Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Wiggle Like a Fish ... Music for Kids!
You're Invited - :)
8th Annual Chalk Art Festival
Saturday... June 9th 2007
8:00 am to 2:00 pm
Uptown Shopping Center
Richland, WA
Live performance by - Tory Christensen
Come hear songs from his soon to be released CD -
"Wiggle Like a Fish"
(Fish illustration by my sister, Jennie Stanfield)

Draw on the sidewalk and sing with US!!
{La la la la la}
Fun for ALL ages ...

Monday, May 28, 2007

Freedom is not free...
Special thank you to all the men and women who have/are or will serve in the Armed forces to help keep America FREE... May God be with you.

Happy Memorial Day.

Thursday, May 24, 2007

The 40 day journey …

The Lord can do amazing things in 40 days! In fact, we’ve seen evidence of Him transforming people in 40 days … Examples are: Noah, Moses, David and so on. I was reminded of these amazing miracles when I started reading The Purpose Driven Life by Rick Warren. I like the format of this book because he takes the 40 day transformation process and uses it for an outline for his book. Each chapter contains a bit of ‘transforming material’ and in the beginning the author, Rick, urges the reader to join him on a 40 day journey. And we (the readers) are instructed to read ONE chapter a day. So I’m on day NINE…
The chapter is called – What Makes God Smile?
(I'm sure I can think of a few things ... :))

If you want to join in on the journey – pick up a copy today and find out why YOU are on the earth and what your purpose is.

PS – This book turns your heart and actions to God and no matter your religion – you’ll gain deeper insights as to your relationship and purpose for being here.

For the record: this book has sold over 30 million worldwide.
Pretty good indication that people really do want to know what their purpose on earth is for!!

Below is one of my favorite quotes thus far –
“God made ants to be ants, and he made you to be you."
St. Irenaeus said, “The glory of God is a human being fully alive!”
The Purpose Driven Life: what on Earth Am I Here For?
Rick Warren/ page 55.

Click on the link below for 7 free chapters of this book:

Purpose Driven Life – website:

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

On this day ...

My husband and I have been married 14 years today. And I couldn't help but remember the song he sang for me at our wedding reception - he stepped out of the line and asked our guests to give him a few moments to sing me a song (This was a surprise to me) and a very sweet memory I'll never forget.

He sang: "I love the way you love me" a John Michael Montgomery song.
Below are some of the lyrics:

And I could list a million things
I love to like about you
But they all come down to one reason
I could never live without you.

PS: May 22nd is a beautiful, special day in my life ...
It's the day my entire life changed.
Let the love, adventure, and music continue!!! :)

Monday, May 21, 2007

The seasons change and with them we do too
By Wendy L. Christensen

As each season comes to an end, I find myself anticipating the beginning of the next approaching one. The heat of the summer causes me to long for the cooler days of fall. The never ending piles of leaves prompt me to welcome the snow and winter. And here we are – right at the beginning of summer (or end of spring) and I find myself excited once again for the season at hand.

As I was clicking around online I bumped into a quote by Henry David Thoreau –
Live each season as it passes; breathe the air, drink the drink,
taste the fruit, and resign yourself to the influences of each.

This quote is inspiring and reminds us to live each season as it passes. This year will be my year to really do that. I’m going to take some extra time during each season to breathe the air, drink the drink, taste the fruit and enjoy the influences they provide. (Yes, I’ll even breathe the air of these gray, gloomy days and learn from them what I can). You can too – if you want.

When springtime arrives, I plan on enjoying the new leaves that will decorate the trees. I’ll pay more attention to the miracle of tulips, daffodils and the baby geese along the river. I’ll ride my bike, walk and get out more to enjoy the spring air. As for the drink of springtime, I feel that will be a big glass of ice water with a slice of lemon. As for the fruit – I’ll enjoy whatever is in season.

By taking the time to enjoy the influence of spring, I’ll be ready to live the summer season. Isn’t it wonderful to live in such a sunny, hot region? I think so too! I plan on taking some time to stop at the farmer’s market to pick up fresh tomatoes, cucumbers and cherries. The drink will be pink lemonade (with a lime green umbrella in it). I’ll swim in the pool and sit on the porch and watch the kids ride their bikes until the sun goes down. Come to think of it there’s a little place in the backyard for a garden – I’ll plant it and enjoy everything that grows there.

If I’m lucky, the fruits of the garden will linger to fall. And again, I’ll find myself picking up the brown, crunchy leaves and stuffing them into big, black garbage bags. The days will get shorter and I’ll change the cool settings (in the car and house) to heat. I’ll get ready for school and encourage our children to put on their jackets. We’ll buy pencils, rulers and lined paper. We’ll put the garden hose away.

The jackets will turn to coats and we’ll drink hot chocolate. We’ll cheer at the first snow and go sledding down Carmichael Hill. We’ll put a fire on downstairs and watch old movies. We’ll welcome the holidays and any sun breaks in the clouds. We’ll put a light bulb on the rabbit (in the backyard). We’ll sing Christmas carols and think fondly on the passing year.

Mostly likely, we’ll look back on the seasons and feel grateful for the influences of each. And we’ll recognize that our lives are like the seasons – ever changing and full of color, flavor and beauty!

Wendy is the author of It’s the Little Moments that Matter and can be reached via her website –
PS: The above column is one of my personal favorites ... I hope you enjoyed it too!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

It's Never Too Late ...

This morning, I made a trip to Barnes & Noble… I absolutely LOVE that store. I could spend hours in there! The books talk to me (they do) and I get tons of inspirations just by being there. Ahhhh if you haven’t stopped into a bookstore lately – add it to your to-do list and enjoy getting lost among the endless shelves of books.

The little treasure I found today is called – “It’s Never Too Late… 172 simple acts to change your life” By Patrick Lindsay. Below is an excerpt.

It’s never too late …

to watch a sunset

It’s one of nature’s greatest wonders
No artist can truly capture its aura.
No film can reproduce its splendour.
Watch it alone
or with a loved one.
Drink it in.
Feel humble but feel alive.
Be inspired by its magnificence.

“Everything has its beauty but not everyone sees it.”

Monday, May 14, 2007

I love you the greenest

I love you the greenest
I love you the color of the dark green grass
I love you the color of a wood duck’s neck
And the color of the bright green grass
The skin of a frog
The green of a crayon
The color of an eye
I love you the greenest
By Kaleb Christensen age 9
(My poem for Mother's Day ...)
Now whenever I see anything green I think of him and the priceless love of a child!
:) ....

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Homemade Normandy Rose Jeans ...
(A very sweet memory of my MOM)
My mom has always been an excellent seamstress. One of her greatest joys came from sewing clothes for her five daughters. I am the oldest so I got the better part of her sewing years. You can see her talent displayed (on me) via the school photos through the years. Trust me – it was fashion at its best.

I was happy and very pleased with my wardrobe until about the 5th grade. That was the time I discovered Normandy Rose Jeans. They were made using dark blue denim with a pink rose on the back right pocket.

For a little extra money, my mom fixed and tailored jeans for a local denim store. Somehow she found time to fix the endless piles of jeans at night. We lived in a small three bedroom home and often fell to sleep by the hum of the sewing machine.

One day while we were at the shop, I slipped into a stall and tried on a pair of Normandy Rose jeans. I know my mom wanted to get them…. But there were seven children in our family and money was tight. We went home without them.

That night, I feel asleep to the hum of the sewing machine. The next morning I awoke to find a pair of homemade Normandy Rose Jeans outside my room. Instead of being grateful and appreciative, I cried and told her the big rose patch she ironed on the back pocket would never do! Everyone would know they were NOT real. I never wore them.

Did she respond with hurtful words or anger? No, she simply put them away.

I learned that standing up for your self can be done with respect, dignity and love.
I knew from that day on - because she showed me. Thanks, I love you Mom.
*I submitted this write-up into the "Times Mom Stood Up for Me" contest.
Did I win? No but the experience of entering and remember this sweet
moment with my Mom was worth it :) ...
PS -
Happy Mother's Day... I truly believe there is no better job in the entire world.
Being a Mom is something I cherish ....
Thanks - Kade, Kaleb and Lauren for being so patient with me and allowing me
to live, learn, love and laugh with you ...Oh the things we've learned together.
I love you.

Thursday, May 10, 2007

The Key to the Garden ...

Have you ever read The Secret Garden? I have fond memories of my Mother reading that book to my sisters and I when we were younger. We would imagine the garden and what it looked like and enjoyed knowing that it was secret and only a special few knew of it's existence. We wanted a key to our very own secret garden ...

I don't have a secret garden, but I do have about 15 pots (random sizes and shapes) around my home and every year in early May, I fill them with various plants and flowers. Today was my 'garden day' and it was absolutely wonderful! :)
I am so thankful for days like today and for the beautiful world we live in!!! I feel like saying something a bit corny now (or cheesy) ... You ready? OK it's this ... The key to having a 'beautiful garden' - lies within...
Happy Thursday night! I'm off to dream of keys, flowers, robins, tantrums, and a cry in the night ....
If you have not read this treasured classic - feel free to check out the link below:
The Secret Garden - (The entire book online)

Monday, May 07, 2007

The Etiquette Expert
Jacqueline Whitmore
Last year while I was in Washington, D.C., I had the opportunity to meet a very nice lady. We bumped into each other on the metro line and she asked me for directions – luckily, I was able to help her get to where she was going. We introduced ourselves and I was pleasantly surprised to learn that she is a leading expert on business etiquette.

Her name is Jacqueline Whitmore and she was recently a guest on Fox TV sharing her expertise on Queen Elizabeth II's visit to the U.S. Jacqueline talked with host, Martha MacCallum, about "royalty etiquette."

In addition to knowing how to handle royal visitors, Jacqueline is also an expert on cell phone etiquette. Apparently, she created "National Cell Phone Courtesy Month" (which occurs in July). Have you ever wondered what the proper etiquette is for cell phone use? Feel free to take the quiz and test your mobile phone manners -

(I think this should be a required class in high school) … Cell Phone Etiquette 101!

Feel free to learn more about Jacqueline via her website –

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

{A Rose is a Rose}
my rose pencil sketch 2005
"All of us tend to put off living. We are all dreaming of some magical rose garden over the horizon - instead of enjoying the roses that are blooming outside our windows today."
~ Dale Carnegie
PS: Happy May - Enjoy the roses around you!