Hello.  I got some really nice encouragement from a couple people at church this morning.  Genuine encouragement, from people I don’t necessarily talk to every week.  The message was something to the effect that I’m making a positive difference in their life by being who I am and doing what I do.

I know I’m special {and I know at least half of you are laughing right now and thinking of a joke about pork}.  I also know that we’re all special.  I hope that you use your talents {which are different for each of us} to make somebody else’s life a little brighter this Christmas season.

There have been some challenging changes on the farm in the past couple months that lead to my family selling our milk cows.  I’ve thought many times how different life would look if Mark, my late husband, was still alive as we’ve endured the challenges.  I accept that he’s gone from our lives in the flesh and blood kind of way.

I think it’s in the hardest times that we really miss people.  This has been a hard time for me…character building, gut checking, good blogging material kind of stuff.  So maybe you’ll hear about some of it this winter.

The preacher talked about letting go this morning, letting go when kids leave the nest, letting go when people leave the path, and letting go when people leave the earth.  I appreciated the message.  I think it hit some people really hard.  So many have so recently lost loved ones or maybe not worked through the feelings of losses long ago.

I noted that burying grief is not a good way to deal with it, because that’s not dealing with it of course.  So maybe you can give yourself a gift this Christmas {which might be a very valuable gift to those around you as well}.  I encourage you to look within yourself and deal with something that you haven’t yet.  The bigger the pain, the harder to overcome sure, but the more challenging the victory when you do!

And an unscientific personal opinion of mine suggests that eating more properly cooked pork is another strategy for self-improvement.  Hey, I was just trying to end on a laugh, this was pretty serious stuff.