Wednesday, October 29, 2008

The Wild Plum

While in Gatlinburg, we went to the Wild Plum Tearoom for lunch. This lovely place is happily situated on the Arts and Crafts trail with a (currently) dry creek bed running next to, and beneath, it. It is a log cabin tea room.

Aaaaah, that's my style: logs, lace, and tea cups! Makes me look forward to the day when we get our log home built and I get to decorate it in much the same fashion.

We had a relaxing lunch while there. It was so good, in fact, that I bought the tea room's cook book before we left. Simple ingredients made into luscious fare:

Monday, October 20, 2008

Photos from Gatlinburg

We're finally getting back into the swing of things (and Jim Bob had a little free time from editing the magazine to help me), so I thought I should post some pictures from our anniversary trip to Gatlinburg.

Something that really struck us was the sheer amount of variety of activities to enjoy in the Gatlinburg/Pigeon Forge/Sevierville area. It was truly mind-bloggling beyond words… so, how about some pictures?

As you can imagine, it was tough to decide what to do. Can you guess what activity we chose from this myriad of options?

Still Hitched… After 14 Years of Wedded Bliss!

More real photos to come: beautiful fall color, shabby chic hunting, a delightful log cabin tea room, and some yard sale finds—yes, even on vacation! ;)

Monday, October 13, 2008

If You Have Acid Reflux Like I Have Acid Reflux...

…You will definitely appreciate this video I stumbled across yesterday:

And YES, I've tried all the diet, water, acid vs. alkaline, cleanse, exercise, sleep, de-stressing, whole-foods, over-the-counter, herbal, and homeopathic remedies you could possibly think of to make it better... trust me on this. I've had a horrible case of it for five years and it hasn't magically gone away as a result of any of these.

When I saw this video I laughed and wanted to cry too, because I felt like I had brothers and sisters out there who are from the same long-lost family. I knew they understood what I've been dealing with all this time. Even our lovely trip to Gatlinburg for our anniversary last week (the first trip we've had away together as a couple in seven years) wasn't immune to the onslaught of Reflux. I had an awful attack the second night.

The man in the third video that talks about "vurps" understands me completely, save for the fact that he forgot to mention the "surp." That is the infamous sulphur burp I get right before I have one of the bad attacks that keep me awake all night throwing up my toenails for hours on end. (Hope no one was eating when they read that!)

The worst attacks end up with me in the hospital, after hours of being sick, hooked up to an IV so that I can be rehydrated. With milder attacks I'm toast for a day or two afterward, and can hardly eat anything because my throat and chest are so sore (that is the type I had in Gatlinburg - it only kept me up two thirds of the night, and I threw up for only three and a half hours).

It is not my intention to gross either one of my readers out. ;) Rather, my intention here is to help you understand that this is a real disease that real people deal with on a very real daily basis. Sometimes we can do things to curb the attacks, other times we can't.

Go ahead, watch all of the videos on this site; it will enlighten you as to the very real struggle those of us with Reflux endure.

Thankfully, I have Jesus. He is in control of all things. And, because I am a believer, I can rest assured knowing that even in this, my "thorn in the flesh," as Paul put it so eloquently, will all work out to my good according to His purposes for me. This, this one most important of all things is what was missing from these videos. All they did was inform.

Apart from Christ there is no hope that all we endure in this world is for our own good and for His greater glory. Can I understand why He chose to allow me to suffer this? No, apart from knowing that I am a terrible sinner and only deserve death. In light of that, what's a little Reflux? In light of His mercy towards me, all I can do is be thankful that in suffering with Reflux, I understand a little better what it means to die to self (You know, by NEVER eating chocolate again for the rest of my life!).

If that brings me closer to Jesus, if that gives me a glimpse of how much He loves me, then it's all mercy, grace, and triumph. I have nothing to fear. It is mine, instead, to praise, to worship, to trust Him with all of my broken being. It is for Him to pick up the pieces and give me that perfect body I so long for, and one day will have, in Heaven.

What's your "thorn in the flesh?" How has it brought you closer to Him?

Love to you all,


P.S. Stay tuned… My next post will have LOTS of pics from Gatlinburg! It will be soon!