Amazing Things Are No Coincidence

The definition of happiness. Thank you to my sisters and everyone who gave us photos.

If you’ve been following my blog for a while you know that I don’t believe in coincidences. I believe that God is at work, making things real, bringing people together and spinning His magnificent magic.

There have been a couple of things that happened recently that drove this home even further for me. My son was married on Labor Day weekend and so many wonderful and amazing things happened. I want to share some details that I’m still in awe about.

Amazing thing #1-

About an hour before the church ceremony we realized that Penny’s dress was at home. This was fine except we were half an hour away at the church when we realized this. I frantically called my sister in laws, managed to reach one of them, and fifteen minutes before the ceremony, they arrived with dress in hand. Penny walked down the aisle like nothing ever happened.

If my future daughter in law would not have said to me, “So where is Penny’s dress?” when she did, Penny might have walked down the aisle in her old pink onesie. Ha! Thankfully, that didn’t happen.

Both Beautiful- Penny with her cousin Deanna

Amazing Thing  #2-

A blogger friend of mine, Daleen of Sunday’s Child, happened to be on the east coast from the west coast just days before the wedding. We have been phone friends for five years, sharing stories and encouragement in all walks of life, and here she was (and her lovely husband to boot), coming near me for the first time ever.

Almost a year ago Daleen and I realized this could happen. I kept hoping (and praying) the timing would work out and yes folks, it did. The night before the wedding Jim and I met Daleen and Bruce in the lobby of the Pittsburgh Hyatt (surreal!!) and whisked them to the rehearsal dinner. Wedding day dawned and we met for an early breakfast in the hotel. It was then that Daleen did the unimaginable. She offered to come over my house and gather the sunflowers into bouquets for Jess, Michelene, and Jana (and others!).

When we arrived at my house I ran around getting things together while Daleen made bouquets. The mason jars of fresh sunflowers from McConnells’ Farm were already together and I made yellow rose boutonnieres the day before. I decided to use soda pop plastic holders to contain the mason jars (genius!) and Bruce and Jim loaded everything into the car for the trip to the church.

When I nearly had a meltdown over Penny’s dress, Daleen and Bruce calmly offered to go and get it. Thankfully that wasn’t necessary but still, wow, what an offer.

Top row, L to R, Presbytera Anna and Me. Bottom, L to R, Daleen and Bruce, friend Lillian

Amazing Thing #3-

My sister Mary and I made a rogue Greek CD of music to play at the wedding. I wanted to do the official bridal dance while Jim splashed money over John and Jess. We had a blues band at the wedding- Eugene and the Night Crawlers (yes, that is really their name)- and I called Eugene a couple weeks before the wedding to see if he had a CD player attached to his speakers.

“Yes M’am”, he said. Ok, I figured we were all set except when it came time to play the song, Eugene’s CD player was one of those compact Walkmans from probably ten years ago. The disc was spinning but nothing was coming out of the speakers.

After a few tense minutes, my son wandered over and used his IT skills to diagnose the problem. I said a silent prayer something like, “God, help me. Can you please make this happen?”

Within two minutes, my sister had downloaded the song on her iphone and we plugged it into the speakers. Out came the official bridal dance song, played at just about every Greek wedding I’ve ever been to. We danced our hearts out to that one song.

Where was God? Everywhere. He was just ……everywhere. The icing on the cake was the comment Daleen made to me after the wedding. She said that Bruce’s definition of happiness from now on was going to be my face as I walked down the aisle. His definition of radiant? Jessica, as she walked down the aisle.

Radiant Bride and Handsome Groom

There are amazing things going on in our life every day. Instead of taking those wonderful moments for granted, or chalking them up to luck, think again. It’s the spiritual that really makes those things happen. I’m still in awe over my son’s wedding and thankful for the many blessings then and now.

My Family! From L to R, Cally, Me, Mom, Mary

A load of gratitude to my sisters who took great care of my mother the week before and week after the wedding. Thank you so much!!

Blessings to Ann, Jess’ mom, who is recovering from health issues. Please say a prayer for her.

There are more pictures on my Katherine’s Daughter Event’s blog. Click HERE for the link.

 

Join me on my graceful journey.
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Kindness Rocks

The Kindness Rocks Project

I was on a girl’s weekend with a few of my friends. We happened to be at Susquehanna University, a beautiful campus with lots of quiet and flowers. I wanted to stay in the shade and decided to walk under a line of trees to keep cool.

Turning a corner, I saw the large flat stones. It stopped me right in my tracks. Here’s what it said.

How fitting that this should be on a college campus. So many people of all ages probably go to this school, work and study hard, and sit among the trees on a gorgeous day. Maybe on a tough day they need to see this. Perhaps they pick up a rock and take it back to their room. It’s possible it will make their day a little brighter.

I decided to be needy and so I took a rock. It said, “You are Worth It.” I love it. I brought it home and placed it in the soil of my growing fig tree. I hope the tree will note this message and feel free to grow tall and strong. I did briefly wonder if I should not take a rock since I didn’t have one to leave. I don’t think this is the main purpose. I think the rocks are there for the taking.

I would have loved to be in the room when these were being painted. How did the painters decide what quotes to choose? There were some rocks with only one word on them. Others had more sayings. Since then, I’ve looked up the Kindness Rocks website and wow, there are so many more wonderful rocks!

I told my friend Ms. Child about the Kindness Rocks. She thought maybe she’d start one in her area. Lo and behold she went on the website and it turns out there is one near her! She’s excited about creating some rocks of her own and visiting the project. How cool is that? To find out if there is a Kindness Rocks project in your area, click HERE.

This is bigger than you think. Check out the video.

I love this wonderful idea. A landmark birthday is looming this year and I’ve already reached out to my township to ask them for an opportunity to start a Kindness Rocks project in my local park. If you live near me, let me know if you’ll come and paint with me.

PS. The Kindness Rocks website is full of information! Many gorgeous rocks and a downloadable “how to” on the best materials to use.

Join me on my graceful journey.
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Me and My Bicycle

Look for the biggest bike tire and you'll find me!
The Neighborhood Kids and their Bikes

I grew up in a big safe neighborhood with lots of kids. We could ride our bicycles around and around the block. When I think back on this time of my life, there’s one thing that was always with me- my Schwinn bike.

I can remember having at least two Schwinns in my childhood. The picture above is from a birthday (I think) when I received a new one and my friends were as excited as I was. I remember nearly everyone having a bike at this time and all of us spending endless hours in the pleasure of riding.

We would pedal up to each other’s houses to play, sometimes throwing our bikes down in the yard. Or maybe we’d be more careful and put the kickstand up. However we did it our bikes were our transportation and our wheels to adventure.

I was trying to identify the kids in the picture and here’s who I think is there. Laurie, is that you on the far left? I think so! And I’ll bet that’s Debbie E. next to Laurie with the short black hair. My youngest sister Cally is in front on the tricycle. The tall girl in the back, I am drawing a blank (my old friends, help me out here). I am next, then I believe that could be Chuck W. to my right. And on the far right is my sister Mary.

There’s some other things I remember about riding my bicycle that apply to this day. It’s good to exercise. It’s good to feel the wind through your hair. Remember that you are alive this very minute and enjoy that moment fully. Revel in your freedom because we live in a great country.

One more thing- Get a good speed going and then lift your hands up in the air!

I looked up Schwinn’s website to see what they were all about these days. I found this on their “Our Company” page:

From your first ride without training wheels to a summer cruise at the beach with your friends, the thrill of riding a bike never gets old. Many of our fondest memories are tied to experiences we’ve had on bikes, rooted in unbridled joy and carefree fun. Even if you haven’t hopped on a bike in a while, it won’t take long for the smiles and laughs to come back.

At Schwinn, we make bikes that allow riders of all ages and abilities to experience the joy of riding. From “walk ‘n’ roll” kids bikes to the Le Tour Legacy, we offer a comprehensive line of bikes that suit the needs of riders across the United States and around the world. Our bikes are built to the Schwinn Quality standard, with over 100 years of cycling heritage, passion and expertise. This standard is the foundation of our commitment to creating the best bikes available today, and we are confident that you will experience our devotion to cycling every time you ride a Schwinn.

Enjoy The Ride!

I’d say they got it right. I love the part about fondest memories, unbridled joy and carefree fun. If I inspire you today to take a walk or ride a bike, that would be great.

Have a joyous day!

 

 

Join me on my graceful journey.
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