Monthly Archives: July 2014


“You’re a remarkably spiritual soul. The true meaning of your life is defined by your faith and deep connection with God. As you know already, this road is not a particularly easy one. It’s full of bumps, mountains, and valleys. But you’ve held on long enough, and there’s nothing stopping you from reaching what you’re called to do!” (God’s Grace)

Just thought you needed to “hear” this today.

GOD is Good. GOD is Great!!


“Nothing you confess could make me love you less.” —Jesus


Chapter 13— A Good Mourning

Good morning and welcome to my Monday Blog!!

Since I started my Monday Blog, Mondays have taken on a whole new meaning for me—I LOVE MONDAYS!!

I hope you all had a wonderful weekend and are looking ahead to a great new week!! Let’s ALL expect rainbows and miracles; they’re out there, that’s for sure! Shoot, I’m a miracle, myself…I mean the fact that I can sit here and BLOG to you every Monday, is truly a MIRACLE—seriously!! Five years ago if someone had told me I’d be sitting here “talking” to you via a BLOG website?…about a BOOK I wrote?…well, let’s just say I probably would have said “Yeah, right…whatever…uh, what’s a BLOG, anyway?…and ME, write a BOOK?…don’t ya think that’s a little waaaay far-fetched?!…like, you’re crazy, dude!”

See, I’ve learned that our personal plans for us and GOD’s plans for us, are quite possibly NEVER the same plans. I’ve also learned that if I TRUST HIM with every aspect of my Life, I can do just about anything that I put my heart and mind into. Key words here: TRUST HIM.

Bottom line here: I am a Miracle (and I know it!).

My philosophy on Miracles: They are NOT coincidences. GOD doesn’t do “coincidences”, He does Miracles…

and in this next chapter of my book, you’re going to read about several Miracles.


Excerpts and Thoughts: “That Melvin Bray”

Chapter 13 – A Good Mourning

“Hope says to us constantly, ‘Go on, go on,’ and leads us to the grave.”

—Francoise de Mainenon, French queen

“It was no time at all before Daddy was knocking on aunt Lucy’s back door. She asked all of us to go into the living room while she told Daddy about Mother.

Ali picked up Fay, and we all did as we were told. Lu closed the door and turned on the television to distract us.

PC took Paddy out the front door and headed out to Aunt Lucy’s vegetable garden in the side yard. I could see them from the living-room window. P. C. had his arm on Paddy’s shoulder as they walked down the individual rows of Aunt Lucy’s well-groomed little garden. At one point, they sat down and disappeared among the tall sunflowers. P.C. was a good big brother and Paddy trusted him.

Lee took her broken heart into Aunt Lucy’s room, threw herself across the bed, landed facedown in the pillows, and quietly began to cry her eyes out, like a little baby. Lu went in the bedroom and lay down beside her, and eventually the little lion fell asleep from exhaustion.

Ali and I played with Lainey and Fay, and although the television was on, we could hear most of the conversation between Aunt Lucy and Daddy.

It was quite obvious that she was furious that Daddy had never gone home on Friday after work, nor checked on his pregnant wife and eight children, who had no phone and no car, for three days and nights. Adding fuel to the fire, since Friday, Mother had been rushed to the hospital and had delivered the baby and died, and Daddy had known absolutely nothing about it until Aunt Lucy had tracked his sorry ass down that morning. Yep he was the MAN.

I couldn’t see either of them, but Aunt Lucy’s voice was strong and powerful. She was on a roll. She had so much anger bottled up inside her toward Daddy that I guess once she got started, she just couldn’t stop. She had just lost the one person on Earth she loved and cherished more that her own life, and she blamed Daddy for that loss.

Frankly, Aunt Lucy was probably the only person on Earth Daddy actually respected, or maybe she intimidated him. Either way, when Aunt Lucy spoke, Daddy listened. When she finished, he left.

Our Daddy didn’t say one single word to any of us kids, not even Lu. He just got in the old Chevy and

drove of, just like any other day. Just way too much responsibility for ole Chill, I guess—a dead wife, a new baby he hadn’t even seen yet, and eight other children who had just lost their mother.

I can hear Daddy now: “Man, I need a drink!”

At almost eight o’clock in the evening, the sun finally set on that blue Monday. Now we would all finally be forced to lie down, close our eyes, and pray it was all just a bad dream.

Wednesday rose with an early morning shower. I actually loved the rain, especially when I was happy. If I’d had to choose, though, I preferred Mr. Sun on my less-happy days and Miss Rain on my happier days. That day was much like the previous few. Aunt Lucy did her best to keep us busy and hopeful. After lunch, she and P.C. went to the hospital to visit with Dr. Cheek and baby Mae and tie up a few other loose ends in preparation for the funeral.

Afterword, we spent the rest of the evening much like the evening before—all together and all dreading the inevitable tomorrow.

‘Today, my friends, our Lillian is beginning her everlasting life and as we read in Psalm 23:6, “shall dwell in the House of the Lord forever.”‘

For some reason, at that very moment, I glanced at the clock by the door to the choir and noticed it was precisely 3:33 pm. I was reminded of Lee’s vision at the hospital—an omen perhaps?

It must have been, since I don’t believe in coincidences; however, I do believe in miracles.

Pastor Meyers then closed the service with a prayer, and we all left the chapel to attend the burial service in the church cemetery.”


I’m SAD. I wrote the book, I’ve read it a hundred times, but still can’t get through this chapter without crying my eyes out. Oh brother!

Remember, these paragraphs are just excerpts from the chapters each week. This particular chapter is long and another tough one for me; however, it’s also filled with much love, kindness, humility, forgiveness, and laughter. I wrote the best funeral I could. WHAT?!

The phrase “DON’T BE AFRAID” is written 365 times in the Bible. That’s a daily reminder from GOD to live every day being FEARLESS. It works, trust me—I had to embrace it daily just to finish my book.

So, here we are again—another big opportunity to live the next week being FEARLESS, kind, non-judgmental, full of hope, prayer and forgiveness. It’s a tall order…I know…and we’re only “human”…oh come on, human, shuman! We can do anything when our hearts and minds are focused UP!

“Just think of it: You are known and remembered by the most majestic, powerful and glorious Being in the universe!You are loved by the King of infinite space and everlasting time—GOD!” —Dieter F. Uchtdorf

GOD is Good. GOD is Great!!



“I am thankful for my struggle, because without it, I would not have stumbled across my strength” — Author Unknown

Life Is Too Short!!

Happy Monday, September 9, 2019

Welcome to my Monday Blog, dear Friends!

My thoughts are on the present today. The past is just that – it’s past, gone, done-with, over!! The best thing to do about the past is simply learn from it and leave it there. Now tomorrow is a different story. We can do something about tomorrow by not making the same mistakes of today.

Ever hear of “New Year’s Resolutions”? Surely the past is what the New Year is for; however, we don’t have to wait until January 1 every year to let go and send our pasts walking and begin living in the present…do we?

There comes a time in our lives, when we must walk away from all the drama and negativity. Folks who create disharmony simply because sadly, that’s them, are they’re just not good for us, are they? it’s a great idea to surround ourselves with people who make us smile, laugh, and feel good about ourselves. Forget the bad, focus on the good. Don’t live in the past, the future is so much brighter if we just open our eyes and hearts and choose happiness. Don’t be a whiner, either – how about we just spread the JOY at every opportunity?! Ya know, I have a good friend who has such a loving heart and is quite charming…I’ve noticed over the years that when even one or more are engaged by this friend, its always the same: I’ll observe an on-going conversation and when this person leaves the conversation, the others remark about how  wonderful my friend is. Seriously, it never fails. This friend is a great role model for us all because she spreads joy and laughter wherever she goes. Another interesting thing about this friend of mine…she’s lived in a wheel chair for over thirty years, having been stricken with MS as a young wife and Mother of three…Oh, and yes, I know what you’re thinking: ‘Does she really just roll-up in her wheel chair to a conversation wherever she goes and an every opportunity?’

YEP, She does!!! Hallelujah!!

Jesus has already made happiness possible for us all, and it’s up to us to choose to live in that happiness, harmony and love. Love the people who treat you right and pray for those who don’t. Our Gift of Life is too short to be anything but joyous and grateful! It’s also a good idea to learn to laugh at ourselves and grab every moment of happiness possible, as we live our precious gift.  Falling down is part of Life, getting back up is Living that Life!!

Life is too short…let’s remember what Snoopy said to Charlie Brown above about living…

YES!! Happy Monday, my dear Friends!

GOD is Good! GOD is Great!! Always!!!

I love you,

My spiritual thriller “That Melvin Bray” is available on Amazon



Chapter 12 – Charles Phillip Chillton II – “Chill”

Happy Good Morning to you and welcome to my Monday Blog – You know I love it!!

Most times when I first start blogging on Monday mornings, I’m so filled with events or experiences which took place over the weekend, that I find it’s hard for me to focus on the job at hand. I want to tell you all about what happened over the weekend and/or my kids, the grandchildren, my incredible this, or my awesome that, you know what I mean. I guess I’ll just have to leave it at that for now and come back here mid-week or so and do my braggin’.

Okay, except for these two little things: my youngest granddaughter, Bridget (5), told her Mommy (my daughter), that “grandma is very funny, but PaPa is reeeeally funny” now I’ve got to work on getting funnier; but then, yesterday, as I was hanging upside down on the jungle gym with my middle granddaughter, Lily (7), she said “grandma, you’re the funniest grandma I know”…so there!!

This week in “That Melvin Bray”, we get more than a glance at Maggie’s Daddy –

Excerpts & Thoughts:

Chapter 12 – Charles Phillip Chillton II – “Chill” –

“I think it must be written somewhere, that the virtues of mothers shall be visited on their children, as well as the sins of their fathers.” – Charles Dickens

“CHARLES PHILLIP CHILLTON II had many names, depending on who was talkin’ about him.
Mother called him Charles—if he was sober.
Lu called him Dr. Jekyll if he was sober and Mr. Hyde if he if was drinking.
Lee called him Monster—sober or not.
The rest of us kids just called him Daddy.
Aunt Lucy referred to him as “your daddy,” as in “Have you seen or heard from your daddy?”

Everyone else, including his siblings, referred to him as “Chill-Out”.
Growing up he had been intense, easily distracted, and always in a hurry. He
couldn’t seem to ground himself and had no inclination toward self-discipline.

As time went by though, he would be known simply as Chill. He was the oldest of seven children—three boys and four girls. He was named after his father, who was a minister. Yeah, hard to believe that, huh?

His younger brothers, Weston and Harrison also became ministers when they grew up. Granddaddy Chillton probably wondered where he had gone wrong when it came to Chill, but I say two out of three ain’t bad, right?

Sometimes, though, the preacher’s kids could turn out to be the wildest—like Buddy Allred in high school. That boy was just full of I don’t know what, but he was full of it!

Granddaddy and Grandma Chillton were kind, gentle folks of modest means. Like Grandma O’Malley, Grandma Chillton died before I was a year old, so I had no memories of her either, but Mother spoke of her often and loved her very much.

Daddy was the black sheep of the family. He was reckless and impetuous early on and wouldn’t listen to anyone. He was movie-star handsome and confident. I think his looks went to his head, along with the alcohol, of course. Granddaddy Chillton always told him that the good Lord had really blessed him, but he was too arrogant to appreciate it. Humility was not Daddy’s strong suit, but Mother had enough for both of the of them, unfortunately.

When my parents met, Mother was only seventeen and he was almost nineteen. She was captivated by him and she fell madly in love with him. They married within the year and a year later, Lu was born. They were just young, in love and in desperate need of a change in their lives.

Aunt Lucy begged Mother not to marry Daddy, but it was no use, so Mother insisted Aunt Lucy come and live with them once they were married and settled. Aunt Lucy agreed at the time, for Mother’s sake, but changed her mind later, saying she felt she needed to stay with Papa.

The truth was that there was no way Aunt Lucy was going to live in the same house with Daddy. On a soul level, she knew him, but it would a long time and several children later before Mother would know him.

Daddy joined the army right away and was gone only two years. The word was that he was given a medical discharge, but it was probably a typo and should have been a mental discharge. Sadly, those two years while he was gone, were probably the best years of their marriage.

Of course, Mother had gotten busy right away having babies. I was the sixth baby and still an infant when Mother first went to work in the textile mill. Until then, Daddy was the breadwinner, if you could call it that, but all that changed when Mother got a job, leaving six children at home, including a six-month-old baby—me.

It was at that time when dear Lu would start her new job as surrogate mother. That was probably why Lu and I were always so close. She really had to step in for Mother with me at six months, and she truly was a surrogate mother to me.

Once Mother had a job with a paycheck, Daddy took full advantage of the situation—and her absence. Yeah, he was an alcoholic most of he time, and she was absent most of the time. Daddy’s philosophy was filled with presumption and delusion and his reign of terror became scarier for the Chillton kids once Mother jot a job.


As I revisit these chapters each week, of course it takes me back to a very sad time in my life, and now and then, I’ll hit a few lows as I write the words; however, upon finishing the book last year, thank the good Lord, He has shown me the way to truly live my precious gift of Life better, and how to use my past as a tool for doing just that. One of the ways I accomplish this, is that I focus on living ONE DAY At A TIME…

“But see first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. So do not worry about tomorrow; for tomorrow will care for itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. ” – Matthew 6:33-34

I’m siting here with my “Life is Good” hat on…and Life IS good. Hallelujah!!

Next week, Chapter 13—A Good Mourning
“Hope says to us constantly, ‘Go on, go on,’ and leads us to the grave.”
—Francoise de Mainenon, Frence queen

Until then, here’s me, wishing you an incredible week in every way possible and I pray You and your Life will be an inspiration to all those you encounter along your way.

GOD is Good. GOD is Great!!


“Your Life is your message to the world. Make sure it’s inspiring.”
(Love & Life)

“Smiling for someone is sweet, but MAKING someone smile is the BEST!”
(Women of Christ)

What’s Your Problem?

July 16, 2014

Here’s a little something to think about, if you choose to…

If you’re in the habit of blaming others for your attitude, behavior, thoughts or words, make a conscious attempt to stop. We’re all in control of our OWN actions.

Try this for a change:

Humility, guts and forgiveness (yourself and others), and a willingness to improve and change your Life for something better.

“Misery loves company”…remember that one? Is this YOU?

Why not try walking by faith? It produces the resilience we need to come back even stronger when facing Life’s challenges and disappointments. And we ALL have them.

Now if you’re in denial, lying to yourself (and others), whatever…then this isn’t for you and I’ll pray for you, because that’s what I’m expected to do.

GOD is Good. GOD is Great!!


“When the devil tells a lie, he’s speaking his native language because he’s a liar and the inventor of the lie.” – John 8:44

Chapter 11 – The Twins

July 14, 2014

Good morning, everybody!! What a pretty Monday it is! I went out on the deck, listened to the birds, watched the squirrels and chipmunks chasing each other around and through the bushes and thought, ‘What a way to live’, such freedom … then I realized, I’m just as free as they are. Hallelujah!!

So last week, beginning on Friday, July 4th, a whirl-wind of events began to unfold and by Tuesday, July 8th, my family had experienced three deaths, one wedding and the loss of my younger cat (of two), “Sweetie’.

It just kept on coming! But what d’ya do? YOU KEEP ON GOING.

By now, I’m quite acquainted with death, however, the pain and emptiness I feel is always there when it happens, even though I may have even been expecting it; it still hurts like crazy!! My Mother has been gone now for seventeen years, but sometimes when I think of her, I still break down and cry because I miss her so much. This is life and this is normal. Mourning and grieving for our loved ones is what we do. However, God will step in and come to our rescue, for the Bible says:

“Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” – Matthew 5-4

… and I say, Hallelujah, thank you, Lord!!

My personal message here, is simply to tell you that when we’re faced with the loss of a loved one, and we think we can’t go on, we can; we can, because we are never alone. God is always here for us. Just talk to Him. XO

Today, from my book, “That Melvin Bray”, I’m going to introduce you to “The Twins”, Lillian and Lucy, and you’re gonna love them, I’m sure!


Thoughts and Excerpts –

Chapter 11 – The Twins:

“God doesn’t give you the people you want; He gives you the people you NEED…to help you, to hurt you, to leave you, to love you and to make you into the person you were meant to be.” – Unknown

“In 1928, twins Lillian Fay and Lucy Mae O’Malley were born. They had two older brothers, Rory and Quinn. Rory was eight years older and Quinn six, so basically the twins only had each other as playmates since their brothers were much older. Papa and Grandma O’Malley separated when the twins were only four years old. Grandma left the children and Papa and went back to her family to live with them. Grandma O’Malley—Mae, as she was known—was a beautiful woman but was in fragile health.

Papa, a.k.a. Jesse O’Malley, was a tobacco farmer, and Rory and Quinn stayed with him and the twins and worked the tobacco fields with him until their late twenties, when they both got married and started families of their own. While growing up, they lived a meager life way out in the country and typical of that time, had no running water in their farmhouse; instead, they drank water from a spring about a quarter mile from the house.

At age five, the twins contracted typhoid fever from the spring water. This disease was serious, of course, considering the times and the limitations of medical treatment. The twins were sick for over a year but finally recovered. However, Lucy was not as fortunate as Lillian, and she would suffer various health issues for the rest of her life.

To make Lucy’s life even more challenging, another incident occurred shortly after they turned seven. She and Lillian were in the house one evening, cooking dinner for Papa and the boys, who were outside chopping wood and hauling water from the spring.

Yep, I said cooking. To say they all had a pretty hard life was a big, whopping understatement!

Anyway, a large pot of water and potatoes were boiling on the old woodstove, and Lucy was standing by the stove, reaching for another pot nearby, as Lillian was setting the table. Somehow the pot of boiling water fell over onto Lucy. She was scalded from her knees to her little toes. Lillian ran out and got Papa and the boys. Rory and Quinn wrapped Lucy in a blanket, and they all jumped in Papa’s old truck and drove thirty-five miles to the nearest hospital. Lucy was in pretty bad shape. During her recovery, she endured several skin grafts on both legs, and she didn’t walk again for over a year. She spent eight months in the hospital, and Grandma O’Malley and Lillian stayed at the hospital with her as much as possible.

One disturbing part of their upbringing was that the twins—my mother, Lillian, and Aunt Lucy—had a mother, my Grandma O’Malley, who was born into a family of considerable means. However, apparently Grandma’s parents didn’t feel any responsibility toward her four children, their own grandchildren! They stood by an watched them live in squalor-type conditions and endure great hardships, just to teach Grandma and Papa a lesson.

Shame on them! As it turned out, Mother got to go to school, but Aunt Lucy made it only to the seventh grade before quitting due to her chronic poor health. She absolutely loved school, and Mother was just s sad as Aunt Lucy when it became apparent that Aunt Lucy wouldn’t get to continue school.

As life went on, however, what made Aunt Lucy different also made her exceptional. She suffered and toiled for years with various acute and serious illnesses, and she constantly endured chronic pain.

She would tease us kids sometimes by saying, “Remember what they say about judging a book by the cover: looks can be deceiving, because this little ole body is hiding one good-looking woman on the inside!”

Disease and illness might have broken Aunt Lucy’s body, but they sure didn’t break her independent spirit. Somehow she could find the joy in the midst of some serious trials. She had an enormous respect for life and a willingness to simply live, which was an inspiration to us all. She and Mother loved each other something powerful, and there was a bond between the two of them that no doubt still exists today.”


Next week, you’ll get much better acquainted with Lizzy’s daddy, in
Chapter 12 – Charles Phillip Chillton II, aka “Chill”, and let me tell ya, he’s a trip!! When I was little, if anyone asked me what scared me the most, I’d whisper, “my daddy.”

My prayer for you ALL this week, is that if you don’t have PEACE in your heart, you’ll find out why.

GOD is Good.GOD is Great!!


NOTE: I’ve heard that to thrive in Life you need three bones:

1. A Wishbone
2. A Backbone
3. A Funny Bone

The Haves and The Have Nots

Monday, September 30, 2019

Hello my dear Friends. Happy Monday!!

We have a new and exciting week ahead of us…that is if we choose it to be exciting. Right?! No matter what’s in front of us, what twists or turns we might need to navigate through or around, if we’re breathing and in half-decent health, we might consider living our gift of life with as much Joy as possible! Maybe join the “Haves” as opposed to the “Have Nots”. 

In many cases when we want to have something else but God has a better plan for us, we need to stop and listen. Oh we pray, and pray and pray for that new “have”…we’re so focused on it that we lose sight of what God’s Will for us may be. Before we know it, we’re getting the silent treatment. We think, “God what am I doing wrong? I’m praying and praying, but you must not be listening! Where are You, God? I’ve never heard silence quite this loud!!”

No matter what’s going on in our lives, we would benefit greatly if we were to stop every once in a while and take inventory of all that we do have and give thanks. If we put our faith and trust in our heavenly Father, we can never be a member of the Have Nots. Further more, I say, “who wants to be, not ME!!”

My prayer for us all this week is that we’ll spend more time thanking God for all the prayers He has already answered. In doing so, we put our faith and trust in Him, and we will never be members of the Have Nots! Never!!

Hush, Listen and wait on the Lord. He knows all our needs. He knows ALL.

GOD is Good! GOD is Great!! Always!!!

I Love You,

My spiritual thriller, “That Melvin Bray” is available on Amazon


CHAPTER 10 — Lillian Fay O’Malley

Monday July 7, 2014

Here’s to a great Monday to you all and a new week worth living the best you can… have at it!!

This past week and up until today, has been like a roller coaster ride! As of this am, my family/relatives have been dealing with three of our loved ones, who have been in various stages of illnesses for a while now. As of today, all three have been called onto that Mansion in the Sky. The Lord gives and the Lord takes in His own sweet time and “now” is His time for these three loved ones.

I thank Him for the time I have had with them and praise Him for the gifts they were to so many who knew them and loved them well.

Hallelujah and Amen.


Thoughts & Excerpts:

Chapter 10 – Lillian Fay O’Malley

“A mother is she who can take the place of others but whose place no one else can take.” – Cardinal Mermillod

“Two years later, in March of 1955, our Easter Sunday was a far cry from that sad prior Easter Sunday. We had no funerals to attend or perform, neither animal nor human, thank God!

The next Friday, Daddy went to work that morning and Mother that afternoon, as usual. Ole Chill finally got home about nine-thirty that night, and much to no one’s surprise, he was drinking. Two years of sobriety down the hatch.

“Well at least Mother only has a few weeks to go before she can take her maternity leave from work, and then she’ll be home with us all the time,” Lee said.

“So what? She can’t do anything with him; he’s as bad to her as he is to us.”
P.C. sighed.

Lu was quiet. She was so disappointed in Daddy.
By then, it was a little after eleven 0’clock, and they heard a car coming up the old dirt drive to the house.

“Damn him—he’s back!” Lee the Cusser yelled.
Lu went to the kitchen window and peeked through the curtain.
“No, it’s not him; it’s Mother, ” she said.

They opened the back door and watched Mother as she got out of her ride’s car and walked up the through the pear trees toward them.
“What’s wrong?” Mother asked.

“It’s Daddy,” Lu told her, and then she began to verbally paint a Dorian Gray picture of what had just happened with the moral leper, Mr. Hyde.

Daddy didn’t make it home again until Sunday afternoon. While he looked like one of the homeless under the old Rock Store Bridge, thankfully, he was sober. He didn’t talk to any of us but instead went upstairs and straight to bed. Mother followed him upstairs and closed their bedroom door.

She came back downstairs a few minutes later and handed Lu the car keys. She told P.C. to round up us kids. Apparently, Daddy had lost his paycheck in a poker game. He told her he was sorry and promised he’d get it back. Yeah, sure ya will big man.

Well, we all got in the car, and Mother gave Lu directions to a little brown house in the woods. When we got there, we saw several cars casually parked around the yard among the trees. Mother had been there once before with Daddy to pay a gambling debt. Lu parked the car, Mother and P.C. got out and walked up to the front door, and Mother knocked. A few minutes later, she knocked again. The door opened, and a really big, burly bearded man in overalls was sanding there.

It was obvious Mother was pregnant, and he glanced over and saw all of us all packed in the Chevy, which he knew belonged to Chill Chillton. He recognized Mother, smiled politely, and asked her what he could do for her. She was very calm and resolute as she told him she needed him to give her Chill’s paycheck back. He looked at her and P.C. and then glanced back over at the car once more. He had a serious look on his face and told Mother he would be right back. He closed the door, and Mother and P.C. just stood there.

A while later, Big Burly came back to the door, and he handed Mother Daddy’s paycheck—a big, whopping $120. But back then, that amount of money went a long way, as Mother would say. She took the check from BB, looked at it carefully, and looked back at BB. She smiled at him and thanked him, and then she and P.C. walked back to the car. They got in, Lu started the engine, and we went straight home.

We found Daddy still asleep—oh, happy day—and he didn’t get up until the next morning for work. Hey, just another lovely Sunday afternoon at the Chilltons’.

A few weeks later, a Saturday morning in mid-April, Lu and Ali were busy in the kitchen, making breakfast. Mother was upstairs resting because she was still working every day, and at six and a half months pregnant, she was beginning to tire more easily. She had planned to continue working for six more weeks because we certainly needed the money.

Daddy and P.C. were outside with Mr. Jennings, working on the old barn. Aunt Lucy had come over and was upstairs with Mother, and they were playing with Fay, who had just turned three. Lu asked Lee to go outside and call Daddy and P. C. in for breakfast. Lee, Paddy and I set the table and Aunt Lucy came downstairs with Fay. We all gathered at the big, round table in the kitchen, and Aunt Lucy told us that Mother would be down shortly and we should go ahead with breakfast.

Apparently, Daddy’s recent paycheck caper and “oops I fell off the wagon and I can’t get up” weekend had had a profound effect on Mother. As I think back now, I believe that the fact that she was pregnant again caused her for the first time to really see Daddy for what he had become, and she was noticeably indifferent to him. It wasn’t what she said to him but, rather, what she didn’t say to him.

“Today we call that estranged, right, Dr. Shrink, MD?” I said to Lizzy.
“Back then, we called it a good sign. Finally!”


Next week we’ll find out about “The Twins”. Two awesome women, Lillian Fay O’Malley and Lucy Mae O’Malley. These two suffered life in uniquely different ways, however, their enormous love for God and each other, created an unbreakable bond, allowing them to recognize the true Joy in Life. Lillian and Lucy counted their blessings each and every day and lived their lives with an attitude of gratitude.

Born only a few minutes apart, these two little girls were quite a pair!!
Next week!

I began today’s blog with death, but prefer to close it with Life. In “That Melvin Bray”, we read about death and the sadness it brings on those it affects; we also read about our greatest gift—Life, and the Joy IT can bring when we embrace it.

I choose Life…but at some point, death will inevitably take precedent. This is God’s perfect plan and that’s just the way it is—for ALL of us.

Until then, though, cherish your greatest gift and live IT the best you can. Why not? Life can be so wonderful when we choose to live it with an Attitude of Gratitude. Just do it.

GOD is Good. GOD is Great!


When something bad happens to you, you have three choices:

Let it define you,
Let is destroy you,
Let it strengthen you…

and remember: whether you think you can or you think you can’t, you’re probably right.