...it SURE is slow

After too much time assembling the border and a few other tiny sections,
we cleared the table to get ready for dinner.
With a sigh, I said,
"It's not impossible, but it SURE is slow!"
 ***
As soon as the words were out of my mouth,
I realized how descriptive they were of so many OTHER things in my life.
Not all that is possible happens quickly.
Many possibilities become realities over time and with patience. 
Patience IS a virtue.
“Patience, grasshopper," said Maia. "Good things come to those who wait."
"I always thought that was 'Good things come to those who do the wave,'" said Simon. 
"No wonder I've been so confused all my life.” 
(Cassandra Clare, City of Glass)

Connections


I drew a fine line in my Bible in II Peter this morning during Pastor Bill's sermon.
A GREEN line, actually.
Maybe you see it up there.
The one with arrows pointing up and down.
Making A Connection.
Yes, my mind was running in a parallel track to what he was saying just then...
But it was there for me.
Couldn't have been clearer.
THE Connection between intentions and making every effort.
Do you see it?

Never Say Never

 A fifty-cent purchase a week or so ago
turned into a Life Lesson for me.
"Never!"  I had said emphatically in the past.
Several times upon seeing framed jigsaw puzzles!
"NEVER would I ever preserve and frame a jigsaw puzzle."
 However...
when THIS one was completed,
I ate my words.
My husband re-sized a frame.
My dad undertook the tedious process of painting the frame.
(It required a few coats to reach into the crevices.)
Mod-podged, it now stands here.
I shall have to find the proper hanging place.
But meanwhile, I'm reminded of a Bible character who once said "Never".
I'm revisiting that word and will think soberly of it every time I look at this piece.

"No!" Peter insisted. "Even if I have to die with you, I will never deny you!"
And all the other disciples vowed the same
(Matthew 26:35)

Growth

Spent Sunday afternoon finishing up my first "read" for 2017.
Incidentally, I keep a log of books I read under the tab "reading" below my header.
I can't remember how this particular title came across my radar,
but I read it with great interest.  
It was a somewhat sad but stimulating read about life in Europe in the 20's--
feuds and friendships, successes and sorrows.
After I finished, I typed out at least 45 quotations from the book
from page numbers I jotted down while reading.
(Not sure WHY I do this; I just do.)
I also thought of an empty Bible cover I had and pressed it into duty
as a carry-all for pen, notecards and my current read.
It's serving me well.  I'm glad I thought of it! 
This morning I ran into a tweet by Patsy Clairmont:
"We can grow as long as there is breath in our bodies and an earnest will to learn."
Growth is my current and conscious pursuit in 2017--
particularly in grace and the knowledge of my Lord Jesus Christ.
I want to keep expanding my reading horizons, too.
 
But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. 
To him be glory both now and forever! Amen.
2 Peter 3:18

I Approve of this Cake

Copied from Facebook post (sorry, I can't remember when/whose, etc.)
and approved by me and my in-house test group!
It could also be appropriately titled "Cake That Doesn't Last".
Yes.  That's all I have to blog about on this cold, laid-back Saturday afternoon
except for the book I'm reading, Everybody Was Young,
and the puzzle going on at our kitchen table.
When finished it should look like this!
The good smell of beans cooking in the crock-pot with ham, onions and garlic
wafts lazily through our house.
Thankful for all the good things I'm enjoying.

Little Things to Do Today

"Little things to do today" was a line I journaled early this morning.
It was followed by a list that expanded as the day went on:
clear landing
select/sign cards for R, F, and S
plants watered upstairs
make Do Nothing Cake 
look for that little crock for S
While searching for two little things include in a birthday gift for a friend,
I found several little things (dollhouse furniture and accessories)
that needed repair.  I asked my father (who agreed) to fix them
Then, I proceeded to take care of other little things
and found myself with time between the last little thing
and the time my husband returned home for lunch.
Opening the refrigerator door, I found more little things!
These mustard packets - collected over a period of time.
So I did yet another little thing WITH little things.
Snipping the ends off of each packet, I emptied them into a larger mustard container.
Later, after lunch, I checked my Facebook, emails and Twitter.
There I found this quote by Alicia Britt Chole:
Obedience in small things is a big thing to God's heart.
D'ya know what?
I've not run out of little things to do today AND I'm finding great satisfaction in doing them.
My little things are adding up!

Limbo

Commenting on Susan's recent post, I said,

It's been an unusual holiday for me (maybe because Christmas & New Years were on Sundays)... Somehow, though I wanted to prepare mentally for 2017, I was always behind myself.

 It really wasn't until today (1/3/2017) that it began to sink in that we are already 3 days into it! I find myself without a defining "word"f or the year, with no "resolutions", and strangely OK with both. 

Looking forward to how the days unfold; learning new things; keeping a curious mind; staying active and healthy physically and mentally. I've kind of given up being profound and philosophical and will just hunker down and do what are the obvious things in front of me to do and do them well with joy and enthusiasm.

Can anyone else relate?

Today, the wind whips furiously outside drying up the wetness remaining
from the dreary, rainy day yesterday.
I look away from my laptop screen to the window across the room
and see the wind is bringing with it new cold.
Snow flakes blow confusedly outside the one window across the room.
As eager as I am for the holiday season to be over and to resume "normal" life,
I still feel suspended in a limbo-like state.
(limbo: an uncertain period of awaiting a decision or resolution; an intermediate state or condition)

Having given up being profound and philosophical (see original comment),
I find myself oddly curious and surprisingly content.

The Day-After-New-Year's-Day

 Gray skies and a parking lot blanketed with vehicles...
a perfect day to spend a few hours at a table in the corner.
Four stacks of magazines--his and hers, read and unread.
f
 Ideas abounding!
 Inspiration-packed!
....and then home to share a breakfast-type supper
with Dad, sister & brother-in-law and the love-of-my-life.
Afterwards, we cleared the table to play a couple of card games.
Now, the evening draws to an end as the long third quarter of the Rose Bowl game continues.
I'll head upstairs to read my book soon...
What a relaxing way to spend the day-after-New-Year's-Day.
(I hope YOUR new year is off to an equally fulfilling start.)

Christmas Extended

 Our Christmas-ing continued on Tuesday
 when our daughter and son-in-law and their six children
 came to spend a few hours with us.
Great-Grandpa joined in playing "Would You Rather",
 and Silas said HE would rather talk like Elf than laugh like Santa!

 We sure had fun!
All of us from 1 to 90!


Some persistently (but unsuccessfully) attempted to solve the Nine Square Puzzles.
A few good conversations were had, too!

The time together was short but packed with people, pizza, pop, potato chips and pineapple!

Our Sunday Christmas' Afternoon

 Simple
 Stimulating
 Tasty
Celebrative.
This was our small and special Christmas afternoon this year.

Page Eleven

I love the way this book is covered and bound!
The pre-Christmas day had come to a peaceful end.
Winter solstice with its long, dark night accentuated by lunar eclipse
offered the perfect opportunity to begin to read in earnest.
Anticipation had been building all day.
I propped the pillow just so under my head, opened the book
and began to read.
My reading came to a halt on page eleven.
I found it FULL of wonderfully descriptive words and phrases,
Without pen and paper, I feared waking in the morning 
and not being able to remember them all.
So reluctantly, I closed the book and went to sleep.
~Sarah was tall and gaunt, with gray hair strained back from a grim, determined countenance.  She had a heart of gold, though she kept it hidden, and her preference was for the gloomy side of life
rather than the sunny one~
~she exclaimed sepulchrally~
~The temptation to annoy Sarah by taking an optimistic view was 
one he had never been able to resist.~
~Not a very beautiful collection, perhaps, but part of Grandmother and therefore priceless.~

This morning while the men of the house work to install a bathroom heater/vent/fan
(an early Christmas present),
and while the rest of you are probably busy with last-minute shopping, decorating, 
wrapping, cooking and baking,
I will resume reading on Page Twelve after I look up the definition of sepulchrally
(although I have a general idea of what it means).

Oh, Holy Night!

It was a special night...
...in some ways, a holy night.
 Friends gathered in this warm and welcoming home
to sing, share, and eat.
The words of one of the carols ESPECIALLY stood out to me this evening:
♪ The King of kings lay thus in lowly manger,
In all our trials born to be our Friend!
He knows our need—to our weakness is no stranger.

Behold your King; before Him lowly bend! ♪
Those middle two lines!  
Ah.  Those middle two lines...
This ornament - crafted by our Sunday School teacher and given to each of us Sunday morning.

Christmas Cutouts

For many years, these cutouts from a magazine insert
lay in a cubbyhole of a vintage desk of ours...
Unsure of exactly how I'd ever use them,
they remained flat and forgotten
until I discovered them a couple of days ago.
I handled them fondly
(almost reverently)
as I searched for a place for them.
 Our small, sparsely ornamented white tree
seemed like the perfect spot.
Maybe next year I'll place them in an "orphaned" stable
from an abandoned nativity set.
For now, these simple cutouts serve as silent reminders
of several things I've cut out of our Christmas activities and decor
to accommodate the changes and realities in our life and family
as well as to honor Him whose birth we celebrate.

How about you?
Any "Christmas cutouts" at YOUR house?

While Shepherds....

♪ While shepherds watched their flocks by night,
all seated on the ground;
the angel of the Lord came down,
and glory shone around ...♪
 It dawned on me this morning as I posted these words
from a Christmas carol on my facebook page
that "glory shone around"
in circumstances most ordinary - humble even,
in darkness,
and close to the ground.
That's where I live!
 I'll think of this with fresh appreciation when I pass our mantel
that holds (among other things) my small collection of  motley sheep.
Glory!
While shepherds...

Writing a Song a Week #3

Writing a Song a Week #3
♪ I wait for the Lord; my soul waits and in his word I hope. My soul waits for the Lord more than watchmen for the morning ♪ (Psalm 130:5-6)