I'm sad but not sorry these High Five Friday lists have come to an end.
While many people received these posts from a positive view, some viewed the posts as if I thought I was full of myself, as if I'm some kind of celebrity and everyone wants to read my stuff. I don't want to spend a lot of time answering for the things I do. I will lay a little lower and keep my thoughts more private.
So, with no more ado, here are my final (shared) high fives for this week.
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: Take My Life (And Let It Be) by Chris Tomlin
I had an opportunity to sing this song as a duet with someone on my worship team. It has become one of my favorite songs to sing, even when I'm not singing it with someone else.
2. What I learned the most about myself. I despise drama.
Sometimes I get drawn in because I’m not on my guard. But, when I have it my way, I stay out of the midst of drama. It never serves anyone well. When I see drama, I turn and RUN the other way.
3. Bible verse that keeps me faithful: 1 Peter 1:8-9 (New International Version)
Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy, for you are receiving the end result of your faith, the salvation of your souls.
4. Favorite life quotes: by Dr. Wayne Dyer
5. Most important message I want to deliver: Life is short
None of us live forever and none of us know when our final day on earth will be. That makes life short. I make an effort to leave bad baggage behind… dropping it like it’s hot and never looking back to see if it is worthy to be picked up again.
Friends, you only have one life.
Live it well!
Surgery went well and I am back to life after one week of rest and recuperation. These High Five moments are meant to be short so as not to take up too much time, otherwise I might find excuses for not doing it. This is kind of like a journal that I plan to visit again next year to experience the joy of living and hopefully see how my life has grown from one point in time to another.
My world is simple and humble. Still, each day, I jot down things that went well or caused me to think and grow. At the end of the week, I list the five things that seem most important to me. I hope I encourage you to take time at the end of your day to think about the things that are precious and motivating to you.
Here are the things I give a High Five to this week.
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: “Lovely Day” by Bill Withers
I like music of most genres. But, I like “clean” music. I am quickly offended when I hear lyrics with foul language. I listen to a lot of Christian music, but there are some secular songs that grab my attention, too. Music from the olden days, with fun beats and lyrics that speak of love and happiness are what I enjoy most. Lovely Day is one of those songs that I could listen to all day long and never get tired of hearing it.
2. The verse that caught my attention. Hebrews 11:7
“By faith Noah, when warned about things not yet seen, in holy fear built an ark to save his family. By his faith he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness that comes by faith”s
I have a lot of faith, but I want to be like Noah, obedient, unafraid, knowing God will help me do the things I fear to do.
3. Activity that is a stress reliever: Art Journals
I am a real fan of art journalism. It is a fun outlet for me to be expressive with doodling, painting, and coloring. I’m no Picasso, but that’s OK. I’m me and that has to be good enough.
4. The thing that impressed me the most: UC Davis Medical Center
I had my foot surgery at UC Davis Medical Center. From the moment I walked through the doors, to the time after the surgery, the doctors and staff members treated me like I was the only patient in the entire building. They are kind and attentive. They called to follow up several times and made sure I had the direct line to someone so that if I had any concerns, I could call and ask for someone by name to get answers. I had a duplicate experience with the first surgery, as well. If you ever have an opportunity to be served by UC Davis, you are in for a treat. Those people have “mad” skills!
5. Finding humor in the most unusual thing: The Republican Debate
I know politics is supposed to be a serious matter. But, watching the latest debate was actually kind of humorous. Watching the debaters unilaterally attack the moderators gave the debate a whole new meaning. It was like the debaters established some sort of consortion with each other prior to the debate. The questions presented by the moderators were nonsense which took any kind of seriousness off the table, but I do have to admit that the main attraction was Donald Trump. That man is a hoot.
Thank you for reading this week's High Fives!
“Baby steps count, as long as you are going forward. You add them all up, and one day you look back and you’ll be surprised at where you might get to.”
This week flew by fast. There were some life challenges that I managed to overcome each day this week, but through the process of active positive thinking and it should go without saying, prayer, I found time at the end of each day to discover things that made each day special.
Here are the five things I give a high five to this week.
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: “Everybody Praise the Lord,” by Lincoln Brewster.
Music is always going to be part of my high fives...
If you have never heard this song, get ready to hear the most “rocking” Christian song ever. It will have you wanting to get up out of your seat and dance.
Everybody praise the Lord
Everybody praise the Lord
2. The best thing about being a mom: My children are amazing people.
When I first became a parent, I wondered if my parenting skills were good enough to raise little humans to function well in the world. Years later, my little humans are all grown up and active contributors to society. I'm blessed! I have children who are the most extraordinary people I know. They are beautiful inside and out. They are thoughtful, caring, loving, and so much more. I am blessed… very blessed to have them in my life. That’s worth "in the sky" high fives!
4. What I am watching on TV these days: "Alaska the Last Frontier."
When I first started watching this show, I wondered why in the world people would want to go to the bathroom in an outhouse. Why would people not want running water? Part of me realizes it is a reality TV show and these people get paid to show us how it is to live in the wilderness, fending for themselves. But, after a few episodes, I found it extremely fascinating to see how they grow their own food and make their own remedies. Through watching the show, I learned that Cottonwood Buds are great for making an antiseptic skin ointment. I learned how to make my own soap. I learned how to store food for the winter. Now, when I watch an episode, I watch to see what I can learn from it. It’s not just a TV show to me anymore; it’s a learning experience.
5. Funniest commercial I saw: State Farm Aaron Rodgers Commercial 2015.
I normally fast forward through commercials, but this one caught my eye. In fact, this commercial was so funny I replayed it to get another laugh. It's about a referee faking the call.
If you like funny referee jokes, you’ll get a kick out of some of the other referee commercials. Subway and Budweiser also have funny referee commercials. You can find them on YouTube. Just type any number of queries – (funny, referee, commercial, Subway, Budweiser). Their commercials are hilarious!
That's it, friends!
Thank you for reading about my high fives for the week. Hopefully, you are encouraged to take time each day to see that, in spite of anything that is going on, your life is truly wonderful.
Next week, I'm going in for surgery again and I already know that I will be out of commission for a while. The best thing I can do to speed up recovery is to take complete rest and relaxation. I will be off my computer for a while, but I will be thinking of all my family and friends. You mean a lot to me. I pray for you every day.
I pray that you have lots of love and many blessings.
You need not worry about anything in life.
Trust that Your Father in heaven will take good care of you.
It has been a very slow week. There is not much going on in the garden, so I mostly had to search for things to high five this week.
I'm living by my concept that life is short and so I should live it with vigor. Each day, there is always something to be grateful for beyond just, "I'm alive!"
This High Five exercise is training my brain to think positively. No matter what is going on around me, there is always something to be positive about.
I absolutely encourage everyone to take five minutes at the end of each day and identify at least one thing that is positive in your life. Do this every day and you will be amazed at how quickly you learn to embrace the good and discard the bad. For example, let's say your boss, neighbor, friend, or family member said or did something unsettling. In light of that, if you are able to bite your tongue and not lash out at them, you could give a high five to maintaining your composure and being the better person. Everything positive counts!
Here are the five things I slap a high five to this week...
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: “The Prayer” written by David Foster, Carole Bayer Sager, Alberto Testa, and Tony Renis. Sung by Celine Dion & Andrea Bocelli.
The theme song from “Quest for Cemelot”.
This is one of those songs that I discovered while scanning through YouTube videos. When the autoplay feature is turned on sometimes I end up hearing songs I never would have selected on my own. This song started playing automatically and I have listened to it so many times I can’t even give you a ballpark number.
I pray you'll be our eyes
And watch us where we go
And help us to be wise
In times when we don't know
Let this be our prayer when we lose our way
Lead us to a place
Guide us with your grace
To a place where we'll be safe
2. Something that made me go, “Hmmmmmm…”: “He that runs fastest, runs by himself.”
I read this in The Old Farmer’s Almanac,” 2015 edition. For some reason, I read this statement as if it was a life lesson. In every game, there is going to be an ultimate winner. But, what is the prize? Is the prize worth running ahead of everybody else to obtain it? Would I be happy as the sole winner, or would I enjoy the prize more if I had someone to share it with?
After reading the Almanac statement and pondering for a moment, my phone rang. It was my mother. We chit chatted for a few minutes and then the conversation turned to a place which lead her to say, “No accomplishment is worth anything if you don’t reach down and bring someone up with you.” In light of the way my mind was already working, this was a very timely statement. She wanted me to understand that people should always look toward helping others and not just themselves. Her message is, if you are successful, do what you can to make someone else successful too.
That’s my mom. She doesn’t spend a lot of time dishing out advice, but every now and then, when my mind is open to receiving it, she slips in some very profound statements that cause me to pause and consider how my life would be more valuable if I lived by her words of wisdom.
As a publisher, I would have access to an unlimited number of books to read. In fact, reading would be my job. The thought of being a publisher has always lurked in the back of my mind. Then, this week, something amazing happened. I stumbled upon information “by accident” that will allow me to make that happen. I know I would not have found this information on my own. The timing was perfect. My mind was receptive and because my plan is to help others, the answer was given to me in a way that allows me to move forward on a path that will help others in a unique and beneficial way. As this venture progresses, I'll certainly share more. Suffice it to say that I will be adding, "Publisher" to my name tag this week. God is good!
4. Good news from my orthopedic surgeon: I got the OK to have surgery on my left foot!
Most people don't get excited about having surgery, but I am ecstatic. Earlier this year, I had surgery on my right foot and now, almost a year later, my foot has healed enough that I can schedule surgery for the other foot. My excitement comes from the fact that I have been in extreme pain from arthritis, bunions, bone spurs, and planter facetious in both feet for many years. Needless to say, for a very long time, walking has not been a pleasure. Now, my right foot is at a pain level 2 (a far cry from a pain level 10+). Anticipation that my left foot will be relieved in the same way has me tickled to no end.
Surgery is coming up in a week-and-a-half, so I will write High Five Friday! Week 7 and then take some time away from writing in order to recuperate. While I will be away for some time, I will not abandon this project anytime soon. It has truly been the perfect tool to help me hone in on the positive aspects of life, which in turn has helped me realize that I may not have all the luxuries of my previous lifestyle, but the life I have right now is a pretty good life.
5. The thought that blew my mind the most: It takes lettuce 30 days to mature!
Why did this thought blow my mind? I planted lettuce seeds on October 8, 2015. All I have to do is give it water and on November 7, I will be able to make a salad with that lettuce. Isn't that amazing?
Friends, thank you for reading the highlights of my life for this week.
I pray for you to have a rich and fulfilling life.
Have a wonderfully blessed weekend.
Because He lives!
Without any ado, here are the things I give a High Five to this week.
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: Pray to Your Name, by Don Chapman and Adam Fisher, sung by Steve Smith and the Brookwood Church Praise Choir.
When I was a worship leader, I would spend hours at a time, listening to songs to sing during worship time. This is one of my favorite songs. I listen to it over and over and never get tired of hearing it.
"When there's nothing I can do, I will lift my eyes to you..."
This week I noticed my clothes were fitting more loosely. I weighed myself and I discovered I had lost a little bit of weight. I also noticed that the arthritis pain in my shoulders had reduced. In the past, I was unable to raise my arms without extreme pain. Now, I can raise my hands above my head and swing them in circles. There is still a little pain, but I can do more today than I have been able to do in a very long time. I am open to considering that my results may be psychological, but I don’t care. I’m seeing positive results. No pain is all gain.. that is... unless it's weight gain. Tee hee hee!
I read that as a pain reliever, capsaicin is so powerful it is banned from use at Equestrian sporting events. Horses that test positive for capsaicin are banned from racing.
Here is my disclaimer for sharing my experience with capsaicin. I am not a doctor, so I cannot give an official account of the effects of capsaicin. Your experience may be completely different than mine. If you have any medical conditions, be sure to check with your doctor before trying capsaicin or any supplement.
3. Truism: A fake online friend can be more real than a live fake friend.
Think about it.
Sometimes the people we have never met in our lives – fake... virtual people who support us online through professional communities and forums can give us the kind of support we need to thrive in life. Sometimes the live... actual people we associate with on a regular basis can be the most hurtful, least supportive people in the world.
I strongly believe that whether virtual or actual, we live a better life by hanging out with the people who instill confidence in us, helping us to become better people. Our Heavenly Father desires for us to serve others with the kind of love and compassion that he shows us. Be real. Be kind. Be gentle.
“Treat others the same way you want them to treat you.” Luke 6:31 (New American Standard Bible)
The golden rule!
4. Bible verse that helped me through the week: Philippians 4:13 (New King James Version)
I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.
5. Television show that had me rolling on the floor laughing: Best Time Ever with host Neil Patrick Harris.
This is one of those shows that I thought was going to be… stupid. But, this week as I was thumbing through the channels wishing there was something decent to watch, I lingered on NBC just long enough to catch the gist of the show. Best Time Ever is a variety show containing pure entertainment. Before the show ended, I set my cable service to record every episode. I actually went back to re-watch that night’s episode again. It is stupidly funny and now I look forward to watching it again next week. Few shows capture my attention the way this show does. It’s clean, it’s humorous, and that Neil Patrick Harris is one very talented guy.
Aside from the highlights, it has been a rather uneventful week. Quiet days leave me challenged to find the one thing that stood out in that day. When there is nothing happening, it forces me to be even more quiet and reflective, thinking about the things I am grateful for.
Here are the five things I am grateful for this week.
My High Fives for this Friday...
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: All of Me by John Legend
“I give you all of me and you give me all of you.”
Whenever this song comes on, my husband and I sing it like a duet. He actually has a really nice voice. He can hit all the high notes in this song... on pitch, I might add. Nowadays, I don’t really know how John Legend sounds when he sings this song, because my husband and I sing over the song at the top of our lungs every time it comes on. It’s like our cue to sing loud. It’s a little out of character for both of us to break out in song, but it’s kind of fun. This is one of those things that make memories we can share with our grand kids someday.
Lo and behold, I get a phone call from a real estate broker whose blog I maintain each week. I also create CMA’s and help her with her marketing program. Anyway, she calls me on Monday morning and asks me if I would consider being her Escrow Coordinator. What? Of course! I jumped at the opportunity to work a few hours here and there and bring in a few hundred dollars per transaction. Everything is digitally managed. After being in real estate for 26 years, I would have no trouble managing the escrow transactions this broker has lined up for me to coordinate.
Most people would think this is pure coincidence. I know better. This is my heavenly Father looking out for me. He knew what I needed, knew my anxiety, knew my willingness to do what needed to be done for the money and so He provided a way for me to obtain the money in a way that would be most rewarding for me. That’s my Amazing God! He just does stuff like that.
3. Most fun I had: This actually happened last week, but on the weekend. I had the pleasure of attending my youngest grandson’s football game. Oh what fun I had in the stands with my husband, daughter and all the fans (parents) rooting on the young players. They won their game and so the mood was high. After the game, we went to my daughter’s home where she provided a scrumptious dinner. By the way, I want the recipe for the spices used on that Tri Tip Steak. Anyway, we laughed and carried on like party hounds. It was fun. It was memorable and I can hardly wait until we do that again.
4. Best life lesson: (Poem) You Pen a Post
You pen a post
An update boast
Expect at most
You’re not a ghost
© Marlene C. Bertrand 2015
Few things can drive your demeanor down like a Facebook post that gets zero responses. You share an update with your “friends” and it seems like no one cares. This happens to me a lot. In the past, it made me feel insignificant. Fortunately, I am quick to shake off that feeling of inferiority. People are as busy taking care of their lives as I am taking care of my life. Besides, it’s more fun interacting with live people, getting real hugs instead of virtual (((((HUGS))))), (SMILEY FACE), and I (HEART) U.
5. What I am really happy about: Pope Francis’ visit to the U.S.
Even though I am not Catholic, millions of people in this country are Catholic. The truth is, people don’t have to be Catholic to appreciate the Pope’s message of love and peace. I am happy the Pope had time to visit our country because so many people are lost in this world and the presence of the Pope gives us all hope that things will get better here. I know people are listening to the Pope, and when I hear the Pope say things like, “Treat others as you would have them treat you.” I get the feeling things have a chance of getting better.
Those are my High Fives for this Friday. Please leave a comment, maybe share something you are grateful for this week. Have a wonderful weekend!
Here are the highlights of week 3.
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: Duet: “Tell Him” by Celine Dion & Barbra Streisand.
This is a beautiful blend of two of the prettiest voices on the planet.
Some of the lyrics: “Tell him that the sun and moon rise in his eyes…” “Love will be the gift you give yourself...” “Never let him go...”
This song reminds me of how fortunate I am to be married to someone who jumps up with joy to help me in anything I do. This is a man who wakes up every morning and jumps out of bed like a Pogo stick. The entire day is filled with excitement when he’s around. This song reminds me to thank him for the joy he brings to my life each day.
2. Best news I heard all week: “You have been pre-approved for the loan.”
My husband and I have been saving for years to build on some vacant land that we purchased. We paid all cash for the land and wanted to keep the property unencumbered with loan obligations. So we save a little and build a little. It has been five years now and the property is still not complete. We wanted to build without a loan. But, we’re getting older and more tired. Now, we just want the thing to be done. So, we applied for a home loan and were pre-approved for the loan. That’s good news. It’s the best news we’ve heard all week. But, we’re not totally happy because it means we have given up our goal of owning the property free and clear. We haven’t accepted the loan yet. Still, it is good news. We’re praying about this loan and we’ll make a definitive decision next week.
4. Most inspirational message: Poem - Sorrow Seems to Follow
Sorrow seems to follow
Everywhere you look.
Maybe you need new glasses
And a word from the good book.
©Marlene C. Bertrand 2015
5. Funniest joke I heard: Told by Drew Lynch - Contestant on America's Got Talent.
Drew is a stuttering comedian who made it to the finals. His jokes are hilarious. When Nick Cannon asks Drew what it would mean for him to win America’s Got Talent, Drew answers something like this, “Well, my girlfriend has been working three jobs so that I can pursue my dream. If I win America’s Got Talent, I’ll let her drop down to two.”
The crowd roared. I fell on the floor laughing.
That's it for High Five Friday. Have a great weekend!
High Five Friday! The highlights!
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: “Thinking Out Loud”, by Ed Sheeran. My favorite verse is the lyrics where he sings, “We found love right where we are.” I don’t think he has ever written a song I didn’t like. The video that accompanies this song is really quite beautiful. I didn’t know Ed could dance. He can, and he does quite well. Watch him perform with a very talented dancer in the official video of Thinking Out Loud.
2. Funniest joke I read: The joke is about priorities -
A writer comes home to a burned down house. His sobbing and slightly-singed wife is standing outside. "What happened, honey?" the man asks.
"Oh, John, it was terrible," she weeps. "I was cooking, the phone rang. It was your agent. Because I was on the phone, I didn't notice the stove was on fire. It went up in seconds. Everything is gone. I nearly didn't make it out of the house. Poor Fluffy is--"
"Wait, wait. Back up a minute," The man says. "My agent called?"
3. Best thing I discovered: Adult coloring books. They have all kinds of themes. The ones that peak my interest are the coloring books that have the stress-relieving patterns. You can buy them at book stores or online at places like Amazon. They are reasonably priced, too. Who would have thought that as an adult, I would still be coloring in books.
4. Most exciting place I visited: Like I said before, I don’t get out much, so the most exciting place I visited this week was the Department of Disabled Veterans (DAV) in Yuba City. The DAV was conducting a free help seminar to assist disabled veterans receive the benefits they are entitled to receive. I went there with my husband who is a veteran who was wounded during the Vietnam war.
5. Most inspirational message: “Whatever you say, whatever you do, people are watching and learning from you.” –Marlene Bertrand. I wrote this one especially to state that as a parent, we have an opportunity to teach our children how to behave. Children are good at mimicking. They watch what we do so they can copy us. We are their teachers. They are watching and learning from us. Our children are not the only ones who are watching what we do. Other people, who we interact with on a regular basis or by chance, are also watching what we do. This is another opportunity to teach and mentor to all people through our actions.
Well, folks! Those are the high fives for my week. Have a wonderfully blessed weekend.
I got the idea of keeping an ongoing recap of my week from an entrepreneur named Timothy Ferriss. For those who know Timothy Ferriss, you know he is a fearless leader who wrote a book titled, "The Four-Hour Workweek." If you haven't read his book, I highly recommend that you pick up a copy of it today. It will change the way you go about your day-to-day activities.
I'm calling my weekly series, "High Five Friday!" So in the spirit of High Five Friday, here is a weekly snapshot of what I enjoyed this week.
High Five Friday! - Week 1
1. Song I enjoyed listening to the most: “Can’t Feel My Face” by The Weeknd. I like the beat. People say it’s about a girl who introduces a guy to coke. The lyrics don't actually say that; it's just how people interpret it. But, who knows for sure? Anyway, I enjoy every beat of this song.
2. Funniest thing I saw: A pretzel shaped like a Treble Clef.
3. Best thing I read (in addition to the Bible): An inspirational book titled, “Steer Your Big Boat Your Own Way: An All-inclusive Master Guide to Boost up your Self Confidence, Build Self Esteem and Enhance Your Self Efficacy Instantly & Retain it Everlastingly.” That’s a long title by Udolph Singh. I had the fortunate opportunity to accept an invitation to write a review for this enlightening book.
4. Most exciting place I visited: I don’t get out much, but considering that I must enter something here, the most exciting place I visited this week was “Habitat for Humanity.” That place is amazing. It is operated by volunteers. Everyone there seem to be extremely happy to be there. Everything in the store is donated and the proceeds go to help volunteers build houses for the community. If you have a chance to visit a Habitat for Humanity in your area, do it. You will enjoy the service and the prices for their home building supplies and tools are extremely marked down as compared to big name brand stores.
5. Most inspirational message: "Your good reputation may open the door, but your talent lets you in." This is actually something I tweeted to make a point that people often give you opportunities just because of your reputation, but you then have an obligation to do an excellent job to show them you were worth it.
That's it for this week's High Five Friday! Have a wonderful Labor Day Weekend!