About Me

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My passion is helping others defend themselves and their families. I am an NRA Certified pistol instructor, a NRA Chief Range Safety Officer, leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - North Cincinnati, and the state leader of TWAW Shooting Chapters - Ohio. I also have a heart for the Lakota people and lead mission teams to the Pine Ridge Reservation each year, am founder and director of Backpacks For Pine Ridge,, and do various volunteer work in my own community. My greatest joy is being a grandma and hanging out with my husband of 30+ years.

Friday, February 29, 2008

From the Pacific Northwest

I'm sitting in a hotel room in Portland waiting for my flight home and thought I would blog! We flew out Wednesday to celebrate my father-in-law's 80th birthday and will be back home late tonight (Friday). It has been an eventful trip - yesterday I received a call from my youngest son telling me that my dad had passed out twice and was taken by 911 to the hospital where they admitted him.

I hate being so far away from home when something like that happens. I had been sort of bracing myself for bad news since my dad's bone scan showed "something" in his hip. He had an MRI Wednesday and was supposed to get the results today. It didn't sound good - like maybe the cancer had spread to the bones. I was not prepared to hear that he was taken to the hospital. Its a helpless feeling being that far away when something like this comes up.

This morning though - good news. The best oncologist in the Cincy area was in to see him and she looked up his MRI results and let him know that the "something" that showed up was a fracture, not cancer! We still do not know what's going on with the passing out. Maybe something heart related. I'm grateful though that he was at the hopsital where he could see this doc and get a second opinion on when to start chemo. God sometimes works in mysterious ways.

Our trip here has been good. The weather beautiful and it has been fun getting reaquainted with a couple of nephews. I wish we lived closer ...I would love hanging out with my two sister-in-laws ... and my kids and my sister-in-law's kids do not really know each other and I'm sure they would get along great. Its a bit uncanny to see how much they have in common - they are either ministers, artists, firefighters, police, or military.

Well, I think someone is waiting for the one computer in the hotel so I'm out of here.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

In Memory

In the early 90's I was able to go to Romania and help to work alongside Peter Dugusescu. He had a dream of rebuilding Romania and had a special place in his heart for the many street children left behind by the cruel communist regime. Our job was to refurbish an old building so that it could be used to house and feed the homeless children on Timesora.

Peter was an amazing man. Working with him was an honor and a blessing. Its the only time I've ever been "star struck". Peter's story can be read about in Chuck Colson's book "The Body". I just received word this morning that Peter went to be with the Lord in January. I am happy for him but sad to hear of his passing. Romania lost a great man.

I will always remember his tremendous "presence" when he was in the room and feeling like I was working with someone like one of the apostles. I will remember his stories of persecution under the communist government. And I will remember his key role in Romania's revolution and how he went from being a pastor of an underground church to being a member of Romania's Parliament. Below is a video I made some time back. I chose the song because it reminds me of Peter. The pictures are not good. They are old and grainy but even that lends itself to the feeling of Romania back then. It seemed everything was gray and gritty. I hope they are doing far better these days. Peter is the roundish man with a head full of dark curly hair. And I look forward to seeing Peter again one day.

Read about his passing here as well as about the home we worked on for the street children.

Friday, February 22, 2008

New Web Site!

I'm thrilled to announce that we finally have a real web site for Backpacks For Pine Ridge!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Heaven Couldn't Be Any Better

I'm back from a wonderful, relaxing time at Logan, OH in the Hocking Hills. This is a picture of the cabin I stayed in which was far nicer than anyone deserves. Just imagine it covered with snow. I ended up staying a day longer because I was snowed in. There is a very steep hill going up to the cabin that was ice and snow covered ... and no snow removal. Such terrible luck to be forced to extend my stay ;)

I went alone - just me, the hot tub, a fireplace, a good book and good music that feeds the soul - Brian's gift to me. Gotta love a man who is that caring and understanding.


It was a good time to think about myself. I normally don't think about myself too often since its a rather depressing subject, but sometimes its good to get away and ask yourself the hard questions and think about facing some issues that have nagged you. Things that normally get shoved aside with the distractions of being busy. That wasn't the purpose of going away. My only real purpose was to relax and forget about the pressures I'm dealing with for a while. But its funny how spending time with yourself with no distractions can bring up things too long ignored.


Now its back home ... back to the grindstone. I came home to 76 emails and a stack of paperwork. I'll dig out of it eventually.
For now I'm enjoying every kiss from my husband. :)

Taser on the other hand, barely noticed I was gone. Stupid dog.












Sunday, February 10, 2008

Gone for a few Days

I'm outta here for a while. No phone. No internet access. Lots of quiet. Some good books. Oh, and of course some good music.

See ya later.

Thursday, February 07, 2008

Beautiful Day?

I'm stuck. For the past three months I have done my best to find sponsors for the Rezonate '08 benefit concert for Backpacks for Pine Ridge and I have nothing to show for my efforts. We have one sponsor. Just one. And that was for the lowest level of sponsorship, and I didn't get that sponsor.

So.

I'm beginning to wonder if this thing is really supposed to happen.

It makes no sense. Things fell together in amazing ways. We have so many talented people willing to give of their time and talent to make this concert happen. We have a great team of people who are working their butts off to make it happen. I am continueally amazed and humbled by the fact that so many people are so excited about this idea that they would willingly go out of their way and give their time to this event that began as just a wild idea.

I thought it was a God-thing. I know its a good thing. But whether its a God-thing ... I'm not sure anymore.

I'm feeling that I may have completely missed the boat on this one. Maybe I just got too excited about my own idea and thought God planted that idea and thought He was involved when really I was just excited about the possibility this event would hold.

Its been a ride. I've seen life come back into someone who had long since given up. I've seen people from different backgrounds come together. It has been amazing. And if this falls through I will feel very bad for the folks who have given so much to this effort. I will feel bad for getting them involved in a wild goose chase. And I know I shouldn't, but I will feel responsible for letting them down.

I'm not throwing in the towel yet. It may still happen. God has this irritating way of coming through at the last second. But right now we simply do not have the money to rent equipment. Crazy that it all comes down to port-a-potties and trash recepticals. Trash and crap may be the thing that does us in. Well, that's not entirely accurate - there is a lot of equipment we need to rent to pull this off.

So.


I'm fasting and praying. Not in a futile effort to get God's attention or to get Him in a headlock and make Him act (as if that were possible), but to try to allow Him to get my attention. I need some direction here. I would like to have it now but if I know God, He will not answer me. Not yet anyway. For some annoying reason He likes to make me walk blindfolded through mine fields. I think I know the reason but I still don't like it.



The heart is a bloom
Shoots up through the stony ground
There's no room
No space to rent in this town

You're out of luck
And the reason that you had to care
The traffic is stuck
And you're not moving anywhere

You thought you'd found a friend
To take you out of this place
Someone you could lend a hand
In return for grace

It's a beautiful day
Sky falls, you feel like
It's a beautiful day
Don't let it get away

You're on the road
But you've got no destination
You're in the mud
In the maze of her imagination

You love this town
Even if that doesn't ring true
You've been all over
And it's been all over you

It's a beautiful day
Don't let it get away
It's a beautiful day

Touch me
Take me to that other place
Teach me
I know I'm not a hopeless case

See the world in green and blue
See China right in front of you
See the canyons broken by cloud
See the tuna fleets clearing the sea out
See the Bedouin fires at night
See the oil fields at first light
And see the bird with a leaf in her mouth
After the flood all the colors came out

It was a beautiful day
Don't let it get away
Beautiful day

Touch me
Take me to that other place
Reach me
I know I'm not a hopeless case

What you don't have you don't need it now
What you don't know you can feel it somehow
What you don't have you don't need it now
Don't need it now
Was a beautiful day