Thursday, August 16, 2018

Loved ~ Five Minute Friday 💜

no editing  or overthinking...
Just  writing.

This week's prompt~~~~

Loved

She loved without question and trusted without reservation.
She was open and honest.
She g-r-a-d-u-a-l-l-y though,  
slowly and without realizing, entered a coma.
Many years in.
She compromised, appeased, acquiesced,  honored her vows....
She lost herself.

Outwardly, she functioned daily, weekly...yearly.....
she met obligations....she birthed and raised their children.
Her loves..... damaged too.

Inwardly, she  almost died a slow  agonizing death, 
almost murdered by his poison.
His cruelty.
His silence.
His anger.
His rage.
Almost killed by an evil she couldn't see or comprehend.
The man she loved, who vowed to love her, honor her, protect her...
was the one she needed protection against.
She gathered the resolve..... she prayed......

Cross and cloudy sky

...she found courage on the other side of that fear and  that anxiety.
She awoke from that coma.
She took action.........and found relief.
....happiness.
....support.
...approval.

......Life.

..... She found Love

........She found normal



If these scenarios sound hauntingly familiar,
please consult this site
for more information and this site for tangible, practical help 

You can always always contact me.
This is a no -  judgement,
what-you-say-goes-no-where zone.
I mean it.
< Hugs. >


Thank you for spending some of your precious time today
here at my home on the web.

Until next time,

~Chris

   
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You can easily subscribe to Campfires and Cleats by email.....

Wednesday, August 8, 2018

Life & blogging during the tough stuff ~ Just be brave


My friends, my readers...
my people.....!
This is so long in coming.
Sounds cliche, but wow, I've missed you.
You have no idea how much I've missed you.
While I can't detail these past months since 
my last contact with you ......yet........
I am finally achieving some clarity and I'm ready
to reach out briefly to say simply ~ 
I'm here  ~  I'll be back soon ~  And I love you guys.

Okay, sigh....a little backstory? 
  Campfires and Cleats started out over six years ago 
as a small homeschool blog
where I'd share some curriculum, ideas, crafts,
theater, liturgical year tidbits, fun.
The homeschool life.

Gradually, I broadened scope and
 began blogging toward home.
Writing regular memoir type poems and prose on childhood,
family, summer, the seasons of life,
 the making of a house into a home.

Then......a gradual evolution toward  family travel
became the focus here.
Recounting our cross country treks, adventures,
partnerships with companies and brands as we journeyed
through 47 states and too - many - to - name national parks,
monuments, cities, historical and natural wonders.

Through all my chronicles, I've met remarkable people.
You are not "just" readers.....you're friends...
you've become part of my life.
Yup, my blog became my happy place where friends
across six continents ...yes six continents!!!.......
stopped by, shared lives, loves, stories.
.
As you can see, I've had a hard time
niche-ing my blog and I think my home on the web will just have
to keep reflecting life in all its
blinding beauty and its messy broken pieces
and un-niched, uncategorized-ness.

So....... a  new transition...a new focus? Sort of.....
Because  I find that when my life transitions, my writing does too~

Because authenticity  is what I'm all about
in "reality" as I am here on the blog.

Because support for one another should be accessible and present
and should not be silent.

Because not everyone who needs strength appears to be in need.

Because strong women silently build and support one another.

Because when the hard things happen
over and over and over like
the relentless pounding of the surf with
no relief and seemingly no way out...........take a breath,
say a prayer and make a move.
There is always a way.
Especially with the Lord and your people in your corner.

Because your tribe is key.
Once you let them in, they're there for you more than you know.



Because some will disagree with the steps you take.
They are not you........
You  know what you need to do.
And step one is blocking out the noise and following your instincts.

Because you can only practice forgiveness and mercy 
for so long before you break.

Because you'll get that miracle you prayed for.....you will.
But... you might need help recognizing it.
 God is good and He does provide and you know this already.
He may not give you what you ask for but 
He'll give you what you need.


Because when tough stuff happens, 
it'll be more clear than ever that
 fear and courage are two sides of the same coin.

Because no one has a monopoly on that courage or on that fear.
 You can do this.

Because you have what it takes.

Because  I'm here if you need someone.

Because these words are truth: 
He knows not his own strength who has not met adversity
~Samuel Johnson

Because of transition in my life  now and 
the  offer of  condolences are prevalent
 ........... while that's generous and seemingly appropriate......... 
 relief and happiness are in order.
And more is forthcoming.
Soon...............
I wish I didn't have to shroud but I do.

Because JPII's words mean more now
than ever......"Be not afraid."

As an aside, in terms of discretion......
 If you want to talk, comments are moderated
 and only posted through my approval.
If you need to communicate with me and don't wish your comment 
published, it will not be published.
I will reply privately.
Alternatively, email is an option: campfiresandcleats@gmail.com

And friends, thanks for sticking around.....💛




Thank you for spending some of your precious time today
here at my home on the web.

Until next time,

~Chris

      Board Slate Blackboard Font Courageous Bra


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You can easily subscribe to Campfires and Cleats by email.....

Monday, March 26, 2018

Monday mashup & links I love

                                                         A gathering of thoughts, 
                                                   links, news, highlights, funnies,
                                                                      and / or
 the latest goings - on here at the blog.
Sort of a weekly dumping ground of updates and features.........:
Here goes: 


You know we love travel around here....
when we're not actually out and on the road, 
the next best thing is reading about it...new places, old places.
Doesn't matter.

I've recently fallen for Kristin Hannah's latest,  The Great Alone,


based on her real life experiences living in Alaska!
I'm a huge huge Kristin Hannah admirer, but this, 
when paired with Krakauer's Into the Wild, is a perfect match.
The latter title's about a young man from a 
wealthy family who ditched his life, donated tons to charity then burned his cash
 determined to adventure through nature much like
his heroes, John Muir and Jack London.



I won't give away more of the plot, but it is a must-read.


I've seen this gem in a few places on social media
and since I love it and believe it,  had to share here!:





I've a giveaway coming up for this wonderful 
sacramental prep book.
It served both my kids well as they prepared for confirmation years ago
and I'd be delighted to offer a copy to one fortunate reader 
lucky enough to win!
Once "sacrament season" is upon us, after Easter, I'll be posting!
So come on back soon!   😉


Since we entered Holy Week yesterday,
I thought I'd share my post from the archives on 
making all sorts of lovely palm crosses, rosettes and more.....✝️







Baby chimp = adorable co-pilot!
Pilot Anthony Caere transports sweet little Mussa from
poachers in the Democratic Republic of Congo to the
Lwior Primates Sanctuary....Watch here!


photo credit: Animal Planet










Thank you for spending some of your precious time today
here at my home on the web! 

Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just click here to 
quickly and easily  so we can be in touch regularly!
You might wish to follow on Facebook as well.....


If you are shopping at  amazon and Target
why not consider clicking through my link
In this way, I will receive a small commission on the purchase.....
at no cost to you.
THANK YOU!

Until next time,


~Chris



BTW, I'm offering photo services and customized
photo packages for your blog or business!
< Subscribers receive a deep discount! > 

Friday, March 23, 2018

Friday Flashback & Weekly Wrap

A weekly walk through the archives
where past posts re-emerge!

I feel like I wrote these only recently and for some, 
it's been years.


A month ago on the blog:

Authenticity and Loss in the Blogosphere ~ 
Rest in Peace, Denise

St Gabriel Windows


A year ago on the blog~~

Defeat, Endurance, Loss: The Stuff of Lent



Two years ago on the blog 

"Surprise" ~ Five Minute Friday




Three years ago on the blog~

The 5 Best Moments: Doctor Who Season 1


Tardis Dr Who Doctor Who Undergrowth Leave


Four years ago on the blog~
 Glow in the Dark Eggs, St Joseph's Feast Day & the Annunciation: 
"And the light shines in darkness..." 




Five years ago on the blog~
Artful Friday: Yeats, Joyce and Watercolor
 with a Little Vivaldi Thrown In!

                    
             

This week on the blog~

 What's Your Jerusalem? 




Monday mashup & links I love
'
Message In A Bottle Post Bottle Sand Beach

Lengthening Shadows:  Adirondack Haven








Return to product information



...and with Holy Week almost upon us, you might like to visit my
Palm Crosses, Rosettes, Knots and Scripture Verses  from the archives!
Enjoy!



Thank you for spending some of your precious time today
here at my home on the web! 

Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just click here to 
quickly and easily  so we can be in touch regularly!
You might wish to follow on Facebook as well.....



If you are shopping at  amazon and Target
why not consider clicking through my link
In this way, I will receive a small commission on the purchase.....
at no cost to you.
THANK YOU!

Until next time,
~Chris



BTW, I'm offering photo services and customized
photo packages for your blog or business!
< Subscribers receive a deep discount! > 

Monday, March 19, 2018

What's Your Jerusalem?


Who else has had such a lasting,  such an enduring 
effect on civilization ??
Of all the leaders? Royal figures?
All those names bolded in history texts...
Napoleon? Victoria?  Lincoln?
 All those  we know so well.... 
none hold a candle to the One who led by
kindness and  forgiveness, not by reprisal and arms.



From a distance  of 2000 years,
 it’s easy to forget the shouts of the crowds....
...... that it was not the weight of the cross
 but the weight of our sins that caused Jesus to fall.
 Not once, not twice….three times.


Was it a comfort to Him to know SOMEONE was heart broken? 
That some were there for him?

That despite the Romans’ shouting and torment and threats and beatings,
despite admonishments to not wipe His face,
 not help  Him, touch Him, offer water to Him…
that they were there?
Strong and unwavering in their support were 
these women of Jerusalem.
These women paved the way. 
They were the hands feet and heart of Jesus…
the last He spoke to before He died and the first when He rose.

This.
This is Feminine Genius
What a gift we have in them. 
When in your life have you been at the well….as Jesus was?  
What people, what situations have caused you in your life to say,
 “I have nothing left to give.”
When, in the past decade….the past year…..
heck, the past month?
When there’s nothing else left to do, what do we turn to? 
Prayer, of course.
As women, we are the vortex of the family crises 
as well as  family celebrations. 
 We’re used to taking the lead on the heavy emotional lifting.
 Just as the women of Jerusalem took the lead,
the Passion...gave the support.


<My youngest, as Jesus, in our parish living stations>

We've each lived challenging seasons.
Looking back do you wonder how you got through?
How many times you've leaned on the Faith
to simply survive, never mind thrive?
Have you had a  New Years Eve or five when you've said, 
"Oh Lord, let this year be better than last...please?
I just can't keep doing this."




Crucifixion art > 

But you can and you do because.....

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
 the Father of compassion who comforts us in all our troubles,
 so that we can comfort those in any trouble. 
~2 Corinthians 1:3-4

We are our wounds.....
those women, without knowing, are our compass.
We move through the days, the years, the sometimes tough-times
and we know it's a gift....this life.
And whatever path we choose.
whatever vocation,  we are affirmed through our faith 
that we "can do all things through Him who strengthens me."
Philippians 4:13



Thank the Lord for the  role models we have in them.

I'm linking to a couple of wonderful hops!
Please visit Allison's  and Laura's homes on the web  for some
Catholic inspiration and  ideas!


And by the way that book I mentioned above?
Best book on the topic, and written by a good friend of mine, too.😉

                                            
Thank you for spending some of your precious time today
here at my home on the web! 

Have you signed up to receive my posts in your email inbox?
   If not, just click here to 
quickly and easily  so we can be in touch regularly!
You might wish to follow on Facebook as well.....

If you are shopping at  amazon and Target
why not consider clicking through my link
In this way, I will receive a small commission on the purchase.....
at no cost to you.
THANK YOU!

Until next time,

~Chris



BTW, I'm offering picture services and customized
photo packages for your blog or business!
< Subscribers receive a deep discount! >