Friday, July 30, 2010

A Little Red Paint Magic

So as I have stated in a previous blog I have been bitten by the craft bug. I have a desire to create and be creative. This week my Mother-in-law and I went to a Goodwill outlet here in Nashville. Instead of things being individually priced you pay by the pound...the more pounds you buy the cheaper things cost. So I found this very gold tri-fold picture frame. I am not much into anything gold. Just not my style, but I loved the frame's potential, the detail, and the fact it held several photographs! I am a bit of picture nut! I also thought this little gold frame would be a great way to start small with my new desire to be creative. Plus I was going to reduce, reuse, and recycle and that's always a pretty cool thing.

Here is a few before shots of the tacky gold frame I paid about 75 cents for at the Goodwill Outlet.

I really love the leaf details. Don't you?

Now for the transformation!

My Simple Supplies
Spray Paint

First I removed all the glass from the frame and laid it aside for now. Then I lightly sanded the frame. Just enough so the paint would stick a little better. I added just a thin coat of gray primer, and lastly painted 3 light coats of red spray paint over the frame. Presto my new little red frame!

I cleaned the glass and added in a few of my own photos. We had our family pictures made back in April and I loved so many of them. Thanks Mrs. Kelli Trontell for the beautiful photographs. I have have been looking for a creative way to display several of them at one time, and I believe I found it with this sweet little red frame! Why red you ask? Well I just love bright bold colors!

Checkout the little details now! I was just so happy with my first project, and all it took was a little spray paint so easy!

This is finished product now to just find a place to display it at in my home. (the picture isn't that great! Sorry about that. I didn't think about the fact my kitchen is red, and red on red just didn't work to well.)

Thursday, July 29, 2010

My Journey Through Grief

On March 17, 2010 my family lost someone we all held very dear to our hearts. Today on July 29, 2010 we would have been celebrating My Great Uncle Leo's ninetieth birthday. Losing him is something that shook my world even more than I would have expected. He was such an important force in my life, and I loved and valued him, and I think about him every single day.

Saying goodbye to someone you love is never an easy task. It fills our hearts with a deep sadness, and the loss changes our world forever. It even changes us. Grief is complicated and has a wide range of responses. Grief is mostly focused around the loss of someone with which you share a special bond. Particularly the emotional response. In my case, grief has been focused on the loss of my Great Uncle that stepped in and took interest in my life. Grief can also influence our physical. behavioral, social experiences, and even our spiritual life. Each individual's grief experience is as unique to them as finger prints. Everyone responds to loss in different ways. I want to share my story with you. It's a very personal journey, but I feel it's something that I need share.

This is my story and how I am dealing with missing someone I loved dearly. This is my grief journey and how my spiritual beliefs have allowed me to cope and move forward. This path is one that I am still on, and working though. I just took for granted that my Uncle Leo would always be apart of my world and that my children would grow up with his presence in much the same way that my brother and I had. I know now when I think about that it was a unrealistic hope, and I am thankful for the time my children did have with him. Now it is my responsibility to retell his stories and share new stories to keep his memory in our lives. I have discovered that on the grief path there is no magic formula, no short cut, no easy way out of the process. You must allow yourself time to grieve. Being sad does not make you a failure, nor does it make people or Christ love you any less. Being sad is simply an emotion in life that we feel and walk through. His loss created an emotional wound for me. The wound has been healing, and I believe the experience of grief is transforming in a positive way, but being transformed and changed is rarely a painless process. This particular loss has given me a new vision on my relationship with God and how I should treasure my relationships with the people that I love. Being unafraid to say I love you! God and my faith in Him has been a major healing guide in my personal grief process. My faith has also helped me in facing the reality of my loss and the hope in that this is not the end!!! My belief in Heaven and God is guiding me through the grief process thoughtfully and deliberately. God loves me and he will not forsake me. I have learned to express and release emotions and move forward. Understanding that suppressing grief and not allowing myself to walk through this mourning season with plenty of healing time, could lead to emotional torment and even depression. So allowing and expressing my emotions to God through prayer and allowing my family and friends to walk along side me in the healing process is vital and important to myself living a productive and joy filled life. The death of my Uncle caught me off guard, as did the feelings and emotions that came along with the loss. For instance, I did not fully understand the role he had played in my life and just how much I would think about him every day. Losing him back in March still makes my heartache. Being aware that it is normal to have waves of emotion pertaining to loss, even more so on days where missing the presence of my Uncle is stronger, like on important holidays, birthdays, and even the anniversary of his passing. I am accepting that many aspects of my life have changed. I still think I am finding my way through this first year of grief. Not only has it changed me, it's made me realize just how much God loves me and this amazing and beautiful gift he has given me called HOPE!!! It is extravagant love, time, and hope that heals all wounds!

I just wanted to say in closing that this was a very personal blog about grief and bereavement. Something very close to my heart that I just wanted to share with my readers. Thank you to all my family, friends, and church family for loving me even through all the tears, heartache, and change that has taken place in my life. You have all brought some joy into this season of mourning. Thank you!

Quotes and Scripture that helped me

Grief still has to be worked through.
It is like walking through water.
Sometimes there are little waves lapping about my feet.
Sometimes there is an enormous breaker that knocks me down.
Sometimes there is a sudden and fierce squall.
But I know that many waters cannot quench love,
neither can the floods drown it.
We are not good about admitting grief, we Americans.
It is embarrassing.
We turn away, afraid that it might happen to us.
But it is part of life, and it has to be gone through.

– Madeleine L’Engle

There’s music in a well-lived life,
and melodies remain
each time a loving memory
repeats the sweet refrain.
The song that lingers
in our hearts
becomes our legacy ~
its beauty gently echoing
through all eternity.

Blessed are those that mourn, for they shall be comforted. Matthew 5:4

Brothers we don't want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep: or to grieve
like the rest of men who have no hope 1 Thessalonians 4:13

Such hope never disappoints or deludes or shames us, for God's love has been poured out in our hearts through the Holy Spirit Who has been given to us. Romans 5:5

For I am persuaded beyond doubt that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities, nor things impending and threatening nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8: 38-39

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

The Love of a Granny Sadie!

One evening, I had this crazy ambition to attempt to make fresh fried corn, which, in my opinion, is pure bliss when it comes to the subject of foods. Corn is probably my favorite within the vegetable family. I can eat it just about any way you can imagine to prepare it. So, back to me deciding to make some. While I was in the process of cleaning and shucking the corn, my thoughts kept drifting towards Granny Sadie. Granny Sadie makes the very best fried corn on the face of the plant, that is one thing that I am absolutely sure of. Granny Sadie is one of the sweetest people I know. I am fortunate to have married her Grandson. She has made me feel like part of the family since I first walked though her door, and I am pretty sure that first time she tried to feed me something and it very well may have been her corn. Did I mention that she makes the very best fried corn? Her recipe is very simple, but I am yet to recreate the taste she achieves when cooking it. I think it's some sort of Granny magic secret she uses! What I have learned while attempting to cook her corn is just how pain-staking the process to prepare corn is. My hand was cramping after only cleaning three ears of the corn and I was only preparing six. Granny probably makes more along the lines of fifty or even a hundred at a time. Then it hit me how much love this woman pours into cooking her family a real home cooked meal. It also hit me that I should tell her a lot more often how much I appreciate all the little things (like making fried corn) she does for me. I can't really put into words how much this lady actually means to me. She is such a treasure in this family! My heart is eternally grateful for the love she has shown to me. She has always treated me like I am one of her own grandchildren! She is truly a special kind of wonderful!!! I love you Granny Sadie! Oh, and you make the best fried corn in all the universe!!!!

Granny Sadie with her Great Grandbaby Layla Copeland

Monday, July 26, 2010

Military Wives {America's Unseen Heroes}

What is it like for the wives left behind when the men they love go off to war? Who are these extraordinary women and what do they think about the lives they lead? I can only imagine that being the spouse of a soldier is hard, stressful, and sometimes lonely, which is why the Ladies that marry these men in U.S. military uniform are made of something special. These women are willing to put themselves aside to be what their soldier and families need, and most will tell you it is all worth it. They have an enduring strength, both physically and mentally, that is paired with courage, love and stability. Qualities that come in handy when their soldier comes up for deployment. Deployment means change and sacrifices for everyone involved. I would like to introduce two lovely women who are waiting on their soldiers to return home. Meet Mrs. Marcie Parsons and Mrs. Haley Parsons. If you noticed that their last names match, that is because these two young ladies are sister-in-laws. They married twin brothers SSg James Parsons and SSg Josh Parsons of 2/278th E-Troop out of Livingston, TN. Marcie and Haley said goodbye to their husbands when they where deployed from Livingston in December 2009, and then again from Mississippi February 9, 2010. Their expected return was sometime in December 2010, but the Ladies received some good news that they could be returning some three months earlier than first anticipated. These two military families are not only related, but they also choose to be neighbors, which has allowed Marcie and Haley to form a close and valued friendship while the brothers are overseas. Marcie and Haley both have said that their friendship has been a shining light of support over the past couple of months. These two young wives have showed a unique and rare heroism of their own the past couple of months and that heroism, united with that of their husbands', deserves to be noticed, applauded and appreciated. I just want to, once again, say thank you to these two American families who are making some tough sacrifices in-order to serve this beautiful nation of ours!

Both wives answered a few questions for me about their lives, families, and the men they both call heroes. There is no doubt both of these women are beaming with pride and nothing but love and admiration for the gentlemen they married. I chose a few of their interview questions to share with you all today. I hope you enjoy and learn from what these ladies had to say.


Question: You and your husband met how and when?
Marcie's Answer: We meet years ago back in 98 out in town. We were both taking different paths at that time and never really gave each other a 2nd look!! Funny how things worked out!!

Question: You and your husband met how and when? Did you know when you married him that he would be deployed?
Haley's Answer: Josh and I met in 2007. We were introduced in September, fell madly in love :), engaged the following May, and married on July 26, 2008; When Josh and I married I was aware that there was a chance that he would be deployed. We just weren't exactly sure when that would occur.

Question: How would you describe your husband to someone who didn't know him?
Marcie's Answer: Well,first I would say he is one of the Parsons twin! LOL Then I would say he is the love of my life and is the greatest daddy to our 2 kids that I could have ever asked for. He loves his family. He has served and still is serving his country! He is a hero and is loved by so many!!

Question: How do you stay busy while your solider is gone?
Haley's Answer: The way I have remained busy throughout this deployment is to 'create projects' ha-ha. I have helped my sister-in-law paint her entire house, put in a pool at my own, added decks on to the house, landscaped the yard, and the list goes on. Staying busy was definitely the key to getting through this. It truly has made the time pass so quickly while allowing me to feel a sense of accomplishment.

Question: What is the hardest challenge you face about being an American Soldier's wife?
Marcie's Answer: The hardest challenge would have to be not knowing if he will come home! The worrying! Making sure his son know who his daddy is while he is gone!

Question: Have you as a person changed because of your marriage to a soldier?
Haley's Answer: There are parts of myself that I think have changed due to being married to a soldier. I never fully understood before. Being married to a soldier, you realize just how much they really do sacrifice for their country, family, and other things. I had respect for the military before b/c I have family that has served, but now I have much more respect. I have became a more patient person during this deployment and have also realized that I am much stronger than I thought I ever was or could be

Question: What little things did you take for granted when he was home everyday that you will never take for granted again when he returns?
Marcie's Answer: Well I don't even know where to start!! The saying "You never know what you have got till it is gone" is so true!!
There is so much that you never think about when someone is around all the time! This has really showed me so much!!
I will never take for granted the way he helps me with the kids! The way he helped me clean the house, helped me cook just all the stuff like that.
And I will never and I mean never take for granted the love and the way he would smile at me and the way he would hold me! And there is this look that he would always do that I would give anything to see that look right now!! It's hard when not only is your husband is gone but when your best friend is gone! And to know that, that person may never come home again! :(

Question: What is the hardest challenge you face about being an American Soldier's wife?
Haley's Answer: The hardest challenge for me has been being "alone". Yes, I realize I've not been fully alone due to having family, friends, neighbors, etc. But all of those are not the same as having your husband here at home with you when everyone else isn't around. Not having him here to listen at the exact time something is wrong or even with something is wonderful to share, not having his shoulder to cry on, not having him to pick up after haha, etc, etc. Loneliness, by far, has been the most difficult for me.

Question: What do your children think about Daddy being a soldier? Do they grasp how important his job is?
Marcie's Answer: Haven being 10 now, she understand some of it but not all of it! Heath being 13months now, was only 7 months old when daddy left so really is still to young to understand it! Which can be a very good thing but also a bad thing!!

Question: What do you look forward to the most about his return?
Haley's Answer: I look forward to all the 'little things' when he returns. His voice (from somewhere other than through the headset), his smell, his hugs and kisses, his ability to make me feel 'secure'. I have missed him more than anyone could imagine and it's going to be so nice to finally have him home!

Question: Do you ladies have any advice or encouragement for other wives of soldiers?
Marcie's Answer: Stay strong! Keep praying! Never give up hope! And when he or she gets home don't ever take one day for granted!
Haley's Answer: Just take it one day at a time. Things will change constantly and you can't plan for anything. But you do learn to appreciate the time you have together. You learn to appreciate the little things. Have a positive attitude. Think of it all as an adventure rather than an inconvenience. Be patient and keep yourself BUSY!! Give your soldier support the best that you can. Being an Army wife is an honor and its something that you should be very grateful for. :)

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Sunday Snippet

WWII Veterans Unknown Soldier, and My Grandpa Little

The legacy of heroes is the memory of a great name and the inheritance of a great example. ~Benjamin Disraeli

Tuesday, July 20, 2010

Monster Fun!!!

Today I am taking a little break from the America series that has been my main focus for this month. However, stayed tuned, because there is more to come in that series.

So, this week I discovered something unexpected. I have been bitten by the craft bug. I have not been able to soak up enough of all those amazing creative blogs that are out there in cyber world, which has given me a deep desire to create and be creative. I haven't quite decided what that craft is going to be. I will keep you updated on that decision. At the same time, I thought it would be great to share some of my fellow bloggers every now and then, and show you what they have been up to lately. I would like to reveal Mandee Franee Designs. This single mom of three boys started her craft with her son's holey sock and her creative instinct, which has lead to a business of making the most adorable little sock monsters. Each one has it's own personality, much like the children that ended up loving these adorable little monsters. No two are just alike, which I just love!

You know you want one of these adorable little monsters!!!

Say Cheese!

Besides the sock monsters, Mandee Franee Designs also offers Lens Pets. Lens Pets are a creative way to get those wondering toddlers to look at the camera. Even grownups will find the camera lens more fun...I mean how can you not smile when some creature is sticking his tongue out at you. You can find Mandee Franee Designs on her Etsy shop or follow her on facebook and twitter!

I wanted to share one last photograph with you. I thought it was just to creative to pass up showing you. Isn't this little ladybug just to cute for words? I just totally fell in love with this little monster. The little pirate is my favorite, but the ladybug is for sure a close second! =)

All Picture credits go to Mandee Franee Designs

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Sunday Snippet

We shall pay any price, bear any burden, meet any hardship, support any friend, oppose any foe, in order to assure the survival and the success of liberty."... John F. Kennedy

Thursday, July 15, 2010


Pies were enjoyed long before America even existed, dating back as far as the Middle Ages. Most of those pies however didn't even contain any sugar....YUCK! Apple pie didn't become a patriotic symbol for America until sometime during WWII, when American soldiers coined the phrase "Fighting for Mom and Apple Pie". The Apple Pie reached it's popularity peek as an American icon around 1970, thanks in large part to a commerical jingle and apple companies' slogans to try and popularize the fruit. Thus....'As American As Apple Pie' was born!!!


1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie ( Honestly I just buy mine)
1/2 cup unsalted butter
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
8 Granny Smith apples - peeled, cored and sliced
1/4 cup of Caramel ( My favorite to use is Kraft Caramel Bits)

Prep Time: 30 min. Cook Time: 1 Hr Ready In: 1 Hr 30 Min

1.Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Melt the butter in a saucepan. Stir in flour to form a paste. Add water, white sugar and brown sugar, and bring to a boil. Reduce temperature and let simmer.
2. Place the bottom crust in your pan. Fill with apples, mounded slightly. Gently pour the sugar and butter liquid over the crust. Pour slowly so that it does not run off. Add in Caramel. Place top Crust over gently pinching the sides together. Slice a couple holes in the top crust. To add a richer color to a double-crust brush the top crust with milk or lightly beaten egg before baking. Place Pie on cookie sheet to prevent spill overs in your oven.
3. Bake 15 minutes in the preheated oven. Reduce the temperature to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C). Continue baking for 35 to 45 minutes, until apples are soft. You may need to put tin foil around the edges of the pie to keep them from becoming to dark or burning.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010


When it comes to our nations flag, the exact origin is unknown. However most of us know that seamstress Besty Ross is given the credit by a majority of historians. She is reported to have hand sewn the first flag in 1776, but did you know that it wasn't established as the official flag until more than a year later in June of 1777. The first official flag had thirteen stripes, and thirteen stars in a field of blue. The stars were said to represent a new constellation. The flag has gone though several changes throughout history. Altering the stripes, the order of the stars, the number of stars and stripes, but the colors have always remained the same. The Continental Congress never actually spoke about what those colors represented. In 1782 the Great Seal of the United States first appeared, and that's when colors where explained. Most historians adapted those meanings for the flag as well: white representing purity and innocence, red - hardiness and valor, and blue representing vigilance and justice. Today's flag has thirteen equal horizontal alternating stripes, seven in red and six in white. There is a blue square with fifty small five-point stars arranged in nine offset horizontal rows of six. Fifty stars represent the fifty states, and the thirteen stripes represent the thirteen original colonies. You might be surprised to learn that a pattern has already been drawn up just in case another state is added...can you imagine a flag with 51 stars?

The United States of America's Flag represents so much more than a flying piece of material. Old Glory is a symbol of independence, liberty, pride, hope, patriotism, honor, sacrifice, home, responsibility, and so much more. The flag represents so much that it also has become Americana's signature. I would love to hear from you. Let me know what comes to your mind when you see the Stars and Stripes.

I am whatever you make me, nothing more. I am your belief in yourself, your dream of what a people may become.... I am the clutch of an idea and the reasoned purpose of resolution. I am no more than you believe me to be, and I am all that you believe I can be. I am whatever you make me, nothing more. ~Franklin Knight Lane

Monday, July 12, 2010

An Exceptional Hero

Staff Sergeant Rebecca Thomas has always been a girl confident in her own skin. That is probably why she has no problem paving her way in a career primarily made up of the opposite gender. Women have only been allowed to serve directly in the US Air Force since 1948, when President Truman signed The Women's Armed Services Integration ACT. Still there was a limit of 4,000 women permitted in the US Armed Forces, and only 300 female officer positions. Around 1976, things began to move more forward and women were being accepted on much the same basis as men. SSgt. Thomas began serving in the United States Air Force in 2005. I met this remarkable young woman in my high school years when she and her family moved to my home town. She is the daughter of Southern Baptist Pastor Larry Thomas and his wife Anita. SSgt. Thomas grew up with siblings Jessica and Jeremy. I don't know that I have ever met a family as closely knit as this one. They have something special when it comes to family ties. I am positive the family's heart is overwhelmed with pride at all the things that SSgt Thomas has achieved so far in her life, and I am sure they will continue that cheering as she accomplishes so much more.

When I asked SSgt Rebecca Thomas why she joined the Air Force, she told me she was searching for a change in her life. She turned to the United States Air Force to began making those changes. While Rebecca is a woman with some big dreams, lofty itineraries and little fear for chasing after them, she holds an open mind to bigger and better things. Dreams can kind of change things, so remaining flexible is important to her.She graduated Career College of the Air Force in 2009 in Information Management and American Military University in 2010 with a sociology degree. SSgt Rebecca Thomas is currently deployed overseas where she serves her country as a Client Systems Technician. In other words, computers are her thing. I would describe SSgt. Thomas as a woman following her own heart guided by confidence, spirit, loyalty, and a desire for adventure. She is a strong, independent female with a vast generosity and soft spot for the human race. She is now one of the over 200,000 women that make up around 14% of soldiers actively serving this great country in the US Armed Forces.

Interview With United States Air Force's Staff Sergeant Rebecca Thomas

Question: What made you join the armed forces?
Answer: This is a tough question because it would take more than a few sentences to really explain, but to make a long story short, I wanted a change in my life, a steady job, experience, and to be able to finish school without the insane cost. Probably the most important of those things was the change in life. I didn’t like where I was at in life, didn’t have a whole lot of money to take me to other places in life, so the military was a great way to do just that. And a change it has been!

Question: Do you have any good memories from your service overseas?
Answer: I don’t think I have any just “horribly bad” experiences from my time overseas, but “good” memories are few and far between. The people in Iraq and Afghanistan are extremely poor, have little to no medical care, poor housing, bad water...etc. It’s an extremely sad environment. Not to mention the vast hostility in the country. Not only are the military members not safe, their own people are in the midst of war devastation every day. Living on a base in Afghanistan is different than going outside the gate into the city, though. It’s not the comforts of home, but at least we are fed regularly, have a gym, and are provided different activities that we can take part in to be able to enjoy ourselves a little bit... It’s mostly hard work, but it’s worth it.

Question: What is it like being a female solider?
Answer: When I first came into the service, I imagined it would be strange to be a female in the military. I’ve found, however, that it was merely my lack of knowledge that made it strange. I met more and more females, formed bonds, and learned how to cope with being a female in a primarily male field of service. It’s really not that bad in the Air Force, though. The Air Force seems to treat females with more respect and dignity than other services (probably why there are so many more females in this particular branch). We are “expected” to be able to do the same things as men and we are “expected” to be treated like them. It’s nice.

Question: How do you think people overseas view us Americans in your experience?
Answer: Where I am, they are more accepting than other places. We help with their economy a great deal. Everywhere you go, they are trying to sell something... Most are small businesses where the owner does the selling. And they are GOOD at making sales! lol We also provide jobs for many of them. Every base you go to will have a vast number of Afghani workers working hard to make money to feed their family. We are also providing professional training to the Afghani National Army, which is in great need. Most of them are greatly appreciative. However, it is still a war zone... and as much as we would like to change it (and it’s certainly not everyone), the main reason we are here is “because” they hate us. They don’t want us here for many different reasons. The Taliban is the most popular terrorist group in this area and they hate us. They threaten other local people for either helping or trying to help, which causes many locals to hate us, the constant gun fire and bombs that go off due to terrorist activity are blamed on us, which causes others to hate us. It’s a sticky situation. We need to be here, many want us here, but the ones that don’t make it known in a hard way.

Question: I am sure your family is very proud of you, and I know you guys are all very close. How do you cope with being away from them?
Answer: Oh, the wonders of technology! I have been blessed enough to be in an area that provides decent internet service. I am able to email, facebook, and Skype with my family and friends on a regular basis. Others are not so lucky. There are locations out here that don’t have any internet service but perhaps 1 working network computer that may or may not reach the site they are trying to access...

Question: What frustrates you the most about the American people in generally speaking?
Answer: It’s difficult to put “all” American people into 1 single category of frustration. I love my country and all of its people. However, there are some definite frustrations in relation to being in the military. I am frustrated when people tell me that we are in this war for no good reason and my being deployed is a waste. I understand people don’t “like” us being here, but we are here for a specific, honorable purpose and most of us WANT to be part of it. It’s frustrating when people do not recognize that and believe only what the news tells them. I guess you could say that I am frustrated by people’s ignorance. But again, I can’t say that all American people are generally frustrating in any particular area.

Question: What luxary do you miss most about home?
Answer: I’d say the better question is what luxury DON’T I miss about being home! A bed that isn’t twin sized with a mattress you can see the springs through, privacy in my own home and bathroom, a bathtub I don’t have to stand up in if I don’t want to, cooking my own food or going to restaurants, not having to walk everywhere I go, internet and phone service that actually works the majority of the time, seeing the people I love in real life rather than through a computer screen, wearing my own clothes... lol it’s the little things.

On a personal note I would like to publicly thank SSgt. Rebecca Thomas for choosing to serve this beautiful country I call home. America is lucky to have you. You have so much to offer the world, and I applaud you for bringing all your talents to the table to serve in this time of war. You are truly a stunning human being, my friend, inside and out. Thank you again for allowing me to feature you on Inside My Head. I appreciate the time you sacrificed!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Sunday Snippet (WWII Veterans)

It's Sunday that means it is time for Sunday Snippet here on my blog. Sunday Snippet is where I share a little snippet of my heart a thought, person, thing, short story, dream, poem, quote, or like today a photograph. Today's little snippet of my heart is some family history. Pictured below are my great grandparents and their two sons. My Great Uncle James Leo Little whom I hold very dear to my heart, and my Grandfather Charlie Little. I never had the honor of meeting my Grandfather, but he sure did look mighty handsome in his uniform! Both of these gentlemen served in World War II.

Pictured: James Leo, Ida May, Benton, and Charlie Little

Saturday, July 10, 2010

What You Think Matters!

During the Process of getting the new blog layout set up all of the comments and feed back where deleted! I apologize for this, and want you to know that your input, encouragement, and questions do matter to me. While there is no way to retrieve them please feel free to repost or add new ones!

Friday, July 9, 2010

Calling of A Generation

Private David Ferrill enlisted in the armed forces at age 26 and performed his basic training in Ft. Benning, home of the infantry. There are many reasons that allure a person to consider signing up with the armed forces: signing bonus, assistant funding for higher education, family tradition or even just obligation Private Ferrill, however, felt that he wanted to be apart of what he calls a calling of a generation. He grew up in the small and mostly quiet town of Livingston, TN. Presently, Private Ferrill finds himself serving a term in Iraq. While leaving his family behind is by far the most burdensome aspect of becoming a soldier, he finds positive reinforcement in the bonds created with his fellow soldiers serving alongside him overseas. These bonds continue to evolve into friendships with such devotion that they will endure long after the war has ended.

Even though Private Ferrill will not be returning home from his deployment until sometime in early August, he was still generous enough to do this interview and donate some of his precious down time to allow me to write this blog. Hopefully, you will get some benefit from this glimpse into Private Ferrill's feelings and thoughts as he answers a few of my questions. Find out what he thinks of the news media's depiction of the War in Iraq and what the Iraqi people think of our American soldiers.


Question: Are there any elements to being a solider that have surprised you?

Answer: I didn't really know what to expect once i got deployed. All i ready had to go on was what i had seen on TV and the news. it turned out that it was nothing like what i thought it was going to be. for example, anytime you make a shot, you better be able to answer for that shot and had better exhausted every alternative to deadly force before you made it.

Question: How do you think the people overseas view us Americans in your experience?

Answer: I can't really answer for the rest of the world, although i don't think it is very highly. in Iraq. However I know that every time we drive down the road, the children run to the side of the road and wave like we are a parade coming through. if you ask an Iraqi, they will tell you that they don't trust their govt, the Iraqi police, or the Iraqi army. But they trust an American soldier.

Question: What frustrates you the most about the American People in general?

Answer: I can't say that i have a problem with the American people. Even the people that don't support the war do seem to support taking care of the military. The thing that frustrates me is watching the news back home. I hate the way that the war is portrayed so negatively in the media.

Question: What luxury do you miss the most from home?

Answer: I know this will sound funny but i miss a nice cold glass of milk. The milk that we have here comes in cartons and doesn't expire for like ten years. I don't know how they make like that, but it tastes horrible. oh yeah, and mom's cooking.

Well readers, that concludes our interview today with Private David Ferrill. On a personal note I want to take this time to thank my long time friend Private David Ferrill for answering my questions and dealing with my multiple emails. I appreciate you, and I believe that you are representing The American soldier well with your characteristics of honor, intelligence, courage, and tons of heart. You are the real deal my friend. You are the stuff Heroes are made of.

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Standing Ovation

Most Americans, myself included, are profoundly proud to live in this country. Despite our pride for the country, we still tend to distance ourselves from the war. Whatever the reason, we don't seem to think about it in our day to day lives. We go about our comfortable lives in our self-made little bubbles. Not that we intentionally take on the mind set of forgetting about the war efforts and the truth of the matter is, we shouldn't. The war is not a matter to be swept under the rug, like it doesn't matter or it isn't happening. Whether or not you support the United States war efforts or choices isn't really the subject matter of today. The subject is our troops and the families they so often leave behind. Our soldiers are not robots. They are flesh and blood like you and I. They feel the burdens and the sadness of leaving their families behind. They face fears and deal with emotions on a heightened level. They believe in all the beautiful and good things America stands for and they are willing to do their part to ensure those liberties and dreams. We, the American people, have an obligation to these men and women of the armed forces along with their families to show our support. They have earned our standing ovations with a round of heart felt applause. I encourage you to break away from your bubbles. Remember that there is very much a war happening and those troops need our love! Lets remove ourselves from the mind set of forgetting and lets start remembering how important our troops, their families, and our veterans really are. May I recommend sending letters or care packages, sharing some words of affirmation to a military spouse, or simply hang a yellow ribbon. All in all honor of our women and men in our armed forces. After all the display of vast bravery and sacrifice our troops, past and present, is what makes this country what it is today.

Be sure to come back and visit my little corner of the blogging world more often this month. I have some excellent interviews planned with some of America's protectors and family members. I do so hope you will return to see what they have to say and show a little support to the efforts they are making. What can I say folks, thinking about what the Fourth of July really means sparked my patriotic side!!!

Here are some links on how you can help support our Troops!
Tell Them Thanks
Dog Tags For Kids

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Sunday Snippet

There is nothing wrong with America that cannot be cured by what is right with America. ~William J. Clinton


Saturday, July 3, 2010


I have always been a sort of night owl. I find the night peaceful and relaxing always have. But you know when your the mother of three small children staying up all night is usually not the most intelligent of decisions to make. Yet here I am at 2:08am still awake. So while I was a awake tonight I wrote this little amateur poem about sleep. Enjoy!

In this dark shadow of lonely night,
My thoughts dangerously speed
Mesmerizing my will to rest peacefully
As once again sleep has denied me

Sleep that soothing dwelling
That enchanting place on which dreams reside
Those beautiful, peaceful, spirited dreams
Dreams that dance and fill the dark shadows with light!

As my tired eyes crave that peaceful ,sloom of sleep
And my tired soul pleads for dancing light of dreams

Friday, July 2, 2010

Moral of the Crow

Most of us have read or at least know some of the old Aesop's Fables by heart. Aesop fables are a collection of stories credited to an Ethiopian slave that is believed to have lived in Ancient Greece. Most of this storyteller's fables have a very up front moral education laying between the lines of the well told short stories. Many of these popular, relate-able stories (The Tortoise and the Hare,The Boy Who Cried Wolf, and The Ant and the Grasshopper) are well know world wide. Aesop's Fables are often used to teach small children life lessons. My favorite of this collection is The Crow and The Pitcher.

A Crow, half-dead with thirst, came upon a Pitcher which had once been full of water; but when the Crow put its beak into the mouth of the Pitcher he found that only very little water was left in it and that he could not reach far enough down to get at it. He tried and he tried, but at last had to give up in despair. Then a thought came to him and he took a pebble and dropped it into the Pitcher. Then he took another pebble and dropped it into the Pitcher. At last, at last, he saw the water mount up near him and after casting in a few more pebbles, he was able to quench his thirst and save his life.

I imagine that the crow was very thankful to have found the water. He was also unwilling to give up on figuring out how to retrieve the water. So often, we give up too soon or shut down, because we think we can't figure out the solution. Too many times we allow 'degree of difficulty' to be the deciding factor in whether or not we attempt to overcome an obstacle. Even if we do give it a try and it proves to be difficult, we often walk away with only one or two attempts under our belt. The crow, however, was thirsty and I assume it had traveled a great distance before finding water. When the crow did find the water, it was unwilling to just give up with out a drink. Sticking with it, the crow found the solution. It was neither easy, nor instant, but little by little the crow managed to get a drink of that water in the end. There are always going to be problems surrounding us in the world. They pop up everywhere we turn. These problems arise in our careers, church, marriage, friendships, dreams, school, finances, and beliefs. Some of the problems may never get solved, but the question is how are you willing to approach those issues. Are you going to try once then give up and walk away or are you going to keep trying even if it's little by little? Just how badly do you want the water out of your pitcher!