☼

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Johnny's

Oh boy! Look what came in the mail on Valentine's Day!


Er...let's try again...


If I could just move Fioré's behind a bit...


There! Johnny's Seed Catalog is a delight through and through. This year, I'm most interested in these...



If you visit Johnny's, they'll send you a catalog of your own. I'm certain that you'll love it as much as Fioré and I do.



Oh, and see why I'm in love with herb disks right *here* on this video. Fascinating!

While we're discussing plants...let me share this info on Christmas cactuses/cacti.

Christmas cactus will bloom if given long uninterrupted dark periods, about 12 hours each night. Begin the dark treatments in about mid-October to have plants in full bloom by the holidays. You can place the plants in a dark closet from about 8 P.M. - 8 A.M. each night for 6-8 weeks or until you see buds forming. Christmas cacti will also bloom if they are subjected to cool temperatures of about 50 to 55 degrees F, eliminating the need for the dark treatments. Plants should be blooming for the holidays if cool treatments are started by early November.
Source

Guess my sister was right after all! And, guess what just hit the basement this morning? I'll report back in a month. Will that be in time for Easter?

Happy Tuesday, Everyone!

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Power of Suggestion

Did you have a good Valentine's Day? I'm scooting around this morning to snoop and see what you have to say about it. My day was lovely, but I want to tell you about my Valentine's Eve. Don't get all **twitterpated, it's just funny. At some point in the night I became aware of my beloved standing over me offering something, something that smelled just like peanut butter. I'll use dialogue as it's so much easier that way.

I: What's that?!

He: A peanut butter sandwich.

I: Why?

He: (somewhat surprised) Because you asked me for one.

I: I asked you for a peanut butter sandwich? When?

He: Just now, you asked me for a piece of bread.

I: Are you kidding me?

He: Nooooo, and I repeated that back to you and you added 'with peanut butter on it.'

I: Well you know what you can do with it!

He: (muttering) Guess I'll be eating a peanut butter sandwich.

It's true love when your beloved eats a peanut butter sandwich that you ordered in the middle of the night. I was telling my son and daughter-in-law about this and my daughter-in-law told me that my son talks all the time in his sleep and that she just has to ignore it. Good advice for my darling, too, I guess. I truly had no idea that I talk/issue orders in my sleep.

Yesterday, I realized once again how powerful my suggestions are. I asked my sister how her Christmas cactus was doing. (Mine has one measly bud and I have followed "the rules" perfectly.) Again, dialogue...

She: Oh my yes, thank you for telling me how to take care of that cactus...it's loaded with blooms and has been blooming for months.



I: It has?!

She: Oh yes! Why within days of bringing it out of the basement it was blooming.

I: Out of the basement?

She: Yes, just like you told me. You said to leave it down there for a couple of months and forget about it.

I: Noooo, that's for geraniums, not for Christmas Cactuses.

At which point, my niece interjected...

"That Cactus was so happy to get out of that cold, dark basement it was willing to do anything."

Hmmmm, in that case, I think mine has earned some time in the basement!

Have a wonderful Monday, Dear Ones.

**twitterpated: excited for no account such as some (you know who you are) were wont to be over my Valentine Tea. Check comments for my response.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Prayer

Prayer is the language of a person burdened with a sense of need. It is the voice of the beggar, conscious of personal poverty, asking of another the things that are needed. It is not only the language of lack, but of felt lack, of lack consciously realized. "Blessed are the poor in spirit," means not only that the fact of poverty of spirit brings the blessing, but also that the poverty of spirit is realized, known, and acknowledged. Prayer is the language of those who need something — something which they, themselves, cannot supply but which God has promised them, and for which they ask. In the end, poor praying and prayerlessness amount to the same thing, for poor praying proceeds from a lack of the sense of need, while prayerlessness has its origin in the same soil. Not to pray is not only to declare there is nothing needed, but to admit to a non-realization of that need. This is what aggravates the sin of prayerlessness. It represents an attempt at instituting an independence of God, a self-sufficient ruling of God out of the life. It is a declaration made to God that we do not need Him, and hence do not pray to Him.

'Do you expect to got to heaven?" asked some one of the devout Scotsman.

'Why, man, I live there,' was the quaint and unexpected reply. It was the pithy statement of a great truth, for all the way to heaven is heaven begun to the Christian who walks near enough to God to hear the secrets He has to impart.

~selections from The Classic Collection on Prayer by E.M. Bounds




Keep on asking and it will be given you; keep on seeking and you will find; keep on knocking and the door will be opened to you.

Matthew 7:7


Saturday, February 14, 2009

Happy Valentine's Day

...or as my daughter used to say, "Happy Valentimes Day!"



If you have not yet visited Warm Pie, Happy Home, please do; it's always a happy place where Ruthann dispenses excellent advice and ohhh, that playlist!

Picture Source

Friday, February 13, 2009

Planning a Valentine Tea

I am planning a Valentine Tea for my Beloved. He's pretty much a coffee drinker to the core. Hot chocolate every now and then and, just recently, I've been able to introduce tea. The Chocolate Raspberry Bliss shown is going to feature prominently at my tea party. You can find the mousse recipe I'd like to try at Celestial Seasonings. I've been wandering through Blogdom looking for something to complete the menu...perhaps some tea sandwiches such as my own Garden Patch Sandwiches (in the recipe section of my sidebar) and something more for dessert. Alice at Tea in My Cup (even if she is on an extended break from blogging) is my first stop. Also there are some delicious sounding coffee drinks posted at Kettle and Cup.

I did bake some cookies last evening...not a hit with the man...oh dear. Maybe that frosting will spiff them up. It occurs to me that the most romantic thing about these cookies is not that they are in the shapes of hearts and strawberries, but that they were baked on a silpat "made in France."














Today, I am busily working on Valentines...most especially the one for my grandmother as she is the one who adores this holiday. I'll be selecting one from Quill Cottage because Miss Sandy always provides great tutorials.

Have a wonderful Friday...gotta skate!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

My Favorite "Bulletin" Board



A week ago, I was feeling much less than enthusiastic about blogging. Today I am positively giddy about it. The joy of blogging, for me, really depends on whether systems are up and at'em. I am sure that all those who read and love blogs appreciate Blogdom for the tremendous bounty of ideas. Creativity thrives in Blogdom.

I find plenty of material to think about and lots of ideas at WindLost, one of my favorite blogs. And it's not because Terri and I share similar tastes either. In fact, her taste is much more elevated and sophisticated than my own. Spending time there is a delicious escape, which I tremendously enjoy. But don't let that fool you as she can write with such poignancy that she'll break your heart. That's how I first found her when I read of her experience on a plane in danger of crashing. (See September 26, 2007)

Lately, Terri's been doing a series on office makeovers and she's working on her own home office, too. You'll find the above photo on her These Are a Few of My Favorite Things post on January 2, 2009. Well don't you know that this idea just kept spinning around in my old head until it finally resulted in my going to actually look for the wonky old frame. I knew I already had one, but where?! Found it in the basement in pretty tough shape and home to a spider or two.

This is where John came in..."John, this old frame...can you fix it?" (Course I know that he can fix anything!)

I didn't think much more about it until a few days ago when I visited John's house where I thought he'd be working on ceilings or something. No, poor man had taken the frame all apart, recut each section, and glued it all back together using some special exterior framing to hold it together. Until today, I didn't even realize all that he had done for the sake of my request. I feel so loved...



Yesterday morning when I propped my "new" frame up in the bay window, I was so happy with how it looked right there that it almost didn't make it the rest of the way to the sewing room wall, but it did and I just love it! It's the best bulletin board I've ever had.

The rest will be a little picture story — simple and sweet.










(First bulletin photo allowed to stand after much consideration.)

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Another Kitchen Story

Sure. Like I'm going there again...

Okay, I'll tell you this much of what I learned. Supposedly, the number one way to tell that a kitchen is outdated is if the appliances are anything but steel. While steel appliances are not in my budget, this doesn't prevent me from putting my best foot forward to decorate my refrigerator.



There's that charming calendar thingy that we use for writing notes. Important stuff like the mortgage is due! Then there's the handy-dandy scissors holder. I just made that today as the other one cleverly crafted from a pot holder belonged to my sister. So did the red-handled scissors that were in them for that matter. They're packed now. For mine, I used one of those crocheted dishcloths that are ubiquitous. I have a lovely number of them and use them in many different ways, but never as dishcloths. I defy any one of you to tell me that it's not simply sweet!

Then there's that darling little sampler there...



Alison at Posie Gets Cozy tells all about how to find and do one of your own on her January 18, 2009 post. I think it's a great way to design an embroidered pillow or something. If nothing else, it's a great way to waste an hour.

Have a wonderful Tuesday!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Valentine Idea from MGCC



Do you need a quick and easy, delicious and fun idea for Valentine's Day? Visit Mennonite Girls Can Cook and snag the Five Minute Chocolate Cake in a Mug recipe posted by Betty R. Purchase a sweet Valentine's mug from the dollar store and make a mug kit using the dry ingredients from the recipe. Cover with some red plastic wrap and attach the recipe directions with a pretty bow. I'm definitely doing at least one this week. It'll surely look better than this original that we enjoyed. I think that there's room for experimenting with the recipe, too!

(If I'm not already known for my wild leaps in all directions, I will be after this post.)

All week long I have thought about the Elizabeth Goudge book that I left behind at the Book Nook of the local flea market. I could've just kicked myself because at a $1 these books fly off the shelves. I visited A Woman Who Is and noted that she was reading one and Barbara so often touts them. I couldn't believe my stupidity. Would you believe that I even prayed that no one would buy it before I did?

So Saturday afternoon, we followed our transfer station visit with a trek down the road. I held my breath entering that nook, I lost heart as I couldn't find the book anywhere, but then! Then! I saw it on an end rack; I grabbed it; and clutched it to my heart.



It's titled Thorns of Truth by Elizabeth Goudge. What? What's that you say? It's not by Elizabeth Goudge? Eileen? Eileen who? Who in the world is this E. G. imposter?!

Nuts! Foiled again. For a dollar, I hope that I haven't gone too wrong.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Heaven Is...

I must tell Jesus! I must tell Jesus!
I cannot bear my burdens alone;
I must tell Jesus! I must tell Jesus!
Jesus can help me, Jesus alone.


~Elisha A.Hoffman

Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you. -I Peter 5:7

When we pray to the Lord asking for comfort in times of stress or times of loss, it is good to remember that He actually died [and rose again] and so has gone ahead of us to prepare the way. This is not true of any other counselor or grief expert. He understands death in a way that none of them can. ~Philip Yancey paraphrase

In my Father's house are many mansions: if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. -John 14:2

I've got a mansion just over the hilltop
In that bright land where we'll never grow old
And some day yonder we will never more wander
But walk on streets that are purest gold

~Ira Stamphill



"Stillwater Cottage" by Thomas Kinkade is an image that suits my imagination of Heaven. (ETA: You'll have to do your own Googling to see it...sorry about that!) See Jesus walking across the pond or feeding the swans and it would be nearly complete. Peek through the window and see the family seated at the dining room table and the fantasy fills out even more. But whatever our ideas of Heaven, they can not begin to compare with what Heaven truly is and how wonderful it will be to see the Lord face to face.

Have a blessed Sunday and a wonderful beginning to a beautiful new week!

picture source

Saturday, February 7, 2009

So Happy to Find...



Quite often when I hear about our "famous friends" being published and writing articles in magazines, etc., I am not able to find the magazine. You should have heard me as I stood at the counter checking out at Joann's Fabrics when I spied apron*ology on the rack. I squealed...out loud. Oh my! Then I did the unthinkable as the clerk looked at me curiously. I said, in my proudest voice, "That's my friend's apron on the cover!" Dawn would be mortified. I am mortified...kinda. ;>

And oh what a delicious little break I had reading it in the sun-warmed car a few minutes later. I was waiting for John to come and join me for coffee at Tim Horton's. Anyway, he arrived much too early so now I must find more time to finish reading this gem. What a chore, right?

Thank you very much for your sweet comments about my loss. I haven't seen this precious lady for several years. The last time was outside the local grocery store when she shared with me some personal and meaningful things to me. I consoled her and she consoled me and we told each other that we understood and that it was okay and that it would be all right in heaven. (One of her daughters was my labor and delivery coach when my daughter was born so you can see how close our friendships once were.) She and her husband employed my father many years ago and were a tremendous help to my family at that time. Sadly, things changed and it was not her nor her family at fault. Well, enough said about that. The point is, I know where she is today. I know that her passing released her from many years of a debilitating disease and I know that her family is rejoicing to see her safely home — even her dear husband of nearly sixty years, though his heart is breaking. I am rejoicing, too, except for that part of me that wishes that somehow things could've been different.

This woman was such a saint of God...her son-in-law, himself a pastor, accused her of "terrarium" living. She always saw the best in every situation and in every person. I wish that I had a tenth of her optimism and positive outlook.

It is not unusual for me to have vivid dreams and I dreamed of her two nights ago. In my dream, she was walking along the path near her home. She was wearing shorts and a cotton shirt in true 1965 style. There was a bounce in her step and, though she did not turn to look at John and me, she lifted her left arm and waved. I said, "Oh, John! Look! She knows we're driving by." It's good to remember her that way with the years between all gone.

Guess this might be a good time to go read my magazine...

Friday, February 6, 2009

His Eye is On the Sparrow

His Eye is on the Sparrow never comes to mind without my remembering Ethel Waters singing that great old song at Billy Graham crusades. How I loved to hear her sing! I was just a kid then, too, but I recognized the love and tenderness in that voice. The last time I tried to find a video or clip of Ethel's singing, it was not available. Recently, I found this from YouTube. Though it's not a Billy Graham clip, it's wonderful to hear this voice again singing one of my favorite hymns. In light of the loss of one of my "other mothers" in my real life this week and the losses that have even reached Blogdom, it's a sweet, sweet reminder. His eye is on the sparrow and I know He watches me...

Thursday, February 5, 2009

The Winner Is...

So much for getting away from the computer. I was on the phone and at the computer for nearly six hours yesterday. The only thing that I successfully stayed away from was this blog until last evening when I retrieved the names for the apron giveaway.

Without further drama the winner is...



Ahem, I said, NO MORE DRAMA!








Yay! It's Lovella @ What Matters Most! Lovella, I have your email addy and I will be in touch. Don't be surprised when the subject line says "It's me — Vee."

(Seems those of you who have been sending me email all this time at MyName@Verizon.net have been wrong. My real name has been vzeo----@verizon.net all along. Anyway, I'll be in touch. Talk about troubles...oy vey.)

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Sometimes Blogger is a Bugger

I spent the entire day yesterday working on my Kitchen Musings Part II. Last night at nine, I hit the publish post button and received an error message. Then *poof* it was all gone except for two lousy paragraphs. All the photos, all the links, all the remaining words. Yes, I had faithfully saved everything throughout the day as I worked on it, but apparently Blogger had not. I am so frustrated that...well, I won't go there. And it doesn't stop there. I'm one of the 260 thousand whose email account is in limbo because my stupid, incompetent provider (Fairpoint) couldn't handle taking over from Verizon. And I've been dealing with stupid and incompetent from the top levels in government to the little things like blogging. Sometimes I think God is trying to tell me something. Yes, indeed, I think He is. I'm off until further notice. Oh, I will return tomorrow to announce a winner...that I will do.

Sorry for the vent... Hope that you enjoy your day. I know that I'll enjoy mine doing anything but being anywhere near this computer!

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Kitchen Musings Again

Tuesdays seem a good day to discuss kitchens once again. This is a photo of my kitchen taken last night and not an especially good one.



It is open to the dining area and the living area. This may change how I think about the kitchen as time goes on. Right now, I'm thinking about function, function, function. Later this morning, I'll try to pop in a daylight photo of a different angle so you'll know what we're up against.

So many offered suggestions on last Friday's post about this topic. Pat suggested that I visit Picket's Place. I found a wonderful and funny post about a cabinet redo on January 24, 2009. This looked very doable. I am quite certain that my beloved would have the very same reaction that hers had except for one thing, my cabinets are already painted.

Heather Bullard was suggested by K. Ashcroft. Heather's kitchen redo appears on January 29 and is a delight.

Also, Melissa at The Inspired Room featured this post on Creative Unique Kitchens, which makes so many helpful suggestions. And I loved the Perfect Pantry post (almost as much as I love alliteration). I really want to incorporate the screen door for my pantry one day soon.

Next Tuesday, I'll delve in a little deeper. I'd love to have an I'll show you my kitchen if you'll show me yours post, but my techie abilities are no match for Mr. Linky. ;>

ETA: My this morning photo with only some of my concerns noted. I'm changing that "next Tuesday" bit to tomorrow. Tomorrow, I'll revisit kitchen concerns with a list of his concerns and a list of mine. This could get interesting...



Wishing everyone a fun day!

Monday, February 2, 2009

Nonni Day



Saturday was my first Nonni Day in quite a few weeks. We've all had colds since the boys' birthday party so we were trying to avoid one another. After this long, I start to get a little antsy so was happy to get the call from my son asking if I could watch the boys while he and his sister went up on the roof to rid the house of those treacherous icicles and built-up snow. My darling daughter-in-law was working at the library hence the need. Not to be left out, John decided that he'd like nothing better than to climb very tall houses and help out.



Good thing that I was nice and warm inside with the boys who were a bit spooked at first with the sounds of thumping upon the roof and the snow cascading down past the windows.

It's a veritable Thomas the Train Amusement Park in their home these days with Thomas himself roaring his way right through the living room and new wall decals in the boys' bedroom. I so wanted to sit inside Thomas and read, but when I tried to climb in, a little grandson zipped past and held up a hand looking for all the world like a junior traffic cop. He said, "No, Nonni. Not now. Get back."







The decals were so wonderful...nothing like the old things we used to have. My mind's been going in all directions since seeing them as I'm hoping to dress up a few things (not here and not with a Thomas theme). I'll have to see what's available, but I'm certain that I'll find that there's a lot of cool stuff going on since I last checked on decals back in the 80s. I really need to get out more often even if it's a visit to the grandsons' bedroom.

After the cleaning of the roof, etc., the hard workers came in for some hot coffee and the scones that my son had baked earlier in the morning. They were so delicious and the lightest scones I've ever eaten. While the men chatted in the kitchen, my daughter, the boys, and I hung out on the sofa where we counted and counted and counted some more.



This is a little experiment to see if I can share a video. It's of our little confused counter (who is counting the pictures on his aunt's camera) and our extremely focused reader. You'll hear the men talking in low rumbles in the background and my chuckles at the grand's speech. Well, see below as the experiment didn't work out quite the way I expected and now I'll just have two posts on this topic or work on figuring out something else... I refuse to tear my hair out over this!

Have a great Monday...

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Try It Again

God's Job; Your Job


God has a job, too. It's to protect you, to provide for all your needs, to make sure that one day runs into another and your heart keeps a steady rhythm and you have all the air you need to breathe. His shoulders are big and His arms are long. There's nothing you need that He can't provide, whether it's finances, health, a comforting word, or even a bottle of corn syrup...

We have only one job, and that's to hold His hand. That's it. Under "Duties and responsibilities of the child of God," there's just a single line written: "Hold tight." The minute we let go is the minute all the stewing and fretting begins. We start panicking, and the next thing you know, we're off trying to run our lives again. His hand is still there — open, waiting — but we don't notice because we're too busy trying to keep all the bad things at bay. We're swatting at foes, both real and imagined, and scanning the skies for approaching storms.

It's all so unnecessary. The fix is simple: walk back to Jesus and put your hand in His. Start trusting again. Rest.
~excerpt from a Whisper in Winter by Shannon Woodward

Be merciful and gracious to me, O God, be merciful and gracious to me, for my soul takes refuge and finds shelter and confidence in You; yes, in the shadow of Your wings will I take refuge and be confident until calamities and destructive storms are passed.

I will cry to God Most High, Who performs on my behalf and rewards me [Who brings to pass His purposes for me and surely completes them]!

He will send from heaven and save me from the slanders and reproaches of him who would trample me down or swallow me up, and He will put him to shame. Selah [pause, and calmly think of that]! God will send forth His mercy and loving-kindness and His truth and faithfulness.
Psalm 57:1–3 Amplified

Praying rest for your hearts, minds, bodies, and spirits today...

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Bloglifts, Facelifts, Kitchen Lifts, etc.

Thank you so much for all the wonderful suggestions about kitchen redos. I'm going to do a post sometime next week gathering all this information for my benefit. Does everyone use her blog as a clearinghouse of ideas? I find that aspect of blogging so helpful, though I notice that Miss Sandy is one prepared gal when she goes shopping...check yesterday's post right *here.*

As you can see, I've been at it again. This began all over when I visited Linds and saw her bloglift. I immediately noticed how calm the background was and how easy the page loaded, etc.

The wonderful thing about Cutest Blogs on the Block is that all the information for doing one's own blog is there. I followed directions to the letter and I'm pleased that things have calmed down considerably here. The former background from Cutest Blogs was a bit busy with the green and yellow. The green was a nod in John's direction as that is his favorite color. I think he was a little indignant when I reminded him that my color is yellow. He said that green was the color of new life. I asked him what the color of yellow was and he told me "bananas!"

In order to use a background of one's own creating, you must have a Photobucket account. (Perhaps other photo hosting sites also work.) I've had such an account for years, but was not using it for anything related to my blog. Imagine my surprise when I discovered all the incredible new features there. You'll definitely want to check it out. If you've ever wanted to do your own facelift...just saying! You'll find everything you need via the EDIT button once there.

I'm off on Nonni duty today... Reporting from the Haven snuggled down in the snow....Enjoy your Saturday!

Friday, January 30, 2009

Blue

(Imagine a really lovely blue kitchen here with an apron sink. Sorry about that!)

Is it possible that I've been hanging out at Linda's Restyled Home too much? She has a thing for beautiful shades of blue and I think that I've caught it.

The thing is that I've spent years trying to avoid blue. The first home that I owned had a hideous blue kitchen...depressing and unattractive. The seeds of intense blue dislike were sown. My current office has blue wallpaper...depressing and unattractive. The roots go deep.

Now I find myself discussing the kitchen cabinets with "the carpenter" deciding what we can do as a redo without a major remodel. I watch him as he ponders the possibilites. I question him. He says he's "just thinking." Though I'm ready to move beyond that stage to the doing, I'll slow down for him because he always has good thoughts and when he's ready, he'll be ready.

If you were to paint your kitchen cabinets, what color would you choose? What type of hardware would you select? What countertop material would you like? If you couldn't have what you really wanted, what might you take as a less-expensive alternative? One last thing...have you seen a kitchen redo in Blogdom lately that you think I'd enjoy seeing? Thanks for your help!

Have a great Friday...

Thursday, January 29, 2009

An Eclectic Mix of Fluff and Stuff

Today is my 475th post. Good heavens! What have I possibly found to talk about in all those posts?! This blog originally had the subtitle "an eclectic mix of fluff and stuff." Guess this represents a whole lot of fluff.

When the 400 number came up right in the middle of holiday preparations and busyness, I decided that I would allow it to pass by without comment. Now that I have some extra time on my hands, I would love to have another apron giveaway celebrating both my 400th and 500th posts. So, if you'd like to leave a comment on this post and only this post, please do. This is limited to those who have a blog, but not limited to location so feel free to leave a comment no matter that you live in East IshBish. Just one request, do not comment on your blogs or link back to me. This is only for the gal (or guy) who wanders in and finds it on her own! I'm keeping comments open for one week. When you see comments closed, all those who've commented (once is enough) will be entered. The winner will be allowed to select her own color preferences so once the winner is announced, I'll be in touch for all the particulars plus a bit of snooping on your blog.

Thanks!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Snow Day

Snowstorm...

* Snowstorm bringing a foot of new snow, as opposed to old snow, I presume. (This weather description always makes me laugh.)

* Snowstorm bringing a secluded day...

* Snowstorm bringing stillness and calm...

* Snowstorm bringing work and lots of it...

* Snowstorm bringing a world of white...

* Snowstorm bringing hidden images in trees...





* Snowstorm bringing the noisy plow...

* Snowstorm bringing fresh, crisp air...

* Snowstorm bringing peanut butter toast and hot cocoa... (John tossed that one in here; I had absolutely nothing to do with it.)

Thanks for the compliments on the header. I'm sure that a lot of my blogging friends are cringing because they are experts and they can see that I'm just a pretender, but a gal's gotta start somewhere. As you can see from the hidden images in trees above, I've become a bit woods queer. Apparently, I have too, too, too much time on my hands.

Hopefully, I'll get some organizing accomplished today or some sewing or something besides giving John new glasses on Photoshop. Ha!

Enjoy your Wednesday...

Monday, January 26, 2009

Vanity, Thy Name Is...

Either one or both of the two Yahoos that live at the Haven that's who...

This all began when I asked my beloved to take a picture of my new haircut so that I could share. Because that's just what I'm all about — sharing.

This meant a bit of a camera lesson for him as we repeated an earlier lesson from way long time ago. So I demonstrated by taking a photo of him seated in the wicker chair where he is wont to sit of an evening watching me putter about at the computer. It's kind of dark here in the evening, but here it is...



Nice picture...thing is, I showed him all about my amazing skills as a plastic surgeon via my Photoshop program. So he wound up looking like this...



He rather likes it.

Ah, now it's my turn...



Oh, ackkk! Where's that knife?!



There! Nothing that some serious cropping and photoshopping can't fix. Wait, do I look puffy to you?

I should have stopped with The Carpenter's first photos of me...





Blurry, but wonderfully so. ;>

Have a great Monday!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

A Promise

(Imagine a rocky mountaintop.)

I will go before you and will level the mountains... Isaiah 45:2 a

A promise for whatever mountain you may be facing today — financial, family issues, health concerns, spiritual...

Friday, January 23, 2009

Wherein this Blogger Finally Comes Through

It dawns on me that I don't often keep my promises on this blog. I say that I will get back to you on this or that and I don't. There are two such promises that come to mind, one in recent days and one from over a year ago. Allow me to set this right, okay?

Here's the first...



This was my attempt to create a nine-inch "beachball" for my grandsons with some leftover scraps from those dozen or so aprons I made as Christmas gifts. Neither of my grands has ever paid any attention to this ball. It sits untouched and has now become an experiment to see how long it will take. At this rate, they'll be 21 and 20 before they notice. I found the directions right here at The Purl Bee. I'll let you know when they notice...yeah, right, sure I will! ;>

And this is the one from away back in October of 2007...



At that time, I had purchased a Butter Bell for my sister's birthday (a green one, I think) and I said that I'd let you know what I thought of the butter keeping system having first seen these featured on the Martha Stewart program. Probably the most pertinent thing that I can tell you is that I have since purchased an additional four. The white one above is my own and I love it because butter must be fresh and when one is dieting and doesn't get more than a smidge, a stick of butter hangs around for a long time. A butter bell keeps the butter fresh (soft, too) for all that span — even in summer!



You can read more about Butter Bells right *here.* (I see that they are having some great savings on Christmas items.) Be sure to check out some of their recipes, too. Now why didn't I purchase that beautiful yellow one? Perhaps I need another... (photo used by permission)

There, I feel better about keeping my promises already...thanks!

(My cold is better, too. I swear by that Airborne and hydrogen peroxide in the ears. Thank you so much for all your good wishes.)

Create a great day!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

My Cold Arsenal



Yup, the dreaded common cold strikes again. Ugh. What am I doing with the hydrogen peroxide? *Pouring it in my ears.*

See you on the other side of the scheduled outage...

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Blogkeeping

Have you seen me experimenting with backgrounds over the past few days? I think that I've settled on this one obviously from The Cutest Blog on the Block. They have hundreds of background designs and it's very easy to add one without stressing over codes, etc. Since I'm late to the party, you probably already know all that I'm sharing today.

Aunt Amelia told me about other wonderful backgrounds available at The Background Fairy. Using their backgrounds will also place a little advertising in the top left corner, but that's a small price for a free background. Aunt Amelia says that she changes her background all the time. I can see why it's tempting.

Some time ago, Dawn gave a tutorial on how to change backgrounds on your own (without having any advertising) right *here.* She included some very attractive backgrounds to use as well.

Also, I've been playing with banners at Big Huge Labs Blog Header program where one can easily upload a picture and it will create a header automatically. That was a bit of fun and now when you see it, you'll know where I did it. This is one that I made there without all the finishing touches. I added the title with my own Photoshop program. (I don't like the color match and will be redoing it.)


It's been great fun playing with blogkeeping; now I'm moving on to higher ground...housekeeping. So why am I feeling sad about that?
Enjoy your Wednesday!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

The Next Four Years

May 5, 2016

As more folks find this place, I thought it would be interesting to share a post from 2010 that illustrates my evolution from being on the front page to now when I keep things on a back page. I do this so no one feels compelled to comment. (Comments are not allowed here.) We have been through (and still are in) a period of time when many are quite certain that punishment has been doled out to those who speak up in a political way.

I am, by nature, a political gal. I enjoy the discussion and I like to keep up with what goes on. If we visited in person, you'd know that quite quickly. So"Let's Get Political" is my way of not being too forceful on the average reader. For some crazy reason, I have attracted a lot of liberal leaning readers whom I love, but with whom I do not agree. Consider this page my attempt to be true to who I am.

May 4, 2016

My! I have been showing great restraint. ☺
*A Thoughtful Discussion between Huckabee and Hannity* on the state of affairs after Indiana. My sentiments nearly exactly expressed clearly in nine brief minutes.



May 3, 2015

On Baltimore

November 1, 2014

Blog: Kaci Hickox: Ebola's Sandra Fluke


May 9, 2014

Tom Cotton Discusses Benghazi



October 17, 2013

Letter to National Park Service from Congressman Trey Gowdy of South Carolina

August 16, 2013

More Mayberry and Less Fallujah video


May 15, 2013

Really? Trespassers at Boston's Water Supply? Seven? From Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, and Singapore? After midnight?  What could possibly go wrong?!

May 11, 2013

The Benghazi Lie by Mark Steyn



March 18, 2013

Fascinating Classroom Experiment


February 28, 2013

Thank you, Mr. Woodward: Woodward is Warned

***


November 10, 2012

We are apt to shut our eyes against a painful truth... For my part, I am willing to know the whole truth; to know the worst; and to provide for it.~Patrick Henry

So you have found IT again. Yes, this is the repository for my thoughts through the coming four years: 2013–2017. My thoughts will be placed here in this one post with a date. The ticker of the national debt will continue to fire off at the bottom. Newer posts will be at the top. If you want to comment about anything you see here, feel free to email me as comments here are closed.

Often, one can settle down after an election when realizing that, while things may not be to one's liking, everything will level out. Not this time. This time there has been a decided shift and if you are a reader of persons, you know this well. You, too, can hear and see it in "the tone." Be wary, pay close attention, and stay well.



National Debt Ticker

Monday, January 19, 2009

I Have a Dream

A decade ago, I was teaching at a small community college. One of the courses I taught was the dreaded public speaking course. I believe that it is still true that the number one fear of Americans today is having to speak before an audience. This means that death would be preferable. ;>

A few weeks into the course, I would ask my students to select a favorite speech and simply read it to the class. Inevitably, a student would select Martin Luther King's "I Have a Dream" speech first delivered in August of 1963 at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, DC. The power of words! One can not read or hear this speech, even today, and not feel a tingle go up the spine.

Even though we've come a long way since then, we have yet further to go. Tomorrow, President-elect Obama will become our 44th President. It will be a day to remember. I think that Martin Luther King, Jr. would be pleased.

I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.

Five score years ago, a great American, in whose symbolic shadow we stand today, signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beacon light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity.

But one hundred years later, the Negro still is not free. One hundred years later, the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination. One hundred years later, the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity. One hundred years later, the Negro is still languished in the corners of American society and finds himself an exile in his own land. And so we've come here today to dramatize a shameful condition.

In a sense we've come to our nation's capital to cash a check. When the architects of our republic wrote the magnificent words of the Constitution and the Declaration of Independence, they were signing a promissory note to which every American was to fall heir. This note was a promise that all men, yes, black men as well as white men, would be guaranteed the "unalienable Rights" of "Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness." It is obvious today that America has defaulted on this promissory note, insofar as her citizens of color are concerned. Instead of honoring this sacred obligation, America has given the Negro people a bad check, a check which has come back marked "insufficient funds."

But we refuse to believe that the bank of justice is bankrupt. We refuse to believe that there are insufficient funds in the great vaults of opportunity of this nation. And so, we've come to cash this check, a check that will give us upon demand the riches of freedom and the security of justice.

We have also come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of Now. This is no time to engage in the luxury of cooling off or to take the tranquilizing drug of gradualism. Now is the time to make real the promises of democracy. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to lift our nation from the quicksands of racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice a reality for all of God's children.

It would be fatal for the nation to overlook the urgency of the moment. This sweltering summer of the Negro's legitimate discontent will not pass until there is an invigorating autumn of freedom and equality. Nineteen sixty-three is not an end, but a beginning. And those who hope that the Negro needed to blow off steam and will now be content will have a rude awakening if the nation returns to business as usual. And there will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted his citizenship rights. The whirlwinds of revolt will continue to shake the foundations of our nation until the bright day of justice emerges.

But there is something that I must say to my people, who stand on the warm threshold which leads into the palace of justice: In the process of gaining our rightful place, we must not be guilty of wrongful deeds. Let us not seek to satisfy our thirst for freedom by drinking from the cup of bitterness and hatred. We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again, we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.

The marvelous new militancy which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers, as evidenced by their presence here today, have come to realize that their destiny is tied up with our destiny. And they have come to realize that their freedom is inextricably bound to our freedom.

We cannot walk alone.

And as we walk, we must make the pledge that we shall always march ahead.

We cannot turn back.

There are those who are asking the devotees of civil rights, "When will you be satisfied?" We can never be satisfied as long as the Negro is the victim of the unspeakable horrors of police brutality. We can never be satisfied as long as our bodies, heavy with the fatigue of travel, cannot gain lodging in the motels of the highways and the hotels of the cities. We cannot be satisfied as long as the negro's basic mobility is from a smaller ghetto to a larger one. We can never be satisfied as long as our children are stripped of their self-hood and robbed of their dignity by signs stating: "For Whites Only." We cannot be satisfied as long as a Negro in Mississippi cannot vote and a Negro in New York believes he has nothing for which to vote. No, no, we are not satisfied, and we will not be satisfied until "justice rolls down like waters, and righteousness like a mighty stream."

I am not unmindful that some of you have come here out of great trials and tribulations. Some of you have come fresh from narrow jail cells. And some of you have come from areas where your quest -- quest for freedom left you battered by the storms of persecution and staggered by the winds of police brutality. You have been the veterans of creative suffering. Continue to work with the faith that unearned suffering is redemptive. Go back to Mississippi, go back to Alabama, go back to South Carolina, go back to Georgia, go back to Louisiana, go back to the slums and ghettos of our northern cities, knowing that somehow this situation can and will be changed.

Let us not wallow in the valley of despair, I say to you today, my friends.

And so even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow, I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.

I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: "We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal."

I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia, the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit down together at the table of brotherhood.

I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.

I have a dream that my four little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day, down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its governor having his lips dripping with the words of "interposition" and "nullification" -- one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.

I have a dream today!

I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, and every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places will be made plain, and the crooked places will be made straight; "and the glory of the Lord shall be revealed and all flesh shall see it together."

This is our hope, and this is the faith that I go back to the South with.

With this faith, we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith, we will be able to transform the jangling discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith, we will be able to work together, to pray together, to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom together, knowing that we will be free one day.

And this will be the day -- this will be the day when all of God's children will be able to sing with new meaning:

My country 'tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing.

Land where my fathers died, land of the Pilgrim's pride,

From every mountainside, let freedom ring!

And if America is to be a great nation, this must become true.

And so let freedom ring from the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire.

Let freedom ring from the mighty mountains of New York.

Let freedom ring from the heightening Alleghenies of Pennsylvania.

Let freedom ring from the snow-capped Rockies of Colorado.

Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California.

But not only that:

Let freedom ring from Stone Mountain of Georgia.

Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain of Tennessee.

Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill of Mississippi.

From every mountainside, let freedom ring.

And when this happens, when we allow freedom ring, when we let it ring from every village and every hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God's children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual:

Free at last! Free at last!

Thank God Almighty, we are free at last!

source

Sunday, January 18, 2009

The Perfect Gift

To one there is given through the Spirit the message of wisdom, to another the message of knowledge by means of the same Spirit, to another faith by the same Spirit, to another gifts of healing by that one Spirit, to another miraculous powers, to another prophecy, to another distinguishing between spirits, to another speaking in different kinds of tongues and to still another the interpretation of tongues. All these are the work of one and the same Spirit, and he gives them to each one, just as he determines. – 1 Corinthians 12:8-11

My grandsons celebrate a birthday together just a few weeks after Christmas. This has been a challenge for all three years of my search for the "perfect" gift so soon on Christmas's heels. Our family will celebrate their birthday party today. They are three and two. I am eager to watch them open their gifts and to enjoy some fellowship over cake and ice cream. (You should see how my eyes have brightened at the thought.)

What does one give to grandsons who have everything? Truly, these children are so blessed to be in a family (on both sides) who believe them to be the most brilliant, handsome, funny, charming children ever born...well, since last a child was in the family (quite some time ago on both sides hence the outpouring).

This is what I purchased among other things...





Yes, a train shaped muffin tin with each muffin a different car on the train. The gift that will keep on giving, I hope. And a gift that is unique. If anyone else thought of a train shaped muffin tin... grrrr...

You know, no one loves us more than our Heavenly Father. I imagine Him wanting so much to see us open His gifts and to use them. I have spent a lot of time thinking about what my gifts from Him are; I still don't know them all. But I'm counting on Him to fill me in just because I've asked. I can trust Him that, whatever it is, it will be perfect for me. You can trust Him just the same way. Of course, the greatest gift is Himself.

Enjoy your Sunday!