Friday, December 28, 2012

They All Have A Name!

This one got to me! I found a tv show called Pitbulls & Parolees on the Animal Channel recently. Because I am into prison ministry and animal rescue, this reality type show has become a regular program in my DVR schedule. It has both aspects of humanity which I am all about. Pitbulls and Parolees is people saving animals, second chances and parolees getting to see what animals suffer "behind bars". The parolees can do something about this sad situation because they are finally free.  I love what Tia does for people and animals by giving both a second chance!

Check it out for yourself

This past weekend I rescued a three pound chiwawa (sp?!) Ha Ha. Just before pulling into my parents home for a two day Christmas celebration, in front of our big Jeep appeared a very tiny dog with a huge (mega huge) rhinestone and aurora borealis encrusted collar. The cute dog was obviously not supposed to be in that road by itself. In horror, before jumping out of the still rolling Jeep I looked up in the sky and there were vultures on the rooftop just beyond this waif.

I crouched down and in my sweetest voice coaxed the baby into my arms. Honestly, I was sure that this was a Christmas gift sent to me from above! She was calm, comfortable in my arms and ready to be snuck into my parents condo. Alas, my parents would not allow her inside and since she had a few very active fleas on her head, we brought her to the Community Lost and Found where after I drilled the two boys behind the counter to make sure she would make it through the nite somewhere safely inside so we could find her owner - and if not, I could buy more time to convince my husband to take her home to our vet to check for a chip.

I checked back in before the end of the day and after hanging at the Lost and Found for an hour, suddenly the owner was found. The biggest blessing was that I got to meet Mercedes' mom and dad (I had already named her December!) They had no idea she had gotten out, had a chip but no id tag and promised after Christmas they would get her an id tag for that huge collar with the bling.

Ah - deep breath I had done my job! It was so fun to bless someone with saving their precious pet. In celebration of Mercedes (December) here is a video with a happy ending.

Save a pet today. 

A New Year's challenge: Get your indoor kitties collars with id even if you don't think their paw pads will ever hit terra firma, volunteer at your local animal shelter, inquire about donating bedding, food, or a loving temporary or permanent home to a pet - - - even if they aren't willing to wear a rhinestone studded collar or have a fancy name like Mercedes!

Happy New Year - oh and smiles are mandatory for viewing this one......

Thursday, December 13, 2012


Finally! I am back to my keyboard, allowing the thoughts to fly onto the page. I had been super duper busy since our move in August. Although I had time while I sat in a temporary apartment until our short sale purchase came through, I just did not "feel" like writing. Writer's block? No, not even that, as I had not attempted to write. I just decided to read instead.

One of the best features of our new home is an in ground pool. I have never owned a pool before. But, in our search for a new home, a pool was the first item on my wish list. I was so specific too. I wanted a saltwater pool, as I did believe the salt would be better for our skin, and easier to maintain.

Boy was I right on the first count but so very wrong on the second!! We inherited a green pool with dead frogs and an unknown frothy substance on the surface. While our short sale close date kept getting pushed back, the previous owner had shut off the pool pump. As a result, the pool looked and smelled like a toxic waste dump.

Pinch a Penny up the street offered to analyze the water and help us get the pool back to good health. However, just before taking on the task, my husband met the neighbor and was delighted to know she took care of pools as a part time business. And so, the battle began of shocking the pool, sucking out the debris and balancing the salt levels. No easy task even for a pro. The previous owner did something mysterious which drastically affected the salt levels.

Three months later, the prognosis is better. We can swim in the pool, but are still draining and adding water because the pool is just still too darn salty. The goal of the perfect number on the pool pump machine eludes us still three months after trying to get to "normal".

And so, as I always do, I thought of God and His Word and what He would say about saltiness. I Googled  'salty scriptures' and found a great site The very first verse got my attention. Matthew 5:13, “You are the salt of the earth, but if salt has lost its taste, how shall its saltiness be restored? It is no longer good for anything except to be thrown out and trampled under people's feet." Yesterday's directive from the pool technician, "You need to drain a foot from the pool again and refill it. There is still too much salt." And my response, "But the salt turns the grass a funny yellow color and I feel bad discoloring the neighbor's front yard." But the pool won out over being neighborly.

This morning I resignedly hooked up the blue rubber hose to the pool drain, dragged it to the end of the driveway and sighed as I watched the salty albeit clear (sigh) water travel down the road to form a (yes, you got it) salty puddle in my neighbor's driveway. Too much salt.

God's Word speaks of having much salt as a good trait and lacking salt problematic. Salt was and still is used as a preservative as well as so much more! I enjoyed watching the above YouTube and learned how to make salty nail art. Great for Christmas and any other glittery event in which I would like to don beautiful nails. 

Fun, yes, but I wanted to know more about what God's Word had to say about salt in regard to my character, my life, and my Christian walk.What type of "balance" of saltiness is "normal" in God's economy? As I pondered this, I allowed myself a bit of a trip back in time...

Having enjoyed many icy winters in New Jersey, I could not forget the big round bucket of salt that my dad would dive into with a shovel just after an icy event. He would scatter the salt on the front porch, stairs and walkway to the car. There was a method to his salting of the ice. He would wait until the sun peeked out just a bit, then those chunky salt pellets would perform magic it seemed. I remember the rug in the hallway would have a new design as the outline of our shoes would drip salty water onto the rug and our shoes would actually "draw" themselves onto the rug.

Those days, the salt was used for safety. It prevented us from a nasty fall. I also remember gargling with saltwater after getting my wisdom teeth out. Used in this way, the salt prevented disease from making its way into the places where teeth had been. 

Today, I don't dare make my hubby pasta without a heavy dose of salt in the water. The pasta would be bland just as potatoes without salt would be - well - blah.

This guy knows a thing or too about salt - and potatoes in the form of fries....
Good, huh? But God impressed upon me as He always does, when I think I am in control, Christina, , "What about the verse after the salt verse???"

Well, he didn't exactly say that, but led me to Matthew 5:14, "You are the light of the world. A city on a hill cannot be hidden."

Yes Lord. Of course. What good is salt if it has lost its flavor? What good is a light if I never turn on the switch? If I never let the glorious glow of my front porch light shine so that others may find me? 

If I do not share the light that God has given me to share with others, then I have wasted my saltiness and my life's purpose has no seasoning and I am well - blah - or like a cold french fry. And nobody wants to be a cold fry. It may be salty, but it has lost its appeal.

My salty experience yesterday with the pool technician had led me into this time today. My pool is drained. I now await the success or failure of the numbers on the pool computer. Too much or too little salt. That is the question. But God's directive to His children (that includes me)  in Matthew 5:13&14, one day my pool will be "normal" and I won't have to test its saltiness or lack thereof, for it will be maintained and kept at a "normal" level on its own.

I now offer a first to all of you. Homework! Yes, I am giving homework to you today. Read all of Matthew 5. And if you rolled your eyes and said no and decided to contact Preposterous above for some free fries, I won't judge you. I will take your disregard for homework with a grain of salt - or possibly go for a lap in my saltwater pool! No worries. Life is full of good choices!!