Posted in Dog, life, Thoughts, Videos

Happy and Grandpa Having Fun My First Attempt at Making a YouTube Short

I was watching a video about increasing Etsy sales, and someone mentioned that they used Youtube shorts to help advertise their items. I had already been mulling the idea of making a short, and decided that now was the time to learn. Since I had absolutely no idea how to make one, I decided to make a few practice videos using some of Happy’s old footage to see how it works.

I found an old video of my father playing with Happy. The video is short, but dear to my heart as at it is one of the last clips of my father sitting up looking energetic and so Happy. Sadly, after he fell and broke two of his ribs his health was never the same. Thankfully we got a few more years with him, but every time that I see a clip like this I long for those hard, but comforting days when I had all my loved ones close. And I cannot help but long for the day when we will all be together again. That feeling has definitely been heightened after a tough week where it seems like everything that can go wrong, is going wrong and many things have happened to create a great uncertainty about the future.

Yet even in all this God has been gracious and granted us comfort. I can watch this video with tears in my heart because I miss my father, yet I can also have great joy as with deep longing I look forward to the happiness of the resurrection morning when Jesus will call my father and so many other loved ones from their resting place. With a great shout He will call his sleeping servants from their dusty beds, transformed into his pure image, never again to come under the dominion of pain, suffering, sickness, or death. Oh how I long for that hour when the dead in Christ shall rise first and then we who are alive shall join them.

Oh how I desire to be part of that rejoicing throng. How I pray that I will let the Lord cut, prune, and weed out every sin from my heart so that I will hear the blessing, “Well done my good and faithful servant” and my heart will leap with joy to know that I have been counted worthy to sing the song of the Lamb, and spend the rest of eternity thanking my Savior for his unbelievable sacrifice so that my sins, the sins of my loved ones, and all who desire could be washed cleaned. So that we could once again walk the streets of gold, eat from the tree of life, and have an endless lifetime to make and enjoy more memories with our loved ones.

I hope that as you watch this short little clip of my father and Happy playing together that you will not only recollect some of your dearest memories, but that the prayer of your heart would be to except God’s great gift and that nothing this world offer would stand between you and becoming a part of that rejoicing throng.

Posted in Bible Puzzles, Faith, Find the Difference, Fun Puzzles, life, Thoughts

Sabbath Afternoon Fun: Find 3 Difference Romans 5:6-8

I hope that you are having a Sabbath afternoon. And that you are enjoying this chance to learn better how to keep your heart rested in the promises of God. I know how hard this lesson is to learn, but before the last great battle we must learn this lesson fully if we hope to stand. Yet learning this much needed lesson is painful.

Currently God is teaching our family this lesson. Between the death of my father and the change in the economy our house became too expensive for our tiny budget to support so we had to sell the house. In the months leading up to our home going up for sell the market was full of good homes at a price we could handle. But within days of our house going on the market most of the homes were gone. But every so often a seemingly good home would appear. But as soon as our house sold and we could finally put in a bid, the competition became so fierce that there were times I found a potential home in the morning and before I could show my mother and sister a few hours later, it was sold.

Over and over we would call about a home to find out it was already pending, or after a few days of discussion and prayer we would decide that it was time to call the realtor to see the home, and it was gone. The first few times we were not worried, but after days turned into weeks, and the time to move drew dangerously near, we began to worry. Finally we decided that we would have to put our house hunting on hold and find a place to rent. But to our dismay we found out that even though we will have the money to rent a home for a year while looking for a new house, because our income is too low, we cannot find a home to rent.

Now we are only days away from having to leave our home, and we still have no place to move too and no idea where we are going to put our belongings or how we will move them since none of us have the health or strength needed to move hundred of boxes or heavy furniture. It is a very unnerving position to be in. One that I would not wish upon another. Living on the street is hard for someone in good health, but for a diabetic dog who requires refrigerated insulin and three sickly women, it is a potential death sentence.

I wish that we could say that we have reached this point without questioning or murmuring. Our trust in God so complete that like Peter we can fall into a sleep so deep that even the glory of an angel in our room cannot wake us. But that would be a commandment breaking stretch. At times our blood pressure has reached dangerous levels, our nerves have gotten so taunt that we had to apologize for our tense and irritated words, and at moments the fear has become so strong that we could not help but with tears wonder if God had abandoned us.

Yet at the same time, after gathering in prayer to ask for God’s strength and help, peace filled our hearts. While we were worried, our trust in God outweighed that fear to the point that smiles replaced tears as our minds were pointed to all the ways that God had helped us in the past. Promises from God’s word were recalled to our minds and as our trembling hands reached out to grasp them, He made us stronger.

At this moment we cannot fully say where God is leading us or why He has chosen to take us down this frightful path, we have no clue if we will have another roof to go to when we leave this home or if the car will become our new home, but we can say that God has been faithful to His word and is holding our hand. Here and there doing little things to prove that He taking care of us and to help strengthen our trust in Him.

It is my hope that for whatever future test God is preparing us for, we will prove faithful. That in some way this test of our faith, of painful muscle building, will not only draw us closer, but will in some way become such a testimony to others that it will help others to find the courage to stand firm and bring others to the Lord.

As you enjoy today’s find the difference verse about God’s love for sinful man, it is my prayer that God will help you to hide this verse in your heart. So when your test of faith comes, you will have the words of love and hope that you will need to help encourage your faith and to be a light to your feet keeping them from falling off the narrow path that leads to light.

Posted in Bible Puzzles, Fun Puzzles, Word Searches

Sabbath Afternoon Fun:Bible Quiz Word Search Edition Psalms 139:13-14

Happy Sabbath. I know that I am feeling extra grateful for the Sabbath right now as things have been rather crazy around here. Our house is sold and we have to find a new home within the next few days, but it seems like as soon as our house sold the market dried up. It is a very discouraging situation, but we are determined to put our trust in God as we lift our voice in prayer and pleading to Him multiple times a day.

During this time of stress it is a great blessing to be able to put aside the stress of house hunting and simply commune with God. How wonderful it is to have a day where the stress of this life can be laid aside for a few hours, yet still able to lift up our petitions to His compassionate ear.

May you find rest from your burdens this Sabbath day and know the pleasure of laying all your cares and worries upon Him.

Posted in Fun Puzzles, Thoughts, Uncategorized, Word Searches

19 Sales and Learning the Lesson to Leave Well Enough Alone

Ten months into my Etsy journey and I have made 19 hard earned sales. For months at a time it seems like there is an unwritten rule that I can only make 1 sale a month, no matter how many visitors come to my shop. Then, thankfully, there is a month like this one, where I get a slight boost and make 3 sales, and then back to crickets for weeks.

So, after listening to some You Tube videos, I have been trying to work on improving SEO and making a few changes to some of my pictures that I felt could use a better background. I still have a long way to go to make the needed improvements. But one lesson that I quickly learned, thanks in part to some mistakes that I have made in the past on KDP, is that the saying leave well enough alone or if its not broke, don’t fix it, is a very important saying for your Etsy shop.

If a listing is doing well, don’t tamper with it. After making a couple of changes to a listing that was doing fairly well, and experiencing a sudden slow down (you think I would have learned my lesson from KDP), I heard some very valuable advice from an Etsy youtuber. If you want to see if you can improve it, and there is another category that it can go under, make a copy, change the first picture, and make one or two tweaks so you know if the changes you made improved your listing or hurt it. Kind of like an A B testing at the optometrist office where the doctor ask if you see better with A or B or they are both about the same.

For now, since I do not get many sales, if my listing recently had a sale or two, I leave well enough alone and give that listing a chance. That way I do not sabotage a listing that might have taken off, but thanks to my tweaking instead ends up sinking like a lead balloon. Instead, if I want to make changes, I will see if I can add it to another category and make a change or two and hope and pray that at last one of my listing will take off and I can stop spending months wondering who wrote the invisible rule that I can only get 1 sale a month even if if it is only for$2

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Posted in life, Thoughts, Uncategorized

Another Important Lesson for Trying to Start Your Own Business: One Hundred Percent Effort Does Not Always Equal Success

How many times have we been told that effort is the secret to success. Your grades are slipping all you need to do is study harder. You want a promotion at work just work harder. You need to take off a few pounds, diet better and workout harder. No matter the problem, the answer to all your problems is to give your 110% effort and like magic, all your problems will be solved.

Well this might be true if the reason for your few extra pounds was that extra slice of cake or two that you liked to indulge in after a hard day, and not a hormone problem. If your grades were slipping because you were not completing your homework and forgoing that needed hour of study in favor of hanging out with friends or binge watching your favorite You Tube channel and not because you had an undiagnosed learning disability like dyslexia that made it hard for you to understand what you were reading. As much as we want to believe that effort always means success, there are areas of life where we can work our fingers to the bone, only to fall short of the mark. But what about things that you have absolutely no control over, like how many people buy your books or from your Etsy shop?

We can spend hours creating the perfect shop banner and creating professional looking designs, take pictures that look like they belong in magazine, and have all the right keywords and yet the success we seek may remain a step our two out of our reach. Our little shop might seem like it is about to take off when changes to the algorithm brings our rising graph crashing downward for days and even weeks. Sickness could put such a damper upon our effort that a car without gas being pushed uphill by the father of knew born with colic and a bad case of the flu looks like a blaze of glory compared to our empty tank of energy.

Or after spending months preparing products, creating photos, and trying to brainstorm tags, and mere days after celebrating the opening of our shop, we can wake up to the fearful news that interest rates are rising, stores are closing, banks are failing, and the economy is on the brink of a financial disaster not seen since the great depression. Bringing the traffic in your shop to a slow drip instead of a quiet but steady stream.

Yet for all of that, there is something satisfying knowing that even though your dreams of financial greatness did not come to pass, or have been put on an extra long hold, that you have given it your all. That you have done all in your power to learn, grow, and work towards your dream. Because

So if you have a dream that you believe is worth giving your all, what are you waiting for? Who knows what you can do or where you will go if once you pick up your feet and begin the journey of a thousand miles. There are no guarantees that you will become the millionaire of your dreams, a doctor, a best selling doctor, etc. But one thing is for certain, a hope never pursued will forever remain a dream.

Click here to check out these fun designs about how 100 percent effort does not always equal success.

Posted in Bible Puzzles, Religion, Scramble

Bible Word Scramble Joel 1:11

Happy Sabbath everyone. My family and I have been busy the past few weeks trying to sell our house and look for another one. Between that and a bunch of doctor’s appointments we have had quite a few low sleep nights. Thankfully last night we were able to go to bed early for the first time in over a month. It is amazing what a blessing a good night’s sleep can be.

Since I felt a bit more rested this Sabbath, I thought that I would take the time to share a fun Bible word scramble based upon Joel 1:11. I hope that you enjoy it.