Monday, December 22, 2008

Daddy's tribute

First of all let say that I am deeply honored that MercyMe allowed me to use their words when I was unable to reach inside to find my own. However, last night, around 3 AM God woke me up with this on my mind. I have to repent for not having a pen/paper around, so not all of it is here. This is only what I was able to capture after note pad opened up... This is what was read today at my daddy's funeral service. The honor guard was there for the 21 gun salute & played taps for him making it an altogether lovely service, fitting for a man who served his country, his family and his God with all he had until his last breath.

As you saw into heaven
and your praise began to rise
I felt so humbled and honored
to be at your side.
As God drew close to draw you near
You raised your hands in praise
As Hallelujah filled the air.
The legacy left by your good name
Is a blessing beyond all wealth or fame.
You knew how to love and live in His grace
You walked in His favor and His blessing
Always seeking His face.
In my heart you'll always be here
Your words will always resound in my ears
"I love you princess" you would say
And I've never doubted it- not even today
If you could come back
But for one brief hour
I know your words to me would be
"Hold on to Jesus, baby."
To say I'll miss you doesn't even reflect
The emotions I'm trying to keep in check
Even though I am sad that you are gone.
I love you daddy, but I'll see you again
When its finally my turn to come home
And join you again.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Goodbye Daddy

On Thursday daddy went on his journey to heaven. Sometimes His breath of life is our last. There were moments sitting at his bedside when daddy would begin to sing. Words muffled, melody fading in and out but never the less a beautiful song of praise as I believe he was seeing into heaven. The last distinguishable words he uttered was when he raised his hands and said Hallelujah! Glory to God.

I can not even begin to think of a more beautiful way to pass from this journey to the next than praising the God of Glory. I am so much like him, and one way is my love for singing (constantly lol) I pray that when my day comes, I too raise my hands in praise and glory and honor to the creator of this universe, the lover of my soul.

Good bye for now daddy. I hope your still singing when I get there! I know that you've always loved the things that I write, but right now I can't wrap my mind around a goodbye letter to you, so if you don't mind I'm going to let MercyMe say it for me.

Bring the Rain MercyMe/ Coming up To Breathe/2006
I can count a million times
People asking me how I

Can praise You with all that I’ve gone through

The question just amazes me
Can circumstances possibly

Change who I forever am in You

Maybe since my life was changed

Long before these rainy days

It’s never really ever crossed my mind

To turn my back on you oh Lord

My only shelter from the storms

But instead I draw closer through these times

So I pray

Bring me joy, bring me peace

Bring the chance to be free

Bring me anything that brings You glory

And I know there’ll be days
When this life brings me pain

But if that’s what it takes to praise You

Jesus Bring the Rain

I am Yours regardless of

The clouds that may loom above

Because You are much greater than my pain

You who made a way for me

By suffering Your destiny

So tell me what’s a little rain

So I pray
Bring me joy, bring me peace

Bring the chance to be free

Bring me anything that brings You glory

And I know there’ll be days

When this life brings me pain

But if that’s what it takes to praise You

Jesus Bring the Rain

I'm forever singing
Holy, Holy, Holy

Holy, Holy, Holy
Is the Lord God Almighty

Is the Lord God Almighty

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Third Day on the third Day

As I laid in bed this morning, not wanting to start the day just yet, I spent a couple of moments staring at my hands. Remember the funny little thing we used to do as kids where we locked our fingers together and said, "Here is the church, here is the steeple, open the doors and there's all the people."

For some strange reason that came to mind this cold morning as I tried to nestle in for a few moments of sleep. Using my hand to grasp the covers close I thought how cool it is that when we curl our hand all of our fingers are the same length. Yet when we stretch out our hands they are different lengths. So if we didn't smash our fingers together into the "church" but rather simply bowed down, we'd all be equal.

Christmas is here. Tragedies abound. Grace, Peace, Love, Hope and Joy abound too! I'm thankful that God can show us his glory and mercy today and everyday, in this season and in all of the seasons of our lives.

I will be packing up the computer this Saturday and won't be connected again for a little while. (Thank you Toshiba for not delivering my lap top in time to prevent the gap! *sarcasm duly noted?* ) Twitter will remain turned on to my phone, however I can not follow all of you in return. If I appear to be ignoring you... please forgive me!

Have yourself a merry Christmas!!

Monday, December 01, 2008

Renee is the best surgical tech ever!!!

If anyone wants to hire her and pay her more-money-than-a-tech-should make, just call me and I'll hook you guys up.

OK Renee, happy?

This is my last week working at TOPS surgical in Houston. I will be sad to go. I am glad that I get to go home to visit with the family for most of December and the Christmas holiday season.

AMN/ Preferred has finally gotten all of my payroll issues worked out. I can now testify that they have made good on my pay. Its almost scary to change companies right now. What if I start over with a new company and I have to start over with the same problems.

From all of the message boards that I've been keeping up with, all of the travel companies have these same problems. Once you know how to cover yourself, understand all the guidelines, deadlines and rules then you are set.

At this point I'm not sure that they even want to keep me on! LOL. I guess I can be a little "wordy" at times. Although, when communicating face to face, I am respectful and polite. Who knows where everything stands at this point.

Daddy is in a hospice hospital now. I'm not sure when he is going to be transferred to the house. I know Mom is looking forward to having me home when he makes the transfer. This will be one of those times when my home health care experience is handy.

My Dawgs lost to Ga.Tech. Texas Tech is being shut out from the BCS National Championship game... The Jags are currently losing to the Houston Texans. EVERYTHING on the sports front pretty much sucks for me! I wonder if UGA is even gonna get a bowl game this year :-( *Sigh* OH well... next year is only a couple of weeks away ;-)

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Some Updates on my travel assignment with AMN Healthcare

If you are just joining my blog-o-thon regarding my wonderful new job as a travel nurse, please start here to read from the beginning to the current.

Now I have Craig helping Nick to work through my issues to get this resolved. On the phone, everyone sounds so nice, and appears as though they honestly want to help get this resolved.

However I got an email from Amy, after being told that my insurance forms with proof that they were faxed in the first 30days, were received and things were "taken care of." The email reads:

Hi Janet,

I have received your insurance enrollment form. However, at this time you are not able to enroll as you are past your eligibility period. All enrollment forms must be turned in within 30 days of your assignment start date and we are unable to accept late forms.

Please let me know if you have any questions!

I want to scream!!

Moving on....

I turned in a time card that had the correct hours listed in the right column and they all matched the column at the bottom. However, when I entered them individually I had a number wrong. Yes they went with the one wrong number and not the other 3 correct ones. Now I have to go back and re-do my time card for this week. I corrected it and turn it in but I need my OR manager to refill out and sign the corrected form. She wasn't happy Monday when I had her re-do the form from week one that Craig said they never received. She sighed, reached into a drawer, and pulled out the already completed and turned in form.

Speaking of time cards. The facility that I'm working out is aghast that I have to go through and fill out the "call off" form each week, and then still not get paid correctly. They have agreed that I can stay by myself every evening just to watch the time pass to reach 8 hours everyday to avoid the hassle.

I have not discussed with them yet the fact that IF I don't get the full 80 hours, and I don't fill out the "call off" form...then I OWE THE COMPANY I WORK FOR $8 an hour for every hour short.

So, follow me here, if I work 30 hours and don't fill out the form properly, get my double signatures and then fax it off to a different number than the number that I fax my time cards too, I will owe $8 an hour for the additional 10 hours that I'm not getting paid for.

I'll let that sink in. Not only am I not getting paid... I'll owe money not to work.

I'm still in shock and disbelief that I negotiated days off into my contract. Prior to being hired, during the initial interview, at Nick's encouragement of full disclosure, I requested 3 days off in October. All were in agreement. Then I get this lovely email:

Thank you for traveling with Preferred Healthcare Staffing. In an effort to keep you informed of your paycheck status and funds, we want to inform you that there will be an unearned housing benefit deduction of $182.00 from your next paycheck. As disclosed in your Professional Services Agreement, the deduction for the unearned housing benefit is calculated based on the Minimum Hours in your contract: 80 hours required each pay period, with 22.75 missed hours deducted from your next paycheck.

This is for the "vacation" days everyone agreed upon prior to the start of the contract. But what did I honestly expect, full disclosure? That I could just take days off without getting paid and not owe somebody?

I think a portion of my whole "misunderstanding" is that prior to this job, I worked in a position that was salaried, with benefits. Part of my benefits were vacation days. I was allowed so many hours per pay cycle that I could save and use later. I had the understanding that I was not going to accrue those days anymore. But coming from a background of being salaried, I didn't expect "guaranteed work week" to be much different. Paid for 40 hours a week. Not, paid for 40 hours a week if I get a separate form faxed to a different number signed by me and my supervisor.

I'm going to request my travel assignment to verify for me if they are paying AMN Healthcare dba Preferred Healthcare Staffing for 40 hours of work a week. Or are they paying a different amount each week based on hours actually worked.

I'm just curious if THEY are getting guaranteed pay, paid correctly each pay cycle, regardless of MY actual work hours!!

AGAIN if you are a travel health care professional, either RN, ST, PT, or CRNA. I'd love to hear YOUR stories. Are all agencies the same? Have YOU gone through anything like this before? Any advice for future travel?

Monday, November 03, 2008

Third Day on the third day

I have never finished my Texas trio Music Builds reviews... San Antonio is the only one left to go...

I've know for years that the last will be first and the first will be last but... Trying to beat the Houston show I knew was going to be a hard thing to accomplish. To make matters worse my seats were in Row M, going against the "If we ain't front row we don't go" Gomer motto. For Jars Of Clay, I knew the crowd weren't going to be in their seats yet so I did snag an empty front row seat for that. Chance and I left to go stand in the meet & greet line for Jars but did not make it to the front before the band was whisked away. We missed most of Robert Randolphs set in an effort to rehydrate before taking our place in the back of the front section for Switchfoot. Everything I've ever heard about the acoustics being better from the back, and the view of the entire stage & crowd response jargon was TOTALLY DISPROVED by these seats. My camera was dead, and I really didn't want pictures from back there anyway.

After the "Friends of the Foot" took off for their meet & greet I snagged a second row seat. One "legal" seat that was to belong to Tim, and 3 illegal-empty-seats that did have very young energetic kids. I will never understand why people come to a show (late at that) holding second row seats and then want to SIT DOWN for a show, but that is what happened~ half way through Third Day's set. (They also picked a slow song when everyone is praising to try and get to their seats... if anything else was moving on that song...they totally distracted it) I always wonder about the arms-crossed-sitting-people too. I wondered why they even came to the show. Then I decided to just praise anyway. They decided to remain seated.

After the show I got to meet some more Gomers who I had talked to, but never met face-to-face. Very lovely people! If it weren't for meeting them I'd probably list this as one of my least favorite Third Day shows.

I'm looking forward to the fall tour dates because NEEDTOBREATHE is our on tour with Third Day. My "Dream Line-Up" would be: DecembeRadio, NeedToBreathe, and Third Day.... ahhhhhh two out of three ain't bad!!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

DAY TWO: HOUSTON TEXAS/ The Music Re-Builds Tour

The original venue was the Cynthia Woods amphitheater. All of the MBT shows were set in outdoor arena type venues. Due to Hurricane IKE, there was a last minute venue change. There were a lot of last minute changes making this show one of the special evenings of the tour. First, instead of rising money for Habit for Humanity, ALL proceeds for this show went to rebuilding the Houston/Galveston area. This show was broadcast live on KSBJ and filmed for later TV viewing audience. RED had turned things down a bit. My seats for this show were front row, and since it was indoor arena the seats were closer to the stage than the ones for Dallas.

I was able to get some great photos of all of the bands for this night! This is a picture of Stephen Mason from Jars of Clay.

During the show Tai Anderson began to give his, bass-player-with-a-mic routine that he starts off with, “Earlier this year we had the chance to tour Iraq.” Only tonight it too was different. No sooner had he gotten the words out, he was given (what the band later has stated as) the longest standing ovation of the tour! It was very moving, to witness the gratitude of the crowd towards the men and women of the armed services, no matter what side of the election you are on.

This show had the largest amount of Gomers than any other on the entire tour. Gomers are THE main reason I attend so many Third Day shows each year. As a member of the Third Day “Wired” club, I got backstage passes for the meet & greet. As it turns out it was more about meeting up with fellow Gomers than spending time with the band members. Occasionally they would interject into our conversations, as if we would/could leave them out!

Again I ended up being one of the first to get to the venue, and one of the last to leave. (Hence the Gomer motto: Come early, stay late & WEAR ORANGE!) Of all three days of living-like-a-rock-star this was my favorite! Seeing old friends makes for time well spent! I got to sleep in my own bed this evening for another whopping 4 hours then…Off to San Antonio!!!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Friday, October 24, 2008

Safe to Land by Jars of Clay~ Lyrics

I have a tracker that compiles stats for me from this blog. The number one search engine request that directs people to this blog, after the two years or so that I've been up is: Safe to Land by Jars of Clay~ Lyrics

Let me say that I have interviewed Jars Of Clay. And I have written a review of their new EP CLOSER. However I am in no way affiliated with the band, their management, promotion team (even though I'd love to do that for a living!).

This is what I believe the lyrics to Safe to Land are (feel free to leave me a comment if you feel as though I have gotten any of them incorrect and I will edit) :

Getting tired from all this circling
Not much grace left on a broken wing
I feel the wind trying to push me down
It happens every time I get to town

I search for shelter near the mines we swept
I guess forgiveness hasn’t happened yet
There are no words that I can say to you
That turn this careless sky from black to blue
So I’m asking you is it safe? Is it safe to land?
‘Cuz I’m not going far on an empty heart
Is it safe? Is it safe to land? It’s the long fall back to earth is the hardest part

I’m in no weather for apologies
I need your runway lights to burn for me
And if you say that I can come around
I’ll love you right, yea I won’t let you down, I won’t let you down

‘Cuz I’m coming home, if these wheels touch down
I’m coming home I’m waking you up in the middle of the night I’m not giving up
I’m gonna stay ‘til we make it work
We’re not going down even if it gets worse
We’ll work it out. Yeah we’ll work it out.
I need light to guide me in
Oh, Yeah is it safe?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Music Builds Day one...

All and all we’re just another brick in the wall…

The Music Builds Tour has rolled across America laying the foundation & building awareness for Habit for Humanity. I joined the “tour” with a handful of my favorite people, the Third Day Gomers for what we dubbed the “Texas Trio.”

They say everything’s bigger in Texas. Not sure if that’s entirely true, but having seen the MBT in Nashville in April I can yesly tell you that Texas was a rocking set of shows.

Late planes and Dallas traffic almost foiled the pre-show kick off party for us. But in true Gomer style we focused on what was the most important thing to us, each other. Yes there was this little thing called a concert but what was most important was that we were seeing each other for the first time in YEARS. For some it hadn’t been that long, for others it was a first “in person” meeting. (We live together online at I love this community of people. There is nothing that we wouldn’t do for each other… *single tear drop*… OK in all seriousness, we always make fun when we get together.

For the concert? Oh yeah, the concert. My seats started off on row 2 stage left. RED was too loud. There is no other way to describe them. I like their music on CD. But live? My ears were literally hurting, and I had ear plugs in. WAY TOO LOUD RED. (and NO I’m NOT TOO OLD!) Jars of Clay is hit-or-miss with the audience response. Their stage show is very good. I love the all white outfits. It was strange to see how the crowd in one city sat with arms folded while the next city rocked…the set/delivery was exactly the same. One of those things that make you go, hummm. Switchfoot delivered a great show. Its always a crowd pleaser when Jon Forman jumps off the stage and runs through the crowd. Security nightmare I’m sure, but good theatrics. Due to the sound ordinances each band cut their show a little shorter so we didn’t get the same set each night. By the time Third Day took the stage, the “Friends of the Foot” had cleared out to go to their meet & greet with the band so I was able to get front row. Its always fun to have Third Day say something about their psycho fans (as Mac has so lovingly dubbed us). After a short but rocking set we all headed back stage for some face time with the guys. It was nice to see the wives there interacting with the fans as well. They’re always a treat. After the show back out to eat with the Gomers. Surprisingly not at Waffle House either! Then off to the hotel for the first night of 4 hours of sleep. God its great to live like a rock star!!!

Love done right

Every once in a while you meet, "When love got it right." Not too often. Mostly you hear complaints of everything bad. Enough ammunition to keep me single. Maybe you just know someone too well and thats why you endure all the "dirt" and none of the praise in their relationship. Some of my friends never say anything good or bad about their spouse...makes ya wonder.

I got a chance recently to meet a good "love story" couple. You can follow her here.

Nice to meet you Stephanie!! :)

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

If the World could vote

I got an email today with a world map asking the question, if the world could vote, who would the next President of the United States be.

You can click the link and check it out for yourself.

Don't forget to VOTE!!!

Jars of Clay MBT interview

I originally submitted this to the site I write for as a new article, prior to the end of the Music Builds Tour. However it never made it to "print" so I edited it as a past tense version. Since they've never posted it, I'm going to.

This interview was recorded at Cypress Gardens Florida earlier in the Summer. Enjoy!

I heard Bono proclaim that, “I don’t believe that Rock-n-Roll can really change the world.” The Music Builds Tour rolled across America this year in hopes that Rock-n-Roll could really change one person, one place at a time. Hoping that if they can draw attention to cause of Habitat for Humanity, then maybe they can raise the level of awareness needed to make a difference in someone’s life. And that my friends would begin to change the world.

This tour featured 3 Redlight managed bands: Third Day, Switchfoot, and Robert Randolph and the Family band, along with the independent Jars of Clay and RED.

I recently sat down with Jars of Clay to discuss their involvement in the Music Builds Tour. What I found was not what I expected. Who knew that Jars of Clay were such funny guys? When asked, “How did you guys get involved with this tour?” Matt Odmark chimes in with, “Strategery.”

“We’re not even sure if we’re really on the tour” adds Stephen Mason. Laughter is the main recording of this whole interview.

When this tour was first announced, and the details began to become hot topics on the various message boards and forums for the bands, there was a cry of outrageous ticket prices, with a minimal amount donated back to Habitat for Humanity. Dan Haseltine from Jars of Clay offered a very eloquent rebuttal on the Jars of Clay message boards. “I suppose the point is not that $1 per ticket is the end of the giving opportunities for Habitat during the tour, it is just one of the ways Habitat will raise funds. A tour like this has layers, just as most do. The tour is very high profile, so that will give Habitat a bit of exposure. It is also just a great line-up.”

I read on your blog that your in the studio working on a new CD. Do you have a release date for that?

“We have an EP called CLOSER” Charlie Lowell
Closer to being done with the CD?

“Closer than a couple of months ago!” Charlie

“For the [CD] we’re probably looking at March of ’09. But the EP is going to have a few sneak peeks on it. You’ll also be able to digitally get the EP. So it will only be available on the tour or digitally online. So those not lucky enough to make it out to the Music Builds [Tour] you can still pick it up on iTunes or wherever you go[online].” Matt

By now Jars of Clay has pretty much toured America . Is there any city that you’re excited about playing again, or excited about going back to?

“ Chicago ” Stephen

“ Des Moines ” Matt

“We’re not in Des Moines ! Oklahoma City guys!” Charlie

Oklahoma City was on my list until the dates changed. Now I’m just doing the Texas Trio.

“Fair enough” Charlie

Being a recent Houston transplant, I was hoping that Texas would have been one of the “favorite” hot spots.

Stephen, the jester I’m assuming, quips, “Well we love our Texas . We love our Texas food. We love our Texas people. We love our Walker Texas Ranger.” (Laughter rolls again like thunder) “We didn’t realize how many warehouses with empty boxes there were in Texas!”

“That he can just run in and blow up” Charlie

“Ne'er-do-wellers living there.” Matt

“Shenanigans!” Charlie

More laughter rolls out of the tent holding the interview. The tour manager is now popping over to see what is going on in this interview. Sanity has been misplaced, replaced by sheer humor accompanied with laughter. Sensing a loss of control over the interview process, I asked one last question. “Have you ever sat in these interviews and wished that [the interviewer] would ask you a particular question and they never do? If so what would that question be?”

“No, I’m usually up for whatever you find interesting. Then I try to bend that toward what I’m interested in!” Stephen

“There’s the trick.” Matt

“The secret of the interviewee” Charlie

Matt adds, “I’ve sat in some interviews and wished someone would say, hey man you need $20?” (Roar of laughter)

So if you ever see Matt, ask him if he wants $20, or you can just donate it to Blood Water Mission on behalf of Jars of Clay.

Jars previewed some of their new music from the EP CLOSER with good crowd response. You can pick up the new EP online from , or from iTunes.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Preferred Healthcare Staffing/ American Mobil Nursing

The sole intent of this blog post is that I pray it comes up to for anyone doing a google search for Travel Nursing, American Mobil Nursing or Preferred Healthcare Staffing.

For my very first travel nursing assignment, I chose Preferred Healthcare Staffing. I drove out to Houston Texas on September 4th to start my new assignment on September 8th with TOPS Surgical Hospital. I was interviewed over the phone by both Preferred Healthcare Staffing. and TOPS for a position as an 11-7 circulating RN in the operating room.

On my first day as I was being introduced to everyone, my OR manager said, "This is Janet, she will be doing the 12-8 shift." I didn't correct her but did come home, check my contract and called my recruiter, Nick. Nick assures me that he had no idea the hours were to be 12-8 but asked me to be flexible for now. I agreed. One hour either way wasn't that big of a deal, right?

As the first week progressed, IKE headed for Houston. I was the "last man standing" as it were, in the OR. I did the last case of the evening, I stayed later than the "staff" of the OR did, to secure the equipment used during my case. The rest of the equipment had already been taken care of. We faxed in my time card for the first week without the last shift's hours since we had to cover and unplug the fax machine prior to leaving for the day. The OR manager stated that it wouldn't matter because I was guaranteed my time anyway, right? It was for 19.5 hours.

The Monday and Tuesday after IKE the OR was damaged and we were told not to come to work. There was no power or water. The staff had a meeting and it was determined that they were going to be paid for the three days that the facility was closed. For the remainder of the week we were told to come in at 9:30 to re-sterilize the equipment, and clean up the OR. Lunch was provided because there was still no power. We were working on back up generator. We worked a grand total of 20hrs that week cleaning. On Thursday of that week I got my first pay check. And it was for 19.5 hours. NOT the 40hrs guaranteed that I was supposed to get.

Upon calling into payroll I was informed that this facility was not a guaranteed pay week facility. I protested. I have a contract. It says guaranteed hours! They agree. Yes it is guaranteed. We're sorry. "Since its so late today we'll wire you the money on Friday." Friday comes and goes and still no wire. I called back. "OH I see where it was to be wired. But since its so late today, we'll wire you the money on Monday." Monday comes and I get a wire for 8hrs of work. Wait. 8+19.5 does not equal 40!

Payroll explains that I'm confused about the wording of my contract. Forget that my recruiter, Nick, had told me on the phone, "Your guaranteed 40hours no matter how many you work." And my OR manager had said, "Your guaranteed 40hours no matter what, right?" Payroll says that I'm to be paid for 40hours IF the facility cancels me MORE than 24 hours in a pay week. Forget that the contract says "24 hours per assignment, which are cancelled by the Facility and cannot be made up during the pay cycle."

So basically, I've been hired to do a shift that only gets around 30-35 hours of work every week. The OR schedule is finished most days by 6pm. So I work 6-7hours a day. If I try to break the contract, I owe them $8hr for the rest of the contracted 13 weeks. (I have 10 weeks left or $3200) I've packed up, moved 900 miles from home, to work part time.

When I spoke with payroll last night the voice on the other end of the phone made the comment, "Its a common mis perception regarding the guaranteed work week." Indicating to me that out there somewhere is another RN who thought, was mislead to believe that she/he was getting paid for 40 hours a week on this new exciting career with American Mobil Nursing or Preferred Healthcare Staffing.

I would pay to have this blog post be in the top google searches if it saved someone else from American Mobil Nursing or Preferred Healthcare Staffing.

I'd love to hear from you if you too have been mislead by American Mobil Nursing or Preferred Healthcare Staffing.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

9/11,12,13,14 Houston Texas- IKE

Finishing up the last case of the day on 9/11 there was an uncertainty in the air of Houston, TX.

A waiting. An anticipation. An anxiety. People were unsure about future plans. To stay or evacuate. All eyes, all ears, all channels tuned to find the latest news, information... hope. What would the storm bring? What should we expect? What do we do now?

Then came IKE.

Friday found all who were uncertain before scrambling for plans now. To evacuate or not a mute point. It was clear IKE was here & it was too late to change coarse now.

I am one who was among the 3million urged to "shelter in place." Not close enough to run from the waves, told to hide from the wind.

I am a native Floridian. Not a stranger to hurricanes. I moved to Houston one week before. Just after tropical storm Fay brushed by Jacksonville. Blowing down trees, dumping rain. I worked through that storm. Home care never stops.

Here in Houston, I'm back working in the operating room where its a safer feeling for me. I've worked in an OR, for the most part, since 1992.

I packed up my son and piled in with my cousin Angie to 'hunker down' for the storm. While her home in Katy was technically further South, and therefore closer to the areas that would presumably be affected, it was a home and not an apartment building. There is no place like home. No feeling like being with loved ones.

Friday night was long. We stayed up. Eyes glued to the T.V. Where was IKE? What category? Where was the eye going to land? And where was Jim Cantore? [He's my favorite meteorologists but you never want to be in a storm & hear he's in your neighborhood, because that means the worst is headed to you!]

Katy didn't get the break from the passage of the 'eye.' It was non stop. We sat, napped, stared, twitterd & prayed through the whole storm.

Here's a log of some of my actual time storm tweets:
* getting the first of tropical force winds here in Katy 11:40 PM September 12, 2008
* @dannylondon is it raining in Seattle? 12:15 AM September 13, 2008
* @sunnieM getting some winds&rains but still a long way2go before the eye&the bad side hits us (should b in AM) 12:48 AM September 13, 2008
* praying for daylight.... 01:09 AM September 13, 2008
* power surging off&on again... 01:36 AM September 13, 2008
* power just went out.... I think I'm gonna try &get some sleep 03:10 AM September 13, 2008
* woke up this AM the winds haven't stopped..the 'eye' isn't going 2 cross us 2 give us a 'break' 06:21 AM September 13, 2008
* we're really taking a beating the house is holding up no tree damage to Angie's house or any ones car no flooding turning phone back off/love yall 06:27 AM September 13, 2008
* BTW we can't get calls in/out but we can get/send text msg (Aunt Alice/Angie&I are sleeping/praying in intervals little scared but were gonna be OK 06:39 AM September 13, 2008
* if u r watching flooding breaks in Addicks/Bear Creek/ Copper Field would be our "area" 06:41 AM September 13, 2008
* funny how at times like these songs float through your prayers... I will Praise You in THIS Storm!! 08:08 AM September 13, 2008
* getting tired from all this circling...not much grace left on a broken wing......(thanks JARS great song!) 09:04 AM September 13, 2008
* still raining here in Katy 02:46 PM September 13, 2008
* the forecaster was right today... windy & rainy here in Houston:) 03:17 PM September 13, 2008
* I know it seams a little trivial now but we have no power so all we have is local news on radio/IKE fatigue/would love some updates 4 UGA game 05:29 PM September 13, 2008
* @corrine_mamag yup! @marklee3d & @barihouse helped relieve some IKE fatigue! nothing on radio/tv but constant damage updates/nothing new 06:35 PM September 13, 2008
* @marklee3d that's cooler than the window ac unit we've gt hooked up 2 the generator 02:47 AM September 14, 2008
* I hate how I have no contact w/ outside world then my phone all-of-a-sudden acts like its having a seizure as I get a plethora of tweets at once! 02:53 AM September 14, 2008
* God your grace is enough 4Houston& 4me. I know that nothing but the will of God can come4 us who choose You&Your will4 our lives. 03:04 AM September 14, 2008
* So right now as an act of my will I choose2 praise You! In the storm/thru the storm/in spite of the storm because U R still God & U still reign! 03:07 AM September 14, 2008
* Its raining n Houston again BUT the anchor holds tho the ship is battered&the sails r torn,I have fallen on my knees as I face the raging c 03:28 AM September 14, 2008
* the anchor holds in spite of the storm! (Rich Mullens?) 03:30 AM September 14, 2008
* network still unavailable for wireless the waters out& its still raining...BUT God! 08:58 AM September 14, 2008
* God I praise you that gas is only $3.43 here 10:02 AM September 14, 2008
* I also thank you that Shipleys is OPEN!!! 10:22 AM September 14, 2008
* Shipleys didn't have kolaches :( but got my donuts! (its the little things in scores...good memories w/ friends&sweets) 10:34 AM September 14, 2008
* I HAVE POWER!! and truly is Comcastic...waiting to see if the net is up :) 03:14 PM September 14, 2008

Minimal damage to Angie's home. But she still doesn't have power. I'm back at my apartment now.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

On the Third Day God created vegetation

I wish I could sit and "veg" today. But tomorrow is moving day. I really hate that moving means I'm going to have to miss Third Day at Rock the Universe, and Third Day in Savannah, GA with all the girls, and Third Day in Ocala, and Third Day in Tampa...wait why am I going?

If you are a member of Third Day's fan club "WIRED" today begins the pre-sale. You can also sign up for meet&greet passes to most of the shows. Its a pretty sweet deal (if your into that sorta stuff)

I saw Third Day LIVE this past weekend at Wild Adventures in Valdosta GA. I have pictures up on my FACEBOOK account. I'm looking forward to the rest of the Music Builds Tour!

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Saturday, August 16, 2008

Generation Kill

Has anyone been following this show on HBO? I would love to hear from some service people. Tonights episode, Burning Dog, starts off with our military watching a village, identifying only women and children. Then blowing the village off the face of the planet. Please tell me this isn't a truthful depiction of what is really going on. If so, can anyone explain the logic?

Hey Jennifer & Jason thank you so much for installing my new closet. I won't keep repeating the same mistakes. ;) Thanks for your unconditional support of all of my harebrained ideas too. Your the greatest!! LOL

Sunday, August 03, 2008

On the Third Day

On the third day of every month. We Gomers blog about Third Day. Its the Gomer thing to do. This week was street week for Third Days new CD Revelation. There were secret shows, earthquakes and lots of twitters to celebrate the release. The hype is not over rated. This is one of Third Days best CD's to date. Even if they don't thank the fans, if some of the songs sound like wire...blah blah blah I've heard all the negative and guess what? Its still not enough negative to take away from the positive attributes of this CD. From start to finish, REVELATION ROCKS!

My favorite song is OTHERSIDE. Co-written by Mac Powell and Tai Anderson, it has the strongest punch of pure energy on the CD. With Robert Randolph playing the pedal guitar on the CD I'm hoping that he joins the the band on stage for the live version of the song too.

The Music Builds Tour is going to be the hottest ticket of the fall. I have already purchased tickets to 4 of the shows. I'd suggest that you do the same. Get them early because you will not want to sit in the back for this show!!

Alright, Lets ROCK IT!!

Friday, August 01, 2008

Is it safe to land?

I have just written a review on the new Jars of Clay EP CLOSER (available on iTunes now). It tends to take a while for it to make it up to inReview but I wanted to share it with you. If your one of those who cant afford to buy another EP/CD right now, do yourself a favor and download the song Safe To Land (for $0.99). It could be one of the best Jars of Clay songs ever. Let me know what you think about it. (I wish that I was in love. And that he would write a song like that to me.)

Jars of Clay is at it again. In the studio working on a new CD. To whet the appetite of their fans they have released an EP of songs to iTunes called CLOSER. When I heard the first song released, the title track Closer, I was taken back by the lightheartedness of the song. Usually a Jars of Clay song is deep and multi layered. They can be considered a “deep thinking” mans band. Not that the casual listener won’t like their music, but without much thought you really don’t understand or grasp the full meaning of most of Jars of Clays material. So listening to the casual, almost silliness of Closer had me wondering if I was hearing a new Jars of Clay. The song has a catchy chorus even if the first lyrics are somewhat basic/ elementary. At first listen, I didn’t like it. But I held out criticism until I could hear the whole EP. I am glad I did. With every listen I like the single Closer more and more, however it was love at first listen to the song Safe To Land. WOW this is a powerful song. One that every person in love will wish that their mate would have written to them. I’m coming home if these wheels touch down/ I’m coming home/ I’m waking you up/ in the middle of the night/ I’m not giving up/ I’m gonna stay until we make it work/ We’re not going down even if it gets worse/ We’ll work it out/ I need your light/ guide me in/ is it safe?”

The band has reworked Love Song for A Savior and Flood (New Rain) in such a way that makes you want to listen to these songs again as if they were new. Rounding out the EP is Prisoner of Hope. Yet another classic thought provoking song that invokes true emotions in its listeners, “Let the wind run out of breath/ make you bleed from the heart/ and ache from the mind.... Fall into me/I’ll turn your ashes into flames...Prisoner of hope it won’t be long now/Prisoner of Hope you can be strong now/Prisoner I hope you carry on now/Prisoner your love can’t be held down”

If this EP is indicative of what lies in store for Jars of Clay I’m glad that they are back at it. I’m looking forward to hearing these songs live on the Music Builds Tour and anticipating the full release of their new CD due out in the Spring of ‘09 on their independent label Grey Matters. Jars of Clay has come home, and I think its safe for this EP to land. CLOSER is available on iTunes and will be available at their live shows.

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Third Day rocks LA!

Third Day heads to LA today to play on the Tonight Show with Jay Leno. They are such an awesome band. I've always knew that Third Day rocks. Today even the ground shook! Yes I went there... Third Day rocked LA!

I love Revelation. As I opened the CD (I've had a copy of it since GMA week) to study the CD artwork. I like to read all the CD liners. You can find out interesting stuff there. As I read through I was touched by the thank you to Brad Avery. (I still feel as though there has been a terrible divorce and, as fans, we are the children caught in the middle.) What didn't touch me was the "thank you" from the band. "...We would also like to thank our families, friends, and home churches for giving us the encouragement and support to live out our dreams." Not one mention of a thanks to the fans.

I'm praying that the non mention of fans only means that it was an over sight and not an indication that Third Day no longer "Loves" its fans but rather merely needs us now!

All good things come to an end~ or so they say. (I wonder who 'they' are!) I refuse to believe that this is the end of the Gomers, or the Third Day love for their fans.

If you don't have a copy of REVELATION the new studio CD from Third Day, whats wrong with you?!?! The CD is good. I love it.

Thank You Third Day!

Friday, July 25, 2008

Revelation in 3 Days!

One day I'm going to get organized. I'm going to stop procrastinating. My closet fell this past week. Maybe I'll start there. Its a new pay cycle so all of my charting has to be done by Sunday. Maybe I'll stop procrastinating after that.

I'm watching a comedian on TV who is so funny. I don't remember the last time I sat and laughed, alone. LOL. No seriously I'm laughing out loud at this guy. Daniel Tosh. One day he's going to be famous. I know because he just told me so.

Chance just came home. He even thinks this guy is funny. That's really saying something because Chance is the funnest person ever.

OH yeah Third Day's new CD Revelation releases in 3 DAYS! Get it, you'll love it. I promise :)

Sunday, July 20, 2008

When the banks became cathedrals ...

I was listening to Cold Play yesterday and this line stuck out at me. I know when they wrote it the analogy was probably inferring that we started worshiping money so therefore the "banks became cathedrals."

When I heard it yesterday my thought was, hum. How true that line is, but on a different level. Today as the banks are closing, they are no more than hollow empty places to be. Very similar to some of the Cathedrals, or houses of God of today. After all aren't we to be the house of God?

Some days I feel hollow. I think I eat too much on those days. LOL Why am I searching and what I searching for? I have God. I know where He is and where He fits in my life. Why isn't that enough? I think maybe, I'm searching for a different "him" haha. I've never done that before.

Here I sit at 10:23 on a Sunday night, with a whole week of charting that needs to be done, eating a double cheese burger from 5 Guys and Some Fries. Pouring my heart out to a blank computer page, with a mindless TV blaring in the background for noise to drown out the quiet. In stead of cuddling up with a book, resting my head listening to the heart beat of another. (That is assuming my charting was done)

Friday, July 18, 2008

Another day at the beach with my mom. The waves were pounding today. I fell asleep listening to them. I awoke, turned, slept some more. I sit tonight feeling the repercussion of my actions. My only transgression seams to be that in my eyes. They are a lovely shade of purple with pink puffiness.

It seams as though I am defying all that I've held in truth. I'm finding a new and beautiful truth is abounding all around me. A peace within. Someone once told me in conversation that we are all "wounded healers." He spoke it with such ease and casualness that I wonder if he even realized the depth of what he was saying to me.

Wounded healers are often those who have been wounded in some way, and now try to help others through struggles. In my mind that is not at all what I am going through. At first I thought this remark was spoken at random, in random. I love randomness. It causes you to think, to have another thought process interjected into the course that you had already laid out, the response that you had predetermined that you were going to give.

Yet the more I pondered this seemingly random string of words placed together in my path, I wonder if they're random at all. I do believe that there are no accidents in life. Things happen for a reason in due season. But why did that phrase grab me.

My pain is not from a wound. The reflections of own soul are what is haunting me. I became complacent. I gave up a long time ago. It was as if I ceased to exist to become what was expected of me. I stopped all that I held dear because I was told that is/was not my "destiny" in life. I became a nurse at the advise of others, and it has not been an altogether bad thing. It has given me an income that has kept me self sufficient. Needing no one.

Doug told me once that the one thing he hated about me was that I pretended like nothing was wrong. I admit, I do take the Scarlet O'Hare approach to things, "I'll not think about that today." I always revert back to my 5 year rule. If this fight/ situation/ argument/ disagreement won't matter in 5 years, why let it matter now? Maybe I've gone there so much that I refuse to allow anything to matter to me. I don't know. But I want to find out. I'm searching, I'm looking, I'm open.

(PS no MP3 player at the beach... how impressive is that.. all this chatter and no musical background for inspiration?!? LOL)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

I am not obsessed with him... Seriously I'm not. But, OK maybe a little. But he is SOOOOO funny! (Or at least his writers are)

Thank you girls for my "concert" phone call!

BTW I am NOT talking about Chris ;)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

I sat with Jennifer in church Sunday night. She asked me to come sit with her. Jason was on cameras. It was nice to feel wanted. Jennifer writes left handed. I think it's so graceful and beautiful. My right handed penmanship is pretty. I hear it all the time, "Your handwriting is so beautiful."

I'm searching for my echo. To find that with which I can be satisfied 80% of the time. I know that I'd rather remain utterly lonely and alone than to settle for that which does not fit in with the inner music of my soul. In the past I've questioned my ability to love outside of myself, now I question the ability of a stranger to see through love what I am inside, and it want to enter into my circle.

Every door I ever tried was locked/ Oh I'm just waiting 'till the shine wears off.

I'm not sure at what point I could no longer contain my fascination with Jennifer's penmanship [which by-the-way for as graceful and beautiful as the movements are... its outcome is not!] On the back of the bulletin I scratched out, "I'm going to teach myself to write left handed, I'm bored writing right handed." To which there was only one appropriate response that fits my circle of perception and depth of reality... "Dork"

Hello, (Hello) Is there anybody in there?/Just nod if you can hear me...

God help me to find my community of belonging with those whom my soul loves and my heart understands.

No I don't want a battle from beginning to end/ I don't want to cycle love and cycle revenge/ I don't want to follow death and all of his friends.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Some days I struggle more with what lies inside, not the realities of the truth, but the need for simple proof...

WOW sometimes my own twitters amaze me. I spent yesterday wandering around in my own brain, trying to figure out~ when did dying to myself mean I was to become someone else. Not a transformation from what I am to who He is, but from who I am to who I think they think I should be. Still "surrounded by people who don't think the way I do..."

There is a reality in my head that makes me not want to forget. But I'm forgetting half of the things I said and all of the reasons I said them. "This is who I am." I'm a thinker, a dreamer, a lover of many things not considered lovely by most. I'm the loner who doesn't always want to be alone. I don't want to sit and talk to you about Third Day, or the boards, or the tour... I want to talk about how Third Day has inspired you or me, how the boards have added another level of friendships to my (our) life, or how the tour has moved me/us to action to help create a better way of living for those less fortunate.

If your not one of my GOMERS I don't even want to discuss Third Day with you (outside of mentioning that Revelation ROCKS and you need to pre-order it), because you have no idea.

I want to talk to you about how beautiful the sky looks when God-kissed first thing in the morning, or the blushing of the evening sky as she gets ready to lay the day down. I want to feel the emotion in your eyes as you tell me about something you are passionate about. If you've spent any time with me, you know my passion for music. (Epically guitars~lol) Who are you? And why, after all of these years, do I have to ask you? Why don't I know you?

I've wondered if I'm so caught up in myself that I haven't been able to catch you. I'm seeking. I'm knocking. I'm open.

"I don't understand why we can't get close enough."


Tuesday, July 08, 2008

"I'm surrounded by people who don't think like I do"

Church Sunday was interesting to say the least. I was told that my "chasing" after these bands was from a bad spirit even if they're Christian bands. (See my prior post on why we Gomers do what we do) That my desire to do the interviews, write the CD reviews, concert reviews ~ none of that is from God, and if I kept it up I would be in stubborn obstinance.

"Im looking to the sky to save me/Looking for a sign of life/Looking for something to help me burn out bright"

Sitting and staring for days. The one thing that I've had as an outlet to help me keep some sanity in all of this... The few bright moments spent with friends~ spent with my own feelings lately... none of that is from God? I've finally gotten to a real and honest level with my own skin but its not from Him.

I've had more phone and face to face conversations with "Houston, TX" and "Lutz, FL" than I've had with any member of my church this whole year. When asked, "How are you?" I've replied, "I'm still standing... I'm blogging all of it if you want to know the truth!" While laughing. No one has. They still look through me.

I'm the type who can't open up to people about my feelings very easily. I'm the one that makes you laugh. Come to me if you need to smile. If you need encouragement. (If you want me to promote something HAHHAHAHHHA... I'm your go-to-person for that.)

So do I go back inside me? Hold it all inside again so that it hurts to even smile? Be "fake" to fit in with the people who don't even think like I do? I wonder if some of the people at church were to actually go into their right brain what would they find.

I was told that if I wanted to see how much of a prayer covering was actually over Chance and myself, try leaving the church and I'd see. The sermons at my church are awesome. Its the only church I've gone to as a Christian. It has helped mold me into who I am. I've learned more there than I did in my whole life before there.

We'd live happily ever trapped/If you just save my life/Run and tell the angels/That everything is all right.... Im tired of trying

Philippians 1:7-11 NIV


Friday, July 04, 2008

The DMV & Me

Yesterday I went to the DMV. I transferred my "THRDAY" tag over to Chance's Bronco II that he is officially getting today. **Just for the record I am wayyyyy to young to have a 16 year old!!**
DMV Clerk, "Thursday?"
"No, (giggle) its actually Third Day. They're a Christian rock band."
"Ah, I wonder how they got their name? What did God do on the third day."
**Blank stare not sure if she was kidding**
"Um, he created vegetation." (laughing out loud now)
"Really? Thats funny"
"Oh wait, there was that whole raised-from-the-dead thing too"
"Ah So are we not supposed to eat meat?"
*Realizing she is serious and has no idea what I'm talking about*
"No, we can eat meat. On the third day Jesus was raised from the dead as our savior."
"Shows you how much I go to church right?"
"Well you should come to my church, you'd have a blast! I go to an Assembly of God... we know how to rock!"
"I don't know.. I was raised Catholic, you know the whole stand-sit-kneel thing. The first time I went to church here in the south I was like whoa~ your not supposed to talk in church."
**haha**"Well it'd be hard for me to keep silent!"
"Have a great holiday"
"You too, hope to see you Sunday."

I dated a guy that was Catholic once. I wonder what Jerry is up to these days. He took me to church with him. I don't remember the whole stand-sit-kneel thing. I do remember not understanding half of what was going on, and Jerry's smile that day while watching me. Funny how sometimes all you remember is a look or a touch. I honestly don't remember what he said to get me there or what he said afterward. But I remember the way he looked at me and smiled at that moment.

Let your smile speak for you today. It might be all they remember on day....

Thursday, July 03, 2008

On the Third Day

So the third day of each month I shall be blogging about Third Day. Why? Because its the Gomer thing to do. Since there are only 24 more days until Revelation is released why don't I just cut and past my review? I know. Because I've already done that on here... but not on the third day! So for the ease of TIMEs sake ;) I shall waste a day of blog space in repeat. Next month I shall hold my thoughts inside until such a TIME as this!!

Third Day – Revelation

For everyone who wondered if they had seen the beginning of the end for Third Day, the band answers back with its best CD to date. From the opening track they proclaim "This is Who I Am."

"I’m the son of a good man, I’m the child of an angel," read the lyrics. "I’m the brother of a wild one, and I’m looking for direction, I’m the lover a beauty, I’m father of blessings, I’m the singer of a love song, but is that all I’m good for? This is who I am!"

The tune "Slow Down" reminds you, in case you forgot, that this is a rock band. Lead singer Mac Powell begins the song with words that make his intentions plain: "Alright," he says, "lets rock it." American Idol alum Chris Daughtry offer back-up vocals on the track. At one point, Powell delivers a strong lyrical play on words, "I can’t seam to work it out, so help me God!" that leaves no doubt they plan on delivering a rock CD from start to finish.

There are no "skip to the next" tracks on this CD. Even in the slower songs where you see the depth of pain that they have endured over the last couple of months: "What I thought was the best for me turn to be all the worst I could find. If I run to you will you hold me in your arms forevermore?"

The song "Run to You" gives a glimpse into the heart and soul of this band. Decisions made over the last couple of months were not callous, but rather had these men on their knees crying out for direction, as is evident on the CD’s title track: "Tell me should I stay here or do I need to move? Give me revelation, I’ve got nothing without you."

The band raises existing standards for Christian pop rock on "Otherside." The song may not find itself in heavy rotation for the family-friendly radio stations, but delivers the strongest punch of energy on the album. "Let Me Love You" is a tender love song for anyone struggling to find shelter in God’s arms through a tough season: "Give up on the other things, my love can bring you more...Come on let me love you now, Come on let me hold you through the storms, I will keep you safe and warm."

Bringing it back to the southern rock roots of the band is the song"I’ll always be true," whose lyrics read: "Everyday that I live, every breath that I breathe yes it was all for you... When you need a shoulder to cry on I’m here every time and when you need a hand to hold I’ll give you mine. I’ll always be true!"

Guest singer Lacey Mosley, of Flyleaf, adds a perfect compliment to Mac on "Born Again": "I have a feeling in my soul, and I pray that I’m not wrong. That the life I have now, it is only the beginning. It feels like I’m born again, it feels like I’m living, for the very first time."

Mac’s vocals on "Give Love" are the smoothest that he has ever laid down on any track. He effortlessly delivers what may be his best ballad ever: "Listen very closely as I sing this song, and please believe that I mean every word. When I say I love you I mean it with all my heart, let it be the best thing that you’ve ever heard"

"Caught Up in Yourself" and "Ready" bring more rock flavor to the CD, while "Take it All" slows back down: "Now I’m ready to let go, to give it away. Take it all because I can’t take it any longer. With all I have I can’t make it on my own."

This CD will have you ready to rock, and ready to fall in love with Third Day all over again. The CD drops into stores on July 29. Pre orders began on May 2 WHY DON'T YOU ALREADY HAVE IT ORDERED???

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Music expresses that which cannot be put into words and that which cannot remain silent. - Victor Hugo

Tuesday, July 01, 2008

I think he's funny...

Probably the funniest Onion EVER!!!

Monday, June 30, 2008

when I climb down this mountain and get back to my life... I won't settle for ordinary things

I was talking to a very sweet person this weekend. He is a member of a band that I love. At the risk of sounding like a fan-addict I confessed that I will be attending 7 shows this year. He appeared amazed and stated something along the line of... I hope we can keep it interesting for you. I couldn't help but smile. Lo after all these years they still don't get it do they? I wonder if any band outside of Third Day understands the Gomers. (And sometimes I wonder if Third Day really gets it) I do not fly out to Texas just to see Third Day, or Jars of Clay, or the Music Builds tour. (I did fly there one time to see NeedToBreathe but there were other circumstances built around that HAHA) I, like all the others I know, plan our show travels around who else is going to be at a particular show. We've made friends online but we get together and bond those ties without the "60 second rule." We come from all sorts of backgrounds and various religions, yet when we get together all that matters is the lyrics of the song Creed. We believe in God the Father... I don't care if they're Baptist and they don't mind if I'm Assembly of God. It's like that old blog post that I did a year or so ago. We are one body. And from a medical view, our body (made primarily of water... some in the form of blood) has many different functioning systems. We have a liver and kidneys that both work as filters for the blood. Yet neither of them have the same output. They go about the process differently. They use different triggering agents. They look different, act different yet produce the same effect. If either of them fail both of them will.

We travel to shows because its a glimpse here of what there is going to be like. We've fallen in love with the fellowship of people who love the same God. We've even broken off into sub groups and still travel together. (Jars, Toby, Crowder, DecembeRadio, NeedToBreathe... the list goes on)

And on a not-so-spiritual-but-still-real where the rubber meets the road level... We travel to the shows because we get to wake up in a different city every night. We know how to order the hash browns at Waffle House without studying the menu. We live like rock stars for a few days of the week before heading back to the mediocrity of life. We know we've been a part of something larger than us and we come back a little more changed each time. We thank you bands for giving us a common ground to travel too. But seriously, its not about you ;)

Sunday, June 29, 2008

..many lost still seek to find themselves in me...they ask me to revel the very thoughts they would conceal...Love rescue me

Some bands take the stage with theatrics. Some with grace and poise. Then there are bands like Jars that move about the stage in somewhat quirky, even awkward but purposeful movements. On a hot muggy, rain delayed night in central Florida the band did just that. There is a fluid in Jars music that rolls from the stage into very the blood and water that make up your existence. You feel Jars. You experience something larger than yourself, deeper than what you may want to explore in a crowd. Looking around I saw people who either didn’t want to, or were unable to, comprehend the flow of the music, the very spirit and essence of God showing up, making Himself known. I think as creatures we hide from God. Its our very nature to hide. We hide from ourselves. When Adam sinned in the garden he hid from God, he didn’t seek after God to seek His forgiveness. Jars reminds us that we are in fact hiding from a world that is dying, and we are slowly dying with it. I don’t know exactly when I stopped sleeping. When I starting sitting and staring into nothing. Trapped in this situation that wont go away. I don’t want it to completely go away. That would mean that Daddy was gone. And mom not far behind him. Is there anyone out there who is struggling with two parents in chemotherapy? Two strong Christians who honestly believe that nothing but the will of God can and will come in their lives. Yet mom calls me as I drive around town visiting patients that are too sick to be left alone, but are victims of the insurance business that says they’ve used up enough hospital time, “Janet, I need you to be strong for me now. Are you going to be OK? Because I really need you now. I can’t handle this (with Daddy) anymore. The doctors have said.....” “You’re a nurse so I know you know more than what your telling me, but can you please just help me thru this? I love you.” My patients have my cell number. I take their calls. They think I am the best nurse Baptist has. I know because they write letters. Letters that get read during staff meetings. All eyes on me. Yet no one sees. Sometimes, I really, truly, honestly wish I wasn’t so alone. That I had arms to fall into to cry. “Janet, I need you to be strong for me.” “Mamma, God has this, he has daddy. If, no when daddy goes, he’s just going to step from here to there. One home to another. We will see him again. One day is like a thousand so he probably won’t even have time to miss us!” She laughs....while I hold everything inside but the tear that slowly rolls down getting trapped in the rim of my sunglasses."I gotta go I'm in someones driveway and I need to go inside." "Thanks Jannie, I love you." "I love you too mom." She has made it through one more day with hope and encouragement from me. Thanks Jars for pouring out a little fluid last night to fill me back up.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


"Sometimes I think about the past, the road that I was on, the road that lead me home..."

I love it when I hear just what I need to hear just when I need to hear it. Thank you God for gently calling me... and DecembeRadio for already putting lyric to note that which would make me smile today.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

No flood waring...still the waters rise...

The storm hits today.

I'm listening to Jars' Good Monsters (haven't we been here before?)

I'm watching the rain hit the lake. The wind is so strong it is appears as though there are white caps on the water.

It has taken a couple of days for it to get here but the storm has arrived. "There are storms coming that can't be prayed away."

Spent the day trying to drive with fluid vision. Wore sunglasses to the mandatory meeting to hide my eyes. No one even noticed.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Can you hear that?

Listen... there it is again. I think I'll open the back sliding glass wall and listen to the sound of the rain falling on the lake and the wind in the trees.

There it is again. That sound. The sound of quiet. Walking into a empty house alone at the end of the day. The sound of nothing greeting me at the door.

No one to call. No one to feed. No clothes to wash. No showers to remind of. I've looked forward to Chance going to camp. But only one evening alone, and I realize I am alone.

I hear the rumble of thunder in the distance. A storm is coming my way.

I hear you calling my name
in the echoes of the wind.
I see your spirit in the
shadows now and then...

Call My Name~ Third Day's Revelation... in stores July 29th. In my CD player NOW!

Thursday, June 19, 2008

I got to spend the day at the beach today with my mom. I honestly don't think there is a sound in nature that sounds better than the waves crashing on the shore. I only wish that there were sunscreen strong enough to keep me from burning. Why do they call it sun kissed? I think its more like sun punched! But in a day or two it will fade. I'm glad the memory of mom and me at the beach (looking for sharks... because Jaws is out there!) will last as long as my memory, or this blog, exists! I sat and read back over some of the older stuff that I used to write. Some of it was pretty good. I read more back then, thats obvious.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Walking the line...

I actually had a wonderful day at work today. I was still at home in my PJ's at 10:30. I saw my 6 patients, no complications and back home by 3:30. I missed church tonight. I have no idea why I don't like going on Wednesday nights. Its not that I don't think I need it. God you know I do. Speaking of God lol. Something hit me today. As I was driving across the Buckman bridge. (I know.. of all places to get lost in thought right, right?) I am still having problems with my mouth. So God has shown me that I'm walking so close to the edge with some of the things say. So that when I stumble, I'm so close that I fall over... and not a good "Other side" either. When I say things like, "That is so freaking awesome!" I'm so close. Even though what I say isn't "wrong." It opens a door in my subconscious thought patterns, that when anger hits me, and knocks me for a loop. Oops there I go again. I know I'm probably the only one, who at the level of teaching/training that I've had still stumbles over something like that, but I'm praying that God now that you've shown me this, I can make a change. So help me God...

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

this is my life...

My twitter updates roll into my tumblr account which updates my facebook page. All I need now (is to breathe lol) is a pocket protector and I'd be set!

I have some potential interviews coming up in the future. I'll keep you posted. Right now I thing I'm actually going to go work out alone... as is much of my life! :(

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

I got up this morning to go into work early. Was going to get caught up. Only to find a voice mail indicating that my AM IV was to be moved to 2 pm~ I didn't even know I was doing an IV. And it was peak and trough labs. Great. Even if I got there early to draw the trough and start the gentamycin at one, by the time it finished infusing it would be 2. The peak should be drawn at 4. Labs close at 4. I'd have to drive them downtown to BMC main. So I changed around my other patients. Rearranged my day. Wasn't going to get upset. I should be accustomed to being screwed by BHHC right right? I've only been doing this for 2 years. Why would today be any different? I guess I just hoped against hope that one day I'd wake up and love being a nurse. I'd love going to work. So I go into work to find out who my patient was and the info on where to go. I took my supplies out to my car. Put my keys down in the trunk and then shut it. Great. Perfect. Now not only was I behind, I was 2 patients over in productivity, AND my keys were locked in the trunk of the car... So I sat at a desk and tried to move from my Left brain to my Right brain. Didn't work. Well it did for a little while. I pray that my son doesn't have to take a career for money. It really sucks. Oh if we could run away maybe we could change... get back on our feet again...finally make it home again..

Monday, June 09, 2008

Here I am ... again

Hi all. In case you haven't noticed I'm a contributing writer for now. Don't worry I'm keeping my day job. Daddy has started back on his treatments and its so hard for me to see him weak. As an RN I want to do something, anything to help him but I can't. Not only am I not a chemo nurse (so my knowledge is limited)there really isn't a whole lot that can be done. I can pray and trust in my faith, believe what I know to be true and continue to praise. And when all else fails... cry. I will continue to lift my eyes... to the maker...of the mountains I can't climb... (God I thank you for the praises that you've given to others to share. Thank you that I can make them my own, and give them back to you!)

Tuesday, June 03, 2008

I NeedToBreathe!

I am sure that by now the men of NeedToBreathe are getting a little tired of the cliches that naturally surround their name. But after a week of non stop GMA it was a breath of fresh air to meet up in the parking lot of Chick-Fil-a in Houston, TX to catch a KSBJ’s Brown Bag special concert and watch a true southern gritty rock and roll band perform. Did I mention that it was Christian rock? The NeedToBreathe message is not as in-your-face Christian as some acts, but it is a much welcome change on the music scene. Its nice to rock out to music that is as good, if not better than the secular scene yet still able to raise your hands in worship(or shake it like you know you want to do ). NeedToBreathe is one of the rare bands that you can see in a club or a church and the music, the message, and the meaning still translate, all glorifying the God of the Universe. Reminding us that we can be in the world and not of it, constant in any season. If you have friends that are not Christian, love to rock and your trying to “reach” them, I’d recommend that you buy them a copy of NeedToBreathe’s CD “The Heat” AND take them to see these guys play. You won’t be disappointed by either.

The band took the stage with an unrecorded intro to Shine that had the crowd on their feet and shaking it. They rounded out the evening with More Time, Streets of Gold, Sweet Talking, Daylight, Haley, Washed by the Water, You can’t always get What You Want (Rolling Stones Cover) and Signature of Devine.

The bands sophomore CD, The Heat, 2007 Atlantic Records, is a cross over CD that holds it own in the secular arena as well as the Christian scene. The band was nominated for Dove awards for the Rock/Contemporary Recorded Song of the Year and Rock/Contemporary Album of the Year. While the CD didn’t win with the voters it is a winner with the fans. The CD starts off with a simple question, can you Spare the Time? The drum intro to Restless kicks the CD off with a rocking start. There are very few CD’s that I can pop in and listen to the entire CD without skipping at least one of the tracks, but this CD is one of them. The latest radio single Washed By the Water is a moving story written by the bands lead singer Bear Reinhart about his fathers struggles as a pastor.

While much of this bands history is hard to uncover their future is wide open. Wide open is how I ended up playing much of this CD. Streets of Gold reminds us of what were struggling for, “it’s easy to say that there’s a reason for this, Much harder to know, That what we say is true” while Looks Like Love reminds us to enjoy the trip there, “Our hearts can only shake, When there’s risk that they could break”. I’d rate this CD a 10 out of 10. I’ve bought 3 copies to give away so far. I’d recommend that you buy at least one for yourself.

Janet Mattox
Resident Rocker JanetRN

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Third Day – Revelation

For everyone who wondered if they had seen the beginning of the end for Third Day, the band answers back with its best CD to date. From the opening track they proclaim "This is Who I Am."

"I’m the son of a good man, I’m the child of an angel," read the lyrics. "I’m the brother of a wild one, and I’m looking for direction, I’m the lover a beauty, I’m father of blessings, I’m the singer of a love song, but is that all I’m good for? This is who I am!"

The tune "Slow Down" reminds you, in case you forgot, that this is a rock band. Lead singer Mac Powell begins the song with words that make his intentions plain: "Alright," he says, "lets rock it." American Idol alum Chris Daughtry offer back-up vocals on the track. At one point, Powell delivers a strong lyrical play on words, "I can’t seam to work it out, so help me God!" that leaves no doubt they plan on delivering a rock CD from start to finish.

There are no "skip to the next" tracks on this CD. Even in the slower songs where you see the depth of pain that they have endured over the last couple of months: "What I thought was the best for me turn to be all the worst I could find. If I run to you will you hold me in your arms forevermore?"

The song "Run to You" gives a glimpse into the heart and soul of this band. Decisions made over the last couple of months were not callous, but rather had these men on their knees crying out for direction, as is evident on the CD’s title track: "Tell me should I stay here or do I need to move? Give me revelation, I’ve got nothing without you."

The band raises existing standards for Christian pop rock on "Otherside." The song may not find itself in heavy rotation for the family-friendly radio stations, but delivers the strongest punch of energy on the album. "Let Me Love You" is a tender love song for anyone struggling to find shelter in God’s arms through a tough season: "Give up on the other things, my love can bring you more...Come on let me love you now, Come on let me hold you through the storms, I will keep you safe and warm."

Bringing it back to the southern rock roots of the band is the song"I’ll always be true," whose lyrics read: "Everyday that I live, every breath that I breathe yes it was all for you... When you need a shoulder to cry on I’m here every time and when you need a hand to hold I’ll give you mine. I’ll always be true!"

Guest singer Lacey Mosley, of Flyleaf, adds a perfect compliment to Mac on "Born Again": "I have a feeling in my soul, and I pray that I’m not wrong. That the life I have now, it is only the beginning. It feels like I’m born again, it feels like I’m living, for the very first time."

Mac’s vocals on "Give Love" are the smoothest that he has ever laid down on any track. He effortlessly delivers what may be his best ballad ever: "Listen very closely as I sing this song, and please believe that I mean every word. When I say I love you I mean it with all my heart, let it be the best thing that you’ve ever heard"

"Caught Up in Yourself" and "Ready" bring more rock flavor to the CD, while "Take it All" slows back down: "Now I’m ready to let go, to give it away. Take it all because I can’t take it any longer. With all I have I can’t make it on my own."

This CD will have you ready to rock, and ready to fall in love with Third Day all over again. The CD drops into stores on July 29. Pre orders began on May 2.

Monday, March 10, 2008

A highway with no one on it...

God I want a relationship with you.

Not a one night one time experience. I want to know you for who you are. I want to know -"That way isn't right" because I know you well enough to know what you'd think about it. I want to know your thoughts towards me without having to continuously ask you.

Oh to be so hid that I'm found... in you.

Wouldn't it be lovely if the whole world or at least the whole church had knowing God in the forefront of their thoughts/desires/hopes/plans/dreams/aspirations/heart and soul...Sometimes it feels as if I'm on a highway with no one on it...A free way to a new way, with very little traffic.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

All that is within me

Sometimes life isn't all its cracked up to be. Its a dream that sometimes becomes a reality. And the reality brings things that we aren't prepared to handle. Life has a way of happening in unpredictable ways with unpredictable outcomes. Sometimes we think were OK when in reality we don't even know what lies inside.
All that is within me... sometimes I wonder what is truely left inside of me. What is my heart truly made of. What is it that drives me. What is my prime objective and motivation behind my own actions. I've heard it said that you know exactly why you do things. Sometimes I'm not so sure that I even know who I am- let alone know my motives.

Friday, January 25, 2008

I am home from work again today. I got dressed to go in but they called and talked to me... and basically talked me out of going to work. With the exception of the breathing treatments I’m doing every 4 hours there is nothing I can’t do there that I’m not doing here right? (Well.. There is the napping...)

So they have told me that I have adult onset of Asthma. I still find that hard to believe and even harder to accept. I’m thinking that I have a bronchitis that I can’t kick. And I’m going to believe that God will heal me from this.

Mom’s second dose of her chemo didn’t go well. She had a reaction to the medications. Today (dose 3) dad is with her. I hate that I’m too sick to be around her. It feels as though when she needs me most I’m not there.

I’m reading the book of Isaiah. God I ask for your wisdom. Holy, holy,holy is the Lord of hosts; the whole earth is full of his glory.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Grace Can!

Hey everyone... what’s up? How have you been? I recently got finished watching Rock of Love re-runs and feel all the more stupid-er for it. I got to catch the last 3 episodes and the reunion special. :rolleyes: And yup you guessed it... no remote control for the tv (why else would I have watched it?)

So I'm reading in John and the verse catches my attention 1:16 "grace for grace." It's been rolling around in there for a couple of days. I have received grace for grace! Glory to God! He gives me the grace I need for grace! So that "All that the Father giveth me shall come to me!" And that of all which he has given me I should lose nothing!(6:37 & 39)

I’m so thankful that in this hard time He is still drawing me. That He hasn’t left me to myself and my own ways. I’ve had some problems with Chance lately. But God says that all he has given me... I should lose nothing!!! He also says that I can have my seed and my seeds seed so there is more to come! I’m thankful that others are there for me so that we can pull him thru this. My bestest friend assures me that he’s not the first teenager and I’m not the first single mom dealing with it! Hallelujah!!

Mom has started a new type of chemo. Her first dose went pretty smooth so maybe next time she won’t have to stay so long for the treatment. Now if daddy would just take care of himself! LOL.
It’s not a small world anymore. And I have a big year ahead. But I’m not viewing it as a “New” beginning with a clean slate like I heard others say. I’m tired of going around the same mountain over and over again. I’m moving along and pressing ahead and getting involved with what God gives. In spite of me and what I see it’s all because of calvary that GRACE CAN!