Friday, April 30, 2010

PA Farmer's Market - Green Dragon

I needed fruits and vegetable this morning, so I went to The Green Dragon, a local farmer's market that was bursting with produce and people.
This shows only about 1/10 of it - it's a huge place!

Strawberries from the Carolina's

Tomatoes, sugar peas, 
berries, berries and more berries, rhubarb.

Cantaloupe, watermelon, oranges

Realized I only took pictures of the produce, there are also deli stands and stands of home made baked goods and ice cream. And too much other stuff to mention -everything from beach towels to socks to watches to laptops (how buys a laptop at a farmer's market?)

On Monday - I'm excited to post my first author interview and excited that it's with Jason Boyett
We talk about his new book "Oh me of little faith" and about running.

Happy Friday - Enjoy your weekend!

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Thoughts from an Evening with Donald Miller

On Monday evening, I heard Donald Miller speak at Messiah College. He shared some great thoughts, some rambling thoughts that almost lost me and some thoughts about being naked. That just scared some of you and sparked interest in the rest of you - so to clarify, he was talking about Adam and Eve. 

Here's a few of the thoughts he shared. These are not direct quotes from him - but what I heard him say in my own words. 

God is creating a story - an epic story, that encompasses all of creation. Within that story, each of us has a sub-story that we are the director of. God gives us life - a blank sheet of paper and a set of markers - and says, "Go crazy, have fun." We choose what is put on that paper. If we want to make a purple horse, we can. 

Having said that - there are many things in each of our environments that influence what we do with our markers and paper. It ranges from our childhood to our education, to conflict we face, to people we hang out withto the advertisements we see all the time.

I don't remember if he said this or I just thought it, but what we draw on our paper is also influenced by things that happen to us that we can't control - abuse/accidents/others' choices. We can't control those things, but we can control how we react and respond to them. 

Don illustrated his thoughts about how we can be controlled by our environment by sharing a story about controlling others when he was in band in high school. Students had to walk through the large band hall to get to their lockers. Don was at the other end of the room and had a metronome (instrument that produces regular beats) As a student entered the room, he set the metronome to match their gait, then slowly sped it up. Most of the students started walking faster with the beat without realizing it. He was thrilled with his power to control them for the thirty seconds or so it took them to reach their lockers.

So is your drawing ever influenced by an unseen metronome? Don says that in our culture the metronome that influences us more than we realize is commercialism. We think for our drawing/life to be complete, we need that car or those jeans or that soap. If we get that - everything in our life will be better. Even if you don't watch TV or read magazines with advertisements - how often do you want something because 
"everyone else has it?" 

Don went on to say that our relationship with God is also influenced by this metronome. We can see Jesus as a product to make us happy or to get us what we want, rather than a being to have a relationship with. And we think that God has to give us this or that to make us complete.

So I'm pondering how I view and interact with God. To realize what influence commercialism has on my relationship with him - I need to stop and think. Stop, unplug, be still and think about why I do some of the things I do.
What are you drawing on your paper today? And why are you drawing that?

Donald shared many more thoughts, but my brain couldn't remember all of them, plus this blog post would be way too long.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Live Today Well

"It's how we spend our time that really matters. If you are fed up with the way you have come to interact with time, change it." -Marcia Wieder

Great reminder that we make choices daily about how we spend our time. When next week, month or year rolls around, what are you going to wish you did today? Or what memories do you want to create today to think back on when you're ninety? 

You have twenty-four hours today - live it well!

Sunday, April 25, 2010

Sunday Saying - Fool or Wise

"When faced with a polarity, the fool chooses one pole and disparages the other. But a wise man stands between the two and feels the energy that passes between them."   
- Roy H. Williams

Friday, April 23, 2010

Friday's Fave Five

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I've had an unorganized week, especially the last few days. I have a number of different projects happening and I'm having a tough time getting anything significant finished, because I keep moving from project to project ... ugh. So I have to think hard to find five favorites of this week ... 

          1. Saturday was great - my husband and I went out for breakfast with our college son. Then I went to a jewelry show at my neighbor. Then a movie, shopping and dinner with a friend. 
         2. On Monday, at our running club's weekly run - a few of us spent a relaxing hour in a friend's outdoor hot tub after the run. 

         3. Love flowers - so I'm happy my lilacs are blooming.

         4. Reading a few great books this week - 
"Oh, me of little faith" by Jason Boyett
"Church in the Making" by Ben Arment 
"Picking Dandelions" by Sarah Cunningham
"The Bible as Improv" by Ron Martoia
Yes, I'm reading all these at the same time - told you I'm bouncing from one thing to another. 

         5. Last weekend I planned a weekly menu for the first time in years and actually stuck to it this week ... well, expect for one night, but for this week, that's was good. 

Hope your week has a few faves in it ... 

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Planting Trees - Self Control

Self-Control ... I've been thinking about it the past few days since it was the topic of the Blog Carnival this week. You'd think since I'm thinking about self-control, I would self-control myself to get a blog post written. But no, I only thought about self control, but didn't actually practice it.

Now it's 10AM on Blog Carnival Day and I'm writing. Getting blog posts written has been a challenge for me recently. I'm writing the last few chapters of my memoir (yes!) and I can't seem to pull myself out of that to update here. Which I'm okay with because I know it's just for a season and yet I miss the connection with this world. 
(waving to you like a long-lost friend)  

Self-control makes me think about all the things I want to do, but have a hard time getting done. And I came up with this definition: 
Self-Control ... it's what separates the accomplished from the unaccomplished.

That's it - there's no magic formula, no secret key, no power drink. Self-control is doing the same thing constantly over a period of time that causes you to accomplish something you desire ... whether that's growing beautiful flowers, eating healthy, running a marathon, having an organized office or writing a book. 

According to Jonah Lehrer self-control is a muscle that responds to exercise or lack thereof. So if you want self-control to accomplish big things, start with the small things. For an organized office - pick up one thing in your office every day and put it away. Every. Day. If you are lying in bed and remember you forget that day, get up and go do it. Don't justify it by saying you'll put away two things tomorrow ... because then your self-control muscle was not be exercised that day. 

The best day to plant a tree was 25 years ago - the second best day is today. - Chinese Proverb
Beautiful tree near a friend's house

What tree do you need to begin to plant today to have the strength, fruit and beauty you want in the future? 

This post is part of a blog carnival hosted by Bridget Chumbly. Go to One Word at A Time to read more posts about Self-Control.

Why Are You Where You Are?

"Whenever you find yourself on the side of majority, you should pause and reflect." - Tim Ferriss

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Sunday Saying - Magic Show

"Our faith is not about magic, it’s about partnering with God to see remarkable things happen through faithfulness and consistency over a long-period of time. If we buy into the instant-results mindset of our culture (that is depressed and confused itself) we will become very frustrated with God. God has a system for growing food. If one farmer does no work, but prays and sings to God, and another farmer does work, and does not pray or sing to God, then the farmer who prayed will starve and the farmer who worked will eat, because even though the second farmer didn’t acknowledge God, he understood God’s ways and he adhered to the principles God created. The first farmer was just looking for a magic show." - Donald Miller

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Wish I could hear this teaching series ...

Your thoughts about their thoughts shared here? 

Friday, April 16, 2010

Friday's Fave Five

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Click on the image above to see more Friday's Fave posts.

My Five Favorite Things this Week

1. Completing six miles in the Garden Spot Village Marathon Relay on Saturday. 

2. Slowly, but surely getting over this darn cold. I had a slight cold before the race and I figured running would make it worse and it did. I was sicker on Saturday night then I've been in a long time. 

3. Though you are sick, you can still hang out with family - so Sunday afternoon I went to my sister's house, because my other sister from VA was here visiting.  (I have 4 sisters - 3 on earth1 in Heaven)

4. Registering for the BookExpo America in New York in May. Wasn't really considering going, but a few planets aligned and I'm registered. I have a ride and a place to stay. It's for anyone in the book industry. As a writer, it's a step ahead of where I am - it's for published authors, which I am not. But I'm going with Janelle Hertzler who is published. She has a book signing and podcast while there. 

5. Most importantly, I had a few good reminders this week about not assuming I know what someone else is feeling, but instead making sure I ask what they feel/think/want/need. 

What has been a fave part of your week? 

Monday, April 12, 2010

The Importance of Story in my Life

This post is about the importance of story in my life. It is an entry into Chris Brogan's giveaway of 100 copies of Donald Miller's book "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years."

I was born into a controlled world - I escaped through stories in books. Then in my early twenties, I began to realize I had choices about how my life story did or didn't turn out. I slowly made my own choices, rather than allow my environment and circumstances to control me. Good change takes time, but over the next decade my life became better.  

In my late thirties, my husband helped me take another step in realizing the choices we have in writing the story we want to. We sold our business, put household stuff in storage, packed a motorhome and traveled the country for six months with our three sons. Life was good!

Until ...

A day in May when it all changed - we accidently met five semi-trucks on a highway. My husband and sons were fine, I was not. My injuries were massive and threatened my life. Somehow I defied the odds and lived. "Miracle!" The doctor said, "but I'm not sure you'll walk again."

The lessons of the previous decades lay dormant, until the words of a good therapist brought them back. "To some degree, your level of recovery is up to you." A glimmer of hope emerged as I realized I had choices in how this unwanted portion of my story turned out. I did every exercise given to me, plus a few extra. And I prayed. I did research and had a few repair surgeries, did more exercises and prayed more. 

I love books, so I read stories. Stories of people that overcame the "impossible." They helped me breathe and gave me hope. Though life would be different than I dreamed of, a good life was still possible. I soon realized that I retained and gained so much more from stories than from 3 or 5 or 7 point 'teaching' books.  

Last year, I went to a conference called STORY. The inspiration from this event was amazing and the long-term effects are still unseen. Then I read "A Million Miles in a Thousand Years" by Donald Miller. Wow! This gave me even more information about how to live the story that I want to. 

Part of living the best story I can, involves telling and writing my story to share with others. As I work on that, I pray I can tell in an interesting story, because I know the value of great stories.

The Importance of Story in my Life is summed up with one word - priceless!

Garden Spot Village Marathon Relay

On Saturday by 7AM, hundreds of cars were rolling into New Holland, PA. The line into Garden Spot Village was slow, but organized and we were soon parked. The staff and volunteers at the race were wonderful - hats off to the race director Scott Miller and his team!

For the start, it was about 40 and breezy - about 20 degrees colder than I'd prefer, but with sweatshirts and jackets it was manageable. We meet up with the other "Running ... Because I Can" runners - we had 2 teams of four. 
(missing two runners)
Notice all the jackets on the ground - taken off for the picture to show off our great shirts. Shirts were compliments of Allegheny Valley Yogurt - the BEST yogurt in the country made half a mile from my house from cows I see grazing every day and they truly are happy cows :) 
And our smiles - you don't really want to know the jokes and/or conversations those are from. 
A relay involves a baton, so we practiced the hand-off - after all, we would be running at top-notch speeds ;) In reality, most team members stopped and hugged at the transfers. And most of us hate running with something in our hand, so the batons spent most of the morning in the car and were handed to the last runners right before the finish. 

There was a lot of energy in the air as about 900 people started the race at 8AM, while about 150 relay runners took the provided shuttle buses to the relay transfer spots for their sections of the race. 
I was scheduled for the 4th leg, which meant I waited until 11:45 to run. (I didn't complain about this at all, not once ...) We drove to each of the transfer spots to cheer on team members and watch the runners through beautiful Lancaster County.
Thankfully temps warmed up to about 60, but it stayed windy all day. Finally, a friend who was a bike marshal for the race told me that the runner that will hand off to me was only 10 minutes away. It was time to get this body ready - walk, potty break, stretch ... repeat 6 times and off I went!

I had started with a slight cold/sore throat/runny nose on Friday, so I loaded my pockets with tissues and lozenges. Other than an annoying sore throat, I felt great! I stuck with my plan to run 8 minutes and walk 2 minutes and was happy with the strength in my legs - yes, even the peg. 
Happy to see friends near the finish line.
A teammate joined me to cross the finish line. My hands are in the air - thrilled to be finished and happy with the time. I ran 6 miles in 1 hour, 11 minutes.
Duct tape comes in handy, when an idea hits a few days before a race. I think for the next race, I'll get a shirt or shorts printed with my info on. 
Tired, but happy with medal in hand.

Today, I'm still recovering from my cold, but praising God for bodies that heal and thinking of the next race. 
You want to join me? 

First and last photo - Jerry Oberholtzer, All others - Linda Wingard

Friday, April 09, 2010

Hope wins ...

Life can be tough and if you are in the middle of something hard right now, I'm so sorry. Pain of any kind sucks! Sometimes it's hard to have any hope and it seems impossible to think of brighter days. 

I've been there - felt that. 

Accident in California on May 20, 2004
I was a marathon runner pre-accident and woke from being in a medical coma for ten days to find out that I almost died, they almost amputated my leg and even if it healed, I might never walk again, due to that injury and several other severe ones (my pelvis and right femur were also shattered)

About two weeks post-accident - the docs didn't know if my left leg would still need to be amputated and/or if I would ever walk again.

Over the next few years, I became depressed from all my pain - physically and emotionally - and the lifelong effects of my injuries. I wrote my obituary. And I thought of ways to make that obituary needed. 

I'm not speaking from beyond the grave - so you know hope won over depression. Thank God!

Praise God - I healed better than anyone expected - 
though the scars are many.
With time, counseling and help from my creator, I found glimmers of hope again and learned to do "Did what I can, with what I have, where I am." (Roosevelt) As I did that, my hope was watered and grew. 

Last year I competed in a marathon relay for the first time, doing 4 1/2 miles - local TV clip about it. Today is another step forward (actually it's hundreds of steps :) ... I am competing in the marathon again, on a relay team. I will do 6 miles. I do a combo run/walk - run 8 minutes, walk 2 minutes and repeat until I'm finished.

So when life hands you pain - breathe deep and know there is hope. Life might not be what it was, but it's still worth being alive. "That thing" that is causing you pain is not good, but there's other good in life. I don't view my injuries as good, but I have hope in spite of them and I'm celebrating how well I've recovered today!

I'll soon have a new website which will have more info/pics about my journey the past 5+ years and info about my upcoming memoir. 

WebCam for Garden Spot Village Marathon

Garden Spot Village 
Marathon WebCam

On Saturday at 8AM about 1,000 people will be at this spot to begin running a full marathon, a half marathon or be part of a relay team. I will be here cheering, but my run doesn't start until about 11 or 11:30.

About 9:15 or so, the first finishers of the half-marathon will begin crossing the finish line here. 

I am running on a 4-person relay team which will complete the full 26.2 miles. I am doing the last 6 miles and should cross the finish here sometime between 12 and 1PM with a peach shirt that says "Running ... Because I Can" on it. 

Friday's Fave Five

My Five Favorite Things this Week

1. The weather!! Yes, I know it's boring to talk about the weather, but we had temps in the 80's for a few days and I loved it!

3. Saw/heard Philip Yancey at Messiah College on Wednesday evening. He's a great writer and speaker ... and always says something to make you think. 

4. Massage - had a great massage from the lovely Monica, she's the best in the biz.

5. Getting our running club's shirts for the marathon relay tomorrow!
The girl in the back trying to catch up - that's me :)

I am running the 4th leg (6 miles) of a four-person relay team at the Garden Spot Village Marathon. Race starts tomorrow at 8AM, I will probably be running around 11 or so. Our club "Running ... Because I Can" has two teams in the race. I'm excited for all the runners, especially for Kim, who's doing her first race - that's always a combination of excitement and terror. Run on - Kim!!

Make the most of your weekend by 
"Doing what you can, with what you have, 
where you are!" - Roosevelt

Thursday, April 08, 2010

Why do you do that?

"The reason you have a front lawn?"

"It's a tradition."

"Lawns were invented as a way for the landed gentry to demonstrate that they could afford to waste land. By taking the land away from the grazing sheep, they were sending a message to their neighbors. We're rich, we can happily waste the opportunity to make a few bucks from our front lawn."  - Seth Godin

So if our front lawns are a tradition, what else do we do that is a tradition? But we have labeled it a necessity. Or maybe we even labeled it spiritual. 

You don't have anything like that in your life - or do you?

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

The Stuff Christians Like Guest Post-a-thon

I'm back with a post a day earlier than planned because a few weeks ago, I signed up to be a guest at a party to discuss American Idol with Stuff Christians Like and today's the day for that. 

If you've come here via Stuff Christians Like - welcome!
If you haven't heard about the blog called Stuff Christians Like - you've been missing a great source of laughter. Here's some info about it ...

The site is written by Jonathan Acuff, a preacher’s kid/copywriter who lives in Atlanta with his wife and two kids. Started on March 21, 2008 as a reaction to the wildly popular blog Stuff White People Like which was created by Christian Lander, Stuff Christians Like is a blog about the funny things we Christians do. And what they just might reveal about our faith. 

The blog has now birthed a book by the same name, which was released recently. When my Amazon order with the "Stuff Christians Like" book came recently, the cover attracted the attention of my seventeen year old. He confiscated the book for the next hour or two and could not stop laughing. 
And the next day, my two college sons discovered the book and were busting a gut (seriously bad pun - because the son without the shirt has a scar on his abdomen from seriously busting a gut this winter) 
About 130 bloggers signed up for this massive Guest Post-a-thon today to answer this question: 

“Is that contestant on American Idol a Christian Scorecard”

Each of the bloggers received one line from the massive scorecard - here's the one I was sent:
5. The contestant is a missionary kid and his dad is in the audience with a machete and some sort of woven leather accoutrements = + 2 points  

To add up your score with over a 130 other ideas on this scorecard, visit