Why I Spell my Name Funny

February 28, 2008

question-mark.jpgPeople are always commenting about the unusual way I spell my first name. I usually say, “There’s a story behind it. I’ll tell you someday when we have more time.” Today’s the day.

I have kind of a quirky personality that manifests itself in some rather unusual ways. How I chose to spell name is one of them. I figured since my real name is Cynthia, I was free to rotate the way I spelled my nickname (Cindy, Cindi, Cyndi, Syndy. Sindy, Cindee, Cyndy, etc. ) depending on my mood. I thought it was just fun — but it drove most people crazy — especially when I began my speaking ministry. Event organizers would call me with panic in their voices, “Oh dear! Cyndy I am so sorry! I think I may have your first name spelled incorrectly in our publicity material. I saw it at “fill in the blank church” and it was spelled differently.”

I would quickly attempt to allay their fears by explaining that they were free to spell my name any way they pleased. After all, that’s what I did. Most event planners were not amused. I think the people with the administrative gifts needed to successfully plan events are not the type that “get” this kind of creative expression.

When my first book was scheduled to be released, my publisher insisted I make a decision about the spelling of my name — and STICK WITH IT. Publishers may have a greater understanding of “creative types” but they have limits. ONE spelling of an author’s name is one of those limits.

So what to do? So many choices… Was I a Cindi? Or a Sindee? Or perhaps the traditional Cindy? Maybe I should just stick with Cynthia? I decided this was too big a decision for me and asked God to PLEASE HELP! My answer came (BIG SURPRISE!) from the Bible.

I happened to be studying the life of Abraham in Genesis. I noted that God changed both Abraham (formerly Abram) and Sarah’s (formerly Sarai). I noticed that God removed the “i” from Sarah’s name when she quit relying on her own wiles and began to trust God.

I began to think about the traps people in a public ministry often face and how easily pride can seep in. I knew how much God HATES pride. And I so hate disappointing God. I also knew that any success I might have in the future would be because God allowed it — and I also knew that dependence on Him was the power behind my minstry. Most importantly, the whole reason I was writing and speaking was to glorify HIM — and build up HIS body.

RIGHT THEN I HAD MY ANSWER. I took the “i” s out of my name and replaced them with “y” s. Now each time I see my name on a book or in publicity materials advertsing an event I’ll be appearing at, I am reminded that it’s not at all about ME — it’s about YOU, LORD.

So please spell my name correctly — Cyndy — with TWO powerful reminders that there is only room for one “I AM” in my life.

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There’s always a reason…

February 22, 2008

procrastination.jpg“If at first I don’t succeed, there is always next year.” Procrastinator’s Creed

We’ve all been guilty of that “I’ll do it later” mentality.  And there are lots of reasons for procrastinating – some of them even good reasons.  The task may seem too overwhelming, we don’t know where to begin, we’re afraid of failing  — or simply — we don’t like doing the job at hand. 

I have some good news —  overcoming procrastination is less about developing will-power, and more about creating an environment that is conducive to completing the task. It’s hard to make yourself do something you hate — but you can make yourself hate it a little bit less. 

Here are some ways you can curb your tendency to procrastinate….

·         Break tasks into small pieces. Make a list of the steps you need to take to reach your goal. Then tackle one step at a time, until you’ve finished the list. It’s easier to motivate yourself to work on several small jobs rather than one huge task.

·         Start your day with a task that you tend to put off. Whatever you normally hate to do — clean the kitchen, do paperwork, make sales calls — get it out of the way first thing in the morning. The rest of the day will be easier.

·         Commit to spending just 15 minutes a day working on a task you’ve been putting off. You’ll be amazed at how much you can get done in 15 minutes. And you’ll probably work even longer on your project once you get started.

Procrastination has a way of ruling our lives if we don’t bring it under control. It takes wisdom and effort to break the clutches of procrastination, but the results are well worth it.  As one of my favorite Proverbs says  “All hard work brings a profit, but mere talk leads to poverty.”


Snow Day Survival

February 5, 2008

snowball.jpg

Here in Nebraska, we never know when a snow storm is around the corner. For parents, whether working at home or away, snow days can be a challenge. Here are some tips gathered from parents to help not only survive – but thrive – the next time a storm has you stuck indoors. 

Snow Day Co-op

This can be a life saver for parents who work outside of the home. Make a pact with two or three other families to take turn caring for each others’ children on snow days. It’s easiest if families live nearby.

Mad Science

Here’s what you need: small-mouthed jar, a little vinegar, baking soda and some balloons. Put an inch of vinegar in the jar. Put two teaspoons of baking soda in a balloon. Attach the balloon to the jar.

Now watch as the balloon inflates!

Throw a Surprise Party

One mom says, “A while back I needed something to overtake my daughter’s boredom. So, I surprised her with a party. Just the two of us. I don’t remember what the made-up reason was. I got out left over party supplies and she had a blast!”

Build a Fort

Turn a room into a fort by hanging curtains across a doorway. Have the kids pread old quilts on the floor and pile pillows in the doorway for a barrier. One mom says her boys spent all of one day playing in their fort with their plastic army men and little cars. “I brought in lunch on paper plates and let them have mess call there, too.”

Ask the Girls Over for Tea

Brew a pot of tea or make some hot chocolate and ask neighborhood moms and their daughters over for a tea party. Store-bought or homemade cookies can round out the feast. Have the girls bring their dolls to sit with them at a specially decorated table while the moms enjoy time to chat.