops on every floor and nobody gets on.

There's always a car riding your tail when you're slowing
down to find an address.

You open a can of soup and the lid falls in.

The tiny red string on the Band-Aid wrapper never works for you.

You can never put anything back in a box the way it came.

Three hours and three meetings after lunch you look in the
mirror and discover a piece of parsley stuck to your front tooth.

You slice your tongue licking an envelope.

Your tire gauge lets out half the air while you're trying
to get a reading.

There are always one or two ice cubes that won't pop out
of the tray.

Your daughter left a tissue in her pocket and now it's all over the whole load of wash.

The car behind you blasts its horn because you let a pedestrian
finish crossing.

You set the alarm on your digital clock for 7pm instead of 7am.

You rub on hand cream and can't turn the bathroom doorknob
to get out.

You have to inform five different sales people in the same
store that you're just browsing.

You reach under the table to pick something off the floor
and smash your head on the way up.

Tuesday, April 12, 2005


Certain worship songs go around and around in my mind, and I find myself singing them throughout the day at moments when I don't even realize it. I guess I'm finding myself doing this more than usual this week as Les played in worship last weekend, which meant I had my talented man strumming some extra worship for me to sing along with all last week at home:) There is one song in particular from this weekend's worship that is very personal from my heart...

Unfailing Love
Chris Tomlin

You have my heart and I am yours forever
You are my strength, God of grace and power

And everything You hold in Your hands
Still You make time for me
I can't understand

Praise You God of earth and sky
How beautiful is Your unfailing love
Unfailing love
And You never change, God you remain
The Holy One of my unfailing love
Unfailing love

You are my rock the One I hold onto
You are my song and I sing for You

And everything You hold in Your hands
Still you make time for me
I can't understand

Praise You God of earth and sky
How beautiful is Your unfailing love
Unfailing love
And You never change, God you remain
The Holy One of my unfailing love
Unfailing love

There is another, somewhat more familiar song that we sang in worship this week that I regularly find myself swaying to. It is one of my favourite worship songs and was actually written by someone we know...

Your Love is Perfect

There is no greater love than giving your life for someone
So here I stand in awe considering what You've done
And I will worship you with all I have to offer
What else could I do, there's no greater love than this

Your love is perfect; mercy's new each day
Morning, mid-day, night I'll sing Your praise
Your love is all I've found; that will not let me down
At Your feet is where I'll give my heart away

This song is so singable and heartfelt, and it comes from a worship leader that is easy to follow, Greg Plett. We sing this song in Church mixed in with other contemporary worship songs, but I wonder if many people realize that it was Greg who wrote it?! I love it!

Sunday, April 10, 2005

Something to Think About

This week Hillary Duff was one of the guest hosts on The View. So since Amanda is such a big fan of Hillary's, I taped a few episodes. I thought she might enjoy watching a few of the segments at the beginning when the hosts gather around the table and talk about hot topics in the news; however, I felt the need to preview these episodes before she saw them because sometimes these ladies go places a bit too mature for my precious 10 year old daughter (and a bit to mature for me at times, if you know what I mean?!) Though I did think that they might tame it down a bit this week given their 17 year old guest host...apparently, I was wrong! I just finished previewing a couple of episodes while doing my workout on the Gazelle this morning. There are actually a couple of episodes that I just don't think are age appropriate for Amanda to see. However, one of them greatly intrigued me...

On one of the days, they had Jane Fonda as a guest. I'm not really a Jane fan so this didn't entice me to watch. Apparently she has a new autobiographical book out, and during the hot topics the ladies from The View were really going at some of the more salacious parts. I watched briefly as Hillary Duff sat there quietly embarrassed by the conversation. I was ready to turn off the tape when Jane came out, but then was really captured by something she said as she gave a context for the salacious tidbits of her life that the ladies had been talking about. Here is what Jane said:

"When you grow up feeling you are not good enough...It's a girl-thing - with men, good enough is good enough, but with girls, good enough is not good enough, you have to be perfect. And when you feel that you've got to be perfect for someone to love you, you get stricken with the disease to please.

I got it early on and it was trying to please a parent who just let me know I wasn't perfect enough...So I just got used to leaving myself behind...I'd pretend that everything was fine, and I was a good actress... I wrote about it (those events the ladies on The View were gossiping about) not to be salacious. I wrote about them to show that no one even asked me. I did those things (to) myself."

Then Jane asked Hillary if she could relate to what she was talking about, and she could. Jane said, "I knew you would." Hillary then talked about herself and her friends and the pressure on them to be this "100 lb person". To which Jane responded about how "toxic that is." She said "We're not supposed to be perfect, we're supposed to be complete..." and then she hugged another guest host (I believe the actress' name was Sherry and she was from a program called 'Less than Perfect'). Jane said, "Like you!" (as she hugged Sherry, who was a beautiful full-figured woman, married and with child).

Who would have thought that I could identify with Jane Fonda?! But I did... and in more than just the fact I grew up trying to please a parent who always let me know I wasn't perfect enough... I'll stop there because I'm still processing my thoughts about what she said. But I praise God, that my heavenly Father has shown me something so different than that and that He has healed so many parts of my life, and I ask His forgiveness that sometimes I still walk around trying to be perfect to be loved.

Thursday, April 07, 2005

A Good Question

I came across a good question this morning...

"What would happen if we assumed that everyone loved us and left it up to them to prove otherwise?" Jan Silvious, author.

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

The Tulips are Up!!

...tulip leaves have peaked through the ground by about 3 inches in my front flower bed! How great is that?! Now spring is really here!!

I thought I'd share from the devotion I did's so good, I just *have* to share it!

The Lord of Laughter

Christ is risen, alleluia. He is the Lord of the dance, the dance of the living. He is the Lord of laughter; our laughter is the echo of his risen life within us. He is the risen Lord of glory, who in sovereign authority can say: "Blessed are you who laugh now, because you can bring the joy of Easter to others. But blessed are you only if you can laugh at yourselves, if you don't take yourselves too seriously, if human living doesn't revolve around you and your needs. Only if you can take delight in all of my Father's creation - in sun and surf, in snow and star, in blue marlin and in robin redbreast, in Cezanne, Olivia Newton-John, and veal scaloppini, in the love of a man or woman, and in the presence of the living God within you. Only if your laughter means that you have let go in reckless confidence all that shackles you to yesterday, imprisons you in your small self today, and frightens you with the uncertanty of tomorrow. Blessed are you who laugh, because you are free!"

"Go, eat your food with gladness, and drink
your wine with a joyful heart, for it is now that God favors what you
Eccl 9:7

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Spring has Sprung!

The sun is shining. Most of the snow has melted. I can see our front lawn. We've taken down the Christmas lights. Yeah, it's spring:)

Les & I are feeling like such 'home-owners' these days... getting a few things cleaned up in our yard, waiting for the snow to melt, planning what we want to plant this year, and dreaming about maybe finishing our drive-way this spring! To that end, we headed off to Gardenscape this past weekend to have a look...

Now, I had never been to Gardenscape before...but what a fun day that was?! With Starbucks in hand we browsed all the booths and planned and dreamed some more. And as a result, I now have wayyy more information about driveways rolling around in my mind than I would have thought possible. I am actually becoming well versed in talking about concrete, surface mounts and paving stones, if you can imagine?! We started out with different ideas in mind, but right now are leaning toward paving stone again. I like the whole idea that if something goes wrong, or time marches on, you can always fix it (vs. cement which would have to be jack-hammered out and re-done). Now we'll just have to see if we can make it fit our budget. If any of you have any advice/suggestions, I'd love to hear them...

I'm also dreaming about rosebushes these days, and what else I might want to put in our back yard (it's like a blank canvas). I bought a beautiful rose bush our first summer in the house, but it didn't make it through the following winter, so last summer I was rosebush-less, which was very sad indeed:( I talked to several ladies at Gardenscape about rosebushes, but I still don't know what to choose. I think I'm going to need advice from my flowering friend, Brenda, who has some gorgeous rosebushes along her driveway!

In the front, I tend to plant (or as some would say 'over-plant') a lot of flowers. This year, we're talking about raising the flower bed a bit and putting some rock-ery around it. Decisions, decisions.... I might need to tour a few of your gardens to get some ideas. I hear that Donna and Gloria both have beautiful flowers (but I've never seen them), and I know that Brenda all but lives in her garden come summer. I think I'll have to go on a tour and maybe pop by for some tea!

Saturday, April 02, 2005


I am still being struck by my devotion from a couple of days ago...

The crucified Christ reminds us that despair and disillusionment are not terminal but signs of impending resurrection. What lives beyond the cross is the liberation power of love, freeing us from the ego centeredness that says, "All I am is what I think I am and nothing more." One Good Friday I (Brennan Manning, from 'Reflections for Ragamuffins') prayed in faith I heard him say, "Little brother, I witnessed a Peter who claimed that he did not know me, a James who wanted power in return for service, a Philip who failed to see the Father in me, and scores of disciples who were convinced I was finished on Calvary. The New Testament has many examples of men and women who started out well and then faltered along the way.

"Yet on Easter Day I appeared to Peter; James is not remembered for his ambition but for the sacrifice of his life for the kingdom; Philip did see the Father in me when I pointed the way; and the disciples who despaired had enough courage to recognize me as the stranger who walked the road to Emmaus. My point, little brother, is this: I expect more failure from you that you expect form yourself."

"May the LORD answer you when you are in distress; may the name of the God
of Jacob protect you."
Psalm 20:1