No Limits 5K Birthday Run

NoLimitsI am announcing that I am getting in shape to do something out of my comfort zone…

5K Run~NO LIMITS~5K Run, Walk, Give, Transform.  

Actually, it will be a walk for me, my knees no longer want to run anywhere, they just walk.

This isn’t any 5K Run, it has an intentional purpose for this season of my life. I want to mark turning 55 this year. YIKES! Did I just say that out loud? Yes, it’s true and I am embracing it as a gift to have lived over half a century.

I want to mark it differently this year. I invite you to read the whole story at SheLoves Magazine a global community of women who are partnering with me to make this 5K dream come true! My goal is to raise $5500, $100 for each year I’ve been blessed. Whether you join us for the race, or if you can’t make it because of your schedule or live too far away, you can still join in. Register and details click here

I would love for you to celebrate my “BIG” birthday,  June 7th at 10:00 am, starting the race at the Birch Bay Water Slides and when we are done we will have a yummy lunch and learn more about the two initiatives~women who desperately need our love and support in Rwanda and Moldova.  I want to take as many friends with me to mark this day and walk for justice. Here’s to putting on running shoes…I mean my walking shoes and heading out to the sunshine today to start training. 

P.S. I will have some training tips coming this week from two of my friends who are the REAL runners.

What do Buttons, a Teapot, Socks and a Bible have in Common?

photoI was cleaning out my dresser drawer and at the bottom of my sock drawer, I found the white socks I often used to wear that belonged to my grandmother. I was about to toss them but when I turned them over I remembered, they had my grandmother’s name labeled on the cuff. I couldn’t part with them. They were one of her last possessions she owned from her stay in the Alzhiemers unit in the nursing home before she graduated to heaven.

These are the tangible memories I have left of my grandmother. Her teapot, her sewing buttons, her socks and of course her most prized possession, her Bible. Today, fourteen years ago on Mother’s Day, her soul left her frail and aging body. These are some of my most cherished belongings I have of hers. The teapot is cracked and chipped, the buttons mismatched, the socks worn and her bible underlined from days and nights of reading, but each has a story that intersect with my own life.

They are a part of her legacy to me as her granddaughter that I can’t forget.

Her teapot represents the love of family and hospitality that she practiced selflessly. I learned from watching her cook magnificent creations in the kitchen. Some simple, some elaborate, but all with great love. Her teapot is old and worn from gallons of hot tea made and shared with family and friends.

Always listening,

Always loving and offering encouragement and prayer.

I felt safe in her kitchen and I could tell her anything and she would listen.

Her teapot is a reminder of unconditional love and time for family and friends.

The buttons, all those many buttons she saved for projects and labors of love that emerged from her sewing room. Each piece was a work of art. She was incredibly skilled with a needle and thread. Patient, and precise with each stitch that was sewed.

She taught me to sew when I was eight years old. I learned from the best. And to this day, when I am sewing, I can still hear her voice in my head, “Clip the threads after each seam, press them open, don’t take shortcuts you will be sorry later.” The memory of her words, mentors me even now as I learned from her then.

As I sewed my nieces wedding gown this past year, I panicked a few times and then I remembered her steady and patient hands she modeled for me.  I knew I could finish the project because she taught me everything I needed to know to construct a beautiful garment with skill. Patience and precision was the key she taught to unlocking the creativity she knew I had inside.

Her Bible, underlined and marked. Notes in the margin, clippings of favorite songs and poem tucked in the pages.  The Psalms were her favorite and as I read the parts she marked I wonder what she was facing on those days. Was she feeling discouraged, sad, depressed, happy, joyful or content? I never really knew, because my Grandmother listened more than she shared. She was a quiet introvert but knew how to lovingly point me to Jesus and the truth I needed for each day.

Never a lecture when I was older,

But more a few words threaded with wisdom from the book she loved the most, her Bible.

It was placed on the corner of the formica table with pen and paper in case she had something to write down. This is what greeted me when I sat down to have a cup of tea as a young married mom and mother, a permanent fixture of faith sitting on the corner of her table.

Her words were few, but her life was lived out of those pages of comfort and truth.

This was her legacy.

And yes, those silly white socks. They are old cotton socks and I thought it was time to toss them. But then I remembered that it wasn’t too long ago that when my feet were cold and I missed my grandma, I wore those socks and they brought me comfort. Somehow they got lost in the bottom of the drawer and today I miss my grandma, so I am wearing the socks.

I hated that my grandmother lived out her last years unaware and without recognition of the most important people in her life, but she was a jewel in the midst of her illness. She exuded patience, gentleness and kindness even in her worst moments. But it was hard to watch her once quick sharp mind and body deteriorate.

I wear the socks and remember unconditional love, hospitality, patience, wisdom, poems, music she hummed as she worked, the safety and warmth of her kitchen and buttons, loads of them!  I’ll wear the socks, have a cup of tea and open her Bible perusing her underlined passages and drink in the legacy she left behind and the one I hope to leave to my grandchildren.

So what do buttons, a teapot, a pair of socks and a Bible all have in common? The faithfulness of a life well lived. A woman of influence, my grandmother, “Mutti” as we affectionately called her. A woman of quiet godly strength and dignity who helped to shape the woman I am today. I am forever grateful.