Monday, October 31, 2011 0 comments

Learning New Ways...

Both of my businesses are very face-to-face relationship necessary. This requires me to drive roughly 100 miles a day. Most days include the trying-to-get-across-the-bridge experience.  Some go quickly, others not so much.  Take one morning not too long ago...

I headed to Louisville at the appointed time, giving myself an hour and 30 to get to my destination across the river.  However, I did not factor in the sprinkling of rain  Everyone moves slower in the rain - unless they're actually IN it then everyone's a sprinter. I take my normal route tempted to try a different way - maybe the stoplights won't hold me up too much.  Nah...stick with the original plan.  Well, I manage to get to the traffic parking lot about four miles from the bridge...about a hundred yards from the last exit to freedom.  Sheesh. 

So I reassess the situation.  My time is dwindling, my frustration is rising.  Maybe I should try the next exit and take the 2nd Street bridge instead.  Now, to do that, there are a few options off that exit.  I chose the unknown...I couldn't actually SEE the backup until I got into it.  Ok. No problem.  However, my bladder is now screaming for my attention.  It had already been my alotted hour & 30 with my morning Dew.  Not a good combination.  But that's the beauty of having a truck that can ride the shoulders.  All I could do at this point was laugh at the hilarity of it all.

After a short respite in the nearest restroom, it was back on the road again.  Willie Nelson wrote a theme of my life before I could drive. 

More choices. Again - I choose the slower route.  Not on purpose, it's just how it worked out.  More laughing.  Good thing I have a YouTube favorites playlist on my smartphone.

When I finally arrive at my meeting - thank God for a business partner! - I had an epiphany.  It was an illustration of many people's path to success.  We start out with that determined plan to reach a goal.  We have the timing, tools, everything in place, when all of a sudden the unplanned element throws us into a crossroads of choices.  We may have to change our plans to get to our desired goal.  We may have to take a detour along the way. We may have to make a pit-stop every now and then.  But with support (my partner to cover me), a good attitude (my perspective & YouTube motivators), and the resources (my trusty truck), my desired goal (the meeting) became reality.  Not necessarily in the way I originally planned it - but it happened. 

So for all of you with a goal: losing weight, taking your business to the next level, having a retirement fund, marrying that perfect someone, whatever that goal may be, be flexible along the way but stick to it. 
Saturday, October 8, 2011 0 comments

An amazing day ... can be found in the details

I had such a great day I just had to share it!

The morning started with a gloriously gorgeous sunrise.  A scene like that cannot be truly captured in a photo - and quite frankly, I just laid in bed with the cats and watched and thought.  Wonderful thoughts. 

Change scenes to one of my long-time traditions...Saturday morning cartoons!  I don't get too many Saturday mornings where I can relax on the couch (with my laptop now) and just watch cartoons.  Totally fun and totally outrageous!

Let's not forget breakfast!  Man.... (my roommate) Bill's son, Tom, turns 10 next weekend and he's here this weekend.  So in honor of Tom's pending birthday - a BIG breakfast/brunch:  biscuits & sausage gravy, bacon, cheesy eggs, and fried potatoes.  We were stuffed! 

Once that settled it was time to head out to work ON my Premier Designs High Fashion Jewelry business - not IN it.  I went to watch my "mama's" show.  It was so much fun meeting new ladies, playing in all her jewelry, and getting new ideas for my own shows.  The best part...she has some of the new holiday line!!!  That Buckle Up bracelet I'm simply in-love with?  She has it!!!  And did it ever look lovely on my wrist.  I've been on an "in-love" high all day. I'm using my free jewelry certificate from Premier to get that sucker!

Back home to spend some much needed time in the sun in my retreat area, worked out a bit, and updated my blog designs - among a few other things. Nothing major, but all the little things have added up to a pretty amazing day.   
Monday, October 3, 2011 1 comments

More changes coming!

This is an official notice....I am Arkham Executive's Wonder Woman!  There's a whole story behind it.  Of which, I'll write more later.  If you are curious and can't wait...comment and I'll message you directly!  Better yet - let's TALK!
Tuesday, September 6, 2011 0 comments

Facing Reality in Romania

In previous postings I have made a point to be positive, light-hearted, and optimistic.  Optimistic I will still be, but this posting is filled with some reality.

Some people wonder why we would travel to the other side of the world to minister to people.  For one, it's a calling of God.  That makes it's unquestionable to us who know what that is.  We just follow where God leads.  Another reason is having a passion for certain kinds of people - the lost, abused, abandoned, hopeless - those that need a ray of light.  Yes, we need that at home too.  But here's the thing.  Most everyone on this particular team has ministries back home where they share that light.  God has just called us to bring it to another group of people that is geographically challenging for us.  It's the sacrifice that we make leaving our home ministries to bring that hope here to the Gypsies of Tinca, Romania.

Another reality.  This is a spiritually dark place.  All the beautiful pictures we share and the uplifting stories only share the seeds that are being planted and some of the fruit that's come out of it.  As much progress has been made by Rachel and Dave and their team here in the village, there is much to do.  A lifetime of work and love to pour into a people who don't need to be "westernized," they need to be "Jesus-fied." 

Last night, one of the cute little Gypsy girls at the Isaiah Center got to spend the night.  She was playing just fine by herself, then with the other children - who were all a little rambunctious.  When all of a sudden she starts shouting out to one of the boys and he just looks like he was hit!  Our translator gets on to her.  This is all being said in the Gypsy language - Roma.  Albert told us she just cussed him out.  That sweet, fun-loving little girl just cussed and cursed that boy -- and laughed about it.  The scene may be funny; however, that is what she knows at home. 

Rachel & Dave shared with us how dark this place really is.  How much work has gone into each child and family that are associated with the Center in the form of soft touches, loving words, care packages, and other.  The vision for what it can become is there - a place that can house 200+ children, a community center where the families can come to get loved on and learn life skills, a ripple effect that can reach out into the world.

And every time we come love on a child, shake hands with the adults, say "buna-de-mon-yet-za" (good morning) and smile, we are planting a seed.  There are not a lot of smiles outside the walls of the Center.  But each time we we can pray for them, touch them, love on them and say "Isus Te Ubeste": (Jesus loves you), they not only hear the words, they feel the actions.

That's why we do it.  So they can feel a perfect loving Jesus through we who are just as imperfect as they are.  So keep praying - for the full-timers, for the people, for those who are able to share when they can anywhere in the world including your own backyard.

Monday, September 5, 2011 0 comments

On the way...

 Most mornings we walk from the hotel/motel to the Isaiah Center.  Each morning we pass by all kinds of Romanian houses.  This one is my favorite.  It has such a whimsical touch to it.  And there's a little old man that lives there and tends to the yard and flowers.  It's looks like a picture right out of a magazine!

And the people we see...groups of older people sitting on a bench out side their house, the dogs laying on the sidewalk or in the gateways, the cow grazing in the ditch, the morning trek of some from the market with horse and wagon.  One morning the Christy, the girls and I were walking along and this work truck drove by.  The guys in the truck had some serious horn-honking skill...we got cat-called in Romania!  I know I stand out from a crowd, but I've really tried to keep a low profile.

Over the weekend our translators and Dave shared some history of the region with us.  Turns out by bovine brothers & sisters were Hungarian just 60 years ago!  Where we are in Tinca used to be part of Hungary before World War II.  So this mile marker you see with Tinca at the bottom and Salonta at the top...Salonta is the Hungarian name of the town.  Who knew? Now I do...

And the main  See how it's paved in blocks.  Most of it nowadays has been paved over, but the roads were paved in blocks.  Blocks that were laid by slave labor during the war.  I can't even imagine what that would have been like! 

So just a couple tidbits to start the day.

Sunday, September 4, 2011 0 comments

Day in Oredea

Shopping at the Sunflower Shop @ Caminul Felix, a ministry that takes in abandoned children around the world.  Getting a few goodies for people back home.

Me & Peep just hanging out in the Sunflower Shop...

Making new friends in the Sunflower Shop...Christy & the team take a while when shopping.

This is from the Overlook atop Oredea.  That's the city behind me.  I felt like I could fly!

It was a nice team day in Oredea.  Seeing the sites, learning the history a little more.  There are team pics on facebook that will be shared. 
Thursday, September 1, 2011 0 comments

Another day with the Gypsies

 Lulu here.  We've been going to the village almost every day this week to do a VBS for the Gypsy village. And apparently our team is one of their favorites.  We bring a lot of music and drama complete with costumes and props.  Then crafts and food enough for 200. Today we ran out of food at 150 - so tomorrow we will prepare for 200.  And tomorrow's character story is Esther.  Complete with full princess regalia.

Each morning the team prepares the meals which consist of some sausage meat, bread and a cucumber.  The get a little cup of soda too.  I helped as much as I could, but Christy wouldn't take me to the village.  Maybe something to do with the other cows getting jealous.  That, or some Gypsy child would want to keep me.  I wouldn't make it back home!

Stephanie, our nurturer and baker of the team, loves to spoil the full-time missionaries here with lots of sugary treats.  And Dave, who's originally from England, loves getting this spoiled.  Here, he's licking the cake batter bowl.  This part is one of our favorites...spoiling the missionaries. 

Wednesday, August 31, 2011 0 comments

Nap-time in Tinca

Nap-time around the Isaiah Center in Tinca, Romania.  Wherever's comfortable for you.  Curl up, cuddle up, and sweet dreams for all.
Tuesday, August 30, 2011 0 comments

What a start to the mission trip!

It was a great start to my first international flight!  What a team we have!

We flew from Louisville to Washington, DC then on to Munich.  That Munich flight was educational and entertaining. Christy shared some new Romanian words with me...these won't be spelled RIGHT, but how they sound....multimesst, coupleacherries, cheypach, stauch-shay, gata, and a few others she tried to remember but got backwards.

The international airports can get kinda crazy. Surprises me anyone can find their way around ANY airport really.

And all the bags!!!!!  Thank you to those who gave us a little extra money to get all the bags here.  The poor van that transported from Budapest to Tinca, Romania literally blew a tire.  But our fearless driver took care of everything.

We're now into doing VBS in the Gypsy village.  The sights and sounds have been an adjustment and so has the massive hornet-bees that showed up in the shower with Christy. 

Ok...quick note & off to the garden!
Friday, August 26, 2011 1 comments

My First International Flight!

Hey!  Lulu here. Christy is busy packing.  Why she waited till the morning OF a mission trip....that girl...

But I'm ready to GO!!!
Wednesday, August 17, 2011 0 comments

Meet Lulu...

Hi!  I'm Lulu and I'm helping Christy get ready for her Romania mission trip.  I even get to go with her!  It's been years since I've gotten to travel. All the sites I'll get to see - the people I get to meet!

A little about me...I'm a Texas girl at heart. Love the wide open spaces and fresh green grass.  Living in the city brought some challenges, but I've overcome a lot.  There was that run-in with Mrs. B once...How was I to know those flowers were prize-winning?

I'm a naturally happy cow.  Life's too short - and so am I - to let life squash ya.  And good for Christy that she's taken the day off. So she's left me in charge.  I'm up for it.  Although from the looks of it, Christy needs more than me to keep things in order.  I'd better get to it!  So long for now y'all! 

Thursday, August 11, 2011 0 comments

Now what is she doing?

Is anyone wondering what in the world I'm up to lately?  I'm going to tell you ... soon.

Let me just say for now:
      • New business
      • 2 business partners
      • New ministry
      • Calendar filling up nicely
      • Opportunities galore
Still curious?  I'll post more in bits...
Tuesday, July 5, 2011 0 comments
Dear Friends and Family,
I pray post finds you doing well.  I’ll just get right to the point.  I need your help.  Prayer warriors and financial donors alike. 

God has again opened a door of opportunity for me to be a part of something bigger than myself – bringing hope to a culture of people who’ve had no hope for generations – the Gypsies of Romania.  Our team of 11 will be coming along side Rachel Ross, full-time missionary and founder of Forget Me Not Ministries, and Dave Truss, a missionary from England, to minister to the people of Tinca.  Rachel founded the Isaiah Center in Tinca just four years ago, and together they show the love of Christ by teaching and training the children who have been abused or abandoned. They pour into these kids showing and teaching them a better way of life. The Lord is blessing their efforts to use these children as the generation to break this life-long cycle of abuse and Godlessness, and to spread through them the saving grace of the gospel to the Gypsy people.

We are in the final planning of our activities and I am very excited to share with you what He has laid on our hearts for this trip:

  • 5-day VBS in the Tinca Village.  This will include singing praise & worship songs, people skits, a devotional, crafts, games and lunch.  Last year we ministered to over 200 children!
  • Various construction needs at the Isaiah Center (to be determined)
  • Prayer walk through Tinca and the Gypsy village that lies on the outskirts of this small town
  • Help Dave with his Futbol ministry in the Gypsy village
  • Visit, minister and pray with the Roma families as we deliver their monthly care packages
  • Minister to, replenish and build up Rach & Dave to give them the strength they need to continue His work

We still have a lot of preparation to complete before we leave and another team fundraiser.  That’s why I’m sending you this letter.  Support through prayer is priority one. Prayer is the fuel that will allow us to be successful as we follow God’s leading. So please pray often for unity, focus, and safety of our team. But to be honest with you, I just don't have anywhere close to the $2,100 needed laying about the house. So, I decided to send letters to people and ask for something I don't usually ask for in addition to prayer - money.  If you feel led, I'd love if you could financially support me on this mission trip. A little, a lot, any would be great.  I need to raise $2,100 total by August 1.  To help support me financially, you may go online to and click on Make a Payment.  After logging in, select the trip and type in my name (Christy Smallwood).  Your online sponsorship will go directly towards my trip account, and you will be credited for your tax-deductible contribution.  If you are unable to give online, you may make a check payable to Northside Christian Church and write “Romania 2011” on the memo line.  Then please mail that check directly to me – not the church (@ 4640 W Cole Rd., Salem, IN 47167).

Pray that all we say and do will be glorifying to God.  Pray that our efforts in helping Rach & Dave as well as the children and adults of Romania will be blessed as we serve God’s purposes for our being there.  And knowing that you are praying would mean a lot to me.  Not only that, but when you are supporting me financially or in prayer – you become part of our team.  I will also be in prayer for you and update you on our progress through facebook and blogging. You can join our group on facebook by looking up Romania Mission Trip.  Thank you so much for your prayers, support and consideration.  May God continue to bless you and your family.


Romans 10:14-15b:  “How shall they call on him in whom they have not believed?  And how shall they believe in him of whom they have not heard?  And how shall they hear without a preacher?  And how shall they preach, except they be sent?”
Monday, July 4, 2011 0 comments


Let us never forget, Freedom
- Independence -
comes with a price

Tuesday, June 28, 2011 0 comments

"You've Got Mail"

What is it with the anticipation of getting that next message from someone you like? 

Remember that movie, "You've Got Mail?"  This movie's theme is a classic.  Two people in love through the written word - email in this movie, letters in the Judy Garland classic, "In The Good Old Summertime."  Turns out for each of these, the two people actually disklike each other in person. One finds out the other is their secret message "love," ditches the face-to-face, and then proceeds to change the perception of the real-life relationship.  Sweet stuff. 

What intrigues me most is the joy in the anticipation of getting that next message.  I don't have the pleasure of one of those movie experiences, but I do enjoy anticipating a next message.  Here's something more to think about though...what if I had that much joyous anticipation in what God had to tell me?  What's HIS next message to me?   " <3 U no matter what, Conquered 4 u, Providing 4 U, Keep Going! Right w/U"  What's His next message to you?
Wednesday, June 22, 2011 0 comments

Progress...not Perfection

So I was having a "morning."  You know.  You've had them.  You start out pretty optimistic, then all of a sudden you're in the midst of putting out fires you have no time for.  There goes the "plan."  There goes that few precious moments of actual accomplishment.  Needless to say, I was "off."  Which as a woman can happen on a regular basis - emotions, you know. 

At just the right time a friend calls me.  He had no idea I was in the mental place I was; however, he quickly found out!  But this is one friend who does not intimidate easily.  He proceeds to tell me a mantra to say..."Progress not Perfection."  This is not just for people that I am working with, but for myself. 

How often I forget that I can never be perfect.  No matter how hard I may strive for it, "we all fall short of the glory of God."  Even a transformation specialist needs to be reminded. It's ok to be a work in progress - because that's what we are!  There should be more fun in the construction of it...and the redecorating.  I prefer excellence over perfection.  I'll aim for balanced, joyful, content in all things, finding adventure around every corner, progressing to my fullest potential, and living life abundantly. 

So say it with me...Progress not Perfection, Progress not Perfection, Progress not Perfection...
Sunday, June 19, 2011 0 comments

Storm Warnings

We all have storms in our lives.  My life has been a whirlwind lately, in a good way.  But thre are still those times...

And in case you missed the excitement this morning...

Friday, May 6, 2011 0 comments

The Greenhouse Effect.

I've been helping out a friend in his greenhouse the past few weeks.  I'm basically working for flowers, who doesn't love that! 
Well, this week the weather has been pretty stable.  So what happens when the sun comes out?  The greenhouse temperature goes from 80 to 100 degrees in less than 5 minutes.  It's amazing.  I love it for the most part.  It's like going to a sauna without paying or taking your clothes off.  The downside...I can't take my clothes off!  

When I can go into it looking somewhat presentable, but come out looking like a mowed over weed - dirt and all, it makes me appreciate running water and hot showers all the more.  Yesterday the temp started out in the 50s, I wore three layers of clothing to stay warm.  But then the sun came out.  I did manage to shed two layers.  Not to mention nine pounds since I've been helping out (changing the diet and being more active makes all the difference!).

The blessing of working in the greenhouse is that I get to use the flowers as a fundraiser for my Romania mission trip this fall.  I am taking orders and once I have a load then a delivery date and place will be set-up.  I'm listing the prices and some pictures here and I have an album set-up on facebook. 

Hostas = $6 ea

Hanging Baskets = $15 ea (purple, pink, blue wave, yellow, red million bells, and mixed baskets)

Flats = $15 ea ($1.50 per 3-pack) (begonias, impatients, marigolds, periwinkle, rose moss, TOMATO, green peppers, sweet banana peppers)

 Planters = $15 ea (geraniums, black-eyed susans - yellow & orange)

Geranium (single) = $4

Zinnia (single) = $3

Perrenials = $5 ea
--Coreopsis (yellow, red, pink), Gallardia (red, red/yellow), Butterfly bush (blue, red), pincushion flower, lavendar, Rose Mallow (pink, red), spike speedwell, tritoma, bee balm, cleome (spider plant)