Two Sleeps Before Christmas

I’m flooded with thankfulness from family, friends, and neighbors who volunteered their time and energy sacrificing to go out in this blizzard. Volunteer of whatever we needed whether food or supplies. Specialty potato puff appetizers arrived from my brother and his wife from out west. Steve’s friend-brass music group founder gifted us with an amazing goodie box. Our hearts rejoice with these thoughtful actions! Thank you!!!

Many are praying for health and healing for which we’re most grateful. You truly are the hands and feet of Jesus.

I’m seeing progress in Steve. He left the recliner for a bit yesterday and did a few minor tasks. Yay! Baby steps, little steps we are celebrating.

Here I go out to brave the blustery, blizzardy cold world out there. Skipper is calling for me to take a walk. To the mailbox and back again—that is my limit for now. Will take me longer to suit up than to accomplish the walk.

Hunker down, stay warm, and safe. CHRISTmas blessings to you & to yours 😊

“You might be thinking you don’t have the power within you to accomplish great and mighty tasks. Think again. Then fill in the blank below.” [From my book, “The Child becomes The Parent: Coping with Grief.”]

I can accomplish ____________________.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthened me.” – Philippians 4:13

How are you coping in this weather? Doing anything different/special this Christmas season? Love to hear from you.

I can accomplish ___________________________.

“I can do all things through Christ who strengthened me.” – Philippians 4:13

***How are you coping in this weather? Doing anything different/special this Christmas season? Love to hear from you.***

Post by Teresa K. Lasher, author of:

The Child becomes The Parent: Coping with Grief” and

Life is: Good, Fragile, and Precious–Loving yourself so you can love others

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Three Sleeps Before Christmas

“Fear not for I have redeemed thee, I have called Thee by name; thou art mine,” Isaiah 43:1

Maybe like me, your Christmas holiday plans are not going as expected. I’ve been in physical therapy since October trying to help mend some worn body parts. Hubby Steve tested positive for Covid Christmas week and is really sick. This obviously put a kibosh on being with family and friends. No shared food or gift giving for now.

He’s stuck with me and our dog Skipper. We’re stuck with each other in a COLD climate with a winter stay-at-home blizzard approaching.

My expectations. My thoughts. My ways. Notice all the “My’s” in this paragraph? I keep saying, “Your will, God; not mine.” If I’m being honest, I still want My way and My expectations fulfilled. Forgive me, Lord!

A long-distance friend wrote that it will be a “Silent Night Christmas for us.” Another friend wrote, “Peace. Quiet. Serenity.”

Not the thought that came to my finite brain cells. More like: Really? At Christmas? This can’t be! Big-time Bummer. Waiting to see how it all turns out is more nerve racking.

I shared with a friend how I woke early with thoughts of a story. I propped myself up in bed with my heating pad on my neck and shoulders and penned some words. She suggested that this book idea is “for such a time as this. Maybe this time of pain and suffering the Lord will use to grow you and so many of your loyal readers into being more like Him…believe the best rather than assume the worst. I’ll be praying.”

She also quoted an older man from her church who’s known for saying, “The Lord knows.” All these up-in-the-air decisions, celebration gatherings, physical and mental anguish, broken and failed relationships—the Lord knows. In fact, He knew about all of these areas of our life long ago. My part is to trust and believe He’s working all these things out for my best. He knows and cares.

That’s another thing I love about my friends. They’re honest, loyal, and not afraid to point me to the Light, my Saviour. Isaiah 43:1 is a great reminder, to fear not for I am redeemed. He knows me on a first name basis. I am His and He is mine. What more do I need?

How about you? Do you fear certain things especially this time of year? Can you call on the Great I am, God, to rescue you from those fears? There’s no better time than now to say, “Here I am, Lord. I believe in You and want you to be my redeemer-friend-Saviour.” It’s as simple as that.  

post by Teresa K. Lasher, author of:

The Child becomes The Parent: Coping with Grief” and “Life is: Good, Fragile, and Precious–Loving yourself so you can love others

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My Busy, but Blessed Day

While enduring physical therapy, I began feeling sorry for myself. My headaches persisted, leg ached, and my neck and shoulders complained often.

“Should I keep coming if I’m not sure this is doing any good? You’re adding another exercise?!” Yes, you’d probably say I was grumbling.

My therapist paused, then replied, “Consider the man in here earlier. He had only one leg, and wonders if he’ll ever return to work, or earn enough money to pay the bills for the family.”

Oh. I guess I have nothing to complain about, do I? A good reminder to be thankful for what I can do and what I do have.

We did some deep breathing and slowly releasing my breath. He continually reminds me to relax and loosen my shoulders. Relax? Are you kidding? This is December! Who relaxes in December?

“You’d better or you’re gonna wind up feeling even worse. Be positive. You’ll never mend until you allow your body time to re-generate and mend.”

Next on my agenda: Fresh Thyme to capture gluten-free onion rings for a holiday green bean casserole. This stop helped me temporarily forget my next appointment. These are tough to find, but I was grateful that a kind sales clerk led me to the shelf where there was a supply of them. This store is a specialty shop and I love to wander. Near the deli a young Dad was scooping up chicken noodle soup. His son was pushing a mini cart full to the brim with items.

“Looks like you’re a great helper,” I commented.

Dad smiled, patted his son on the back and said, “He’s a great helper!”

“Good for you. Merry Christmas you two.” I said with a smile as I walked away.

I couldn’t stall any longer so I took off for a dreaded dentist appointment. I’ve spent too much time in a dentist chair ever since my automobile accident just five months after I got married. Upside: felt good to have fresh, clean teeth. Downside: they discovered a fracture in a molar which requires a crown. In the waiting room, I noticed a Christmas tree adorned with ornaments for sale. Proceeds would go to help Women at Risk—a most worthy cause. I chose several for my Christmas list. 😊 Score!

Drove home after my dentist appointment, connected with my husband where he reminded me of his Christmas concert at an assisted living facility. I could sit with the groupies or band-aids—spouses whose husbands play in the Celebration Brass band. I was tired and came up with excuses, but in the end I did go and am glad I did.

Soaking in the joyous, meaningful Christmas melodies helped me unwind; relax just like my PT advised me earlier in the day. I started the evening tired and defeated. When I left the concert, I felt refreshed and renewed. The music reminded me of a baby boy born in less than ideal circumstances, raised and walked this earth healing, sacrificing. Christ gave His own life for mine so we might be free and whole enjoying heaven after this body gives out. His birth night was a Holy night—the most special Christmas gift of all.

Hark! The herald angels sing,
“Glory to the newborn King;
Peace on earth, and mercy mild,
God and sinners reconciled!”
Joyful, all ye nations rise,
Join the triumph of the skies;
With th’angelic host proclaim,
“Christ is born in Bethlehem!”

post by Teresa K. Lasher, author of:

The Child becomes The Parent: Coping with Grief” and

Life is: Good, Fragile, and Precious–Loving yourself so you can love others

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November, 2022 Newsletter

Grateful & Thankful ! 🙂

Darlene Larson & Teresa Lasher with her new book!

I’m so grateful this season for many things. As you can see from our smiling faces, I’m privileged to know a famous author and life coach, Darlene Larson. Her name, along with others, is listed on the acknowledgement page in the front of my new book, The Child becomes The Parent: Coping with Grief.

Listen to what Darlene has to say:

“About two years ago, I had the honor and joy of coaching Teresa Lasher (thank you, Teresa). A slice of her and her father’s story was talked about. It grabbed my heart. Then COVID steam rolled in and more of her story with her father unfolded. She published her book this fall and it covers MUCH in a loaded 50 page book about her father and her journey.”

We continue as friends and write together in community. What are you thankful for today?

Who would choose to walk a path of loss and grief? This path became Teresa Lasher’s story as caregiver to her elderly father. She wrestled with helplessness and exhaustion. Fighting for his physical, emotional, mental well-being and safety, he continued to slip further away during the Covid pandemic mandated isolation.

Desperately needing wisdom and preparation for existing and unforeseen battles, Teresa had to learn coping strategies. Granting herself permission to take time off, she often escaped outdoors to write and muse. She chose to exercise forgiveness where needed. When dealing with fear, doubt, and grief, God sent people who showed kindness at just the right time. In Teresa’s story of incredible hope and insight, she learns there are unexpected blessings in the midst of her grief journey.

If you’d like a copy for yourself, as a gift, or to be used in a group setting, local copies can be obtained through Kregel Parable Bookstore or online.

What folks are saying about the new book:

  • This is a very well written book, straight from the heart. It’s very easy to read and very relatable, having also gone through the slow loss of a parent as they struggled with dementia…”
  • This book was well written and easy to read. Teresa shared a very personal, difficult journey. It was a great encouragement to me, and showed God’s faithfulness each step of the way. Highly recommend!

Also available is my 90-day count your blessings & live life in the present devotional book, Life is: Good, Fragile, and Precious—Loving yourself so you can love others. What others are saying:

  • “A story of bravery in the midst of uncertainty…an inspiring and truth told book for those that are walking through a fearful and pain filled health diagnosis.”
  • “Teresa Lasher’s book has been written not only to tell her story of surviving a brain tumor but to give each of us hope and encouragement as we find our way through each day. It inspires us to live our lives to the fullest by learning to love ourselves so we in turn can love others.”
  • “This is a carefully crafted book that step by step helps readers look in the mirror and assess their own life journeys – especially when those tumultuous moments arise.”
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“The Child becomes The Parent – Coping with Grief”

I’m so excited to share with readers and writers my brand-new release! My dream is that this tool will help navigate the way through and beyond a grief journey. 🙂

Cover of New Book
Back Cover of Book

Available in soft cover or ebook format on Amazon or at a discount from me in person! If you’re in the area, let me know and I’ll see that you get your autographed copy.

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Merry Christmas from our home to yours!

Birthday Cake for Jesus
Reading Christmas Story together

MERRY, MERRY CHRISTMAS and Blessings from our home to yours,
from Steve and Teresa and Skipper too

Candles lit one by one
Sacred moments
Put aside exterior noise and commercial trappings
Sit down to view birthday cake for Jesus
One gold candle for the One to be crowned King.

Focus as family take turns reading out loud verse by verse
Oldest to youngest join in reciting the Christmas Story – the
Birth announcement declared in Luke 2
Rest of the world, life, put on hold
Sets us back over 2,000 years ago to Bethlehem, the town of David in Judea.

The angel speaks to Mary,
Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God.
You will be with child and give birth to a son,
And you are to give him the name Jesus.
He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High.
The LORD God will give him the throne of his father David,
And He will reign over the house of Jacob forever;
His kingdom will never end.” (Luke 1:29-33)

Let these sacred words sink in
Find a place to rest, take hold, germinate, and flourish
We sing together: “Happy Birthday to You. Happy Birthday to You, dear Jesus.”
Thank you for coming to earth.
Thank you for saving my soul and saving the world.

Thoughts to ponder – think back to how it must have felt for:
Zechariah and Elizabeth
Mary and Joseph
Shepherds watch their flock by night
Simeon, the Temple priest
Anna, prophetess, who never left the temple awaiting the Savior

Joy, fear, doubt, and elation
Surprise, confirmation, thankfulness, and devotion
Trust, praising God in the Highest, brokenness, and pain
Amazement and relief
Just to name a few


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Dad’s Presence – the Best Present

I see my breath in the brisk air. Frost covers the green grass where light snow once rested. Large ornaments hang from our 40-foot evergreen tree sheltering a life-size nativity scene. Faithful Joseph and Mother Mary hover close and guard precious baby Jesus—the baby who will be crowned King. Mary and Joseph know of expectations not working out as originally planned. Yet, their story unfolds exactly the way it was meant to.

Reminds me of our family story. We thought Dad and Mom would age together holding hands and watch our children and grandchildren grow. Instead we lived out a completely different story where Mom passed just short of their 40th wedding anniversary. Dad wandered from us like a lost puppy dog. I wish I could erase the years missed after he remarried and moved 900 miles away. We tried our best to connect with him, but his new family thwarted our efforts. After his wife’s passing, we became aware of the neglect he’d endured and extent of his dementia. Armed with prayer and support, we rescued Dad and brought him home.

That was then; this is now—Christmas Day. Dad is here with us!

From the closet, I bring down the white tablecloths and napkins: linens passed down from my Mom and her Mom. Running my hands over the fabric creases, I imagine those who’d broken bread together over these cloths. I set the table with our light blue china plates edged with petite white flowers—gifts from our wedding day 45 years ago. The night before an event, Mom and Dad brought out the special occasion best, set the table, and ponder where each person should sit.

I lift my husband’s Grandmothers’ orange and blue flowered serving bowls and gravy boat from the shelf. A few age stress marks give the pieces character. Just like us. Together, our family weathered sickness, death, re-marriage, and estrangement. We persevered.

Showering Dad with hugs, we talk of his old farm days, the appreciated tips he received for bussing tables as a teenager, and vintage cars.

Dad’s favorite foods adorn the Christmas table: ham, turkey and stuffing, and all the rest. Like old times, Dad and my brother-in-law fight for who gets the coveted turkey neck. Dad and my hubby’s Mom talk in their own little world. I smile as they share their aches, pains, and memories.

After dinner, we clear the table and prepare for the reading of Jesus’ birth.

For unto us a child is born … and he will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace – Isaiah 9:6

Dad settles into a  recliner and nods off. I hope he dreams good dreams. He might not remember our names or recognize us, but he still tells goofy jokes with joy in his eyes. Knowing he’s safe and having him here with us is my favorite Christmas present.


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I’m trying my best to be GRATEFUL. After all, yesterday was the day of THANKSgiving—all about the season of thankfulness; being grateful. We hosted a small gathering of four. Our daughter picked up my mother-in-law so we could be together. Plenty of food filled our table. There was no shortage of talk, laughter, and a good time. We tried not to focus on those who weren’t around our table. Note to self: sometimes when there’s so many people involved, it’s tough to make individual, meaningful conversation.

Just a few days before, I’d received a call from the Assisted Living Facility where my Dad has been for the last two and a half years. He tested positive for COVID.

What will the outcome be? I have no clue. But You do. Give our family the strength and wisdom to do/say/be according to Your will. Is it Dad’s time to join Mom? Is it time to leave this isolated, confused, angry planet? For our sakes, I hope not! But for his sake—Thy will be done.

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever…The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? The Lord is with me; he is my helper. I will look in triumph on my enemies – Psalm 118:1, 6-7

I’m thinking now about these words triumph on my enemies. What enemies could he possibly mean? I thought of a few: Discontent, anger, comparison, fear, anxiety, doubt. All those enemies creep into in my thinking.

The Lord is my Shepherd I have all that I need. This is true. The foundation of God’s throne is:

  • Righteousness (vs. dishonesty)
  • Justice (vs. unfair, unjust)
  • Love (vs. unloving, hate, scorn)
  • Faithfulness (vs. unfaithfulness, selfishness)

I’m thankful of the reminder that I need to focus on being GRATEFUL. We have so much. He is a good, good God. The Lord is with me. With us through it all.

P.S. Oh, and I forgot to add. We played a game. Yes, a GAME!! Now those of you who know our family know that my hubby, Steve, is not a gamer! Well, the four of us played our mandatory Thanksgiving Day game. Guess who won???  Steve’s Mom!  Plus, it was a game she’d never played before. Yay – way to go!!

Today’s prompt for the #Five Minute Friday group of writers is: Grateful.


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Gull Foot Prints in Sand

We all leave footprints. Heavier prints in mud or wet areas. Lighter, fainter ones in sand or drier surfaces. Some take time to disappear. Other footprints, such as those created in sand, take merely a wave and they’re gone for eternity.

While etched on whatever surface they land on, they make an impression. Question is: will it be a good, bad, or neutral impression?

Will people remember me and you as being a positive encourager? Or, a Debbie-Downer, talk about herself and her life, all the time?

Do you see signs of pride or humility? Helpfulness or selfishness? I LOVE being around and talking to folks who don’t have to be center stage. Someone who shows they care by listening and not filling in all the blanks for me. (I’ll admit that I struggle with this concept. My brain tends to go forward and search for the next thing I plan to say.)

I attended an event where the speaker had the privilege of working with Mr. Rogers, host and producer of the popular kid’s television show, Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood. Earlier in life Fred Rogers studied for a pastoral ministry, but decided on a different career path. The lack of wholesome, educational television for our youth caused him to do something about what bothered him. He chose to devote his life’s work to creating wholesome, educational television programs for kids. What an impressive legacy he left behind!

I learned from this event that everyone who came in contact with Mr. Rogers felt special. Young or old, able bodied, mentally or physically challenged, they were #1 in his book. He zeroed in on that one person—whomever was in front of him at that moment in time. Rogers possessed a gift. You felt you were the only one on Planet Earth. You mattered. Your thoughts, fears, dreams counted. Top Priority! Was he perfect? Of course not, and he’d be the first to admit his imperfections.

At the symposium, the speaker highlighted a trailer scene where Mr. Rogers struggles to pitch a tent. He tried and tried to set the tent up properly. It turned out all wrong. The audience laughs and Rogers tries again to set it up, but it still doesn’t work. Rogers laughs along with the audience, admits defeat, and asks for help. He then patiently moves on to something else.

We miss you, Mr. Rogers! Your positive influence, drive, concern for humankind will not be forgotten.

He left a footprint wherever he walked, whenever he spoke. I came away from the event inspired and motivated to do better, be a better person, and be attentive to my neighbor. My neighbor is whomever God places on my path. Encourage, pray for, brighten the way for those in my sphere of influence.

  • What kind of footprint or mark do you want to leave for the ones you love?
  • Name some ways you plan to leave those kinds of footprints.


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My calendar is peppered with the word “cancel.” It’s easier to erase an appointment if it’s written in pencil. At least the evidence of a failed, re-scheduled, or cancelled date doesn’t hit me in the face every time I view the page. Often I’ll place an un-smiley face nearby to remind me I was none too happy to “X” the event out. Most of the cancels can be traced back to COVID-19 pandemic of 2020.

This is the third or fourth time an event or series of events originally planned, and looked forward to, is put on hold or not happening at all.

  • Doctor appointment for my mother-in-law to see her new doctor
  • Breakfast/lunch date for my birthday with my sister (still hasn’t happened)
  • Travel down south to visit family

Disappointment, dashed hopes, plans, dreams gone by the wayside. That’s one perspective—the one I tend to linger in and gravitate to. Woe is me! I can’t do such and such. Go to this place. Have fun.

The flip side is an angle I must work on to develop and make it my go-to lifestyle and automatic reflex.

What if this happened (or didn’t happen), plans adjusted, cancelled because of something else underlying? Something bigger or better? Something neither you or I can see or know on the time spectrum.

Maybe the timing wasn’t the best. If I’d been down south, I’d missed something up north. Who knows? Don’t know if you or I’ll ever know. I’m reminded to be content in whatever circumstances I’m in. Right here and right now. Cancel, no cancel. Re-schedule or no re-schedule.

For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, declared the LORD. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” – Isaiah 55:8-9

What if I were to dwell on these words? My life would be filled with more joy and less stress. I’m see more blessings in the interim vs. just doom and gloom.

  • What ways can you change your thinking around to think less of what you didn’t get to do or be?

This post has been part of the Five Minute Friday writing challenge group. A challenge to write for 5 minutes on a given topic each week.

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