Have Heart, Will Travel

Memory Monday

Memory Monday: Legend of the Rose Window

Memory MondayNancyComment

Since today is Texas Independence Day, it seems fitting that today's Memory Monday post is from a Texas Adventure!  (Note: Yes, many people around here--we are based in Texas--have wished each other Happy Independence Day and there is much Texan-rejoicing in the land!) One year ago this month, we found ourselves in San Antonio, Texas. It is a beautiful city full of history and so much to do! We took a little time in our trip to visit several of the historic missions.


While giving ourselves a self-guided tour, I began to overhear one of the official guides talking to a group and the story really caught my attention.  They were standing in front of a uniquely ornate and lovely window, apparently the centerpiece of the drama.

The Rose Window. Pretty outstanding for something carved in 1775 on a deserted mission, isn't it?

I so enjoyed listening to the history  legend of the Rose Window, that I had to come back and do some reading for myself.  According to who you believe, one version of the story goes like this:

"In the most elaborate version, a noted Spanish sculptor named Pedro Huizar, charged with carving a religious window at San José, instead used his considerable talent to carve a monument to his lovely sweetheart, Rosa. When the window was complete, he sent for his love—who died in a shipwreck on her way to New Spain. Huizar spent the rest of his life celibate and penitent, carving the religious portal above the entrance to the church."

from Texas Monthly, February 1987

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For those of you who were most excited about celebrating Texas Independence Day, check out these t-shirts!  Cute!

Memory Monday: Celebrating with joy!

Disney, Florida, Memory MondayNancy2 Comments

Isn't it awesome when you don't have to tell others you're having a great time because it's just. so. obvious.

Exhibit 1:

Jimmy wedding funThat fun-loving guy between Mark and I is our friend Jimmy, and it was to attend his wedding that we traveled to Florida, the trip which has been the subject of the last few blog posts.  It seemed fitting to wrap up this little series with an actual picture of the celebration!

Every part of that vacation, while a short one, was a blast for our whole family!

You will not be surprised, by now, to hear me say this, but go!  If you are invited to a wedding, a reunion, a celebration and it is within possibility for you to go....do it!  Yes, life is made up of the ordinary, everyday moments for which we're grateful, but these special celebration moments are the icing on the cake that is life!

I never hear of anyone who has regretted traveling.  I know lots of people who have regretted purchases. Many who have regretted not traveling.

If possible, use the trick we did here of adding a day and a half onto a trip we were already making to really add zing! Is there something fun to see or experience within a reasonable drive to where you're going?  Petunia only knew we were going to "Uncle" Jimmy's wedding.  She didn't know that we were going to Disney World until we drove through the gates!

Happy (almost) 4th anniversary to Jimmy and his beautiful bride, Nicole!

Disneyworld Jimmy wedding Oct 2011 672

Memory Monday: A wide stretch of soft sand and a STARFISH

Beach, Life lessons, Memory MondayNancy2 Comments

Disneyworld Jimmy wedding Oct 2011 505The Florda beach.

Ahhhh, just typing those words bring about a sense of calm, not to mention the joy that comes from looking at the soft sand and gorgeous light (okay, and precious little girl) in the picture above.

This memory was born  from getting to attend the wedding of a good friend a few years ago. It's the trip that allowed us to add the couple days of Disney I wrote about here.  As we were long time friends of the groom, Mark was a groomsman and I was there just as a guest.  However, to my surprise and pleasure, my past wedding-coordinating experience had reason to be needed and I got to play a role in the wedding, after all.

I was happy to just be useful.  The bride, however, who is gracious and kind, insisted on giving me a necklace for my time. I tried to refuse, saying no gift was necessary, but I could see she really wanted to give it, so I accepted gratefully.

In keeping with the beach location, the necklace I received was a beautiful silver, sparkly starfish.  The piece of jewelry was lovely in its own right, but the bride, who I was just getting to know, could not have known that I love starfish!  I don't love starfish in a 'collect them, wear them, decorate with them' sort of way. I just deep down have a fascination with the creatures because of a story I heard long ago that sticks with me right down in my soul and has had provided the inspiration I have needed to draw upon at uncertain moments.

To close this Memory Monday, let me share that story with you and ask you, please share this post with others if you know someone who might need this story today.

The Starfish Story

A young man is walking along the ocean and sees a beach on which thousands and thousands of starfish have washed ashore. Further along he sees an old man, walking slowly and stooping often, picking up one starfish after another and tossing each one gently into the ocean.

“Why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?,” he asks.

“Because the sun is up and the tide is going out and if I don’t throw them further in they will die.”

“But, old man, don’t you realize there are miles and miles of beach and starfish all along it! You can’t possibly save them all, you can’t even save one-tenth of them. In fact, even if you work all day, your efforts won’t make any difference at all.”

The old man listened calmly and then bent down to pick up another starfish and threw it into the sea. “It made a difference to that one.”

Memory Monday: When one adventure leads to a BIGGER one!

International, Memory MondayNancy2 Comments

EBU jacket Exactly 20 years ago this week, I was working my first post-college job.  What was it?  Well, my degree is Political Science with an International Emphasis, so naturally I was an administrative assistant....in a broadcasting office.


It was at the WORLD CUP OF 1994!!  People, I would have done any job to have gotten to work at the World Cup.  I was lucky to have an inside, well-paying job and still get to be around all the action.  (The photo above is the jacket I was given by my employer, EBU Sports.)  Of course, twenty years ago the only people I knew interested in the World Cup were international friends at Texas Christian University with a couple other Americans thrown in for variety.)  It was one of those friends who referred me to the office where I got the job.

The work was all day long, seven days a week.  I actually had to ask special permission to get off for the two games to which I had already bought tickets. (I saw South Korea vs Germany in group stage and then Brazil vs. The Netherlands in the quarterfinals.) No big deal.


I have not even gotten to the biggest part of this story, though.  As part of an office to which international broadcasters came by every day, I really got to know some of them well.  I would always talk to this couple from Colombia who told me all about their country and family.  We became friends and they asked if I would visit them.  I said I would love to. (Americans tend to deal with these invitations a bit casually compared with our foreign counterparts.)  A couple weeks more of this chatter and one day the wife shows up with a packing list.  For my visit. To Colombia.

I was a 22 year old young lady. I had just graduated from college. I did not mean for them to take my invitation acceptance so seriously, so...now.  What could I do?

I went to Colombia for 6 months and it changed my life.

Memory Monday: Girlfriends in Africa

Memory Monday, UgandaNancyComment

ImageIf everything has gone as planned, I will be hanging out on these same steps soon.  They are the front steps of a place that works God's miracles here on earth: Serving His Children.  Here, Renee Bach, along with a medical and house staff, help treat malnourished children, while teaching their caregivers not only about proper nutrition, but also about a God who loves them.

I sure had fun with these compassionate, funny friends of mine while serving there together a few years ago with our church. What a memory!