Friday, July 8, 2016

Free Hugs

beautiful flowers

Victoria, British Columbia, Canada 2016. You simply MUST go! The city is magnificent. The people are super nice. The weather is gorgeous. The food is delicious. The flowers are everywhere. I could go on and on. Victoria was one of the best city visits I've ever experienced. God has blessed me to travel to 45 states including Alaska and Hawaii and seven different countries. 

I learn something from every adventure. I learned something extra special on this outing, from this woman...

This lady has been standing on this corner at various times for the past seven years giving free hugs. Sloane spotted her first and said "Let's get a free hug!". I was apprehensive. I can hug. I like to hug but it's not a common practice for me with total strangers. Also, short in stature does not a good hugger make. You can get a little more insight into short hugger thoughts here.  Since I'm always willing to experience something new and different, I hugged her.

She may be the reason my trip to Victoria was so overwhelming? Her hug was the sweetest, most exhilarating, non-invasive hug ever! She cooed to me in a bird-like song as our arms met and embraced thanking me for stopping to hug her telling me "You're such a good hugger" and "Bless you". Uh, no, Free Hug Lady, thank you!  The experience of that hug still lingers in my heart.

Yesterday, God used that experience in a way I didn't see coming. Steve and I were at Emory for his checkup. A young woman in a wheelchair with oxygen was leaving the office when the doctor came out and whispered something to her. A few minutes later, I saw this same lady wiping tears from her face as she and her male companion waited for the elevator. I wondered if the doctor had told her bad news about her health. In the same instance, Godly compassion filled my heart and I began to pray for her lifting her needs to our Heavenly Father.

Can you guess what happened next? That's right. God nudged me to hug her. I gave him all the reasons why I couldn't. She's a stranger. She's black. She don't want no white girl getting in her face. There's eight people waiting in this tiny area for an elevator! My heart started POUNDING! Just as her friend was moving her toward the elevator, I did it! I asked if I could hug her, she nodded and I did it. It wasn't awkward or strange in any way. It felt good to extend the love of the Father to a fellow being. I saw her again in the lab. She looked at me and smiled. Her entire countenance had changed. She seemed more peaceful, more content. 

You may hug strangers all the time, but I usually don't. God showed me that to experience him, you must seek that which is alive. I loved the beautiful scenery in Victoria. The flowers are alive now but will soon die. People are alive now but will soon die but their souls are alive forever.  I Corinthians 15:22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive. God's love is alive! Share the love whenever and wherever you get the opportunity... especially to strangers.

Sharing the love,
The Happy Handicap

Feel free to leave a comment with hugging tips or experiences.

Sunday, May 29, 2016

All His Fault, an original poem

religious poem

In case this is hard to read, here is a text version:

All His Fault 
by Tammy P. Stafford

It’s not the Creator’s fault his creatures abuse, refuse and cry.
It’s our fault we reject, have no affect and despise.
The Creator didn’t create murderers, jealousy or greed, deception, bankruptcy or aborting his seed.

It’s not the Creator’s fault his creatures are unkind, rude and dry.
It’s our fault we mock, ridicule and act unwise.
The Creator didn’t create sickness, lies, cancer or death, corruption, brokenness, or meth.

It’s not the Creator’s fault his creatures want, live reckless and pry.
It’s our fault we bicker, blame and wear a disguise.
The Creator didn’t create divorce, alcoholics or fatherless children,
malice, chaos or poor economic trending.

My Creator God is responsible for:
The miracle of birth and loving me first
Helping me walk and to a wonderful husband he brought
Gave me a new song and causes doctor’s diagnoses to be wrong
Took my place, saved me by His Grace
Hung between thieves on a tree
Defeated Death and took the keys
Sent Jesus to die for me and rose on the third day free
He created life for me

These things, these glorious things are all His fault.

Worshiping the Creator,
The Happy Handicap

Monday, May 16, 2016

Why Do I Need to Spring Clean?

I enjoy a clean-smelling house, do you? The feeling you get from a clean house is exuberant. These things are nice but the reason you need to spring clean is to protect your family's health. I had never really thought much about indoor air quality


my husband was diagnosed with pulmonary fibrosis. Suddenly, air became super important to our family especially in our home! There are so many contaminants and pollutants in the air these days, indoor air quality can no longer be ignored.

For your health and lung safety, here are a few spring cleaning tips:
  • Lint and dust particles can irritate the lungs. I removed all window coverings and draperies in our home replacing them with plantation shutters. The shutters help reduce cooling bills by shutting out the sun, they look sleek and modern and the shutters are simple to clean with a damp cloth. No more removing dusty curtain/drapes to wash and rehang.
  • Change your heating and air conditioning filter every 30 days to reduce pet dander, dust and other allergen inducing particles in your home. You can program some newer thermostats to automatically remind you with a flashing message when it's time to change your filter.  Be sure to check yours for this handy feature.
  • Make sure you're informed about the contaminants in your house that can affect your health. For example, most homes built before the 1970's contain the toxic material asbestos, which can cause mesothelioma cancer if it is disturbed or not removed properly. Ensure a professional comes in to assess your home if you think it has asbestos in it. Click here to order FREE information about mesothelioma and your rights.
  • Warning: Chemicals are hazardous to your health! Vinegar and baking soda are two common household items that can be used to clean most anything in your home without harsh effects of store-bought cleaners. Add a drop or two of your favorite essential oil for a nice fragrance. I like peppermint or lavender.
  • Make a list of the things you want to accomplish realizing you can't do everything in one day. When you do finish, take a deep breath and enjoy your clean home.
Clean it up,
The Happy Handicap

Friday, May 13, 2016

Standing on what?

*headphones may be needed to hear her sing
Standing on the Word of God. The B.I.B.L.E!

Those Mother Goose Gospel videos are paying off. Lisette loves the B.I.B.L.E. song. I'm so humbled she loves to play piano and sing Jesus songs!

Capturing memories,
The Happy Handicap

Friday, May 6, 2016

Happy Mother's Day

angry birds movie
Photo and Video Credits: Sony Pictures

Loving those mothers who have hatched little ones or are in the process,
The Happy Handicap