Thursday, December 30, 2010

Update--we're back home

Hubby and George share a quiet moment after the grandkids had left last Sunday.

This is the house in Cincinnati back in July.
I forgot to take a picture of it before we left today.
A white wrought iron railing has been added to the porch and steps.

Mike and I drove down for a quick visit to do some little touch-ups.
It has been listed and the pictures in the listing of inside and of the big back yard look great.

We intended to be back last night (Wednesday), but our furnace froze into a huge block of ice
and then died.
We had been having trouble with it, so we're actually thankful it happened when we were there
before we had a buyer.

We got an energy efficient Crane 15 seer (government rating of the efficiency) unit.
Mike called several companies to come give estimates.

The first guy had a decent estimate, but the company had sold all three units in stock by the time we called him back, after the next guy had come and gone. 
This second guy's estimate was high and he couldn't put it in until next week either.

We were looking at next week with the others also.

The  fifth company that we called, sent a guy who said he could install it Thursday morning
(this was Tuesday).
His estimate was lower than any given so far, so bingo-
-we said yes.

After realizing we still had some energy tax credit coming,
Mike asked him about the more expensive energy efficient one.
They didn't have the less expensive brand of this type in stock,
therefore they gave us the best at the same price as the lesser one would have been!
So the small crisis worked out after prayer and then a fervent thank you to God.
We are now home safe and sound.
A big sigh of relief.
The cats were thrilled to see us, although our diabetic neighbor is great with them
and has no problem giving George his insulin shot.

The picture below is of Mike's truck and the trailer
 that he's been hauling huge loads on each time he made a trip.

We did take my SUV this time, because of my fibromyalgia--- 
 I have a multi-adjustable with lumbar passenger seat which his truck doesn't have,
and it's a four hour trip, which can be very uncomfortable.
The trip went well and I was comfortable both ways.

(This picture was taken in summer from the screened in porch off the kitchen, thus the checkered look).

I will catch up on all your news and will also write more later.

Blessings to you all.

By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually,
that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.
Hebrews 13:15

Monday, December 27, 2010

A special smile

 P. got braces put on about a month ago.
She was thrilled to receive this t-shirt
with a very special smile on it.

I will leave that image in your mind as I go without Internet access for a few days.

I will be back before New Year's Eve.  Enjoy your week.


Christmas, grandchildren, cats, and the Monday prayer

 We had Christmas today
my son, his wife, and three of their children.
Colton was at his dad's today,
but we saw him yesterday
and gave him his presents then.

Above is a picture of the Irish lass getting ready to open a present.
This picture shows off her bright red hair.

                                            Below is big sis showing dance moves to little sis.
Gifts have been opened.
Pizza has been eaten,
now is the silly time.

Getting ready to leave. We wanted to show off his doggy face hat,
but he decided to look 'cool', cock his head to the side, and wink at us.

The Irish lass wouldn't get into the picture.
She wasn't very happy about leaving.
So Grandma posed with Peyton and Dillon.

Dillon is into Toy Story and clothes.
So he loved this outfit,
at first he was shy about getting his picture taken.
he got over the shyness and posed.

The two cats after an exhausting day of dodging small children
and if possible -- hiding from them.
Mike and I had finally opened our presents to each other
and the cats settled in on some of the wrapping and tissue paper.
It was a good day.

Tomorrow is Monday and thus Beginning of the Week Prayer Time.
Since it will be the New Year before another Monday Prayer Time,
I thought this one was particularly good for wrapping up one year
beginning another.

Help me to forget all that is behind me
so that I can reach forward to the future
You have for me.
My main goal in life
to fulfill Your calling.
Help me to do that.
Help me to run the race well,
to fight the good fight,
to not compromise the life
You have for me
in any way.
Help me to not look back into the past
 I let fear, doubt, and ignorance
of Your ways
influence the decisions
 I made.
Enable me to rise above all that
the complete wholeness and purpose
You have for my life.


I do not count myself to have apprehended (captured and made it my own yet); but one thing I do,
forgetting those things which are behind and reaching forward
to those things which are ahead,
I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God
in Christ Jesus.
Philippians 3:13 - 14

From one of Stormie Omartian's prayer books.

Blessings to you all as you begin this week.

Friday, December 24, 2010


 This is one of my top three favorite angels.
 It's set on a divider wall that has glass cabinets
set in on each side--one in the living room and one in the dining room.
There is a divider on each side of the opening
from the living room to the dining room--Craftsman style.

The tops of the dividers make for a great display area with angels facing the living room
and some facing the dining room.
This lovely lady with the manger scene
faces the living room.
The angels behind her are facing the dining room.

 I didn't get to crop this picture yet.
This angel was the first one my father bought me
with the "Love from Mother and Dad" note
the first Christmas without her.

                                                         Dad was eclectic in his angels.
                                                This was one of the last he bought me.

The little angel on the left was the angel Mother bought me
 for my first born's first Christmas.
Sara was born five days before Christmas in 1975.
The other angel  represents Mother's 'bell' stage.
I received  angel bells for several years in a row.

The middle angel came from an arrangement that my Grandpa Jarvis
gave me when I was in my teens.
The glass bowl broke, so now I just display the little girl.
The angel on the left was for my first married Christmas in our first home.
It was 1974.
(My first husband and I were married December 22, 1973, but spent Christmas on our honeymoon.)

The three in back are more of the bells.
The two in front came as a pair
and are my mischievous angels.

Two of my glass angels with one (on the far right) that has a stained glass effect.

These are just a few of my angels.

We are going to the late Christmas Eve service at the church
where my father was a minister
from the time I was nine until I was 17.
No doubt we will sing "Hark the Angels Sing" or "Angels We Have Hear on High"--two of many beautiful Christmas hymns.
I pray a blessed Christmas for you all.
To all of you faithful blogger friends and to the family members who read this:
Merry Christmas!

"Angels We Have Heard on High"

Angels we have heard on high
Sweetly singing o'er the plains,
And the mountains in reply
Echoing their joyous strains.

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

Shepherds, why this jubilee?
Why your joyous strains prolong?
What the gladsome tidings be
Which inspire your heavenly song?

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

Come to Bethlehem and see
Christ Whose birth the angels sing;
Come, adore on bended knee,
Christ the Lord, the newborn King.

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

See Him in a manger laid,
Whom the choirs of angels praise;
Mary, Joseph, lend your aid,
While our hearts in love we raise.

Gloria, in excelsis Deo!
Gloria, in excelsis Deo!

                                                        "Hark the Herald Angels Sing"

Hark! the Herald Angels sing,
Glory to the new-born King,
Peace on earth and mercy mild,
God and sinner reconcil'd.

Hark! the Herald Angels sing,
Glory to the new-born King.

Joyful all ye nations rise,
Join the triumph of the skies,
With the angelic host proclaim,
Christ is born in Bethlehem.


Christ by highest Heaven ador'd,
Christ the everlasting Lord!
Late in time behold him come,
Offspring of a Virgin's womb.


Hail the Heaven-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Sun of righteousness!
Light and life to all he brings,
Risen with healing in his wings.


Mild he lays his glory by,
Born that man no more may die,
Born to raise the sons of earth,
Born to give them second birth.


Monday, December 20, 2010

Psalm and Monday Prayer Combined

These are my snow angels-most of them given me by my parents.

I just thought I'd feature them with this post.

I have not been blogging much--writing or reading.
So much else and many others have been needing my time.

Therefore, I may take a short break, but then maybe I won't.
Time will tell.

Meanwhile I'll begin the Monday Prayer with the scripture
that Stormie Omartian always pairs with the prayer.
It's from Psalms, so thus my weekend Psalm (a bit late).

Wait on the LORD; be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart;
wait, I say, on the LORD!
Psalm 27:14


I choose to wait on You instead of just waiting for things to happen.
I refuse to run ahead of Your perfect will for my life.
At the same time, I don't want to lag behind it either
because of steps I have neglected to take.
Show me where I have not been diligent to do things You want me to do.
I commit to trusting Your Word and delighting myself in You.
I rest in You this day and wait patiently for You to bring to pass
all that needs to happen in my life.
Bless me with patience in the process.


Blessings to you as you begin this week!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

a simple manger set

a purchase many christmases ago
this manger set graced my parents' home
for their oldest child's first christmas

later the youngest child--me
looked forward to the 'unveiling' each year

i remember carefully unwrapping each figure 
and placing them where i thought best
this became my most cherished christmas responsibility

i was married two days before christmas
so that christmas was not celebrated
in a home of our own

the next christmas we had settled into our first home
time to decorate
the tree and ornaments were easy

the manger scene?

mother solved the dilemma for me
she bought a new wooden creche set
gave me this simple creche

didn't cost much when bought
but as a little girl i thought it was beautiful

over the years pieces became a bit 'worn'
despite careful handling
i cherished them all
still do

it's the only creche i have ever had

each year i carefully unwrap each piece
and place them where i think best

there have been some additions
but no subtractions

this manger scene means the most to me
of all that i have of christmas decorations
it's not a decoration

its significance and worth goes much deeper
the savior who was born in a manger
the christian home in which i grew up
the mother who passed this tradition on
the father who preached the savior's message

most of all

simple love
manifested in a baby
given to us
by God
so that we might be set free eternally

i rejoice in that love
will continue
part of blog carnival on the word rejoice

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Monday Morning Prayer

I am not down, sad, or depressed, but can have those moments
during the holidays.

I know others do also,
thus the following prayer
to begin this week.

Monday Morning Prayer

I confess to You that sometimes I feel down, sad, or depressed.
But I know You have joy, gladness, peace, and fulfillment for me right where I am.
Help me to put my hope in You and praise You in the midst of whatever I experience.
Help me to look to You for everything,
for You are my God who puts a smile on my face and joy in my heart.


Why are you cast down, O my soul?
And why are you disquieted with in me?
Hope in God;
for I shall yet praise Him,
the help of my countenance and my God.
Psalm 42:11

from Prayers for Emotional Wholeness
by Stormie Omartian

Both photos were taken from my car on my way home from school.
The road in the first one leads up a hill to a sheep farm.
The house is late 1800's and was restored by a friend and her husband.
You have no idea at the bottom that a whole vista of astounding beauty
awaits at the top.

The last one was taken from the front parking lot of 'my' high school.
The hill is across Rt. 147 (Seneca Lake Road),  a major roadway
for 'getting around' back in those hills.
I took this photo mainly for the sky view.

Blessings to you all as you begin your week!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Decorating, To Kill a Mockingbird Projects, and the Weekly Psalm

Last weekend hubby put the lights up outside.
He put up the tree and put the lights on it. 
I then put the 'garland' and the ornaments on the tree.

I also decorated the fireplace mantle.
I have a collection of Santas and a garland through which hubby winds lights.
It makes for a bright display.

Here are a few of the Santas.

Tonight I put out all my angels and the manger scene.  I also finished putting out my snowmen collection (a small one).

I had a tough time with my mouth this week.
My nerves got a bit frayed as my two  freshmen Advanced English classes finished up their
To Kill a Mockingbird projects and presented them.
It's a three-part project: presentation, visual, and written.
There are three grades for a total of 300 points.
Much work is required from the students and me.
[Then the grading begins.]

The stress was palpable.

But it's always worth the work and stress--at least I think so.
The experience is one of educational growth
as well as a stretching exercise in responsibility and patience
for all of us.

I will show pictures and tell more about it next week.

But here's a verse I needed.
It works well for the end of the week and beginning of the weekend Psalm.

I SAID, I will take heed and guard my ways,
that I may sin not with my tongue;
I will muzzle my mouth as with a bridle . . .

And now, Lord, what do I wait for and expect?
 My hope and expectation are in You.

Deliver me from all my transgressions;
 make me not the scorn and reproach of the [self-confident] fool.
Psalm 39:1, 7, 8

And He has put a new song in my mouth,
a song of praise to our God.
Many shall see and fear (revere and worship)
and put their trust and confident reliance in the Lord.

Let all those that seek and require such as love Your salvation say continually,
The Lord be magnified!
Psalm 40:3, 16

Blessings to you all!

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

i miss them

 he could fall asleep 'at the drop of a hat'
one minute with us
next minute
head back
jet fighter sounds

i'm like him
that way
i have to pull over sometimes
to take a 10 minute nap
so i don't
 run off the road

 he often had to do that

some days
i lock my door after school
get my square pillow for my feet
the little one for my head
my lap blanket
2 chairs
(one for torso/one for elevated feet)
i'm asleep

must not be any jet sounds erupting
the custodian would mercilessly tease me
if there were

then i'm up
 ready to finish
organizing for the next day
 drive home

just like him

 he loved gifts
we loved giving them to him

much more fun
watching him open his
than us opening ours

he didn't have much as a child
christmas gifts were sparce

mama always got him a special gift
fooling him into thinking
there wasn't one

they each tried to make up
for what had lacked
in their childhood lives

some don't see it that way
but i do

christmas is tough
for me
while it's joyful

i have wonderful:
children and their spouses
brothers and families
sisters-in-law and families

i have a home

but i miss them
dad and mom

i put up her tree
again this year

he was thrilled the first year i did

he didn't decorate
after she died
that part of christmas
went with her

but he enjoyed
our decorations
especially 'her' tree

he found joy in those around him 
he never stopped missing her

just like i never stop
missing them

(no pictures of mom)

as i read folks' blogs
thoughts of christmas
the meaning
one thought centers tonight
i miss them

my next task --
putting out all the angels
she bought me
over the years
beginning with the december
my daughter was born

she made dad promise
to keep the tradition
he always signed the card
"Love from mother and dad"

he must have made my husband promise
because i still receive one
every christmas

i cherish them all

they make me
miss them---
mom and dad

yet where would i be
without those cherished memories?

i could have been
a "throw-away" child
like the one boy taken to the hospital last week
from my school
no one wanting him

memories can hurt
i can't imagine
not having had the love
that made the memories

yes, i miss my parents tonight
as tears roll down my cheeks
i'm grateful they were precious
to me
so that i have
to miss them

a glimpse of mama's tree and two of the ornament angels

Monday, December 6, 2010

On my way home

"An animal's eyes have the power to speak a great language."
Martin Buber

 On my home last week, this cow's eyes 'beckoned' me to stop the car.
I'm not sure what was being said, but I felt certain it was speaking to me. 

 " I hope to make people realize how totally helpless animals are, how dependent on us,
 trusting as a child must that we will be kind and take care of their needs."
James Herriot

"Ask the animals, and they will teach you, or the birds of the air, and they will tell you; or speak to the earth, and it will teach you, or let the fish of the sea inform you. Which of these does not know that the hand of the Lord has done this? In his hand is the life of every creature and the breath of all mankind." (Job 12:7-10)

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Scruffy helping decorate and the Monday Prayer

 Scruffy thought she would 'help' me decorate.

Then she thought she'd just claim some of my decorations for herself.
 But after awhile, this decorating business became too taxing for her
and she fell asleep on the job.

Later that night as I was almost done decorating the tree,
I wondered where Scruffy was.
Then the mound of tissue paper on the couch moved.
I found her!
Sleeping on the job again.

Tomorrow begins another week.
Here's the Monday Prayer:

 I open my heart to receive Your perfect love into my mind, emotions, soul, and spirit.
Help me to understand the depths of Your love at all times.
Jesus, I know You are the Son of God,
and because I have received You into my Heart,
You live in me and Your love dwells in me.
Help me to live in Your love and not doubt it.
Help me to grow more and more secure in Your love
so that I can grow and thrive the way a child does with a loving parent.


Whoever confesses that Jesus is the Son of God,
God abides in him, and he in God.
And we have known and believed the love that God has for us.
God is love, and he who abides in love abides in God,
and God in him.
I John 4:15-16

From one of Stormie Omartian's books of prayers

Blessings to you as you begin a new week!

 One more view of my sleeping buddy.

Saturday, December 4, 2010

Two simple joyful acts and the End of the Week Psalm

 I think my expression says it well
"If this is where and how I can drink my coffee, then fine, I'll sit here
and drink and watch and find exceeding joy."
And I did!
I'm supervising my son's youngest(the redhead) with her cousin from Texas(the one pouring), who is the youngest grandchild--
until his sis arrives in February.
Both kids love bath time and I enjoy the time with them.
This was the night of our Thanksgiving dinner together.

It's been a hectic week.  Much has happened with "the bad boys."
One was removed from school this week and taken to the hospital
for treatment of mental problems.
He went ballistic on a sub
and had a mental and physical breakdown in the office.
He's a 'throw-away' in that noone from his family is either capable or wants
to take care of him.
He's in foster care right now
and it's not the best.

Three teachers have bonded with three of the other five (I'm one of them).
We are working with each boy and seeing some improvement and hope.
We need prayer for Loads of Patience.
That leaves two plus this one in the hospital.

I have a busy weekend ahead.
I have the entire house inside and out to decorate this weekend
 thankfully with husband's help
and 65 tests to grade (short response, not multiple choice)
plus other misc. worksheets and such to grade.

I'm only to Psalm 63 of my Psalm reading, because I'm not doing it every day.
But I'm not allowing myself a guilt trip, but rather a joy trip on the days I do make it
through another Psalm
on top of other devotions.

O  God, You are my God,
earnestly will I seek You;
my inner self thirsts for You, my flesh longs and is faint for You,
in a dry and weary land where no water is.
So I have looked upon You in the sanctuary to see Your power and Your glory.
Because Your loving-kindness is better than life,
my lips shall praise You.
So will I bless You while I live;
I will lift up my hands in Your name.
My whole being shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness;
and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips.
For You have been my help,
and in the shadow of Your wings will I rejoice.
My whole being follows hard after You and clings closely to You;
Your right hand upholds me.

Psalm 63: 1 -5, 7, 8

Hope you have a wonderful weekend!

I finally got to hold Aaron as I put on his pj's after his bath.
I put the picture here despite the red eye, because I still like it,
and it vividly shows one of the simple acts that I consider
 some of the best moments of my life.

The calender in the background is one his mama made for us grandparents
last year
It's all pictures of  his first year of life with all our birthdays and anniversarys noted.
It was one of my best gifts ever!

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

who is that?

 he pointed to the boy with the donkey
who's that?
his daughters answered
his older son answered
dillon answered

he grinned
 it's not dillon

he pointed to the boy leaning against the wall
and the questioning began again
the same answers: dillon

now his grin was huge
it's not dillon

it's me!
 dillon is the one in the photo above
with little sis addison
his daddy the blond-haired charmer
in the first two frames

two of my favorite photos
of a little boy who won my heart
before he was born

i learned to toughen up
against those huge, warm, brown eyes
that smiled mischievously
a twinkle reaching out to grab my heart

oh he grabbed my heart all right!
still has it

as do the munchkins who call him daddy
four of them
one looks like him
guess who?
well of course---dillon!

 the older two
peyton and colton together

the four grandchildren
are now
 11, 7, 5, and 3
my 'baby'
is 32
a husband, father, son, brother, businessman, friend, son-in-law
he wears all the 'hats' well
proud am I
of all of him
my darling blond imp
here he is with wife
he's not quite 30 in this picture
his equally wonderful sis and hubby
are to the left
i can't forget the youngest

now 20 months old
mama (daughter mine)
is carrying
his sis
abigail elizabeth
due in february

 they all own a piece of my heart

i keep the photos out
in beaten, worn frames
knocked down
cats and grandchildren
outdated photos
not to me

nothing grand
just bits of memories

smile starters
on even the gloomiest days

a non-rhyming poem and tribute to photos
and the wonderful folk in them

i'm still working on taking good photos of photos!