HAPPY BIRTHDAY, Samuel !!!
Thursday, July 24, 2014
July, 1954 ~ 6 Years Old. I wonder where I was going all dressed up, hat and all.
This was in the corner of the back yard of the little pink bungalow where I grew up. I loved that house. Still drive by it when I visit Ohio. It isn't pink anymore, but still opens the floodgate of memories every visit.
I must have got my love of flowers from Mom. In every photo taken in our yard or around the house, there are flowers ~ big beautiful flowers. She definitely had a green thumb!
Wednesday, July 23, 2014
Monday, July 21, 2014
Friday, July 18, 2014
Thursday, July 17, 2014
June, 1956 ~ Doesn't every little girl dream of becoming a Ballerina? For a few years, Mom made sure I was able to take ballet lessons. During that time, I was in a production of Swan Lake at the Palace Theater in Canton. For an 8 year old, that was a dream come true. Thank you, Mom. I still have those feathers that I wore in my hair on that stage.
Swan Lake, June, 1956, Palace Theater, Canton, Ohio
I am the last swan on the far right.
Tuesday, July 15, 2014
Monday, July 14, 2014
A cold March wind danced around the dead of night in Dallas as the doctor walked into the small hospital room of Diana Blessing. She was still groggy from surgery. Her husband, David, held her hand as they braced themselves for the latest news.
That afternoon of March 10, 1991, complications had forced Diana, only 24 weeks pregnant, to undergo an emergency Caesarean to deliver the couple's new daughter, Dana Lu Blessing.
At 12 inches long and weighing only one pound nine ounces, they already knew she was perilously premature.
Still, the doctor's soft words dropped like bombs. 'I don't think she's going to make it,' he said, as kindly as he could. 'There's only a 10 percent chance she will live through the night, and even then, if by chance she does make it, her future could be a very cruel one.'
Numb with disbelief, David and Diana listened as the doctor described the devastating problems Dana would likely face if she survived. She would never walk, she would never talk, she would probably be blind, and she would certainly be prone to other catastrophic conditions from cerebral palsy to complete mental retardation, and on and on.
'No! No!' was all Diana coud say. She and David, with their 5-year-old son Dustin, had long dreamed of the day they would have a daughter to become a family of four. Now, within a matter of hours, that dream was slipping away.
But as those first days passed, a new agony set in for David and Diana. Because Dana's underdeveloped nervous system was essentially 'raw', the lightest kiss or caress only intensified her discomfort, so they couldn't even cradle their tiny baby girl against their chests to offer the strength of their love. All they could do, as Dana struggled alone beneath the ultraviolet light in the tangle of tubes and wires, was to pray that God would stay close to their precious little girl.
There was never a moment when Dana suddenly grew stronger. But as the weeks went by, she did slowly gain an ounce of weight here and an ounce of strength there.
At last, when Dana turned two months old, her parents were able to hold her in their arms for the very first time. And two months later, though doctors continued to gently but grimly warn that her chances of surviving, much less living any kind of normal life, were next to zero, Dana went home from the hospital, just as her mother had predicted.
Five years later, when Dana was a petite but feisty young girl with glittering gray eyes and an unquenchable zest for life, she showed no signs whatsoever of any mental or physical impairment. Simply, she was everything a little girl can be and more. But that happy ending is far from the end of her story.
One blistering afternoon in the summer of 1996 near her home in Irving, Texas, Dana was sitting on her mother's lap in the bleachers of a local ball park where her brother Dustin's baseball team was practicing.
As always, Dana was chattering non-stop with her mother and several other adults sitting nearby, when she suddenly fell silent. Hugging her arms across her chest, little Dana asked, 'Do you smell that?' Smelling the air and detecting the approach of a thunderstorm, Diana replied, 'Yes, it smells like rain.'
Dana closed her eyes and again asked, 'Do you smell that?' Once again, her mother replied, 'Yes, I think we're about to get wet. It smells like rain.' Still caught in the moment, Dana shook her head, patted her thin shoulders with her small hands and loudly announced, 'No, it smells like Him.' It smells like God when you lay your head on His chest.'
Tears blurred Diana's eyes as Dana happily hopped down to play with the other children.
Before the rains came, her daughter's words confirmed what Diana and all the members of the extended Blessing family had known, at least in their hearts, all along. During those long days and nights of her first two months of life, when her nerves were too sensitive for them to touch her, God was holding Dana on His chest and it is His loving scent that she remembers so well.
I love this story. Even though I've read it before, when I received it this morning in an email from my friend, Holly, I cried again and decided to share it with you. God is so very good and loving. How exciting to think that one day we will be able to smell His scent.
Friday, July 11, 2014
Thursday, July 10, 2014
June 11, 1951 ~ A typical summer day playing outdoors with cousin Violet. Blessings to Mom, sister Patty, and anyone else who might have put a date on the back of most of these vintage photos. I've noticed that I'm smiling in most of my childhood photos ~ I remember a lot from those days and they were happy happy days in my life. Notice the out of control "fine" hair. Still dealing with that to this day. Aunt Beulah had the right idea ~ Violet's hair is short and adorable.
Tuesday, July 8, 2014
After 3 very normal EKGs yesterday, the doctor signed off for my carpal tunnel surgery. She thinks maybe the EKG they did at pretesting was a fluke because all 3 yesterday were in the perfect range. After my appointment, I went straight to church to thank God because I spent the last week being very concerned. So now I can breath a little easier and wait for the carpal tunnel surgery to be rescheduled. I know that some of you were concerned as well. Thank you for your thoughts and prayers.
Friday, July 4, 2014
Thursday, July 3, 2014
Throwback Thursday ~ It was 1957. I was 9. This was probably a Sunday since we are in dress clothes. How happy I was to have my doll and to be with my wonderful Grandpa. Looking closely at this photo today, I see Mom in Grandpa's face and Patrick in mine.
Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Monday, June 30, 2014
This coreopsis is in Mom's flower garden next to her front door. I was so happy to see it come back this year as it was one of her very favorite flowers. Prized for its dependable nature and colorful, daisylike flowers, coreopsis has a long bloom period and is generally troublefree and easy to grow.
I haven't changed anything in Mom's flower garden ~ not for her sake, but for mine. Every day, when I walk to our backyard and see her garden, it brings a smile to my face remembering how much she loved it. She would sit on her patio chair next to the garden with her cup of tea every morning. I could see her there when I would look out my kitchen window. That picture is burned into my memory. I like to think that Heaven is a flower garden where she sits enveloped in the peace and beauty.