Sunday, July 29, 2007

Links #2


The power of a mother and the amazing influence we have shows in this true story, now one of my favorites: Pancakes

Loving your children: The most meaningful matter of motherhood

You may feel lied to after reading these amazing statistics: Get the Government Out of Sex Ed

Great story of "unplanned adoption": Life is Better Than We Planned

Destroying a Lineage: Choose Life

Monday, July 23, 2007

Clothed in Purple


Yesterday, while traveling in the car, I embroidered this handkerchief my mother made this week. Isn't it adorable? "Grandma", as she's called by everyone around (I'm "Nana"), asked me to add something purple to the delicate little hankie in order for it to go with this:


Isn't this just too charming?! A dress, purse, and hankie -- all matching sweetness to match the young lady who will be the receipient of this love gift.

And Grandma went shopping today looking for fabric for her other great-granddaughter! Didn't find anything today (our town has very limited options), but she's on the look-out! As one who has been on the receiving end of many of her creations, I can't wait to see the next one!

Saturday, July 14, 2007

Friday, July 13, 2007

Tableau, Arrangement, Display, Vignette

Whatever you want to call it, I made one in a corner of my bathroom. I should have taken a "before picture". This little brown cupboard, which holds various bathroom supplies, was home to a stack of magazines, a basket with an extra roll of toilet paper, and a large milk glass banana bowl filled with white towels. Not really ugly, but not aesthetically pleasing, either.

I covered it with a fine, very soft (read: old) linen tablecloth. Gabe gave me the bowl and pitcher for Mother's Day. I thought it was very pretty, but I thought, "Oh, I don't have anything of that color. Where am I going to put it?" Since then, it has been sitting on my bathroom counter between the sinks and below the window. It looked fine there. I bought the bottle inscripted with "Dr. Miles Medical Co." in an antiques store in Wisconsin while visiting Jenee. I thought it would match the new green of my kitchen. It didn't. I think the little dish was given to me with a candle. The large shells came from Mexico. Gabe brought them home from one of his speaking trips. They were given to him by a man who sells them for a living, I think. They were all sandy and the insides a little yucky still. I washed them in the dishwasher! Isn't that a pretty pink? I think some of the small shells came from Israel (the country, not the grandson). And the towel was a lone towel of that color in the back of my towel cupboard. It all coordinates very well with the colors I already have in there, though I am due for a complete bathroom re-do!

Funny how wrong I was. I have a *bunch* of stuff in that color! At least enough to make a pretty tableau!

Thursday, July 12, 2007

Images From My Birthday

I really love sunflowers. Not to decorate with, but the real thing. Joel and Sarah-Kate brought me some as a treat the night before to "start off" my birthday.

I received such thoughtful gifts from family -- both home and church. Thank you, everyone!

Gabe took me to a new restaurant, "The Artisan" that evening. Look at us all "matchy"! (And don't look at all those crooked pictures! I've got to fix that!)

After dinner, the family came over for presents and cake. How about this for a birthday dessert? It is basically a trifle made with chocolate cake, whipped topping, chocolate mousse, and toffee bits. Yummy! Thank you, Sarah!

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

What Color Am I?

It's my birthday, today, so I'm taking some time to just blog surf in the middle of the day without any guilt. I came across this quiz. Doesn't really surprise me. Lavender is close to violet, right? The first sentence doesn't seem descriptive of me, but the rest certainly does.

VIOLET

You surround yourself with art and music and are constantly driven to express yourself. You often daydream. You prefer honesty in your relationships and believe strongly in your personal morals.

Find out your color at QuizMeme.com!

Monday, July 9, 2007

Our Fourth

Yes, I know I'm a few days late with this post! *smile*

We had a bit of a different celebration this year. Where last year we enjoyed the day with lots of celebrants and lots of activity, this year was a much quieter day. Only the Abdelaziz and Correa families joined us. It was a very hot day, so no one even opted for swimming! Josh and Joel gave horseshoes a go, but soon came in dripping in sweat. So, we all learned from them and chose to stay inside and do not much more than eat and visit. We had a superb table set before us with a choice of pulled pork or grilled tri-tip sandwiches, corn-on-the-cob, fruit salad, potato salad, chips and salsa, and raspberry lemonade. We had ice cream cones for dessert.

After our late lunch, the children, Papa, and Uncle Josh all went for their usual holiday nap.

As evening approached, we moved our visiting and eating to the park where we waited for a magnificent display of fireworks set to music in tribute to the American soldier.

The children did their best to stay cool with popsicles and a spray bottle filled with cold water.

We "snacked" on chocolate chip cookies, watermelon, honey-mustard pretzels, trail mix, rice crispy treats, and lots of water.


It finally got dark enough! Here come the fireworks!

Saturday, July 7, 2007

Lost Friends

I am saddened. I think I’ve lost two friends. Just so happens to have happened close enough in time to frustrate me. In my contemplation of this matter, I feel there are two main reasons – two reasons that may manifest in slightly different ways, but here they are for your consideration.

1. My name seems to be synonymous with the name of our church – something I do consider an honor. However, my friends, in their decision to leave this congregation, find they must also leave me.

Leaving a church………….sounds so painful to me.

There used to be protocol for leaving a church body. Probably because people did it so rarely. A family would leave their church reluctantly and only because of a move or a call from God. They would obtain a letter of recommendation from their “old” pastor to be given to their “new” pastor. The old pastor would often call ahead and help them to find a new congregation with which to worship. Pastors and members would stick it through, no matter the hardships. They had faith that all would come out on the other side better and closer to God.

Now-a-days, people skip from church to church as easily as finding a new restaurant to have Sunday lunch. They leave for as many excuses as there are people. I have noticed a trend, though. A trend that is just as easily seen in broken marriages.

Have you ever noticed that after a divorce, a woman will suddenly decide that she needs to “remake” herself? She will join a gym, lose weight, get a new hair-do, update her wardrobe, redecorate her house, find new friends, basically remake herself. She then says she is so much happier. That she has found herself. And that she likes her new self so much better than the old married self. She considers her divorce a good thing. I wonder, though, what would have happened if she would have put forth as much effort before the divorce. If she would have “found” herself and become happy while she was still married, would her husband still have lost interest in her?

Over and over again, when folks decide to leave a church, it is because of a hunger inside. They may or may not understand this hunger. But many times they will confess that no, they have not been reading the Word or spending any decent amount of time with the Lord. A couple will not have been praying together. They will have been “so busy”, “so sick”, “so tired” that they have not been fellowshipping with the saints much at all. In this time of discontent, they make a decision to try another church. Maybe this new church will feed their hunger. They decide to divorce. After they have left, they often decide they need a fresh start. Christian resolutions usually start with reading their Bible more and spending more time in prayer. Through the process of “remaking” themselves, they become happier and more content. They will then, most often, give the credit to changing churches. I submit that if they would have put forth as much effort getting their daily lives more in line with what Christ has in mind for them, they would have found their first church a wonderful haven of rest – one that they would see no reason for leaving.

2. I am not loved for who I am, but abandoned because of what I am not.

If I am not careful, this can really bother me. But, age and the wisdom that comes from it, have taught me that this isn’t a “place” for me to stop long. I am to be what God has called me to be. I am learning every day what that really means and my journey will take a lifetime. When God improves me, it is such a blessing and joy – sometimes uncomfortable, but always fruitful. When I let others try to improve me, it cause strife – within and without.

Unfortunately, I cannot be everyone’s best friend. Sometimes, depending on your point of view, I may not even be a good friend. But, I have prayed and interceded for my friends. I have fought the enemy over my friends. I have stood strong for their marriages. I have prayed for their children. Seeing them has most often brought a smile to my face.

I really am so sorry that they have left our fold.

I will miss them.
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