Time for Christ: Carol in my heart

Carola folksong with religious meaning usually sung at Christmas, a familiar tune to welcome and celebrate the spirit of Christmastime


My friend Carol. She’s a wonderful lady. I met her several years ago, before 2012, at Shoal Creek Community Church, back in Missouri. Carol is soft in voice and features, hard to know. Blonde. Statuesque. She could be a secret, delicate ballerina that only dances for God. Full of passion. A deep river of heart and love, running fast, yet soundless. And at the bottom of all, a Christ-centered human. She is generous of spirit, kind and, in a way, mysterious. If she were a song (carol)–Silent Night. Awe-filled, yet restrained and humble. I admire her quiet dignity, beauty, strength and grace.

After I mentioned (several times online, sorry!) about my upcoming trip to Israel, I recently discovered that Carol volunteers at Habitat for Humanity and I couldn’t wait to interview her about her service. Thank you, Carol, for answering my questions with such thoughtful responses! Thank you for sharing your heart and being comfortable enough to do that! You’re a good writer, Lady!


What is the name of the organization that you volunteer with?

Habitat for Humanity RV Care-a-Vanners

What is their mission?

It supports Habitat for Humanity’s vision of a world where everyone has a decent place to live.

How long have you been serving with this group?

3 years

Where did you go this summer on your mission?

Brookings, SD

What did you do on this mission?

It’s usually a two-week period of helping to build a house. We do whatever we are capable of doing, at whatever stage of building they are when we arrive. We have started from slab, framing walls and have gotten there at the stage of putting on siding, putting in windows and painting.

How do you feel you’ve grown as a Christian or person after this trip?

As a person, I’ve learned skills I never thought I would ever know. People are willing to teach. All you have to do is ask. Also, I’ve become more aware and accepting of other cultures and religions. Habitat for Humanity is a Christian organization, but they don’t discriminate on the basis of religion, age, gender or lifestyle. Morning devotionals are a regular part of every site build. It helps us keep our minds focused on why we do what we do. It doesn’t have to be a prayer. It can be a story or poem or quotes to inspire. We do usually close with a prayer and then hold hands and speak the Habitat motto:

“Habitat’s not a hand out but a hand UP!”

I now feel more comfortable sharing about my faith than I used to, so I feel I’ve grown some in that regard.

Why do you serve?

We like it because we love to travel, camp, meet new people and share God’s love by giving to those who are less fortunate. It’s a way we can do all of that and also work on keeping ourselves somewhat fit in our retirement. We love the camaraderie and being part of a group of like-minded individuals coming together to work towards a goal for the betterment of a family’s life. The thankfulness of the family shines through to return God’s love back to us.

Additional details:

Once you join the group you can go online to sign up. There is a schedule of locations and dates and number of spots available. Usually it’s free or reduced cost camping for the two-week period of the build.


Thank you, Carol! For your service to H for H! And for donating to my trip. I truly value our friendship, even if we can’t sip coffee together. Wouldn’t that be great?! If you’re ever in SW Florida, please do stay a while and we’d love to entertain you. I hope to serve one day with you and Steve! That would be so fun. H for H is a wonderful organization and it’s so inspiring to see our former president, Mr. Carter, still such an active participant. The organization and people like you give families dignity and hope. I admire you and your husband. You’re good, good folks with big hearts! ❤

Prayers for you and your family!

I get to do some Carol-ing of my own soon in Israel. 😀

Habitat for Humanity has many opportunities for those who own an RV or anyone who just wants to help, even locally. The have ReStore (local donation centers, maybe even in your town or nearby) and countless ways to serve. H for H is a nationwide organization that focuses on providing housing for all, no matter who they are or what they believe.

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Fried Chicken and Dirty Dishes

Grandma’s kitchen.
Forgotten fried chicken.
Used, cold skillet.
Shimmering in congealed bacon fat.
Brown, yellow, orange matted carpet.
Clutter. Papers. Fly swatter. Plants.
Pepsi bottles.
Hum of the dingy fridge.
Greasy haze of low-light air.
Stale-flavored ice that can’t be cracked with mere teeth.
Dish upon dish.
So much that the sink disappears and one large dinner plate/utensil mound erupts from the countertop.
Dripping faucet plinking against tin.
Sad, somber, soft.
Dark, dirty, dull.
A small photo soaking in the developer of my brain.
Your watery image takes shape and fades quick.
You existed. I remember.

For My Cowgirl

Another repost poem. Happy birthday, Pencil Princess!

The picture on the post is Lilli wearing my dad’s old straw cowboy hat.


Before I had a girl,
I thought she’d steal my husband’s heart.
I was scared of sharing,
Expecting battle from the start.

What I didn’t know
Is that she stole my heart instead.
I wanted Dad to heap
Love and kisses on her head.

My daughter is my strength.
She’s taught me more than I could teach.
She’s my tough defender
When I’m sick or sad or weak.

She’s my will, she’s my power.
She’s my endless, eternal drive.
She’s the reason I get up.
She’s the reason I’m still alive.

Before I had a girl,
I didn’t understand
How much I’d love another girl.
I’m her biggest fan.


Love you, Cowgirl.

Sister

This is a repost of a poem for my daughter on her birthday tomorrow!
Happy 15, baby!


I wish I had a sister.
I have two of my own.
But they were always busy.
I was growing up alone.

I wish I had a sister
Who took the time to teach
How to love myself,
How to aim beyond my reach.

Or even how to brush my hair,
Set makeup on my cheek.
I wish I had a sister
Not a rival, so to speak.

I wish I had a sister.
One that loved being my friend.
I wish I had a sister.
Someone to count on ’til the end.

Someone to value me.
Someone to hold me close.
Someone to pull me up and in.
Someone who let their feelings show.

A woman to show the way.
A friend to hold my hand.
A person who deeply cared.
Someone to understand.

I never had a sister
Until I finally went through birth.
My daughter is all I could ever want,
Best sister on this earth.

Far Beyond

Friggin’ love this far out poem! Happy birthday Pencil Princess. Way to go on ur free verse.

Pencil Princess

One last poem from my creative writing class. I was feeling a bit overwhelmed by the prospect of writing poetry, since it’s the type of storytelling I’m least experienced with.

How does one compress their creativity,
   Convey stories of sunsets and starscapes and suffering,
      In succinct stanzas?

To adequately address the axiomatic truths,
   Uncover the answers to the anagrams presented by society,
      I’d need a thousand pages;

Profound poets across history, however,
   Could engage the imagination with exquisite eloquence
      In as few as six words.

Poems that breathe life into their readers;
   Verses that playfully dance through your mind
   Hours, days, and even years after being read;
   These things have always existed far beyond
      My realm of capability.

I’m not very active on WordPress. Find me on DeviantArt:
https://www.deviantart.com/prinnamon

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Seeker

Death as a child. Love it. Follow Pencil Princess! She’s got mad writing skills already at 15.

Pencil Princess

Another poem written for a creative writing course, “Seeker” is about death, a topic I have little direct experience with. I tried to offer a unique perspective on the subject.

Death is a child.
Death’s not alive.
Death never died;
Doesn’t know why

You’re all so upset,
You’re all so afraid.
Death wonders how come
You won’t come and play.

It’s hide and seek.
It’s a matter of time.
Ready or not,
You’re easy to find.

I’m not very active on WordPress. Find me on DeviantArt:
https://www.deviantart.com/prinnamon

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First Fall

Love this poem! My daughter. You can follow at Pencil Princess! She’ll be 15 tomorrow and she’s already got writing chops. 🙂 Proud of my girl.

Pencil Princess

One of two poems written for a creative writing course, “First Fall” is about my earliest memory from childhood: sitting upside down on the sofa, then falling and hitting my head on the carpeted floor. Hope you enjoy!

Upside down,
Ceiling’s my ground.
From my lips,
Joyful sounds.

Head leaning back,
Toes in the air
On the couch
Without a care.

The carpet above
(Or is it below?)
Will cushion my fall,
So down I go.

Betrayed by carpet’s
Pillowy promise.
Of all my memories,
I’ll keep this the longest.

I’m not very active on WordPress. Find me on DeviantArt:
https://www.deviantart.com/prinnamon

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Patched-up Monster

Run my fingers along these stitches
My slick, sick skin in pale, pink patches
Red scars, dark dreams and seams
Snagged-up tissue in small light catches

If I’m a patched-up monster
Then what does that make you?
You are my creator
Working in sin and sinew

I acknowledge my birth and life
But I wish you wouldn’t have bothered
Especially when you hate
That which you have fathered

I pity us, this reckless wreck
Wreaking wrong, prescribing pain
Spent my life to break your neck
On the hope of a rope in ending insane

You meant to make me perfect
But don’t know what you’re doing
You played around with delicate parts
Left this bloody monster in ruin

I survive, pieced from scraps
Forgotten flesh upon the floor
You die of loneliness
But I live to rise once more

Blank Page

When the world sharpens me to a
fighting, biting, writing point
.
You are the velvet, toothy paper on which I wrestle.

The soft place that stores my hurt and heart.

I’m sorry.
Thank you.

You never tear.
Even with my harsh words and unrestrained pain.

Your blank page is a fluffy-white cloud of kindness and medicine.