Sunday, January 31, 2010

What Does It Say?

We once had a Pastor who issued
us a challenge....

To read the Bible and accept the
message for its face value.

He wanted us to clear our minds
of our preconceptions of years
gone by and to really just read
the words and their message.

This seems so simple and obvious.
However, we found that over the
years we had been leaning less and
less on the Word of God and more
and more on people's interpretation
of it.

I especially remember one week this
pastor preached a sermon that was
confusing to us. We invited him over
to explain it to us.

What I remember most about that evening
were the scriptures he had us read.
He did not make any extravagant arguments.
He simply led us on a journey through the
Word of God. Reminding us to ask,
"What does it say?" not "What do I think
that means?"

Naturally there are thing that appear
to contradict each other as we become
very familiar with His Word. However,
as we know that the Holy Spirit is the
author this cannot be the case.

However, this is how we come to have
so many different denominations.
Each reading the text and making
their own interpretations or camping
on this point or that.

Scripture must be tested by other Scripture.
If we are honest we will see that these
things are not contradictory but rather
in context of the day or some other perfectly
rational explanation.

There are some that remain a mystery
to me, but I know that in Heaven I will
have a "duh" moment. I know this because
in I Corinthians 13:11-13 we are reminded
of this:

When I was a child, I spake as a child, I understood as a child, I thought as a child: but when I became a man, I put away childish things.

For now we see through a glass, darkly; but then face to face: now I know in part; but then shall I know even as also I am known.

And now abideth faith, hope, charity, these three; but the greatest of these is charity.

It is so vital to absorb
the Word on a very regular basis.
This way when something troubles us we have a
foundation to look to.

I do not do as well as I should in the daily
devotional area. But, it is definitely
an area worthy of improvement.

Reading other people's books about the Bible
can be good, or it can be dangerous. However,
as long as we are very familiar with the Bible
itself we will be able to recognize error and
hopefully will spare ourselves some time of

Have a Blessed Lord's Day!

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Music Practice was just canceled,
it snowed unexpectedly today and
we weren't sure enough about the
roads to risk Pastor Mike's twenty
minute drive...

So...looks like tea and a relaxing
evening for me.

Warren and the boys are watching a
movie downstairs, Chelsea is preparing
to make cookies and muffins for our
Fellowship meal tomorrow.

I have been on my feet all day,
first making candles and then
truly awesome stromboli
for dinner.

Yes, I am bragging on my
Stromboli. Just enough whole
wheat flour in the dough to make
it interesting while still
keeping it light and delicious.

For Christmas, Georgia gave me
that book about making bread
in five minutes a day.
So I have been reading it and
learning all kinds of interesting
tips about bread chemistry.

Not that hard, really.
Just a few basics about proteins
and how they react to the yeast.

By the way...this teapot is not mine.
It is on display at Winterthur.
A delightful museum and grounds
in Delaware.

Don't you just love the simple,
yet elegant design?

I do!


Friday, January 29, 2010

Just Chatting...

Thank you for being so
welcoming to Bandit yesterday.
I think it has gone to her head.

Mrs. Rabe you totally cracked me
up with those three simple words...
"Mommy and Daddy?"
I laughed out loud.

I find myself very excited these
days. The candle company is taking
off. Yesterday alone, I was approached
about four new Fundraiser opportunities.

I think that soon I will have to come
up with an alternative site to work.
My kitchen is being outgrown.

Having a business that is seasonal
is a nice thing, as well. I look
forward to the days of Summer when
all of my wax and jars are put away.

The kids and I are reading Dr. Ben
Carson's book, Think Big.

Actually we had started it back before
Christmas and then I forgot about it
after the break. Chelsea asked if we
could get back to it. This book has
a great message.

Find your God given talents, use them
to the best of your ability, with HIS

So many of us choose our life's path
to please someone else or because of
the presumed paycheck that will come
rather than doing what we love and
becoming the best at that.

I remember being in High School and
having my parents discuss my future
with me. They had it all laid out.
I would go to a Christian College in
Florida and study to be a secretary.

That could not have been farther from
what I would have wanted to do.
I expressed this to them and they were
open to my feelings. I did not go to
school in Florida. I found myself working
as a Nanny to two beautiful children before
taking a semester at PSU and then on to become
a dental assistant.

I do remember one interview, however, when
the Doctor asked me where I saw myself in five
years when I answered, "I would love to
be married with children". I didn't get
that job. But, you know, that was o.k.

That was the mission God had called me to.
It has been the main focus of my life
for the past 19 years.

Soon, our guys will be all grown and it is
our turn to encourage them toward the future.

Dr. Carson's book is a perfect
launching tool to get them
thinking about their hopes and dreams.
It has spurred thoughtful conversation for
the boys about why they are choosing the things
they choose. Is Mikey doing landscaping because
he loves it or because he thinks it is what is
expected of him? It seems at this point that
he is pursuing this because he truly enjoys it.
I see his natural giftings at it.

Jonathan is working up the courage to pursue
a love of his own. Psychology. He read a
book on personalities a few years ago when I
told him to choose any book from our bookcase.
It grabbed his attention. The challenge for
Jonathan is his dyslexia and math disabilities.
However, I truly feel that he is totally able
and capable to do this if he wants it badly
enough. I am willing to read him his texts
all the way through...if that were necessary.

I know there is technology available to
read text. Jonathan's needs can be accommodated.
It just takes time, research and persistence.
But we are used to that!

He is also a great writer and artist.
The world is open to him.

Now to get him to believe that.

Your prayers would be appreciated.

Jonathan has come a lot farther
than he knows.
Just recently a friend commented
on his courage for reading out loud
at church. Since his eyes jump around
the page he loses his place often.
Reading is HARD work for him but he
doesn't let it stop him. For this
I am very pleased...and even proud.

It is also a blessing to worship with
people who know him well enough to
appreciate the risk he takes each
time he steps out like this.

Back from this rabbit trail,
following God's call on our life.
It is the perfect way to make a living.
It is the most rewarding way to live.

And now, back to those candles.
I cannot explain why I enjoy them
so much. It is just so rewarding to
use them to help Non-Profits reach their
goals and dreams. It is good.
Sometimes God grants us our wishes in
ways we would never even think of.

That's what has happened here....
I don't expect to get rich from this
but I can help do silly little things
like adopt a crazy little puppy like


Thursday, January 28, 2010

Good Morning From Bandit

Good Morning,

Mom asked me to stop by
and keep you entertained today
because this is her very busy
day. So, I thought I would
tell you some of the things
I have learned since I came
to live here.

Here they are, the Top Ten:

10. The white cat is really
nice if you take the time to
get to know him. Usually a
nip on his tail generates
opportunity for interaction.

9. Chelsea gets really angry
when I leave presents on her

8. Chloe is a good big sister
who shares my toys well.

7. Sometimes Mommy looks really
funny when she takes me outside
at 6:30 in the morning.

6. Jonathan might be tall, but
he knows how to walk me and play
with me.

5. Mikey is my best playmate.
He has a lot of energy just like

4. The Daddy adores me and I know
how to make him smile.

3. I am learning to sleep in my bed
right beside Mommy's side of the bed.
I am quiet all night and love to greet
Mommy bright and early with a wagging

2. I don't mind spending time in my big
crate in the living room if Mommy is in
the room too. But I raise a real ruckus
if she goes anywhere else. So far this is
working for me. They don't seem to like the
big noise I know how to make.

1. After I make a present outside, Mommy
gets all excited and I get a big hug!

So, there you have it. Some of the many
things I have learned in the past few

Mommy and Daddy say they are very proud of
me and that they love me a LOT!

Chloe watches out for me but does like to
get me into trouble too. Take the other
day for example. She teased me into running
into the bushes. I was on a leash, she wasn't.
I got stuck and she ran away. Not funny, I say.
I don't think Mommy thought it was too funny
either by all of the grunts, groans and not
so happy words she was muttering as she crawled
under the bush with me. Just saying...
Chloe might bear some watching.

Hope your day is full of treats and
that you always make it to your
potty spot.



Wednesday, January 27, 2010

A Favorite Necklace

This necklace lives in
a special box. A box that
was given to me by a friend
of the family when his mother
passed away.

Jane had Alzheimer's. In her
early years she was a very capable
RN who had lived in Panama
before coming back to live in
York, Pa as a neighbor and
part of the family to Warren's
Grandma Charlotte. Her son,
Jim, and Warren's Mom, Georgia,
were raised almost like siblings.

The families did many things together.

I first met Jim and Jane up at Potter
County at the cabin. I liked them both

It was so sad when Jane began showing
signs of Alzheimer's. She would turn
burners on and walk away or walk to
the Fairground in her Sunday best at
an odd time...planning to attend a

In the later stages, Jane, became violent.
Trust me when I tell you that it was the
disease. This was not anything like the
Jane we had known for years.

It became impossible for Jim to get
her out to a hairdresser. Jane had always
been an immaculate dresser and her hair was
always coiffed just so.
It was hard for Jim to accept that she couldn't
be allowed to look as she had.

He asked if I would mind
coming in and
cutting her hair.
I did not mind
one little bit.

It took three of us.
Two to gently restrain Jane, as she would
attempt to pinch or bite,
and I would wash and cut her hair.

It was never as it would have been
had a professional done it.
Even if I had been a professional there
was always the fact that I was working
around Georgia's hands while she held
Jane's head to keep us safe.
But I know that Jane had to be more
comfortable with her hair washed and
manageable. So we did this on a
fairly regular basis.
Hearts breaking
at the decline of
our dear friend.

After Jane was released from the
disease to her eternal resting place
Jim gave me a box containing
some of Jane's jewelry.

Now this box also contains
jewelry that once belonged to
Grandma Charlotte.

These ladies,
so intertwined in life,
now their jewelry mixed
as it waits to be worn.

I don't wear much jewelry.
I frankly just don't think
to put it on, but I do pull
these pieces out and look
at them.

Occasionally I will
wear a necklace
from this

I did on Sunday
and I was thinking
of these special
friends as I did so.

Alzheimer's is a horrible
disease. It is a thief.
But, there is so much we can
do to make its victims more
comfortable and to assist their
families. It is exhausting to
be a full time caregiver to someone
in the advanced stages.

If you know someone in this situation
I do hope you'll feel free to offer
help. You just never know how some
of your time to sit and visit while
that person gets a small break...

They'll be able to tell you what
would be helpful if you are sincere.

Hope you are having a wonderful
and rewarding day.

I am making candles to help raise
money for Haiti. A local church has
asked to sell them for this purpose.
I'm putting a little extra love in
each one...


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

A Funeral Today

Today Warren and I have the
honor of attending a Memorial
Service for a man we respect
so very much.

This man was the Elder for our
church until he was 90 years of

Everyone in our fellowship loved

In the last few years he has stayed
closer to his retirement home and
we have not seen much of him. we will honor Leonard's long
life with his children, grandchildren
and great-grandchildren.

We will remember his wisdom,
his love for the Lord and
his sweet gentle spirit.

We will not be able to avoid
thinking of his dear Margie
who got to Heaven a few years
ago. She was such a gentle southern
lady. So often someone in our church
will quote Margie or say, "What would
Margie say about that?".

It would be o.k. with me if people
remembered Warren and I so fondly
at the end of our earthly life.

This couple was integral to who our
church was during the years they
were with us.

I can imagine that there was
much rejoicing in Heaven when
Leonard arrived.

Rejoice with us in the celebration
of the life of a Saint!


Monday, January 25, 2010

Vacation Mosaic....Memories

I'm linking up with Mary's
Mosaic Monday.
Oh, and it is Mary's birthday Post.
Hope you'll leave her some well wishes.

In the last couple of weeks the
conversation frequently
turns to last year's mega vacation
to Florida. For us, this was big.
The kids want to do it again.

I would love to make this happen for
them...maybe in the Fall.

So...thinking about this I revisited
our many photos from our fun times
in the warm sunshine....

So...until then we will be
"saving our pennies".

Hope your day includes making
happy memories.


Sunday, January 24, 2010

Christian Forgiveness

The skit I am writing for our
homeschool co-op has forgiveness
as its primary message.

This has me thinking.

How do we forgive?

Why do we forgive?

Who wins when we forgive?

First of all, I think that Christians have the best understanding of forgiveness that can be had. I mean once a person understands that they cannot possibly live up to the expectations of a perfect God and accept the gift of salvation offered through the death of Jesus, it kind of brings a new light on the subject.

God is love.
We hear this all of the time.
It is true.

God is also just.

Romans 6:23
For the wages of sin is death,
but the gift of God is
eternal life
in Christ Jesus our Lord.

Sin is not acceptable in His sight.
Not even an bad thought now and then...

I John 3:15
Anyone who hates his brother
is a murderer,
and you know that
no murderer has eternal
life in him.

But who can live up to that???

Romans 3:10-12
There is no one righteous, not even one;
there is no one who understands,
no one who seeks God.
All have turned away,
they have together become worthless;
there is no one who does good,
not even one."

No one.

Hence the need of a paid penalty.
The penalty had to be death.
It was.
Jesus, God's Son, gave Himself
for those who would receive the
gift of Eternal opposed
to an Eternity Absent from God.

Romans 3:21-26
But now a righteousness from God, apart from law, has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify. This righteousness from God comes through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference, for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, and are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus. God presented him as a sacrifice of atonement, through faith in his blood. He did this to demonstrate his justice, because in his forbearance he had left the sins committed beforehand unpunished— he did it to demonstrate his justice at the present time, so as to be just and the one who justifies those who have faith in Jesus.

Having received this forgiveness
in the most life changing and
serious way, how can we not forgive
those around us who hurt us,
intentionally or not.

After all, we are told to pray in the
Lord's Prayer...
"Forgive us our debts,
as we also have forgiven our debtors.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from the evil one.
For if you forgive men when
they sin against you,
your heavenly Father will
also forgive you.
But if you do not forgive
men their sins,
your Father will not
forgive your sins."

So, back to the original questions:

How do we forgive?

We forgive by following
God's example. Once we
have accepted Christ's gift
all that has gone before is
forgiven and forgotten.
As if it had never been.

My human brain does love
to hold on to offenses.
Each time a memory of a
time I was "wronged" comes
to mind,
I may have to forgive again.
Forgiveness is a choice...
not a feeling.

An action verb, if you will.

Why do we forgive?

We forgive so that we
can be forgiven. We also
forgive so that we can be
free...from hate, sadness
and broken relationships.

This is vital in our family
relationships. To leave
something unforgiven is to
create a split in the relationship
that will be very hard to repair
later. The sooner we choose
to forgive the less fallout
we have to deal with.

Who wins when we forgive?

Especially the forgiver.
Holding onto a grudge uses
so much energy. It can make
one tired and ugly.

There was no greater testimony
to come out of the sad event
called the "Amish Schoolhouse
Shooting" just miles from my
home than the forgiveness demonstrated
by the families whose lives were
impacted forever.

Amish men traveled to the Middle
East to speak with men in Countries
there because there was so much interest
in how they could possibly honestly
forgive. They were asked to come
and explain it.

The media was stunned
at the true forgiveness
they observed.

Stories from courtrooms
become news when the victim
or their family chooses forgiveness
over vengeance.

Why does this become news?

Because it is rare.

But what a powerful impact is made
when the family of a drunk driver and
that driver who made a terrible choice
team up to speak in classrooms.

Forgiveness is way underrated.

Christians forgive, because we understand
what we have been forgiven.

We win, because we have been forgiven
and we win when we forgive those who
hurt us.

It's not always easy...
but it is soooo worth it!

If you are holding onto hurts
today, I would encourage you
to let go. Find the joy that
is waiting for you in the gift
of forgiveness.

Your chest will feel lighter
and your smile will become

An instant

I am turning off the comments.

After a post such as this I
always cringe when pressing

I am not perfect!
I have not totally mastered
this. Hopefully each
time I remember more quickly
that there is joy and freedom in

Thanks for allowing me to
share this with you.


Saturday, January 23, 2010

Good Morning!

I'm off to breakfast with all
available family members...

The last two Saturdays I have
made Belgian waffles in my
new waffle maker. Yesterday
I made some with cranberries in
them. Awesome!!!
Next time I will have cranberries
and add some orange zest.
That will be perfection,
I think...

Today we will go to a local
Breakfast Smorgasbord before
dropping at least one kid off
to Creekside Cottage for a
day of hard work. They are
doing some tree work today.

Jonathan loves working with
Mr. Rabe. He is very good
about explaining what needs
to be done and is just a very
nice man to be around.

He makes Jonathan comfortable.
Thanks Mr. Rabe!

Having the Rabe children to talk
to and work with doesn't hurt
either. Whoever said homeschoolers
aren't socialized certainly never
met my kids and their friends.

Good Grief!

I am working on laundry and cleaning
today, while writing a skit for our
end of the year performance.

We will have our Music practice
for tomorrow at some point later
today...and I must come up with
a bulletin cover.

So, it will be our usually busy

Love it!

Takes me back to my childhood
when we would do our housework
on Saturday morning while listening
to the Kid's programming on
the local Christian Radio Station.

That made dusting tolerable.
I can still smell the Pledge
even though I don't use it these
days. Microfiber, people, that is
the ticket. Love those things!
Thanks for this tip, Ronda!

Well, I know you are using valuable
time to read this, so go on now,
and get busy.
I'll see you here tomorrow.

Assumptive, aren't I?

Nope! Just trying to be funny.
Not quite the same without the
big smile that you can't see.

That is what is missing here,
visual....for that you should
be thankful!

Anyway, go on and have
a wonderful day.


Friday, January 22, 2010

Did You See...

...the story about military gun scopes that have Scripture references on them?

Did you know that the manufacturer has agreed to stop putting them on?

Did you also know that they are making retro/patch kits to "fix" the many
offensive scopes already in the field?

Boy does this make me scratch my head...
What are they afraid of?

One would have to have access to a Bible or
computer to figure out what those even stand
for...that would mean one would have to look
it up...that makes it an act of intention.

One would have to want to know....

A willing action.

Why would they be worried?
Unless they are concerned that
someone might come to the Lord...

What happened to "In GOD we trust"?

Separation of Church and State is so
misunderstood. Not unintentionally
I sometimes think!

Boy does this tell me how far
down the wrong road we have come!

You can read about it here...
Note what Gen. Petraeus had to say.


Keep going for a feel-good, happy
post about our dogs....
Something for most here today! lol


It has happened....
Chloe and Bandit are
the best of friends.

Oh my goodness do they
ever play together!

Warren took these picture
of the two resting side
by side after a long evening
of hard wrestling.

Makes me smile with
a happiness from the
inside. My little
Chloe is sad no more!!!

Hope you are smiling
from the inside about
something today.

It feels so good.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Orchids are Coming!

From January 23 until sometime
in March the folks at Longwood
Gardens will be featuring Orchids.

When we were there on Tuesday
there were workers and volunteers
scurrying everywhere to remove
plants and replace them with
orchids and other spring flowers.

One group of men was in the
process of building a huge
perfume bottle...

When it is completed this will hold
one hundred and forty orchids.

We love watching the transformation happen.
Mikey bumped into at least one person who
knew him in the Conservatory and then we sought
out one of his Supervisors.

We had a very lovely time.
Thanks for your comments on the
kids photos.

We continue to take pictures
and one of them will be suitable
for the boys' senior pics.

I am sure that these pointsettia
will soon be on their way out.
Glad I caught them before that
happened. We totally missed
Longwood at sad.

I do hope your day is a great one!
We have our homeschool co-op
and I will be hosting
our weekly family dinner here so it will
be a busy one.

If that sounds strange,
once a week we eat together
with our mothers and Pastor Mike.
This is a weekly habit that we have no
desire to stop.

I realize that it could have
sounded like we have dinner
together as our family of five
once a week. No, that's not it.
We do that more

Anyway, for tonight,
I think we will have stuffed
pork chops, pasta,
with my homemade Alfredo sauce,
broccoli (Mom) and Peas.

Chelsea will likely whip up
a dessert for all of us.
She is sooo good at that!

Sounds good to me.

Now to get to work
stuffing those chops.


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Kids at Longwood Gardens

Wasn't it just yesterday
they were eating dry Cheerios out
of a yellow plastic container
to keep them quiet in church?

All of those hours working to
learn to read, spell, write...

Graduation is coming
in May!

Little sister Chelsea's life will change too
as these guys move on to the next challenges
in their lives.

Look out world, here they come!

These young people hold much power
in their hands.
Power to bring us joy,
to bring us to tears.
Power to move us to laughter
and to make us crazy.

They captured our loyalty
and hearts as they entered
this world, each with their
own personalities and gifts.

2010 - An unbelievable year -
and we have only just begun!

I am linking to Outdoor Wednesday
with Susan at A Southern Daydreamer.
Thanks Susan! I've missed having
outdoor shots to share...


Praise and Grief!

Did you know these two
things could be
very closely linked?
They can.

Yesterday I asked Mikey to
return a video to the store.
He left but returned way too
quickly stating that the car
had a problem. He insisted
that I should NOT drive it as
it was unsafe.

Well Warren got home from work
a bit later and took a drive.
He wasn't sure he was going to
make it back....

After some searching he found the
problem. The frame has rusted through
and the entire front end of the car
was flexing and about to break.

We are so thankful that this didn't
happen while Mikey was on a highway.
Warren said that it could have thrown
the wheels to the side and would very
likely have caused Mikey to lose control
or flip.

God was good to us...

Now to the grief part.
No, I am not really grieving the
car, per se, even though it is not
likely something that is worth fixing.

I am very sad because this was my parents
car before it became ours and it is one of
my last direct links to my Dad.

As time moves on more and more things associated
with him wear out or break and I lose them.

Sounds silly, doesn't it?

It is just stuff.

But, on a different level it is so
much more than that.

Dad had a recliner that he spent nearly
every evening in. During the days before
and after his death I would sit in that chair and
just feel close to him.
Poor Mom.
I made her bring it with her when she moved.
To this day it sits in her family room
and I love to go watch southern
gospel concerts on video while
sitting in his chair.
It is as close as I can get to
reliving those days when we sang
together and went to concerts together.

Last evening I drove up the road that
likely finished our car off. Don't get
me started on the reasons this road is
in such bad shape....think governmental
wisdom....anyway, my thoughts were spinning
with how close we came to a bad accident and
how very thankful I am that God protected
our son.

Takes the sting out of the situation...
in a very big way!


Monday, January 18, 2010

Busy Week Coming Up!

Hello Dear Friend,

Just to let you know that I will be
scarcer than usual on here this week.

My laptop caught a bug.

So, that means that if I want to chat
with you I must come downstairs and while
it is not a long journey it takes
me away from the kids, dogs and housework.

Normally, the laptop is on the way to just
about anything I do and I can "allow comments"
very quickly with little disruption to my
routine. This week, it could take longer.

On a different subject,
Bandit and I are starting a new routine.
She is a bit resistant to housebreaking so
we are going to begin taking morning strolls
to help things "move along".

I recall saying that she would be a workout
buddy for she will be that for
me, as well. Guess that is a good thing.

With the advent of a new season of "24" we
were out late last night at our friends home.
Two hours have never gone quite so quickly...
unless it was last year when the show came on.

On our way home we were shaken as we came upon
a large calf meandering on the road. We saw her in
plenty of time and stopped but had serious concerns
as another car came toward us and the calf was in
their lane. Warren flashed the lights and
they were able to stop. Both cars moved together
with the calf in between until we got it to a place
where it could get safely off the road.

Cows and horses are very real late night hazards
in our neck of the woods.
Animals and the many buggies that are
out and about in the late night hours.
Apparently the Amish have a lot of visiting
to do every other Sunday night.

Just moments after seeing the calf and then a dog
on the road we were amused to watch a tiny mouse
cross in front of us. From itty bitty mouse to the
good sized calf it was an interesting drive home.

I'll check back later to see what the most interesting
thing you have ever had to stop the car for might have
been...You always have such great stories!


Sunday, January 17, 2010

His Love Never Fails

For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations. Psalm 100:5

But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD's love is with those who fear him, and his righteousness with their children's children-Psalm 103:17

Praise the LORD. Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; his love endures forever.Psalm 106:1

The LORD will fulfill his purpose for me; your love, O LORD, endures forever— do not abandon the works of your hands.Psalm 138:8

Saturday, January 16, 2010

Watch out for Falling....


Our daily routine has changed
with the addition of Bandit.

Mostly my routine has changed.

Every morning finds me trekking
through the backyard trying to
teach a very quick and sneaky
puppy the boundaries.

She seems to love the house two
doors up and so has been back on
the leash until last night and
this morning. So good.
I keep the leash in my hand and
am prepared to put it on her at
her next transgression.

Anyhoo...Chloe usually comes
along and she is almost never
leashed in the yard. This
allows her the freedom to
chase the millions, well maybe
not millions, but all of the
squirrels. They tease and
taunt her...rushing up a
tree at the last moment.

The other morning this happened
and I wandered up that way.
The weather is getting nicer and
it is more fun to explore...
All of a sudden I heard
a thud
not far
from where
I was standing!

A squirrel!

Had fallen!
On his back!

From a huge tree!

He flipped himself over
and ran as fast as he could
while I breathed a sigh of
relief that he had not landed

Good grief!

take it from me.

Watch out for falling squirrels!
That could hurt!


Friday, January 15, 2010

Did You Notice?

At Candles at Hospitality Lane
I have made up six packs which
are now available with
free shipping!

If you get a chance,
take a peek at the new
fragrances for Spring.

You can also choose from the
original fragrance list on the

If you wish to you can choose your
own candle colors.

If you don't specify
I will use my usual colors.

Thanks to those of you who have
already ordered and tried my candles.
It is much appreciated!


Thursday, January 14, 2010

A Real Blessing

Today was our first day back to
our homeschool co-op
for the semester.

I am teaching two classes.
The normal 4-6th grade music
and a Jr/Sr High Drama Class.

It was a good day.

First up was the high school class.
Approximately twenty students
looking at me,
waiting for me to guide them.

Truth be told, I had a blast.

After some introductory things
the class was divided and they
began working on the first of their
skits. Lots of noise as each
sunk their teeth into their own
interpretations their assigned skits.

However, the biggest blessing came
during the next class period.

The music class assembled.
They were high
energy, as usual.
I took a deep breath
and prepared to begin.

I asked if anyone had a
prayer request to share.

Hands went up all over the class.
I kid you not,
there were probably fifteen different
requests shared and
more children thought
of things we could
pray for as I ran out of
time to call on them.

Now these kiddos weren't asking
us to pray for frivolous things.
One boy asked
for prayer for another
boy's mother who has been
struggling with a severe
reaction to an antibiotic
which has her in a wheelchair.

Another asked us
to pray about those
suffering in Haiti.
You would have been
so blessed to hear the things
that were on these guys minds.
So selfless in those moments.

Don't worry, they didn't sprout
angel wings over the Christmas Break.
They are still very high energy and a
real handful,
but they have hearts bigger
than the state of Texas!

It struck me what a heavy load
some of these young people carry.
They have concerns and fears.

I am praying that this day sticks with
me for a long time and that
I remember to pray with
and for them
and their many requests.

If you have a young person
in your life I would encourage
you to take some special time
and talk to them about things
that are on their minds.

Perhaps the earthquake in Haiti
has struck fear in their hearts
or maybe a friend's parents are
getting divorced and this has your
young one concerned. Whatever the
case it is up to us, the parents, to
stop and really listen.

It is worth your weight in gold
to invest this time in your children.

We don't have to have all
of the answers...
showing we care and will
be there to listen is such
a reassurance to these pre-teens.

Building strong ties at this
age pays huge dividends as our
young ones get older.

I don't mean to lecture
even though I know this ended
up sounding like one.

Today's events really had an



Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Winter Art

Who, but God?

Local Readers Can Help!

My heart breaks for those in Haiti who
are in such dire straights after this
massive earthquake. How I would love to
help in a big way. It is not within my
ability to do that right now, but there is
something else I am working on that some
of you could help with...

There is a woman we found out about who
had to get out of an abusive relationship
quickly. She left with the clothes on her
back. Actually I don't even know her name.
She is a friend of my mom's hairdresser.

This woman needs help setting up a new life.
Furniture, Pans, dishes, silverware,
Pictures for the cards to
Wal-Mart, etc.
You get the idea. She has nothing.

We will be loading a truck with a bed and
two chairs to take to her on Friday. Anyone
who has items to donate can contact me
and we will arrange to get them from you.

It takes a lot of courage to remove yourself
from what you know sometimes, even if it is
bad....I am excited to help this lady get
a healthy new start.

I understand she is a new believer, as well.
How neat it will be to meet her.
I do hope that through this effort of her
dear friend, the hairdresser, she sees the
love of Jesus in a tangible way!


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

I Raided Mikey's Camera Card

And found out that we should
have gotten him into gymnastics!

Hmmm....Horticulture vs. Gymnastics.

Funny kid!

Now, I am still looking for and taking
photos to use for his senior picture.

Chelsea took this yesterday....

It's a "maybe"...

We have a tiny bit of time yet.