Sunday, December 4, 2011

Ducky Chrismon to You!

I received a small gift a few days ago from someone special...

A rubber duck that quacks and shines a blue light from its beak.

It's awesome.

I am pretty sure that it was not intended to be used as a Christmas Tree Ornament--but I am.

Let me explain.

I attended a Lutheran Church this morning and they had the congregation hang chrismons on a Christmas tree.

Now, I'm not a Lutheran by tradition, so this chrismon thing was new to me...
(A chrismon is one of a number of Christian symbols intended to represent aspects of the Person, life or ministry of Jesus Christ through a single image, emblem or monogram.)    
I have been missing out on a nice tradition all these years.

Strangely, when I returned home from church, I felt  compelled to hang my yellow rubber duck that quacks and shines a blue light from it beak upon my Christmas Tree.

So I did. 

Yes, I know that a yellow rubber duck does not represent a Biblical or theological concept;

But for life as it is right now...
It could very well be a Chrismon. 

 It reminds me to let it go,
extend grace,
 embrace Truth,
and be eternally grateful for all that is good in life.

(Yes, I get that message from a little yellow Chrismon duck).
Sorry if you can't see it...I guess you had to be there.

Perhaps this quote will help.

That's my gift. I let that negativity roll off me like water off a duck's back.
 If it's not positive, I didn't hear it.
If you can overcome that, fights are easy.

~ George Foreman  

Wednesday, July 20, 2011


Sometimes (okay, I admit, "most times") when I write this blog I really censor who I am and I am very careful about what I say and how I say it.  I do this for three reasons: 

A.  I don't want to offend anyone
B.  I don't want anyone to think poorly of me
C.  I want people to like me

I have to admit that there are people in my life that when I am in their presence my guts get all twisted up and I lose all sense of who I am.  I basically turn into a nauseous, stammering idiot or a stand-up comedian.  (Personally I believe I play the role of the stammering idiot quite well; but I could use some pointers as a comedian...)

Why am I telling you this?  I'm not really sure; but I have been thinking some lately about my need to please others--you all included.  I have often wondered why I do this blogging if I don't feel free to say what I really want to say or say it how I want to say it... I guess I just have hope that one day I will be comfortable enough with who I was created to be and just write whatever I feel led to write.  I can't wait!  I hope it happens in my life time...

Anyway, back to PEOPLE PLEASING....

People Pleasers …
  1. People pleasers take most criticism personally (Yup I do that and then I ruminate about what they  said over and over and over...)
  2. People pleasers feel an extraordinary fear of rejection. (Yup!  Rejection sucks!--I try to avoid it at all costs.  I will do most anything for 'ya if you promise to let me hang around for a while...)
  3. People pleasers have a hard time saying "No" (Like I said in #2 I'll do most anything for you...)
  4. People pleasers find it hard to express their true feelings because they don’t want to hurt others (Oh, we're talking!  I would rather choke on my words rather than speak (or write) them and risk offending...)  
So what is a PEOPLE PLEASER to do? 
Consider the following:
  • Becoming obsessed about what others think about you is the fastest way to forget what God thinks about you.
OUCH!  (and that's all I have to say...)

(I stole some of my information from the following spot)

"The art of pleasing is the art of deception".

Marquis De Vauvenargues

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Sound of Silence

On Friday afternoon my husband and I brought our elderly toy poodle, Sam, to the vet to have him, "put to sleep..."  It was an incredibly difficult event and it affected me far more than I anticipated. 

Sam had been part of our household for many years and had been born with a bad back.  We watched him decline over the past six months and knew the inevitable was coming.  In fact we had cancelled two previous "appointments"  as I was not yet prepared to let him go.

It has been distressingly quiet in our home since he left.  You wouldn't think that a 10# poodle would make much noise... He did some barking, some growling, some sniffing, a lot of licking, occassional cat chasing, and his toenails clicked as he walked across the floor.  But these are not the noises I miss so deeply.

Sam was always a part of my quiet, my solitude, and my thoughtful spots...

I am missing the "sound" of his being, his breathing, his inertia...

The All of him that really had no "audible sound".....the part of him that whispered to me; comforted me.  The part of him that "shushed" my loneliness.  The part of him that told me to "get over it" when I felt anger or resentful.  The part of him that argued with me that I should rest with him when I was tired. 

I miss the quiet of Sam that spoke to my heart...

Silence is also speech. ~Proverb

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Birds & Horses

My husband recently told me that I needed to get back to blogging.  I guess I agree with him.  He seems to think that it is tHEriPeUtiC for me.  And perhaps it is.

However, I have had several people tell me that they enjoy reading my blog, even though they, "can't always figure out what I am talking about"...  I find this a little disturbing and to tell you the truth, it has kept me from posting lately. 

I worry and obsess about what other people think or how someone may or may not interpret what I am trying to say.  But I vow to get over myself and blog despite all you other birds and horses out there...  

 I am going to end this with Birthday greetings to my niece Jenna Ann.     “Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.” 
  ~Dr. Seuss
Happy Birthday!  Happy Birthday!! 
Happy Birthday!!! 

"Did you ever see an unhappy horse?  Did you ever see a bird that had the blues?  One reason that birds and horses are not unhappy is that they are not trying to impress other birds and horses"  ~Dale Carnegie

Saturday, June 11, 2011

In search of...

(breaking the silence)

Tuesday, May 10, 2011



Thank-you Kim!

Saturday, May 7, 2011


Business Card...

(crayons are awesome)

Friday, May 6, 2011


This is a Wordle that depicts Education Concentration #3
Design Measures to Evaluate Learner and Curricular Outcomes

Thursday, May 5, 2011


It isn't pretty, but neither is my writing...

Education Outcome Number Four

"Analyze ethical, political, organizational, cultural, technological, and professional influences on educational systems"

Portfolio Reflection Excerpt...

"As I review my artifact, it almost seems too simplistic; one dimensional. Critical thinking is not a concept that can be understood in one assignment, one class, or from any one individual theoretical framework. I believe that at the time I completed this artifact, I successfully identified the parts that comprised the whole as best I understood it at that time; but, today as I reflect, I see the complexity of the whole and the lines that separate the parts (theory, knowledge, practice, and worldview) are blurred and difficult to articulate.

I am groping for words to express myself as I reflect upon this artifact. It is like staring at a ball of string knowing that in describing it, I will unravel it, and it will no longer be a ball; it will just be a pile of string and I will have ruined it...So in a very superficial manner, I am simply going to pick “fuzz” off this ball of string hoping that what I offer fulfills the course requirements.

This artifact is a simplistic representation examining how the educational trend of critical thinking has been influenced by, “the four levers of change”: Sociopolitical/cultural, technology, healthcare trends and issues, and educational thought.

Briefly & humbly, I offer you my “fuzz”:"

After this the paper is really not worth reading...

15 days and counting,


Thursday, April 28, 2011

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Photomentary. Day 26...

I am finally in the home stretch and I thought I should preserve these last few days of my journey through grad school in a "photomentary"

I am not really sure there is such a thing, but I'm going to do it anyway.  I find myself really out of words.  I've used the best ones up trying to get through school and I find that my creative word cup is quite empty.  So I am resorting to pictures. 

I am counting down now.  It is DAY 26 until graduation. I am frustrated with myself.  Yesterday I wrote a five page paper and failed to hit the "Save As" key and lost the entire thing...(I do confess that a few creative words did come out of hiding for that occasion...)

I feel overwhelmed and isolated.  I sometimes sit at my desk for hours and its a lonely place...  My family understands (or rather has been conditioned) not to bother me when I am AT THE DESK... (or a dire negative snappy, down-right mean, verbal barrage might ensue...)

So for PHOTOMENTARY DAY 26 I give you MY DESK...

The End

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

Happiness is...

Happiness is a little girl and her potato

In my battle for a happy heart I have discovered
that there is NOTHING I need;
only ALL that I want...

Anyone for a 'tator?

Sunday, March 20, 2011

And the Winner is....

Thank you to all to all of you who signed up!

Thank you for reading the blog!

It was a tough process picking the winner...

I had great difficulty keeping up with the magnitude of response!

Just for the record I want to assure each and every one of you that I used a secure and scientifically proven method to select the winner...

I have documentation and four witnesses
(two cats, two dogs...the cats are a little sneaky, but the dogs are quite reliable...)

Drum roll please.......

Congratulations Angie!

I will be contacting you soon and deliver your Oprah style prize!!

Sunday, March 13, 2011


On March 17th I will be celebrating my first year as a "Blogger".

Blogging has really been rather therapeutic for me.
I've discovered a lot of things about myself.
It has been a journey...

(a meandering, back-tracking, one-step forward/two-steps back, crawl, run, fly, fall down/get up, fast, slow, lead/follow, stop, look and finally LISTEN kind of trip)

So I thank each of you for listening to me as I have a tendancy to periodically rant, rave, and make a few inappropriate or downright stupid comments!

In celebration of my first year I am doing a GIVE AWAY!

It will be, "A few of my favorite things" give away.
Just like Oprah!
(not really)

If you would like to be eligible for the drawing you will need to make a comment and just state your name and provide your e-mail address.  It is that simple and virtually painless...

Good luck!


Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Whisper a Prayer

A Whispered Prayer...


"We thank-you that you have provided redemption and healing
throughthe precious blood of your Son, Jesus.

God we ask that you would touch Jenny's body with your healing power.
 God speak life, strength, and healing on her behalf."

I know He hears me even when I whisper...
But I know that I am not always so great
a listener for His response.
The Lord said, "Go out and stand on the mountain in the presence of the Lord, for the Lord is about to pass by."
Then after a great and powerful wind tore the mountains apart and shattered the rocks before the Lord,
but the Lord was not in the wind.
After the wind there was an earthquake,
but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 
After the earthquake came a fire,
but the Lord was not in the fire.
And after the fire came a gentle whisper...
I Kings 19:11-12
Dear Lord,
We know that you reveal yourself in the powerful and the miraculous but I thank you for this reminder that sometimes it is easy to miss you in the bustle of the everyday.
I pray that as Jenny and Luke return today that you pour out an abundant measure of peace
 and a release from the busyness of life,
as they humbly listen for your gentle whisper.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Yahweh Tsuri:::The Lord is My Rock

α’ β  β  ά
"We thank you that you have provided redemption and healing through the blood of your son Jesus."


The God who sees her...

"We ask that you would touch Jenny's body..."

ί α τ ρ ς


"Touch her with Your healing power."

Yahweh Rophe

The Lord Who Heals,

"Speak life, strength and healing on her behalf".


Hearing this, Jesus said to Jairus,
 "Don't be afraid; just believe, and she will be healed".
Luke 8:50

Elohim~El Roi~Yahweh Yireh~Yahweh Nissi~Esh Oklah~El Kanna~Shophet~El Elyon~Yahweh Shammah~Philos

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Pray for Healing...

"We thank-you that you have provided redemption and healing through the precious blood of your Son, Jesus.

God we ask that you would touch Jenny's body with your healing power.  God speak life, strength, and healing on her behalf."


Saturday, March 5, 2011


"Then Jacob was left alone, and a man wrested with him until daybreak." Genesis 32:24

Okay, I am going to keep this short folks.  Mostly because I am very uncomfortable with what I am about to say.  For the record, I don't do stuff like this, I don't say stuff like this. So I am going to quickly set this out there and then slide back into the periphery.

So here goes...

I have ALWAYS struggled with prayer.  No secret there.  And it is not that I don't believe in prayer.  I do.  I do.  I do. 

But I am critical by nature and I have been known to judge the church and religious tradition harshly...

What I've witnessed in church and heard as others share their "outloud" prayers has always fallen flat to my ears and my heart. Nothing but sanitized salutations in my opinion.


Okay, I had to take a break from this.  What I am trying to say is really not coming out well and I am getting too worried about offending people...

Here it is.  Prayer in my life does not exist in the WORD realm.  I wish it did.  I long for verbal eloquence or beautifully scripted prose...but sadly that is not how I am wired when it comes to prayer.  It has taken me a long time to figure this out. 

Since I don't pray like I've historically witnessed others to do I figured that I was flawed, just another short-coming.  So prayer fell into the realm of bowling.  Yes, I said "bowling".  I suck at bowling; therefore, I do not bowl...and since I didn't pray appropriately, I never openly prayed for others.

Well about 2-3 weeks ago, I woke up in the middle of the night (which I rarely do) and felt the oddest emotional, heart-gut wrenching compulsion that I was to pray for Jenny & Luke Norbie.  Now I hardly know either one of them.  I worked with Luke for a short time many years ago and I don't believe that I have ever directly spoken to Jenny.  So this was very odd.  So in the middle of the night I lay in bed weeping, arguing, crying out...for healing, hope and mercy.

A lot of times when I pray out of my heart-gut it is not pretty.  I cry.  I rage.  I stomp my feet.  I do lots of things that I'd rather not let people see or hear...

AND honestly, when I see the FaceBook petitions for prayer I cringe a is just not me.  You know the FB entry that looks like this:

Jane Doe


             3 Like

It is hard for me to wrestle with God on FaceBook and maintain any semblance of dignity.  But then I am reminded that dignity is closely related to pride and we all know where pride got me...

Okay, Jen & Luke need prayer.  AND I am going to embrace social media and take up their cause.  Please check out their CaringBridge site: Click Here 

They are currently in California and asking that a specific prayer be lifted on their behalf.  So this is easy folks you don't even have to invent the words...

"Father God we thank you that you have provided redemption and healing through the precious blood of your Son, Jesus.  God we ask that you would touch Jenny's body with your healing power.  God we speak life, strength on her behalf.  Amen"

I am Stepping down from the podium now...

"Biblical prayer is impertinent, persistent, shameless, indecorous.  It is more like haggling in an outdoor bazaar than the polite monologues of the church"~Walter Wink

(thank-you Mr. Wink)

"And behold, I am with you, and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you untill I have done what I have promised you" Genesis 28: 15

Monday, February 28, 2011

Life is a grindstone.
Whether it grinds us down
or polishes us up depends on us.
-- Thomas L. Holdcroft

Monday, February 7, 2011


It has taken well over a week to thaw my frozen neurons and make an honest appraisal of my icey adventure.

It is as though all I can say is, "Yup, I did it.  I jumped.  It wasn't bad".  This seems to be the extent of my report.  Just can't think of anymore to say.

I don't really know why I can't find more words than that, but really it is all I got. 

When I think about the Plunge what mostly comes to my mind is that I needed "HELP".

I really dislike that word.

My biggest fear going into the Plunge was that I would need help getting out of the water.  I wanted to do it ALL BY MYSELF... 

I was scared that I would be the one floppy 45plus year old woman who they had to chain lift from the water...(really, the thought crossed my mind)

But this needing to do things all by myself... ("I don't need any help, thank-you", "no I got it--I'm good", "really I am okay", "I prefer to it alone"..."I want to do it my way", "STEP ASIDE AND LEAVE ME ALONE!")... tends to get me into trouble.

But I just can't seem to shut it off.  It comes natural.  Just like brown eyes and the sur-name Slagter...

Yes, I needed help and I am okay with it. 

When I jumped into that freezing water all breath left my lungs, the heat sucked out the top of my head and cement filled my legs. 

My mind shouted many bad things all at once and I saw sparkly tiny ice crystals form on the inside of my closed lids. 

And then it happened...

I came to the surface...reaching for help. 

No thoughts what-so-ever about looking needy, or weak, or stupid, or "less-than".

I just did it, as if by instinct...

Perhaps there is hope for me after all...

After the Plunge friends e-mailed pictures from the event.  My friend Lisa snapped this picture.  And it says it all.  Thanks Lisa!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Day 4: Visualization

today's training:  visualization

The timid toe first approach

The conservative but classic jump


Belly Flop...

The Fearless Flying Leap

I just can't decide which approach to take 

Can you help?

Please vote

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Training Day Three

It was another invigorating day of training as I continue to prepare for the Polar Plunge
 Saturday, January 29, 2011

I hope to raise $200 for Special Olympics and I am only $45 away from my goal.

I am a woman of discipline,
hard work and extremes...
(really, I am...)

Yesterday it was my toes,
so today it was my nose!

Just trying to prepare for the chill of it all.

...and in case you didn't believe that the photo above really is of my nose...

Life is either a daring adventure or nothing.--Helen Keller

Tuesday, January 25, 2011



Endurance Training...

I am happy to report that I spent a good solid 30 seconds or so with my toes in the snow today.  It was  very refreshing  and I tolerated it quite nicely.  Saturday's event is going to be a burrrrrr-eze!

And may God bless you with enough foolishness to believe that you can make a difference in this world,
so that you can do what others claim cannot be done.
--St. Francis of Assisi