Sunday, April 27, 2008


I am tremendously thankful for the chance to go home again as well as for the awesome celebration of Orthodox Easter. (Sorry to just provide links - I'm in too much of a rush packing for our big drive to re-post all the photos again!)

Thursday, April 24, 2008

No Allergies!!

This morning I went for a jogg outside and the fresh smell of spring, flowers, trees and grass was delighting my olfactory senses. I was thanking God as I was running that when this amazing season comes around bringing life everywhere, I don't have to hide inside scared that allergies might trigger. I am very greatful for being allergy-free!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

For having someone there when I need to look up

Monday, April 21, 2008

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Waves on My Feet

The Gulf Coast isn't terribly far away, and although it's not the world's prettiest beach by any stretch of the imagination, it does fit the bill when one has had a long week and just wants to relax along the shore for a few hours. This photo is from last November. It is too easy to forget the simple things that restore us - after an hour walking on the sand, getting my cropped pants wet up to the knee from the waves, enjoying the sun's warmth (even though my fair skin typically keeps me out of the sun) - I was thoroughly refreshed. What a blissful day!
What simple things refresh you?

Monday, April 7, 2008

April 7th, 2004

I just got a call from my mother. All my family is back in Romania where I am from and I know that if my cell phone rings and I see "Ioan Ciupe" as caller ID (my dad's name), there is something serious going on and I must pick up. It was my mother and she just wanted to hear my voice and to tell me that she loved me, thought of me the whole day and prayed for me. It took me a few moments to realize what she meant by all these.

Today's significance totally slipped my mind although it's one of the BIGGEST, GREATEST, AMAZING reasons I am full of hope, faith and optimism. It was a date when back in 2004 I had a surgery performed in Romania. It was an operation to remove my left salivary gland because it was contaminated with cancerous cells. The surgery was successful and a few weeks after I recovered, I continued with six weeks of radiation treatment. The entire experience happened so fast that I personally didn't even have time to realize what I had, the not so pleasant outcome that I could have had and finally the amazing miracle God performed on me. I am alive today, cancer free and full of gratitude for this amazing gift God gave me for the third time: LIFE!!

(I say third time because the first time was when I was just first born, 29 years ago, then secondly was when I received the eternal life, and thirdly when God extended my earthly existence... my words are too poor to describe this special gift).

Friday, April 4, 2008


As simple as it may sound, I find great fun in watching the many bird varieties that populate our neighborhood and region. It's been exciting because there are more varieties here than anywhere else I've lived, including beautiful cardinals. This week, the pair of cardinals that have apparently lived in our yard ever since we've been here have been busy constructing a new nest, right outside our kitchen window. The female cardinal began with sturdy twigs that she broke off of a bush, and then worked her way up to finer twigs, grass, and leaves. The male cardinal helps occasionally and also spends a lot of time chasing off grackles and blue jays. I can't help but smile when I see them working away outside my window.

Photo from wiki.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

I will praise You in this storm!

I am just beginning to learn how to really praise God and trust Him in "storms." I am thankful for music that helps inspire and encourage me in this endeavor!!!