Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Super Bowl Sunday

super bowl xlix

It's Super Bowl Week leading up to the most anticipated professional football game of the new year. February 1, 2015 is Super Bowl Sunday! Are you excited? Are you prepared? Will you be watching on TV or will you be there, on the sidelines? What's the menu for the party? Hot wings, pretzels, Subway sandwiches, chocolate desserts, etc. What is your favorite part of the game? The half-time show or the commercials? The Super Bowl is an event that attracts millions. 

Now imagine this. February 1, 2015 is Super Roll Sunday. Although, it's an event that happens every day and you got your ticket the day you were born. You're a player in this game of life and death this Sunday. Your number is up. You made the Super Roll. Are you prepared? Have you planned for the big day? Many years you've watched others participate, but today, it's you on the field in the middle of the action. This event attracts thousands daily. Are you excited? Probably not. Everyone (even Jesus) wants to live another day or as the famous Bond movie implies "Die Another Day". Job 14:15-16 says "Thou shalt call, and I will answer thee: thou wilt have a desire to the work of thine hands. For now thou numberest my steps:..." What's the favorite part of Super Roll? Hearing THE LINE JUDGE say "Well done my good and faithful servant, enter thou into the joy of thy Lord!"

After we thank him and get up from a bowed position at Jesus' feet, I can see us now...stretching both arms straight up in total praise, closing our eyes in profound joy and whispering...

Enjoy the game,
The Happy Handicap

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

One Sweet Face of Rett Syndrome

understanding rett
It is my pleasure to introduce you to Ms. Ivy Raley, twin daughter of John and Shelly Raley. I have known Shelly since she was a child.  Ivy has struggled with gastrointestinal issues since birth. Two weeks ago, she was diagnosed with Rett Syndrome. Rett is a postnatal neurological disorder recognized in infancy and seen almost always in girls. Click this link to read more about the disabling condition.

Ivy has a twin sister, Isabel. Although she is not showing symptoms of the syndrome, Isabel will be tested for the condition also. Ivy is a beauty! Couldn't you just squeeze her? I'm unsure why she has struck such a chord in my heart. This baby is in my thoughts every hour on the hour. I can't imagine what demons her mom is fighting. I only know all too well the demons I used to fight being a special needs child. The worst one was the stark reality of I have four toes and virtually no feet and there's nothing I can do to change it. If you've never read my story,find it here.

I read Shelly's facebook posts every day, pray and agonize with her. Ivy is 19 months old but cannot walk or talk. She needs a feeding tube placed very soon for nutrition and medicine. The family is beginning to receive help from agencies and others to offset some of their medical expenses and day-to-day care for Ivy and the usual expenses for another baby. Shelly is their 24/7 caregiver. John works at Blue Bird Corporation.

When I read this post, I cried from the depths of my heart. Shelly writes: So, I received the Rett Syndrome Handbook today...medical equipment to monitor oxygen, suctions, etc. on Tuesday. I had a full blown hyperventilating panic attack today. I thought I was doing so good because I haven't cried in days. I didn't even want to open the book. I don't want this to be my life. I want it to be a bad dream....but it isn't. The first excerpt I read says the following and as heartbreaking as it is, it's also very, very true. "While some may see our daughters as powerless, we know of the enormous power they have to change us. She may not walk, yet she helps us walk taller. As she struggles to move, she moves many hearts. She may need to be fed, yet she feeds our spirit. We seek to understand her, yet in so doing, we begin to understand far more. She may not speak to us in words, but she speaks to us in the silent language of love. (Here's where I began to sob) She may never talk, but she will never talk back. She may never run, but she will never run away from home. She may need drugs to sustain life, but she will never use drugs to escape life. She may never use her hands for skills, but she will not use those hands for violence or evil...her eyes do more than see. They touch us. Every human emotion is  whispered, sung, shouted by her sparkling eyes. While there may be confusion in her head, make no mistake, there is a lot of understanding in her head...just because she can't show it, doesn't mean she doesn't know it. It's in there. She's in there. Keep looking. You'll see."

A Pampered Chef Fundraiser is setup at  If you feel inclined, please help this beautiful child be all she can be. 25% of your product purchase will be donated to the family. Please place your order by January 26. Thank you in advance for your generosity and kindness.

Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, .....

For Ivy,
The Happy Handicap

Saturday, January 17, 2015

5 Ways to Make your Man Happy for FREE!

happy for free

Happy Birthday to my Husband! 

He's 58 today. How do you make a man happy that has everything he wants? His past wishlist included:

  • a shop filled with every tool imaginable
  • the brand new Harley Davidson that seems to purr to him with a hypnotizing love noise
  • the restoration of his baby (a 1979 CJ5 Jeep he bought new). He tells everyone that he will get rid of me before that Jeep
  • the restoration of a 2000 Ultra Classic Harley Davidson. He had that motorcycle in so many pieces (down to the frame). I'm impressed he got it back together and sold it for a profit.
  • and then there's the GLOCK!
At this time in our lives, big stuff becomes less important and the small stuff becomes much more important. Here's my list of 5 ways to make your man happy for FREE! 
  1. Cook him a meal. Yes, the way to a man's happy place is through his stomach. Take-out is easier but it won't guarantee you the compliment that's sure to come whether he likes the food or not! Take-out doesn't say "I love you enough to take my time and use my hands to make something just for you." Click to Tweet: While woman may overlook small sentiments, men don't.
  2. Listen to his suggestions. I know you tune him out and hardly listen more than you'd care to admit. I'm guilty myself. I've learned over the years though my husband is very smart and ingenious if I will pay attention and simply listen to him.
  3. Change his sheets. Is there anything better than lying down on a clean set of sheets? Nope, didn't think so and neither does he! 5 minutes to a crisp, clean, relaxing haven. Clean sheets have their own special message whispering "Come here!"
  4. Agree with him. What a novel idea. Just in case you forgot what "agree" means, it is the direct opposite of argue. When I notice I'm disagreeing  or arguing, I check to make sure I'm wearing my hormone patch.
  5. Thank him. No matter how small the deed, compliment or thought, thank him for doing, noticing and acting on it.
Simple is good. Try these and see how it works for your man. You may make him happier than he's ever been for FREE!

Love my Steve,
The Happy Handicap

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Should Christians come with Warning Labels?

christian warning label

I received an email from a sweet friend last week. She forwarded a devotion from Holley Gerth entitled "Why Your Joy is Worth Fighting For Today."  You can read it by clicking on the title in red. As I was reading the devotion, I got an unusual yet close-to-truth thought. Should Christians come with a warning label? The words in her post that rattled this question from my brain are "We've all probably had well-meaning people say to us, "Just be joyful!" like it's an easy thing. As if the moment we decided to follow Jesus our lives would be cotton candy happy forever so we should just get with the program."

I must admit it is difficult to be joyful every day. I don't think we should so easily use "we are human" as an excuse, although we are broken and fallible. I think here's where the injustice lies. Christians (I want to call us Believers) understand other Christians. Folks who don't have their belief rooted in Christ don't understand when we aren't cotton candy happy forever. Therefore, should we come with a warning side effect label?

Some days our moods and what comes from our mouths might cause depression or nausea. We can get so mundane about our salvation, our speech causes drowsiness. We might be overly zealous causing agitation and nervousness. We can even cause confusion. These side effects occur in others not us. We think we are holding up our end of the joyful noise verse when others are wondering if they really want to trust our God with their lives.

Paul said there would be days like this. Romans 8:16-18 tells us "The Spirit itself beareth witness with our spirit, that we are the children of God: And if children, then heirs; heirs of God, and joint-heirs with Christ; if so be that we suffer with him, that we may be also glorified together. For I reckon that the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared with the glory which shall be revealed in us." There will be suffering if we live for Jesus.  There will also be glory. Let's purpose to suffer joyfully with no side effects for others and......
No warning label required!

Feeling dizzy,
The Happy Handicap

Monday, January 12, 2015

5 Things I Never Thought About Facing

Pride Mobility
This is a sponsored post for Pride Mobility.

We do life daily. Somewhat unsuspecting. The “American Pie Life” consists of a family of four and usually a dog. Two parents working toward a common goal hoping to grow old together. We are taught to think about things like home mortgages, family planning, budgeting for vacations, paying for Junior’s college tuition and retirement. What happens when retirement starts early due to health issues? I hope you find Five Things I Never Thought About Facing a beneficial use of your time. You may be facing some of the same tough questions.

  1. What if I become disabled? My husband and I both are disabled.  I am disabled due to ambulatory challenges. My husband has pulmonary fibrosis requiring oxygen. Needless to say, disability was not in our long-range plan. I’m guessing it’s not in yours either.
  2.  How can I maintain independence while disabled? An adult electric scooter provided by Pride Mobility Products is a convenient way to stay mobile. These versatile scooters are designed for indoor and outdoor maneuverability.
  3. What will I be able to do while disabled? Maintaining a consistent quality of life becomes a repeated question when faced with disability like our family. We are considering things like power lift chairs and portable wheelchair ramps. When simple every-day tasks become difficult, you will find many assistive devices available at Pride Mobility.
  4. How will I handle disability emotionally? A big advantage of getting fitted with mobility devices from Pride Mobility is ongoing support. The Pride Owner’s Club offers free membership to help you stay connected with other mobility users, share pictures and videos and keep up with current news. Staying connected with others is key to staying off the emotional roller coaster.
  5. Will my own pride allow me to use mobility devices? My husband finds it difficult to deal with people staring at his oxygen cannula. I think a mobility scooter is kind of cool. I agree, my pride almost won at Disney World deciding whether or not to use a scooter. My feet were so happy I put my pride aside.

It’s never an easy task to ask yourself the tough questions. I’m sharing these questions about Five Things I Never Thought About Facing so you can be somewhat prepared and less uncomfortable if they are staring you in the face tomorrow.

Feeling confident with Pride Mobility,
The Happy Handicap