Monday, 31 May 2010

Had a great weekend. Q and I hiked through the woods, got lost, but finally made it to Ashburton Head, where we sat far above the ocean and had a picnic. For three hours we ate and talked. Then we found our way back to civilization (got lost again), but we weren't worried for eventually you make it to the ocean if you're on an island, right? We came home, had a nap, ate some more and out to a ball game, then home again for more eating and sleep. Sunday, Q spoke in church and I sang a song. She had a great message. Linda and Michel came down to Grand Manan as well, and we ate together at Q's after lunch. It was a fantastic ferry ride back, with the sun and the wind.

After my radio show today, I prepared for my recital and had lunch with Doris. She washed my windows while I talked with her and busied myself with dishes and a pedicure. It's great to have friends who do your work for you. She wouldn't let me help her due to my wrist 'condition.' I will be SO glad to use my hands to full capacity. I did play the piano tonight, however, at my recital. The kids did great -- piano, guitar and singing. And the BEADY Bunch (Beth, Cousin Els, Ann H. and Donnie, a.k.a. my mommy), did a skit for the crowd. They were a hit! You're never too old to act silly, and you're never too old to do a bang-up job of playing the piano! Good job, girls!

Well, I'm really craving a DQ sundae right about now. It's a tradition every recital night. But I'm waiting for Doug who is next door at C & W's playing with trailer lights. Tomorrow night, he's going on an expedition to buy steel in Coldstream (wherever that is), so that he can begin inventing his pull-behind trailer/fuel container for our trip out west next summer. Hurry up Doug, I feel a caramel sundae is awaitin.'

Feels strange to be done teaching. Another strange thing was to be standing in front of parents and students this year conducting a music recital, when last year I was the recipient of a benefit concert at the same place and many of them were there. I am blessed to be alive and well. And very thankful.


Thursday, 27 May 2010

Off to Grand Manan for the weekend to see Q and hubby Morton. I haven't been to GM since October 2008. Looking forward to it. Found out my hemoglobin today is 139 (normal is 120-140). Praise the Lord!

And Dr. T (my family doc) arranged an appointment with OT department at the hospital next week to get a wrist splint made for my left wrist. I need my wrists to be healed so I can play and do everyday things. Would appreciate your prayers.

Wednesday, 26 May 2010

My Last Official Day of Teaching

Long day. Radio station this morning, but the system wasn't working right, so I left and traveled around in my car for awhile looking for someone to play with. Home with my Wednesday gluten-free spinach feta pizza. This is a tradition every Wednesday in my house. A treat for a long afternoon of teaching. Isn't it funny how we reward ourselves with food? Taught from 12:30 til 7 tonight. My end of year recital is Monday, May 31st at 6:30 pm at Nashwaaksis Baptist Church. Drop by == open house and see all these talented kids I teach.

Then Brenda and Gilles Jaillet came by to visit me and Doug. Brenda starts chemo tomorrow morning for breast cancer. She will be going through the same treatment I did, so I wanted to reassure her that she could do it, too. Doris dropped by and we prayed for them as they start this new 'adventure' of chemo.

Last Thursday, I went to Saint John to visit Almira undergoing cancer treatment. Please uphold her in prayer. They are having difficulty giving her chemo. I wish I could be there to hold her hand. We all do. So we hold her up to the Father above. We hold up Brenda as well. I never knew I was going to have a cancer ministry, but I can see it evolving now. Even when I shared my testimony a couple of weeks ago in Minto, I realized it was starting then. God can use anything for good, right?

Tomorrow Nurse Cherry is coming for a visit and a rest, I hope. She has been attending to Almira in the hospital in Saint John and is getting weary.

Tuesday, 25 May 2010

Great Weekend at The Bear

Had a great weekend at Great Bear Campground in Lower Queensbury. Down by the water with our RVs and tents. Three families living together for three days and three nights. Campfires -- many hour campfires, canoe rides, leisurely walks and just plain sittin' around. Playing with grandchildren. Drawing pictures. Playing Scrabble on a picnic table. Falling back over my chair and rolling out onto the road after trying to get away from the fire that Jon was poking at. Now, that was a pretty site -- looked like a fly on its back, and what with my useless wrists of late, I couldn't get up and Doug had to pick me up off the road. I was laughing so hard it was difficult for him to do anything with me, though. He plunked me back in the chair and I sat some more. How often does a person get to just sit? Especially after rolling on the road and bruising your body.

Doug and I took forever getting home last night. A trip of about 40 kms took 4 hours, as we kept stopping every chance we got. Different campgrounds and look-outs. We didn't want to come home. #1 it was too hot in Fredericton, and #2, we didn't want to come back to reality. That's what happens when one is on vacation, right? Hey, Richard P. in The Pas, I met John Thornton at Everett's Campground. He worked with you at Tolco -- small world, isn't it? Amazing. He is a cartographer and works between New Brunswick and out west. We thought it amazing that he knows you and we know you!

Today, I loaded up my sewing machine and drove up to Greenhill Lake Camp to sew curtains for most of the day. The dining room needed a refurbish. Janette was already there waiting for me, and Doris joined us after a bit, ready to sew as well. After a few trial and errors with my sewing machine -- bobbins jamming and the needle eye being invisible to my bifocaled eye, I began the sweat shop process of sewing in the heat of the day. It felt good to sew straight lines -- therapy. Janet White #1 would be happy. She likes it when I sew straight lines. She could have been there, too, but went to a wedding! On a Tuesday morning! E & J's daughter, I believe. While I was there, had a bit of a scare as the doctor's office called Doug and told him they wanted to see me. My heart started pounding, and I went weak at the sewing machine. Stopped those straight lines and called them straightaway. Found out that they just wanted to fill out some tax forms, so doc has to see me. Yet another doc appointment. Whew. Felt strange the rest of the day, though. Fear is a liar!

After teaching three students, we went to the Fredericton Ladies Choir concert at Fredericton High School. Graduated there in '77. Long time ago. Nat & Jon did as well. Felt strange to be there and sit in the cafeteria and theatre -- lot of life has happened since I was there. Good and bad. Life is like that. Must go for a walk with my sweetie and recap the day.

Friday, 21 May 2010

Special Treat

At Bible study this morning, Ann had a brilliant idea for an after-study treat: dip dates in peanut butter, then in coconut. Enjoy! And we did. Mrs. Hvwiggins, especially. She's on sick leave this week but able to come out for study and dates.

Thursday, 20 May 2010

Happy Anniversary

Today is our 32nd wedding anniversary. Last year on our 31st wedding anniversary, we were in the oncology department at the Saint John Regional Hospital. I had a johnny shirt on, and Doug was waiting for me to come out of the treatment room, with my chest all marked up with magic marker, awaiting radiology treatment. Today, on our 32nd anniversary, I am very much alive and traveled to the oncology unit at the same hospital to visit Almira, who is undergoing chemo. I found it very strange to enter the hospital and realize I wasn't going for treatment, but going to administer 'prayer treatment' and encouragement to our dear friend.

We believe in God and we believe in prayer. Prayer works, people. Prayer works. Call out to the Lord of heaven and earth and BELIEVE!

We shall LIVE and NOT die, to declare the works of the LORD!

Max took Doug and I to Phillips Craig & Dean concert at Sunset Church tonight. Linda, Max, Randy, Sandra, Doug & me, Stephen & Janette, Carolyn and Brett, and I think Phenny was hiding somewhere in the crowd as well. Anyone else we know there? Great concert.

A bit overwhelmed from the day and very tired. Almost went to sleep driving from Saint John, and had to stop in Morell Park and have a sleep before I could make it home. Now to have some toast and go to bed.

Happy Anniversary, Doug. It's been another unusual anniversary, but thank God we're alive, by the merciful grace of God.

Tuesday, 18 May 2010

The Real Thing

It's been another busy day. Radio show, a stop at Platinum headquarters to drop of my new devotional for next month's issue, have a new picture taken (new hair colour, you know). Asked to write a column for a new paper for the river valley; will consider this. What would I write about? Hard to say.

CJRI is 5 years old today, so watched people eat cake at the station (I am a gluten-free girl). A stop off at Jed and Granny's to see what's happening there, and believe me, there is a lot. Jed damaged his new truck on Saturday night, so Granny is trying to organize repairs. Poor Granny. I told her she needs to live in the day; that's hard, isn't it? But Jed is sure cute, that's for sure. We're planning a camping trip this weekend, so Doug needs to get their trailer ready for them. He painted our RV white and cleaned it up real pretty tonight.

After visiting Granny (my mom), I came home to eat a sandwich and talk to Nat on the phone (I have spent a lot of time on the phone today it seems). Then, a drive in the country was needed to clear my head. Scooted out the Royal Road and up the Kingsley Road to Burtts Corner. Stopped at Birds Corner Store. Remember in the summer when you were a kid in a Coldstream summer (wherever that is), and you and Cuz Wayne walked down to the corner store, flipped open the chest cooler and took out a nice cool bottle of Coke (in a glass bottle?). Well, that's what I was hoping to find at the store, and lo and behold, there they were -- small 237 ml bottles of Coke in the cooler. It's the REAL THING -- Coke (not really, but it sounds good and felt even better on my throat). I bought two and downed one quickly as I drove through Keswick, savoring every cool swallow on my razor-blade feeling throat (Nurse Cherry also has one of these type throats). Woke up with a sore throat this morning. Doug was home all last week with a cold. So I'm fighting NOT to get it.

Taught music and talked on the phone for a couple of hours, then a walk to debrief with hubby. Now the hockey game. Quite a day. Praying for our friend, Almira, in the Saint John hospital who has lymphoma and starts chemo soon. Pray that her recovery astounds the doctors. And for Brenda Jaillet, still going through treatment.

So many things are happening it's hard to keep up with them. Good and bad, but the Lord is the Lord of them all.

Monday, 17 May 2010

Around the Province in Three Days

Another whirlwind of a weekend. Friday night found me and the girls up in Burtts Corner talking about Living, Laughing and Loving with a bunch of women and singing our hearts out. On Saturday, Doris and I took off in her red van to go to Moncton to surprise Laurie at her graduation from a counseling course. We were there most of the day, but took a side trip to Sussex to try and find Almira before she went for cancer treatment this week. She wasn't home, but back in Saint John, seeing her new grandbaby. A trip to D's sister for a cup of tea, cheese and crackers and some OxiClean to take out the stain in my new capris, and we were off to home again, jiggety jig. I settled in for a long spring nap, but got on the phone again for a long time. So much for rest

Sunday, Doug and went to Campobello for the day to see Jalene and Stefan Matthews. Spent a few hours with Jalene, crying and talking with her in the loss of Baby Hope. Very difficult time for them. Our hearts break for them as they deal with the loss of a precious baby. Please continue to pray for them.

Today I spent some time with Sandra, who just came back from the Holy Land. She and Randy had a wonderful time and planted a tree in our honor, so we are planted in Israel! Cool = I was so excited.

I just finished teaching for the evening. Three more weeks and I'm done the bulk of my students. It's hard to teach inside when it's so nice outside, and I just feel like I want to travel, travel, travel.

Must go call Natalie and hopefully take Mr. Doug out for a walk before bedtime.

Friday, 14 May 2010

Yesterday on the radio, I reported that it was Ascension Day (because it was). Little did I know it, but I, too was going to ascend a hill. Doris and I decided to take a hike up Currie's Mountain, a dormant volcano (glad about that), and have a picnic. As we began the trek, I remarked it was Ascension Day – "Hey!" she retorted, "we are ascending the hill of the Lord!" And an ascension it was – had to stop several times to catch our breath. It is a steep mountain, and we were glad to get to the top and eat our potato salad, salad and fruit. One of the things people do in The Netherlands on Ascension Day is to take a walk, a cycle ride or do household maintenance. We decided to walk and ascend while we walked. Oh, it feels good to hike and eat. Alas, we had to descend the mountain and back into the real work – cooking, cleaning and teaching.

Today I taught Romans again at Bible study, taught the BEADY Bunch piano (although the 'B' is now my secretary and she works upstairs while I teach the EADY Bunch downstairs); jammed a sandwich in my face; took Mrs. Hwiggins home; rushed over town to pick up Carolyn, our webmaster ministry partner; stopped off at Gloria's for a going away party for Barb Beck who is going to Alberta (so long Barb; we love you); and home to get ready for a retreat tonight at Church of Christ in Burtts Corner. My theme? LIVE LAUGH LOVE. Should be quite a time. All are welcome. Well, at least if you're a woman. Want to come? Starts at 7 – free admission. Then we're going to a party at Janette's house at Greenhill Lake. Early Saturday morning may take us somewhere else. Time will tell, but you know I'll probably report it to you.

Happy Friday.

!Roving Reporter Deb

Wednesday, 12 May 2010

My results

Thank you for praying for me today. Dr. Broad told me my white cell count climbed from 3.2 in December to 3.7, almost normal! The other results were not in yet, but that is what she was looking to come 'up.' And it did! Bless God. She did a thorough exam and will see me in August again. I love her...she is wonderful. All the docs that follow me are wonderful.

Please pray for our friend, Almira, who is on our ministry team and she goes to the doc tomorrow morning, and CT scan on Friday. She has been diagnosed with lymphoma and we are praying for her. As well, Brenda Jaillet, who is undergoing treatment as well.

Now to have some fiddleheads that Doris picked and washed and froze for me...lots of green in your diet is good. Life is good.

Live Laugh Love -- getting ready to do a womens' retreat at Burtts Corner on Friday night -- all women are welcome (and Doug). Starts at 7 o'clock -- free admission; goes to 9:30. Come along!

!Happy Deb

Tuesday, 11 May 2010

Three Days, Three Doctors

Monday (yesterday), I went to Dr. Manesi, the plastic surgeon, about my carpal tunnel syndrome in both wrists, and the tenosynovitis (inflammation) in both wrists. Prescription? Splint the Left wrist and rest it as much as possible. Don't play the guitar. Come back in 4 weeks to see if it is better. If not, inject it with steroids. Then, later, do surgery on the right wrist, which will be incapacitated for 4 weeks. We'll see about that. So, I have been splinting the left wrist all day and all night. Have been pretty faithful with splinting it at night, but it drives me nuts in the day time...oh well, at least I have an arm.

Tuesday (today), I went to Dr. Christie, my OB/GYN for my annual exam. Won't talk about that, if you know what I mean. He said everything looks fine.

Wednesday (tomorrow morning), I go to have a blood test at 10:30, then to Dr. Broad at 11:30. Haven't seen her since December. Pray that my blood is beautiful and better than ever before, and that all is WELL. That my white count is normal; that everything is normal. I can rely on my many prayer partners to pray me through. Thank you!

Must put my splint back on. Doug has a terrible cold this week, so trying to stay away from him, as I have to speak and sing at a retreat in Burtts Corner on Friday night.

Just starting to recover from the past ministry-thon we went through!

Monday, 10 May 2010

Deb's Paraphrase of Proverbs 31

I preached yesterday at Morning Gate Church, and started off with my version of the Proverbs 31 Lady. Hope you enjoy...

Deb’s Paraphrase

Who can find a good wife?
For she is worth far more than any diamond ring that a man might choose to shower upon her as a surprise some day

His heart swells up like the Grinch’s when he thinks of her;
So he will have great success in his life.

She always looks out for his best interests and never treats him bad, all the days of her life.

She looks for nice clothing, because she’s worth it,
And sometimes she buys material and whips up a garment in the middle of the night or builds a sundeck just because she can.

She is loves to shop, especially at the Superstore, and stocks her pantry with flair and care;

She rises while it is daylight and makes meals for her husband and family when she has time. She is a friend of Wendy, and takes her family and friends there every chance she gets
She considers a car and buys it to travel the countryside;
From her vast earnings she buys many a book for her library and an occasional lyre or guitar
She lifts weights to make her arms strong and shows off her muscles to her husband and anyone who will look
She knows that her merchandise is good, she bought the extended warranty
She works tirelessly day and night and knows that her work is NEVER done
She extends her hand to the poor and helps the down and outers
She is not afraid of snow, because her husband has a new snowblower and he is not afraid to use it;
She dressed him in a red snowsuit lined with fleece for the occasion
She orders bedspreads from Sears and buys beautiful garments of fine linen and purple because she’s worth it, and purple is IN right now;
Her husband is well known at the community market, where he goes on Saturday to buy a buffalo burger
She makes music and laughter and sells them, and supplies comfort for the people
She is clothed with strength and dignity; she can laugh at the days to come.
She opens her mouth and out comes a quip of wisdom, a dash of instruction
She watches over her house like a Mama Bear and over her baby bear cubs, and does not sleep in the bear lair all day
Her cubs arise and call her “BLESSED MA-MA!”
Her hubby also, and he thanks her and sings her praises everywhere he goes
He says about her, “Many women do noble things, but you, my darling, surpass them all.”
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting,
But a woman who loves the Lord is to be praised
Give her the reward she has earned,
And let her works bring her praise in whatever city she’s in!

The Lost is Found

Thank you, Ava Coakley, for driving my Bible to Fredericton! Really appreciate it. I'll be finding my brain soon...

Sunday, 9 May 2010

Thank you

More about the past few days of singing, speaking and eating.... but I left my Bible in Minto last night at the fundraiser I spoke and sang at, and some kind soul dropped it off here at the Soul Cafe while I was out just now visiting my mother.

Thank you, thank you! Whoever you are. Must go have a rest now before going to lead more music tonight....

!On the Run Deb

Wednesday, 5 May 2010

Day #2

Day #2 with the new hair colour. Still not used to it. Taught piano all afternoon. Many parents didn't notice, but the kids did. They liked it. Made one parent cry when I told her my story about last year. She and her daughter are new to the music studio this year, and she didn't realize what I had been through until she noticed my hair colour change today. Just as I felt like I was looking at a stranger in the mirror the past few months, now I feel like I'm looking at another stranger. Who am I? Oh, someday I'll figure it out.

Went for a long walk tonight up the walking trail; visited with Doug's mom. She is very lonely. We feel sorry for her. What to do? It must be awful to lose your mate. I feel for all of you who have lost your loved one. Thinking of Janet White #1 right now and how she must feel after two years without Duane. Trying to get hold of Janet and have left her numerous messages. She must be in some foreign country again. Hope she calls me soon. Perhaps one of the 'chickens' can tell me where she is. (Only the chickens know who they are). I have so many code words in the blog that I pity the poor person who comes into reading it 'cold.'

Well, this coming weekend is going to be busy, busy, busy. Starts tomorrow morning with a trip to Samaria House in Sheffield (New Brunswick, not England). In the evening we are doing the music/worship for a healing conference at St Margaret's Anglican Church in Skyline Acres. We also do this on Friday night and Sunday night. Saturday night I'll be in Minto (Minto Baptist Church) sharing my story and singing a tune or two. Sunday morning you can find us at Morning Gate Church (our home base), where I will be leading music with some friends (Max is helping as well), and preaching the sermon as well. And since it's Mother's Day and since I'm a mother and all....Hope the congregation recognizes me -- they 've seen me go from black to bald to silver/black to this. I'm like a chameleon, I think. Change with the seasons. Isn't it great that we have seasons in life?

(Regarding the morning service: Oh, and Laurie on our team will be doing an interpretative dance in the service as well. Should be quite the service).

Then out to lunch perhaps, and back to do music Sunday evening at St Margaret's Church. I told our son that we were too busy to see him on Mother's Day and that we'd have to celebrate it another day.

Hey, Nat -- coming home for Mother's Day? Just kidding.

Please pray for all of our team as we go through the weekend.

Next week I have three doctors' appointments: Monday a plastic surgeon; Tuesday a ob/gyn doc; Wednesday is back to Dr. Broad and a blood test; six month check-up. Would appreciate your prayers.

Pray also for Almira on our team who was just diagnosed with lymphoma the other day. She is awaiting treatment options. It never rains but it pours, it seems. She is at peace, but of course, not excited about this! I feel for her and for Brenda Jaillet, who is a blog reader and friend, who is also going through treatment for breast cancer at this time. And one of my student's mothers, Sonia (who I asked for prayer a few weeks ago), undergoing her third chemo treatment. Wow. So much. We really need to rest in God's care and provision and love for us.



Tuesday, 4 May 2010


I forgot to mention that Mrs. Hwiggins (my new secretary) was here this afternoon. Had her working on a songbook upstairs in the office. My mother, the workhorse, was here cleaning the spare bedroom for company this weekend, putting away my clothes from the Bahama trip, ironing and vacuuming. I was downstairs doing paperwork (actually outside at the table on the verandah). I have the best friends in the world. So many people have come to support us over this past couple of years that it is unbelievable -- neighbors like Cousin Charlotte and Janet White #2, Matthew, and friends from far and wide.

Thank you thank you thank you

!Murphy Brown


Today, I did it. I got my hair done. My long time hairdresser and I came up with a colour. Warm brown. Quite a change from the silvery grey/black I've had since last September. I've been thinking about it for quite some time now, but everyone has been telling me, "Don't get your hair coloured! We like it that way." Some days I liked it, and other days I didn't. It reminded me of what I've been through, I think, more than anything. And perhaps I wanted to cover that part of my anatomy up with a bit of colour. Since I can't cover the removal of a body part, I could do the next best thing. I don't know whether you really get used to losing part of your body. I haven't yet, but perhaps someday I will not even notice. And the disability it creates. But, by the grace of God, I'm still standin', right?

After Sandy (my hairdresser) washed that grey right out of my hair, I sat in the chair for a few minutes, afraid to look in the mirror. I got up out of the rinse chair and sat in the stylist chair and looked at myself in the mirror. Immediately, I began to weep as I saw myself, and realized again what I've been through. I was taken aback by the emotion, and so were the hairdressers in the shop, I think. They comforted me and told me I looked great. I never knew how much 'value' a woman attaches to her 'crowning glory.' Well, I guess I have been realizing it, ever since January 2009, when I first lost my hair. And now I have this thick mass of hair back on my head, bless the Lord. And hair on my body again. I bless God for hair. Even leg hair -- I love it!

It's almost 9 o'clock and Matthew is playing the drums while I'm writing this (Matt is my guitar student/neighbour/friend). I'm waiting for Doug to come home to see my hair. He was in the yard a few minutes ago, and I went out to greet him with a quilt on my head. I wanted just the right moment for him to see my new 'do.' Matt just took a picture of my new hair, which will be posted to the blog once we find the cord. For now, this is my story...


Monday, 3 May 2010

At the Radio Station

Hi -- I've never done THIS before -- blogged while at the radio station (CJRI). Are you listening out there? Just talked about the weather being so balmy, and playing "Unclouded Day" by Christlike Band. Before that, "I Hope You Dance," by Lee Ann Womack. I believe little HOPE is in heaven, and being held by her Creator. Our prayers are with the Matthews family of Campobello. If you would like their address to send them a sympathy card, please email me at, and I will send it along to you.

Back to the 'show.'

!Radio Bear

Saturday, 1 May 2010

Baby Hope

I just found out that Baby Hope died this week. Pray for Jalene & Stefan and family as they mourn this precious life. Our prayers are with you guys...