Gaelic camp ( taken from my memoirs )

Peter and I went to Gaelic camp in Donegal which is in the West of Ireland. It is very picturesque and very rugged on the coast of Ireland. Maddie and Russ sent us there to learn more Gaelic. It was a summer camp but I was too young to go, but because Peter my brother was there they made an exception for me. He was supposed to keep an eye on me. The kids at the camp were so much older than I was and I was bullied lots. The older girls made me do things I didn’t want to do but if I didn’t they threatened to beat me up. I already was a sacred nervous child so I just did what they wanted. I was pushed off a ledge outside into a bed of nettles and I was covered in welts. I had to sit with Calame lotion it made your skin white when you put it on. It felt better in the welts. I didn’t dare tell anyone what had really happened.

I did tell Peter but he was busy with the people he had met. He didnt have time for me and did not want me hanging around him. Besides that happening I loved being there and the girls stopped bugging me after the nettle incident. Maybe it was a test who knows. We were expected to speak Gaelic whenever we ate our meals. If you wanted someone to pass you something you had to speak it in Gaelic. I can remember asking for butter which is im. Ara’n is bread and Stobhach is stew.

Whenever we went in the local shops a lot of the locals still just speak Gaelic we had to speak the language. The locals would not speak to us in English that’s tough when your a small timid kid. Also hard when they told you the price in Gaelic so you would just give them money.

Donegal is known for its surfing, fishing, rock climbing and hiking. There are huge cliffs that are breathtaking. It’s nicknamed the forgotten county because of its isolation. The cliffs of Mohor are the largest sea cliffs in Europe. Donegal is the home to Star Wars it was filmed in Ireland. Also its famous for its tweed. Hand weaved.

First week of school

This week was my first week of school since the end of January this year. I’ve been out of school for 8 months. I was nervous about going back because I had not been in so long. I was put in the same school for 3 weeks which is nice. My job because I don’t have a permanent job is on call and that can mean a different school each day. Was not sure how that would work with Covid. I got put in a school right near my home. It’s also a school where I know a bunch of the students because where I worked before. A lot of them where in my preschool.

I had a busy job this week I was in two 4/5 split classes and then for 45 minutes a day I helped a child with autism. I got chosen to work with him because of my resume. It’s a child not just anyone works with him. I loved working with him so much and he’s such a happy child. I’d never worked with a child that had this much autism. Even though he was in his own world a lot, I quickly realized he heard what I asked him. One of my favorite times was after his lunch playtime his class read books. I read him a Dr. Susse book. It’s funny one day I started where I had left off the day before and he quickly put me back at the beginning. He’d sit and I’d read to him for 15 minutes. At first I was really nervous about working with him but he quickly responded to me and I Could tell he liked and trusted me.

The other children were really sad today that it was my last day. In a week I got to know them. A great group of children and I had an amazing teacher that made my days so much better. I loved how she made each child feel really special and how she included each of them. She told me that why I connected so easily with the children is because I have compassion from my heart and so I connect with each of them. I told her that’s how you teach. At the end of school today she told me how much she’d miss me and the children were all sad. I did tell them that in the Spring I will come back and do a baby bunny project with them. I hope on one of my Fridays I can go back and sub there.

As I’ve written before I love working with the children so much. I realized why I work as an EA. Everyone of those children are someone special and unique no matter who they are. God has given me huge compassion for them. The boy with autism I just treated him like everyone else. Next week I start a new job working as an Early childhood educator in a Kindergarten. Early intervention is key to helping children. That is my new role, I look forward to getting to know two classes. I will miss my big kids but looking forward to being with the young ones again.

I remember…..

This young girl wrote this book about dementia for a school project at a local school at 15. This is the same choir where my mom and dad attend. The choir is made up of young and old together singing. I read this book today and wow it’s very powerful. This young girl wrote from her experiences in the choir. She knew nothing about dementia before she came. Her book has touched many in our community and many can relate to what she wrote. She also illustrated the book as well. I’m definitely going to buy a copy.

Today I went back to hang out with my dad again today. My mom was getting her hair cut so I picked him up and took him back to his home. One of my favorite things to do now is to listen to his records. All the old stuff and things that just don’t sound the same on a cd. As I’ve written before music is incredible for people with dementia. One of the records we played today was called Classical Cats and it was such a fun record. The first time we listened to it my dad was like a kid he was so excited about and loved it so much. He even knew what some of the songs were.

We took a break and had lunch and after lunch he decided to go back to his music. Interestingly he decided to listen to Classical Cats and he was unsettled about it and it was not fun like last time but he found it loud and half way through took it off and put it away. Hard to believe he loved it an hour before. My favorite time is hanging out listening to music with him. Everytime he tells the same story to him it’s a new story and he’s super excited about it. As I wrote last time we go on what he’s thinking and feeling right at that moment.

This book is such a great resource and I’m looking forward to owning my own copy. For people out there who know people with dementia this is such a wonderful book.

Living in the moment

Last weekend I spent time again with my dad. As I’ve written before he has dementia and I go hang out with him while my mom gets a break. She’s also getting respite and time out to have fun. This time around I was way more laid back because I knew what to do and what to expect. Now my dad is never left alone because he wandered off and got lost and my mom was able to track him off his GPS he wears. It’s not like I have to do much he’s very capable he just needs a companion.

On Saturday morning we hung out together and he read the paper well one story about 10 times I heard about it and each time we discussed it and we are breakfast together and then we talked about church and he told me that that’s not for him but he loves to help others. I told him my church is a community church and that’s exactly what we do we help each other and others and need help. He liked the sound of that. He said that’s what church is about not any of that religious stuff. We then talked about the ranch that I love so much in Oregon and how it’s my second home. He told me he loves Oregon and if he had to leave his home he’d move there. When I shared about the story of how the ranch began he cried in fact cried so much he had to leave.

Eventually we each got dressed and I was coming out of my room and my dad was in the hallway and he said to me ” Good morning did you sleep well?” I became sad that he did not remember the wonderful conversations we had that morning and I realized that I need to make his time now the best for him. All he has is living in the moment.

God also saved both of us from getting run over on the crosswalk near his home. At the time he said wow that was scary. It was indeed my heart pounded a lot. By the time we got home he had no memory of what happened. I was thinking yup I’d like to have forgotten that as well. We shared some awesome moments this weekend. We were driving home from dinner and he told me that I had grown into a very special lady. He may not have given birth to me but he’s my dad in all ways and he loves me as his daughter. I will continue to go and stay and hang out as long as I can. He’s a very special man in my life. I get to help my mom for a couple hours this weekend so we get to hang out again.

One more awesome thing I want to share is he loves music so much. He’s got all his favorites on record and so we listen to his favorites often. He’s funny he told me he found the records when they moved to this house and couldn’t find their owners so he kept them. They were the best thing about his home. I just smile. He’s got a good ear and often will tell me it’s too much base or its tiney. Music is so good for people with dementia. Until next time dad 🎶🎧❤️

Growing up in Ireland

For those who don’t me I grew up in Ireland. I lived there for 12 years. Ireland is a very beautiful place to live in. The beauty that surrounds this country is breathtaking. I lived in the Southern part of Ireland. When I lived in Ireland it was a poorer country so I saw a lot of crime. I remember going into Dublin and my dad getting stressed because if you were gone long enough you could come back to your vehicle stipped down completely and sometimes set on fire. Dublin was full of pickpockets back then. Tinkers were homeless people who travelled around in caravans they just camped wherever. They stole and left garbage everywhere they went.

These stone walls are everywhere in Ireland they are just stones stacked to make walls. Throughout the Countryside there are lots of old ruins of castles. Some you can go in some just shells of the ruins. The Countryside of Ireland is so beautiful. Thatched cottages and different coloured homes in each County.

Cathedrals are a huge part of Ireland and they are so beautiful inside. I always loved the unique strained glass windows.

Catholics and Protestants were the religion. I always said I was nothing or you’d be beat up by the kids. I went to a private school near Dublin and there was a Catholic school right beside us. The kids there were taught by nuns and they would wait for us and throw rocks at us and call us names. No religion was safer.

Donegal is so beautiful and my brother and I went to a Garlic camp where we went to improve our Gaelic. Today the people some still only speak Gaelic. I did learn a lot and it was a subject we had to take in school. Donegal is in the West of Ireland.

Dublin is the capital of Ireland and now its a huge tourist attraction. There are many sites to see. I remember as a kid Pope John Paul Coming to St. Stephens Green in Dublin. As kids we had no idea what he was saying as he spoke in Latin. I can remember running through people’s legs as they listened to what he said.

This is part of what I’m writing in my memoirs. I’ve not written it yet. I found these awesome photos off the internet. They are not mine. I would love to go back to Ireland one day a lot of my school friends live there still. One of good friends lives there with her husband. There was not much exploration as a kid. I will go back and sightsee. I’ve not been back since 1988 it will have changed a lot. I have 3 siblings who live there as well. God sure has changed my heart as I never wanted to go back. I look forward to that day. 🙂

It’s now time……

I love when you least expect it God tells you now it’s time. He told me it’s time to begin writing my memoirs again. I’ve not written in it or on it for a long time. Now I’m in a totally different mindset. My goal is to write something every day. I printed out the pages and have been editing it and adding more information.

For a long time I wanted to publish this book but my motivation was all wrong. I wanted the book to punish the people who had hurt me. Now I want to write about my life and my healing journey along the way. This book is my journey with the Lord. This story is raw because you can’t pretty it up. I’ve written from the heart but what I love about it is the healing I’ve had Along the way. I want it to encourage others and give them hope that no matter what you have endured in your life there is freedom.

If I’m quiet on here it’s probably because I’m writing. I still want to blog while I write because blogging is a big part of my life. Recently I just celebrated 3 years of sobriety from addiction. Wow I never thought I’d ever be able to write this. It’s from having a God who always forgave me when I stumbled. It’s also from having an amazing support team. For that I’m entirely grateful. I still have support in place and will probably for the rest of my life. Accountability is huge in my life and is what helps me stay in Freedom everyday.

I may put in excerpts into my blog from my book I’ve not decided yet but I think it would be good for my readers to know what the book is about. Let me know if you would like that. I’m also asking for prayer as it’s not an easy book to write. It’s been hard already. Thanks I appreciate all your support in reading my blogs so far.

Shame and unworthiness

Wow today is such a different day than 3 years ago. For a long time I felt such shame and unworthiness in my life. It seemed to creep into my life often sometimes with no warning. To stop that feeling I would use addiction as a way to numb out the feelings. Today I don’t feel that and I know I am so worthy in God’s eyes.

Jesus touched those who were unclean those who often carried shame. He let the prostute wash His feet with oil. I love that story so much. He healed the lepers and told the blind man to walk. Jesus loved everyone even the people who felt unlovable.

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be frightened, and do not be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.” Ephesians 2:10.

Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. 1 Peter 2:9.

Our God is a God of love and compassion by speaking out when you feel unworthy or Shameful. God shines His Light on it and for me reading God’s truth reminded me everyday that I AM SO WORTHY. One of the things I still do often is listen to worship music and pray. I no longer feel that feeling. Do you struggle with shame and unworthiness? Reach out to God read His word and find the truth. God’s truth sets us free. Ask God for a covering of Grace.

Recently a gal I know was feeling these feelings and was having a tough time. I asked her to write down 10 things she was thankful for. She was able to see God’s promises and those feelings disappeared. I still write in my journal my gratuities and it changes how you feel. I challenge you today to write down 10 things that your so grateful for………

3 years of sobriety

Tomorrow August 8th is my third year anniversary from addiction. This was the last day that I acted out. I had no idea that I would not do it again. For me this addiction is one of the harder ones to stop. It’s an addiction where you can hide it in the darkness. Before I was able to be free of it, I felt like I was in a prison and trapped forever. Every time I felt rejected it reared its ugly head. I often felt huge shame and unworthiness with it. That would spiral me further into addiction.

I’ve writtten it before that the key to my freedom was forgiveness. One day brushing my teeth God told me that my freedom was in forgiveness. My heart was black from hate and the more I hated the worse I became trapped in addiction. I did not know how to forgive two people in my life that I felt destroyed me. How do you forgive people that beat me and starved me for no reason and treated their animals better than me. I hated these two. I wanted them to pay for what I had endured.

The problem with that is everytime I fell in addiction they continued to have power over my life. It’s hard to be A Christian with hate in your heart. Now I think that God forgave each of us seventy times seven. No matter what we have done in our lives He forgives us. When your in that hate you don’t see Anything else. Three years ago I had an opportunity to go to Oregon and got to walk in the wilderness with my good friend Kim. I Remember that day like it was yesterday. It was winter time usually Bend is covered in snow but this day the sun beat down on both of us. The wilderness was dusty and Kim brought her dogs. One was a puppy and she ran in front of us playing with the other dog. I had a hard breathing because Bend is so high and I live at sea level so after I got a massive headache we stopped and knelt down in the Sage bushes to pray.

Kim asked me where I was. I said I was in a room and I was alone curled up in a ball. I was crying and calling out to God because I was scared. Kim said who is in the room with you. I said it was dark nobody but me. She told me to look harder. Then Behind me I saw a Shadow and a light and I saw Jesus Kneeling beside me stroking my hair. I cried because I realized that God had been with me in my childhood when I felt so lonely. I always was angry at God for not being there.

In that moment I knew I was never ever alone and that God had been there. I forgave my dad and stepmom for all they had done to me and wow I cried so much. After the prayer I realized I was still kneeling in the dust but a huge burden had been lifted from my heart. I no longer had problems breathing and my headache was gone. Instead I walked really straight and felt amazing. To this day I occasionally pray for them when God leads. That was the last day of my addiction. I now live in in the Light.

I would never have imagined that I could break free but I was able to and my chains were broken. Addiction is very crippling in our lives and sometimes we feel like we will never live in Freedom. There is help and hope and I pray that this will bring you one step closer to your freedom.

God was with us both yesterday….

My good friend and I spent part of the day on this incredible beach yesterday. We had such a lovely time and brought our lunch and just hung. It was an incredible day. We decided to explore around our area and see what we could find. In our way home we were driving and I was behind a tractor trailer rig but no trailer and they were a student driver so we driving behind them and there car behind us. We were in no hurry. All of a sudden my friend gasped and I’m not sure why because we were just driving. All of a sudden to my left I notice a vehicle coming straight for us. My instincts kicked in and I swerved to the shoulder on the right. I honked my horn hard and stepped on the gas and the guy just missed us. Not sure where he was going but there also was a car behind me. He apparently came out from a side street. Our hearts about exploded in our chests. I pulled over and we just sat there in shock.

We got back on the road still in awe about what just happened. I thanked God for saving us from getting in an accident. My friend agreed that yes indeed we had been saved. We get home and we’ve been home for a few hours and I’m changing things around in my home and after we moved a table into my studio I smell burning. My friend said it’s from moving the wires. I’m not convinced that’s it. I continue to smell a burning smell.

As I start making dinner my friend is outside and tells me to come outside she wanted to show me something. I walked outside and notice smoke coming out of my herb garden. We realize this sphere is in the garden and obviously the sun hit it a certain way and it was smoking from a fire. We pulled it off the rail of the deck brought it downstairs and my friend lifted it out with oven mitts and drenched it with water. The whole soil was burnt so it was like a bog fire in my planter.

So many things running through my head with this. Glad we were home and it could have burned through the rail and so many could haves. The other weird thing was that sphere had been in that same garden for about 8 years and yesterday it decided to burn. The bottom of that was really burnt. Again I’m praising God that we caught it before it caught my home on fire. After that we removed all glass from my balcony.

God was looking out for both of us yesterday. I’m so eternally grateful Lord. Thank you. I believe angels were watching out over us both yesterday.

Great joy in my heart

My heart feels like this orchid. I got this orchid and about a week after I got it, it had a tragic accident a fluke one. I was so upset all the flowers fell off except one. My big blinds in my living room fell off and crushed it. I decided I wanted another one and brought myself one on Mother’s day. I put it in one of my windows and just watered it and gave it some orchid fertilizer. Soon I noticed it was growing shoots and then buds appeared. It has regrown almost double the buds it originally had. Last night I realized it’s got three sets of flowers on it wow.

Why I’m saying I’m like this orchid is because for about 6 months or more my heart was so sad from grief and one day I decided to change myself actually about two days before my birthday. I decided to better myself and now I feel this huge joy in my heart each day. I have blossomed just like my orchid. My heart is full of joy. I’m not sure I’ve felt like this ever. Not only physically I feel good I’ve lost 15lbs and yes I feel lighter. My Confidence has soared and my relationship with the Lord has been the best it’s ever been. I’ve also had the toughest year.

During this tough season I relied solely on the Lord. I love spending time with him. He’s my best part of my life. God is using me to help others who have lost hope or feel like maybe there is nothing changing in their lives. My home finally is the way I want it to be. I love all the people God has put into my life and I’m so thankful for each of you.

I’m sorry if your hurting in your lives right now. There is hope and He is there waiting for you. Reach out to Him today. If you let me know in the comments below I can pray for you. 🙏❤️