Let Me Introduce You to a Few of My “Friends”

When I was diagnosed with cancer five years ago, one of the things people asked me was whether or not I was really okay. I blogged about it, I shared my story with others as I was living through it, and I took advantage of the opportunity to spend more quality with the people I loved.

Ironically, during that time, I laughed more than I cried. I felt God’s presence from the very beginning so I was really okay. But my friends and family didn’t always think so…which is understandable. When someone you love is diagnosed, the word cancer brings out all kinds of emotions, and usually, sadness rings the loudest.

One of things that helped me get through that experience was reading. I read blogs regularly, and my favorite types of books to read are non-fiction – ideally faith-based non-fiction. As soon as I was diagnosed, I started subscribing to even more devotional emails than usual so my email inbox could be infused with a little bit of Jesus and inspiration throughout the day. Because the bloggers and authors were a part of my daily life, they helped me through the cancer experience. In my mind, though, they became my friends.

I saw a meme the other day that said, “I saw my boyfriend today. And by boyfriend, I mean the guy I have been internet stalking secretly for months. So today, in the spirit of that meme, I want to tell you about a few friends of mine who have actually made a huge difference in my life…most of them via YouTube.

Continue reading “Let Me Introduce You to a Few of My “Friends””

Ways to Show Love This Month. Right Now. Start Today.

One of my favorite topics to write about is love. In part, it’s because I know that as humans, it is one of the commandments God has bestowed upon us. I also know that love is not a feeling or an emotion, but rather a choice. Love is part of our greater purpose for you and for me in how we relate to each other and the universe and the whole wide world.

It’s just that serious. Especially during the month of February. Trust me though, this post is about God’s love and a general love related to humankind. I am not talking romance…yet. Even though I truly believe it’s not too different because that kind of love is also a choice as well.

Just so we’re clear, I’m not talking about love as a feeling where we see everything in terms of hearts and romance and lilies and rose petals and Chicago-style pizza. I’m talking love as a verb. An action. A decision to wholeheartedly make someone’s life’s easier. A decision to speak up, to change things, to impact the world. Continue reading “Ways to Show Love This Month. Right Now. Start Today.”

Seven Habits for An Outstanding Life

Let’s talk about habits, shall we? There are good ones, there are bad ones, there are fun ones, and there are the ones that produce shameless guilt. As I’ve gotten older, though, I have found a few habits that are now crucial to my functioning as a productive member of society.

So that we are clear, the term “productive member of society” means that I can function with a smile on my face, not feel so overwhelmed by life that I want to give up, relatively anxiety free, and know – without a doubt – that no matter what happens during the day, I am covered in God’s love, grace, and mercy.

Oh trust me, friends, I know the list is above is a tall order. But if we shoot for the moon, we’ll land among the stars, right? Continue reading “Seven Habits for An Outstanding Life”

If This Lemon Could Talk

Hello. My name is Toni and I’m a mechanic. Well, not really but I had so many car problems within a three-month span last fall that I could have been a mechanic.

In case you were thinking that you missed something, car mechanics is not my passion, nor my special assignment from God, nor my calling. It was, however, a thorn in my side.

From July to October, my car stopped on three different highways in Dallas while I was driving. First it was the radiator, then it was the entire engine, then it was the radiator again, then the lock on the trunk refused to unlatch, eventually the microchip in the key that controls the ignition stopped working, and ultimately the transmission clip came loose but when it was supposedly fixed the car could no longer drive in reverse. Continue reading “If This Lemon Could Talk”

Social Media is My Life (And I Wouldn’t Have It Any Other Way)

In my 45 years of living on this earth, there is one subject that is absolutely taboo in a discussion with my parents…and it’s probably not what you think. We can talk about sex (even though I’d really prefer not to), we can talk about my dating life, we can even talk about my kids’ dating lives, but the one thing we will not address is social media.

Social media has been a strain on our relationship. They can’t seem to understand why I love it. And they definitely, without a doubt, have huge disdain at the fact that some of their peers on active on social media.

In the words of my father, “Twitter is the devil.” Continue reading “Social Media is My Life (And I Wouldn’t Have It Any Other Way)”