Inner Sparkle, sparkle inspiration

Faux Intimacy

Seth Godin wrote the following in his blog this morning:

True connection is a frightening prospect.

When you are seen by someone else, really seen, it hurts even more if you’re ultimately rejected. When we connect, we make promises, buy into a different future, engage with another, someone who might let us down (or we might let them down).

Far easier, of course, to do something more shallow.

A friend on social media is not like a friend in real life.

And so, we sit at dinner, browsing on our phone instead of connecting with the person across from us. Because the phone promises instant gratification, an exciting dopamine hit, and plenty of faux intimacy.

Which is great as far as it goes, but no, it’s not the same.

He’s talking, of course, about losing one’s sparkle in real life for a false sparkle that isn’t really us, but a phantom of who we really are, an electronic sparkle isn’t the same as flesh and blood, a real-person sparkle.

Don’t do it! Call a friend and get together. Put your phone away when there are human beings in your presence. Sparkle in real time, real life!

By the way, I’m trying to come up with my blog schedule for the fall. I have two blogs: Sparkle No Matter What, and Un-Special Needs, for parents of kids who have special issues. I’m thinking of alternating between blogs, writing one each week. Not sure if I will have a regular day or not, such as every Wednesday. The problem with that is, I may loose my enthusiasm for sharing if I have to wait for a certain day. But be assured, I will be sending out regular blogs in some form starting in September. Thank you for “listening.” I hope what I send will be worth your time!


Inner Sparkle, sparkle inspiration

Tell the Grumpies to Get Lost!

Mike and I both had the grumpies this past weekend. I was grumpy at him, and he was grumpy at me. Who started it? Hard to say. But I know who ended it.

When we get in a downward spiral, we sometimes sit in the living room, Mike on the couch, I on the “cozy,” a big padded rocking chair, big enough for two rather skinny people. Durango the cat usually joins me on the cozy. And Mike and I sit there and hash it out, trying to find some peace with each other.

This time, I communicated that it would be helpful for him to encourage me, but I said it still grumpily. Suddenly he said this: “You know, a lot of guys would give their right arm to be married to someone like you. I’m glad to be married to you, Sweetheart.”

A shy smile came over my face as if someone had told the grumpies to get lost, and from that point on, Mike and I encouraged each other the rest of the day.

11449-Dont-Mix-Bad-Words-With-Your-Bad-MoodA couple little sentences of encouragement. One little gesture to break the cycle of bad moods. That’s usually all it takes. Tell the grumpies to get lost, and encourage your spouse, your children, the lady in the grocery store, even if she’s grumpy…What a difference it will make in their lives if you do! Saying encouraging words is the best kind of sparkle.

“…not returning insult for insult, but giving a blessing instead.” I Peter 3:9

healthy cosmetics and household, Outer Sparkle (Health for the Body), Uncategorized

A Beauty Secret of Cleopatra

If you read of Cleopatra of Eygpt, she certainly, in my opinion, didn’t possess the kind of inner sparkle that we would want to emulate. But her outside beauty is, if not a fact, a long-term legend. One contributor to her beautiful skin was thought to be her regular milk baths.

I haven’t added milk to my bath yet (but may try it this winter when I love to warm up from the cold Colorado weather in a warm-to-hot bath). But I have become somewhat addicted to using whole-milk plain yogurt to wash my face!

DSC00605edreduced.jpgYogurt, like milk, contains almost magical enzymes that exfoliate, add moisture, and protect skin. The first time I tried washing my face with yogurt, I felt my skin afterward, and I had never felt it so smooth and silky. It kind of felt like baby skin.

Using a soft face brush just adds to the gentle exfoliation.

Here’s my washing routine. I gently rub on the yogurt (I am fortunate to have a small refrigerator in my bathroom!), with my purple face brush and swirl it around. Then I rinse with warm water until the yogurt is removed, then I turn off the hot water completely and finish rinsing with ice cold water. I open my eyes in the icy water, and that helps reduce bloodshot eyes and dark circles. Then pat dry with a towel.

SONY DSCBy the way, the little refrig. in my bathroom closet is used constantly, very handy when you want to make your own skin care and cosmetics.

I am not someone who uses botox or anything like that, and never will, and trust me, I do have some wrinkles…and my skin type tends to be dry and un-supple.  I no longer look 25! But I am committed to be the best I can be in every area, “character lines” and all. And washing my face with yogurt makes my skin the best it can be. I highly recommend it!



Would love to hear your ideas for skin care. Leave a comment if you’d like!









Inner Sparkle, sparkle inspiration

A Brave Woman Is a Sparkling Woman

I’m not brave. You’ll never see me swinging from a bungee cord or jumping out of an airplane. Recently our neighbors took us to a hiking spot they like (especially the husband) by their cabin. “Here’s the shortcut!” he announced, pointing to a steep, high precipice. “Oh no, said I, shaking my head.” But going with his promise that it was just a short distance ( he must have just forgotten how far it really was!), I agreed to climb.

Everyone else used their hiking sticks and stayed erect, but I, I climbed up practically on my hands and knees, grasping for branches and protruding rocks. After all, you can’t fall if you’re already down!

No, I am not brave. But God wants us to be brave. Fortunately, not necessarily the kind of brave that is willing to climb where only mountain goats should tread, but the kind of brave that involves character.

Second Timothy 1:7 says, For God did not give us a spirit of timidity but one of power, love, and self-discipline.

An interesting pursuit is to do a study of timidity and cowardice in the Bible, and its woeful effects!

So what’s so bad about not being brave? Well, it is cowardice that lures us to say yes when we should say no, and to say no when we should say yes. Timidity gives us permission to avoid conflict, to care too much what people think, to ignore what should be addressed.

20170702_140222ed23By the way, here is a picture of our wonderful neighbors who coaxed us to go up that steep mountain, and this is where we ended up. It’s kind of a picture of the reward of reaching for the strength that only God can give. It results in a special kind of sparkle!




healthy food, Outer Sparkle (Health for the Body)

Decadent Dessert…But Not Really

Once in a while we splurge and indulge in some sugar. I don’t believe that hurts our bodies. They are only hurt when they are craving real food and we give them sugar and junk instead. But there are birthday parties, holiday events…there are times to indulge just a bit.

I love the fact that even when we splurge, we can use God’s good, health-giving food for many of the ingredients.

SONY DSCThis is a decadent-looking dessert, but much of it is fruit. I think the secret to staying on a health-giving diet is to be creative and to make food that contains good ingredients more attractive, more delicious than food that contains nothing but junky stuff.

You could even add a dollop of real whipped cream to this scintillating dessert, because contrary to some thinking, real whipped cream and real butter, in moderation, are good for us!

For this dessert, simply have a slice of angel food or pound cake, add some berries that have been drizzled ahead of time with honey, and drizzle with a bit of chocolate syrup. Add that whipped cream on top, and there will be oooo’s and ahhhh’s!

I enjoy doing food photography, so I’ll probably be sending more dessert ideas, and someone has to eat the finished product afterward, right?

getting a little older, Inner Sparkle, sparkle inspiration

Losing My “Bloom”

Jane Austen has made reference in her stories to characters, and not really old women, just ones who are past their very young looks, as having “lost her bloom.”

I look in the mirror, and I have definitely lost my bloom! It’s like a flower that begins to fade and not quite looking as striking as it used to. But although I have lost that youthful bloom, I don’t ever have to lose my sparkle! Because that shines from the inside out and is a result of having the joy of knowing Jesus.

7ea378759c49e2120d12bc9d5732d845Haven’t you seen plenty of young women who still have their “bloom”, but don’t have any sparkle? And conversely, aren’t you often taken back by an older woman whose hair and skin aren’t what they used to be, but she absolutely sparkles!

And if you are a young woman reading this, still having your bloom and sparkling at the same time is a wonderful thing! Hang on to that sparkle because unlike the youthful bloom, it need never leave you.

We get older every day, but here’s something the apostle Paul said about it all (Yes, even he seemed concerned about losing the bloom, but he knew full well about the sparkle):

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day.  
2 Corinthians 4:16




Inner Sparkle, sparkle inspiration

“I’ve Just Seen Jesus”

Jesus, as recorded in John chapter 14, said this before He left this world. He spoke to His dearest friends and disciples, “Before long, the world will not see me anymore, but you will see me. Because I live, you also will live.”

john_14_19___daily_bible_verse_by_bible_quote-d9go1oaWhat an amazing thing. As followers of Jesus, we see Him, but others around us don’t! We see Him in a sunset, a rainbow. We see Him in His people, and even in the people who don’t believe in Him, because they bear His image by birth. We see Jesus in a talented individual, in the fresh beauty of a child. We “see” Jesus. He said we would! And He warned us that many around us would find it strange that we say we know Him.

I’ve just watched the following video of Sandi Patty and Larnelle Harris singing “I’ve Just Seen Jesus.” If you watch this and don’t feel emotion , you might want to test your pulse to see if you’re still alive! (In my case, feeling that emotion expressed itself in sobbing till my make up was all on a tissue) But seriously, the talent of these two combined with the truth of what they share, is powerful.

But it’s not really about feeling emotional. After I watched this, the question came to my mind, “How then should I live?” That is really the issue. So we see Jesus, and feel that deep emotion when someone captures what it is like. And then the question is, “How is this going to effect my life an hour from now, a day from now?”