Monday, August 18, 2008

Scotties of Distinction, and a Sweet Texan Lady!

International & American Champion
"A Tad Bit Unbelievable"

"International Best in Show"
& "American Best in Show"

I've decided to do a little post on a very special friend of mine, Donna Winslow. Donna and I have known each other for almost eight years, and the story of our meeting is a little unique, and one I thought would be fun to share.

We were a cozy little family of five at the time, with a faithful canine friend named Hershey, our Chocolate Lab. To cut a long story short we decided to add another dog to our family, and to cut it even shorter, we decided on a Scottie we found at a pet shop. Not knowing a great deal about the breed I set off on the internet to educate myself, where I came across Donna's site Springbok Scottish Terriers.

Donna lives in Texas with her husband Jack, where she breeds Scottish Terriers as well as shows them throughout the country.

I began contact with her on how to train and care for our new puppy. The terrier breed was all new to me and I was a little intimidated by it. What I found was the just sweetest Texan lady who was so kind, encouraging and helpful to us. She spent many hours on the phone and e-mailteaching me about this "most wonderful" of breeds, right down to grooming.
Our acquaintance developed into a family friendship, and a few years later we had the
privilege of having her and Elliot stay at our home. She was up to Montgomery Pennsylvania for The Nationals and we made a trip down to watch her show Elliot and to meet in person for the first time. A memory I will always cherish.

"Elliot Ness"

I admire Donna's work with Scottish Terriers, she has traveled the country showing them, and has even appeared on Animal Planet showing Elliot in a dog show. She has a wonderful breeding program and strives for the best in the breed from health to beauty!

In case you didn't know it, all of these dogs are hand stripped, which means their coat is pulled, not clipped. Show regulations require this, and it is very time consuming, and quite an art. Only very small areas of the coat may be clipped, such as the ears, cheeks, and throat. This pulling gives the coat a very smooth yet hard and wiry texture.

I remember feeling Elliot's coat and how rich it was as I sank my fingers into it. Did I mention how very sweet he is, and such house manners! Biddy would run up to his crate and bark her fool head off at him and he would just look at her and sit silent!

Champion Springbok's
"Tails I Win"

I am thankful to say we have been able to maintain our friendship over the miles, as well as over these eight years, and have fun talking about everything from our faith, politics, family and of course Scotties! I was especially impressed when I discovered she recently went sky diving! Really, such risks, "D"! I never know what to expect from her, and that is part of the reason I love her.

I can openly confess I covet her dogs, and her grooming abilities. (I have been asking for Elliot for years, but I never get anywhere.) I have always found an open heart in her and can say without a doubt her heart is as big as the state she abides in.

I hope you will visit her site, it definitely worth seeing. Here are a few pictures of this very lovely lady, her lovely dogs, and what she does so very well!


Luke's Daughter
DOB: 2-27-07
(Couldn't you just eat her up?:)

Friday, August 8, 2008

The Testing of Our Faith , More Precious Than Gold

I've been thinking about Joseph, and his brothers since my recent post on the 5th of this month. It was such a long process the Lord took to work out His purpose, and to be Jacob and Joseph's "re-reward". So much happened in Joseph's life. So much of an example for us. It's funny that we cling to those examples however we avoid the experiences which the Lord allows to bring them about.

I was out and about today running some errands and thought what is more painful, to go about through one's day with a broken leg, or a broken heart?
A broken leg is instantly on the mend, not so with a broken heart. A broken heart just resonates it's pain, and it is not moving about that makes it hurt all the more it is merely thoughts.

Joseph carried a broken heart for a very long time. He didn't know what God was working out. He paid a high price for his faithfulness to God, to maintain that testimony, even though He didn't create the chain of events that started them.
He kept himself from self pity, and bitterness, and because he did he was able to receive the blessing the Lord intended for Him and for his family.
What did it mean in Joseph's brother's life to receive such mercy instead of bitter vengeance? This was the heart of the man Joseph allowed the Lord to create in him.

I pray as I walk through this life, even though I am no Joseph, and will never be an example to untold millions, that I may honor the Lord in all that He allows in my life. I pray that I would not dishonor Him, nor grieve Him in His providence.

I hope that I would be able to say with Joseph "... ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good..." (Genesis 50:20)

These words penned by Stonewall Jackson to his wife are such encouragement in trusting God's providence:

Try to look up and be cheerful, and not desponding. Trust our kind heavenly Father, and by the eye of faith see that all things with you are right and for your best interest. The clouds come, pass over us, and are followed by bright sunshine; so in God's dealings with us, He permits trouble for awhile. But let us even in the most trying dispensations of His providence, be cheered by the the brightness which is ahead. Try to live near to Jesus, and secure the peace which flows like a river.
...I have been taught never to despair, but to wait expecting the blessing at the last moment. Such occurrences should strengthen our faith in Him who never slumbers...

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

"Through skillful and godly
Wisdom is a house [a life,
a family] built, and by
understanding it is established [on
sound and good foundation]. And
by knowledge shall the chambers
[of it's every area] be filled with all
pleasant and precious riches."
Proverbs 24:3-4

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

His Tender Mercies

I've been reading a book by Stanley Collins, "Courage and Submission". It is a commentary on Ruth & Esther. It is a very old little paper back I have had for years that was given to me second hand. I have looked at it I don't know how many times and put it in a pile of books that I was going to get rid of. The pile sat for days and every time I passed it I looked at the book and was prompted to pull it out of the pile to read. Of course I kept ignoring the urge, but finally gave in. How very good God is to us. It contains only 94 pages covering both books. It has been such an incredible blessing to me. I would like to share a little part with you.

Speaking of Naomi's bitterness in Ruth 1:20.
Call me not Naomi (sweet or pleasant), call me Mara (bitter): for the Almighty hath dealt very bitterly with me."

Poor Naomi! Like so many of us she is passing judgment on herself and the Lord before the Lord has finished! If only she knew how wonderfully and lovingly God is planing to make the remainder of her days happier than she can imagine!

All she can see is a grim future ahead, yet God is preparing the loveliest of all surprises for her. Her future is so good that Naomi would never believe it if He were to tell her.

Remember how Jacob reacted similarly when his sons said Benjamin had to go to the Controller of Egypt [Joseph]? He mourned and wept crying, "Joseph is not...and ye will take Benjamin away: all these things are against me" (Genesis 42:36) Oh that he might have known that God was never working harder to bless Jacob than at that moment! God was arranging a great reunion for Joseph, Jacob, and Benjamin; but all Jacob could see was immediate disaster.

This is probably our biggest mistake today: we single out some experience, then judge God by this alone, wondering why He allowed it. So easily we forget His many blessings, and daily benefits, the mercies which are renewed to us each morning.p.14

Let us always remember that God never makes a mistake. He knows what He is doing. But His thoughts are not our thoughts, and His ways are past finding out, for He knows the end from the beginning. When it might appear that God manipulates His people like pawns in a game of chess, always remember that the people most blessed are the "very pawns" He uses.


Forgive me dear Lord for doubting you, and not believing when hard times come that ALL things work together for [my] good.