Friday, October 31, 2008


Happy Candy Corn Day! Enjoy this tasty treat... fine art... a plant (candy corn vine)... a delicious treat... a wonderful aroma... a place to stash your cash... an adornment for yourself...
...or as a cute little elf...
Happy Candy Corn Day!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Tuesday, October 28, 2008


I'm just saying...besides, the calories in the little bars don't count because they are still so small they don't know how to stick to people yet! So, eat all you want...ENJOY!!!

Monday, October 27, 2008


Yesterday, I spent the day shopping with Mom and Joy. We had a great and laughing, and being silly! While I was gone, I got a call from Adam telling me about an experience he and Alex had just had. Seems as if Adam had let Scooter out, and forgot to close the door after he came back in. A little while later, Alex heard an unusual noise and they went to investigate. There were 2 intruders in the den...of the winged kind. Yes, 2 birds had flown in and decided this was a nice place to be. The boys had a suspicion that I may not take too kindly to these new house guests and did their best to persuade them to vacate the premises. The birds put up a good fight, it seems...but they were finally able to clear them back out into their own habitat. Good thing for the boys that I did not find the birds here when I returned. However, I did enjoy hearing them tell me about it. Adam said that Alex had not moved that fast in a long time!

This morning, I got up early, before anyone else was awake. I like to sit in my favorite chair in the sunroom, and look outside and enjoy the quietness as the world wakes up. I had begun to look at a magazine when I heard something hit the window...quite hard. Looking up, I saw a flash of red. I got up and went to the window, and saw a brilliant red cardinal lying on the deck...obviously in distress. His little legs were kicking and I could see the rising and falling of his body as he breathed. What to do? What to do? I was physically sick to my stomach thinking of his pain. I went and woke up Alex and asked him to come and get him and throw him back up into the air, so maybe he would take off and fly again. Alex got up and found some gloves and went to the bird. But, his body was not moving anymore. His little chest was not rising and falling, and his legs were still. Alex very tenderly picked him up, and examined him. He said that his neck was obviously broken. We wrapped him in a bag and put him in the garbage, where he would not be disturbed by other creatures. And, that was that.

What a disturbing incident, though. We looked at him up close before we disposed of him and saw his beautiful colorations, and his little beak. What caused him to fly into the sunroom window? We have lived in this house for 33 years, and I have never known of this to happen before. Why today? In reading up on cardinals, I learned that when a male cardinal sees its reflection in a mirror, he will fight it for hours. Did the light being on in my sunroom cause the windows to reflect like glass? They are fiercely territorial. Was he defending his female mate from another imagined cardinal or intruder? The female, who is brown, is the singer in the pair. She will sing to signal the male (brilliant red) when to bring food to the nest. Was he on an early morning breakfast run? The mated pair will share song phrases with each other. Is there a female cardinal sitting in my big, beautiful tree, wondering why her handsome mate doesn't answer her call?

It seems as if there are many lessons to learn from the birds. They are certainly appearing in my life quite a lot lately. OK, so, I got the message in Maui, from the roosting birds. And, I think the lesson from the flying intruders was that we can all use a little help to get out of a jam. Be ready to help those in trouble whenever the opportunity presents itself. But, this is going to be a morbid lesson, and something I do not wish to think of right now. Nevertheless, it is before me at this moment in time. What then, do I learn from this poor, unfortunate cardinal? Be careful where you go? Don't go full speed into unknown territory? Be sure there is a real danger before you go into full-fight mode? Or, that life is can end very unexpectedly...enjoy every day and every person in your life? Or, will my passing cause anyone to stop and think and take stock of their life as this tiny bird caused me to so think?

As I felt the sadness this bird's passing brought to my heart, it reminded me again that my Heavenly Father was Himself aware of what had just taken place on Earth, in Alabama, in my town, on my street, behind my house, on my deck, as I sat in quiet contemplation. The Creator of the Universe, the Master Designer, God Himself saw this little creature fall. I know this because His word tells me: "What is the price of two sparrows—one copper coin? But not a single sparrow can fall to the ground without your Father knowing it." Matthew 10:29. I, in my own busy life, do not have time to give thought to the birds that live in my tree. I do not take the time to think or them, much less to care for them. But, my Heavenly Father, who has control of everything in the Universe, does. What else that matters greatly to My Father, am I giving little thought to? What other things am I not 'taking care of' that I should be? Is this the lesson of the cardinal? I have much to think on. And I shall.

Life lessons...taught best by the Master Teacher.

Sunday, October 26, 2008


This doesn't exactly meet the requirements for 'beautiful'...but it sure made me smile when I saw it. And what is more beautiful than a smile? So this really is a round-about way! Enjoy!

This delightful artwork is by Richard Barrett Florence.


Many thanks to my friend, Earth Mommy, at At Shore's End, who awarded me the Kreativ Blogger Award. Thanks so much. As I told her, I like to think that I am a creative person. God has blessed us all with such varied talents. We should always be on the lookout for ways to use them. Thank you, my friend,for reminding me to use my talents more.

One of the requirements is to list 6 things that make me happy.

1. I am happy when Alex is feeling well enough to be up.

2. I am happy when there is a cold Diet Dr. Pepper in the refrigerator...waiting for me!

3. I am happy when the scales announce that I have gone down in weight!

4. I am happy when I can spend an afternoon with my Mom and Sister.

5. I am happy when one of my boys gives me a huge bear hug!

6. I am happy when my dog, Scooter, smiles at me.


Saturday, October 25, 2008


Because I think the outcome of this election is the most important issue facing America at this time, I ask that you read this article from The Illinois Review from September 21, 2008. It is written by Huntley Brown, a Christian and a concert pianist with awesome musical talent. Some of this is a little hard to read, but, friends, it is the truth...and we need to tell everyone we know.

Why I Can't Vote For Obama

by Huntley Brown

Dear Friends,

A few months ago I was asked for my perspective on Obama, I sent out an e-mail with a few points. With the election just around the corner I decided to complete my perspective. Those of you on my e-list have seen some of this before but its worth repeating..

First I must say who ever wins the election will have my prayer support. Obama needs to be commended for his accomplishments but I need to explain why I will not be voting for him.

Many of my friends process their identity through their blackness. I process my identity through Christ. Being a Christian (a Christ follower) means he leads I follow. I can't dictate the terms he does because he is the leader.

I can't vote black because I am black I have to vote Christian because that's who I am. Christian first black second. Neither should anyone from the other ethnic groups vote because of ethnicity. 200 years from now I wont be asked if I was black or white. I will be asked if I know Jesus and accepted him as Lord and savior.

In an election there are many issues to consider but when a society gets abortion, same-sex marriage, embryonic stem-cell research, human cloning to name a few wrong economic concerns will soon not matter.

We need to follow Martin Luther King's words don't judge someone by the color of their skin but by the content of their character. I don't know Obama so all I can go off is his voting record.

His voting record earned him the title of the most liberal senator in the US Senate in 2007.

NATIONAL JOURNAL: Obama: Most Liberal Senator in 2007 (01/31/2008)

To beat Ted Kennedy and Hilary Clinton as the most liberal senator, takes some doing.

Obama accomplished this feat in 2 short years.

I wonder what would happen to America if he had four years to work with.

There is a reason planned parenthood gives him a 100 % ratings.

There is a reason the homosexual community supports him.

There is a reason Ahmadinejad, Chavez, Castro, Hamas etc loves him.

There is a reason he said he would nominate liberal judges to the supreme court.

There is a reason he voted against the infanticide bill.

There is a reason he voted No on the constitutional ban of same-sex marriage.

There is a reason he voted no on partial birth abortion.

There is a reason he voted no on confirming Justices Roberts and Alito. These two judges are conservatives and they have since overturned partial birth abortion. The same practice Obama wanted to continue.

Lets take a look at the practice he wanted to continue.

The 5 Step Partial Birth Abortion procedure

A. Guided by ultrasound, the abortionist grabs the baby's leg with forceps.

(Remember this is a live baby)

B. The baby's leg is pulled out into the birth canal.

C. The abortionist delivers the baby's entire body, except for the head.

D. The abortionist jams scissors into the baby's skull. The scissors are then opened to enlarge the hole.

E. The scissors are removed and a suction catheter is inserted. The child's brains are sucked out, causing the skull to collapse. The dead baby is then removed.

God help him.

There is a reason Obama opposed the parent notification law.

Think about this you can't give a kid an aspirin without parental notification but that same kid can have an abortion without parental notification. This is insane.

There is a reason he went to Jeremiah Wright's church for 20 years.

Obama tells us he has good judgement but he sat under Jeremiah Wright teaching for 20 years. Now he is condemning Wrights sermons. I wonder why now?

Obama said Jeremiah Wright led him to the Lord and discipled him. A disciple is one in training. Jesus told us in Matthew 28 v 19 - 20 Go and make disciples of all nations. This means reproduce yourself. Teach people to think like you, walk like you, talk like you believe what you believe etc. The question I have is what did Jeremiah Wright teach him?

Would you support a White President who went to a church which has tenants that said they have a

1. Commitment to the White Community

2. Commitment to the White Family

3. Adherence to the White Work Ethic

4. Pledge to make the fruits of all developing and acquired skills available to the White Community .
5. Pledge to Allocate Regularly, a Portion of Personal Resources for Strengthening and Supporting White Institutions
6. Pledge allegiance to all White leadership who espouse and embrace the White Value System
7. Personal commitment to embracement of the White Value System.”

Would you support a President who went to a church like that?

Just change the word from white to black and you have the tenets of Obamas former church. If President Bush was a member of a church like this, he would be called a racist. Jessie Jackson and Al Sharpton would have been marching outside.

This kind of church is a racist church. Obama did not wake up after 20 years and just discovered he went to a racist church. The church can't be about race. Jesus did not come for any particular race. He came for the whole world.

A church can't have a value system based on race. The churches value system has to be based on biblical mandate. It does not matter if its a white church or a black church its still wrong. Anyone from either race that attends a church like this would never get my vote.

Obama's former Pastor Jeremiah Wright is a disciple of liberal theologian James Cone, author of the 1970 book A Black Theology of Liberation. Cone once wrote: “Black theology refuses to accept a God who is not identified totally with the goals of the black community. If God is not for us and against white people, then he is a murderer, and we had better kill him.

Cone is the man Obama's mentor looks up to. Does Obama believe this?

So what does all this mean for the nation?

In the past when the Lord brought someone with the beliefs of Obama to lead a nation it meant one thing judgement.

Read 1 Samuel 8. When Israel asked for a king.

First God says 1 Samuel 1 v 9 Now listen to them; but warn them solemnly and let them know what the king who will reign over them will do.'

Then God says

1 Samuel 1 v 18 When that day comes, you will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, and the LORD will not answer you in that day.'

19 But the people refused to listen to Samuel. 'No!' they said. 'We want a king over us. 20 Then we will be like all the other nations, with a king to lead us and to go out before us and fight our battles.'
21 When Samuel heard all that the people said, he repeated it before the LORD. 22 The LORD answered, 'Listen to them and give them a king.'

Here is what we know for sure

God is not schizophrenic

He would not tell one person to vote for Obama and one to vote for McCain. As the scripture says a city divided against itself cannot stand, so obviously many people are not hearing from God.

Maybe I am the one not hearing but I know God does not change and Obama contradicts many things I read in scripture so I doubt it.

For all my friends who are voting for Obama can you really look God in the face and say Father based on your word, I am voting for Obama even though I know he will continue the genocidal practice of partial birth abortion.

He might have to nominate three or four supreme court justices, and I am sure he will be nominating liberal judges who will be making laws that are against you.

I also know he will continue to push for homosexual rights, even though you destroyed Sodom and Gomorrah for this.I know I can look the other way because of the economy.

I could not see Jesus agreeing with many of Obama's positions. Finally I have two questions for all my liberal friends.

Since we know someone's value system has to be placed on the nation,

1 Whose value system should be placed on the nation.

2 Who should determine that this is the right value system for the nation?


Huntley Brown

Friday, October 24, 2008



******Obama's Not Exactlys:*******

1.) "Selma March Got Me Born" - NOT EXACTLY, your parents felt safe enough to have you in 1961 - Selma had no effect on your birth, as Selma was in 1965. (Google'Obama Selma ' for his full March 4, 2007 speech and articles about its various untruths.)

2.) "Father Was A Goat Herder" - NOT EXACTLY, he was a privileged, well educated youth, who went on to work with the Kenyan Government.

3.) "Father Was A Proud Freedom Fighter" - NOT EXACTLY, he was part of one of the most corrupt and violent governments Kenya has ever had.

4.) "My Family Has Strong Ties To African Freedom" - NOT EXACTLY, your cousin Raila Odinga has created mass violence in attempting to overturn a legitimate election in 2007, in Kenya . It is the first widespread violence in decades. The current government is pro-American but Odinga wants to overthrow it and establish Muslim Sharia law. Your half-brother, Abongo Oba ma, is Odinga's follower. You interrupted your New Hampshire campaigning to speak to Odinga on the phone. Check out the following link for verification of that....and for more.
Obama's cousin Odinga in Kenya ran for president and tried to get Sharia muslim law in place there. When Odinga lost the elections, his followers have burned Christians' homes and then burned men, women and children alive in a Christian church where they took shelter.. Obama SUPPORTED his cousin before the election process here started. Google Obama and Odinga and see what you get. No one wants to know the truth.

5.) "My Grandmother Has Always Been A Christian" - NOT EXACTLY, she does her daily Salat prayers at 5am according to her own interviews. Not to mention, Christianity wouldn't allow her to have been one of 14 wives to 1 man .

6.) "My Name is African Swahili" - NOT EXACTLY, your name is Arabic and 'Baraka' (from which Barack came) means 'blessed' in that language. Hussein is also Arabic and so is Obama.
Barack Hussein Obama is not half black. If elected, he would be the first Arab-American President, not the first black President. Barack Hussein Obama is 50% Caucasian from his mother's side and 43.75% Arabic and 6.25% African Negro from his father's side. While Barack Hussein Obama's fa ther was from Kenya , his father's family was mainly Arabs.. Barack Hussein Obama's father was only 12.5% African Negro and 87.5% Arab (his father's birth certificate even states he's Arab, not African Negro). From....and for more....go to.....,_only_6.25%25_African

7.) "I Never Practiced Islam" - NOT EXACTLY, you practiced it daily at school, where you were registered as a Muslim and kept that faith for 31 years, until your wife made you change, so you could run for office.
4-3-08 Article 'Obama was 'quite religious in islam''

8.) "My School In Indonesia Was Christian" - NOT EXACTLY, you were registered as Muslim there and got in trouble in Koranic Studies for making faces (check your own book).
February 28, 2008. Kristoff from the New York Times a year ago: Mr. Obama recalled the opening lines of the Arabic call to prayer, reciting them with a first-rate accent. In a remark that seemed delightfully uncalculated (it'll give Alabama voters heart attacks), Mr. Obama described the call to prayer as 'one of the prettiest sounds on Earth at sunset.' This is just one example of what Pamela is talking about when she says 'Obama's narrative is being altered, enhanced and manipulated to whitewash troubling facts.'

9.) "I Was Fluent In Indonesian" - NOT EXACTLY, not one teacher says you could speak the language.

10.) "Because I Lived In Indonesia , I Have More Foreign Experience' - NOT EXACTLY, you were there from the ages of 6 to 10, and couldn't even speak the language. What did you learn except how to study the Koran and watch cartoons.

11.) "I Am Stronger On Foreign Affairs" - NOT EXACTLY, except for Africa (surprise) and the Middle East (bigger surprise), you have never been anywhere else on the planet and thus have NO experience with our closest allies.

12.) "I Blame My Early Drug Use On Ethnic Confusion" - NOT EXACTLY, you were quite content in high school to be Barry Obama, no mention of Kenya and no mention of struggle to identify - your classmates said you were just fine

13.) "An Ebony Article Moved Me To Run For Office" - NOT EXACTLY, Ebony has yet to find the article you mention in your book. It doesn't, and never did, exist.

14.) "A Life Magazine Article Changed My Outlook On Life" - NOT EXACTLY, Life has yet to find the article you mention in your book. It doesn't, and never did, exist.

15.) "I Won't Run On A National Ticket In '08" - NOT EXACTLY, here you are, despite saying, live on TV, that you would not have enough experience by then, and you are all about having experience first.

16.) "Voting 'Present' is Common In Illinois Senate" - NOT EXACTLY, they are common for YOU, but not many others have 130 NO VOTES.

17.) "Oops, I Mis-voted" - NOT EXACTLY, only when caught by church groups and Democrats, did you beg to change your misvote.

18.) "I Was A Professor Of Law" - NOT EXACTLY, you were a senior lecturer ON LEAVE.

19.) "I Was A Constitutional Lawyer" - NOT EXACTLY, you were a senior lecturer ON LEAVE.

20.) "Without Me, There Would Be No Ethics Bill" - NOT EXACTLY, you didn't write it, introduce it, change it or create it.

21.) "The Ethics Bill Was Hard To Pass" - NOT EXACTLY, it took just 14 days from start to finish.

22.) "I Wrote A Tough Nuclear Bill" - NOT EXACTLY, your bill was rejected by your own party for its pandering and lack of all regulation - mainly because of your Nuclear donor, Exelon, from which David Axelrod came.

23.) "I Have Released My State Records" - NOT EXACTLY, as of March, 2008, state bills you sponsored or voted for have yet to be released, exposing all the special interests pork hidden within.

24.) "I Took On The Asbestos Altgeld Gardens Mess" - NOT EXACTLY, you were part of a large group of people who remedied Altgeld Gardens . You failed to mention anyone else but yourself, in your books.

25.) "My Economics Bill Will Help America" - NOT EXACTLY, your 111 economic policies were just combined into a proposal which lost 99-0, and even YOU voted against your own bill.

26.) "I Have Been A Bold Leader In Illinois" - NOT EXACTLY, even your own supporters claim to have not seen BOLD action on your part.

27.) "I Passed 26 Of My Own Bills In One Year" - NOT EXACTLY, they were not YOUR bills, but rather handed to you, after their creation by a fellow Senator, to assist you in a future bid for higher office.

28.) "No One on my campaign contacted Canada about NAFTA" - NOT EXACTLY, the Canadian Government issued the names and a memo of the conversation your campaign had with them.

29.) "I Am Tough On Terrorism" - NOT EXACTLY, you missed the Iran Resolution vote on terrorism and your good friend Ali Abunimah supports the destruction off Israel .

30.) "I Want All Votes To Count" - NOT EXACTLY, you said let the delegates decide.

31.) "I Want Americans To Decide" - NOT EXACTLY, you prefer caucuses that limit the vote, confuse the voters, force a public vote, and only operate during small windows of time.

32.) "I passed 900 Bills in the State Senate" - NOT EXACTLY, you passed 26, most of which you didn't write yourself.

33.) "I Believe In Fairness, Not Tactics" - NOT EXACTLY, you used tactics to eliminate Alice Palmer from running against you.

34.) "I Don't Take PAC Money" - NOT EXACTLY, you take loads of it.

35.) "I don't Have Lobbysists" - NOT EXACTLY, you have over 47 lobbyists, and counting.

36.) "My Campaign Had Nothing To Do With The 1984 Ad" - NOT EXACTLY, your own campaign worker made the ad on his Apple in one afternoon.

37.) "I Have Always Been Against Iraq" - NOT EXACTLY, you weren't in office to vote against it AND you have voted to fund it every single time.

38.) "I Have Always Supported Universal Health Care" - NOT EXACTLY, your plan leaves us all to pay for the 15,000,000 who don't have to buy it.

39.) "My uncle liberated Auschwitz concentration camp" - NOT EXACTLY, your mother had no brothers and the Russian army did the liberating.

So, who EXACTLY is this Obama guy and what is he trying to sell us?! Why would anyone believe ANYTHNG he says?

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


Beautiful red ginger against lush greenery.
Ferns and more ferns!
Mossy tree on hotel grounds.
Shades of stone,sticks and greens.
After following a scary, narrow, one lane road for miles up the mountain, we came upon this tiny village. Here, in this sure-to-be-seen green stand, they were selling homemade banana bread!
Beautiful little green church, beside the road.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008


That is right, my friends...10 weeks...10 little weeks. Excuse me while I hyperventilate a little! In the few days that remain in the year of our Lord, 2008, I have much, MUCH to be done!

1. I have 3 programs to prepare. One will have appr. 75 children, and the other two will have appr. 35 children each. Parts must also be given out and practiced...along with all the music.

2. I have 2 shirts to design. One for the kids and one for the adults. Then orders must be taken, and then given out when they come in. Thank goodness for Paula!

3. I am building a you hadn't heard. :) We could move at anytime during the next month. However, there is still some furniture to be ordered...including a I hope it takes a few more weeks. No, I really don't mean that. I would like for it to be tomorrow because I am going bonkers trying to live with things packed in boxes all around me. I'll sleep on the floor if necessary.

4. I still have major packing to do...but not nearly as much as I have had. Most of what I have left is MY closet. I tend to procrastinate in the things that cause me the greatest stress. I am procrastinating big time here.

5. I have Christmas gifts to shop for. Of all years, why did I not complete this task earlier? Think everyone on my list would like a Barnes and Nobel gift certificate?

6. Alex has had a particularly bad few days and I need to be available as much as possible.

7. I still have clothes to wash from the Maui trip! I know...I feel your shame. But, since I have not needed those sun dresses and shorts here at home...I have just let it slide. But, I refuse to take dirty clothes to the Creek House! Mom, I know you want to deny ever knowing me about now. EDITED TO ADD: I have gotten all but some 'wash me alone' pieces done.

8. There are still decisions to be made at the house. We are waiting for the rest of the travertine to come in from Turkey. Not Turkey, NC...Turkey the country! (there really is a turkey, NC) Is there no place closer to get this stuff? Also, because our builder made a little mistake...we are waiting for more tin to come in. I am having a pressed tin backsplash in the kitchen, and as a ceiling in the guest bathroom. Alex's bed is being built. It is going to be really neat with all the room controls built into the nightstands. Also, all his music will be controlled from there, too. He will have everything within reach for those days he does not feel well enough to be up. There will also be handrails to assist him.

9. And the people I live with keep wanting to wear clean clothes and eat food three times a day! If they would stop...maybe I could get all caught up and get ready to move. Fat chance!

10. And in case you had forgotten, there is Halloween and Thanksgiving thrown in the mix. We are not much on Halloween in our family now that the boys are all grown. And it looks as if Thanksgiving may be a big delicious bowl of Taco Soup! And everyone better be thankful to get that, cause as stressed as I am will be double that by the time Thanksgiving rolls around. And, I'm sure you've heard that little saying 'bout "if Mama ain't happy...". :)

And in the midst of all of this, Ian has to travel back to NC for a doctor's visit. He has it all under control, and does not need my help with that. Very resourceful, that young man. AND, he is bringing a friend down from Birmingham to our big National Peanut Festival the week of Halloween. So sorry she can not stay with us, but where sould she stay? I could lay a mattress across some boxes...but that probably would not leave too good of an impression. So, I think she will stay with Adam and Suzanne. Thanks so much, you two, for helping out.

Isn't this wonderful? The more I look at all of this, the happier I become! Look how God is blessing us? Wonderful family, great friends, all willing to come and help us out. A new house, and plans for plenty good times to come! So..."BACK-OFF, STRESS!!"...I plan to enjoy this! And, hey, you friends out in Blogsville...send up a few prayers, please, to keep this Mama happy!


The Grand Wailea on the island of Maui is a treasure to visit. Here are some of the pictures we made on the grounds.

This is a path that goes for several miles along the beach. It connects the resorts and shopping areas as well as some fine restaurants.

Below is the beautiful, open-air dining room where we had breakfast each morning.

This light was massive! And, so beautiful when lit!

The courtyard between the room towers was so lush and green. Several thatched huts were available for quiet times. There were streams running through it, making lovely sounds as they ran over the rocks. Striking sculptures were all along the path. It is all lit with tiki torches at night. (Here, too, are the 'bird bushes!)
This chapel is on the grounds and is used for many 'destination weddings.' There is stained glass depicting moments from Hawaii's history on all 4 sides. The inside walls, floor and pews are all made of native koa wood! It will take your breath away!

Property Description (from their website)

The Grand Wailea is truly a "Grand Hotel" fronting beautiful Wailea Beach.

The Five Diamond Grand Wailea Resort is centered around six major design cornerstones: flowers, water, trees, sound, light and art. Enjoy extensive waterslides and a top notch beach.

The Grand Wailea is the last of the famous "Destination Hotels" built in Hawaii. There was no expense spared in building this hotel. The second you step foot onto this property it will take your breath away. Magnificent vistas, gorgeous art & sculptures and exquisite attention to detail are the hallmarks of this hotel.

Monday, October 20, 2008


When I talked to my friend, Tina today, she asked me what the highlight of my trip to Maui was...and I really could not think of an answer to give her. I had a wonderful time, but nothing stood out as a highlight.
Today, she came over to help me pack up Alex's room. I had shared an experience with Alex that happened while I was gone, and he reminded me to tell Tina about it.
So, I will share it with you, as well.

We had a wonderful balcony view from our hotel room on the 5th floor. The top of several palm trees were right next to the balcony. One afternoon, about an hour before dark, I was sitting there and reading a book. 2 birds came and perched on the tree closest to me, and started chirping for all they were worth. I mean, they were loud! Then as I watched, several more birds began to fly into the courtyard. They came swooping over the top of the buildings, and headed right to the top of 2 trees in the middle of the courtyard. Amazed, I watched as bird after bird after bird came over the roof tops and headed straight for those 2 trees! (The ones in the middle with the white flowers-plumeria trees.) They came by 2's mostly...but sometimes groups of 8 or 10 would arrive at one time. They just kept coming. And then I began to notice that everyone of them was chirping as loudly as the 2 that got this whole show started. I would guess that by the time they finished arriving, there must have been at least 300 birds in those 2 trees...and all telling their news to one another. It was so loud, that people were going inside to get away from the noise! What a strange thing...and got quiet...and I forgot about it. The next night, I heard those 2 birds from inside my room and went out to see what would happen...sure happened again, just like before! And, it happened every night I was there.
I called Don out to watch with me and he said, "Silly girl, you can tell you are from the city! Haven't you ever heard of birds roosting before?" Well, no. I don't think I had.
Now, I know some of you, my friends, live on farms or in the country and this may be a common occurrence for you...but, I was indeed amazed and awed by this spectacle in the bird kingdom.
So I did a little research into "roosting" or "why birds of a feather flock together"? Here's what I learned: birds roost for several reasons. One is for crowding together they are able to take advantage of each other's body heat to protect themselves from a winter's night or a cool ocean breeze. Another reason is that birds 'share information' during their roosts. While I personally believe that their chirping is just a sharing of the day's activities...scientists say the birds are able to size up each other's body condition and judge whether it would be beneficial to follow them to their foraging grounds the next morning. And, thirdly, a large group of roosting birds form a type of safety net from certain predators.
OK, so that is way more than you ever wanted to know about roosting, too. But, the fact remains, this tiny part of God's creation has a reason and purpose for the things they do. It is not just happenstance. All this bird behavior was put into their minuscule bird brains by God himself. He taught the first birds what to do...and they have followed this pattern ever since. Did you know that sleeping birds can operate one hemisphere of the brain at a time? That way, they can open the eye on the 'awake' side and watch for the enemy...while still sleeping on the other! Amazing!
If God took such pains with much more has He done for us? The more I look at nature and see the mighty work of our Creator in the smallest of His creatures...the more in awe I am of His mighty power.
So, maybe this little 'bird lesson' was much more than that...because it reminded me of a great truth. God cares for those little birds...His word tells us that he knows when even the tiniest one falls. How much more does He care about me? If He plans for them to be safe and warm...He does the same for me. If he plans for them to have companionship...He plans it more for me. If He wants them to have a period of rest is important to Him as well. My well-being matters to Him...the Great Creator of the Universe! Now, none of this was 'news' to me...I learned about God's care at a very early age. And, I have taught it to children myself for years. I think God just wanted to send me a love letter and remind me that I was on His mind. And, he sent it via the birds...all 300 of them!
When I finished my story, Tina said, "Well, this, then, sounds like the highlight of your trip. Because if it made this big of an impression on will never forget it." And, she's right. I don't think I ever will.

Sunday, October 19, 2008


Beautiful and oh so fragrent, the plumeria flower is a delight!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


O, God, you are magnificent!
You, alone, are the Master Creator!
The waves in the ocean pound out praises to You as they roll onto the shore!

The flowers send out their alluring fragrance...
Reminding all who wander by to stop and breathe it in.

The wind blows all of Your creation-
The palms dance against the bluest of skies.
The clouds gather to offer shade-
As the birds sing out of Your glory.

The flowers wear their most beautiful shades of color to delight our eyes.

Only You, O God, could cause such beauty, and peace, and contentment to reside in this one place.

The fruits of the trees outdo each other
as they produce crop after crop of delicious offerings:
Pineapple, papaya, mango, banana, coconut.
What a delicious feast You set for us!

The fish in the ocean:
The mahi-mahi, the ahi, the opaka- so sweet to the taste.
A most generous gift from you.

The sky above it all pulls out its most awesome colors...
It paints with blues and oranges, and yellows, and pinks, and blackest of all blacks.
It covers this beautiful island with its canopy of beauty.
It shouts to all the greatness of our God.

This mere observer and partaker is humbled and awed...and so very grateful.

Tonja Owens...10/16/08

Pictures made in Maui, Hawaii...October, 2008.