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Confessions of a Neglectful Blogger 
I have always thought myself a woman of words, and most of those who know me well would call me a woman of many words...or opinions - a woman of opinions consisting of many words in the telling - or something like that. When we redesigned the website in late '08, I anticipated I'd be sharing these many words via the website. You and I would have a virtual conversation going on weekly...or daily...or every few hours. I just knew I'd been born for blogging.

But I look over at the number of blog entries I've managed in almost three years time (3 years!) and realize I have more fingers on my hands than blog posts. How could this have happened to a wordy woman!

Well, for one, Facebook happened. I find I have enjoyed the relational feel of Facebook and have almost not missed a day of posting a status on my Shonda Parker profile. Facebook allows for "getting to know you," which I enjoy more than talking at you on this blog. What a shocker for me! I like listening as much as talking. Well, okay, that may be going a bit too far, but I do enjoy listening.

Then I got busy with the new course programs, adding more interaction on our student forum, then adding bi-weekly teleconferences each spring and fall, then increasing that to weekly for different modules of study. This wordy woman began to have to decide where her words were going to be directed, and her students won.

And then there was that bone tumor discovered in January 2010 that turned into bone tumors and soft tissue tumors, one of which decided to try to behave like a nasty cancer and press on my spinal cord, necessitating a complicated and lengthy surgery this past May...not cancer, just not a very benign-acting benign condition. Wait for it. Wait for it. Wait...Multiple, solitary hemangiomas of bone and soft tissue with aggressive factor. Multiple, solitary...why, of course, it could not have been anything other than paradoxical considering its chosen host. There is nothing quite like something destroying a gal's bone to make her begin to measure her words.

Now I am almost six months post bleeding out on the complete respiratory depression necessitating a nerve root severing resulting in partial paralysis of my a year and a half of planning life possibly without mama, without wife, without friend, without teacher, without herbal medicine woman, without Shonda words. Life and the Word that breathes it has become exceedingly precious.

This wordy woman is a little quieter, but I like to think with some of that stillness has also come a greater valuing of words and life shared.

I can't say I'm going to become a prolific blogger. This may, or may not, be the place God has in mind for me to interact with you. We'll see, but I can tell you where you can find me:

Trying to drench my husband and my children with my love and time;

Learning to be a better friend and sister to my brothers and sisters in Christ;

Teaching our students, answering their questions, helping them develop into the health educators they've been called to be in their homes and communities;

Having fun over on Facebook. If you're there, friend me up, and we can visit in one another's lives. I have my personal profile, Shonda Parker, and Naturally Healthy has its own page, too - you can "Like" it, if you...ahem, like.

And, then, of course, as I find my words once again, I'm writing a new book, Naturally Healthy Herbs, getting Mommy Diagnostics ready for reprint, restructuring our course programs to enable those who want the most words to have them, planning a speaking schedule for 2012, and developing and testing thirty new herbal formulas for the market...all in a day's work for a woman who, though she loves words, is a pitiful blogger.

May the Lord rain His blessings upon you, drenching you to the bone with His goodness and mercy...all the days of your life,

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CHANA's 1st Annual Conference Location 

Lodging and learning will take place in the lovely Jackson House, located in Monroe, Louisiana's beautiful Garden District. The house has 4 large bedrooms with 3-4 beds in each room and a formal living room we will convert into additional sleeping space for the conference.

The dining room seats 28 comfortably.

The over-sized den will be our learning area, with tables and chairs to comfortably seat 30.

Vendor space will be located in the breakfast room and sunroom.

Daily walks through the Garden District and along the levee of the Ouachita River are usually pleasant, even in late January in the Deep South.

Looking forward to seeing you here!

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Menu at CHANA - Jan 19 - 22nd, 2011 
I updated the CHANA info and program today, so scroll down for the updated info, and because I love knowing what my food choices are, I'm going to tantalize your taste buds...just a bit...with the proposed menu for the CHANA conference. There will be tweaks and additions, but here's what I'm thinking we'll cook for you:

January 19:
Breakfast: Yogurt, Granola, Fruit, Whole Grain Muffin Medley

Lunch: Catered by Daily Harvest,

Dinner: Asian Steak Salad and Baked Potato Soup

January 20:
Breakfast: Yogurt, Granola, Fruit, Free Range Eggs

Lunch: Catered by Cilantro, Fiesta Nutrition Center's cafe

Dinner: Asian Lettuce Wraps and Sesame Noodles

January 21:
Breakfast: Yogurt, Granola, Fruit, Scrambled Eggs (free range)

Lunch: Roasted Vegetable Ministrone soup and Whole Grain Cheese Bread

Dinner: GF Lasagna, Green Salad, and Rosemary Foccacia Bread

January 22:
Breakfast: Yogurt, Granola, Fruit, 5-Cheese Grits

Lunch: Tomato-Basil Soup and Chicken Caesar Salad

Dinner: Roast Beef Tenderloin with Mushroom Madeira Sauce, Smashed Potatoes, Roasted Asparagus, a Bayou Salad (no swamp stuff included).

January 23: Yogurt, Granola, Fruit

Hungry anyone?

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