Monday, February 27, 2012

Happy Birthday Doug!

On February 28th, 1943 a wonderful man was born. Before Doug's second birthday his father joined heaven after storming the banks of Normany and marching through France. He fought valiantly and sacrificed his own life in order for his son, Doug to live and enjoy freedom in America. Doug was raised by his mother, a wonderful godly woman who provided him with many opportunities and experiences. The greatest gift she gave him was the gift of love and family.

Together, Doug and I share five wonderful children, an awesome son-in-law and daughter-in-law, and two gorgeous, loving grandchildren. In our family, Doug is NOT biologically related to any of us. He chose us! By choosing us, Doug is a daily reminder of GOD's love and the love of Christ!

THANK YOU, Doug for being a constant reminder of how much GOD loves us! We love you and we are thankful GOD chose you to be a part of our lives!

Andrea Bowling Perdue

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Innocence and Example of a Child

A couple of weeks ago, Doug and I traveled to Stanley, Virginia to visit friends. We decided to eat a late lunch at a local restaurant, The Hawksbill Diner (1388 E Main St Stanley, VA 22851). We enjoyed home cooked food, but were entertained by the most charming little girl. Her name is Kaylee.

Kaylee oozed with the sweet innocence of a child. Jesus calls us to have the heart of a child. He wants us to love and encourage others without conditions or preconceived ideas of what they should or should not be. Kaylee was not afraid to speak her mind. She was confident and kind as she bubbled over with smiles.

Thank you, Kaylee for brightening our day and reminding us to be kind to all those in our path. Thank you to Kaylee's parents for allowing the use of this photo taken during our visit. May GOD bless and use your family in ways beyond what you could ask or imagine!

By HIS mercy and in the grip of HIS grace,

Andrea Bowling Perdue

Friday, February 17, 2012

Seven Years and Counting

Like wool, our marriage has continued to breath and keep us warm despite occasional soaking rains from life's storms. God continues to grow and change each of us, for the better. Some of life's lessons have been easy, some difficult. Many days in "The Perdue Zoo" have been both exciting and scary. Each of our tomorrows never fail to give new definition to adventure. The lines between dream and reality blur as best friends continue to dance through this life as one!

Happy Anniversary, my love!

D: Divinely chosen to complete my life!
O: Obsessively observant...the quality I love to hate:)
U: Understanding when life makes no sense!
G: Genuine~The authentic real deal!
L: Loving when I am not lovable!
A: Amazing husband and father!
S: Safe haven when my heart is weak!

Forever and Always,

Andrea Bowling Perdue

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Journal Notes: My Nana

 In June of 1978, Nana was diagnosed with Hodgkins Disease. Any form of cancer in the seventies was a death sentence. Not much was known about cancer and it caused fear in the hearts of many. Friends and some family backed away, probably unsure of what to say or do.

Quickly, Nana's body was racked with pain and eaten alive from the inside out. We kept her at home as long as possible. At age 12,  I spent my days by her side learning to give medicine and care for her other needs. I read and talked to her; it is where I wanted to be. I treasure those moments in time as painful as they were for both she and I.

Nana's physician would come by weekly to check on her and administer chemo. He would sit at the kitchen table and mix the drugs for her chemotherapy. He carefully and methodically tried to save his patient, but nothing worked. The tray of medications was enormous, but Nana continued to decline, daily.

From early June to late September; that's all the time three little girls had left with the most important person in their lives. Papa lived for about two more years, but it was not the same. Papa spoiled us, but Nana  had provided a safe haven from the outside world. Life forever changed in her absence. Heaven gained a godly mother and grandmother,  earth lost a priceless treasure.

By HIS mercy and in the grip of HIS grace,

Andrea Bowling Perdue

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

More Exerts From My Journal

More exerts from my journal:

My father, eighteen and mother, fourteen when I was conceived eloped shortly after my mothers fifteenth birthday.  Each of my parents searched for love, but evidence of true love did not exist. Possibly each felt they had found true love, but love does not knowingly provoke harm.

My fathers heart embodied a childhood of abuse rendering him volatile. Did he realize his anger spewed and wounded each of us? Did he feel remorse?

My mother, a child herself never grew strong enough to defend herself or her children. She found freedom from my father when he divorced her after the tragic death of my youngest sister in 1989.

Unfortunately, both of my parents live out their lives without the joy of truly knowing their children or enjoying healthy relationships with us. While both seem content in their own worlds, I fear neither understand or comprehend the true love of Christ and the peace and contentment only GOD can provide.

By HIS mercy and in the grip of HIS grace,

Andrea Bowling Perdue

Monday, February 6, 2012

Personal Thoughts

Sharing a personal journal entry, today:

My Nana would have been about forty two years old when I was born to her fifteen year old daughter. She must have been worried and upset at the prospect of her little girl raising a little girl. I am confident her heart broke as life became increasingly complicated for her new grandchild.

Nana did her best to keep my life normal and make me feel safe until the day she was taken from this world. By the time of her death at age fifty four, her face was full of wrinkles and she had been dying her hair for years. Could stress have taken its toll on her young body? The same body taken had cradled me and the same hands lovingly made my clothes and fixed all my favorite foods. The heart now with GOD loved me despite the circumstances of my birth. I wonder if she thought it coincidence or a divine appointment I was born on the same date as her own mother, my great grandmother?

By HIS mercy and in the grip of HIS grace,

Andrea Bowling Perdue