Friday, October 31, 2008

Friendship Award

I am so blessed! Serena over at And By the Way . . . . . . presented me with this Friendsip Award. Why is this such a blessing? Because, in case you didn't know, Serena is married to my son. And this is what she said when awarding me, "BUT, I DO HAVE ONE PERSON, who should have gotten the award a long time ago......Mom at Daffodil Dreams : she has been a true friend, even listening to me whine and cry about her own son!"

Serena is truly one of my very best friends and my daughter. Thank you, Serena, for the award.

So, I am supposed to answer the following questions and then pass on the love to five other bloggy buddies.

1. Do you have the same friends since childhood?

No. I think that's sad, but I don't.

2. What do you value most about your friends?

Trust. I want to trust my friends. I want to know that they will always have my back. And I want them to know I will always have theirs.

3. Are your friends your sounding boards?

I'd like them to be. (I think that is because I like to talk out my problems and my decisions.)

The best answer, I think, is Daja's (another daughter) whom Serena quoted. "Some are. You know different friends fill different needs. Some are coffee buddies, some are casual acquaintances, some share history, some are safe places to fall."

4. What is your favorite activity to share with your friends?

Visiting, that is talking. Of course.

Now, don't hate me, but I can't pick anyone today to pass this on to. I'm running out of blogging time right now. I need to be running out the door! So, hopefully I will be back here soon!

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Free Blog Headers and a Giveaway!

How would you like a brand new FREE blog header made just for you? Then head on over to April Showers, where April will design a unique header with YOU in mind! Yep, it's right there in her sidebar, left hand side. But, hurry! Offer is only good during October!

And while you are there, enter her giveaway! She's giving away three prizes:

1. A custom 2009 calendar.

2. A $25 gift certificate to

3. A total blog makeover.

Are those great prizes, or what?

Deadline for the giveaway is this Thursday, October 30. So, like I said, hurry!

Monday, October 27, 2008

I've Been Tagged!

I have been tagged for a meme by Daja at in other words... .

Okay, here goes. It may take me all day to finish this!

1. I hate getting ready for the day. I would rather just start my day. I'm jealous of my husband who can get up 20 minutes before he has to be out the door. (This point explains why I am still sitting here in my pajamas!)

2. I love autumn decorations! However, I put them out slowly over the course of three months. I start in September with all the generic fall stuff -- leaves, candles, tablecloths and runners, that sort of thing. In October, I add all the pumpkins -- both real and fake. Then, of course, in November out comes all the Thanksgiving-themed decor. So, I get to tweak the arrangement of the decorations all autumn long. I love it!

By the way, I'm dressed now.

3. I don't really like talking on the phone. I hate calling anyone. I'm afraid I'm interrupting and disturbing.

4. I hate peas and beans. All legumes in general, unless they are raw.

5. I (I should say "we", but this is supposed to be about me.) recently fell in love with spray paint. Oh, what doors to creativity it opens!

6. I pile papers. Yep. Paper is the bane of my life. I am always trying to rise above, but paper just keeps flowing into my life. I do have it relegated to one room -- my office. And I do know (pretty much, anyway) what is actually in the piles. But, my (forever) goal is to have a clear desk. I would love to sit in my office and be able to look around and SMILE!

7. I love Southern Gospel music. Yes, the old-fashioned campmeeting kind.

I actually finished this in one day!

So, I tag:

1. Laura at Decor to Adore. A place to be inspired AND learn.

2. Dancing Among Infinite Love, Yahweh's. She follows my blog! The only one so far that isn't somehow related to me!

3. Bonnie at Calamity Jane's Cottage. She makes and sells some wonderful things -- including my Thanksgiving apron!

4. Leona at OUT of my brain. A real life friend. Her boys are gems!

5. Donna at Rambling in LaGrange. I've known Donna for about eleven years. But only online. She is a woman after God's own heart.

6. Suzanne at Pink Roses. Loveliness personified.

7. Karin at Yesterday, Today, Forever -. My new favorite poet. She's all about Jesus.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

My, Oh My, Oh My!

Why didn't this surprise me?

No, I'm not a fan of Howard Stern, but I just had to share!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Don't Let Them Fool You!

There is a new commercial featuring liberal Democrat Jack O’Connell, the California Superintendent of Public Instruction, designed to trick voters into thinking that gay marriage won’t be taught in California public schools. The No on 8 campaign realizes that this is their Achilles heel, and they are going to say and do whatever they need to in order to confuse and trick voters.

In the ad, O’Connell slyly but shamelessly misrepresents the law, saying that California does not “require” that anything about marriage be taught in public schools. What he doesn’t say is that his own Department of Education reports that 96% of schools DO TEACH the courses that include marriage. The Supreme Court’s legalization of gay marriage unquestionably means that young children will be exposed to gay marriage in school, just as they are in Massachusetts.

When the “No on 8” ads say that teachers will not teach homosexuality to kindergartners or children in other grades, remember that it was the California Teacher’s Union that gave $1,250,000 to “No on 8” — taking a stand against traditional, natural marriage — and in support of same sex marriage. See the article here.

And when they say that teachers will not teach homosexuality, note the “California Association of Teachers of English” (CATE) program (page 5), for their 50th Annual Convention, offers “Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender” instruction to help teachers “explore various approaches to incorporating GLBT units into the traditional curriculum.” See their exact words in the brochure here (go to "Program Strands").

Don't let them fool you!

For my other posts regarding the Marriage Protection Act, please go here and here.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Our Annual Harvest Trek to Avila Barn

Avila Valley Barn is one of our favorite autumn outings. They sell local fresh produce; freshly baked scones, pies, muffins, and bread; homemade ice cream and candy; roasted corn on the cob; ice-cold apple cider with a squeeze of lime; and gift items galore. There are also hayrides, hay mazes, and farm animals to pet and feed. A truly fun old-fashioned family outing.

Papa and Diego feeding the ponies.

Three of the four Correas.

Isn't he cute? I know his eye "makeup" don't look manly,

but.......he is cute!

Diego isn't quite sure what to do with all that hay.

Look closely and you can see that he does think
falling into a pile of hay is fun!

The tractor and trailer coming back to give us our turn

to take a ride to the pumpkin patch.

Our turn!

Leaving Mommy and Donovan behind.

I like this picture with the mommies and their babies in slings and wraps.

Pumpkins almost as far as you can see!

After we left the Barn, we went on to Arroyo Grande. I wanted to visit the Susan Branch store there. It has been one of my favorite places and I needed a bit of inspiration. Can you imagine how dismayed Sarah and I were when we got there and it had disappeared? We asked next door at another favorite little store and found out that it had closed down about a month ago! I'm going to miss it!

So, instead we had fun in another way! As we walked by this cute alley, I thought it would make a pretty picture. Of course, Sarah and Diego wanted in the picture.....

Sarah proving she's still got it!

Monday, October 20, 2008

Myths and Facts about Proposition 8

Read Part 1 of the series on The Marriage Protection Act in California here.

MYTH: Proposition 8 enshrines discrimination in our Constitution.

FACT: Proposition 8 does not discriminate against gays; it simply restores the meaning of marriage and protects it as an essential institution that has benefited mankind since the beginning of time. Every culture in the world understands that marriage is between a man and a woman. Californians from all walks of life and ethnic backgrounds, whether religious or not, agree that marriage is between a man and a woman.

Proposition 8 does not take away any rights from gay and lesbian domestic partners. Gays and lesbians in California can already enjoy all the legal rights and benefits of marriage. The California Family Code says, “domestic partners shall have all the rights, protections and benefits” of married spouses. There are NO exceptions to this. Proposition 8 will not change that.

MYTH: Allowing gay couples to legally marry does not affect anyone else.

FACT: The narrow decision of the State Supreme Court effectively renders all civil marriage meaningless and will result in tremendous confusion for children. The state Education Code (§51890) requires that teachers instruct children as young as kindergartners about marriage. If the gay marriage ruling becomes permanent, teachers will have little choice but to teach young children there is no difference between gay marriage and traditional marriage.

We should not accept a court decision that results in public school teachers teaching our kids that gay marriage is acceptable. That is an issue for parents to discuss with their children according to their own values and beliefs. It should not be forced on us against our will.

MYTH: This proposition is the work of right wing radicals and extremists to attack the rights of gays.

Proposition 8 is supported by a broad range of organizations and individuals, including faith leaders representing virtually every faith in California – and those who subscribe to no faith at all. People from every walk of life believe that marriage is between a man and a woman. Over 1.1 million Californians signed the petitions to put Proposition 8 on the ballot.

If gay marriage advocates want to change the definition of marriage, they should have to put a ballot measure before the voters to do so. This has never happened. Instead, they have gone behind the backs of voters and convinced four activist judges in San Francisco to redefine marriage for all of society. That is the wrong approach.

Proposition 8 does not interfere with gays living the lifestyle they choose. However, while gays can live as they want, they should not have the right to redefine marriage for the rest of society.

MYTH: The majority of the State Supreme Court said that gay marriage is a “right”, so the rest of us should leave the issue alone.

Ultimately, the legal meaning of marriage is up to the people to decide. Four judges on the Supreme Court declared that gay marriage is a “right” because the traditional definition of marriage did not expressly appear in the state Constitution itself. Proposition 8 overturns the court’s flawed decision by amending the state Constitution to include the common-sense definition of marriage that was previously approved by over 61% of the voters (Proposition 22, enacted in 2000, “Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California”).

Vote Yes
on Proposition 8!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

The Test

Never the first to be picked on a team ~
I just wasn’t great at games with a ball ~
But if they needed one as a last resort,
It was then on me they would call.

Now this has followed me all of my life,
And some would feel sorry or pity me.
But I made up my mind a long time ago,
To be the best pinch hitter there ever would be.

I promised my Lord with sincere attitude,
“We can’t all be part of the in-crowd I see,
But if someone needs me, yet I’m not their first choice,
Help me do my best, and serve willingly.

“If I’m not even last on anyone’s list
Rejected by some, not thought of at all,
That is ok. But should they ever have need
Let me not turn them away; but gladly offer my all.

Great treasures, as silver or gold, have I none!
But such as I have, a word of praise or persistent prayer,
A listening ear, willing hands, a loving heart,
If someone needs those, please let me volunteer.

If someone should ever have need of my gifts
I won’t say no, and I’ll give my heart’s best.
Yes, I pray it is Christ’s love that they would see!
‘Cause that’s when my faith will be put to the test.

Used by permission.

Please visit Karen at Yesterday, Today, Forever for more of her wonderful thoughts.

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Reluctant Entertainer Giveaway!

Sandy, over at 4 Reluctant Entertainers, is having a Fall Giveaway in celebration of her 2nd blogiversary! Look at all the fun stuff she is giving away!

All you need to do to enter is leave a comment over there answering this:
What do you look for in hospitality/entertainment publications? (Magazines or books.) Great photos? Recipes? Particular lifestyle helps? Organizational tips? What about real life stories that inspire you?
The winner will be announced on Monday!

Friday, October 17, 2008

My Mother's Hutch

First of all, I want to apologize for two things. One, the quality of the pictures in this post. I just could not get the lighting right that day! Even though I took a bazillion pictures. Two, I forgot to take a before picture!

When my brother was in the Air Force and stationed in Italy many years ago, he shipped this huge (and heavy!) antique hutch to my mother. It really is a pretty cool piece of furniture. It has a pull-out cutting board, that I am assuming was once inlaid with marble. It was not just a decorative piece; it was a working part of someone's kitchen many, many years ago.

It's been a little over twelve years that my mother (and father, but he doesn't have a hutch) has lived with us. This hutch sits next to a perfectly sized wall in our dining/family room area. It is so very heavy that it has always stayed in the same place.

My mother also has an extensive collection of red glass dishes. She has collected them for probably over thirty-five years. I love using them. Red is such a versatile color! I can use them for Valentine's Day, Christmas, and all the patriotic holidays!

Her dishes have sat in the hutch for many more years than she has lived with us. However, no one ever commented on them. No one ever really saw them! The hutch is so dark (black and dark brown) and the dishes such a deep red, everything just blended. The "red holidays" would pass and even I would forget I had them!

So, after twelve years, I finally did something about it! (Yes, it did take a long time to even realize there was a problem!)

Here is a picture half-way through the project:

I covered the back of the hutch with scrapbook paper. So easy. Not a new idea, I know. I've seen it done all over blogland. But, it was an idea that worked!

This dishes are visible now. Enough so that I'll remember to use them!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

The Marriage Protection Act, Part 1

This is a cause that is very dear to my heart. And I'll tell you why. I've got so many why's, it may take at least a few posts.

I believe that all beliefs must have a foundation. The foundation for my life and everything in it and about it is God and His Word. So, that's where I start with everything. I don't think that there is anything in this life that cannot be filtered through the Word of God. Only after that, can you know if something is right or wrong, good or bad, fit for you or not.

Marriage was instituted and ordained by God into every society and culture. It was not a thought brought to us by human government. Yes, in our culture and in our legalities, we usually obtain a marriage license. But, that is not where the authority comes from. There is no "reason" for marriage outside of God's plan. After God created man and woman, he put marriage into place.

Genesis 2:24 -- immediately after the creation of woman -- states, "Therefore shall a man leave his father and his mother, and shall cleave unto his wife: and they shall be one flesh."

When talking of marriage, the Apostle Paul compares the relationship between a man and wife with the love between Jesus and His followers. He quotes from Genesis 2 when he writes in his letter to the Ephesians (5:31-32), "The two will become one flesh. This is a profound mystery -- but I am talking about Christ and the Church."

In other words, it wasn't God who afterwards thought that it might be understandable to us if He used the example of marriage to explain Jesus' relationship with us. It was the other way around. He ordained marriage as a reflection upon Himself and His relationship with us.

When a couple marries, their act of consummation is a symbolic picture of the wedding of Christ and His followers. In a real sense, each time a couple enjoys the “marriage act”, it is a proclamation to Satan that God’s plan of love will win out over Satan’s attempt to dethrone the Lord in the Garden of Eden. Even though it seems incomprehensible when we say it, every time a married couple enjoys one another sexually, the gospel is proclaimed!

Is there any wonder that Satan wants to pervert it? (as he has done music, medicine and medical research, dance, and so many other things)

I sincerely HOPE that you in California have heard of Proposition 8 by now. It is the Marriage Protection Act. It originally stated that “Only marriage between a man and a woman is valid or recognized in California.” That’s it. The same 14 words that were used when California voted on it before. (Unfortunately, our Attorney General got ahold of it and reworded it.) At that time of the first vote, 61% of the voters said yes. Four San Francisco-based judges have now said no. They decided against the will of the people. Proposition 8 will protect the people’s will and restores the definition of marriage -- the definition from the beginning of time.

Prop. 8 does not take away any rights or benefits from gay or lesbian domestic partners. Under California law, they “shall have the same rights, protections and benefits” as married spouses. (Family Code 297.5) Prop 8 will not change this. We are not trying to take anything away from domestic partners.

Many people ask why Proposition 8 is so important. If we have same-sex marriages, what difference will that make to me?

There are many differences it will make. Hopefully, I will address them in future posts. But, the spiritual foundation is this:

Anything but a monogamous heterosexual marriage is a direct affront to our salvation and to our relationship with Christ. Remember, Biblical marriage totally outdates governmental laws of marriage. We have to remember that it isn’t our laws that govern our marriage; it is God’s Word!

What can you do?

Of course, the main thing you can do is VOTE! If you are not yet registered to vote, do so immediately. The cut off date is October 20, so you have a few more days. Do it today!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

What Would You Have Done With It?

A couple of weeks ago, we came across this very old suitcase at a yard sale. It is SO HEAVY, I cannot imagine anyone actually carrying it when their belongings were inside.

But it really did capture our attention. Gabe and I (and Sarah-Kate!) love old suitcases. I probably wouldn't have bought it, just because it really was beat up. But, then we saw this sticker.

That sticker and the fact that the price was $1 made up our minds. Just think of its history! My mind just reels with questions. Who owned it? Where's it been? What has it carried? How long has it been around?

I'm not sure who thought of it first, but we somehow both thought of making it into a coffee table. I know what you're thinking.........a coffee table? What would make us think of that?

The bottom of the suitcase was not in good shape at all.

So, Gabe cut a piece of plywood to fit and I covered it with batting (another yard sale for 25 cents) and a piece of vintage-looking fabric (2/3 of a yard @ $1 a yard). I used hot glue.

The most expensive part of the whole project was the legs. From now on, I will be on the lookout for legs, spindles, and finials at yard sales and thrift stores!

The fabric-covered plywood did double duty. It helped make the inside look nice and it gave something extra to screw the screws into.

I primed the legs,

and then sprayed them with this.
You can see that it kind of globbed in a few places, but it really isn't noticible when they are sitting under the suitcase.
So, we attached the legs and here we are! A perfectly old, beat-up, funky coffee table!

With storage space inside.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Another Quilt Giveaway You Don't Want to Miss!

This must be the season for great giveaways! Here I am posting two great giveaways back to back!

Elizabeth over at Pigtails and Snails is giving away this absolutely fabulous quilt! It is her very own original pattern named "Spring Up"; however, it is bursting out with beautiful autumn colors.

Now, hurry on over and enter this fantastic giveaway!

Monday, October 13, 2008

Want to Win a Vanity Dressing Table?

If so, get yourself over to Decor to Adore! Laura Ingalls Gunn is having a giveaway in honor of her 100th post! You can win a dressing table (size of your choice) ready to decorate however you wish from Ready to Cover. The winner will be announced on Monday, October 20.

And while you are visiting Decor to Adore, go ahead and take a good look around. You'll not only see great decorating pictures, but you'll learn a thing or two about decorating styles and history in the process.

Friday, October 10, 2008

The 10 Day Give

So, have you joined? We have!

People from all over have joined together to start a "giving revolution"! Beginning TODAY!

The 10 Day Give is a challenge that is designed to help us get our minds off of ourselves and start thinking about how we can help others.

This is an opportunity to choose, on purpose, to give of ourselves.

For some people that means giving money, for others time is far more precious than money, and for others it may mean their expertise in an area. But, no matter who you are, we all have something to give.

There are no rules, no judges, and no right or wrong ways of completing the challenge.

For ten days, starting today and ending on Sunday, October 19, we are giving -- on purpose and with a purpose. Something different each day, and to someone different each day. It doesn't matter what the gift is, how much it costs, who it is given to, or how it is given. The point is just to give.

You don't have to, but you can sign up at And if for fun, you'd like to send in little reports and also see what others are doing (might inspire you and give you new ideas), you can do so at Daja's blog, in other words . . . -- anonymously, if you would like.

Come join the giving revolution!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Welcome, BATW!

Welcome, BATW'ers! I'm so glad you found your way here today! (If you don't know what BATW is all about, click on the above image and find out what all the excitement is about!) I'm sure Daja's blog will be so much more creative than mine today. It usually is. She is a gifted writer (even published!) and her mind just works in a much more creative fashion in all areas than mine!

A quote from my other daughter is much more like me. "My mother says I'm,, oh, yeah, quick-witted!"

But welcome, anyway, to where I journal my days. Sometimes I get caught up with life and forget to journal it; other times I forget to see the wonder of the day and so don't journal it; but my goal here is to journal my days as I walk this journey here on earth. Sometimes, it may actually interest some of you. Sometimes, it may only interest my husband who also enjoys every little detail about our grandchildren!

Just a few words about me. I am the mother of six -- three by marriage (update explanation: my children-in-law), and the grandmother of soon-to-be twelve. Yes, can you believe that? And here I am so young and all. My husband and I pastor a small church in a small town. We enjoy life and thank God for His many blessings as we purpose our lives around Him. Oh, and we ride a Goldwing.

So, I live on the Central Coast of California. I'm not just giving you directions on where to look on a map, that is what we call where we live -- The Central Coast of California. It is basically made up of two counties, Santa Barbara and San Luis Obispo. I live in San Luis Obispo County. Our county is divided into South County and North County. I live in North County. Even though there are quite a few towns in both North and South County, we will often just refer to something being in North or South County. Why all that is important to tell you, I have no idea.

You will notice a great many Spanish city names and Saints' names for cities in California. California was settled by the Catholics bringing Christianity to the natives. (very simplified explanation) I'm not Catholic, but the missions are fascinating places to visit. There are twenty-one in all. We have two in San Luis Obispo County -- one in South County, one in North County.

One of the things I always seem to be explaining to people is that I don't live in L.A. California and Los Angeles are not synonymous. I'm a native Californian and have lived in many places here. Some of those places look like the following. Definitely not L.A.

But, what's it like where I live now?

No, this isn't where I live, but I did live in what used to be a caretaker's cottage once. This is Hearst Castle, where William Randolph Hearst actually lived and entertained the famous and the infamous of Hollywood. It is reported that one day he said to his architect, "…Miss Morgan, we are tired of camping out in tents at the ranch in San Simeon, I would like to build a little something…” It is now a state park and you can take tours.

I live in the midst of vineyards,

and the road to my house is surrounded by olive and almond trees.

Not far from where I live is this place:

Can you read what it says? The EARTHQUAKE CAPITOL OF THE WORLD! Yes, here is where they have equipment buried deep in the earth to register the earthquakes. Yes, I live close to two major fault lines.

Three days before Christmas in 2003, our town suffered extensive damage from a major earthquake.

One of the important reasons for our town existing is the sulphur hot springs. A upscale resort was built and attracted folks from all over to come bathe in the healing springs. Our town boasts the famous -- Paderewski lived here, and the infamous -- Jesse James and his gang had hide-out tunnels under said resort. I guess they all came to enjoy the hot springs! They (the springs, not the outlaws) are still here, but aren't the big draw anymore.

One of the more interesting things that happened during the earthquake was a HUGE spring came shooting forth out of our library/city hall parking lot! The hot sulphur water flowed through town for days before it could be re-routed. It's hard to shut off a geyser. People sat on curbs soaking their feet! It is still flowing and being pumped into a river that flows through town. (The sulphur can still be smelled once in awhile and in certain places.) However, the sinkhole is still there and they don't really know what to do about it. So, there's a big fence around the hole in the parking lot and we lost a big part of our downtown parking!

This picture was taken toward the bottom, but that's about 100 - 150 feet down!

One of my favorite things about our town is the city park. Isn't it pretty?

The park is used quite a bit. There are wine festivals, olive festivals, farmers' markets, car shows, and concerts. I blogged about how much fun those concerts are here. A very special thing happened in that gazebo. One anniversary, my husband presented me with dinner right in the gazebo! Catered with linen, crystal, and roses. Serenaded by violinists! Just like in the movies! Isn't he the most romantic?

A couple more fun things about my town.

One Saturday night each December, about ten blocks of a popular street are blocked off and every house is decorated and offers something to eat or entertain you. This evening attracts people from far and wide and about 10,000 people crowd into those ten blocks during the evening. You are greeted by carolers and entertained by dance troupes. You can visit Scrooge's house where he keeps yelling at you to go away (probably the biggest crowd is around this house) or you can come by where my church's worship team is singing and handing out hot chocolate. You can view living Nativity scenes and send a letter to Santa Claus. You come home with your pockets laden with candy canes and your fingers sticky from cotton candy. You also come home with the Christmas spirit launched for the season!

A grand thing about our town is that it hosts the California Mid-State Fair. It is twelve days long and brings the hottest names in entertainment to this little place. It's amazing.

Actually, the fairgrounds have now been re-named. It is now called the Event Center. Probably more aptly named, but not as old-fashioned as "fairgrounds". I doubt that there is a weekend all year long that something isn't happening there. From horse shows to home shows, from bike runs to gala events. For being a small town, we have a lot happening here. That's what we get for being halfway between San Francisco and Los Angeles and on a major highway, I guess.

I was going to tell you a bit about South County and the coast, where we used to live, but I think you're probably tired of reading by now. So, I'll keep Madonna Inn, Bubblegum Alley, the sand dunes, our tourist towns, and our university for another time. I'll leave you with a few pictures and you can guess which one is which!

Thank you for visiting today. I so enjoyed having you. Please come again. I'll be seeing you around your place!
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