Wednesday, April 30, 2014

Good-Bye April!

Now that we have reached the last day of April and are looking toward May, I just can't believe how the year just seems to be racing by. There are lots of good things about May. We have lots of birthdays in May. Mine is Friday and I think I will ignore it this year.

This was the defining moment of my life. It was my eleventh birthday. See my Mom in the background.
She is so sick with cancer. By the time my next birthday would come around, she would be gone and I would have a new step-mother and three step brothers. Life is so full of twisting and turns. Had not all of that happened I would not be who I am. I can say, I am thankful for it all. Though, I admit to this, it is what I remember every year, this birthday.

Ron was reading one of his Bonsai books and he found this from a book called " Shohin Bonsai, Unlocking the Secrets of Small Trees."
The concept is called Wabi-Sabi.
" Wabi-Sabi is a key concept in the art of bonsai. Wabi-Sabi understands beauty to be imperfect, impermanent and incomplete. Nothing perfect, nothing lasts forever, nothing is really complete.
Nature is perfect in its imperfection imperfection is valuable in bonsai. You could call Wabi-sabi and intuitive appreciation of the transient beauty of the physical world. there is a bittersweet quality that exists in a modest, rustic, imperfect or even decayed item that communicates the impermanence of all things."

As I thought about life and where it has led me. I thought about the beauty in the imperfections. Life sometimes leads us in places we would not go. Sometimes things happen that we would rather not go
through, but in the going through them we find we are in a place better than we ever dreamed.
"If God is almighty, there can be no evil so great as to be beyond His power to transform. That transforming power brings light out of darkness, joy out of sorrow, gain out of loss, life out of death."

So as I thought about the art of Bonsai, and how the work that goes into each tree to make beauty, I thought, yes, life is like that too. We are carefully tended and molded and loved. Like Bonsai, we have to be shaped, cut and wired. I watch as Ron takes those little limbs and wires them so that that tree will have a curve, or take a branch that would keep you from seeing the shape of the tree. So it is with us. For me, I see how God has caused in my own life the beauty of the imperfections, to make me  and to keep me dependent on Him for my life. I always see my weaknesses, my flaws and my failings. When Ron read the Wabi-Sabi to me it was like a light came on, because it is the beauty in the imperfections that draw us to the beauty that is all around us.

Thank you for stopping by to read my ramblings. Thank you so much for that. As I look through my life today, I am thankful for the gifts that overflow into my life. As always the good far outweighs the hard.
I wish you blessings upon blessings today.

 "Their souls shall be like a well-watered garden, and they shall sorrow no more at all."
Jeremiah 31:12

Monday, April 28, 2014

Odds and Ends

Here we are at Monday again and May is just around the corner. The weather man said that we may reach our first 100 degree day on my birthday. It is good for the garden. They like warm weather. All of the seedlings are now outside getting ready to be planted and getting hardened off. My bathtub is now just a bathtub. It is so nice to have it back.

I got to have my grandsons this last weekend. We did lots of things. When they stay over our first stop is my shed and they get to go through their Dad's and uncles toy boxes. Then they bring it all back in the house.  It  was cold and cloudy that day. So they didn't get to play in the big sand pile.

Mousetrap is always a big hit. Out there in my shed was a brand new Jurassic Park back pack. They wanted to bring it inside and it was handy putting toys in to move from room to room.

Train tracks and cars and all kinds of odds and ends that they find interesting. The things that I find bittersweet, is I remember my kids playing with these things.

I let them watch Dark Wing Duck so that is what this costume is that we put together. I have so many costumes in the toy boxes. Sasha is always close to them. She never lets them out of her sight.

I was glad I was able to get them all in one place and still. Most of my pictures come out as blurs.
I think their Mom will have to give them lots of good food this week. Grandma fixed things like hot chocolate with whip cream and lots and lots of sprinkles. They learned to spray whip cream by themselves. Then they had corn dogs and pizza and macaroni and cheese. Though Grandpa did fix waffles for them. We watched Iron Giant after pizza. I read them Indian in the Cupboard. We went for walks and they dug up every ant hill we passed. They drew rainbows because we had rain and a very nice rainbow was visible from the house.

The boys who live here were busy helping Emilie and Nik move to our side of town. Which is going to be so nice. So it was a busy weekend all and all. Now to get my house all ship shape again. There is lots to do. I hope you have a lovely week.


" Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him."
Psalm 37:7

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Work in Progress

Happy Thursday to you all!! I hope you have all had a good week. It has been busy here this week. It looks to be just as busy this weekend.

I wanted to show you a few of my works in progress. I have when I have had the time hooked a little bit on a chicken rug. I do enjoy chicken rugs. I really need to get a sketch book and start drawing out patterns in my head.

 I was thinking of taking the design of that big chicken and making some chicken pillows. I think that might be fun.

I also had a bit of time for some counted cross stitch. I don't know when I will get back to it though.

The second surgery is coming up so I will have to take a break from stitching for awhile.

As I was checking the garden today I have sunflowers up and some beets I think. Beets and goatheads look a lot alike.

I also finally opened my etsy store. I can't figure out how to get the link in my sidebar yet so here is the link.
Old Farm House Rugs

I hope you have a great weekend.

It will be a busy one here.


---If wishes were horses beggars would ride---
( Traditional nursery rhyme first recorded by William Camden's " Remaines of a Greater Worke Concerning Great Britaine. 1605)

( It was something my Mom would say to me as a child when I would be caught up in wishing rather than working.)

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Thinking On Wednesday

Do you ever find yourself thinking about random things? One of the things I have been thinking about is Pinterest. I quit getting catalogs because they made me feel twitchy and discontent. Now I have Pinterest to look at and become very discontent. I have now pinned things that I could never possibly hope to do in 7 lifetimes. Not to mention it makes me discontent. I said that didn't I?  One thing I am glad about is that in order to make the food I pin, I have to get out of the chair and go do it. I am thankful I can't reach my hand through the screen. I would be as big as a house. I hardly pin good food just desserts.

Do you ever wonder that the world isn't getting weirder. I had to go to Target. It was early since I do all of my errands early because of less people. There were only a couple of check stands going. As I pushed my cart to one I noticed a lady in one of those red wheel chairs, turning around and around. Then she started shouting at the top of her voice, " We need checkers!!! We need more checkers!!" Well, I sort of jumped as it was so loud. I walked to a check out where there wasn't a line and put my stuff on the belt. The lady in the wheel chair came and glared at me and asked the ladies if they were open. They looked at each other and said, " No, we have to go clean the bathrooms." She huffed and left.  I apologized and they said no it was okay they were open when I walked up.

I asked about cleaning the bathrooms and they said that in Target you have to clean the bathrooms every 30 minutes. I said, " 30 minutes really?" Then they began to tell me what sort of unimaginable things go on in bathrooms, in Target. Like a woman washing her dog in one of the sinks. So is it just me or does this stuff go on where you live?

The other thing I wonder about and just makes me feel odd are the people who stop with their cameras and take pictures of my house. Why? Are they bloggers? I always feel like is there something going on I don't know about. My hydrangeas aren't blooming yet. It gets bad then. 

Or the random people who drive up on bikes, and come to the door and ask for people who I have never heard of and then keep coming back. Are they going to rob the place or is it a code word we don't know.

A  man came to the door. He walked up the driveway looking around so happily. I watched and tried to figure out what he was doing. He was smiling and acting like he was hearing music. As he got to the door, I kept Sasha near me barking and growling. I don't normally let her do that. He looked around and said, " Where is that lovely music coming from? I looked around and I couldn't hear anything, and I know my face was blank, I said, " What music?"  He said, that heavenly music, and I realized he was talking about the wind chimes. The wind was blowing a bit. He said, he stopped his car and heard it and just had to walk up and ask. Then he turned and left.

I keep thinking maybe I am in some alternate dimension. I was just wondering it can't be me.

I hope you have a wonderful Wednesday. I hope my day is a nice and normal one. What ever that is.


" You can pay to high for a bit of soft living."
---The Borrowers Aloft, Mary Norton 1961

Monday, April 21, 2014

Monday Again

I hope you all had a lovely day. I don't think I could have asked for a more perfect day. It was the perfect temperature for being outside. We picked our first crop of Artichokes.

There is maybe double this amount to be picked. So many of them and all of them so pretty.

I found this poor little blue jay. The Mom and Dad were just above my head. They are so used to me they were quiet while it took its picture and then left. As I got in the house, I watched the poor Mother and Dad  try and try to get the baby to fly. He ran fast and flapped his little wings but couldn't get very high. They would fly down and feed it over and over and then keep working with it.

Later when we were out in the garden, Sasha found it. (Somehow it had got over the fence.) It broke my heart to see this little bird stand up to the dog. It stared at her and was so brave. I grabbed her by the collar and put her in the yard. She isn't a killing dog, but she does like to herd. Sometimes she gets too rough, the parents were frantic. I was afraid for it last night, but this morning, even though I didn't look hard. The Mom and Dad were still on duty, so it made it though the night. I hope today they get it to fly today. I really liked watching them working with the baby.

The chicks now are tiny chickens. I have decided that Buff Orpingtons  just might be my favorite. What a nice breed of chicken. So calm and gentle. Cuckoo Marans are too but these chicks want to be in my arms all of the time. I got a rooster from this bunch. Not happy about it, but my son said he would take it and turn it into fried chicken. I am okay, so I am not picking it up or even looking at it much. He is also going to take my little black silkie for the same reason. That maybe a bit harder, but he is such a little Nazi I am ready for him to be gone.

Yesterday, we were out on the patio and the kids were playing sword fights and the adults were visiting, Nik decided to throw pots. We sat on the patio and watched him and talked and laughed. There is something so peaceful about watching someone work with clay. Meg said next year she would bring her spinning wheel. As I sat there, I was so thankful for each and every one. Forgive me for bragging, but they are the most talented group of people and I am pretty sure watching them we could survive a zombie Apocalypse. I should have taken pictures of the knives Ben makes. I told him yesterday I am going to start  a Pinterest category, called Stuff I want Ben to make.

Here is a vase Nik made too.

The kids hunted Easter eggs. That was fun and then what I hope becomes a tradition for next year.
Meg brought 18 plastic eggs and goodies to put in them. Ron and I filled them and then we hid them out in the garden. It was almost sundown and seeing those young people run around looking for eggs was so much fun. The eggs had money and then Meg had written out notes that were the size of a dollar bill, which were so funny. One of them said, " Golden ticket, You loose Charlie." Things like that.

Then after that the kids did the Easter eggs with the story of Easter. I made the little things in the eggs when Ben was small and he helped me collect everything. Now  it is so much fun to share it with his sons. Then we had communion with our family. The little families each having their own elements. There is nothing that makes me more thankful or in awe is sitting in the living room with our family and praying.

When we were young, and I wasn't really very sure about being a Christian or reading the Bible or anything to do with it. I had lived in the world and was pretty satisfied with how things were and didn't know if I wanted to change. Ron came home, and as he flew in the door, all smiles. He said, " God gave me a verse about our life!" Me always the skeptic, wanted to see this verse he was so excited about.

"Give, and it will be given to you. A good measure, pressed down, shaken together and running over, will be poured into your lap. For with the measure you use, it will be measured to you."
(Luke 6:38)

When I sit and see how this is how we have been given, I see more often than not how little that I have given and how overflowing the blessing is in my lap. I am so thankful I went ahead with the plan. However grudgingly I did it. Our children have turned out to be nice people. 

That was the day. Best holiday ever, if our oldest daughter and her family had been here, it would have been the best. 

Have a lovely Monday, forgive my bragging, I know it is over the top today. But if you knew me in person and the life I lived and the mistakes I made, you would understand, why I am in shock most of the time that this is my life. It must be that Dad of theirs. Because it certainly isn't me.  Not to mention that God is good all of the time. 


" I wish we had tails to wag," said Mr. Dearly."
---101 Dalmatians, Dodie Smith, 1957

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Happy Easter

Jesus Has Risen

 On the first day of the week, very early in the morning, the women took the spices they had prepared and went to the tomb.  They found the stone rolled away from the tomb, but when they entered, they did not find the body of the Lord Jesus.  While they were wondering about this, suddenly two men in clothes that gleamed like lightning stood beside them.  In their fright the women bowed down with their faces to the ground, but the men said to them, “Why do you look for the living among the dead?  He is not here; he has risen! Remember how he told you, while he was still with you in Galilee:  ‘The Son of Man must be delivered over to the hands of sinners, be crucified and on the third day be raised again.’ ”

 Then they remembered his words.

Have a wonderful day.
From our family to yours,

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Just Saturday

We are having our kids and grand kids over tomorrow for dinner and a nice day of  visiting and the kids hunting Easter eggs. We are going to BBQ. I have all of the ingredients out on the counter so I can start getting my food together. We have a water purifier under the sink. It broke. The water is turned off. We have to buy a new one and Ron will have to install it. I am becalmed. I am dead in the water.

I don't know why, but it seems like before every holiday and I am supposed to be fixing food, we have some water issue. I know it will all work out and we of course won't starve. I am fixing this cake called a Strawberry Sheet cake. I can't wait to fix that. I try to fix things that my grand kids like. One thing that I love about them is they are not like their parents were growing up, they were picky eaters. Our grands are not. They will eat anything. That makes cooking so much fun.

We have blueberries. I took the picture before I ate the three that were ripe. They were nice. I wish I had about 10 times more blueberries.

I worked on some more goodies in my sewing box. I have one more thing to finish then I can put this thing away. I have had so much fun making it.

I have enjoyed sewing like this again. Ron and I have been listening to a Librivox recording of Treasure Island. I sew and he makes trees. I will put a link to his Etsy store soon. My blog has gone wonky and I had to jump through hoops to write this post. I wasn't sure if I was going to be able to even find my dashboard. All of the links are gone.

Have a lovely Easter.

"He isn't here! He is risen from the dead, just as he said would happen. Come, see where his body was lying."
(Matthew 28:6)

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

10 Things I Love About April


This morning I was sitting and watching the sun come up over the mountains. I was thinking of all of the things I love about April. These are a few of the things I love about April.

    1. The sunrise and how every morning there are surprises as the sun peaks over the different mountains. In the winter it peaks over Bear Mountain. Now it is peaking over Greenhorn.

    2. The long evenings. Sitting outside is warm enough to sit and watch the sun set and then as the twilight deepens and the shadows deepen the sky turning to velvet and then the stars blinking one by one.

    3. The wonderful smell of spring and how there is just the hint of orange blossoms, rose petals and now jasmine and mock orange.

4.In April, there is just a bit of coolness to the air, even if it is 90 degrees. After most of the month has been 85-90 next week we will have snow in the mountains and the high will be 66. That makes me very happy. In April no matter what it is still spring.

5. In April, all of the beautiful flowers that are blooming. The green on the trees and the lovely chicks tha
I have and sit outside watching them every day.

6. Cadbury Mini Eggs.

7. Spring Vacation.

8. The mockingbirds singing in the morning and watching them jump high in the sky and do little back flips because they are just so happy. Like my chicks running and jumping in feathery little bits of joy .

9. Watching all of the new birds flying in for a visit and then flying on. I see so many stopping to take a bath in the swimming pool.

10. Just life, I am aware of how blessed I am and how happy I feel most of the time, but in April there just seems to be nice things all around.


"The world is so full of a number of things,
I'm sure we should all be as happy as kings

R.L.Stevenson---A Child's Garden of Verses.

Monday, April 14, 2014

Passover Begins Today

One of the things I have loved about this year is how Easter and Passover have lined up. Yesterday was Palm Sunday and today begins Passover. When I was a new believer, a wonderful family invited us to their home to share Passover with them. Being Christians, they shared Passover because as Completed Jews, (They were Jewish people who believed in Jesus as their Messiah) It was a wonderful gift to them. It was a life changing moment to me. I thought I would spend a bit of time sharing this.

God commanded in Exodus 12 that this day be kept. Passover is the celebration of God's delivering His people out of the slavery of the Pharaoh.  On this night God promised that He would visit every house to execute judgement and would take the life of the first-born son unless the family had marked the door of their house with the blood of a perfect lamb. Then he would passover that family and no one would die when he saw the blood on the lintel and the door posts.

At the Seder we attended we ate standing up. Only the Father seated at the head of the table, the dishes are by the father so he may begin passing the dishes. The oldest son begins by asking his father, " Why is this night different from all other nights?"  The oldest son asks 4 times that same question as the Father explains each food.

Matazoth---wafers of unleavened bread---To remind us of the fact that the Israelites did not have time to wait for yeast bread to rise to be ready to move when God said. (For the Christian this reminds us to live so that we are always "ready to go" When Jesus returns. Also yeast sometimes represented the evil in the world. God wants his people to be pure.)

Maror---bitter herbs, usually freshly grated horse-radish or other bitter herbs, pungent vegetable such as onion. These herbs are a reminder of the bitter suffering in Egyptian slavery. They are dipped in salt water to signify the tears of bitter suffering.  (For the Christian, this reminds us that many have suffered that we may know the joy of the good news of Jesus. So in our Celebration, we remember the great cost.)

Haroseth---A mixture of chopped apples, nuts, cinnamon, and wine. This represents the mortar with which the Israelites were force to make bricks to build Pharaoh's great cities. ( See Exodus 2:11-14 and 5:4-23)

The shank of bone of a lamb---This is the symbol of the lamb that was sacrificed for sins ( For the Christian, this represents Jesus, God's own gift of a perfect Lamb for the sins of all.

There are still the elements  of the roasted egg, parsley or watercress, wine or grape juice and Elijah's cup. Then of course, the empty tomb. For me I learned that so often  I look only the cross. I feel sad, but really I should focus on that empty tomb and see it not as a tragedy but a triumph. 

Thank you for reading along,

Most of this material is taken from the book " Lets Make a Memory" by Gloria Gaither and Shirley Dobson 1983 It is the best book on understanding The Passover and the completed meaning of the Seder Feasts.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Finishing Mrs. Rabbit

With it warming up out here, I needed to get Mrs. Rabbit finished. Well except for binding the edges. I didn't have enough wool yarn to finish that and I will get to that pretty soon. Maybe next week when it is a bit cooler. This is the biggest rug I have ever hooked. I am ready to work on some smaller ones for awhile.

Such a fun project. This pattern was designed by Sharon Smith. It is such a big rug it is hard for me to get a good picture.
I ended up using 2 yards of wool for the background all by itself. Someday I might do this rug again. I learn so much from every single rug I hook.

Also this last week I finished up the second little stitchery project. I joined a group on Face Book called the Prim Stitchers  Society. That has been fun to see so many Prim projects and it is very motivating. Such beautiful work has been shared.

I have had such fun with my box. That time when I was waiting for my first eye surgery and I would pick up patterns and look at them and think I might not ever do this again, I told myself that I was going to do every single pattern I bought even if the collection had two or three different patterns in it. So I am doing just that. I still have one eye that hasn't been fixed so last night I covered my eye with my hand and all of the stars disappeared from the sky. Orion's belt was gone that fast. Then I covered the bad eye and all of the stars were back. I still marvel and I am thankful I have one good eye and one bad eye as it keeps me being reminded of how it could be if not for medical advances. To be thankful that God continues to guide my life.

Have a lovely Sunday, filled with good things.


My prayer for this day: Palm Sunday
" Are we assured that we are safe in the hands that hold the stars?
Can we wholeheartedly surrender to God, leaving quietly with Him all the "What ifs" and "but what abouts"? Will we truthfully say to Him,
" Anything You choose for me, Lord---to have to be, to do, or to suffer. I am at Your orders.
I have no agenda of my own"? It comes down to Trust and Obey."
---Secure in the Everlasting Arms, Elisabeth Elliot.

Saturday, April 12, 2014

And Then...

Today marks 34 years of our life together. On this day 34 years ago, I was sitting in my room, looking out my window, watching my Dad sob in the back yard as it was going to be my wedding day. My Grandpa who lived in Oregon had been at our house for a week, and kept taking me for walks and asking, " Was I sure I wanted to do this,"  and then stuffing 50 and 100 dollar bills in my pockets. I knew if I could just make it to the church, it would be fine. I never not one time in the years I have known Ron or been married ever have doubted his loyalty, his love, his dependance on God. His ability to to take dreams, ideas and vision and turn it in to reality. He has kept me on my toes. I wanted to just say the vows, and leave. My Mom kept threatening me, that " We had better show up at that reception!!! I really wanted to just let them have the party and start the honeymoon early. We went, but were the first to leave.

The best part for me was going to the drive through at McDonald's in my wedding dress.

 We have had good times and hard times. We have been richer and poorer. We have had sickness and health. We have been so mad at each other we could have killed each other but one of us makes the other one laugh and then we see the idiocy of our fight. I can always stay mad at him until he touches my arm or even a finger and I just fall apart. So strong is his power in my life. To be without him would be worse than death.

We have had such a lovely time raising our family. We have always had such fun. One of the things I wanted for our wedding was that I would have a house filled with laughter. It has been and continues to be just that, for that I am thankful.  When we started having children and I of course wanted to stop at two, he always would ask for just one more. That has been our life. He wants just one more and I want things filled to the brim. We have had weddings.

Our family has grown and expanded and to think it started on this day 34 years ago makes me so thankful that no matter what I am still if not happier today than I was that day long ago. I had no idea life would be filled with such sweet blessings. We were talking the other day, how he wanted to marry me and I got in my car and drove for 5 hours to Sacramento just to think. I knew my life would change and I could see my own selfishness, and self-centeredness  and I was so afraid I would mess up his life.

We have one more baby to add to our family. Our pictures keep changing so fast, just as fast as life is moving on. It has never been boring or dull. It has been full to the brim full of life.
Next year, I am not getting chicks so I can go on a trip.

I hope you have a delightful Saturday. I think we will, putting in the garden. We have always enjoyed growing things and seeing the work of our hands blossom and grow.

Yes, if I had it to do over again, I wouldn't change one single thing. Not one single thing. Well maybe one thing, I would have had more kids. I did always want ten. You are such a great Dad.

Have a great weekend and thank you for reading along.


" Now only time will tell;
How deep in love I fell,
If I fall for a thousand years:
I won't know to tell..."
---The song he wrote and sang at our wedding.---
April 12, 1980