CS Lewis Quotes

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

The End

Hi, I'm Mary. My blog is over there on the sidebar. I'm Liz's youngest daughter. If you're reading this blog, it's likely you know who I am already.

My mom shared everything with me. I checked her e-mail for her sometimes, I ordered books for her from the library when she was too busy to sit down and take care of those things herself, and so this explains why I am here, now, and able to speak with you all.

My mother was a wonderful woman. Fortunately and unfortunately, our Father in Heaven thought so as well. He brought her home with him yesterday afternoon. And she is no longer with us.

This all happened very quickly, and was very unexpected. I apologize to those of you who haven't heard yet and are reading it here for the first time.

My family and I appreciate all of the calls that have been made and all of the people who have visited so far.

This will be the only blog I will ever put here on this site. I think the only person who would ever be able to contribute anything of worth here would be my mother. I will continue blogging on my site, and my e-mail is there in case anyone has any questions.

I'm sure my mother would have wanted me to say goodbye to all of you for her. I'll be moderating comments and things on this blog, but other than that, this will be the last post ever put here unless I find it appropriate to post any un-completed drafts.

I'm keeping this blog here so that others may enjoy the insight she has given, and the wonderful thoughts that she has shared with so many since it's creation.

If you'd like to know more about what happened, I hope this will help.


Wednesday's Words of Wisdom......

To be home alone is a haven.

But of what use is a haven

without someone to share it?

--Liz Armbruster

Thursday, September 24, 2009

A Flood of Tears............

There has been flooding in Georgia this week. Torrential rain fell over the weekend and on in to Monday. The first picture here is of kids being evacuated from Clarkdale Elementary School on Monday afternoon.......the second picture is the same school on Tuesday morning......

I don't know any of these children, but I know the school.

I spent 13 years living across the street from this small, neighborhood school. When I moved into the house I was a young mom with 3 children, ages 4, 2 1/2 and 1. When we left Georgia 13 years later, I was a much more seasoned and experienced mother of 6 children, and every one of them had attended this school.

Though it's been 9 years since we lived there, we still have many, many fond memories of Clarkdale. I would venture to say that at least one of my grown children still has their 5th grade, graduating class t-shirt from Clarkdale. It was a great school to grow up with. An anomaly in today's world of education, the school had only about 400 students from Kindergarten to 5th grade. The class sizes were kept small and they would work together on many projects to help and encourage one another. It was a family as well as a school. After all these years, they still have the same Principal and many of the same teachers.

News reports say the the school will most likely not re-open. The damage was too severe, and the fear of future flooding dictates that they re-build elsewhere.

This video shows the damage more extensively than the pictures. Around the 1 minute mark the camera pans past a yellow house. That's the house my family called home for so many years.


They say that home is where the heart is.....I found out this week that at least part of my heart is still in Georgia.

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

I'm Thinking RB's..............

I have a blog friend named Robert Brault. He goes by 'rb' when he comments on my blog, or on his own blog, for that matter. You should check him out if you ever need a good quote on.....well, just about anything!

Need a good quote about parents?
I'm thinking RB's:
"If you have a dad, you have a hope,
and if you have a mom, you have a prayer."

On marriage?
I'm thinking RB's:
"Marriage is nature's way of ensuring
that a woman picks up
some mothering experience
before she has her first child."

On friendship?

I'm thinking RB's:

"Friends never ask
favors of their friendship.
They ask favors of each other,
making it clear that their
friendship is not at stake."

So, the next time you need a good quote. Remember to think RB's!! Just be sure to tell him that I sent you!

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Thoughts on Mortality.......

Written By Lizabeth Armbruster on September 19th, 2009


At what point in your life do you start wondering if you'll still be around for your next birthday?

Is it when you hear the doctor say the word 'cancer'?

Is it when you start 'getting up there' in age?

Is it when a guy in your office dies unexpectedly of a heart attack at 50?

I don't mean to spread gloom and doom. I'm not trying to be morbid. It's just something that's been on my mind. At what point in your life do you realize that any upcoming birthdays may be limited in number?

I have an aunt that I visited with recently. She told me that she'll be 91 on her next birthday. Obviously, she plans to be around for it. But is she planning on being here in 5 years? 10? She must certainly know that her time is limited.

I have a friend who recieved a diagnosis of cancer last year. At the time, she was 54. It was pronounced 'very aggressive' and needed immediate treatment. Did she wonder if she'd be here for her 55th? (By the way, she underwent the aggressive treatment and is doing great!)

A man I know at church just underwent a quadruple by-pass. He is probably in his late 50's early 60's. Did he wonder if he'd make it through the surgery?

I turned 51 this year. I realize that to some of you that's fairly young. (Though some of you probably think it's pretty old, too!) I, myself, think that 51 is young. Then I remember that my mother was only 2 years older than I am now when she died of cancer. And that makes me feel old. I consider how quickly the years have flown. And wonder what I've done with them. I remember some of them quite clearly....others not so much. And I realize that my time is limited. I'm pretty sure that I have at least another good 30 years or so. Maybe even 40. But I know I'm on the downhill side of the slope.



(This post was written by my mother exactly 10 days before she passed away. I found it as a draft, and decided to post it for her, for all of you. I think the Lord prepares us for things we don't see coming, in ways that we never realize until we look back upon them. I'm greatful that she had written this, and hope that it provides as much comfort for you as it has for me.
Much love, Mary)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The 5 Senses of Memory........

I spent almost a week visiting family in Minnesota. While there I was bombarded on every side by memories. It was almost overwhelming. I was on memory overload. Here's what I came up with:

Minnesota Memories

What does a memory taste like?
Like Tom Thumb donuts,
and Swedish Rye Bread,
and cousin Wendy's chocolate chip cookies.

What does a memory sound like?
Like my brother's laugh,
and the call of the loon,
and the train whistle on an early summer morning,

What does a memory smell like?
Like cardamom seeds,
and lilac bushes,
and my dad's aftershave.

What does a memory look like?
Like old family photos,
and Bert, the Buffalo,
and a sailboat on the lake.

What does a memory feel like?
Like my dad's whiskers,
and a hug from my sister,
and the warm summer breeze.

How about you? What do your memories taste like? Smell like. Look like. Feel like. And sound like. Share a memory with me. And let me know you remember any of the same things I do.

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Wednesday's Words of Wisdom, My Own.........

Privacy is an illusion.

We only think it exists,
the same way we think that
the puppy in the shop window
will remain a puppy forever.

Or that someday, the children
will actually remember
when it's their turn to do the dishes.

Privacy is a wish, a hope, a dream.
But, in the end
It's only an illusion.

--Liz Armbruster

Monday, September 14, 2009

Are those Christmas Bells I hear.....?

The kids are back in school. There is a slight (very welcome) chill in the air. I've flipped my calendar to September. And panic is setting in.

Because these things are all signs that Christmas is just around the corner. We have entered "The Season".

Never mind that I still have 4 birthdays to celebrate between now and Christmas. Never mind that we still have Halloween and Thanksgiving yet to come. Nevermind that I am ahead of even the most ardent retailer in my Christmas quest. I'm still worried about Christmas.

My worries? Will Jacob be able to come home for Christmas? If he can come, how much will I have to pay for a ticket to get him here? What do you get for the man who has everything and needs nothing? (my dad) Or for the kid who has everything, wants for nothing, but still needs something to open on Christmas morning?

I'm done shopping for Mary. I've actually been done with her for months (shopping, I mean!). And I have gotten a few little things here and there for the boys in my life.

But what if I get inspired and want to make something for someone for Christmas? If that's the case, then the ispiration had better come soon! It takes time to put these things together, you know. And what if I buy the wrong size? Or the wrong color? Or the wrong game?

You can see where this might be an issue. Maybe I'll just go on strike this Christmas. Maybe we'll just relax, enjoy each other's company, watch a movie and eat take out. Nah.....It'll never happen.

Now if you'll excuse me....I think I have to go call Travelocity.

Friday, September 11, 2009

Obama's School Speech.....

Obama spoke on Tuesday to school children all across the nation.

Parents were nervous before the speech. What would he talk about? Would he indoctrinate our children? Would there be brain-washing involved?

In Minnesota, where I was visiting over the weekend, people were upset because the speech was due to take place on the first day of school. Teachers are trying to organize their classes, get to know their students, establish routines.

As a result of all these things, many schools chose to 'opt out'. I don't know yet if my grandson watched the speech, but I know that my two high school boys did not. One of the schools did tape the speech and is planning on showing it today. Only students with parental permission may watch it. My other son wasn't even given the choice.

I am bothered by this. I know that I've complained once or twice about Obama. And I will be the first to say that I don't agree with a lot of the things that he's doing. BUT....he is the President of the United States!! The Commander in Chief. The Top Dog.

I don't see where individual school administrators get away with NOT showing his speech. It makes me angry that they made the decision for all parents that this speech would not be appropriate for our children to watch. It is my opinion (and that's usually what you get here) that ALL schools should have shown the speech. I think they had an obligation to show the speech. As I said before, by NOT showing it, they took away my children's right to hear their president address them in a school setting. If parent's don't want their kids to see it, they can send a note to the school or keep them home. But that is the PARENT'S decision, not the school's.

I think that if parents are that concerned about a President's speech, then they should watch it, too. Talk to their children about it. Maybe even watch it with their children, then have a back and forth discussion about it. Not just his school address, but all his speeches. We need to be raising children who are aware, not hidden away. Who can see through rhetoric and politics and pick out the important information. Who can respect the office of president even when they may not agree with some of his policies.

I watched the speech on the internet. We will probably watch it again over the weekend...as a family. And talk about it together. I think Obama did a great job. I think he was right on track with the message he gave the kids. I may even pull a couple of quotes from his speech and post them on my kitchen cabinets (that's where I post things I want my kids to see day-after-day).

And how about we let the schools be schools and the parents be parents.

Thursday, September 10, 2009

I'm B-a-a-a-a-ck..........

I realize that it's been quite a while since I've posted. There are a number of reasons for this.

1. I really haven't had much to say lately.....lucky you!

2. I've been busy getting the kids back into the school routine. Sam started August 10th, Peter on August 19th, and Mary on the 24th. Can we not coordinate this people??!!

3. I was out of town. I went to the lovely, air-conditioned, state of Minnesota, where I ate state fair mini-donuts, went to the Mall of America, spent a wonderful afternoon on a lake, and visited with family. Most importantly, my 85 year old father. He is doing remarkably well, thanks for asking. He has Parkinson's, so is a little shaky and moves a little slower than he used to, but all in all, I think he's doing great!! (I also spent time with two brothers, one sister, a BIL, a SIL, and and various nieces, nephews, a couple of cousins and an aunt.)

But now.....I'm back. The kids are going strong in school, vacation is over, and I may just have a thing or two to say about a variety of subjects.

So, if you're up for it.......I'll keep on writing, you keep on reading. And let's have some fun!