Oh Those Mondays

cd cover Let Go and Try Again.jpg

Track 2: Mondays. Song type: fun, comical, little bit of country and swing. The Point: Part of Let Go.

So, we had just moved to Germany. We were just barely in our home, complete with borrowed military furniture until our own stuff would arrive. But we were finally out of the hotel on base after almost 3 months. Ah. Life was so very busy at the time, and I didn’t want to get up the next day and do school with the kids, I didn’t want to think about all the to-do’s coming up already, and the weekend was already over. Oh, those darn Mondays!

And so, at around midnight, I began to write about it. I put my complaints to a tune, and as I did, I realized that I needed to let go of my ‘wants’ and see things from a different perspective. One day, I might miss all this crazy busy life has going on. One day, I will be old and frail, I’ll be missing my kids and wishing I could run around checking off the boxes of all the errands I want to accomplish. One day, I won’t have so much to do, and I’ll probably miss it.

Do you complain about what’s going on in your life? Do you need to let go of certain wish-it-could-be’s or if-only-I-had’s? It can be as easy as 1)Pray: talk to God about it, and give it to Him. Let go of the complaints. 2)Try to put in it’s place some gratitude (I’ll be talking about that at the end of this series with the last song, stay tuned!)

To hear the song in it’s entirety, click here!

To purchase the entire album online, click here!

To read the first post about this album, click here!

The beginning of a new adventure


2 years of working in a studio in Germany, preceded by at least 3 other attempts to record this album in the states, and so many small stories of how God brought this about along the way: all to finally be realized just a few short weeks ago while in my favorite place in the world, Siracusa.

Okay, there is the snapshot. Now what am I talking about? I’m talking about my new album Let Go and Try Againcd cover Let Go and Try Again.jpg





I have to pause there and just say a quick prayer: Thank you, Lord, so much for making this happen. It’s all You, and all for You, and all because of You. Amen. and wow…

Now, where was I? Oh yes, this adventure. Well, I’ve talked about writing songs before and I’ve focused in on one song in the past, Soldiers Memories. But now, there’s an entire album of songs that tell you a story. And the story is about Letting Go and Trying Again.

The first part of that story is to recognize that we are all on a journey (I know I am not the first person to say that ever). That journey of life is leading each of us to the end. There are so many people out there that believe the journey ends when you die. That’s it, finished. I hope you would consider that it’s quite possible (I believe firmly it’s very true, not just probable) that our end is just the beginning. We each have a destination, and this journey will lead us there, the choices we make and the paths we decide to take will end somewhere for eternity: either eternity with Jesus…or without.

I was thinking about all this when I wrote the words to the song, The Journey, the first track on this album. My thoughts were mulling over all the crazy unexpected turns my own life had taken. The couple of weeks before, we had just finished digesting the news that we’d be moving to Germany for a few years, got kids passports, decided to leave our sweet dog with wonderful friends, packed up a trailer, and headed back to New Mexico to finish packing the rest of our belongings for this next bend in the road. Along the way, we were able to stop and say hello to a few dear friends scattered now over Texas, as well as my husband’s grandma for possibly the last time. As I thought about all of this, God gave me words to describe it all:

The temporary life, ’cause everybody dies

One day sooner or later

It’s the only guarantee so why do people seem to be

Scared to talk about the future after.

The words continue to talk about all the miles we go leading up to a point: that point, when we die, that we have to give an answer to the Creator, the Lord of all, for what we did along our journey. And there is only one key that will get us into a destination with Him. That is His very own Son, Jesus Christ. Read what He had to say about Himself in John 8-15. He has come to set you free, to give you life, and He’s the only one who can make your journey have meaning.

Then, the little adventures (and misadventures!) along the way have so much more value – I’m so very thankful for the one that I’m on right now.

Goodness Gracious Chocolate Glazed Donuts

So I have a little anecdote/story to share with you from this weekend. It’s pretty personal – and it shows a little of the good-bad-ugly side of myself, so be gracious with me! I hope it does a couple of things – shows you that I’m still learning, just like everybody else; and reminds you to grow a little in graciousness.

GRACIOUS: pleasantly kind, benevolent, and courteous.

I was on my way home from dropping off a friend in the city. We were headed out of town for the weekend to Koblenz, Germany (lovely town, if you ever get the chance to visit). Our purpose was to drop off a friend and crash her parents 25th anniversary party. Good plans, yes? It is about a 3 hour drive from where we live, and I was running a tad bit late for us to get going. I had stopped for gas, and prayed that my family would be gracious with me for the fact we were running late to get on the road.

When I got home, ‘nothing’ was done except a bag of clothes packed for my son. I have to admit, did not act very gracious with them as I began to bark orders and angrily make a quick breakfast (earlier that morning, I had asked my husband to pack a bag for Zeke, make breakfast, take the trash out, and do what he could to help us get out the door when I got back…he heard the first thing at least…I guess). I was sort of ‘over it’ by the time we were halfway to the military base to fill up our gas card funds. We were conversing like normal people and had worked out the fastest way to get back on the road. The hubby ran on the military base (with one simple request from me to please get donuts at the gas station too) while the kids and friend and I waited at the park across the street.

My friend and I even had a good conversation about what these kinds of ‘disappointing situations’ are supposed to teach us. She had her own somewhat similar situation going on with her photographer friend who got the date mixed up for the anniversary party. We talked about how we expect people to be gracious with us, but fail to extend the same graciousness for their failures and forgetfulness. Hm. Then we prayed, and the car pulled in right then to pick us up and get back on the road. I got in, and looked at the box of donuts: they were the wrong kind. They were not the kind of donuts I like at all.

And so began again my frustrations with my husband. Poor guy – those donuts just made me think of how much ‘he didn’t think about me’ (even though I was completely overlooking the fact that he had waited on me to get home, he had packed our son’s clothes, he was trying his best: and he did buy the donuts! No, for me, it wasn’t enough and I was mad. Didn’t he know I only liked the plain hole-in-the-middle glazed donuts? None of this custard-filled chocolate icing crap! I wouldn’t eat one and I wouldn’t speak to him. (yes, folks, this is the point where you can shake your head and say, good grief! this girl is ridiculous!)

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Coming Back to Surrender, part 2

God Works it in you…

“God does not ask you to give the perfect surrender in your strength, or by the power of your will; God is willing to work it in you.”

Philippians 2:13 says ‘For it is God who works in you both to will and to do for His good pleasure.’

“God comes and offers to work this absolute surrender in you. All those searchings and hungering and longings that are in your heart, I tell you they are the drawings of the divine magnet, Christ Jesus. He lived a life of absolute surrender, He has possession of you; He is living in your heart by His holy Spirit. You have hindered and hindered Him terribly, but He desires to help you get hold of Him entirely.”

“And if you come and say: ‘Lord, I yield myself in absolute surrender to my God,’ even though it will be with a trembling heart and with the consciousness: ‘I do not feel the power, I do not feel the determination, I do not feel the assurance,’ it will succeed. Be not afraid, but come just as you are, and even in the midst of your trembling the power of the Holy Ghost will work.”

“I ask, what has God promised you, and what can God do to fill a vessel absolutely surrendered to Him? Oh, God wants to bless you in a way beyond what you expect. From the beginning ear hath not heard, neither hath the eye seen, what God hath prepared for them that wait for Him [1 Corinthians 2:9-12]God has prepared unheard of things you can never think of [Ephesians 3:20-21]blessings much more wonderful than you can imagine, more mighty than you can conceive. They are divine blessings. Oh, say now: ‘I give myself absolutely to God, to His will, to do only what God wants.’ It is God who will enable you to carry out the surrender.’


all quotes from the book Absolute Surrender by Andrew Murray…150px-Andrew_Murray.JPG

I Keep Coming Back to SURRENDER

I don’t know if I will ever stop coming back to Surrender. And I promise, I’ll be getting some blogging on our Israel trip back in February done, I’ll keep up the music news, and whatever other things are on my mind. But I think this will become a serious theme of this blog. And I want it to be a re-occuring theme in my life. As I’m reading that book ‘Surrender’ I talked about a couple of posts ago (go HERE for that) I picked up another book that’s been sitting on my shelf for a while: ‘Absolute Surrender’ by Andrew Murray I have an older copy of it, given to me by dear friends in North Carolina long ago, and the front cover is falling off. But even though he wrote the book in 1897, over a hundred years ago, the words still ring so very true now. Here’s what happened in my journal as I read, and the quotes that jumped out of the pages right to my heart this morning:

April 2, 2016

(more words on surrender – these from Andrew Murray’s book “Absolute Surrender”)

“…your God in Heaven answers prayers which you have offered for blessing on yourselves and for blessings on those around you by this one demand: Are you willing to surrender yourselves absolutely into His hands? What is our answer to be? God knows there are hundreds of hearts who have said it, and there are hundreds more who long to say it but hardly dare to do so. And there are hearts who have said it, but who have failed miserable, who feel themselves condemned because they did not find the secret of the power to live that life.”

Oh, Lord, when will I ever not be in the last category, and be able to say with confidence that I’m part of that first group?? I ask You to please open my eyes. I’m reading Your Word (not as much as I could be, but I am reading it), I’m reading these books by godly people who are expanding on these truths I want to see alive in my life – Surrender, Absolute Surrender, Let God Guide You Daily

– and I am afraid I’m not changing or going to change. I’ve got all this head knowledge I’m gaining, but I want to read for HEART change! My soul screams it! I can’t even write fast enough to tell You how I feel about these frustrations. Jesus, I want to be completely surrendered! I want to stop failing all the time! Oh wretched person I am, who will save me from this body of death!!

Almost comical, I pick up the book to keep reading, I glance at the back cover, and this is what it says:

“Every ardent Christian aspires in his innermost being to enter into a successful, intimate relationship with his Lord. Yet, it seems impossible at times. The surge of emotional fervor that often buoys up a believer as he leaves a Spirit-filled service just as often leaves him frustrated and defeated a few days later.

Well, that can’t get any closer to how I feel.

“I have a pen in my pocket, and that pen is absolutely surrendered to the one work of writing, and that pen must be absolutely surrendered to my hand if I am to write properly with it. If another holds partly, I cannot write properly.”

Lord, I want to be Your pen. I don’t want to share the power to command my life. I want You in full control – why don’t I then Let Go??

…..if these words strike a chord in you, reader, then come back next time for the rest of the words I want to share from Andrew Murray’s book, mixed with my own thoughts and prayers. It’s not a light subject: this thing of surrender. But I believe it’s the key, it’s the vital piece so many of us are missing. And if you’ve never considered surrendering to God, I hope it pricks your mind to consider such a bold step.

Army Wives, 173rd version

You probably heard about the show Army Wives that aired from 2007-2013. As an army wife, there were things about that show that made me laugh, that I agreed with, that made me cry. And then, of course, there were plenty of things that made me shake my head at how Hollywood can really take something too far – but I bet you’ve never heard of The Battle Hard wives of the 173rd.

Maybe one day, you will. Maybe one day, we’ll share our stories for the world to see. I know that long ago, in my introduction and reasons for blogging, I said I wouldn’t be naming my military appreciation by name, but this time I have permission. I won’t share all their names – the first wives I encountered in Italy many years ago. But at least one hero among them: her name is Colleen Wood.

In the lives of many army wives, this woman’s name will always be held in a place of honor. If there was a purple heart for keeping spouses sane, caring for single soldiers, running amazing FRGs, holding the hands of newly arrived ladies in the face of uncertain and difficult deployments, making difficult phone calls to the states, and later continuing to carry the banner of support years after her duties are fulfilled, I have to be completely biased and say there is only one FRG leader that would take all. And how does she do it? And still be mom to 3 boys, love and support her husband, be a teacher and friend, and balance life’s ups and downs? I don’t know, maybe she’ll write a book one day and tell us🙂 One token that she has contributed recently was by starting a journal for The Battle Hard Wives for us to remember that very uncertain deployment to Iraq, now over 10 years ago.DSC02658.jpgI’m the latest Battle Sister to have this priceless journal in my living room. I’ll be adding stories of my own to our thoughts, reflections, tears, encouragement, rants, and whatever else comes out of our hearts and fills the pages, after some of those feelings have lain dormant for a while. When Colleen first took the time to reach out to us all, get the wives connected again, and set out on her mission of a joint journal, I did not really understand how important and impactful this will be. We went through a life changing event together: sending our husbands and loved ones on a deployment that began with the first jump into combat for the 173rd since Vietnam, with so many unknowns in being part of the initial invasion that our need for each other was stronger than our military connection had already begun by already being stationed overseas. We relied on each other so much in those 13 months. And now, we are remembering.12295478_10208420553731345_6430159626114761740_n.jpgColleen Wood, I hope you know how much of a hero you are in our hearts: and I hope we can let you know how much we appreciate all you’ve done and continue doing by sharing our stories and reaching out to others with the same care.


Well, hi! It’s been a while! I’ve been busy with family, travel, and trying to get back into the swing of ‘normal’ life.

So to get back to blogging, I think I’ll start with this, a seemingly random post, but a story I’m walking lately, and have been for a while. Then I’ll bring you all up to speed on my travels and happenings, music news upcoming and what-not, as I get back to writing, with the intermittent good read for reflecting🙂


The book I’m reading right now, Surrender by Nancy Leigh DeMoss, says where my thoughts are and where I want to be the best. So the rest of the words of this are hers, not mine:

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Necessary Tension

Source: Necessary Tension

Thanks, Kevin, this describes my walk right now, and what I’m striving for. Just had a talk with my daughter about contentment in who God made us and what He gave us, and I personally feel the tension of life: and it’s good, and it keeps me growing. Like you said, we’ll rest in heaven, amen!

Christmas is over. Now what?

I don’t think I read any blogs over the Christmas season. But with good reason. I had my parents here with us for 2 weeks, and we had a wonderful time with them. Lots of laughs, food, fun, Christmas markets, etc. But Christmas is over. I sat for the first time in weeks to read a few blogs. Two of the blogs I follow that I read this morning I think are wonderful for a ‘re-set’ or ‘re-focus’ after the time off for Christmas. So I recommend you check out:

http://devotedlife.net/2015/12/28/trusting-an-engineer-dec-28/ as he reminds us of the place that God should take in our intellect and faith.

and http://gracemusing.com/2015/12/27/17-lessons-i-learned-from-christian-books-in-2015/  to apply what that means to our lives, and practically live more mature, God-led lives.

And from me? I’m just thanking God for His un-ending goodness, as Psalm 143 spoke to me about on December 19th (here’s my thoughts from that day):

Psalm 143: “Hear my prayer, O Lord, Give ear to my supplication! In Your faithfulness, answer me, And in Your righteousness. Do not enter into judgement with Your servant, For in Your sight, no one living is righteous. For the enemy has persecuted my soul. He has crushed my life to the ground; He has made me dwell in darkness Like those who have long been dead. Therefore, my spirit is overwhelmed within me; my heart within me is distressed.”

Lord, before my parents got here, I had been feeling a bit of distress – a bit of darkness. I know You speak to me, but sometimes I feel nothing from You – and I know it’s the enemy blinding me. Please keep me close to You in a way I feel You – so I don’t become overwhelmed, no matter what is going on.

(v5) I remember the days of old; I meditate on all Your works; I muse on the works of Your hands.”

The days of old – I have my notebook here where I’ve been writing my married life story. It has it’s points in it, coming up, and not yet written, that are saddening to think on. But there are so many other moments, days, journal entries, miraculous events, that remind me of how God is in my life: my Lord, Creator, and Savior loves me and cares for me.

Then I look up and out the window at God’s majestic works of His hands. The silhouetted trees with the carefully detailed grey hills behind – as it slowly climbs out of shadow to a purple/grey hue, fog beginning to lift, and the outline of trees layered behind trees beginning to be visible. And as the sun is slowly climbing, the place where the blackened tree line on top of the hill is now accented by the warmest golden lines that blend into an ever-changing band above of pink, beige, faded purple, and then the light cloud-line that leads to a crisp morning blue. Some of the colors I can’t even describe – or they last just a few moments before the Great Painter has set in motion the next part of the scene of a single day’s sunrise. And this is just one minute masterpiece in an abundance of beauty that the Master is orchestrating in a single moment.

Yes, I meditate on all Your works. I muse on the work of Your hands.

I don’t know what kind of year you had. I don’t know what is in your future, or mine. But I know Who holds the future, and I know He wants to be a part of your life. If after reading the blogs I read, and my own thoughts, you feel drawn to know Him, start your new year with new life: talk to Jesus – it’s simple. Ask Him to come and be the Leader of your life and make you new.


Christmas Concerts

This year, we are looking forward to seeing the Sound of Music, go to a Christmas Circus, and attend the Nutcracker – but another big highlight for me is getting to be on the other side of the scene – it’s been a very special and honored privilege to take part in putting on a couple of Christmas Concerts. And not just that, these are concerts with a purpose.


The purpose has been two-fold: to support a group called Kainos, and to provide those who would attend in support of that Human Trafficking Awareness organization with lovely, relaxing, and meaningful Christmas music.

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