Friday, January 30, 2015

We've Gone & Come Back

We've spent the last week in El Progresso, Honduras.
Amy and I worked on a Childrens Bible School Team.  5 different churches, a Boys Home & the International school were our locations.  100's of children ~ gave/received hugs, heard the gospel, sang, did crafts, ate candy & played games.
Greg was on a construction team that layed a tile floor in a church sanctuary.  They put in long hours at this church ~ laying the tile and leveling each tile on the uneven concrete slab floor.
We got home about an hour ago.  Got the firstload of laundry in the washer.  Downloaded the pictures to the laptop.  And just about ready to sleep in my own bed ~ yay!

Sharon, Denia, Amy & Mirna~


Thursday, January 22, 2015

Throwback Thursday Pictures

I dug in the family archives to find these jewels ~ memories from my childhood!

David, Brenda, Sandy, Donna (my grandmother made our dresses)

cousins Buzzy & Sandy

Its me!

Julia & me

Hey its my sister in law ~ Sabrina

Sandy, MaMa & me celebrating our September birthdays!

at Lake Spivey with the Vinings

me & Julia

Hunting eggs ~ mom, Brenda & me

Greg, Brenda, me, Sabrina ~ her 1st birthday!

Brenda, me, Amanda

my kindergarten graduation dress made by my grandmother

my Papa, Roy White

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

He Numbers Our Days

The Lord knows the number of days we will have on this earth.  He knows how we will perish from this life to eternity & He knows where that eternity will be spent.   Sometimes we have a time when we know the end is near and sometimes the end is sudden.

The beginning of December, my Uncle was diagnosed with Liver Cancer.  The Lord decided his passing would be quick ~ on the morning of December 24.

2 years ago, my Aunt had a stroke and has been plagued with health complications ever since.  Her passing into eternity was early this morning.

My cousins are dealing with the loss of both parents, less than a month apart.  My Aunt & Uncle leave behind ~ 3 children, 6 grandchildren, and 4  great grandchildren. 

I know we will all be reunited one day.  They are in the presence of the Almighty Creator of the Universe!  What a joy to know that!

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Essential Oils Start

So I did lots of research on Essential Oils.  I read several books ~ thanks Amazon prime!  I've been on numerous blogs and of course searched through Pinterest.

I found lots of information, and lots of fantastic claims (could be realistic claims, but some sound inflated).  Most people who write are also sellers of a particular oil brand so they claim, theirs is the best, the safest, the most reliable, the purest, etc.....but they are also earning money to say this and try to sell their brand ~ marketing. And friend of mine started selling a certain brand ~ but she just told me to be careful what I order and make sure its pure ~ best tip I got!  I've been on Young Living, Doterra, Frontier Products, Amazon, and Aura Cacia.  And visited our local natural store ~ Rainbow and been to Whole Foods.

I've even contacted a couple of companies directly to ask specific questions about labeling, purity, etc.  I got 2 very nice, prompt email replies from Aura Cacia concerning their oils.

I ended up buying a multi bottle set off Amazon ~ lavender, orange, tea tree, eucalyptus,  peppermint, and rosemary.  They ended up being about $4 a bottle.  100% pure, undiluted, essential oil.  The eucalyptus may be the only one I can't use because of allergies but I will have to see.  Then I've gotten separate bottles of frankincense, grapefruit, lavender, lemon, helichrysum and citronella.

So what to do with these?

*We are going to make some outside candles using the citronella.
*Lavendar for some body products for me ~ I love the scent.
*Lemon, Orange & tea tree for cleaning products.
*Lemon, peppermint & grapefruit (2 drops each) in either a capsule or ice water are a good diet aid.....diuretic for sure.  I put them in the water.
*Helichrysum on a cotton ball overnight in ear for ringing ~ pesky side effect from Meniere's.
*Frankincense behind the ears and down the neck for dizziness ~ yep, it seems to work.

There is a huge amount of information and "recipes" available for different blends & mixes to fill your needs.  I told Amy we were gonna brew some soon ~ she wants to use a black cauldron, ahhh, what an imagination!

To me using the oils to help with things would be like using herbs ~ we use Red yeast rice capsules for cholesterol, and I use natural progesterone cream and black cohash capsules for menopause (yay for growing older!).

2 books I like are ~

"Surviving When Modern Medicine Fails" by Dr. Scott A Johnson
"Healing Oils of the Bible" by David Steward PhD

In the book by Dr. Johnson, he gives specific oil blend recipes for specific ailments/conditions/concerns.  Meniere's is specifically listed.  My thyroid condition is specifically listed (although I wouldn't want to try without dr. approval since I have a prescription for this), and other things.  Plus common ailments like upset tummy, headache, allergies, etc.

In the other book, Mr. Stewart takes an in depth look at the oils listed in the Bible, their uses, where they came from, how they got from one country to another, and where in the Bible you can find these references.  Its an interesting, informational, historically & religiously based book. 

And then there is Pinterest ~ a plethora of information ~ facts & opinion.  If someone or a company is making a chart for everyone ~ the information is helpful, but they are ultimately trying to sell you their product ~ not to be too cynical but being honest.  An interesting post I read was entitled something like "why I am not using just one brand" or something like that.  I think mine are 3 or 4 different brands ~ reviews, size and cost had a lot to do with the decision.  The bottles are tiny about a 1/2 ounce ~ but you use the products by the drop. 

And I am not selling any product or books ~ just sharing what I have learned! 

Monday, January 12, 2015

Keeping My Hands Busy

Some projects I finished stitching on last week and this weekend ~

Smocking on an "Amy" jumper pattern

Smocking on a Bishop Dress

sleeve of the Bishop

finally finished my Quilt & Birds Cross stitch
The smocking plate is from an old "Australian Smocking" magazine.  It was adapted from the original.  The jumper is about an 18 months size and the bishop is a size 4.

Thursday, January 8, 2015

What to Pack

What to pack for a Mission Trip ~ Overseas

*A prayerful spirit, good attitude, joyful expectation
*Your smile ~ it can leap over any language barrier if its genuine
*Your Bible, either the actual book or an ereader version ~ mine is on the kindle

Now for the practical stuff

*money to exchange for local currency
*prepackaged snacks for your daily backpack
*Bug spray, bite cream
*allergy medication, Tylenol, vitamins, prescription meds
*lightweight blanket (some places don't have covers & the air conditioner setting are 2 ~ off & on)
*large towel (theirs are small)
*comfortable shoes, more than one pair ~ it could rain!
*a rain jacket & umbrella
*a personal backpack ~ easy to carry and leaves your hands free
*an extension cord, and any chargers for electronic devices
*something to do for "down" times ~ cross stitch, reading, game to play, craft, etc.
*tiny first aid kit ~ moleskin, band aids, Neosporin, gauze pads
*treats/gifts for your interpreters
*camera, extra batteries or the charger (very thankful for digital as opposed to rolls of film!)
*hand sanitizer & wipes.....lots of wipes
*travel size personal items ~ shampoo, conditioner, makeup, soap, deodorant, toothpaste, etc.
*sunscreen & hats ~ the warmth is awesome, the suns rays can be brutal
*light weight, comfortable clothes, mix & match items are great

What to leave at home

*your ego
*any preconceived notions
*your agenda

We are very excited to have this opportunity to serve the Lord in Honduras ~ again!  2 more weeks!

Wednesday, January 7, 2015

My Rant for the Day

We enter the fair every year for the fun, for the ribbons, and for the commission attached to each ribbon.  By commission I mean that each item in each category is worth so much $$ depending on whether its a blue ribbon or a red ribbon.  It is very fun to go to the fair and see the stuff displayed and see what ribbon your items were awarded.

If you have the most items with the most blue ribbons entered in the fair ~ you earn an extra $$.  This year and last, Amy and I had the most.  Her for the youth category and me for the adult.

The checks usually arrive in November.  Last year we received them in December.

This year, they told us in November it would be Dec.  Then they told us after the first of the year.  Today, they said a couple of more months.  So shouldn't they have told us when we entered that there could be a delay or that there would be a delay?  (The State started using a new "banking" system)


We follow all sorts of rules to enter.  Jump through many hoops to have everything just so.  Some of the fair folks have been downright nasty and negative about some of the entries that don't suit their "tastes".  But we've continued to do it because of the reasons listed in paragraph 1.  You have 1 day to drop your items off ~ and by 1 day, I mean about 8 hours. (thanks Angel!) Pick up is 1 day, about 5 hours. 

If we were only talking $20 or so $$ then maybe I wouldn't be so aggravated.  But its almost $300.  Amy's is over $200.  That's a chunk of change.

SO, they may not see me next year.  And I've heard that others feel the same way.  If 6 or 8 of us don't enter ~ its gonna be slim pickin's in the craft categories next fall at the fair.

Hummmmmm, if they are so fond of MY money, how 'bout we just subtract that amount from any tax money due the state on April 15th?  No, I would be the one who go penalized and fined for not paying on time. 

Rant over ~ but still fuming! 

Tuesday, January 6, 2015


Andy & AmyKate with their Yoda coffee mugs Greg made them

tea set for one of my little buddies

barrel coffee mugs for my nephew

cross stitch for my nephew Ben, who achieved Eagle Scout last year

my speckled salt & pepper shakers

cow canister for my sister

pig canister for my mom

Monday, January 5, 2015


Somewhat like Meniere's Disease, at times. Can't tell you how many times I've jokingly said "who installed that new wall while I wasn't looking" after running into a wall.

Well, my vertigo, dizziness, unbalance, etc. has been diagnosed.  Its a form of Meneieres Disease.

Through my research I've found, it affects people usually between the ages of 40-60 ~ I am at the closer to 60 end of that spectrum.  Usually one ear at a time ~ mine is the right.  But in about 1/2 the folks, could go to other ear also.  They don't know what causes it but its an inbalance of a special fluid in a canal in the inner ear. 

It could come and go ~ it could come, worsen, and cause permanent damage.  Symptoms ~ vertigo, unbalance, ringing in ears, and heaviness in ear.  I've had all at different times since this started ~ the heaviness feels really weird, kinda like your ear is full of water.

There is medication to help with the dizziness and a water pill to take to maybe help with the fluid inbalance.  I have both.  There isn't a cure.  Its a learn to live and deal with it type issue.

I've read of things you can do to possibly help ~

No fizzy drinks (goodbye diet coke & diet sprite)
No caffeine (thrilled they make decaf tea, yeah it has a tiny bit but...)
No alcohol or smoking (that was easy, since its a non issue)
Cutting back on salt could help

So, I am praying the worst is what I've experienced so far.  It was getting better and bam, it hit again yesterday.  So its going to be very unpredictable.

I am thankful that I can still cross stitch.  My glasses bother me, so I may need to go back to eye dr. if that continues. 

Its funny to be walking from point A to point B and suddenly swerve.  Kinda like walking on a boat or a bus.  Definite unbalance.

Theres a lot of info people have put on pinterest too ~ I found some funny cartoons ~

This is funny - even though Meniere's Disease isn't funny! Just everyday in the life of someone with Ménière's Disease. Wouldn't you feel bad too, if you were on a merry-go-round, 24/7?  Ménière's  Awareness.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Recap of 2014

We had lots of fun and excitement packed into 2014 ~

Greg, Amy and I journeyed to Honduras for a week long mission trip.  Very hot, lots of fun, friendships forged and strengthened, and sharing Christ and His love with some awesome children & their parents.

Feb. brought us a new grandson ~ Thomas Jonathan Jackson Cutler!  He joined his big brother Robert and doubled our grandsons!  He is a laid back, easy going baby boy with beautiful smiles!  Its fun to watch him and Robert together.  He just started taking some steps this week.

We participated in several fundraisers to help with our church's week long mission trip to Haiti.  Will went this year for the first time and loved it. 

Greg & Amy went to New York for the 2nd year to serve with a mission team.  They had a great time.  I had to miss this trip because of James jaw infection and surgery.  I was the "babysitter".

We started working at a ceramics shop, first as a volunteer position and it turned into a part time job.

Amy went to Memphis for Street Reach again this year ~ 3rd year I believe.  She loves doing the mission projects and vbs for the inner city children in their neighborhood.

In August we spent time in Roanoke at Gregs folks home.  Amy got her boaters license and learned how to drive a jetski.

Just a couple of days after the middle of the month,  grandson #3 made his world debute!  Aiden Scott McDaniel ~ he is such a tiny little guy.  He surprised us all with his tiny size 5 1/2 pounds ~ a big surprise since his daddy weighed 9 pounds at birth.  At 4 months, he is a bundle of energy and has just about tripled in size.  Its a lot of fun to watch my son with his son!

We spent my birthday at Disney World.  Greg, Mom, Amy, Will and I had a blast.  Its as much fun to go with big kids as it is little kids!  But I am looking forward to taking grandchildren in the future!

We had several fun visits with Andy and AmyKate.  They were a great help when James was in the hospital.  AmyKate started doing ceramics projects with us! 

Thanksgiving was at Moms with all 3 grandsons together for the first time!  Oh, what fun.  3 little buddies ages 2 and under! 

December was our Christmas music at our church and the following week at another church.  Lots of laughter and praise in our little group.

All of our children turned a year older ~ James 31, Rob & Andy 27, Allen 25, Katie 21, Will 20 and Amy 18. 

We are looking forward to 2015 ~~~~~

a new grandbaby is coming in August!
Mission trips to Honduras, Haiti, and Memphis!
Our 10th anniversary!  We are planning an RV trip to Florida for our celebration!
Greg is eligible to retire in April ~ we don't know what this will bring yet!

We are so thankful for the blessings and opportunities the Lord has allowed us to enjoy.