|Siblings: Exhaust Pipe & Sherlotta|
We had a wonderful surprise today, when we got home from church! Frank said "Isn't that Exhaust Pipe?!" And it was! After being missing for 5 days, he was home!
We have no idea where he was. His collar with tag was still on. He showed no sign of injury.
But he was ravenous! He downed 3 bowls of food in a flash.
The chickens have started running over to the porch when they hear the sound of dog food being poured in the metal bowls. Sherlotta did a good job chasing chickens off the porch while Exhaust Pipe ate and ate and ate.
|Sherlotta standing guard while Exhaust Pipe and his Mama, Dixie, eat (note the hens on the rails)|
I met Megan in the early 1990s. We were both working at the Virginia Employment Commission and attending George Mason University. (She was a music major and my major was administration of justice.) We found we had some unique things in common: a love of heavy metal music and Dracula. We also liked Renaissance festivals and historical events. Besides those things, Megan had a love for God which I did not have at the time. I fondly credit her with being one of two people in my life, who's influence lead me to finally accept Christ. (The other person was one of the survivors of the government's massacre of the Branch Davidians in Waco in 1993. But that is another story.)
Megan and I liked to dress up and have historical themed dinners, followed by movies. That was a lot of fun. Here is Megan at our medieval themed dinner. I remember we watched "Braveheart" after eating. :)
|Me (on the left) and Megan|
|Megan - Parliament and Big Ben in the background|
"I read this book several years ago and I still think about it at times and often find myself praying for those involved. The story was riveting, haunting, and educational. I learned a lot about the sex trade industry and how it is truly all around us. I learned about the types of people that get involved and why. Many heartbreaking stories out there. I was thankful this book was not overly graphic. I came away from it feeling I know how to better guard my own children from being accidentally exposed to and sucked into that nightmare world. I urge everyone to read this book and learn these things for themselves. For those already involved in some way - this book offers hope and shows the way out. This book is a story that needed to be written, and it needs to be read by many."
Megan won second place in the 2009 Christian Choice Books Awards for the novel.
|me in Bath, England ( I LOVE all the old architecture in Europe)|
"A retelling of Edith Wharton's classic novel The Age of Innocence, Song from the Ashes explores the struggle with contentment in marriage and the dilemma between striving for personal happiness versus acceptance of God's perfect plan."
I do not usually read Christian fiction, so honestly, I only know the stereotypes of it. I like that Megan writes about "messy" Christians. Meaning she writes about struggles that real Christians have. Though not all Christians are being tormented in a love triangle, as this book's main character Landon is, we all have our own struggles and temptations with sin.
|William Wallace (Edinburgh) - "FREEDOM!!"|
However, since Ella has a part of his heart, his marriage to April is not easy. His struggles with his feelings for Ella and it makes him miserable.
|Me in the classic red phone booth! I wonder if they even still exist (because of cell phone use)|
On a fun note, there is a girl named "Tabitha" in the book mentioned briefly (if you don't know, Tabby's real name is "Tabitha") and there is a pastor named "Frank." There is also a little girl named "Lilly" who is mentioned twice. She is like a little angelic being. :)
I will always be grateful to Megan for including the Carys character in the book. Not just because of her similarity to Lilly, but that she helps spread awareness of what Trisomy 18 is. On the "Author's Note" pages in the back of the book, Megan briefly describes Trisomy 18 and cites my blog for Lilly. :)
|Megan by a sign for "The Ultimate Ghost and Torture Tour" in Edinburgh. This tour was a nighttime walk through the catacombs under the city. We had a bizarre paranormal experience at one point.|
Megan set her story in Kingsport, Tennessee, the town she grew up in. In the week before her book's release, she did a series of blog posts about Kingsport. They were so interesting, especially as I remembered them while reading this story. Frank, Tabby, and I attended Megan's wedding, years ago, in Kingsport. So it was neat when she wrote about places I was familiar with there. Megan's blog, called "Life Before the Hereafter" is at: http://meganwhitsonlee.blogspot.com .
|Hampstead Heath - beautiful open countryside, right in London|
"I count him braver who overcomes his desires than him who conquers his enemies; for the hardest victory is over self." - Aristotle
"The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure. Who can understand it?" - Jeremiah 17:9
|Me at Trafalgar Square in London (goodness - the main thing that shows up are my white hightops! How 1990s ...)|