Category Archives: Bible studies

Indiana

I love my state.  I cannot deny it. I have been in almost all the states except Hawaii and Rhode Island and while all the states have something to offer and many are simply beautiful, I am always glad to get back to Indiana.   It’s been my home all my life and I’ve had a great life in it. No, we don’t have mountains, but we have rolling hills and valleys. No, we don’t have an ocean, but we have rivers and great lakes.  We also have weather that changes on a dime.  Cold today?  Just wait. Tomorrow you will be turning the air conditioner on to freeze.

This weekend David and I drove through southern Indiana. We were going somewhere.

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A Beth Moore Bible conference in Evansville.   I went to Evansville with my youth group when I was a teen-ager to visit Evansville College where I was thinking of going and to see a football game there.   I didn’t remember much about the city.

So with my trusty chauffeur in the driver’s seat, off we went.

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He wasn’t sure about all of this. You see, Beth Moore conferences are mainly for women.  Very few men attend them, but since way back in January I bought two tickets thinking I would give one to a friend and because no one was free that particular weekend, David was going to attend.  I told him it was just like going to church and since we missed our church services this weekend, we would still be worshipping.  He agreed reluctantly.   But it was a weekend away and we had other things planned as well.  Shopping, antiquing, sight seeing.

I went to one other Beth Moore conference with some friends from church and we had a great time.  But I do remember the music being very loud.

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Travis Cottrell does all the music for her conferences.

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You do feel like you are among friends when you are there.

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When all the women got their seats there were five thousand women(and a few lonely men) waiting to worship.

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Then Beth came out.  Her study was about God’s feet.  I know, it sounds strange until you know the context of what she was talking about. How God came to earth and he was an innocent baby with tiny little feet. He grew to be a man and wore sandals that John the Baptist said he was not worthy to unlatch.  The sick, lame and blind were brought to His feet to be healed.  People fell at his feet.   So many passages about Jesus’ feet in the Bible. That God’s sits on his throne in heaven and the earth is His footstool.  That Adam and Eve heard God’s very footsteps in Eden.    I never thought about God like this.  And that one day His feet will stand in Jerusalem once more.   And one day every single person will bow at His feet and proclaim Him Lord.

Now, I love Beth Moore conferences, but I do have one complaint.  A complaint that probably most of the young women attending the conference don’t have. I think the music is way too loud.  It hurt my ears. I don’t listen to much music anyway since I think music went downhill after the sixties!    David held his ears the whole time and he said he still could feel the beat, beat, beat of the drums on his chest.   It probably is our generation, but I like worship services to be a little more quiet and reverential.    I wonder if we can hear God’s still, small voice through all the noise.    Please, don’t take this personally if this is how your church worships.   If it’s a true worshipful service and it’s not just about the music and being entertained, then go for it.  I don’t think I will be getting David to another Beth Moore conference in the near future, however.

I felt like I learned a lot and want to do some more studying on the subject of God’s feet.

We didn’t go to the Saturday morning conference as we wanted the day for traveling and taking our time and not rushing to get home.  So we got up the next morning and searched for a donut shop. Yes, more donuts.  We found a Krispy Kreme and when we walked in the store’s door, the girl behind the counter immediately handed each of us a donut warm from the oven. Oh, my, goodness.  What a way to start the day!   We ordered some donuts and a coffee for me to go and set off to find a place to eat them on the Ohio River.  Did I say it was 102 degrees outside that day?    We decided to sit in the air conditioned car to eat our breakfast and look at the river.

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While at our motel, I read about the town of Newburgh.  It has an interesting story.  During the American Civil War, Confederate soldiers were seen across the Ohio River on the Kentucky side.  The leader of the Confederates knew they could not take the city with the few men he had so they took burned logs and stove pipes and made them look like cannons and made a lot of noise as if it was a great army and wouldn’t you know?  The whole town surrendered.  The Confederates came into town and got all the food and munitions they could find and then left.  Not a shot was heard because there was none.

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The town seems to take some pride in this.  I guess it’s their claim to fame.  Funny.  But that is not all the town is known for.  It’s a place out of history with so many old houses.  When we first drove into town we immediately saw this little store(which turned out having three buildings with neat things to buy.)

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Yes, they were retiring Vera.

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It was chock full of all kinds of goodness. I bought a few things, of course.

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I almost bought him.  I could kick myself for abstaining.

Newburgh is so wonderful.  How could you not love a town that gives one whole side of a street to walking paths?

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Walkers on the left, cars on the right.  The way it should be everywhere!  And there were a lot of people out walking in the horrible heat. Carrying water bottles  Smart.

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River towns take pride in how they were settled.   And their homes reflect their pride.

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This little white house had lime green and pink painted windows.  Cute.

We drove by secret gardens.

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We kept seeing these bushes and found out they were Crepe Mertles.  I don’t know if we are a little too far north to grow these.  We were in the south, don’t you know!

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Up and down streets, always with the great Ohio River within view.

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On back streets most tourists never see.  We love exploring the towns we are in.  There is never enough time to see it all, no matter how small the town.  I think I could live in any of these little towns and be happy as long as I had a garden.

Down a back street and we saw this.

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Large rock formations and we wondered how they were formed and only formed in this place.

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Then we saw these stair going up the side of the rock, so we stopped. “You going up?” I asked David.  I knew with my short legs and the steps being about one foot apart, it would be a chore for me, so I knew I  I wasn’t going.  “Sure, I’ll try it,” David replied.

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So up he began.

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Up.

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Up.

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Almost there.

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“I made it and you didn’t!”  How I wish I was up there with him.

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Wait. Now it’s starting to scare me.  Where is he going?

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No, no that is enough!   When he turned around and came down I asked him what was up there. “Not a darn thing,” he answered.  Oh, well. It looked like there might have been a cave up there.

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Evidently there had been a cave because some man thought it was a great place to live.

On to other little river towns.

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On a back street where we were the only people, there was a little yellow swing so we sat ourselves down and looked at this.

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The Ohio River flowing by.  How I love it.

Behind us was this.

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A mural painted on the side of the walls to keep out the flood waters when the river rises.

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This shows how far the river rose in these particular years.

Well, it wasn’t going to rise today.  They were having a dry spell in southern Indiana while we have had lots of rain where we live and flooding in the northern part of the state.

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The River trail.  It’s a great drive if you want to take it one day.

It was time to hurry on down the road through more little towns and we saw some very old buildings.

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We managed to drive to Rome, but no coliseums to see there. Only this wonderful old building.

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Sat down in the middle of nowhere.

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Right on the corner of Main and Mulberry.

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It was Rome’s courthouse, but there were very few houses around.

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This old building use to house an antique store. There were still antiques inside, but it doesn’t look like it’s been open for years.

Across the street was this building.

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At one time a cotton mill.  Now it’s apartments.  If I had to live in an apartment, this would be a great place to live. I would have loved to have seen inside.

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They have rooms to rent if you are looking for some out of the way place to live.

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It was built one hundred years before I was born and appears to be in great shape.  Don’t think I would hold up that well in another hundred years!

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I always look for barn quilts when we travel, but this is the only one I photographed.

We ate our supper at the Overlook, a restaurant right on the Ohio River with wonderful views from every window. We were high up there with the birds.   Our meal was catfish and was it ever good.

We were almost home but wanted some hand dipped ice cream for dessert.  That is hard to find, but finally I saw a big sign on a building in Salem.  Six Scoops was the name of the ice cream shop.  We put it on Garmin and she led us right to the door.

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And look what was painted on the side walk right outside.

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So cute and the ice cream was so good and a wonderful ending to a perfect weekend.

Here’s to Indiana, it’s old river towns and ice cream. Bye.

 

 

 

 

 


 

 

 

 

 

May Days, an Author, and a Lightning Strike

We are in the merry month of May.  One of my very favorite months of the year when the flowers are in full bloom and I can plant even more.  I just went to the grocery this morning and this particular grocery has had the best perennials I have ever purchased for sell again this year.   I came home with three new lilies and some Gerbera daisies.  Now to find a place to plant them.  My garden is quite full.  I asked David the other day if he thought I would ever have enough flowers and he said, “No.”  Simple as that.  He knows me too well to think I will ever stop adding flowers to my garden.  I did take some flower starts to my oldest son this weekend who is trying to cultivate a small garden by his front door for curb appeal.  I took lilies, lambs Ear, irises and Shasta Daisies.  Now, I hope he plants them and doesn’t let them die.

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  The crabapple has bloomed and gone.  It was so beautiful and now I have to wait a whole year to see it again. 

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Begonias and some sweet flowers on the front porch.

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Look!  Aren’t these the sweetest little flowers?  I don’t know what they are called, but I love them.

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Oh, I wish you could have smelled the Mock Orange this year.  It grows right by our driveway and just walking by them one can smell their lovely fragrance.  They are thick in the Tiny Woods and since we cut the big tree down, they seem to be expanding, which is fine with me.

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David’s grandmother’s snowball bush is so lush and lovely this year.  I just want to stand and stare at it.  We have a smaller one in the back yard and one I just planted in the front yard.  It’s such a beautiful bush.  Molly tried trimming it so we had to put wire around it for a time until she got over the urge to do so.

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My little garden in a cup that I plant every year.  Just some grass and little birds and a bird house I found at a bird store.

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Don’t ask me what this plant is.  It is ferny and in the Autumn it’s branches are a bright yellow. This is the first year I have seen flowers on it which makes me very happy.  I don’t even remember planting it, but I must have as it sure doesn’t look like a weed.

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I simply love Irises because of their simplicity.  They are the easiest flower to grow.  You almost can’t kill them(as if I would try.)  They can take over my whole garden if they want to.  One day when I am too old to go out and divide and weed and plant, these Irises will grow all over my front yard and I won’t care a bit. 

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This little girl loves my garden too.

Besides gardening, I have had a seven week Bible study at my house.  It was called “What Are You Afraid Of?” By David Jeremiah.  It used Biblical references to show us why in any circumstance God is with us and will not forsake us.   It dealt with the death of loved ones, loneliness, fear of financial collapse, fear of natural disasters and other things.  We all have certain fears in life and life deals out some pretty rotten things sometimes, but God is always there in the midst of it all to help us and give us peace though the worst times.  None of us gets out of this life without something horrible happening to us or our loved ones.  I can tell you some pretty sad stories, but I don’t like to dwell on the sadness in life.   I’ve had some knocks and bings and bangs, but I have always felt like God was right there with me through them.  I know you are probably asking why God would put any of us through bad times.  He doesn’t.  we live in a sinful world and God gives us free will.  Things don’t always go as planned.  People we love die.  People we love go through tough times.  We go through tough times, but remember this, If you put your trust in God, He will see you through the worst times of your life.  I can vouch for that.

At the last Bible study, we had a British tea.  Or at least our version of a British tea.  The ladies all pitched in and we had a feast.

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Actually, the table was fuller than this and another table besides and we had so much good food to choose from.  I had made cucumber sandwiches( which I am now addicted to) and egg salad sandwiches.  I baked a sponge cake and had strawberries and real whipped cream with scones.  I am now a fan of scones also.

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These are some of the ladies.  I didn’t show their faces as we all were eating and no one wants their faces on a blog with their mouths stuffed full!  It was a wonderful study and I love all these ladies who are my sisters in Christ.

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I am still knitting socks.  I love the process.  I still have to tear out once in a while, but I don’t get all upset about it.  Just look at it as more practice.  I have taught myself a new way to pick up the stitches down the heel and around and up the heel again using one double pointed needle and my little circular needles.  It has become quite simple for me now.  The only place I really get hung up is using the DP needles to decrease the toe, but it is coming easier as I continue to knit socks.   I have several skeins of sock yarn I am looking forward to making into socks.

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I have purchased three circular needles and these cute stitch markers.  Little sheep on the end of them.  I like them better than the plain rubber circles I was using.  Makes knitting more festive somehow.

This Mother’s Day weekend, David and I went on an adventure.  We took a road trip to Cincinnati to see some special people.

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We drove along a road in southern Indiana that follows the Ohio River.

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The Ohio River is so beautiful and mysterious.  The road we were on was not heavily traveled, so we enjoyed the drive.

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Indiana roads have so much beautiful scenery.  David and I like to get off the beaten path and discover new roads.  But finally, we got into the towns near Cincinnati, Vevay, Rising Sun and Aurora.  Aren’t those pretty names for towns?  Then into the bustling traffic of the big city.  Who were we going to see?

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If you have any of her cookbooks or her first two books in this trilogy, or read her blog, you know of whom I speak.

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The Joseph Beth bookstore in Cincinnati.  I got to see Susan Branch!!!     I love her books and could not wait to see her in person.  I have seen several authors in person and it’s always been fun.

We all waited with excitement for Susan to appear.

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Suddenly, there she was right in front of us.  She told us she was uncomfortable speaking in public, but she was wonderful.  She told how her books came to life and took questions with so much patience.  You know, when you meet a well-known person, you usually have expectations of them, rightly or wrongly, that they will be as you imagined them to be.  Susan Branch did not disappoint.  She is every bit as charming, sweet, kind, nice and interesting as I thought she would be.  She is a very pretty lady with a very sweet smile and she had us all laughing and it felt like we were her girlfriends.

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I loved the outfit she had on. Very classy.  A pretty linen blouse with a scarf.  Her hair was done up in a knot on her head and she just looked darling.

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Her husband Joe, of whom she writes, was there by her side.  Her partner in crime like David is with me.

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He and David took pictures of each other.  Give a man a camera……..

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I just want all of you who read Susan Branch’s books or blog to know, she is for real and not a fake.  She is just exactly as she appears on her blog.  A beautiful person.

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And then, I got to shake her hand and she signed my book and put David’s name in it too, because I asked her to.

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I’m not at all happy to be there!

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I think I was just looking at her with adoration here.

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Look how cute she is.   I could move to Martha’s Vineyard and become her friend in a second.  I’d even make her a quilt if she wanted one.  Am I starting to sound like a stalker?  I hope not.

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I had made a new purse to take to the book signing and on a whim, I asked her to sign it and she did!  Now wasn’t that nice?  Oh, and see that top I have on?  It was new and I wore the store tag on it the whole time and didn’t know it!  David told me after it was all over.  Wonderful.  Hope Susan didn’t see it.

I had so much fun at the book signing.  Met some nice people in the audience.  People who loved Susan as much as I.  Anyway, it was a wonderful time and I am so glad I got to go.

On Mother’s day, we went with our son and his friends to King’s Island for the day.  We hadn’t been to King’s Island for probably at least twenty years.  There are a lot more scary rides there which I would not go on.  I went on one they promised me was not scary and I was crying before it was over. I am not a fan of scary rides.   There’s enough scary stuff in the world without purposely putting yourself in danger!  Security was high that day for some reason.  They were searching all purses and bags and wanding all of us as we entered.

At the restaurant in which we ate, there was a live show where they sang songs from the movies.  It was so good and had me singing right along with them.  We got some really good fudge just before we left the park.    I didn’t get any pictures of the day because I didn’t want to carry my camera around all day.  It was fun and I enjoyed watching David go on all the scary rides with our son.  He’s got a stronger stomach than I do.  It was so nice to spend time with out son also.  He makes me laugh.  A lot.

I haven’t been here for a while because our house was struck by lightning a week ago Sunday.  David and I were in bed and suddenly there was the brightest flash of light and the loudest boom I have heard that I nearly fell out of bed.  It woke David, and I said, “That hit something.”  It surely did.  We lost two televisions, our microwave, the dryer, our Direct tv, our internet, a sewing machine(I was so thankful all the rest of my machines were unplugged at the time,)  our pool pump surge control, and the circuit breaker on our hot tub.  We got everything replaced except our internet, which we just got back today.  I couldn’t wait to write my blog.

Now that all is back to normal or what I consider normal I can write more often.  Or at least I will try.

Here’s to books, wonderful authors, sons and daughters and flowers.  May they all be blessed.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

Boys, Bibles and Backwoods

The days have been busy and yet enjoyable.  Enough happening to keep from getting bored and not too much that I feel overwhelmed.  I have learned to say no to many things.  I know that I can do one or two things well at a time, but if things start piling up, I get stressed out.  Right now everything is going in a steady, easy flow and I am enjoying the days.

I had the grandboys for a weekend.  It was a fun weekend of playing, swimming, eating out and just being together.

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We went to Rural King and let the boys pick out some toys.  One picked a bag full of army soldiers and tanks.  The other picked a bag of Revolutionary war soldiers and their horses and cannons.

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Armies were set up on the living room floor.  Revolutionaries against modern military.

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Battles ensued.

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Strategizing where to put the soldiers and tanks and cannons.  I had to watch where I was walking with bare feet as those little soldiers were sharp when you stepped on them.  Ouch!

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Guess who I was watching as they played?  Pioneer Woman.  The boys seemed interested too.

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Especially when Ree’s sons were on the screen.

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I relaxed in my new pajamas I bought from Sam’s club.  They are really soft and comfortable.

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Time was spent climbing trees and picking crabapples to make “stew.”  I cooked the crabapples for them and after they cooled we put them under the bird feeders.  Something ate them.  We don’t know what.

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I spent a lot of time last week doing this.  We have been going through a dry spell.  Nothing like California is going through, but everything needed watering.

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My zinnia bed alongside the house is so pretty.  The butterflies and hummingbirds love the flowers.  Next year I plan to double its size.  Less grass to mow that way.

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Next to peonies, zinnias are my favorite flower.   So easy to grow and so many different colors.  Plus, you can collect their seeds and grow them again next year.

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We went off to the woods again.

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The for sale sign…..

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Was taken down.  We may have to put up a no trespassing sign as someone has cut down some trees in the past in this woods and we definitely do not want that happening.

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We walked down to the creek which is quite a steep walk and I saw this toadstool.

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It was huge and stood all alone in the woods.

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Once you are back in the woods, it is so quiet, you cannot hear anything but the birds in the trees.  We got down to the creek and as it was almost dry, we walked along it.  Lots of flagstones, perfect for paths and fireplaces, lay in the creek bed.  We may have to bring some up the hill one day.

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We had some excitement on our road.  A pedestrian was hit by a car and there were police cars all over and the lifeline helicopter came to pick up the person.

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A police car was across the road right by our house.  David was talking to the policeman about what had happened.  We never heard how that pedestrian turned out.  Hope he or she was all right.

Finally, I had a Beth Moore simulcast Bible Study at my house Saturday.  Several ladies joined me to watch.

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Such a great group of ladies and we enjoyed fun, fellowship, good food and Bible study.  It lasted all day and we laughed and talked and just enjoyed being together.

I am mentoring a senior girl for her senior class project.  She wanted to make quilts for the Riley Children’s hospital in Indianapolis.  We are busy making quilts to cover the baby incubators.  Then the parents can take a quilt home for their baby.  I will show you the quilts and write about the senior girl later.

Hope your days are equal part busy and restful.  Bye.

 

 

 

Windows, Chickens and Flowers, Oh, My

Been busy around the old house the past few days, or is it weeks?  I’m not sure, time is flying so fast.  I have to keep my shirttails tucked in to keep them from flying, time is going so fast. Did I say time is going fast?   In my Bible study this week I learned that time is not going, it’s coming.  There is something really big coming our way.  The Bible speaks of her time coming, his time coming, the time came.  I find that fascinating.   I don’t really worry about time.  We all have a certain amount of it on this earth and we should make the best of it and give God the glory and love one another.  That is really all we can do.  We cannot change the weather.  We cannot change time.  We really don’t have control of much of anything when you really think about it, but if you put it all in God’s hands, it will all work out for the good(to those who love Him.)

Whew, I didn’t mean to get all theological on you, but that’s how I am.  Things have been happening around here.  We called our ever faithful contractor to replace more windows.  This house has so many windows and they all have been in the house since about the fifties, I believe, so one by one we have been replacing them with brand new insulated, double paned windows  when we save up the money.  This time we replaced our big window in our dining room.  Our contractor said we saved the hardest window for almost last.  It had to be rebuilt, repainted and replaced.

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Here it is taken out.  Nice breeze today.

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We have a nice view.  Well, when the trucks and ladders aren’t there.

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Reframing it. These men are pros.  They have worked together for years and work like a well oiled machine.  They almost know what the other one is going to say before he says it.

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New windows at last!  I was a little afraid that by replacing these windows we would lose some of the old woodwork around it and change the look, but now that they are in, it looks just the same, except we don’t have those awful, old, ugly storm windows on them any longer.  They will be so much easier to clean.

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I couldn’t wait to get some curtains hung.  See my new ladder.  It’s mine.  I picked it out and I will be the one using it for painting walls.  It’s sturdy, not like our old wooden one that rocked when I climbed on it and swayed with each movement.   This one stands strong and firm and I love it.  Really.

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I am using lace curtains this Summer, but I have bought new insulated checked curtains for this Autumn and Winter.

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After the windows were in, I painted our dining room.  A soft grey.  Sometimes it looks cream colored and other times really grey depending on the light.  I like it.  I was getting tired of the yellow walls that I really loved when I painted them a few years ago.  I’m fickle like that.  David and I went to Hobby Lobby this morning because we(I) wanted to get some flowers to put in my chicken feeder that I received as a Christmas gift last year.

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Remember when I wrote about this surprise gift that appeared on our front porch?  I didn’t know what it was or who it was from.

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It was this really nice, antique chicken feeder.  I told my friend who gave it to me that I was going to design a room around it, and I have.  Here it is, Shannon.  Look what you made me do.

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I sent away for these chicken posters.  The flowers I found at Hobby Lobby had feathers in them!  How appropriate.  Now the feeder sits in all its glory.  I love how this turned out.  Hanging the pictures was fun(not.)  David measured and measured and measured again and one of the pictures kept looking lower than the other.  I measure things with my eye and kept telling him they were not level with each other.  He measured and measured and measured again and finally decided our lopsided old house was the problem so he let?! me eyeball the pictures and we finally got them almost level.  As a friend use to tell me, “You will never notice it on a galloping horse.”

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I love these pictures.

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He could be the husband of one of my barred rock hens.  Wish I could have a rooster.

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We rehung this picture our daughter gave us last Christmas.  Kind of goes with the theme of farm and chickens.

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I have been picking these the last couple of weeks.  My favorite flower.  The peony.

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I have tried to get a little of this in, but haven’t got much done on the doll quilts lately.  I am hand quilting them as I get them pieced.

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I saw this purse on a blog, I wish I could remember which one and got on Fat Quarter Shop and ordered the pattern.  The Abby Bag.  I hope I can find time to make it.  Of course, I will have to make my granddaughter, Abby, one some time.

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Just finished reading this for the second time.  I got this book either at an auction or an antique store.  It’s about a woman who was left behind at her family’s cabin in Alaska one winter when her husband couldn’t get back to get her.  She went through many trials and tribulations like being in a landslide and breaking her arm and hurting her leg right off the bat.  Besides that, she was expecting a baby and had to deal with that and give birth all by herself.  It is a true story and when I read it, I realized I don’t have it hard at all, although I would really love to live in Alaska.

Maybe hard times is what hones us and makes us stronger.  To live a life of ease and relaxation all the time would be a complete bore to me.  I like action and hard work and doing things myself even if they don’t always turn out so well.   Anyway, if you ever get to read this book, I think you would enjoy it.  It was also made into a movie.  I’d like to find it.  I saw it a long time ago.

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Just wanted to show you something my Sunday school children made last Sunday.  They did all the cutting out and gluing and putting on stickers and I brought home the squares and tied them all together and will take it back to show them next Sunday.  We should do as the words say, “Love one another.”  Bye.

 

Almost Spring

David and I made a trip to Petco and Rural King today.  I must say that Rural King is one of my very favorite stores, especially this time of year.  They are putting out all their garden decors, lawn fertilizers,  compost, seeds, and other paraphernalia that a gardener needs.   I was in seventh heaven.  I found some seeds that looked interesting, we bought bedding for the chooks and the dogs and we found some compost manure for the rhubarb.   Rhubarb is a heavy feeder and needs to be fertilized heavily to produce good plants.  I am looking forward to some fresh rhubarb pie unlike the rhubarb pie I baked the other day from frozen rhubarb we bought at Appleworks.

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It was a good, flaky crusted pie, but the rhubarb was cut into bigger pieces and didn’t smoosh down like my rhubarb does.  David liked it, though, and has eaten the whole pie himself, plus the little cinnamon rolls I made from the dough.

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David does have a sweet tooth(that is if they were his real teeth!)

But back to Rural King.  We went to get the chicken coop bedding and they had the bedding stacked so high we couldn’t reach the top.  David said we could play Jenga and hope the rest of the bags don’t come tumbling down on our heads.  We found a clerk who climbed up and got two bags for us.  Why do they do that?

Here are the seeds I found.

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Nasturtiums or as I like to call them Nasty Turtians.  Nasturtiums are edible although I have never eaten any.

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Cucumbers are a must.  David loves fresh from the garden cucumbers.  I could take them or leave them, but I like to make him happy.

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Pumpkins.  Last year we grew giant pumpkins, enough to give all the grandchildren one and have a few ourselves.  I’m hoping we will have good ones again this year.  The chickens have been fertilizing the garden all winter.

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We use to call this Indian corn, but the PC police don’t want us to use that any more so it’s called ornamental corn.  If I were an Indian, I would be proud to have it called Indian corn because it is so unique and pretty, but that’s just me.

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When I saw that I could grow pumpkins on a stick, well, I just had to have these seeds.  I am looking forward to seeing how these turn out.

Another thing I love about Spring coming is all the seed catalogs and Spring magazines that arrive in the mail.

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One of my favorite magazines.  We actually took a trip and stayed at a bed and breakfast that was featured in this magazine.  It was a really nice bed and breakfast, but David and I decided it wasn’t for us as the owners kept visiting with us and asking us to eat at tables with strangers who we had nothing in common with and besides we wanted to have some time to ourselves and the worst part is we were told what time to eat breakfast.  We don’t like to arrange our time around someone else’s schedule when we are on vacation.  Sometimes we don’t feel like eating at 8:45 or whenever we were told to eat.    We did love the geese that came to the pond right outside our bedroom window and the paths through meadows we walked while we were there.  I would recommend it to those who love bed and breakfasts.  We are not a schedule following couple while on vacation.

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One of my favorite catalogs.  We have purchased several things from this company to include wind spinners.  They have really nice wind spinners made of heavy duty metal.    I bought a clunker of a wind spinner from Rural King last year.  It doesn’t spin very well unless you have hurricane force winds.

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I have my eye on these curtains for the dining room.  We are replacing more windows this year in the dining room.  After we get them in, I plan to repaint the room, put up new curtains as we have had the same curtains in there for over twenty years and I have my eye on this rug.

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We shall see how it all comes together or if it will.  Plans are made to be broken or life gets in the way.   I love making plans though.

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I celebrated a birthday this last week.  David bought me an ice cream cake from the Dairy Queen.  I was so happy.  He said, “I didn’t know if you would like it or not.”  Me, not like ice cream and cake?  What was he thinking?  I have wanted one of these for years.  I told him this is exactly what I want every year from now on.  I still have a piece waiting for me in the freezer.  I almost hate to eat it because I will have to wait a whole year before I get another one!

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One of the catalogs I get is from Yankee Candle.  It’s really like a little present in the mail because several of the candles they show are scratch and sniff.  Look at this chocolate bunny candle.  How cute.

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Marshmallow chicks candle.  It’s a scratch and sniff.

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Bunny cake.  I am in love.

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Jelly bean candle.  Okay, this one is getting ordered.  It smells just like jelly beans.  How do they do that?  Get those scents in the candles?   If you come into my house, don’t be surprised to smell jelly beans soon.

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Yankee candle has so many cute things.  Good thing I have will power.   I don’t know where I would put anything else anyway.  I am not being paid to advertise Yankee Candle, I just love the company and its products.

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Wildseed Farms.  A company based out of Fredericksburg, Texas.  They sell seed by the pound.  As you can see, I have already ordered some seed from them.  Laura Bush self-seeding petunias.  I am going to give them a try this Summer.

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A pound of zinnia seeds.  Thousands of seeds that will go all over our property.  You really get your money’s worth buying seed this way.  This many seeds would probably cost a hundred dollars if you bought them in little packets.

I also bought an ounce of foxglove seeds.  Foxgloves are biennials so I may not see flowers this year, I don’t know.  Thousands of seeds in one ounce so I should have a few flowers from it.

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I planted a little mini garden in a broken coffee cup.  Grass seed and little birds and a bird feeder.  I am loving it as it makes me know that Spring and green growing things are coming soon.  Winter never lasts forever although sometimes it seems to.

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I have put out my Easter bunnies early this year so that I could enjoy them longer.  Easter is early this year.

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I love Easter.  It means so much more than bunnies and chickens at our house.  We celebrate the risen Savior, Jesus Christ on that day.   He died for everyone, you know.  Not just Christians.

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I have been studying First and Second Thessalonians in the Bible.  Paul wrote to this church about many things to include the rapture.  I love these two books and how they deal with sexual purity and how important it is for everyone.   After all, our bodies are our temples and if God indwells within us, we should keep our bodies pure from sexual sin.  I don’t think the world looks at it the same way, but it makes sense to me.    There is no mincing words about it from Paul, however.  Paul, who persecuted the early Christians became a different man once confronted with Jesus Christ.  From that day forward he was a follower and told many thousands about the hope that is in Jesus Christ.  I believe as Paul did, that Jesus is the son of God, came to earth to preach, teach and heal, died on the cross for everyone’s sins, took them upon himself.  He rose the third day.  Thousands saw him and after forty days he went to heaven where he is waiting for his father’s cue to come gather His church together in the clouds where we will live eternally with Him in heaven.  I truly believe this with all my heart, soul and body.  It makes much more sense to me than just living a few years on this planet and dying and that’s all.  Life means much more than that and we all have spirits that have to go someplace.

I didn’t mean for this to be a theology lesson.  It’s just who I am and what makes me who I am.

 

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This is the next quilt I will be hand quilting.  I love the old fashioned look of it.

I hope you are anticipating Spring as much as I am.  When you live in a climate that changes every season, you look forward to the warmth of Spring after a cold, snowy Winter.  If you live in a constantly warm climate, how wonderful for you.  You didn’t have to scrape ice off your wind shield or slip and slide on icy walkways.  Here’s to warm, wonderful Spring.  Bye.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Catching My Breath

We took down the Christmas tree and other decorations today and, surprisingly, I didn’t feel sad about doing it.  I feel like I have been on a roller coaster for the last three months and I look forward to one month of doing as little as possible.  I won’t have to clean for company, cook big meals, hunt for gifts, or do any of the other things that come with the holidays.  Our holidays seem to start at Halloween and don’t finish until a week after Christmas.  I love it all, but I am ready for some slow down time.   It was nice getting the house back into order and the sun is shining brightly in the window where the tree once stood.

Soon I am hoping to start a Bible study if I can get a few women who would like to join me.  If not, I will study by myself.  I am either going to do Beth Moore’s Daniel study which I have done before or her 1st and 2nd Thessalonians  study.  I have done almost all of Beth Moore’s Bible studies and learned so much, plus they are very enjoyable and fun too.

I have two quilts I plan to start quilting, one by hand and one on the sewing machine.  I also have two that I plan to piece.  There is a shop hop in February where I will collect more fabric for these two quilts.  If you don’t know what a shop hop is, it is several quilt shops who get together and have  prizes and treats for the quilters who shop at their businesses on the special days.  They usually also have quilt block kits which you can buy and if you buy them all you have enough for a quilt.  I usually don’t do this as I like to pick out my own material and patterns.  They sell a shop hop pass which puts you in the running for prizes at each store.  One year I won $50 worth of fabric which was really nice for me as I don’t have enough fabric.  Ha!

This week I had a friend and her two daughters over to learn how to piece a quilt block.  They made pot holders.  It was fun to watch them as they learned some of the basics of quilting.  I was rather a work horse and made them rip out pieces that were not quite straight, but I knew they would not be happy with the finished result unless they did so.  I know I have had to rip out a lot while piecing especially when I was first learning how to quilt. Anyway, they almost completed their pot holders, including quilting them on the machine and adding binding.  I took pictures and will try to show them on my next post.  I think they were happy with their handy work.  I know I was proud of them and how much they accomplished.

Now I am enjoying just sitting here watching the snow blow off the garage roof.  It is frigidly cold here with the wind blowing steadily.  Have to wrap up including your nose when you go outside unless you want frostbite. If you live in a warm climate and are reading this, I envy you, just a little right now.   It is sunny which makes for a beautiful day, but even the chickens are staying inside  and they hardly ever do that.  Belle, Bonnie and Molly Marshmallow sleep warmly in my shop when it is this cold.  They are nice company when I am working out there.

Hope wherever you are you are warm and cozy and looking forward to this brand new year.  Bye.

 

Juggling

Right now I feel like a juggler, juggling several different things at once.  And it’s all my fault.  No one makes me do these things.

I am a creative person loving to sew, quilt, knit, embroider and do just about any handwork.  My problem is I love to start something, but I don’t always get it done.  Right now I can say  I have at least ten quilts that need to be completed.  Probably more.  One I just have a very little bit of quilting to do and it just sits there waiting on me.  Making me feel guilty.

Then there is the knitting.  I just started knitting after years of not knitting a thing.  Suddenly I am in love with yarn and the working with the two needles row upon row as a hat or a scarf takes shape.  This week I have made three children’s hats and a scarf.   I want to start another hat.  I’m thinking these hats would be nice to put in Christmas boxes for Samaritan’s Purse. I only knit at night right before I go to bed, but the problem is I don’t want to go to bed until I get a hat done.  I can knit one in an evening.  They’re small.

Then I decided I needed to make a couple of new ironing board covers.  That entails making almost a twin size quilt and cutting it down to size to fit the ironing board.  I almost have one done.  I don’t waste any time when I get an idea in my head.

Then I went to a fabric store last week with some friends and got an armload of felts and decided I needed to make needle holders right away.  Today I cut out two, plus a scissor holder.  They will be so cute, I think, if I get them done. Lots of handwork on these.  I will show them to you when I get them finished.  They are not the hand needle holders I made last week and showed you.    I bet you are wondering what I am going to do with all these needle holders.  I have a plan.

Now I am on a roll and want to get a Christmas quilt completed before gardening time gets here.  I almost have the quilt top finished.

Today it suddenly hit me I have way too many things going at once and need to finish a few and tidy things up a bit before Spring.  Plus I have been neglecting the pups and the chicks.  They demand my attention and I have given them very little in the past couple of weeks.  And I need to get to the beauty shop and get my hair cut or it is going to be to my waist before I know it.  Plus my “true” color is showing and I can’t have that.  But every time I think I will make an appointment,  we get another big snow and I don’t want to get out in it.

I need to plant tomatoes now.  Before we know it, we will be in garden planting season and last year my tomatoes were late getting out.  I had cherry tomatoes clear up to frost last year, but so many of them were wasted that way so this year I hope to get them out earlier.  The chooks really cleaned out the old garden and even flattened the compost pile so I won’t have much cleaning up of the garden before we till it.  I am amazed what good little dirt turners they are.  They have scratched up every inch of the garden area.  That is why you don’t let chickens into your garden when something is growing there.

I am sounding rather hyper here, aren’t I?  I said a while ago I have never been bored.  Now I see why.  I am where I think a boring day might be nice.  A long day of nothing. Maybe just me, a hot bath and a good book.  Sounds pretty wonderful.    But that isn’t going to happen for a while. Next week I start a new Bible study for six weeks.  Since it is going to be at my house this time I am going to have to do some cleaning.  And some baking.

Our Sunday school class is going to a dinner theater and I am so excited about that.  I love plays and musicals and things like that.  This is a special one for Valentine’s Day.

My chooks are doing well in this bitter, cold weather.  It doesn’t seem to affect them much.  We do have a heat lamp on in the sub zero temps.  They are still  laying from three to five eggs a day. I still have to give eggs away because we cannot eat them fast enough.   I notice someone is molting because I see a lot of loose feathers when I clean their coop. And it sure isn’t me!

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Finished my granddaughter’s book.  I find myself excited about reading the next one to see what is going to happen next to her main characters.  She is a really good writer.  As she matures I see her writing more and more and getting the public’s attention.  Her book is geared toward middle school aged children, but she used some big words I had to look up.

Another snow is expected this weekend.  Feed the birds.  They can’t find food under the snow.  I have the fattest birds and squirrels around because they are always feasting.  The squirrels just look at me when I go out to fill the feeder and just keep on munching.  I guess by now they know I don’t eat squirrel.

Here’s to sewing, quilting, knitting, reading and never being bored.  Bye.

Finishing My Last Blog

My computer went all whacko on me last night and refused to let me post anymore pictures.  I think it was tired. So I will try to finish what I began yesterday.  What was I talking about??? Oh, yes, traditions.

One of my favorite traditions on New Year’s Day is to put up new calendars.  I didn’t get it done yesterday, but they are all up today.

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I didn’t even know there was a Susan Branch until a year or two ago.  She is an author who hand writes all her books and water colors each page.  They are beautiful.  She includes quotes and recipes and stories about her growing up which is very like how I grew up.  Since we both grew up in about the same era, that is natural.  She also produces a calendar each year and last year was the first year I bought one.

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How can you not like a calendar which has on one of the dates in January to visit your local fabric store today?  I visited one a little early already, but this made me smile.

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Each calendar page is a work of art and very interesting to read.  There are probably a few left out there, so run to your local calendar store and get this calendar.

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I have to have a labrador retriever calendar which I put in my downstairs bathroom.  This one has all puppies which really makes me want to get that lab pup this year.

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I have been buying Lang calendars for years.  This one was a gift and will hang in my dining room.  This is the one on which I write all the birthdays and anniversaries in our family.

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This Lang calendar will hang in my shop.  I love all the old timey pictures in it.  Makes me wish I had lived in those simpler times.  Especially on a farm.  With a horse.

Did you make any new year’s resolutions this year?  I quit doing that long ago. Too much pressure.  I have a lot of plans and things I would like to do this year.

I want to spend as much time as possible with my children and grandchildren.

I want to learn to play my ukelele and not be afraid to play it in front of people.

I want to make as many quilts as I can, especially the ones that will be gifts.

I want to learn how to water color like Susan Branch.  She started water colors later in her life.  She didn’t even know she had that talent until she just started one day.  Isn’t that like a lot of us?  We are afraid to start something new because we are afraid we won’t be any good at it.  So what.  At least you tried.  There are so many things we can learn if we just set our minds to it.

I want to be a good witness for Jesus Christ.  I have given this year and my family to Him and pray He will do His will in them.

I want to stay connected to old friends and family members I don’t see very often.

I want to keep raising chickens and maybe adding a few more to my little flock.

I want that lab puppy.

I want to see my grandson play his lacrosse game in Traverse City, Michigan where David and I honeymooned many years ago.  There is a road in Traverse City named after my husband’s family because only his family lived on it at one time.  I don’t know if any of his family is still living on it, but we will probably check if we get up there.

I want to see my granddaughter play her ukelele we gave her on her praise team at her school.

I want to get to Cincinnati and Chicago for personal reasons.  I want David’s brother and sister-in-law to bring their grandchildren to visit us and meet our grandchildren.

I want our new porch to be built this year as the old one is pulling away from the house and playing havoc with the walls in our living room.

I want to write more blogs to include stories about my growing up on an Indiana farm in the fifies.

I want to have Bible studies in my home and have fellowship with other Christian women.

I want to walk more, eat less, lift weights more and just take better care of my body.  Notice this is the last thing I put on my list.  Hmmmmm.

Oh, I could add a few hundred more things I would like to do this year, but I think these will keep me busy for a while.  Hope your new year is productive and creative.  Bye.

 

 

Where Am I?

  What has happened to the time?  Where am I?  Is it Summer still or is it Autumn?  I don’t know.  I just wrote about Spring and planting the garden and enjoying the warm weather and now I am so looking forward to cooler temperatures, falling leaves and wearing sweaters, sitting by campfires and drinking hot chocolate. 

  The chicks were tiny little balls of fluff only yesterday and now they are laying an egg every day.  A dozen every two days.   One hundred and eighty eggs a month.   I can’t use them fast enough.  The dogs get one in their dog food every other day.  I boil them, fry them, scramble them, make egg salad, bake cakes and cookies and still they keep coming.  The hens are like little laying machines now and the eggs are getting bigger.  The thrill is still there, though, every time I go out to the coop and find the pretty brown eggs, some still warm from the hens’ bodies. 

  We got an automatic chicken coop door opener today.  We are hoping we can go away once in a while and not have to worry whether the chooks are able to get out during the day and are safely shut in at night.  The company that we ordered from included a free gospel of John in the box.  Was a very nice thing to find.   The company is called Fleming Outdoor if you are interested.

  I am still getting tomatoes.  The cucumbers finally stopped producing, thank goodness.  We got hundred of cucumbers this year.  I have Roma tomatoes just coming on and one cherry tomato plant that is starting to produce.  I love this time of year.  We can eat from the garden and the chooks.  We haven’t gone to the grocery as much lately for some reason.  David said the other day we hadn’t made a big grocery store run for some time.  Don’t know why.  We seem to be eating pretty well.  

  I am sewing on Tuesdays with a friend.  I need to get into another Bible study soon, but I just haven’t felt like studying for a while.  I have taken Bible studies for years and needed to take a break, but I have one in mind I am planning to do.  The new Beth Moore.

  I also need to get into my walking again.  I kind of slowed down when it got so hot and have had a hard time getting myself motivated to get back to my five miles a day.  I’m hoping with the cooler weather coming, I will start again.  I really love walking, but find the first mile is the hardest.  After I can get past that one, I feel like I could walk for hours.  I also need to find a new walking place as where I walk there are so many trucks, trains and automobiles.  Sounds like the name of a movie.  I read blogs where they have beautiful hills and valleys and fields and quiet roads on which to walk and wish I lived in such an area.  I guess I could drive somewhere to walk, but somehow for me that defeats the whole purpose of walking.  When we go on vacation to North Carolina, I am hoping we find a lot of nice walking areas like we did when we went to Alaska.  I walked to Alaska I always say, because every day we found a park or safe area for me to walk and I would walk my five miles.  I even walked five miles a day on the boat going to Alaska.

   I need to get new glasses, but am too lazy to go to the eye doctor.  I hate going to any doctor. Both my dentist and my family doctor are wonderful, don’t get me wrong.  I have a doctor’s appointment this week for a check-up and a dentist appointment the week after.  I don’t know why it spoils my whole day when I have to go have anything done with or for my body to include the hair dresser.  I am sort of afraid what my beautician is going to say to me when she sees my red hair.  I refreshed the color yesterday and still love it.    Anyway,  I feel so out of control in a doctor’s office because I am afraid he will find something wrong which would mean tests and more time spent in medical offices.  I think my fear comes from when I was a little girl and my older sister would tease me about the big, long needles the doctor was going to use on me.  She use to scare me to death.  I grew up in the time when you had to get multiple polio shots and it seemed to me that we were always going to Dr. Barton’s office to get yet another polio shot.  Then I developed a very stiff neck and my parents were afraid I had gotten polio.  Thankfully, it wasn’t, but polio was scary back then.

  I feel like I am in a kind of limbo right now between seasons and what I want to do.  I need a goal so I am going to think of one and put it up on this blog so that I will have to meet the goal.  It will probably be about walking distances or something like that.  Or maybe I will try to finish a quilt a week.  I have so many quilt tops that need to be quilted and bound.  Or maybe I could pick an author and try to read all his or her books.  Right now I am reading a really good Jodi Piccoult book.  I have read some others of hers and liked them.  I would like to find a book with about a thousand pages. The book I read about Deitrich Bonhoeffer had over a thousand pages and I loved every one of them.  It was such an inspiring book, but sad also. 

  I am finished with American television for the most part.  There are very few shows I like and the reality shows just turn me off.  We have Netflix and have been watching British dramas and comedies and those people know how to write a good story.  We are watching “Doc Martin” right now about a surgeon who becomes sick at the sight of blood and goes to a small British town as a GP.  He is rather gruff and abrupt with his patients, but they don’t seem to mind.  I laugh out loud at some of the things that happen to him.  The townspeople are rather quirky and I like quirky people. 

  Have I rambled on long enough?  I felt like I should come here before people decided I had given up blogging.  I haven’t.  I have so many things I want to blog about, but it takes time to upload the pictures and then write the blog and I have been kind of busy.   I have children’s stories I have written I went to put on here.  Oh, no, I am not finished blogging.  I have this need to write whether anyone reads it or not.  I am hoping I am making a kind of diary for my children so they will know their mother a little better. 

  Here’s to rambling on and on and people kind enough to read it.  Bye.

 

What’s Happening at the Craig House

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April Showers brought……

 

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May flowers.  We left the Christmas lights up in this crabapple tree and turn them on at night and it looks so pretty.

 

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Bonnie has decided it is her lot to watch over the chickens.  She has formed a place by the pen where she lays continuously and watches them.  She is absolutely mesmerized.

 

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I baked cinnamon rolls for my ladies Bible study brunch.  We finished up the study of James yesterday. Really loved this study.

 

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I have been nursing a chicken who has a paralyzed leg.  She is healthy otherwise.  Alert, clear eyed and very strong.  She wants to walk so badly, but that foot will not hold her.  I will care for her as long as she is so healthy.  She’s becoming my baby and cheeps at me when I come around.  Her name is Freedom because she is the one who looked like an eagle when she was younger.

 

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Years ago we bought a patio door at the state fair.  It’s been a good door, but it is beginning to show its age.  I don’t know if you can see the screen, but is has been patched for years.  When we got Bonnie as a pup, we replaced the screen because there  was a hole in it.  Because at the time Bonnie was chewing everything in sight, she immediately tore a hole in the new screen and David said he was not replacing it again so he patched it.  Now we are going to have it replaced with a new screen which we hope Bonnie won’t chew.

 

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This is the new door.  Isn’t it pretty?  We are also replacing all the windows in this old house two or three windows at a time.

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This requires climbing up very tall ladders and balancing on them while taking out the old windows.  David is not allowed to do this.  He falls off ladders too often.

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I don’t even feel comfortable seeing David leaning out the window.

 

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I like how open it looks right now.  Unfortunately, I would not want birds nesting in my bedroom so we need windows here.

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Wish we had this setup.  This guy is like a monkey running up and down the ladders and getting onto this thing.  He must not be afraid of heights.  We asked him to replace some spotlights on the corner of the roof and he did.

 

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I will leave you with a picture of Jemima and Penninah having lunch. Bye.