Jill Weatherholt

Writing Stories of Love, Faith and Happy Endings While Enjoying the Journey


The Storms in Life

stormThose of you who’ve followed my blog for any length of time know that my posts are typically brief. I’m aware that everyone is busy, so the last thing you want is a long-winded post.

This week, I’m stepping outside of my guidelines to share a story that I hope you’ll take the time to read.

Lately, many of my lifelong friends, as well as a few blogging friends have experienced challenges in their lives. Some have faced the death of a loved one, a life-changing illness, or an incident that has left one fearful of the future.  

Below, I’d like to share a story that was mailed to me by the mother of one of those dear friends. It was written by Roselyn Aronson.  My hope is that you’ll find it as comforting as I did.

Mr. Tentmaker, it was nice living in this tent when it was strong and secure and the sun was shining and the air was warm.

But, Mr. Tentmaker, it’s scary now.

My tent is acting like it’s not going to hold together. The poles seem weak and they shift with the wind, a couple of the stakes have wriggled loose from the sand, and worst of all, the canvas has a rip. It no longer protects me from beating ran or stinging flies.

It’s scary in here, Mr. Tentmaker. Last week I was sent to the repair shop and some repairman tried to patch the rip in my canvas. It didn’t help much, though, because the patch pulled away from the edges and now the tear is worse.

What troubled me most, Mr. Tentmaker is that the repairmen didn’t seem to notice that I was still in the tent. They just worked on the canvas while I shivered inside. I cried out once, but no one heard me.

I guess my first real question is, “Why did you give me such a flimsy tent? I can see by looking around the campground that some of the tents are much stronger and more stable than mine.  Why, Mr. Tentmaker, did you pick a tent of such poor quality for me and even more importantly, what do you intend to do about it?”

“Oh, little tent dweller,” as the Creator and Provider of tents, “I know all about you and your tent and I love you both.

I made a tent for myself once and lived in it on your campground. My tent was venerable too, and some vicious attackers ripped it to pieces while I was still in it. It was a terrible experience but you’ll be glad to know they couldn’t hurt me. In fact, the whole occurrence was as a tremendous advantage because it is this very victory over my enemy that frees me to be of present help to you.

Little tent dweller, I am now prepared to come and live in your tent with you, if you will invite me.  You will learn, as we dwell together, that real security comes from my being in your tent with you.  When the storms come, you can huddle in my arms and I’ll hold you. When the canvas rips, we’ll go to the repair shop together.

Someday, little tent dweller, your tent will collapse (for I’ve only designed it for temporary use).  When it does, you and I will leave together. (I promise not to leave before you do.) Then, free of all that would hinder or restrict, we’ll move to our permanent home and together forever rejoice and be glad.”


And the Answer Is…



For years, Derek and I have had a “friendly” competition each night. No matter how busy we are, we always take time out to watch Jeopardy together.

I’ll admit, he answers correctly more often than I do, but that’s okay.

This year, we’ve had a few surprises while watching.


Images Courtesy of JillWeatherholt.com

On January 16, 2016, during the final Jeopardy round, each contestant lost all of their money, leaving the show with no champion. Apparently this had only happened three times in the shows history.

That was a first for us, but what we saw a few months later, left us scratching our heads.


Was this a technical issue?


What the heck was going on? Why were things upside down and backward?

Another shot, which I failed to capture showed the host, Alex Trebek standing at the podium with a 1980’s perm.

We waited for an explanation, but none was given. That night, we turned off the TV wondering if there was some sort of technical glitch. Neither one of us made the connection that it was April 1st…April Fool’s Day.


Will either one of us become the next Jeopardy champion? It’s highly unlikely.

What’s made you scratch your head recently?


Just Call Me Jilly Bean

Image Courtesy of https://en.wikipedia.org

Image Courtesy of https://en.wikipedia.org

When I was a kid, I loved to watch Leave it to Beaver. Looking back, I think what I liked the most about the show were the character’s nicknames—Whitey, Lumpy and of course, the Beave. While in elementary school, I never had a nickname, but I always wanted one.

Later, the show Happy Days became one of my favorites. With nicknames like The Fonz, Ralph Malph, and Potsie, it seemed everyone had a nickname except for me.

Then in high school, it happened. I finally got my first nickname. It was Nerd. My best friend who I’d known since we were eight years-old came up with the name and from then on, we were both Nerds. Even today, we rarely refer to each other by our real name, it just doesn’t sound right.

In college, I became, Jilly Bean, Jillow, Pill and Jillster. Later, I was Sleepy. For someone who’d never had a nickname, these days, I find myself answering to many names.

Do you have a nickname?


What’s with this sock?

sockI’m popping my head up from a new project to see if any of you can answer a question.

We’ve all voiced our issues with the changes that occur within WordPress…some good, some not so good.  It’s free, so I tend to go with the flow.

One thing thing that’s boggled my mind is why a particular image I posted several years ago is clicked on practically every day, sometimes more than once. The post was an analogy between my writing time and the sock that seems to go missing after every load of laundry, but it appears the sock is the star of the post.

Any ideas on why this is? I find it odd that so many people are interested in a photo of a sock. Or perhaps, writing this post is my method of procrastinating.

Back to work.



One Year Later—Still Happy

HappyCould you be happy for an entire year?

Every day?

Even when it feels like the worst day ever?

My answer is YES! Of course, not ALL day.

Last year I wrote about my newly purchased one sentence happiness journal. Each day you write one sentence about what brought you happiness. For 365 days, I was diligent about recording my daily sentence. Even during the Blurb2Book contest when I felt like I was going insane because I didn’t have enough time, I made the time. And you know what? I’m so happy I did, otherwise I wouldn’t be able to go back and read these entries:

April 2, 2015: I’m happy that I entered Harlequin’s Blurb to Book Contest.

April 13, 2015: I’m happy that I advanced in the contest!

May 15, 2015: I’m scared, but happy I advanced further in Blurb to Book Contest —still in shock.

July 14, 2015: I’m happy that I submitted my completed book to the contest.

August 17, 2015: I’m happy I got a book contract today! In complete shock!

With the exception of the day I got the call from New York, offering a contract, the other dates would have been forgotten, had they not been documented in this simple journal.

Since this is a five year journal, now each evening as I record an entry, I can look at the line above and see what made me happy this time last year. 

Trust me, there are some evenings, after a tough day, I don’t think I can come up with anything. But taking the time to reflect on the day, there’s always something I can be happy about.






Why Blog?

sunset2Blogging is time consuming.

Blogging steals time from my family.

Blogging steals my writing time.

Blogging steals time from studying my craft.

Blogging steals my free time.

Is blogging worth it?

Anyone who’s been blogging for a period of time has more than likely declared these statements out loud, or at least thought them.

In the three-and-a-half years that I’ve been blogging these thoughts have swirled in my mind. Honestly, I’ve come close many times to bagging the blog. Yep, it’s true.

But when I get a comment, like the one I recently received, I know all of the time spent blogging has been worth it. In a post I’d written in January, I was moved by the words written by my friend, who many of you know, Gwen Stevens. With her permission, I’ll share it with you.

Jill, your journey in 2015 inspired me. I know it wasn’t easy, but “Do It Afraid” is a wonderful phrase to ascribe to, and I’m going to make it mine for 2016. Last month I decided to commit to finishing the novel I started back in 2009. I signed on with a writing coach through the University of Wisconsin’s Continuing Ed department, with a goal of finishing the manuscript by January 2017. Already the structure and discipline of this teacher have made a huge difference. Her feedback and encouragement have helped me wake up each morning, excited to write again, even with a full time job. I’m making time, not excuses. But I have you to thank for the inspiration. You showed me and all your readers that dreams can come true with the right frame of mind, so thank you.

Gwen’s comment made me think about everyone who’s followed my journey, and I theirs. We’ve shared personal struggles and experiences with each other and as a result, formed lasting friendships.

So, Gwen, thank you for making me realize why I blog.

I’d love to hear your thoughts on blogging.


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