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Now Choose Life

Choose to Live Your Life in Abundance in the after--- after the spouse dies, after the marriage ends, after the kids leave. Join me on my journey of CHOOSING LIFE in my after. This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live- Deut 30:19

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October 29, 2017

What I Read--- and saw the movie!!

As I have said many times before, biography is my favorite genre! There is something about seeing the twists and turns of a person's life that makes me realize all the more that God and His plans for our lives have to play a key role in our journey. I go back and forth with my thoughts on how much of our lives are predestined. I guess I won't really know until I get to heaven. I just want to make sure that I don't miss out on being in tune with my path and make sure that I make decisions that are in line with what I know would be pleasing to God.

That is what I see in the story, Same Kind Of Different As Me. In this memoir, we see a man who has been unfaithful to his wife. In the process of trying to reverse the damage of the affair, Ron Hall begins to follow his wife's lead in helping others at a homeless shelter in Ft. Worth, Texas. The deeper this couple plunges into the call to help the homeless, the more their marriage is restored.

 After Debbie dreams of a black man who will save the city, she asks Ron to befriend one of the scariest men who enters the shelter. Although Ron thinks she is crazy, events lead him to befriend Denver. This begins the friendship that will see Ron through some of the darkest days.


SKODAM  really is one of my favorite books. I first read it in 2010 after a friend recommended it on Facebook. There have been very few books in my lifetime where I laughed as hard as I cried in the same book, but this book did that to me. If this story were fiction, I would hate it because it is so implausible-- and I think its implausibility is why I love it so much. Only through obedience to that still, small voice of God can something like this happen. Obedience for Ron as well as Denver to trust each other enough to start a friendship. We witness certain obedience on Debbie's part as she continues to work towards her vision of making the shelter a place that is worthy of the children of God who need it so desperately. In this story, we see Debbie choose to see all of these people as God sees us-- we are all the same in His eyes. 

Although the general storyline is the same, the book and movie are very different. I truly believe that reading the book and seeing the movie should go hand in hand to get the full effect of the story. I reread the novel before going to see the movie which helped fill in some of the parts the movie doesn't have time to cover.

The movie skips Ron's upbringing and his early days going to TCU trying to find a date-- those are the laugh out loud moments! This film stars Greg Kinnear, Renee Zelwegger, Jon Voight, and Djimon Hounsou who does a remarkable job portraying Denver. 

I highly recommend the book and the movie!! I hope the movie does well so that Hollywood will be willing to share more stories like this one!

October 19, 2017

Only The Brave- my experience being part of the making of a movie

Only The Brave

The summer of 2013, I had been a widow for a little over a year. I had made it through the first terrible year, but when I heard of the Granite Mountain hotshots perishing in a wildfire leaving behind many widows and small children, it brought back some emotions that I thought had been put behind me.

If you are not familiar with the story of the Yarnell Hill fire, here are a few links:

Sept 2013- The True Story of the Yarnell Hill Fire

Dec 2013- Last videos and radio contact.

Of course, I relate closely to the families left behind. Here is an interview with the widows. It is still difficult for them. Hearing them even four years later is heartbreaking.

During the summer of 2016 several movies were being made in my area. When I found out one was the story of those hotshots, I was very intrigued.  I was so glad the story was going to be told. After having the privilege of being a very small part of the project, I have a lot of respect for the director and actors who seem to have felt a big responsibility to get this story told correctly!!

I started seeing the call for extras on our local Facebook group and decided to check it out. It so happened that my friend Alison and her son were going to also be extras. My car is a 2013 model so it just made the cut to be able to be used in the film. Before I knew it, we were headed up to the local ski hill to be in an evacuation scene. There was a lot of sitting around waiting after we were checked in. While I was waiting, one of the women working with extras came up and asked if I would be willing to go back that Friday to be a court stenographer. I immediately agreed.

We worked all day on that one evacuation scene and had a lot of fun being part of it all. The following pictures show how we spent the entire day. If this scene makes it in, we are all parked going down the mountain. We are upset and looking back at our burning homes. The Hotshots come walking through the middle of our cars.

That Friday, I went back to film the court scene. They had me take several outfits that looked like a court stenographer. Alison previously worked in the probation aspect of criminal justice and helped me pick out the perfect outfit. When I got to wardrobe and showed them what I had, the women in charge said she had been watching old episodes of Murder She Wrote and had the perfect outfit for me. She had a completely different idea of what a court stenographer looks like than I did, but I certainly wasn't going to complain!! I ended up wearing a lavender colored double knit pantsuit!! Being used to the librarian stereotype, I realized that I just needed to go with the flow!!

I sent this picture to my family and Alison. You can tell by the look on my face that I'm not happy about my wardrobe selection. 

We used a local courtroom for the scene. Not many people were involved so I was able to be up close to all that went on. The director,  Joseph Kosinski, was very nice. This court scene involved Miles Teller. When they brought him in the first time, he glared at me. We were always warned not to talk to the stars so I tried not to go "I Love Lucy" on him, but he was glaring at me so terribly, I had to look at him. Then it hit me--- he was in character. He was playing the part of a teen who had gotten into trouble. I had been stared at like that numerous times by teenage boys at school. I was certainly used to that look by young men. He proved what a great actor he is to me just by that moment!! It seemed very real!

I went back a few weeks later for the third scene. It was another evacuation scene. This time we were evacuating a neighborhood. Again, it was all day, but such a great experience. I randomly got put with a woman who I found out during the course of the day was good friends with my daughter's 3rd-grade teacher--- it is such a small world!! This particular scene has made the movie trailer. It is the scene with cars driving crazy and people running down a street. I was so close to the director and camera that I don't even know if I will make it into that scene.

I had a great day with Annie! I was so shocked to find out she knew M's teacher!!

This is how close I was to the director and the camera so I really don't think I'll make it into this scene.

Alison and me after a long day of acting!! The guy in the background is a real actor from Los Angeles. He was filming another movie nearby and worked as an extra on Only The Brave on his days off.

One very special aspect of being in this movie was what my daughter, M, got me for Christmas last year. We all exchanged gifts, and before I knew it, M was standing in front of me with a laptop showing me my page on the IMDb website. She created it for me and got it approved with the website. I will more than likely never have anything to add to my IMDb page, and they may take it down if I don't make it in the movie, but my 30 seconds of fame has sure been fun!!

Being part of this movie was a great experience, but I know for so many it is so much more than a movie. It is a glimpse at a terrible time in their lives. It is the story of 19 young men losing their lives way too soon!! And since I now live in an area that has been ravaged by wildfires in the past, it is a story that will bring back horrific memories for many that live in New Mexico and other parts of the country.

Only The Brave is extremely timely now with all the wildfires that have been burning over the past few months as well as the ones still burning. I'm so proud to have been a very small part of telling the story of true American heroes. I hope many people go see this movie, and that it is a great success!!

October 18, 2017

Peak of The Week Wednesday, October 18, 2017

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Where will today take you?

It's the PEAK of the week. It's all downhill to the weekend after today. I'm spending the day shopping with a friend after a checkup with my ENT. I plan on having a great day-- I hope yours is as well!!

On this Peak of the week, here is a peek at some things that piqued my interest this week!!
(Dr. T told me I should say that!)

College Fair App
Luckily I'm done with the college years. I remember those senior year struggles of filling out college applications and waiting to hear. This blog post tells about a new app to help students decide on which college is best for them based on their personal information-- Yes, there is an app for that!!

Most Popular Book Club Books of the past decade
I love to read book reviews. I guess it is the years of reading them as a school librarian that makes me still want to find those great books. I have read many of the books on this list. Since the ones I've read have all been wonderful, I know that ALL the books on this list are worth a read!!

My daughter told me about ebates because she knows that I do a lot of online shopping. It is free money!! So far, I have nothing bad to say about it. I have already gotten a check for about $50.00. My next check will be over $100.00. I have researched it and can't find a bad review online that warns about using it. All I do is activate it when I'm going to shop and ebates does the rest. If you sign up and use my code, I get $25.00 and you get $10.00 to start you out on your account.

Here is my code:

I hope today is a great day for everyone!! I hope to make it a great day for myself-- the choice is mine!!

October 16, 2017

What I Wore- Church 10-15-17 AND Showing Off My Hometown's Fall Leaves

It is the height of fall in my New Mexico mountains, and I'm loving it!! I know that in a few weeks, it will get really cold and SNOW will come. I've had such a crazy summer that I feel like I haven't had a summer at all so I'm really not ready for winter yet, but I am looking forward to a few cold, snuggly days!!

Here is what I wore to church this Sunday--

It is sometimes hard to know what to wear on these beautiful fall days. I want to embrace the cooler weather, but I'm not ready to pull out the heavy sweaters. One thing that can easily be done is to add a pair of riding boots to your outfit. I did this a lot when I lived in South Texas-- it was the only way to feel like it was fall!!

I bought this dress in College Station, Texas when M was in college there. I stayed with her for her sororities'  (Chi Omega of course!!) Mother\ Daughter weekend. This dress reminds me of that time- plus it is very easy to wear. I love these boots because they are so plain. (similar boots). I just don't think I'll be able to bring myself to wear the over the knee boots that are so popular!!

I had the funniest thing happen in church. I thought this necklace had crept up because I could feel something on my neck towards the end of the church service. When I reached up to move it, I realized it was a bug!!!! Not a little bug either- a medium size bug!! I told Dr. T that he is very lucky that I didn't scream! Wouldn't that have added some excitement to the service? I love this necklace because it is the diamond out of my wedding ring from R. I wear it a lot!! 

Dr. T gave me these earrings for my birthday. I know many people love to go to Taos, NM. These earrings are from Emily Ruffin Goldsmiths in Taos. The shop is close to the John Dunn Shops and prices are really reasonable!! Be sure to stop by there when you are in Taos! 

Dr. T normally plays golf on Sunday afternoons, but his golfing buddy had surgery so he has been home with me. He loves to watch football on these afternoons. I try to keep Sundays holy (set apart). My days are all so much alike since I don't work. I never do cleaning or regular chores on Sunday because I want to keep it a special day. I try to use Sunday afternoons as a time for relaxing and reflecting while reading or watching specific TV shows. A good friend of mine tells of "shoulder to shoulder." She heard about it at a couple's bible study. It is just spending time with your husband without talking. Most men are not big talkers. Being there while he does something he enjoys without me yapping in his ear is important. I've made a point to sit with Dr. T while he's watching the game. I read blogs, magazines, and books because I don't care that much about football. Every so often he will rewind a play so I can see it and we talk about it, but other that, not much is said to each other. 

I read several widowed women's blogs who talk about football season without their husbands. There is such a distinct sound of a football game. Many of these women didn't necessarily watch the game with their husband, but miss the sound terribly now that their husbands are gone. Several have written that they turn a game on just to feel that feeling of having him there watching the game again. 

It really is the little things that make a marriage, a home,... a life!!

How about you? I'd love to hear other "shoulder to shoulder" examples. I'd love to hear how you spend your Sunday afternoons!!

If you like what you see, please be sure to pin this on Pinterest. It will really help me reach some blog goals. My pin button is at the bottom of the post. Or you should be able to click on a picture to pin this post. 
October 15, 2017

Test Post

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I'm doing some additions and work on my blog. Sorry for this test post.

October 08, 2017

What I Wore- Church 10-8-17

Church services around the country have become very casual. I still think it shows respect to wear something a bit more "dressed up" than what I wear every day. I recently went looking for new riding boots, and while I was shopping, I found a couple of other items that I really wanted. One thing that I couldn't say no to was this new pair of shoes! It didn't matter what I was wearing to church today-- I was wearing these shoes!!

These are Karl Lagerfeld from Dillards
So many colors for this shoe! I had a hard time deciding what I wanted. I wear black so much I decided to go with the solid black, but this was a close second! It can be found here.

These styles can be found here.

I chose this two for one, tie cuff top from The Loft. The color of the top in these pictures is not true to how the top looks in person. Everything is shades of grey, not the blue hue that is shown in the pictures.
 Similar tops here.

This picture shows the true color of the cuff and "under" shirt.

Happy Fall Y'all. What are you wearing to take you into fall?

If you like what you read/see on the blog, please share with friends. It has become my goal to up my readership. I'm learning so much about social media. I'm learning about the importance of search terms, social media sharing, and many other things. It is fun and keeps me feeling creative and fulfilled! I still don't feel confident with these fashion posts, but they seem to get so many views from all over the world that I keep doing them!! Thanks to YOU for stopping by!!