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carol@inkwellcoaching.com

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February 18, 2021

One of the Healthiest Fruits on the Planet

We are on week #33, counting down with my expectant friend. As some of you know from experience, she is getting pretty uncomfortable. My prayer for he

February 11, 2021

Fun with Jicama

At week #32, baby is a jicama in size. That’s right, a jicama. Starts with a J and sounds like an H. Jicama is a globe-shaped root vegetable with pa

February 4, 2021

Sumo, Coconut, and the Birth Month

If you’re an orange lover, I have some REALLY GOOD NEWS! The Sumo are here. Sumo oranges, that is. I wrote about them last year. If you missed that

January 28, 2021

5 Reasons Why Your Snack Bar May Not Be Your Friend

In a recent conversation, the topic of cereal/granola/protein bars came up. They appear to be a healthy snack, especially for a very busy person who i

January 21, 2021

Getting Back on Track

Baby size at 29 weeks is a butternut squash. And, like last week’s eggplant, butternut squash is technically a fruit. Since I wouldn’t care to eat

January 14, 2021

The Surprising Truth about Eggplant, and a Recipe

A large eggplant. That is the vegetable size of a baby at week #28. Oh, but wait just a minute. An eggplant is actually a FRUIT because it grows from

January 7, 2021

My Least Favorite Vegetable and a Challenge

At week #27 baby is the size of… …a head of cauliflower. Most of you know that I do not care for this vegetable. I’ve tried. Truth is that cauli

December 31, 2020

Cheers to Scallions and a New Year

At week #26, baby is the size of a scallion. The first question that popped into my head is: What’s the difference between a scallion and a green on

December 24, 2020

The Hope and Excitement of a Baby

A bit of background for my new readers: I’m taking the produce journey along with my good friend who is expecting. As we track the progression, we l

Some Things Never Change

 

There are days when I am sad about the governing in our world today, at every level.  How many times do I think, “How could this be?” and this is usually followed by another thought like, “God, what are you thinking?”

It is at this point that I am often reminded that so many things in life are beyond my control.  We are called to be faithful disciples and serve others the best we can.  We are called to love.  None of this is really about me.  I am not in charge.

So today, God set me straight.  He spoke to me quite clearly through the scriptures of 1 Samuel 8, found in the Old Testament.  Keeping in mind that I am not a theology major, here is the story in a very brief nutshell.  The people of Israel asked Samuel for a king, as he was up in years and his sons were not considered as an option to move up the food chain.  (They had their own issues:  they had accepted bribes and perverted justice, which was not acceptable behavior.)   Samuel was aware that the request for a king was a direct slap in the face of God, who protected them, loved them and was indeed, their Sovereign King. When Samuel checked with God about this, God reminded him that this was not a rejection of Samuel, but of God.  Samuel was instructed to warn them about the consequences of having a king, as the surrounding nations had kings, but to give them what they requested.

Samuel did exactly as he was told.  He spoke truth about how life with a king would be.  Bottom line:  not so rosy.  Life would be more difficult for them.  Even after Samuel spoke these words, “…you will cry out for relief from the king you have chosen, and the Lord will not answer you in that day.”  (From 1 Samuel 8:18 NIV)

Guess how the people responded?  They still wanted a king.  Samuel repeated this to the Lord, who answered to give them what they wanted. 

We must be attentive.  We must understand that our ways our not His ways.  We must trust.  And sometimes, we must feel sad.

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for men, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward.  It is the Lord Christ you are serving.”  Colossians 3:23-24 NIV

And Now for 2012…

I have just returned home from a ten-day vacation.  Four days of it were spent in a van with my husband, two sons and the family dog.  We visited family in Tennessee and Florida.  No, I did not return home with a tan, as it was a bit chilly in the land of alligators!

Since I had so much time to think, I did.  I have been challenged to come up with three themes for 2012.  These are different than resolutions, which most of the time are forgotten by March.  These, to me, are more of a mindset for change.  As we look to each new year for a fresh start and continual growth, what are a few ways we are able to improve?

When I mulled this over, I came up with these themes to work on.  1.  Be prepared.  What a concept!  I heard it in Girl Scouts and it is a great idea.  If I don’t plan each day, someone else will.  “Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity.”  (From Seneca, the Roman philosopher)  2.  Think service.  Whether I am at home, in a business situation, or anywhere in between, what is it I can do to better serve those around me?  3.  Seek wisdom.  I recently met a man who is very wise.  He became this way by seeking wisdom on a daily basis.  I was so impressed, that I have joined his mentorship program.

So, here I am, back in real life.  Christmas decorations must be stored away, laundry needs to be done, and of course, there is nothing in the fridge.  Welcome Home!  We enjoyed special family time and plenty of fun and laughs.  And yes, it is good to be home.  Many blessings to you in the year ahead.

“Life’s not about perfection, life is about progression.”  Keith Kochner

Check out www.mentorshipmastery.com for more info on Keith Kochner and his mentorship program.

A Day with Hunter

 

My family and I spent a wonderful day with my nephew, Hunter, and his parents.  He is two and one-half.  He is very busy.  We gifted him with a couple of very educational toys that were sure to please….him, not his parents.  The gifts?  Band in a Box, and tools with a battery operated (and noisy) screwdriver.  I am certain we are his new best friends and my sister-in-law’s worst nightmare.  Hee hee!

We shared meals together, relaxed until Hunter took a nap to recharge, hiked through the woods, and enjoyed the day.  It was a simple day of just being together.  As I spent time with this little guy, I was reminded of the days long gone of looking after my boys.  Yes, Hunter is a busy kid, but it was refreshing for me to spend some time experiencing his simple joy.  He loves to be with his parents and learn more stuff.  He has great manners and is warm and loving to others.  He starts each day fresh and is not hung up on the past.  Perhaps he is a great example to all of us as we approach a new year. 

Of course, it makes sense to think about the past year and look at those things that we could improve upon.  It makes even more sense to then let those things go by forgiving ourselves and moving on.  Life is about progression, not perfection.  If we look at the growth we experience year to year, hopefully we will see changes in a positive direction.  Whether it is physically, spiritually, in our relationships, or any aspect of life, it is about getting better at finding the balance, the harmony. 

So, at the end of the day and the year, I am grateful for my blessed life and my family.  I am grateful for lessons that find me each day.  I am grateful for another opportunity to try to figure out this journey of life.

“To understand is to forgive, even oneself.”  Alexander Chase    

It’s All in Your Perspective

 

I was in a grocery store line this past week, waiting to check out.  As usual, I followed my list and remembered a few other items along the way, ending up with a fairly full buggy.  Why does it seem as though we always need more food in the house?

Behind me in line was a woman and her husband.  They had a very full buggy.  She commented to me that it looked as though we would both be doing the same thing—feeding our families for Christmas.  I smiled and nodded.  She then proceeded to tell me that she had been doing this for 50 or so years, and that it should be someone else’s turn!  With three grown children and lots of grandkids, she had done her time with the Christmas dinner.  Oh, and why would they even want to come to her house, since they all have much bigger homes with lots of  room?  Her home is tiny in comparison. 

Perspective.  I suddenly recalled wonderful memories of returning to the home where I had spent lots of my growing-up years.  It was a spacious farm-house in the middle of corn and bean fields.  My favorite thing to do when I went “home,” besides eating my mom’s wonderful meals, was sleep.  It was so quiet and peaceful there in the country.  I could totally relax.  As my family grew to include a husband, children and dog, they felt the same sentiments.

So, I felt compelled to let my new acquaintance know this.  The reason her children liked to come home for Christmas was because it was comforting and safe.  How wonderful to have that relationship, when many families are at odds and may not even be speaking to one another.  Yes, it is lots of work to cook for a house full of people who probably need a nap after dinner.  My suggestion to her:  Let them know how happy she is that they can be together, and ask early on for help in the cleanup.  How many times would there be less misunderstanding and feelings of resentment, if we would only ask for what it is we need?

When a situation gets on your nerves, try turning it around to a positive.  Maybe it’s not possible, but maybe it is.  Decide to enjoy the people you love, because it is a choice we make every day.  God Bless~

“We all have the power to give away love, to love other people.  And if we do so, we change the kind of person we are, and we change the kind of world we live in.”   Harold Kushner