Forever Changed Lives

September 6, 2017 at 7:30 pm (blogging, Creative Non- Fiction, Memoir, Middle age, positive thinking, Survivor) (, , , )



Lives have been turned upside down, side ways, tumbled, and families are waiting for relief.  From the storms that rage on from Irma and now Jose,the fires raging in the Northwest,to continuing hot,dry conditions.  My home is surrounded by the heavy, nasty smoke in the northwest. I gave up watering my yard,but decided to have mercy on my Hydrangea and cut them back.  We have not had any measurable rainfall since June.

The fires raging out of control in Oregon was deliberately set. I still cannot believe someone can set a fire in a beautiful forest enjoyed by so many FOR FUN. I heard on the news campers are still not following the no camp fire bans and some have resorted to setting around a propane camp fire. Campers are brave souls because when animals get scared, they are more dangerous. I don’t know about you,but  hearing a moose cry outside my camper would be an eerie sound, a bear trying to come inside where it is maybe safer,( he expects a hearty breakfast in the morning). Next Month is the start of hunting season, the game may figure it better to migrate this year to a safer location. (Forget the natural GPS,) It has been a crazy whether this summer soon becoming Fall.

Maybe this is the reason so many homeowners are deciding to stay home and turn the home into a family resort. Backyard grilling station, a nice pool, fire pit, covered patio. I think it a wonderful idea you don’t have to fight the kids to pack, no packing the car, if you forget something, just head back inside-you can now afford the better cuts of meat for your camp out. Oh, burgers and dogs are fine,but sometimes you want to resort live. My favorite summertime commercial showed a mom and daughter in their swim suits, getting ready to sit by backyard pool; later, dad grill dinner, after kids have gone to bed, parents enjoying a glass of wine by the outside fireplace. Anyone can add a vacation feel to your home. After roasting hot dogs over the BBQ, pitch the kids tent in the backyard, (let them listen to the cricket’s chirp over the freeway noise) In the morning,make a pancake station and let everyone add the toppings. Sure to be a big hit.

Families will soon get back to the new normal. Many live in areas that flood every year, tornadoes are common, fires rage on, and choose to rebuild. Many have said they can’t imagine living anywhere else. I pray for hope, peace, getting the fires under control, and Irma and her devastating aftermath. Sometimes you wonder how you can go through so much and keep going strong. Some have lost everything…again…. there is a spirit in these individuals that keep going and fighting. As a Great Nation we still are, e come together, letting go of the fighting, riots, and hate instead showing what we are really made of. We are a melting pot of many ethnic backgrounds,  family values,  traditions, started families, live in small communities, provide for their families,looking forward to the next generation. We live in very uncertain times,we do not know what is around the next corner. Hug your kids extra tight tonight,tell them how much you love them,how proud you are of them and you are glad they are in your live. Nobody is promised tomorrow, make the most out of today.


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Happiness Like Bitterness Is A Choice

May 2, 2016 at 3:25 am (Creative Non- Fiction, Life beyond parenting, Memoir, Middle age, positive thinking) (, , , , )

happiness wordle


Happiness like bitterness is our choice. it is easy to be happy when life is going our way, but how do we handle life’s disappointments? Do we put all our energies into sulking or do we move forward in the pain?

Life did not come with an instruction manual as we all know or of it did many would throw them out anyway. Some days we can’t wait until the day is over and we can start afresh tomorrow. Funny how unfinished business will still be there. It is hard to be happy all the time, days seem frustrating, babysitter quit 20 minutes before your next shift(been there?) The car decides to break down before payday. It is easy to blow your top. But that won’t fix the problem either even if it might make you feel better.

I try to find one thing every morning to be thankful for. I try to smile to at least five people everyday. I love to hear the birds chirping in the morning. My life changed with the deaths of both my husband and my son. People ask me how I can stay so positive. I have my good days and ones I cry. I remember both my husband and my son are cheering me on and on in Heaven. I know they are proud of me. Life has been an adjustment but I keep moving forward in the good things God still has for me.

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Strength In A Crisis

March 26, 2015 at 6:16 pm (Creative Non- Fiction, Memoir, Single Parent) (, , , )

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Dad retired from the school district when I was in high school. He had cancer. I took my dad to doctors, while mom worked. (Yeah dad was walking with a walker; he couldn’t hardly walk, let’s put him on some heavy equipment. Doctors didn’t believe he was disabled.)
I was a junior in high School; dad got me a job at the school district. I took dad to the doctor’s office before I took my test for the job. The nurse forgot that dad had been allergic to rubbing alcohol, the nurse forgot about the allergy and gave him the shot. Dad got dizzy, hit the door cutting his head and passed out. The head nurse and I took dad in a gurney across the street to the E.R. room to be checked.
I went to take my test. The nurse drove me to the appointment. (I still had to take the test even with all that just happened.) The nurse said if I didn’t do very well on the test, she would ask if I could take it again because of what happened.
I took the test, and out of 75 people there, I had the top 11th score. I got the job.

Excerpt from Healing in the Storms

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Surviving Those Teenage years

February 20, 2015 at 4:49 am (Creative Non- Fiction, Life beyond parenting, Memoir, Single Parent, Sons, Survivor, Uncategorized) (, , , )

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The teenage years;

My how time flies by fast. One day our they are sweet as pie, then overnight it seems to happen. ‘The great Advanced tween attitude.’ Over night parents become stupid and let the arguments begin.

When my son turned 19, he moved in with his grandma to help her when his grandpa died.Levi told his grandma”I’ll take care of you.” I laugh at the thought.My son learned money management when you gave it grandma to keep,she did. You had to have a good reason to have the money back( Levi kept giving her his money and argued when he could not have it back)Oh growing up is hard to do! Grandma meant what she said” the door locks at 10:00.” Levi would call his grandma at 9:59 and tell her he was on his way,or better yet, his friends would call her to let her know Levi was on his way home and Please don’t lock the door. Grandma kept him honest.

My son laid my carpet in my house. It was an honor to have him lay it, plus it was a treat to have new carpet. I turned his old bedroom into my dressing room. I love to get dressed in the morning and put my pajamas on at night. I did not want a “mom cave.” I re-purposed Levi’s book shelve that his grandpa and him painted when he was seven years old. Now the old book shelf has been repainted a soft beige complete with my author friends books. Life has not been the same since Levi had moved out. In July 2007, he was involved in a fatal traffic accident. he was only 20. Even though he developed the advanced tween attitude, I still treasure those times no matter how difficult it was. i miss the fine young man he had become. We never know what tomorrow may bring or we even have tomorrow. I would not wish the pain I feel on anyone, but through the pain, I have learned the grace,strength,and comfort of God has brought me where I am today.

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My Twin Brother

February 6, 2015 at 5:48 pm (Creative Non- Fiction, Memoir, Twins, Uncategorized) (, , , )

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I am glad to have you as my brother.

I always had someone to talk to .

Someone to share my troubles with.

We did our daily chores together,

and enjoyed taking long horseback rides.

We taught our lamb how to walk on a leash.

We ran our lambs for the dreaded mile around the driveway getting ready for the fair.

We shared the same friends.

We even dated each other’s friends.

It was fun growing up with you.

We had a lot of good times, and even in the hardships in growing up,  we both persevered.

God could’t have given me a better friend, and a brother than you.

I am glad that I am your sister.

I love you Jeff.

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What If My Life Had Never Changed

January 25, 2015 at 9:30 pm (Single Parent, Sons, Survivor, Uncategorized) (, , )






I am reminded how precious life is.


We never know what our future holds. When my husband and I married, we thought we would grow old together, raise a family in our new house, and imagined a life as proud grandparents of our son Levi’s children. We often talked about traveling when we retired, (sneaking the grandkids along) for camping trips and fishing. My life had taken a different direction.

My husband died just 6 short years after we married. I was left to raise our young son alone. With God’s guidance, I raised Levi from childhood through his teens. I am proud of the fine young man he had become. My life was forever changed again, when my son set off with some friends one sunny Sunday morning July 2007. By that evening Levi died in a tragic car accident. He was only 20. There are no words to encompass the depth I felt that day.

I often ponder where I would be today if my life never changed. Would Jerry still have complications from his disease? Would he be fulfilling his dreams? Would we now be retired and traveling? Would Levi have married? Have kids? Be living in the area? Own a business? Would we be the proud grandparents to Levi’s children?

Levi was our miracle baby. Because of my husband’s disease, doctors told us we could not have children. We had a ten per cent chance to conceive. God had other plans for our life. Levi is the most precious gift God ever given to me. I have so many treasured memories in my life as a wife and mother. I had many hardships being married to a diabetic. Some of the memories are painful; the ambulance calls for complications from Jerry’s disease, Levi and the croup, still the good times outweigh the bad. I can’t imagine my life without Jerry and Levi ever being a part of it. (I have had many lemons handed me in life, I just make more lemonade to share and encourage others who are who are hurting). I could not have imagined my life would be forever changed in a moment. I could have been angry and bitter with God, I chose instead to trust Him. As I continue to heal and write, I am remembering long forgotten memories of a life when my husband and I had ahead of us.

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A Man Of His Word

January 18, 2015 at 9:32 pm (Creative Non- Fiction, Middle age, Single Parent, Survivor, Uncategorized) (, , , )




I taught my son Levi to be a man of his word.


When my son was six years old he learned a valuable lesson.Levi was  invited  to go fishing with his grandpa. Levi’s friend also invited him to go to McDonald’s with him. Caught in a dilemma, Levi chose instead to go to lunch with his friend. I told him his choice would hurt his grandpa’s feelings,don’t go back on your word with your grandpa. They brought their catch home and enjoyed a fabulous fish dinner. The next afternoon, Levi and his friend went to McDonald’s for lunch. Sometimes it is hard to encourage your child to make the right decisions. I told him being a man of your word is a very respected virtue.

I became a single parent when my husband, Levi’s father died from complications from his diabetes.  I was given the tremendous responsibility to raise my young son alone. I became mother, father and sole provider for my family of two now. Single parenthood presented many challenges and difficulties. Levi and I survived them all I raised Levi from childhood through his tween years. I am proud of the fine young man Levi had become. In July 2007, Levi was killed in a tragic car accident. He was only 20. My faith in God brought me through difficult times in parenting. I am blessed because I was given tremendous responsibility of raising my son like so many single parents. Life is good, no matter the circumstance.


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A Different Day

December 27, 2014 at 9:59 pm (Creative Non- Fiction, Uncategorized) (, , , )

Levi Degon0035

28 years ago today the best gift God could have ever given to me was born. He was the joy in my late husbands and my life. In July 2007, Levi set out with some friends to float the river, by that evening, both our lives were forever changed. Levi died in a tragic car accident. he was only 20. In honor of his birthday today, I would like to include a story about a sons love to his mom in heaven.


I as sorting through some of Levis belongings a couple of months after he died. I found a cd labeled Levis pictures. When I looked at the pictures, i was stunned to find my son and his friend took 25 black and whites photos of him just three months earlier. I was just praying that morning I wished I had some recent pictures.

I know my son is smiling down from heaven watching over me. I miss his sayings “be safe mom” whenever I would leave. I miss his sparkle in his eyes, his infectious laugh, his mischievous smile. Sometimes our lives take another direction that we envisioned.I know Levi is heaven cheering me on and on.





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Visiting Hours In Heaven….

December 13, 2014 at 3:19 am (Creative Non- Fiction, Uncategorized) (, , )

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If there were visiting

hours in heaven, my son Levi would have to find his mother a good hiding place, because I would never want to leave. Joking.. There are so many parents that wish they could spend the day with their dearly departed but know they can not. Some people has asked me if I could make one last meal for my son Levi what would I prepare?  It is a fair question to one who has not yet suffered the loss of a child. The pain lessens as time goes on,but it never really eases.

I do not entertain the thoughts of heaven. I know I will see Levi again soon and that is enough for me. god covers me in His encouraging word daily, His grace, His healing balm in my heart, and His assurance Levi is doing just fine.  God intended us to live in the present even though it is difficult  to keep moving forward some days.

I would like to share my view-point. I know sometimes there are situations you may not know what to say, there are some parents never get over a cross comment said in innocence. I had my share of comments after my son Levi’s death in July 2007. I have a strong faith that carried me through some of the tough questions and comments made. they hurt, but I got over them,others do not. Just think how you would feel if it were said to you about your loved one.

Lives can be forever changed in a moment. take the time to hug you children extra tight tonight, Have a nice sit down meal together, share what happened in your days. Let them know how proud you are of them and how glad you are they are in your lives. For one day soon…..

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Friends That Stick With You.

November 7, 2014 at 10:30 pm (Creative Non- Fiction, Middle age, Uncategorized) (, , , )



I am thankful for all my family and friends.

I could not have persevered the last several years without them. There have been many times I have cried on your shoulders, you listened and brought me comfort. We have shared many stories about both my husband and son over a cup of coffee. With the love and support of family and friends I am able to keep moving forward in the good things God still has for me.

I have lost both my husband and son, I am healing more everyday. I have fond memories of when my house was alive with laughter,lively conversations, we watched our children  as they played car chases in the living room. My life has changed. yes, the house is quieter now, and I am healing more everyday. There is so much to be thankful for,a warm house, food to eat, mom, a good job, and someone to have Starbucks’s with now and then.

I could have become bitter and angry, but why, I have so much life left to live, books to write,stories to tell,and reflecting on my life as a young wife and mother. I have lived a blessed life, I really have. Sometimes life throws you a curve ball, it is up to you to decide what you are going to do with it and ducking does not count. I think it is part of living with the attitude of gratitude, we do not know what tomorrow may bring, maybe bad news, maybe something you needed for that day. I have realized over the years, it sure could have been so much worse. Have a great weekend everyone. Thank you so much for all your continued support.

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