Sunday, February 28, 2010

Monday 3/1/10 - "HULA HOOPS"


The alternate title for this blog is "Two Kinds of Business".

Writing a blog is a wonderful way to reinforce the truths I am learning in Al-Anon. My brain is like a sieve, it leaks. I need repetition to keep the good stuff in my mind.

One of my favorites is, "There are two types of business: my business and none of my business." Another way of visualizing this is to imagine I am dropping a hula hoop down over my head and everything inside the hoop is my business and everything outside of it is not.

This also reminds me that I can live only my own life's journey. I cannot live another person's journey for them. It is important that I honor the journey that others are taking. I have learned to honor mine. I am also reminded to keep the focus off of the other person - what you're doing, thinking or feeling and to keep my focus on me and my own recovery.

What is the payoff when I put all these things into practice? I find serenity, peace of mind and a nearness to God.

We all live with others whether at home, work or other places. Conflicts happen. We're all human. It is far too easy for me to take the inventory of the other person when there is conflict. I need to stick to taking my own inventory. What I find lacking in myself I can improve with the steps and tools of Al-Anon.

Discovering the character flaws in others is pointless since I am powerless over other people, places, and things. Discovering my own flaws is productive. I can work on changing myself with the help of God.

I heard a really good idea in my home group Al-Anon meeting this morning. A woman shared that anytime she realizes she is drifting into some other person's business she can get her own attention focused back to her own business by touching her nose. It brings her back to inside her own hula hoop. This can be done without attracting any attention by just scratching or casually touching the side of the nose. She said it works. I'm going to try it.

I am praying I stay in my own hula hoop today. :)

Prayer Girl

(Photo credit: hula hoop by Betty

Sunday 2/28/10 - "HURRAY, HALLELUJAH!"


"Hurray and Hallelujah", I'm yelling out in my heart and mind.


Daughter had an interview early last week with the owner of an insurance agency who is a friend of a girl she met in Alcoholics Anonymous and who does her hair (which, BTW, is gorgeous). She then had an interview on Thursday with the manager who would be her boss. It went well and she met with the co-owner after that meeting. When she came home she felt somewhat sure she had the job, but it didn't seem completely official. She was to call Monday. Then Friday, they called and she found out the job was her's.

Daughter knows nothing about insurance and they know it, but she had that winning personality and a God of her understanding guiding things. (This is reminiscent of my first job when I first got sober. I happened upon it through a member of AA.)

The first three months will be a time to see how she adjusts to the insurance business. They will pay for her training. Needless to say, she is ecstatic. She has been unemployed for a year and a half. God is good. She is happy, I am happy. She is grateful, I am grateful.

So.....Friday night we went to Red Lobster to celebrate. Lobsterfest is going on and we both ordered lobster and we both loved it.

I thank you for your prayers.
I'm saying good-bye for now with happiness in my heart and a smile on my face.

Prayer Girl

(Photo credit: Excitement-Desert Safari Team Pinoy by Mann Baribar)

Friday, February 26, 2010

Saturday 2/27/10 - "HAPPY HOME"



(Mama duck this afternoon)

(The duck with the stolen egg)

(Mr. Bert lounging around the fruit)

(Sleeping around the fruit)

(Our "Lucky" dog)

(Please, mommy?)



Prayer Girl

Thursday, February 25, 2010

Friday 2/26/10 - "DISCOVERY"



What planet was she from?

She thought, "Where are we?" and her companion then asked, "Where are we?"

An irresistible urge to place her hands on her friend's back compelled her to do so and the labored breathing became normal.

These things frightened her and she hid them.

Then she discovered she came from God.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: I can still see with my left by

Flash Fiction Friday 55
is a story written in exactly 55 words.
Let the G-Man know if you write one
and read the ones of your fellow readers.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Thursday 2/25/10 - "PRAY CANDLES WITH ME"


"When we became alcoholics, crushed by a self-imposed crisis we could not postpone or evade, we had to fearlessly face the proposition that either God is everything or else He is nothing. God either is, or He isn't. What was our choice to be?"
(From "Alcoholics Anonymous", Chapter 4, We Agnostics, p. 53)

My choice? I chose to believe that God is everything, that God "is". I have never altered that choice. The longer I believe God is everything, the more that belief is proven in my personal experiences and the greater my faith and trust grows.

I have developed a corollary belief. It is:

Either prayer works or it doesn't.

AND - I believe prayer works. The more I pray, the more I see God working situations out in my life that seem impossible and more than I can handle.

God brought me to Alcoholics Anonymous where I found sobriety. God supported and led me through a divorce that was very difficult for me and our children. God led me into a job that became a career and allowed me to grow within myself and provided for our material needs. God opened the doors to a new marriage. I watch my children grow in the love of God and firmly believe He watches over them. The constant in all these events has been the practice of prayer.

Today I continue to pray. Prayer in my life takes many forms. At church I enter the names of people I am praying for in a book that is taken up to the altar during the mass. I pray silently. I allow meditation to merge into prayer. I pray using candles.

When I pray with candles, each candle I light represents a prayer for a particular person, a group of people or specific situations. I pray as I light them. I reflect on the prayer in the flickering lights and I send the prayers to God in the smoke as I snuff each one out. I have described this before, but my revelation today was that I can also light these candles, pray, and send the prayers to God in my mind.

Just a thought - why not pray candles with me? We can do it anywhere and anytime. I have 11 candles (I have just added a 12th candle for Lou's Andrew) and I have lit them so often I remember what each one represents. What are your prayer concerns or requests? How many candles will you light? See them in your mind's eye. Light them. Pray. Blow them out and watch them float to God. I pray your efforts will be blessed.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: candles by simply

Wednesday 2/24/10 - "PRECIOUS, PRICELESS GIFTS"



Prayer Girl
(Photo credit:

Priceless Gift by
lhasaapso by pearl
portrait of a rose by

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Tuesday 2/23/10 - "STANDING GUARD"


Sunday morning I went out to get the paper and saw a cracked duck egg at the end of the walkway that leads up to our front door and where the duck nursery is located. Something had stolen an egg out of the nest. I went to get my camera, but when I returned one of the male ducks that keeps watch over mama had picked up the egg, was carrying it out into the grass and was eating its contents. The majority of the inside of the egg was left on the walk. I don't mean to gross anyone out, but I saw an eyeball and other parts of the embryo. It made me feel sad.

Fast forward to this morning and I noticed many male ducks on the front roof of our house and the house next door keeping watch below them. I feel sure they were
standing guard that no animal try to steal another egg from the nest.

Mama duck leaves the nest several times a day to eat and drink. I have observed some other things I never saw happening the last time. Not being a duck I can only guess at what is going on and it may be completely incorrect. Mama will be setting and one of the male ducks comes up, sits on top of her, bites at her neck, and then starts flapping his wings. Mama starts squawking and finally gets up off the nest and she and the male duck walk out into the yard. My interpretation? That this is a first time mother being guided by an old timer male duck. ???

On to other topics. Daughter got a lead on a job from someone in Alcoholics Anonymous. She had an interview yesterday that went really well. Turns out this was a job with an insurance company too. A few weeks ago she interviewed with a different insurance company in Ft. Myers. That interview went well also, but she didn't get the job. This time she will have a second interview on Thursday with the manager of the office she would be working in and they will make a decision Friday. PRAY GOD'S WILL BE DONE - AGAIN - AND THANK YOU FOR PRAYING FOR HER.

I'm leaving in a few minutes for an Al-Anon meeting and will meet daughter after that for an AA meeting. I am so grateful that these programs exist, that I found them, and that working them has provided the opportunity for peace and serenity one-day-at-a-time as I live life in this crazy world.

Love to all you bloggers.

Prayer Girl

(Photo credit: Husband, Steve, shot this picture at my request. Thank you hubby!)

Monday, February 22, 2010

Monday 2/22/10 - "DUCKLING 160"


Last May our front door alcove space
became a duckling hatching place
Mama laid an egg a day till done
Set for weeks atop each one
Now one returns
Takes her own turn

Sorry for not posting this on Sunday. I'm already breaking the rules, but circumstances beyond my control prevented me from posting this till right now. So sad - so bad. :(

Prayer Girl
(Delicate pieces of Life by

What can you say in 160 characters? Go see Monkey Man.

Saturday, February 20, 2010

Sunday 2/21/10 - "JOYFUL HEART"


It is Saturday night and my heart is full of joy. The weather here in Southwest Florida has been very cold for this part of the country for weeks. It was my daughter's sponsor and my friend's wedding day with a scheduled 10 am ceremony on the beach. Every morning for the past week it has been bitter cold all day including at 10 am. Daughter and I had warm outfits picked out for the ceremony. We ended up changing those outfits in the morning.

This morning I stepped outside and the chill was gone from the air - just vanished over night. The sun and warmth had returned to the area for the wedding. Later the bride told me she had no "Plan B" for it being too cold. It was a delightful morning and an even lovelier afternoon. Both the bride and groom were Alcoholics Anonymous friends with a special bond to the recovery community. I knew many of the guests from AA.

Daughter, husband and I all attended the wedding. Hubby played the violin and it was beautiful as always. He had a job later today so he wasn't able to attend the reception. It was held outdoors at the 'country' home of an AA friend of the bride and groom. There was a very large tent so we were able to be out of the direct sun and enjoy the glorious breezes. There was a catered barbecue meal, music, dancing, lots of wonderful conversation. I sat with my daughter and a mutual friend. It was a wedding I will remember for a long time.

My heart is also joyful because I feel a lot of hope for my daughter. In my heart I feel things are about to change in a very positive way for her. She is still without a job, has been frustrated and discouraged, has had nearly no responses to all her resumes sent out, but I still believe something will come her way and soon. Her four month sobriety date will be in a few days. She is lonely. Her friends are in Tampa. Last week she made a new AA friend by giving a girl a ride home after a meeting. Today she made another friend who is also sponsored by her sponsor. It warmed a mother's heart to see her daughter happy and having fun with a new friend. They went out together tonight. :)

Daughter wrote a poem the other day. She has wanted to write poems for a long time, but has never been able to. When I came home from volunteering at the hospital on Monday she had written one. I loved it. It brought tears to my eyes. I am happy.

Today has been a lovely day. I'm staying in today. Amen.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: Joyful Heart by

During Lent please continue to pray for Karen's daughter. Here is the link to her prayer blog. Thank you. PG

Saturday 2/20/10 - "MORE DUCKLINGS COMING"



(Mama is off the nest long enough to eat and drink)

(Mama and papa)

(Mama setting)




Prayer Girl

During Lent, please continue to pray for Karen's daughter. Here is the link to her prayer blog. Thank you. PG

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Friday 2/19/10 - "AGE: SIXTEEN"



Grandmother had died a year earlier after 70 years of marriage when grandfather came to visit.

I stood in my prom gown at the top of the stairs.

From below Grandfather gazed and began to weep.

"Why are you crying?", I asked.

He choked out, "You look exactly like your grandmother the day we married."

Prayer Girl

Flash Fiction Friday 55
is a story written in exactly 55 words.
Let the G-Man know if you write one
and read the ones of your fellow readers.

During Lent, please continue to pray for Karen's daughter. Here is the link to her prayer blog. Thank you. PG

Thursday 2/18/10 - "TIME IS LOST"


Intriguing picture and thought. '"Time is Lost". I thought about ways to slow the loss. When I slow down from the bustling activities of the day I can reflect on how precious are the moments of my life.

God intervened in my life with the gift of sobriety. He brought me to Alcoholics Anonymous and gave me the strength to not drink one-day-at-a-time. I reached out and took that offered gift. With God's help I was able to stop the constant loss of time. I lost a lot of time in the years I drank. I lost time to fear, anxiety, blackouts and constant thoughts about the next drink.

I frequently hear about freak accidents as I make my rounds visiting hospital patients. Many of the people I visit have come in through the emergency room. One minute they were enjoying nice meals, working around their homes, sleeping soundly - and the next thing, they are in the hospital.

How can I minimize the loss of precious time?

I can "stop and smell the roses". I can slow down, stop running, and allow myself space to enjoy the beauties of life.

Time slows when I am in prayer and meditation.

Keeping my eyes on where my feet are rather than ruminating about the past or projecting into the future seems to stop the swift passage of time.

Reflecting on the many things I am grateful for allows the moments to pass more slowly.

When I stop the busy activity of my day, go over to the tray of candles daughter gave me at Christmas, light each one with a prayer, watch them flicker, snuff them out one at a time, and watch the smoke rise, time seems to stop during that ritual.

Being in nature sitting on my back porch, walking the dog or just stopping for a moment as I go about the outdoor errands of my day slows down time. I look around me at the brilliance of the sunlight, the beauty of the sky, the colors of the flowers and trees, breath in the sweet smell of the air, and feel the breezes caress me.

Listening - really listening to another has a way of changing the passage of time, slowing it down. I don't understand how this happens. I just know it does.

Sitting quietly in church, paying total attention to all that is transpiring allows me to savor each moment longer. It stretches out time.

Food for thought! How do you prevent the loss of time?

God bless and please remember to go to Karen's prayer blog during Lent to pray for her daughter. Thank you.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: Time is lost by

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Wednesday 2/17/10 - "THAT INTUITIVE THOUGHT"


I received a request from a woman, Karen Kiefer, that I link to her prayer blog. I was happy to agree. Please be so kind as to visit and pray. This is her situation. Her daughter has been sick for over a year and fallen into a painful depression. She wrote that St. Dymphna is the patron saint of depression and is praying for healing/grace for her daughter at this Lenten season.



Prayer Girl
(Photo credits:
Trust in your instinct by

Solitude by

Monday, February 15, 2010

Tuesday 2/16/10 - "NEIGHBORHOOD OF MY MIND"


No matter how long I am sober and working the Alcoholics Anonymous program and no matter how long I have been a grateful member of All-Anon, I am still susceptible to my 'magic magnifying mind' (MMM) that likes to distort reality into a negative, sometimes dangerous, and a 'never a good outcome' neighborhood.

In reality, my worries and problems are pretty small, but once they enter the 'MMM' they multiply, grow, and can become quite ugly. Also, I don't need my own life to send me into that 'bad neighborhood'. The life situations of others, especially those I love can send me reeling into that place.

This is one of the reasons I so appreciate the idea that there is "my business" and "none of my business". Anxiety about others actions, decisions, and feelings are "none of my business". "My business" is to stay focused on positive solutions and share them with those in trouble - or with myself when I'm the one in trouble. I can only do this when I stay focused on myself and God.

Today's Al-Anon reader, "Hope for Today", 2/16, p. 47, includes the following:
"When I think myself into a troubled state, I will remember this: Don't look around, look up."
I need to look up to God to help me stay out of negativity, to pull me back from the brink of moving into that ugly neighborhood, and to pull me out when I have ventured in.

""It can help to replace obsessive thoughts with something positive, such as an Al-Anon slogan, the Serenity Prayer, or another comforting topic that has nothing to do with my problem." "Courage to Change", p. 306"

In addition to the Serenity Prayer, I have a few other prayers that I have learned along the way that I can repeat continuously until my mind turns around. I also can focus on lighting my 11 candles and praying. It takes time to get them all lit, say prayers, and snuff them out. This ritual sometimes allows me the time I need to pry my mind off of the problem and get it turned to the solution. Getting to a meeting or picking up the phone to speak with a program friend can also help move me to the positive. Even choosing to try a new recipe and getting busy in the kitchen can help. Thank God I have these tools.

This blog is for me today. I need it. If it helps another, I thank God.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: The Neighborhood by TY

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Monday 2/15/10 - "JUST FOR TODAY"



remember there are only two kinds of business - my business and none of my business.

mind ONLY my own business and I will stay out of everything else.

practice being satisfied.

be happy that husband and I attended and actually got to sit together at mass this evening.

be happy that husband and I shared a meal out together after mass.

stop, smell and appreciate the beauty of the three dozen red roses hubby gave me for valentine's day.

wear the "footprints in the sand" necklace hubby also gave me for valentine's day.

celebrate my daughter's recovery.

continue to celebrate my son's marriage to his wonderful wife.

have a positive attitude about life.

love myself and I will love you.

believe my prayers are being answered.

thank God for leading me to Alcoholics Anonymous where I found sobriety.

thank God for my continued sobriety.

thank God for bringing me to Al-Anon.

thank God for the emotional and mental balance I have found in Al-Anon.

utilize the three A(s) I learned in Al-Anon. I will remain open to any new awareness about myself, others, and life. I will accept them. I will take appropriate action.

be thankful for my AA, Al-Anon, blogging, and other friends.

be grateful for the many spiritual connections God has forged between myself and others.

remember to thank God for the special sponsor-sponsee relationships I have been blessed to have - my sponsor and my many sponsees.

light my prayer candles. I light candles for my husband, his daughter and her mother, my daughter, her sobriety and job situation, her sponsor, my son, his wife, their search for their first home, for myself, my blog, my sponsor, my sponsees, their sponsees, their families, and last, but not least for Lucky and Bert (dog and cat living under the same roof).

snuff out those candles and send my prayers up to God on the tendrils of smoke that drift upward.

practice patience, persistence, and prayer.

cherish this very precious life I have. I will cherish each loved one in my life.

experience no fear or anxiety. Should either visit me, I will immediately begin to pray then I will contact my sponsor or other recovering friend.

enjoy reading a book that has me totally absorbed.

appreciate the cold weather that is so rare in Southwest Florida.

know that it is by the grace of God that I am sober and have so many blessings.

say, "I love you" to the people who mean the most to me.

wish the friends I have met on our blogs a peaceful good-night.

Prayer Girl
(Things We Said Today by

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Sunday 2/14/10 - "LOVE ON VALENTINE'S DAY"


Eighteen and a half years ago my husband and I read "The Road Less Traveled" by M. Scott Peck to each other as we drove on our honeymoon. My parents watched my kids while Steve and I drove to Orlando where we stayed in my parents home and visited Disney World. We took a trip to Lake Wales, not far from Orlando, where we strolled the beautiful grounds of the Bok Tower Gardens. We went up to St. Augustine which is a quaint, beautiful, and historic city on the ocean. It was a lovely week I will never forget.

This book I obviously will never forget either. I have recently found myself thinking and talking about some of the ideas from that book. I think it is time to reread it. One idea that is playing in my mind has to do with the nature of true love. "....we are concerned for someone's spiritual growth..." (p. 118 of "The Road Less Traveled" by M. Scott Peck, M.D.)

Mature, healthy love is intimately concerned with the spiritual growth of the person loved. When this is mutual it is a powerful relationship. Yes! That sounds right to me. Love is a beautiful spiritual connection.

Happy Valentine's Day to all of you with love in your hearts for others. I consider all those I love to be my valentines. This includes my hubby, children, friends, and blogging friends.


Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: Valentine's Heart - WP by Lilyas)

Friday, February 12, 2010

Saturday 2/13/10 - "LOVING"






Prayer Girl

(Photo credits:
Prayer Girl's photo of flowers & footprints in the sand necklace [hanging down in the roses] from hubby
Young Love by
Young love by

Hearts by

bridal couple in Rom by

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Friday 2/12/10 - "ADVERTISEMENT"

Before you read my Flash Fiction Friday 55,
I would like to thank Andrea
who sent me
to pick up a Prolific Blogger Award from

Sitka at All Gods Creatures.

You make me happy.



Having trouble with step 3?

Step 3: "Made a decision to turn our will and our lives over to the care of God AS WE UNDERSTOOD HIM."

Wonder what God is like?

I wrote a classified advertisement.



Ad canceled:
God found.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: The World by

Flash Fiction Friday 55
is a story written in exactly 55 words.
Let the G-Man know if you write one
and read the ones of your fellow writers.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010



I left this morning early to run errands, go to a noon women's Alcoholics Anonymous meeting, and then to the gym. When I finally got back home, I walked into a home with news I did not want to hear. We had been "off line", without internet since shortly after I left. :(

It is 11:00 p.m. now and we are finally back "on line" as of just a few minutes ago. Hurray! :)

It's too late for me to write anything that makes much sense. I just wanted you to know why I hadn't been commenting today. I did get a few in before I left.

Tomorrow morning I begin my day with a visit to a sponsee and we will be working the first step in Al-Anon using "Paths to Recovery". I am setting the stage right now for this meeting tomorrow - asking God to prepare both of us and to be present as we talk.

It's supposed to be pretty cold tonight, low about 41, so I'm grateful we have our nice warm comforter on the bed. It never gets too cold here in Southwest Florida, but tonight will be one of those unusual nights. We have had more of those kind of super cold snaps this winter than I can remember having in a long time.

I admit there was a feeling of loss, of things not being quite right when I was internet-less. However, now I expect to have my internet uninterrupted once again. I am happy and grateful.

Peace and love to you all.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: Internet Love by

Wednesday 2/10/10 - "AND THE GREATEST OF THESE? LOVE!"



Prayer Girl
(Photo credits:
Mother and Child by
Mother Teresa by neysha
My endless love by
The Day the Earth Stood Still by m kara)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Tuesday 2/9/10 - "LIFE UNPREDICTED"


Probably the biggest lessons I receive from visiting patients in the hospital as a pastoral care assistant are the constant reminders that life is totally unpredictable. Unexpected happenings can come from any quarter at any time. Circumstances of such an unpredictable nature often bring people to the hospital.

I visited a man in critical care yesterday. He was totally lucid with four IV stands positioned at his right side with maybe 6 or more lines running to his chest where they were providing his body with the solutions he needed to live. When I enter a room I have no idea why the person is there unless they choose to tell me. This was his story:

I was with him a long time, almost an hour. It took that long to piece together his story. At least three nurses attended him as we talked. They gave permission for me to be there. I will call this gentleman Bud. The first two things he told me over and over were that he had no feeling at all in his arms and he could not move them. He also kept telling me he was a "terminal case". I asked if they had told him that and he said, "no", but he just knew it was so. I came to believe over the course of my time with him that what he may have been really saying was that if he could not use his arms, it might as well be terminal. (Just a guess on my part.)

Bud proceeded to tell me through the course of our visit what happened. Somehow he became trapped between the toilet tank and the wall in his home where he lives alone. His arms were pinned in an upward position. He just kept yelling for help hoping a neighbor would hear him. I don't know how long he was there, but it was a long time. Finally someone heard him and the fire department came. They had a very difficult time freeing him.

His kidneys weren't functioning either. Though he told me he was a "terminal case", when I offered to pray with him and asked what he might want me to pray for, he said the return of his health. I so understood this. The mind was thinking the worse, but the spirit was hoping for the best. We talked about feelings of powerlessness and the power of God's love.

I have seen so many situations both in this volunteer job and when I worked in nursing homes where people were clearly on their way out of this life and then suddenly they rally. The number of days of our lives are unpredictable.

Maybe I ended up staying with him so long so I could meet his daughter who arrived just before I was ready to leave. It was a blessing. I had prayed with her father alone and then she and I were able to pray with him as well. I found out from her that when her father underwent surgery one of the things that was determined was that there was no dead tissue in his arms. There is hope. Will he live? Will he die? Will he regain the use of his arms? Only God knows. I do know he is getting the best possible care available and if it is God's will, he will live and recover the use of his arms.

The message of the day was unpredictability and "powerlessness". I am reminded every Monday of the blessings of good health and I am filled with gratitude. Because the unexpected can visit at any time, I want to stay connected to God. I practice the principles of the Alcoholics Anonymous and Al-Anon programs and continue to work the 12 steps. They keep the power I lack available.

Thank you God for my health and the beautiful lessons you give me each Monday.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: Rusty leaf by

Sunday, February 7, 2010

Monday 2/8/10 - "TODAY"


Today was filled with Al-Anon program activity. I met with an Al-Anon sponsee first thing this morning to discuss problems she is having with step 9. She is finding it difficult, in fact impossible, at this point to forgive herself, make amends to herself. We talked quite a while and I gave her several suggestions. The first - she will pray for the willingness to be willing to forgive herself. The second - she will pray for herself the same way she would pray for someone she has a resentment towards. From experience she and I both know that if we resent someone and pray daily for them for as long as it takes, the resentment will pass. We pray that the person will have all the blessings we would like to see in our own lives. Sometimes this is difficult or we aren't "feelin' it", but we pray nonetheless. It works.

After my meeting with my sponsee, we attended my home group Al-Anon meeting. The topic of the meeting perfectly dovetailed with our one-on-one meeting. It came from "Hope for Today", February 7th, p. 38. Two excerpts stood out for me. They were:

"My constant comparing and competing gradually edged most people out of my life. Ultimately I was not even good enough for myself, an attitude that led me to harsh self-abuse."

".... beneath my extreme competitiveness lurks the true nature of the problem - pride and fear along with a sense of inadequacy. "

I could identify. I have had to deal with my own self-critical, censoring, and judgmental nature as well as that feeling that I'm just not good enough. All of these have improved in a big way over the 24+ years in Alcoholics Anonymous and 5 1/2 years I have worked the Al-Anon program. Thank you God.

After the meeting, I had time to run home, let puppy out of his cage, put him outside and even play a little. We played throw the big bone, a partial bone, and a ball all at the same time. That way I was able to actually get one of them out of his mouth and throw it again. LOL

Then it was off to meet with another Al-Anon sponsee to do the 6th step. We met for an hour and a half and it was satisfying for both of us. It doesn't get much better than this. Life is good. God is good. It is wonderful to watch someone change and begin to feel a measure of peace and serenity in their life.

From there it was off to the grocery store for some Super Bowl goodies for hubby and me. I was keeping it simple for Enchanted Oak today so I just picked up some cheeses, crackers, shrimp, and strawberries. When I got home I was here to stay. Hurray!

I made the cocktail sauce for our shrimp using plenty of horseradish and a real lemon in the ketchup. After this prep I took a few minutes to light my candles, say prayers for special people, and then blow them out sending those prayers to God.

I just watched the Saints come out from halftime, kick an 'on-side kick' and proceed to barrel down the field for a touchdown. I remember the day when you couldn't have paid me to watch football. People can change. LOL

Tomorrow is my hospital volunteer day so I am preparing mentally and spiritually for the time I will visit patients.

God bless all of you.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: simple butterfly shot by



Enchanted Oak is doing a Simple Things Challenge this weekend. Post about simple things you cherish, link back to her blog, and leave a comment so she knows you have posted about simple things. For each post or comment on her blog $2 will be donated to a medical clinic in Haiti.

It brought a very simple pleasure to spend time reflecting on simple things that please me. The more I thought about it, the more I found.

Wind or even breezes and I have something very special going on. I always experience these movements of air as something very spiritual. Wind has a way of speaking to the deepest part of my soul. I just love it.

I am also totally in love with meadows - all meadows, but especially ones full of brightly colored flowers. Many years ago, I wrote my favorite poem about a meadow filled with a riot of color. Simple, but beautiful.

I appreciate experiencing the birth of a new day as I sit on my porch. It begins with grays and a damp coolness in the air. Very soon, the sun creeps into the backyard then gradually into the porch and the moisture in the air begins to lift. The air is fresh and clear and clean. Simple and exquisite.

How wonderful it is to be caressed by a breeze, touched on the cheek, and kissed by my husband - all in the same moment.

How perfect is that first morning taste of my home brewed espresso with a splash of sweet half and half. Nothing could be better than this very simple wake-up call.

Walking into an Alcoholics Anonymous or Al-Anon meeting and receiving a loving, welcoming smile from my sponsor, a sponsee, or other friend is a simple, but glorious thing.

There are so many more, but I want to keep this a simple list.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credits: meadow flowers, Simple beauty by plasticastle)

Friday, February 5, 2010

Saturday 2/6/10 - "UNMASKED"






Prayer Girl

(Photo credits:
Masquerade by Lisa Townsend
Unmasked by

Note to Enchanted Oak: I will blog the "Simple Things Challenge" tomorrow.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Friday 2/5/10 - "STOP THE WORLD"



Stop the world and get me off!

Stop my mind, that racing grind.
Lift the loathsome blogger's block that hinders free word flow.

Done with seeking self, a constant chore.
Tired! Let futile struggles cease.

Stop the world.
Give all to God.

Hear me calling.
Help me Father.
This child is suffering.
Heed my cry.

Prayer Girl
(Photo credit: See the WORLD by

Flash Fiction Friday 55
is a story written in exactly 55 words.
Let the G-Man know if you write one
and read the ones of your fellow writers.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010




Prayer Girl

P.S. - I heard the following at two different meetings today.

At an Al-Anon meeting:

D - Don't
E - Even

T - Think

A - About
C - Changing
H - Him or Her

At an Alcoholics Anonymous meeting:

Procrastination is a wonderful thing if you are suicidal.

Monday, February 1, 2010

Tuesday 2/2/10 - "SIMPLICITY"


Why do I crave simplicity? My mind has always been extremely analytical, inquisitive, needing answers, and wanting to understand. It tends to be in constant motion. I look around me and the world seems to be in chaos. My mind used to be in this same kind of chaos. I saw the world through a "magic magnifying mind" that complicated everything and I wanted to run. It made me crazy. My alcoholism led me into the insanity that alcoholics experience.

Then I found recovery in Alcoholics Anonymous and the twelve steps. The steps freed me from the rat race of my own mind. I found a way to see myself, others, and my relationships clearly. I had a spiritual awakening and a bond with my Higher Power, God, was forged. I found a way of living and thinking that slowed my churning mind. I found a simpler life and way of thinking. I found peace and serenity. The twelve steps provided a framework for dealing with who I am.

When I have complicated things in my mind I can find simplicity in the slogans of our program.
I can repeat phrases like "Live and Let Live", "There But For the Grace of God Go I", "Keep it Simple Sweetheart" or "Easy Does It".

There is simplicity in prayer. The Serenity Prayer, the Lord's Prayer or a prayer of my own words simplifies things and brings peace to my soul.

When I am disquieted I can find a calmer center when I sit in 'the silence' with God or allow myself to appreciate the beauty and wonder of nature all around me. It sometimes helps to sit and write - to pull out my journal and allow my thoughts to flow out of me or to write a letter I will never deliver.

If my mind is churning it will often slow down when I talk with my sponsor or a friend in recovery. I always feel calmer when I am in an AA or Al-Anon meeting.

I crave simplicity. I think I will do some of the things I wrote about today to find that lovely state of mind and body.

God bless.

Prayer Girl

(Photo credits top to bottom:
Simplicity by
Simplicity by
Simplicity by Lady