Tuesday, July 4, 2017



It's one of my very favorite days of the whole year.

4Th Of July #Card Free #Printable #4thOfJuly

I love the Fourth of July so much!!!!!!  (Check out last year's FoJ post here!!)

For us Americans (and even many non-Americans), today is a very, very important day. A special day for us to remember what happened all those years ago on July 4, 1776.

So what actually happened on that day that was such a momentous occasion?


It wasn't the day the Continental Congress decided to declare independence from Great Britain (that happened on July 2, 1776).

And it wasn't the day the American Revolution started (that happened back in April 1775).

And it wasn't even the day that the Declaration of Independence was signed.
(Although there are many disputes about whether or not that is true, the majority of historians believe it was signed on August 2, 1776. Several members, however, did not sign it until a later date, and two others never signed it at all.)

So what is so special about July 4, 1776?

Well, that was the day the Continental Congress officially adopted the Declaration of Independence.

Fifty-six men eventually signed their names at the bottom, knowing as they did so, they were putting their lives at risk. But they were willing to do that, willing to die for the sake of America. That America, their country, would be a free and independent nation.

Happy 4th of July

I am so thankful that I live in America... Even though sometimes it seems as if all is lost, we are still a blessed nation, and if we turn back to God, he will forgive our nation's sins and heal our land!

Love this song!!

I shared this poem last year, but it's gone through several edits and even won a contest since then!


If My People

~A Poem by Livi Jane~

The war may be over, the Revolution won,

But now, centuries later, it seems the battle’s just begun.

What happened to our rights, our liberty, our freedom?

Many think they are gone, that we’ll never again reach them.

Everything seems hopeless, our government a mess,

In my sorrow I wail, “Will anything turn out for the best?”

I lift my eyes upward, gaze out at endless sky,

I see an eagle soaring, gracefully flying high.

It suddenly hit me, my mind was cleared,

I recall a verse in my Bible held dear.

I know right at once what we need to do,

Fall on our faces and cry out to You.

For so many years we’ve ignored Your Name,

Promoted ourselves, we wanted the fame.

Turned away from our fathers’ beliefs and their ways,

Expecting to make it on our own, we swayed.

Wicked and evil as our nation is now,

Revival can come if we’re willing to bow.

Pray for the Lord to restore our great land,

Beg for His mercy, guidance by His hand.

Then the Star-Spangled Banner can continue to fly,

As the people beneath it lift the Lord high!


"If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land."
2 Chronicles 7:14 (NIV)


And now, I have a story I jotted down last month based off of these picture prompts:

My apologies if the second pic doesn't show up!

Special shout out to Kaitlyn K., who was so generous as to beta this for me! <3

The Choice:

By Olivia Jane

“I don't think I can do it.”
Those were the last words Carter Drechsel ever expected to hear himself utter. He was always sure. It didn't matter how impossible a mission seemed. He was in the Air Force, and did what needed to be done. The word “can't” wasn't in his vocabulary.
“You have to think about what's best for Saylee,” the calm voice of Dr. David Manning, the vet, told him.
“Doc, she's been with me for years. She's saved my life more times than I can count, and even though we don't work together anymore, she's still my best friend.”
Carter tightened his jaw to keep it from quivering. He glanced down at the German Shepherd lying at his side. Just as he’d told the doc, Saylee had been with him from nearly the beginning of his time in the Air Force. She was a bomb-sniffer, and did her job excellently. Saylee and Carter had seen and done just about everything, from jumping out of planes to performing dangerous missions on the ground. The bond between them was fierce. So much, in fact, that Carter had adopted the dog when the time came for her to retire. She'd lived a relaxing life back at home in Texas. Carter hung out with her as much as his busy military schedule allowed.
“I know it's a hard decision, Carter.” The old vet smiled sadly, sympathy glimmering in his silvery-blue eyes. “But it's a necessary one.”

Carter rubbed a hand over his face. “I mean, isn't there some sort of treatment or surgery she can have to remove the tumor?”

“Yes, but at her age, it would be risky. Besides that,” Dr. Manning continued, adjusting his glasses, “the cancer isn’t the only issue at hand here.”

Carter knew what he meant. Poor Saylee was nearly blind and hard of hearing. Her legs were stiff; they didn't work as well as they used to. Moving around much was a chore for the dog.

The white-haired vet gave Carter’s shoulder a squeeze. “At least think about it. It's the humane thing to do.”

Carter swallowed. “Thanks, doc.” He gave his dog’s leash a gentle tug and clicked his tongue. “C’mon, girlie.”

Saylee moaned and clambered to her feet. Her tail waved back and forth as she hobbled after her owner out to his sleek black truck.

Carter hoisted the dog up and into the passenger seat of the truck before climbing in the driver’s side and starting it up.

He sighed and shifted the gear. The vet was right, he knew. Saylee had lived a long, exciting life. She deserved to not have to suffer through her last days.

Out of all of the difficulties Carter had faced before in life, none of them compared to this. “Never leave a man behind,” they said in the Air Force. He felt that's what he would be doing if he put Saylee down.

Carter took his eyes off the road to cast a glance at his dog. The German Shepherd was watching out the window, seemingly content.

This is not going to be easy.


The day dawned bright and sunny. Birds sang joyful songs, squirrels chittered and the breeze blew gently.

Carter noticed none of it. All his focus was on Saylee as they headed into the vet clinic for the last time.

“It's gonna be okay, man.” Jourdan Gorsuch, a fellow airman and one of Carter’s best friends, appeared at his side. “We’re prayin’ for you.” He smiled and clapped the man on the back.

The smile was forced, Carter could tell. Nonetheless, he was grateful for his friends and their immediate offers to come with him to the clinic.

The morning had been spent stuffing Saylee up with as many treats as she could eat. One of the guys had even brought a hunk of steak for her to gobble up.

“You ready?” The gentle voice of Dr. Manning greeted Carter’s ears when they entered the room.

“Ready as I'll ever be,” he responded. He knew it was what he needed to do, but he didn't have to like doing it.

A blanket was laid out on the floor, and the German Shepherd was laid down on it. Each of the guys gave her a pat and whispered in her ear before backing away, allowing Carter to move in close.

Dr. Manning appeared, a syringe in his hand. “You know I hate being a vet at times like these,” he told the young airman.

Carter turned one corner of his mouth upward in an attempted smile, but his attention was all on Saylee. He closed his eyes as the vet administered the shot, injecting the needle into the German Shepherd.

Silence followed. Carter hugged Saylee, holding her halfway in his lap. She glanced up at his face and kissed him on the nose with her pink tongue, as if trying to say, “don't be sad.”

A sudden peace fell across Carter. He would miss his dog like crazy, but he knew had made the right decision by not letting her suffer any longer.

The minutes ticked by in a somber silence. Carter could tell the end was drawing near. He was vaguely aware of his comrades’ comforting hands on his shoulders.

With a final, shuddering sigh, Saylee’s eyes dropped closed, and she lay still. It was over. She was gone.

Suddenly, Carter couldn't contain himself. Tears streamed down his face, dripping down his cheeks and onto his dog’s still form. He felt someone slide Saylee out of his arms.

“Hey, bro, it's gonna be all right,” Hunter Webster promised, giving his friend a tight hug.

The embarrassment of sobbing uncontrollably in front of his fellow airmen was the furthest thing from Carter’s mind.

Memories of Saylee flew through his head, one after the other. The times she saved him and his friends’ lives. When they skydived together. The days they simply messed around and played tug-of-war.

He felt pats on the shoulder and back. The others knew what he was going through. They were losing one of their own.

When Carter’s cries had quieted to silent tears and he lifted his head from Hunter’s shoulder, one of the men turned him around.

Saylee had been moved to the nearby table. Jourdan held a folded American flag in his hands. Together, he and Lane--another one of the airmen--draped it over the form of Saylee.

Carter stepped forward, moving up to the table. He leaned over and put his arms around his dog one last time.

“I love you, Saylee,” he whispered in her ear. “I'll never forget you. Not ever.”

With one final squeeze, he turned away.

Hunter threw a comforting arm around his shoulders. “You okay?”

Carter looked up and met his friends eyes. Through his tear-filled vision, he whispered, “Yeah, I think so.” He smiled. “Thanks for coming.”

“We wouldn't have missed being here for anything,” Lane jumped in, appearing from behind.

“And we’re always here if you need anything, man,” Jourdan added, giving his dark head a firm toss.

“Thanks.” Carter feared that if he said much more, he'd start crying again. He looked around at his buddies. “I'll be all right.”

And for the first time since he’d made the decision to put Saylee down, he believed the words.


Thoughts? :)

I think that's about it for today! Just remember what the Fourth of July is really all about! 

And remember...
Let us not forget this Memorial Day. Thank you to all who have served and are currently serving!

They sacrifice so much for our freedom....we can never repay them. <3

~Livi Jane


  1. Happy 4th of July, Livi! That was a beautiful poem and a beautiful story as well. Thanks so much for sharing :)

  2. Oh, man. This story made me cry. Reading stories about dogs dying always makes me cry. Because I've felt it. It's not something I talk about very much, but my dog died a few years ago, now, and I still hurt so much just thinking about it. There's so much more I want to say....but I can't. It hurts too much to share what's on your heart.
    Good story.
    ~Hope M.