Friday, September 28, 2012

Posy arrangements drawing to a close

I still have some flowers blooming around my house,
but some have retired for the season.

I refill the vases every week,
so they never look the same.

Soon my snippets of summer blooms,
placed around the house, 
will be no more---
until next summer.

I will miss them.

(I will post more about student council and homecoming soon.)

Thursday, September 27, 2012

"City girls have nothing on these girls!"

This is what you get when you let country girls be themselves.
I'm advisor for Student Council which is responsible for Homecoming activities.
I took it over because it was being done shoddily.
These girls deserve better.

Proud little brother (9th grader) with senior (12th grade) homecoming queen candidate 'big sis'.
The tractor was hauled to our school by their dad.
Bless his heart!
The heading is a quote from the beaming dad.

Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Corner View:this is horrible--truly

Mostly light-hearted horrible events so far on corner view, although at the time the potato and melted plastic in Nadine's microwave was what she least needed or wanted.  And I'm sure Francesca is a bit discouraged at being on 3rd try with her knitting project.  She has much more patience than I in that area.

I tried to go light-hearted, but can't.

My son became officially divorced yesterday after a year and a half of lawyers going back and forth.  He can truly begin this new chapter of his life now.  But oh the price. 

I have been there.  The actual day I still vividly remember.  My husband tried to do all the right things to make the ending of our marriage easier to take: he picked me up, took me to breakfast before court and then back to my 'new' home.  He was attentive and caring.

 I sit here and think, "What was his point?  To soothe his concience?"  When in the end, I became unglued and started sobbing, he lost patience.  He'd done all he could to make it easier.  But how do you make the ending of a twenty-year marriage easy?  You don't.  Twenty years were ended in less than fifteen minutes in court.  We had a dissolutionment not a divorce.  I knew better than to fight him in court.

My son did not want to go the court route, but his wife would not compromise and no part of these past months has even appeared easy.

He didn't want this, but it takes two to make marriage counseling work and a body sitting beside you does not mean anything unless that body is thinking, talking, working towards repair of the marriage.  He was there in spirit, mind, and body. She was there in body only.  I remember when it hit him that she didn't want to save the marriage.  It was horrible.  It always is.

He has much love and support around him as do his three children.  We will weather this together.
But oh how truly horrible that divorce has once again visited my son.  He was15 when he witnessed his parents' split.   He is 34 as he witnesses his wife's and his. His children are 5, 7, and 9.

This was the night reality truly sunk in.
The kids were leaving with their mother for the annual summer vacation
in Nagshead---this time without their dad.
It was June 2011.

He managed some light-hearted moments with them.

They didn't see his tears out in the drive-way as he stood with me hugging him,
just as my dad hugged me many times in the tumultous couple of years after my divorce.

Life goes on and many wonderful moments occur once again.
I realized that the experience could make me or break me.
I resolved that it would make me.
It did.

It's 'making' my son stronger, better.
It is not and will not break him.

For more corner views, please check out Francesca's Fuoriborgo.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Barn Charm #55

In honor of Tricia's two year anniversary of barn charm,
I decided to post again.
 I have felt that lately my barns haven 't held their own with others in the collection
and thus backed out for awhile.

I came upon this mysterious beauty
when I took a side road (with trepidation).
It appeared when I least expected a building of any kind.
I immediately pulled over and went exploring,
of course heeding the "Keep Out!" signs.

Coming up on it.

Front view.

Side of it that I first saw. 
Like many around this part of Ohio, it is built into a hillside.

The other side of it.

It has a spring or cold house built partially into the ground of the hill.

I like how it soared!

This caught 'my fancy'.

For more views of barns, please check out Tricia's place.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Light the Night and Monday's Prayer

"Light the Night" for leukemia and lymphoma awareness and research
was held last Thursday night, September 20th in near-by Zanesville, Ohio.
It was held at Zane State.
I participated on the Cambridge, Ohio team
for the first time.

My son was chairman of the event
and a good friend, Amy Adams, was captain of the Cambridge team.
Amy is a 4-year survivor of lymphoma.

I participated in the memorial service where you go up to the mike
and say your loved one's name.
You get a flower and a gold balloon.
My mother Shirley Hilliard died of leukemia 13 years ago this past February.

All the balloons had lights in them. 
Red was for awareness;
gold was in memory;
and white signified a survivor.
Granddaughter Peyton was hoisted on her dad's shoulders to take this photo for me.

Psychedelic shot.

My son Doug addressed the crowd
as chairman of this chapter and event.

Here I am, tired but proud of my son and that I completed the walk.

Here I am with Amy Adams after our walk.

Grandchildren Dillon and Peyton watch their daddy speak.
All four Ohio grandchildren were there, even the 5-yr.-old Irish lass.

Monday's Prayer
Heavenly Father, I seek to be Your faithful servant.
When I am tired, give me strength.
When I become frustrated, give me patience.
When I lose sight of Your prupose for my life,
give me a passion for my daily responsibilities,
and when I have completed my work,
let all the honor and glory be Yours.
100 days of Grace for Women

"Be strong and courageous and do the work."
1 Chronicles 28:20

"For we are God's co-workers.
You are God's field, God's building.
Icorinthians 3:9

"God provides the ingredients for our daily bread
but expects us to the baking.  With our own hands!"
Barbara Johnson

Blessings to you as you begin your week!

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Corner View:Time for Myself

Books: That's luxury time for myself once I begin teaching
whether hardback or kindle (shown below).
I always have one with me and I carve out 5 minutes here,
10 minutes there, and so on,
all day long.

I will put my feet up on a cushion on a chair in my classroom
and take a break from all that crowds my 'being'
at work
and read what I want to read, not what I should read.
This restores my sanity and refreshes my mind, body, and spirit.

I am presently reading 7: An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess
by Jen Hatmaker.

For more corner views, please check out Francesca's place.

Monday, September 17, 2012

The house that might have been home and Monday's prayer

This house was up for auction last year.
You buy blindly as you cannot get in the house before hand.
It had been unlived in for two years
and some of the previous occupants' belongings could still be seen in disarray
from outside looking in.

For our town, known for huge Victorian homes on tiny lots,
the yard is big.
There is space on either side and a decent back yard.
A detached garage is at the end of the back yard
and sits facing the alley.
We were quite interested and our lawyer did some searching.
The title was not clear.
The owners had not been properly notified.
His advice: "Stay away from it!"

So we did.
It was bought back by the bank and put up for sale.
It has been sold and someone has been diligently working on it.

I hope that all has been cleared up for them or they may get a surprise
when the owners get released from jail in Kentucky.

That's right.
Mike and I did our own research
and found that husband and wife had been arrested, etc.
and are now serving time for operating meth labs in Kentucky.
There was no mention of their pre-teenage son.

The photo from my previous post?
We both wondered if in that dark, damp basement
traces of meth activity would be found.

They left abruptly,
rumors of drug selling wafting through this quiet neighborhood.

Meanwhile, our search for a bigger home continues.

Monday's Prayer
I worship You as the all-knowing
and all-powerful God of the universe.
You are Immanuel, God with us.
Thank You that You are always with me.
Thank You that Your presence frees me from all doubt
and gives me increased faith.
Thank You that You hear my prayers
and will answer in Your time and in your way.
You, Lord, are without limitations.
I don't want to limit Your working in my life
by my own faithlessness.
Help me to be joyful in hope,
patient in affliction,
faithful in prayer (Romans 12:2).
I know that You have called me to pray,
but I also know that answering prayer is Your job.
Help my heart to rest in You.

Continue earnestly in prayer, being vigilant in it with thanksgiving.
Colossians 4:2

Friday, September 14, 2012


What do you think when you see this?

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Corner View:Impression

Impressions are important.
Often that first one is your only chance to connect--
to end up in someone's life or in their company (as in job).
Unfair? Perhaps, but that is the way a lot of 'society' is.

No one was decorating this display window.
Therefore, when anyone walked in our school,
especially freshmen students embarking on a new and scary journey
and parents wary of what these next four years would hold for their child,
they saw a blank pegboard with bits of paper hanging here and there
and ugly staples bearing witness that at one point someone cared,
but no longer.

I shuddered every time I saw this.
So when I volunteered and got the positon of advisor to Student Council
and saw that I had a group of artistically talented teen-agers
with pride in their school,
I went to the principal and asked for permission for the SC to take over
the display window.

Next I talked with the group of seniors from SC who all had 7th period study hall.
From these talks emerged the following display.
Anyone walking in immediately sees
we have organizations
and we have artists.
(Also that the district signed a contract with CocaCola to carry only their drinks for our pop, but the vending machines don't work until 3:00PM.  Milk is sold in the cafeteria.)

All of the drawings were done free-hand and then cut out.
K. loves to come up with ideas and figure out a way to make them work.

The lettering, except for the  "Welcome Back! Get Involved. . ."
is also done free-hand which is especially difficult when you have to half-climb
in the window and contort your body to write the words.
M. is remarkable in her ability to do so.

Color is extremely important to this group---they are vibrant, life-loving students
and their world is not made up of muted or dull colors.

Art and sports (the trophies) are important here.
This was at the end of the year last May
when many kids had already taken their work home.

The door is metal and cold.
You would never know that behind it is a world of imagination
with murals on the walls
and paintings on the ceiling.
Ms. C is a talented artist and truly works at getting her students
to reach deep inside to find the artist living there.

Agriculture is important at our school
and we have many Future Farmers of America.
Our seniors are honored each year with a display of photos.

We are a rural school district.

For more corner views,
please check out Francesca's Fuoriborgo.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Barn Charm #54

This was in a field off of Rt. 23 -- a side route off of Rt. 147 east.

A better look at it with some tints added.

This small guy was in an adjoining field.

These are from a drive we took when we escaped to an air-conditioned vehicle
during the powe outage this past summer.
For more barns,
please click below:

Sunday, September 9, 2012

First week of school and Monday's Prayer

This photo is taken looking out of our school's lobby to the front walk and parking spaces.
Beyond them is a strip of grass with a display window/sign like at churches.
Then there is a major road--Rt. 147 and on the other side a farm.

The beautiful bench to the right
was made by several boys in shop class
in memory of the girl student we loved and lost several years ago.
She was in a fatal car crash on her way to school.

The first four days of school went well.
The difference of having this new principal is tremendous
in a truly wonderful way.
We were with the other one briefly at professional day
and some of us women became sick at our stomachs
at just seeing him or hearing his voice.

My classes are smaller this year.
The biggest one has 22 students in it instead of the usual 30 for English I and
I  have an inclusion specialist in there with me.
I only have one special ed. student in there, 
but another four are definitely at risk and/or low-level functioning.

Josh, the inclusion specialist, (used to be called special ed. teacher)
 can take those boys out to his room
when we're doing some high concentration work that require quiet
and that leaves me with 17,
three of whom are extremely high maintenance girls.
The one, L, needs some major prayer.

The staff is happier and that is filtering down to the students.
There is a general feeling of relief among all levels that the tyrant is gone.

Now our colleagues at the middle school are dealing with him.
But he will take care of some discipline issues
 and general disorganization problems there,
which will be good,
There is a group of women teachers that are cohesive and will stand up to him.
We were not that way at the high school.

Here's my Monday Prayer
by Stomie Omartian

"Dancing in the Footlights"
Lord, shine the light of Your Word on the path of my life today.
Make it a lamp for my feet so that I do not stumble.
Bring it alive in my spirit so that it illuminates my mind and soul.
Let it be a guide for every decision I make,
every step I take.
Keep me from turning to the right or the left
 so that I will stay on the narrow path that leads to life.
Help me daily to carve out time to be alone with You and to feed on Your truth.
Great peace have those who love Your law,
and nothing causes them to stumble.
Psalm 119:165
from A Book of Prayer--365 Prayers for Victorious Living.

Friday, September 7, 2012


A former insane asylum that is no longer in use,
even though some open doors and  office stuff in windows,
tell a different story.
It has housed several county agencies since its asylum days.
Due to asbestos, it is too costly to tear it down.
Perhaps that is best.
It stands as a grim reminder of how we (society) mistreated those who needed us most.