Monthly Archives: September 2018

A Diamond In a Lump of Coal

black close up coal dark

Photo by Pixabay on

Writer/teacher/writing coach Kristi Holl offers sound advice and lots to think about on her blog, Writing to Encourage ( Following her post, “Conversations Crucial for Creative Success”, I emailed her about lack of support for my writing from people who I thought would be supportive–ie., family members.

Kristi’s reply (reprinted here with permission): “One thing about learning to deal with family members who aren’t supportive or who ridicule: once you learn how to handle it, and forgive it, and let God comfort and support you, and work anyway…then later in your career when you have to deal with stuff like a negative review by someone, it’s not all that hard. Negative reviews from non-family members don’t have the power to hurt you nearly so much. When you do the hard stuff early on, it makes the way easier later.”

To me, her reply was as valuable as if I picked up a lump of coal, and then, as I rubbed my fingers on it, finding it was actually a diamond! I almost missed the “diamond” (the ability to brush off negative reviews) due to the “lump of coal” it was hiding in (negative comments or disbelief from family members). Had Kristi not pointed out the good in the painful circumstance, I would have missed it–and who knows how often I’ll need such perspective.



Photo by Pixabay on

©P. Booher

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Filed under Country Ripples, Writing

Friday Photos–A Visitor and Some Flowers

Rabbit Visitor

Photo Credit: P. Booher

I was surprised this rabbit didn’t run away before I took its picture.

Sunflower blooming out front

Photo Credit: P. Booher

This picture is from last summer, I believe. Not many sunflowers came up from the pack of seeds, but a few did, and gave me their cheery looks.

Kalenchoe in bloom in front yard

Photo Credit: P. Booher

Kalenchoes are showing off their pink blooms here. Kalenchoes are hardy plants, managing to hang on through the winter, and then blooming in late summer. While I enjoy planting flowers, I am thankful for those that come up on their own year after year.

©P. Booher

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The Lure of Worry, the Futility of Worry


lightning in sky at night

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beautiful environment field flora

Photo by Mina-Marie Michell on

“Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” Jesus, Matthew 6:27 (NIV)

I have a problem with worry. In two seconds flat I can worry about something that hadn’t crossed my mind before then. Less than two seconds later I have a tidal wave of worry in my mind. “What do I do if that happens, or if that happens?” or “What if I do this and then that happens? Then what do I do?”

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Filed under Faith Matters, Life Lessons, Tips to Manage Stress

Nature Notes–Chicory–Blue, Beautiful and Tough

Chicory is a beautiful blue wild flower. This fragile-looking plant thrives in rough environments. Chicory grows alongside roads and in gravel driveways–places where I wouldn’t expect anything to grow, let alone anything so delicate looking. Chicory adds beauty and softens the rough places. Any time I see it I smile at this tenacious little flower which defies its harsh surroundings.

One day I brought a couple chicory plants into the house, thinking the light blue color would perfectly accent my blue vase.  I looked at the plants an hour or so later. Surprise! No longer standing tall the plants wilted pitifully in the vase.  Unlike the wild daisies I’ve picked before,  the chicory plants couldn’t handle the “cushy” indoor life. Their visual charm is strictly for the outdoors.

©P. Booher

Resources for pictures and more information:

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The Abby Chronicles–Mean Human! Nice Human!


Here I am, ready to write my story!

Chapter VIII

I was in a jumpy mood today–running around, jumping everywhere (sometimes where I wasn’t wanted). This I can’t understand. After all, I’m Abby. Shouldn’t I be wanted everywhere, and on everything? Hmmm, I guess not, from the reactions I got.

Anyway, the younger human picked me up and took me into the living room, where the familiar basin of water tinged with dishwashing detergent awaited me. The human sat down on the couch and proceeded to comb me with the flea comb, picking the fleas off the comb and putting them in the water. The fleas sank, never to rise again. Although the human was happy to get rid of fleas, I was not. I was uncomfortable. The flea comb pulled my fur, and I wriggled around on the human’s lap. She told me things that were supposed to make me feel better, but they didn’t, and a couple times I jumped off her lap and ran away. She picked me up and took me back over to the couch. Mean Human!!

Finally she got the message and said, “Ok, Abby, I quit with the comb.” She pulled a pet wipe from the package and moved the pet wipe over me, starting with my head. At first I wriggled and squirmed, but then the more she ran the pet wipes over me, the more I relaxed. I began to purr. I even allowed her to run the wipes over my belly and paws. The wipes felt so soothing. Nice Human!

Just as I was almost asleep, she picked me up from her lap and put me on the couch. “I’m done, Abby.” Mean Human!

A caution for any fabulous feline out there thinking of moving in with humans: it takes a lot of patience to do so. Humans are unpredictable, and the minute a cat thinks the house is run for the cat, the humans do something to throw that thought process off. (Of course, we felines don’t let it bother us, and we always manage to set things right.)

©P. Booher




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Filed under humor, The Abby Chronicles