Tuesday, May 21, 2019

First Pickin's



We are starting to see the fruits of our labors.  Our dinner tonight?  Red potatoes, with our onions, green beans, green pepper and a banana pepper, seasoned and baked in the oven.  And it was delicious.  And it's only the beginning.
So Del picked the first of our green beans today.  I LOVE to pick our harvest.  But after Del showed me a picture of what kept him company while picking today, he will be harvesting all by himself.  He was proud to show me the picture he took of about a 15 inch garden snake - and not skinny either.  Did he kill it?  Nope.  In fact, for the longest time, he wouldn't tell me what he did with it.
So that means HE will pickin anything out there from now on.

So Where is He Spending His Days??

The past 1 1/2 years at work have been a little difficult for me.  Last year, I worked harder and longer than any previous years, and had the most successful and record beating year in the books.  I gave my all: even ALL I HAD TO GIVE.  I will make a sincere note of acknowledgement to the Holy Ghost at this time.  He seemed to be ever present in my life, but especially at work, where we had a sense of excitement and success, always grateful for our success.
So, when Dr Henao and her husband set the goals for this 2019,I was discouraged to see them anticipating an even bigger and better year than the one before.  But I knew last year was a fluke - a year that I was very aware I was not going to be able to repeat again this year.  News reports and politics have been sharing how difficult this year will be for the small business owner - especially if what we have to offer, is considered 'an optional' desire.  And That's what orthodontics is - OPTIONAL.
January was great, but still not as big as last year.  February was good, but didn't match last year or even meet our goal.  March and April??  I tanked - terrible months.  Even March being one of the worst months in years.  April was only slightly better than March and by this time, both me AND my doctor are feeling pretty disappointed.  It's now May 22, and it looks like if everything goes as currently scheduled, we might actually hit our goal of 23 starts per month.  But, there has been no presence of the Holy Ghost.  It's like?  He's gone AWOL on me.  There's a different attitude in the office among all the staff.  No-one wants to be there.  No-one is excited.  All talk is of money and why aren't we able to convert our consults into starts!!
I'm discouraged.  Even exhausted. But I'm afraid she's already seen my best efforts last year.  The rubber band has stretched as far as it will go, and in order for us to do better than we did last year, I need help. And with the atmosphere that we currently have in the office, the Holy Ghost not only doesn't feel welcome, but has other places he'd rather be.
So if He's not with me, where has He gone???
How do I create an atmosphere that He wants to be there??  His absence has me angry, negative and wishing I could retire.  I argue and yell at other staff members - even at doctor.  Our focus there is so material and non spiritual, that I have a hard time figuring out how the Holy Ghost would even fit in!!
It's like I wake up with him, go to work, He takes the day off, but I find Him at home when I get there.
Now mind you, my office is not EVIL - but others swear frequently, we have the occasional inappropriate jokes and conversations, and doctor is continually focused on how much money she needs to make to be rich.  And it all turns to me to make that work out.  I HATE having that as my daily focus - hounding people for money - trying to convince people to get something they can't afford and then collect it when they can't pay.  I tell myself I can't do this for much longer and even threaten to quit when I get to my wits end.  Today, I gave doctor my 'one month notice', saying I just can't do this anymore.  Only to take it back at the end of the day, telling her I only want to go home and retire.  But I've committed to Del another 3-4 years of working to help get us out of debt.  I can't quit.
But I've got to figure out a better way to handle this daily grind.  I need to have a calming spirit about me.  Not to help me make more money or help doctor make more money, but to keep me calm and focused when I DON'T reach the goals - and things DO suck at the office. I need the Holy Ghost to comfort me.  I don't like going 9 hours a day without His presence.  Del says I need to choose to be happy.  Have faith enough that the choice to be happy will have me make the decisions and effort to be so. I think a priesthood blessing from him will contribute to those efforts.
Plus, an 'OPEN' sign on my office door, may let HIM know I'm inviting HIM to stay the day.

Sunday, May 5, 2019

Choosing Our Comfort Kingdom

Today, in our scripture study, Del and I were talking about how decisions we make today and in this world, will help to determine where we live in the next life - in that, we will not be blessed with anything in the next life, that made us uncomfortable living in THIS life.
For example - those who choose not to be parents and have children in this life, will certainly not be made to be uncomfortable in the next life by being rewarded with exaltation and the the blessing of children in the eternities.  What we find to be a comfortable choosing of life's experiences will be what the Lord will want us to have in the next life - and we will be happy with it.  But that is also the consequence of our choices.  We will NOT receive exaltation and eternal families with an eternal increase of children, if the choice we make here on earth, is that we do NOT want the challenges of children, and the having and raising of children is this life is our choice.
So basically - we choose the comfort of our eternal kingdom by the choices we make here.  We will desire the same in the next life.  Del is completely willing to sacrifice all that he has and all that he ever will have, to our Heavenly Father and His kingdom, and to the welfare of children.  Because that is what he truly wants as his eternal reward. Those not willing or desiring to make the hard choices here, will certainly not be asked to make the hard choices there.  What we have found to be our 'comfort zone' here, will be exactly what the Lord wants us to have for the eternities.  HE WANTS us to be happy - and if that happiness is found in the Terrestrial Kingdom, or that of the Telestial Kingdom, that is what He will reward us with.  And we will find it more glorious than we could imagine.  But it will not be with an eternal family of spouse, children or eternal increase.
I'm amazed at those in the church who do not understand that concept.  How they think that their feelings about obedience to commandments, or trials and challenges of marriage and having children, will change once they see the 'whole picture', and they will all of a sudden desire to follow all of God's commandments and WANT family etc.  No.  Instead, they will be happy and satisfied with the 'glorious reward' they have received from the level of comfort they lived here on the earth.  No more, and no less.
They will be comfortable.  Just as the Lord has promised.
So, the question I ask myself is...
what are the parameters of my comfort zone?

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Don't Tell Nate He's Autistic!!

Part of my job at Bliss Orthodontics, is I meet and take xrays and pictures of all the new patients who come to our office.  I go over their medical and dental history and get information and facts about the patient before I go into Dr Henao's office and give her a report on all I find out.
Today, my last patient of the day, was Nate, an 8 yr old brother of one of our other patients who is currently in ortho treatment.  I took Nate back and took both xrays and pictures without any difficulty, but with many giggles, jokes and pure joy.  It wasn't until I took him back to his mom in the waiting room, that I understood why mom asked me how things went. I was handed Nate's medical history and could see in bold writing 'Autistic' on the front page. I would have never guessed.
Mom was anxious, yet thrilled to know, that everything had gone beautifully.
I seated both mom and Nate in my office and went over the  paperwork.  When I came to the section of 'patient hobbies and interests', I saw that mom had written - 'loves to play baseball and basketball, loves to dance hip hop and loves to play the piano'.  It was hard for me to hold in the tears welling up in my eyes as I looked at this sweet boy, who although he suffers from some very difficult emotional and physical trials, loves life - and accepts and embraces some challenges that bring him much joy.I especially admired the fact that he had been taking piano lessons for the past few years and finds the playing of the piano 'soothing and theraputic'.  I took piano lessons from age 6 to 16, and I never remember them being either 'soothing' OR 'therapuetic'. 
I was humbled.  Truly humbled to tears to meet this sweet Nate. And meeting him made my day.  I loved how I felt meeting him, talking to him, and understanding who he was.  He made me look at life differently and I liked that he could do that for me.  He was joyful and made me joyful too. I feel blessed to have had the experience.


Friday, March 29, 2019

Evie




She's almost two.
She repeats everything she hears. 
Learning new words every day.
Almost always has a scrape, cut or 'owie' somewhere on her face.
Loves her Papa, but loves her Nana even more.
She loves having Nana in the nursery with her at church.
She loves life - happy almost all the time - and very cute.
I just love being with her -
She's almost two.  Do I think terrible two's will happen??
Why would she pass that stage of her wonderful life???

Sunday, March 24, 2019

Date Nights


They called and asked if they could borrow the backyard for their date night.

The Garden is Planted



Del was gone to Boston all week, so while he was away, I played!!  I put most of the garden in, except for the green beans and the zucchini.  And within 5 minutes of us getting home from the airport when Del got home, we had changed our clothes and finished the planting before the big rain storms came in yesterday and today.  NOW, I'm hoping the water, hail and winds haven't uprooted any of our plants.  Time will tell.  But we are hoping for a beautiful and successful garden this year.