Sunday, January 31, 2010


Has there ever been a time that you have felt insignificant?

...a time when you felt all alone in the world?

...maybe you felt like the things you said and did did not really matter...

...maybe you felt as if you were facing a great unknown...

...or perhaps, you just felt like a small speck in the universe...


I think we have all felt this way at one time or another. And, you may even know where to find the answers that will make you feel better. I, too, know where to find these answers...but there have been times in my life when I did not even have the strength to look for them. There have been times when I knew what these answers were...but, wondered if they were really true. If God really would do the things He says He will.

I never want to leave the impression that I have never doubted, that I have never questioned God. Because the opposite is true. I have. But, I am on the other side of those feelings now...I have been through them and learned much about my God.

I have questioned and He gave me answers. I have doubted and He has shown me where I stand. He has made me to see that He is the ONLY answer to my feelings of unworthiness or loneliness. He showed me that He always knows where I am...He always keeps track of me...I am never alone. And, NO ONE cares for me like He does.

I learned these lessons years ago, but I have felt compelled to write about some of these things today. Maybe some of you who are kind enough to visit me at Gatherings need to hear these words. Another thing I have learned is that when God nudges my heart about doing something...I need to listen.

God is good. God is trustworthy. God loves you more than anything. He proved Himself to me...and He will prove Himself to you. He keeps His promises.

So, here are a few verses that speak to me...and remind me of what I mean to Him. And, whether someone needs this now, or maybe will need it next week...I'll leave that part up to Him. He will see that whomever needs it will see it.

One more thing. If I can ever answer questions about my faith in the would make me proud to do so. If I can help you find answers that you may would be a privilege.


"Your love, O Lord, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies."
Psalm 36:5

"Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you". James 4:8

"How precious it is, Lord, to realize that You are thinking about me constantly" (Psalm 139:17).

"Be my rock of refuge, to which I can always go; give the command to save me,
for you are my rock and my fortress" (Psalm 71:3, NIV).

"You are my hiding place, You will protect me from troubles and
surround me with songs of deliverance." Psalm 32:7

"The eyes of the Lord are on those who fear Him, on those whose hope is in His UNFAILING LOVE, to deliver them from death and keep them alive in famine. We wait in HOPE for the Lord;
HE IS HELP AND OUR SHIELD. In Him our hearts rejoice, for we TRUST in His holy name.
May your unfailing love rest upon us, O Lord,
even as WE PUT OUR HOPE IN YOU!" Psalm 33:18

Saturday, January 30, 2010


Looking for something else today, I ran across this old ad...

Can you read what it says? It is really hard to see even if you enlarge's what I read..."HOW SOON IS TOO SOON? Not soon enough. Laboratory tests over the last few years have proven that babies who start drinking soda in the formative years have a much better chance of gaining acceptance and 'fitting in' during those awkward pre-teen and teen years.
So do yourself a favor. Do your child a favor. Start them on a strict regimen of cola and other sugary carbonated beverages right now, for a lifetime of guaranteed happiness." THE SODA POP BOARD OF AMERICA ????????AVE. CHICAGO, IL.
(next to bottle)...Promotes Active Lifestyle...Boosts Personality...Gives Body Essential Sugars.
It is unbelievable to me that this could ever have printed.
And, this ad says its drink will do almost everything...for adults or children...

That was then...but what about now...

C*ke has issued a statement in 2009 that says...
"C*ke is "wholesome and suitable" for kids, but we understand that children are impressionable, and we respect the role of parents and caregivers in making food and beverage choices with their children. Therefore, we are committed not to directly market messages for any of our beverages to children under 12."

Yeah, those polar bear and penguins don't target children at all...

I guess it started then and continues still today. Manufacturers will promote their products to whomever they like...They will target adults and children... (remember the Mean Joe Green commercial?). The bottom line is the dollar...not what is best for us or our children. It comes down again to the fact the person responsible for YOUR child is YOU. It's up to you to make the decisions...not the ads and commercials and manufacturers.

Thursday, January 28, 2010


This is where I'll wake up after a wonderful night's sleep...

and do a load of laundry here...

While I'm waiting, I'll sit here and read...books and magazines...

After, I play with the well-behaved, obedient, smart, beautiful children on the beach

I'll dress for dinner...think I'll wear this...

Then, I'll prepare the table for my guests...


Wednesday, January 27, 2010


F.I.N.A.L.L.Y...finally I feel like my home is complete! My poor, sad table has looked so lonely sitting there all exposed...what with there being no chairs to
sit around it and keep it company!

It has been unavoidable...the delay, I mean. After they were ordered, they sold out...then began remaking them...then they were on back order. Delivery date...early December...late December...and January 27! Of course, IF they had been ordered sooner, they would have been in place much sooner. But, I am not responsible for that. I am not pointing any fingers here...but it's not my fault or Alex's.

However, if they had come earlier...I would not have had this wonderful pick-me-up on this cold, winter's day in late January. So, 'when' matters no more. They are here and they are in place. And, I am happy!

And, now, I am going to go and sit in every single one of them!

After I do a little more dancing!

Monday, January 25, 2010


Sleepless night last night...afraid that I would over sleep and be late to jury duty this morning. Finally got up and got the alarm clock and put it in the bed with me. Couldn't sleep...afraid I had not set it was not the one I am used to. Set the alarm on my Palm always works...put it in the bed with me too. Couldn't sleep...too much stuff in my bed.

Finally drifted off...exactly 1 single minute before the alarms went off! And, they both worked. Needless worry. Very OCD.

Got up, got ready...make-up, teeth, hair, clothes...then out the door at 7:30. Is that enough time? I don't know...I still haven't gotten used to living on the other side of town. Well, we'll see. WAIT! Better take 2 minutes and stop at CVS and get me a Diet Dr. Pepper. Who knows how long I may have to sit and wait when I get there...and who knows if they even have a coke machine. (I know I said coke machine...and I meant Dr.Pepper machine...but this is the South, folks...everything here is a coke...and when some one asks for a soda, we do not know what they are talking about...unless you have been to another part of the country and they asked if you would like a soda, and you said, 'no thanks, I'd like a Dr.Pepper, please,' and they looked at you like you were crazy, and you wondered just who was crazy here, cause a soda means club soda and it isn't even good. And, that's a fact.) Now where was I?

So, I stopped and got 3 Diet Dr. Peppers and a big Snickers Bar...just in case. There may be so many bad guys to attend to we can't even break for lunch! Be Prepared is my motto. Better to over buy than over need!

Took off again for the court house. They asked on the summons how far it is round trip to there from your home. I do not have any idea. I am not very good at guesstimating things like that. So, I'll put 10 miles there and 10 miles back. That will make it easy for whoever to round it off. They may have had the same math teachers as me and need all the help they can get.

Why, oh, why do we have a court house parking lot that has 50 spaces in it? When they summons 150-200 people to come for jury duty...where should they park? And, why do they not understand that a body may have to ride around for nigh onto 30 minutes or so waiting for a parking space because the court house parking lot only has 50. I suppose the lawyers and the clerks and the judges and the secretaries all have to find a spot, too. And, they all got there before 8:00, and used up every available space. Finally I see a line of cars going into a parking lot back behind a church. And, I follow, hoping there will be just 1 left when I get there. I make my way across 4 lanes of traffic, get in line, and no, no there is not a place left. Everyone in line before me got a spot...I was the first one in line who did not have a place to park. There were not sweet words in my mouth at that moment! HOWEVER..ever watchful driver that I am, I happened to spot about 6 spaces in front of said church, that were not filled. There were no signs saying it was a sin to park there. And, so, being in the predicament that I found myself in at the moment...I pulled in and switched off the car. And, so did the next 5 people in line behind me. When I got out of my car, one after the other asked me, "Is it OK for us to park here?" Did I look like the parking attendant? "Sure", I said. "I feel just fine about parking here". And, I hurried on down the street, leaving them to figure it out for themselves. Me? I was going for it. Down the street...wind blowing...very cold...jacket in my arms.

Here's one of those "CAN'T BELIEVE PEOPLE ARE SO DUMB" stories. A group of about 10 of us arrive at the corner at the same time. We all stand there, stomping around like horses, trying to keep warm. We wait through 2 complete light cycles. The WALK sign never come up. When we walked up, Girl 1 said to Girl 2..."push the button." She meant the PUSH TO WALK BUTTON. After we've waited and waited and waited...Girl 1 says to Girl 2 "You did push the button, didn't you?" Girl 2 says, "No, I started to, but the cars started moving again, so I didn't need to!" Everyone out on the busiest street corner in Dothan on Monday morning at 8:00,immediately rolled their eyes in unison. THEN...out of nowhere...Girl 1 says, "Well I'm going anyway!" And, she takes off across the highway on the busiest street corner in Dothan. Cars screech to a stop...she keeps running. Halfway across, Girl 2 says, "I'm coming too!" And, off she goes...across that same busiest corner in Dothan. And, cars are blowing their horns and looking all kinds of ugly at those of us on the street corner...those of us following the laws of the great city of Dothan. I just waved, because I figured if they could act like stupid, so could I. No one waved back, however. A gentleman beside me said, "OK, PEOPLE! I HAVE PUSHED THE BUTTON!" And, we all gave him a round of applause, just as the WALK sign started blinking that we had only 24 seconds to make our way across. And, we did.

We walked into the lobby, the very small lobby, the lobby that is very, very crowded with people who are also arriving a little later than 8:00. There is one x-Ray machine and walk through that everyone must use. The crowd inside had somehow ...without anyone being in charge, and yelling directions... spun itself into a tight little spiral that started in the middle of the room and had about 6 concentric circles all moving together toward the X-ray machine. It was a beautiful thing. The circles kept going and going and going until the last person made it through. Team work!

We enter the holding room which could seat maybe 100 people...which left about 150 standing. Why do people walk into a crowded room and stop at the door instead of moving on into the room and making way for others to enter? Especially when they KNOW there are others to come...they just spent 20 minutes playing round goes the circle in the lobby? What happened to the teamwork?

Never mind...some questions will never be answered this side of Heaven. The lady in charge says she has some good news for everyone. Three of the judges have settled all the cases they had. YEA! 1 judge has not. BOO! Most everyone will be able to leave for good. YEA! But, 75 will have to stay. BOO! She says she does not know where to start the list for the 75...from the top or the middle or the bottom. She goes to ask the judge. She comes back and starts calling names. She calls way more than 75. Then I realize she is calling everyone's name be sure they showed up! Then she starts over...she calls for a while...then stops...and says that we could go if she did not call our name. YEA! She did not call my name. Thank goodness! I am very happy. The 75 people whose name she called are most likely not happy. OUCH! I feel daggers hitting me in the back as I leave!

I made my way back down to the street corner that was not quite as busy now. Then down the street to the church...into my car (parked conveniently in the front) and out onto the street!

Jury Duty..2010...imagine what I could have written if I had had to be there all week!!!!

FYI: For the record...I do not mind having jury duty. I feel like it is part of our civic duty, and goes along with our responsibilities as a good citizen. That being said...every other time I have had it, I have gone everyday, and sat for hours waiting to be called for a case. Never have I been called. But, I have sat there long enough to put away every law breaker in the city. I'm just sayin'.

Sunday, January 24, 2010


I am getting my DINING TABLE CHAIRS on Thursday! Only 13 months since we moved in! NOTE: If you have sat on a stool or a folding chair, or a kitchen chair, or whatever else we could apologies...and an invitation to come back and sit on my new chairs...that are cushioned...and the correct height...and all matching!

Picture of them in place coming soon!!!


I have jury duty this coming week. I really do not mind doing it. I think it is a responsibility we all have. But, it is so annoying to sit and wait and wait and wait for lawyers and judges to work things out. Maybe it won't be so bad this time...we'll see.


Sweet Tara went back to work last week. It's been hard for her to leave the baby, and I can certainly understand that! He's the cutest thing! Joy and her MIL are keeping him while she works. She works with a very kind and understanding group of girls, as well as the I'm sure they will help her get through these hard days. They all work together very well...such a blessing for Tara.


There is a new service available on the internet, and I am passing the info on to you, because I am sure you can use it, too. The site is
This is a service that lists all the doctors, clinics, hospitals in the Wiregrass Area. FYI: The Wiregrass Area consists of: ALABAMA...Dothan, Ozark, Enterprise, Troy, Eufaula*****GEORGIA...Valdosta, Tifton, Albany, Thomasville, Moultrie*****FLORIDA...Marianna, Lake City, Tallahassee. Other cities in this area will be added as information becomes available.

What makes this site different from others, is the ease of navigation throughout the site and the wealth of information in one place. Here you can find all the doctors in a certain speciality, choose the one that meets your needs, and then find out all the info you may need. You can see his address, directions to his office or clinic, education, what hospital he is affiliated with, a picture, other doctors in his practice, and how his patients rate him on about 10 different areas. This is all free of charge and it is also extremely easy to email the info to another party.

The service will soon be available in Miami, Atlanta, Nashville, and the Triangle area of North Carolina.


And, finally, I was just wondering...can you do this?

Friday, January 22, 2010


I think I'll live here...

...swim here...

...visit here...

...take a nap on this...

...worship here...

...have these adoring dogs around me...

...Wear these...

...and these if its cold...

...Oh, and THIS...I'll wear this, of course...

You can join me, if you like! But, the crown is all mine!

Thursday, January 21, 2010


I do not like the cold. That is not news to you if you have read Gatherings for any time at all. And, I do not like a cold bathroom. Big news, huh? Every morning I must turn up the heat in the bathroom before I can go in to get a shower. Because I have a husband who believes that every room in the house needs to be near freezing in order to have a restful nights sleep. He believes it...I don't. However, I let him live with his illusions to keep peace in the home.

I love the Creek House. I am so thankful for the Creek House. I am blessed to be living in the Creek House. But, because of the kind of water heaters we put into the house (and the DH researched it long and hard) takes a few l-o-n-g moments for the water to warm up enough to step in to it. Which is not so traumatic in the spring...or summer...or even fall. But, in the is an uncomfortable state of being!

So, you will not be surprised when I tell you that once I can finally get into the shower, I am sufficiently chilled to the bone...being without coverings and all. And, it takes a good while for my 'self' to warm up once that warm water and I meet!

When I saw this little reminded me of these facts. And, I thought I would share them with you. Not that I think for even a second that it matters one whit in the world if I have a cold bathroom! But, I thought you would enjoy the cartoon...and it just seemed kind of strange to just post the cartoon with out some lead in to it. But, on second may have been just as well.

FYI: I do not do too well on 'float' and 'meditate'........I'm just saying...

Tuesday, January 19, 2010


Right before Christmas, I received a book in the mail. Upon opening the package, I saw it was from an antiques dealer in Savannah. I had purchased several pieces of furniture from him, and also a piece of his artwork.

The canvas I purchased is full of color, and I could see what he was trying to capture as he explained it to me while I was in his gallery. So, I brought it home with me and hung it in the hallway, right outside the doors leading to my bedroom. In the afternoon, the sunshine comes through the bedroom window and hits it in such a way that the whole painting glows.

As I flipped through the book, I was surprised to see my painting depicted there.

There was a picture of the painting, along with a description of what the artist was thinking...

Also included was an inscription from Vincent.

I had recently bought an easel for the library, and this was a perfect place to display the book. I kind of laughed at the final line that said 'from the private collection of Tonja Owens.'

What exactly would be considered worthy of an art collection? I really don't have a lot of fine art. This piece and 2 others are all that I would consider 'fine'. I do have some other original art that I am very fond of. And I have some vintage wooden artifacts that are very valuable to me...and probably only me. Yes, I would consider them art. I have some fabulous photography that is certainly considered art. I also have several artifacts from Africa and South America, given to me by my parents, that would fit in the category also.

So, maybe I do have an art collection. For is mostly valuable only to me. But, that's as it should be, isn't it?

Monday, January 18, 2010


Tomorrow the weather here could reach the low 70's, so I feel very sure our chances of snow in the foreseeable future are 0 to none! Of course, we will have a few more cold snaps, but nothing like before. Probably. Most likely. Which is fine by me! I am not a fan of the cold weather.

So, I'm taking this chance to post some of my favorite snow pictures...and then, some snow jokes. The last one is a little risque...but it is also cute...I hope it doesn't offend anyone. I feel sure it was done in the spirit of fun.

Typical Snowman...

This one's for you, Pop!...

Still, sleepy, snowy, sheep...

A Two-Horse Open Sleigh...

Fido's Freezing...


The Glory of the Lord is ALWAYS on display!



Amanda learns the REAL Edmund...

A Cold-Hearted Burglar

The US Surgeon General told you, too!

Bless their little hearts...and every other little part!

I have no words except, he must have done it for love...
Hope you are staying warm!