Saturday, June 22, 2013

Congratulations Lexi!

MAXMOM here...

I am delighted at the progress of my little Sunbeam...
Today she had her formal assessment for
"Elementary Beginners Obedience"
...and passed with flying colours.
I am so proud of Lexi!
She's gonna be a dream-doggie.

Well done, Lexi!!!

Friday, June 21, 2013

The wonder of Creative talent... I am thankful, are you?

Dear friends.

Admittedly, the tone of this blog has changed over the past two months.  I know some of my readers may be confused by this trend. The reason for the change is that I am on a heightened spiritual journey at the moment.  Sometimes this happens in my life - where I sense a shift.  I have learned to honor these times and to simply allow its effect into my writing.

As always, this blog remains open and honest with a vision to 'share, care and uplift'. 
So I hope you enjoy today's post - in the spirit it is intended - with love.  



Many years ago, as a mother of two very young daughters, I came across an unusual course - one of sculptured-cloth-doll-making.  At the time, the “wonder of babies” was still uppermost in my mind. I was entranced with the prospect of making these dolls.  How my little girls would enjoy them, I thought. 

I joined up with a group of women on a Tuesday morning.  The atmosphere was alive with anticipation. Our materials were ready.  These included stretchy fabric, polyester stuffing, fur-fabric, paint and embroidery cotton (for the eyes) and a very long needle which was going to be used to ‘sculpt’ the doll (from the inside out!) 

At last we set about cutting the various pieces of fabric which would eventually make up the body of the doll.  We gingerly stitched the pieces together and when that was complete, we began the painstaking task of stuffing the dolls and assembling their parts. They were going to be fully jointed dolls with movable limbs.

The doll's basic body was finally ready for the tricky task of shaping its features.  Using the prescribed long needle, we began to shape its cheeks, mouth, eyes, dimples, fingers, toes and knees by moving the inside stuffing around. Each step drew us closer to the ultimate look of the doll.  We even gave them tiny nostrils, hair and painted eyes. (The eyes alone took up a whole lesson). We all watched, in awe, as each doll seemingly came to life in our laps.  It intrigued me that, despite using the exact same pattern for the dolls, they all looked different - each with unique features and its own little ‘personality’. 

Finally, we were given the secret to making them really look alive - a tiny white dot on the edge of their pupils.  This immediately brightened up their sweet faces and gave them the essence of 'light and life’.

It took many hours to craft these dolls. Once I got the hang of it I made many - selling them off to bring in some extra money for our young family.  I kept the one in the attached photograph (above).  It wasn't my best work, but it had a special intrigue – it was the smallest of the many I made and the most cherished.  The truth, however, is that I enjoyed every doll I made.  They became symbolic of me as a person – ironically sharing similar features.  In all honesty, I would have loved them no matter what they looked like… I was simply overjoyed at the opportunity to make them.

Now here's an interesting idea...

I cannot help but draw a parallel to the amazing creative efforts that went into the creation of us as human beings. I believe that we have been carefully constructed - mind, body and soul - with a unique purpose.  Imagine how our Creator must have felt when he had put on the final touches and sat back to study his efforts. The imagery of us lying in his loving hands rests deeply in my soul. He too must have marvelled at the final product and taken delight at how we had come to life.  

Consider that God must have admired his handiwork and marvelled at the vulnerable human being which stood before him.  I am certain that He loved us no matter what we looked like.  What a joy it must have been to be able to create such a wonder. 

His ultimate feat, however, must have been the life that he breathed into us all – a mystery which has puzzled every scientist and ordinary human being at some stage of their lives.  Like any parent ,God must have had immense hope for our future.   We are told that:

"...God saw all that he had made, and it was very good." (Genesis 1 v 31)

My question is this: How would you feel if someone criticised your carefully put together handiwork? To add insult to injury,how would God feel if he saw us constantly criticising ourselves?  I know that if someone had criticised and found fault with my dolls, I would have been immensely hurt - such love had gone into them! Would our Creator not feel the same way about us?

Today, I invite you to join me as I reflect on the magnificence of God’s Creation – all the creatures, plants, animals, insects and, of course, us as unique human beings. I don't know about you, but I am grateful for who I am and what I am able to do.  I am grateful for the many blessings which have been bestowed on me as well as my unique gifts and talents. We all have been blessed with something - how else would we be alive?.  

What do you think?

“I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well.” (Psalm 139 v 14)

Sending lots of love to you all and wishing you a wonderful, creative weekend.
Please know that you are deeply loved!

Wednesday, June 12, 2013

"Pawprints in the Sand"

The imagery of the poem Footprints in the sand”, by MaryStevenson, has always played out vividly in my mind... 

 When I read this poem, I can almost feel the spray of sea water on my face and the sand under my feet as I walk beside my Father and share the hills and valleys of my life.  I stop to admire the gentle footprints which depict my journey and I watch, in awe, as my own footprints disappear during the darker times of my life. But there is something missing ...

Don't get me wrong, the poem is beautifully written.  But had I written the poem myself, I would most probably, have added another set of footprints – I would have added the little indentations of my God-given canine companions. I can't imagine my world without them.  Their smaller, gentler footprints would be there - assisting the Father when things got tough.  I regard my DOGS as His angels on earth.  For me, “Footprints in the sand” has always included four extra footprints.

A clear example of what I am saying was played out during my “Maxdog”journey. (2000-2010)  God gave me Max – an earthly angel – to assist with my healing process.  He knew how to connect with me in a way which spoke deep into my heart…God taught me of the wonders of His love through my special Max.  It was a time, when I was being ‘carried’ on that figurative beach with the single footprints, but also a time when God showed His love to me through the gift of my beautiful dog.

How often we overlook the joy, comfort and tender devotion of our animals - especially at the times when we are at our most distraught.  They are always present; ever- willing and ready for whatever we bring to them.  To me, they will always be God’s special angels on this planet – to reach out to us when our own species has possibly failed us, but also to teach us about the joys and beauty of this life. They provide the message - there is hope for this world...
 DOG’s exuberance for life is contagious.  Their ability to keep things simple is their very nature.  They bury the past and appreciate the present. 

 So is their ability to ‘live in the moment’, to offer friendship, to welcome guests, to be thankful for food and provision and good health.  They show us how to relish the opportunity of sharing time with others, to play, to sleep, to rest….the list goes on and on.   DOG is an example to us all! 

 Best of all; the time that they spend with us is totally unconditional – exactly like the love of God.  They are aware of, but immune to our frustration and anger, and choose to celebrate every glorious moment.  

In many ways they mimic the ways of the Father who has created them. It is hardly ironic that the name given to them, i.e” D-O-G”,  is a mirror image of the name we give our Heavenly Father.

It is three years since Max crossed the rainbow bridge. His memory lives on and his life continues to teach me and to touch others.  Nowadays, I am blessed with my current pack of beautiful canine companions - Tammy, Toby and little Lexi.  Every day I look at them and realise how blessed I am.  I am reminded of the great love of my Heavenly Father...and I am thankful.

May your life also be touched by your animals - deeply.

sending lotsaluv,