Saturday, August 30, 2014

Soul Vitamins...

Ann Voskamp always does a post on Saturdays called: Only the Good Stuff: Multivitamins for Your Weekend.  It really is "good stuff"- refreshing and uplifting.

So I decided to do my own take on a few things that felt like "vitamins for my soul" this week. 

It was an "impromptu" invite, to gather for book club the other night.  To get 7 women to say yes, with barely a day's notice?  Pretty amazing.  

So despite my nausea, and general yuckiness, I decided I could feel sick at home, alone, or at least have a night filled with laughs, and stories, and savor some really good friendships.

And you have to giggle a bit at the fact we hadn't read a book to discuss.  It was such a great night!

I found this tiny feather, clinging by the tiniest thread, to the window of my car.  Despite the rain shower that had just down poured and the wind that was making it hard to photograph, that feather wasn't moving from its little perch.

I am always clinging to hope, and this says to me, hope is clinging right back.

I am mentally preparing for a PET scan my insurance company approved for me in the coming weeks.  It'll be the first time we've looked at my entire body to see where cancer might be active. If we do find activity, a new course of treatment will likely ensue- a chemo of some sort.  So I am cherishing my growing hair, eyebrows, nails, etc.

I was given the gift of a "fitbit" awhile ago.  So today we got it charged and I am logging my steps.  I am actively seeking to drop whatever weight I can before my next infusion!  

Plus, I've been back on a green smoothie kick.  Spinach, kale, romaine lettuce, blueberries, almond milk, stevia, and a banana.  Super yum!  

On Facebook, my friend, Julie, challenged me to list 10 books that have stayed with me in some way and tag people to do the same. The Rules: Don't take more than a few minutes and do not think too hard. They don't have to be the "right" books or great works of literature, just ones that you remember in some way. Then tag a number of friends including me so I can see your list. 
"A Prayer for Owen Meany," by John Irving
"Cutting for Stone," by Abraham Verghese
"A New Earth," by Eckhart Tolle
"The Shack," by William Young
"The Outsiders," by S.E. Hinton
"One Thousand Gifts," by Ann Voskamp
"Are you there God? Its Me Margaret." by Judy Blume
"Of Mice and Men," by John Steinbeck
"The Catcher in the Rye," by J. D. Salinger
"The Middle Place," by Kelly Corrigan
"The Book Thief," by Markus Zusak
"Anne Frank: The Diary of a Young Girl," by Anne Frank

These were my books.  I can't believe I forgot to add "To Kill a Mockingbird," by Harper Lee.  I loved seeing how many people jumped in and provided lists of their top books.

Do any of you have a few books or a top 10 that you'd like to share?  

Happy Labor Day weekend!  Hope you find some "Soul Vitamins" too! 


  1. When you drop that weight... drop it my way, I could use a few pounds. I'm having a tough time hanging onto it.

    1. Ugh- so sorry to hear that. I went way down in weight when I was first diagnosed- so much nausea when I was on the study drug. But then I had my ovaries out and started the arimidex which shuts down all estrogen and now I can't maintain a normal weight for me. I pray that changes soon for you!

  2. Coming here is always a good soul vitamin. Hope all goes well with your infusion.

  3. I did that list on FB too.. and.. Anne Frank and To Kill a Mockingbird were on it! I also read some of the others. I think you would also enjoy A Tree Grows in Brooklyn and Glass Castle!

    I kindof hate that you're trying to -lose- weight. But I understand the reason. :-( Wishing and praying for the best possible PET scan results.

    1. I've definitely read The Glass Castle and I think I have A Tree Grows in Brooklyn in a stack someone gave to me not too long ago. I am anxious to go look again now.

      Only a few pounds of weight- if I can just keep it down under the limit I'd feel better. Plus I can't afford much in the way of new clothes- so smaller is better :)

  4. Exquisite post, Vicky. Somehow I'd missed Ann's encouragement to have Soul Vitamins. Love it! Love you!

    1. Thank you, Julie, - it's her Saturday posts- she calls it "Multivitamins for your weekend." But it feels like for the "soul" works too :)

  5. My dear friend,
    One soul vitamin for me is seeing the gorgeously outrageous sunflowers on your blog and reading your wisdom. Another is being with my precious grandchildren.

    And sweet friend, the photograph of that clinging feather, after a downpour that could have dislodged it...well, it touched my heart (along with Emily Dickinson's quote)

    And now, ten books that have stayed with me in some way:
    1) Tuesdays with Morrie by Mitch Albom
    2) The Four Agreements by Don Miguel Ruiz
    3) Hotel on the Corner of Bitter and Sweet by Jamie Ford
    4) Traveling Mercies: Some Thoughts on Faith by Ann Lamott
    5) To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
    6) Mere Christianity by CS Lewis
    7) Daring Greatly by Brene Brown
    8) I'll Carry You: the Sacred Dance of Grief and Joy by Angie Smith
    9) Help, Thanks, WOW: the Three Essential Prayers by Ann Lamott
    10) The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People by Stephen Covey
    and so many more! :) :)

    Have a blessed weekend, sweet Vicky. Sending you loves, hugs and prayers, always prayers.
    To the moon and back again!

    1. Yes, yes, and yes, to your list- Have read all but Traveling Mercies :) I think I could write several list if truth be told. But I loved the challenge of not investing too much time and going for it. Glad you played along too! Love to you dear friend!

  6. Glad you're green juicing and grateful I'm caught up with your latest writings about life and all that it brings. Love your feather and the hope it offers. Hoping your symptoms from the treatment are better, sweet Vicky, and SUPER glad you have such amazing friends in your life. Our angels on earth to walk in the way with us.

    1. I am feeling much better again, Robynn. I only have a couple of days, fortunately, that I feel so yucky, and then I rebound well. Yes- those girls have walked the distance with me and it means more than I can ever put into words- but so have you and so many blog readers!! So many angels- so true :)

  7. I hardly ever comment, though I read every post. But I had to smile when I saw a book on your list that was the same as mine. I too was impacted by The Shack. I picked it up without even looking at it much after hearing a pastor say it was the most influential book he'd read that year, and my assumption was that it was a non-fiction book. So when I got on the plane and began reading it, I was surprised to find it was a story. It riveted me and I couldn't sleep until I'd finished it in the wee hours of that next morning. The author was coming to my town to speak when the book was new, and I did a crazy thing and invited him to our tiny basement suite for dinner. He and his sister came to our little place, and it was the best blessing. It turned out to be a God-thing in so many ways as he shared the story behind writing it, and months later God would use him again to call on us at a crucial point in life. To this day, it has influenced the way I talk to God. Your post made me smile.....and motivated me to try a green smoothie without trying to cover it up with chocolate syrup. ;)

    1. I so love when a "voice" I have heard before, pops in from time to time. My goodness, I love how his story, grew a root that fostered your story! Crazy in all kinds of good ways to invite him- OHHHH- I love this! I want to hear more… you have me curious about the whole experience :) I use a dinosaur of a vitamix blender that really liquefies the greens and fruits for me- but I swear by them! Thanks for taking the time to write - so lovely to hear from you.

    2. Well, it would be a really long story if I included all the details, but finding his website and emailing him was the best decision. I just wrote him and said that I figured traveling authors had to eat out a lot, and if he didn't mind coming to a humble little basement suite, that I'd make him a homemade dinner. Surprisingly, he said yes. HIs openness and willingness to share was a precious gift. Maybe a year after he came for that dinner with his sister, I was going through a tough time in my faith. My husband was at a church event one evening, and I was journaling. I had literally just asked God to show me His love and care for me in some tangible with-skin-on way when the phone rang. It was Paul, the author, saying he was in town and was thinking of us. He wanted to know if we'd like to come hear him speak and then if we could visit. But he heard something in my voice and asked me how I really was. The words he said that night were exactly what I needed to hear, and I hung up the phone giggling at how God can get really specific with answering our prayers sometimes. And just last year, my husband and I were on a shuttle in Seattle that would take us to our car so we could drive back to BC. Another couple was on the shuttle, and we started talking. One thing led to another and I put the pieces together and asked them their names. Sure enough, it was the pastor I'd heard at this conference who had recommended The Shack in the first place. It was a treat to share with him how his recommendation that night years earlier had made such an impact.

      A vitamix has been on my wishlist for a long time. Our blender is pretty good, but someday it needs an upgrade. =) I've got some greens growing and almost ready to harvest, so it's going to be breakfast this week sometime.

      I love reading your posts and seeing the pictures, and I'm so glad Sara (Gitz) had your blog linked to hers so I could discover another good place to come when my soul needs courage for the journey. Your authenticity, hope, and determination is a gift to so many of us who stop by to read.

  8. Oh how your nerves must be on edge! A PET scan that possibly could show more cancer. I am so glad you saw the feather and how it hung on..... giving you that 'HOPE' you so need... fear and opposites and yet they reside ..within you side by side. Many prayers will go out that this PET scan will give you peace!!!
    10 books?
    1) The four agreements
    2) all the chicken soup books!!!
    3) How to heal your life
    4) the life you were born to live
    5) The shack (but for me it was very 'wordy' meaning I felt the author overused his words and it was hard to get through because there were to many words. however the jest of it and the actual story I loved)
    6) loss of innocence (read when I had teens!!!! very informative)
    7) Reviving ophelia (read because I had teen girls :) very good)
    8) Charlies Monument (short and sweet and makes one believe how important they truly are)
    9) Always (a focus on the family book)
    10) all Nicholas sparks books :)
    11) any and all books that inpower the mind...the list goes on and on..

    vicky, before you said anything about your hair...I noticed how long it was getting and think it is so pretty! I can imagine there is far more to everything..its so much bigger then we think...and I walk a mile in your shoes and think...what if I was really liking my hair and had to face lossing it again...Oh my! many prayers, much love... you do realize your true beauty shines so outshine's any physical are a human sparkler!

    1. Such a great list Peggy Sue :) Some I have read, and others I need to add to my list! The list is truly never ending, isn't it? You are too sweet, Peggy Sue, to always put yourself in my shoes and wonder what it might feel like… a "human sparkler," you are too kind, friend- so very sweet!

  9. Dear Vicky,

    first of all I have to find out the german titles ;-) ... I found all of them but 2 books from your list I cant find in german ... so I should test ... perhaps I understand it also in english (with *giggle*).

    Perhaps someone of you have the same fun to find the english title of my german booklist.

    Thats mine:

    Ken Follet, Die Säulen der Erde
    Kitty Ray, Nells geheimer Garten
    Kristin Hannah, Ein Garten im Winter
    Kristin Hannah, Zwischen uns das Meer
    Jack Canfield, Hühnersuppe für die Seele (alle)
    Jason F. Wright, Das Weihnachtsglas
    JoJo Moyes, Ein ganzes halbes Jahr
    Adam Jackson, Die zehn Geheimnisse der Liebe
    Antoine de Saint Exupéry, Der kleine Prinz
    Suzanne Collins, Die Tribute von Panem (1-3)

    If you need help to find the english title write me :-) ... I will do my best.



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