Saturday, July 30, 2011

A shout out to our military

Hi all - as I was walking my dog among the "sand dunes" near the golf course maintenance area today - in 96 degrees and steaming humidity and wearing long sleeves and pants (no sun for me!) - I thought of the men and women who have chosen to serve our country in the Middle East.  They spend ALL DAY, EVERY DAY in this kind of heat!!  They wear layers of clothing, heavy boots, helmets and heavy packs, and they're always on alert, usually carrying some kind of heavy weapon for protection.  They are on guard for hours upon hours, protecting our freedom by stalking the terrorists who want to take it from us.  I am overwhelmed at their heart for service and want to say "thank you!!" to them for their incredible job.  No matter how you feel (who LIKES war???) we need to support them and what they do.  Can I get an "AMEN"? 

With much gratitude, VG

Colossians 3:16
Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly...singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Quick post: Our Cosmic Turn

Hello all!  Ahhh - quarterly reporting has wound down and I am once again free to blather on about things...oh goodie!  (insert whatever emoticon comes to mind here...)  :-)

In my last post I had just been on a plane over Florida when the shuttle was launched.  This morning I was awoken at 6 a.m. by the house shaking from a sonic boom - the shuttle was re-entering for its landing, right over Naples!  How cool was that? 

As I walk my dog at night I have a lot of time to think about random things, but one thing that keeps coming back to me is something my friend and I talked about last week:  our cosmic turn.  Whether it ends up being good or not, we each get our "turn" - all the stoplights are green (or red) on a particular day, our physical ailments lay dormant (or flare up) for awhile, our lives are simple and quiet for a time (or crazy with crazy people for way too long) - you get the idea.  Job 1:21 says, "...the Lord giveth, and the Lord taketh away."  We each get our cosmic turn - what has yours been lately?

I will leave you with this thought:  It is not possible to skip without smiling!  (try it sometime)

Have a great weekend!

Skipping and smiling,  VG

Numbers 6:24-26
 “The LORD bless you
   and keep you;
the LORD make his face shine on you
   and be gracious to you;
the LORD turn his face toward you
   and give you peace.”

Friday, July 8, 2011

Shuttle launch and flowers

Hi everyone (all 5 of my friends - wahoo!)  ;-)
I was on a flight today leaving from Florida when the pilot said that the people on the right side of the plane would have "the view of their lifetime".  We didn't realize that meant being able to see the last shuttle launch from Cape Canaveral - wow!  We could see it as it went up and left the trail - 


That was a memorable sight!

We bought some flowers for friends and I had to take pics of them (of course!).  

One of my faves - a Gerbera daisy
A rose for you!
Not sure what this is but I thought it was pretty!
Last week as I talked with my friend Anna about blogging she pointed out that it makes one live with intention.  Smart girl, that Anna!  We talked a little about what we blog about and why we do it, and blogging has definitely brought my interests into focus.  I have actually noticed that I'm not quite as scattered as I thought (though there's still plenty of variety in varietgrrl!).

That's all for now - just wanted to post these things as I thought about them...

Happy weekend!  VG

Ephesians 1:18
"I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people..."

Saturday, July 2, 2011

Art and dogs

Hi!  Well, art and dogs don't really have anything to do with one another - that's just what I'm thinking of today as I decompress from the hectic-ness of work...  

Yesterday I received a catch-up call from Regina, the owner of one of my favorite shops in Fort Myers - The Owl and the Pussycat.  This shop is my "candy store" - everything in it, though not edible, is deliciously beautiful!  Regina hosts demos on Wednesday mornings at 10:30 where we learn the art of fine art (and usually some art history as well!).  She also teaches art classes every Saturday morning and many days during the Florida "season" (Jan.-April).  Classes range from making fine art cards to book-making and everything in between.  If you are looking for a way to boost your creative juices, this is the place to visit (and stay for awhile!).  Regina and the talented ladies who show up each week will inspire you to push yourself out of your comfort zone and go make art!

On the dog front, I have a golden retriever named Sammy who turned 6 yesterday - Happy Birthday, Sammalamma!  (The first time I met her 5 years ago she was Sammalammadingdong - it had a ring to it...).  She makes me smile every day.  If you have a dog you know what I'm talking about - how can you not smile at them at least a dozen times during the day?  They love you when you come home after being gone, be it an hour or three weeks, and all they want is your attention (and ANYTHING EDIBLE (or even NOT edible...see below!!)).  At least, that's Sammy anyway...

My girl who likes to eat rocks!
Look at that smile...

While out for a walk last evening the sprinkler system was on.  Have you ever watched a dog "attack" a sprinkler to get a drink?  It makes me laugh every time!  Sammy attacks that spraying water as if she needs to beat it back with her mouth - and she keeps going after it, as if she can make it stop.  I love to watch her and tonight she was in fine form - her whole head was in that sprinkler and she could have cared less - she just wanted to "get it"! It's the little things...

Other things that make me smile:  Sam loves the spa when it's hot - she has the "belly up to the bar" down pat!  And when my friend gave me the mug with a golden retriever in the bottom, I had to use it for my daily milk chug - I just liked the nose sticking out, that's all!

Where's my umbrella drink?
A little milk with my Golden...

Upon closing, seeing that it's the 4th of July weekend, why not read the Declaration of Independence and find out what our founding fathers were thinking and going through so many years ago.  It will open your eyes and make you think -  I guarantee it!

Stay safe and play nicely with your neighbors!  God Bless America and all of our fine men and women serving around the world so that we may enjoy our freedom!!!

Cheers and smiles, VG

Mark 12:28-31
"...One of the teachers of the law came and heard (them) debating. Noticing that Jesus had given them a good answer, he asked him, “Of all the commandments, which is the most important?”  “The most important one,” answered Jesus, “is this: ‘Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength. The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself. There is no commandment greater than these.”

Friday, July 1, 2011

Ha! I love to laugh at...

...just about everything!  Yes - here is another bunny trail...

We weren't married very long when I completely lost it (aka: laughing uncontrollably - like, I couldn't stop if I tried!) while watching some inane TV show.  My husband looked over at me with a confused (and bemused) look that showed me he was, in effect, thinking, "Who ARE you?  Who did I marry?  WHAT IS SO FUNNY????"  I'll admit it - I really couldn't tell him exactly what set me off, but 23 years later I did it again (that means it was just last week...).  And do you know what it was this time?  A birthday card for my mom.  Yes, you read that right - IT WAS FOR MY MOTHER!!  I'm a horrible daughter - I get my mom the goofiest cards - not a lot of sap in here - sorry!!  :-)  I literally laughed uncontrollably AGAIN not only while I was in the store but as I stood in line to purchase the card and as I got into the car where, yes, my husband was waiting for me...It happens, folks....  :-)

One more bunny trail:  Check out the Daily Puppy (below right) - how CUTE is that??!!  I love getting an RDA of puppies!!

On to ozzer itemz...(a leetle French pops out once in to love Paris!  but that's for another post...)

I have digressed long enough from Jackson, WY that I MUST at least go back and mention the Amangani resort where we got to enjoy a few (very) precious nights.  Warning:  This will not make your budget list.  But we stumbled upon it in Jackson and decided to make the stay a birthday/anniversary gift to each other this year.  Save up and go stay, even for a night!  I promise it's worth it.   Most of the Aman resorts are in Indonesia but we have 2 in the States: Wyoming and Utah.  'Nuf said.

I think I said I'd post more about our trip (yes, a few posts ago...).  So, after mentioning Utah a few times, I must say that Bryce and Zion were amazing!  Two completely different parks but awesome, nonetheless!  Pack the bus, take the kids and watch them wear themselves out running up those (steep) trails!  (Watch the dropoffs...)  Then sleep well at night  :-)

Here are a few more pics of what's in store for you:

Bryce in the morning

On the way to Angels Landing, Zion National Park

On the way down from Angels Landing, Zion

Moon over Sedona, AZ

Sculpture in Sedona

Sunset in New Mexico (from the car!)

Moon over NM, from the car too!

Oops - OK - I put in a few I took from the car - but the moon and sunset were too good to let pass by!

Nighty night for now - have a beautiful 4th and I'll see you on the flip side of mid-July (work calls for a few weeks...)  

Cheers and happy days!  VG

Ephesians 2:4-5
But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved.