Wednesday, October 29, 2008


After a couple of days of slinging paints and slopping glues, I found myself wondering, What in the world am I doing?

I looked at my paint splattered, sticky hands and the projects spread across the worktable and asked the sister to question #1, Why did I start this?

The answers came quickly, backwards, but quickly... #2 - to encourage someone in their walk with God; to put scripture in the hands of the person who ends up with these books.... and #1 - I'm doing what God has given me to do!

So... I paint away... for the glory of God!

What have you been given to do?

And let us not be weary in well doing: for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not. Galatians 6:9

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Did you know Yo-Yo is a brand name?

Do you realize that November is only 4 days away? Regardless of who wins the election, that means Christmas is right around the corner!

Today I went into my workroom, determined to start some of the projects that I have in mind for gifts. I sanded and painted the covers of throw-away books.

the first step toward an altered book
I decided not to watch the paint dry... there had to be something better to do! So, I pulled out my pile of old post cards and found a few interesting things like this...

notice the postmark
and started on this!

the beginning of an altered suitcase!
By the time the first coat of paint was dry, there was wet glue that needed time to dry, so I went back to the paintbrush for coat #2!

I know it's efficient... but I felt like a yo-yo.

And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us: and establish thou the work of our hands upon us; yea the work of our hands establish thou it. Psalm 90:17

Friday, October 24, 2008

What was I thinking?

This post just needs something pretty

My unofficial title here at home is... ahem... Undisputed Reminder of All Necessary Activities & Get-togethers", otherwise known as URANAG.

I have always taken my responsibilities very seriously, making sure my Dearly Beloved and I are where we are supposed to be, when we are supposed to be there.

It must be that the weather was about to change... or maybe planets somewhere were colliding... maybe I'm just not as good at my "job" as I think I am.

Yesterday, we left the house at 7:47 am for Grandparents Day in Belmont. This is a 2-hour trip and we needed to be there by 9:30. Obviously, we were going to be late. For the head URANAG, that was not acceptable, but what is, is, so we pushed the speed limit as much as we could and arrived only 5 minutes late.

There were little things along the way that should have set off some alarms.

  1. My daughter didn't call to check our arrival time.
  2. The "Welcome Grandparents" message wasn't on the school sign.
  3. The parking lot wasn't very full.
  4. The doors to the school were locked.

We finally figured out how to get into the school office, to have the secretary tell us that we weren't late at all! In fact, we were 6 days, 23 hours and 55 minutes early!


All this begs the question, Would I have been as gracious as my husband was if he had made the same mistake?

Something to consider.

Wherefore let him that thinketh he standeth take heed lest he fall. I Corinthians 10:12

Sunday, October 19, 2008

It's on fire!

I know that I promised video, but the still shots were so much better!

all ready to go - 25' high
It was the bonfire of the decade... beautiful... amazing... worth all the work for the man who spent weeks planning, gave days to the making.

this could be seen from space!

I wish you could have been there to hear the sound, to feel the heat, to share the wonder. It was great.

For our God is a consuming fire. Hebrews 12:29

Thursday, October 16, 2008

All around the house

I am swamped with stuff. It all started when I decided that my workroom needed some tweaking...

Thus began the happy little game of musical belongings (known at old time birthday parties as musical chairs) that has consumed nearly every room in my house and my entire week!

To give you just a little taste of the chaos...
the upstairs computer moved downstairs
the workroom armoire moved to the hall
the hall cedar chest moved to the the workroom
the office barrister case moved to the workroom
the vintage cupboard moved to the office....

and on and on it goes! Books, supplies and equipment all have to find new homes.

Am I glad I started all this?

Ask me in a week.

What's that? You don't see any pictures?

Do you honestly think I would take - or show - pictures?!?

In fact... I wonder where my camera is....

My help cometh from the Lord, which made heaven and earth. Psalm 121:2

Monday, October 13, 2008

Seek and ye shall find

My "dearly-beloved" loves to find little out of the way shops that require a sense of adventure, an undauntable drive for a bargain, and a bar of soap when you're finished. I was in on the excitement the other day.

It was my second visit to this shop. The first time, I talked myself out of a couple of things. I regretted those decisions as soon as I got home and determined that, if I visited again, I would buy anything I wanted (I am a very discriminating shopper) that was cheap and unique. Of course, the things I saved for "next time" last time, were gone, so I made sure I looked in, under... all the preposition words!... everything that I could reach.

I found something I love. It was tarnished and dirty and unusual... and cheap! I grabbed it and never let go. Want to see?

Before #1........

all folded up
Before #2...........

completely open
After #1........

easy to store
After #2

Can't you imagine cookies, or truffles?
All this beauty for only..... $3 and some elbow grease! I can't wait for Thanksgiving, our church Christmas Tea, our family Christmas, anything!

I can't wait to see what I find on the next visit.

For the Lord seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but God looketh on the heart. I Samuel 16:7

Friday, October 10, 2008

Breakfast with Mama

A meal with my mother has always been an event.

Always at a table, properly set - no cartons or store packaging in sight (with the possible exception of ketchup) - on a beautiful tablecloth. I grew up assuming that was how dinner was served everywhere.

Years of dinners with my own family were much the same. It wasn't until I had an empty nest that I started to relax the "rules"... an occasional meal in front of the TV didn't seem so distasteful.

This past week, we spent a few days with my mother. Every morning we started the day at a breakfast table that was beautiful. It really didn't matter what was in the bowls, or on the plates, with flowers on the table and colorful place settings, it was a treat to arrive in the dining room.

Note the green antique pitcher
I think I'll quit being lazy. Gracious living is worth the effort.

But ye, brethren, be not weary in well doing. II Thessalonians 3:13

Monday, October 6, 2008

The inferno

Every October, our church has a hayride/bonfire for the adults. The wagon chugs down little traveled country roads, while we sing old songs (many that I don't even know!) and watch for deer or any other wildlife not frightened away by our noise. When the hay wagon finally returns to the barn, we all gather in a field around a 3-story pile of wood... there is a moment of silence as we listen for the "whoosh" and then, wow, the mother of all bonfires dances before our eyes.

Everyone loves the fire. They look forward to it and back upon it with great appreciation for the skill required to build such an inferno.

What they don't know, is long before the cornstalks begin their dry rustle,

dry corn
... "inferno fever" sets in here at home.

Far behind our house, tucked in the midst of some trees, a column of broken pallets begins to grow. My dearly beloved, the inferno master, says he needs "125, but I could get by with 100."

growing pile of pallets
He spends hours searching out the free fuel, loading it into his trailer, all the while picturing the expectant crowd... anticipating the "whoosh".

the mother lode!
It's a lot of pressure for a working man... but he wears the title, "inferno master", with great joy.

There are things you do because you have to.
There are things you do because you should.
And then there are the things that embody the utter joy of being alive!

The bonfire is in 12 days. We'll have video... maybe you'll get to hear the "whoosh".

For God giveth to a man that is good in his sight wisdom, and knowledge, and joy... Ecclesiastes 2:26

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The end of the tales

Paul Harvey has a lock on the phrase, "The rest of the story", but that won't keep me from sharing my own version of the rest of the stor(ies) in my week.

Story #1 - The grape juice has rested the prescribed amount of time. In spite of my best efforts, it continues to taste like watery Kool-Aid. I now consider Welch's a bargain... at any price!

the grapes
Story #2 - The Bible cover has been at work for almost a week now. Because I have a distaste for the noise of Velcro and zippers, I pulled out my stash of old buttons and created a silent closure. So far... it's doing great!

silent buttons

Story #3 - My shoes. Ah, my lovely shoes... the ones with the toe stitching and button detail? (What is it with me and buttons lately?) An e-coupon for 15% off and the promise of free shipping forced my hand. They came. I tried, and tried, and tried to convince myself they were comfortable. The box is already winging its way back to dot-com-land. They were so beautiful... sniff.

Now you know.

The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: but the word of our God shall stand forever. Isaiah 40:8

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Wait... wait...

How can you tell a person that has no friends? Check out the produce department at your favorite grocery store. She's the one buying zucchini.

With that fact of Midwestern life firmly in my brain, I plant zucchini every year... hoping against hope that it will grow. It never does. This year, my plant produced 3 small zucchini - and two of those were pecked away by wild turkeys that wander through our yard.

I was rescued from a public admission of friendlessness, by a widower at church who generously shares everything that he grows... tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, and this week, grapes.

I accepted the 2 big bags of white and green seeded grapes, wondering what in the world I was going to do with them. (Zucchini is easy - there's bread and cake and pickles and casseroles!)

After a bit of searching, I found an old cookbook with a recipe for juice. It wasn't too complicated, so I washed, simmered, and strained the grapes.

Now I'm in the required 24 - 48 hour waiting period.

I did take a little taste while it was still hot... I'll let you know if there is some magic in the waiting. I sure hope so.

... the trying of your faith worketh patience. But let your patience have her perfect work, that ye may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing. James 1:3,4