Wednesday, November 25, 2015


Sunrise, November 18, 2015

A Time to Think

A grateful heart is one that finds 
the countless blessings of God 
in the seemingly mundane everyday life. 

A Time to Act

Thank the Lord for the possibilities of a new day.

 Portion in blue from an email devotional from Guideposts

"Just tell me if you need to stop."

My Farmer said the words as we were driving toward the cattle lots to round up cattle before the veterinarian arrived. We had just left home, so his solicitous remarks weren't aimed at an emergency bathroom break or the need to stop to stretch my legs during a long journey.

He looked at the eastern sky. He looked at me. And he knew that the beauty stretched across the horizon would have me itching to push the camera's shutter button.

I waited a beat. And I said, "Yes, I think I do need to stop."

So, less than a half mile from home, he pulled over so that I could capture a moment ... even though we had things to do and places to be.

I am blessed.

It was the second day of running cows through the working chute for pregnancy checks and vaccination updates.
On that day, the lot was sloppy with mud and manure after a total of 0.95" of rain had fallen. It may not have been ideal on tennis shoes, but it was great for a thirsty wheat crop. 
It was a chillier day than the first go-round, and the wind cut through layers of t-shirts, sweatshirts and gloves. But the cold temperatures made the cattle's breath look like mini rainbows through the camera lens. 
 As we ushered the cattle down the lane and into the chute, a chorus of geese sang a serenade.
Pelicans kept circling overhead, bucking the chilly breeze and coming back around as they left from their overnight stay at Quivira National Wildlife Refuge just down the road and searched for leftovers in nearby corn and milo stubble.

We didn't have any cattle jump a fence. The majority of the mama cows were pregnant. No humans or animals were hurt. We got the "ladies" where they needed to be.
It was a good day all around.
And it ended just like it began. This time, I was pointing the camera to the west, capturing another expansive Kansas sky.
There's a theme in the devotional reading material by my recliner these days. I've pulled out Ann Voskamp's "One Thousand Gifts," a book I've read and re-read three times. (I've shared quotes from that book here several times before - here and here among them.)

I borrowed "The Gratitude Diaries" by Janice Kaplan from the library, and I'm about halfway through it. The subtitle is "How A Year Looking on the Bright Side Can Transform Your Life." And, earlier this year, I ordered the book, "Help, Thanks, Wow: The Three Essential Prayers" by Anne Lamott. I have several little green Post-It tabs stuck in the margins of that book, too.
"The notion of gratitude cuts across all generations, ethnicities and social or economic boundaries. Gratitude is universal, and it's the one thing that can pull us together."
 Doug Conant, Former CEO of Campbell's Soup Co.
Interviewed by Janice Kaplan 
Sunset, November 18, 2015
Do I practice gratefulness always? I admit that I struggle some days more than others. But, on this eve of Thanksgiving and as we approach another Advent season, it is a worthy goal, don't you think?

Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours! May we all be thankful.

A Time to Pray

O Great Creator, may I see Your hand today
in something ordinary and amazing.


  1. It is a goal of mine to try to be more grateful, and some days I succeed, and others it is more of challenge. Have a blessed Thanksgiving!

    1. I do think trying counts in this case! I hope you have a wonderful holiday with your family!

  2. I think your man is a keeper! What a gem to read your mind and stop when there is so much to do in the day ahead.

    1. He is, indeed, a keeper! Must be why I've kept him around for going on 35 years!

  3. Happy Thanksgiving Kim and Randy!

    I love that Randy understands your need to take pictures of your surroundings. Sounds like he is taking time to enjoy the beauty too. I have to laugh as I observe my Dad taking time to let Mom take pictures too.

    I added your book suggestions to my Amazon wish list. I've read Ann Voskamp's book twice. The last faith based book I read was Simply Tuesday by Emily P Freeman.

    I always enjoy your life insights and wisdom.

    1. Thanks, Robyn! Thank you, too, for the beautiful Thanksgiving card. It was great to get "fun" mail. We are getting sleet and ice for the Thanksgiving weekend. So far, the electricity has stayed on, which is a definite Thanksgiving!

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