Wednesday, May 15, 2019

A Good Sunday, A Ponytail and a Maxi. Simplicity 4881. Thoughts and More Things I Like-Love!

A Day Trip to Galveston...Do you know that Galveston was the First Wall Street until The Great Storm of 1900?  My Grandma and Grandpa Oddo spent their honeymoon at the Galvez Hotel still in operation there.  This pic is taken on the historical Strand.

I'm wearing one of my favorite things:  A Maxi skirt!  A cotton maxi!   Nothing like them in warm weather!   I wear a culotte style slip underneath for perfect touristing or shopping etc.

This historical Island city has beautiful historical things to see,the craftsmanship of the buildings, the iron work and statuary...Gorgeous.  This is just barely a teensy sampling.  This was in the old ice cream parlour, I notice the floors there and they are so very much like the simple wood floors in my Grandma and Grandpa Oddo's simple home.   There was lots of good eats and laughter in that home...

Their life was simple and I often think of my Italian grandparents and even my parents in their small 30s home where I grew up.  In this day and age where people are in so much debt, they both have to work, leave the home they are in debt for in a car they are in debt for to a job they are in bondage to, to pay for the stuff, not enjoying the home they are in debt for nor their precious children.  I don't think that is life.  The culture has been duped.  It's so sad to me..Often some young people when first married think they have to have a home like a retired oil executive!  Why are the churches not teaching on this!?  Yes, churches!  Donna Reed is alive and well and there would be more if there would be some simple teaching and encouragement on this!   When we first got married we lived in a little condo with outdated everything!  Haha!  And no money to update it either!  But I was able to be there with my baby!  Priceless!  : )


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This used to be the family home people saved up for to raise children.  This was considered most likely even above average.  (Photo by Robert Stock).   Anyone seen the old vintage Donna Reed show?  In the television episodes she was married to a pediatrician who practices out of their home, they had two teenage children.  The camera panned the outside of the home in one of the episodes the other day.  Their home was a rather modest white framed wood, two story, maybe a story and a half with dormer windows.  Not at all what one would think of as an executive home now-a-days.

I didn't intend on writing that but perhaps it will bless or encourage someone, perhaps someone who is seeking and praying on direction in the area of home and such. 

EDIT 5.19  4:46P.M.  When my daughter, Michelle and her husband, Josh went to a premarital class at a large church that would be considered biblical, the young teacher said concerning two income families as he thought it the norm...Let's face it...There is no Ozzy and Harriet any longer.  It was very disappointing for Michelle and Josh to hear a teacher in a church say such a thing since Michelle would be staying home as a homemaker. Let's be careful about the plum line we present, and be very careful as to what is norm, what is discouraged and what is encouraged. With God all things are possible. : )

loading ...  Photo by Robert Stock
My Maxi:

Cotton Nautical Fabric from good ol' smalltown Walmart.  Woo hoo Walmart for placing fabrics and patterns back into stores!

I buy many themes of fabrics, dogs smiling, Christmas dogs, Christmas poodles, Kitty-Cat faces in huge pastel polka-dots on black, WWII maps, and many more novelties!   ...And those maxi skirts will be another blog!  lol

 Pattern:  Oop Simplicity 4881, I add around 8 inches to make it a  maxi.  I make my own tie belts out of extra fabric.  If you want a neat look, you can wear the maxi with the seam going down front!  It gives a neat illusion.  An illusion of what?  I don't know...Just neat and adds interest in some patterns.

While we were in Galveston on the Strand, we sat a spell and enjoyed the heartfelt street preaching of this precious young man:

We crossed the street to talk with him, and he was truly precious.  People were just passing him by etc.   We were so blessed by this young man.   Jem had said, Let's go talk to him, if it were Jesus there we would. 

Here are a couple of clips I caught on video, in the first clip there is an older woman sitting next to me on the park bench speaking, it's not me.

A glimpse into his testimony here in part II...

In other news our first little grandbaby, Asher Samuel was dedicated at a sweet church dedication service on Mother's Day.  Of course Baby Asher has always been dedicated to God from the beginning and in daily prayers.  We don't think official Baby Dedication ceremonies are necessary but very sweet and nice if parents would like to participate.  This church is very accepting of new people, and welcomes all.  Michelle is attending their ladies Bible study with little baby Asher, all children are welcome to the Ladies Bible Study and Michelle said how sweet it is to have mommies with their babies playing around their feet.  How precious!  It's truly amazing how autonomous each church is.  They can even be of the same Christian denomination and yet be very different. The pastor at this church found out that the certificate and little Bible presented had Asher's middle name printed incorrectly.  He told Michelle that if he had to drive the new corrected certificate and Bible to Michelle and Josh's home he would!  Wow.  And this is a larger church as well. What a difference.

I kind of like what Harper Lee, author of the Pulitzer prize winning novel, 'To Kill a Mockingbird" said concerning various life situations:

Best Harper Lee Quotes - Quotes From To Kill A Mockingbird

Josh, Michelle and Baby Asher Samuel after baby dedication.

I just loved this little photo of Asher taken a few weeks ago, so sweet I think.   He truly is a happy baby.

Well, that's the latest in a quick little update here.  

As you can see, we enjoy day trips. This shot was taken in a little town, and it was a windy day, thus a scarf draped around my neck was thrown over my head 50s style.  I kind of like that look, so feminine don't you think?

Music that ministers to me:

Kristene DiMarco  - It is Well

Fernando Ortego - Chimayo

Last Evening:

The lighting was beautiful, even in the back, there had been a glow, it was as if I stepped into another time...I could feel God's Presence and wonder somehow if my dad's presence wasn't with me somehow...Another time in my life...I froze in the lighting...I felt as if I were to blink I would miss it...

Liesl too was enjoying this most beautifully ethereal evening...

Don't ever let yourself get so busy that you miss those little but important extras in life---the beauty of a day...the smile of a friend...the serenity of a quiet moment alone.  For it is often life's smallest pleasures and gentlest joys that make the biggest and most lasting difference.                                              (Unknown)

Take care, Loves,   ~Amelia in the Forest

Thursday, April 18, 2019

'In His Steps' Vintage Copy. Do we Know Him or Know *About* Him?

A visitor disturbs their complacency...

Vintage copy of 'In His Steps'

Our family owned this copy when our girls were little, and we loved this movie.  I humbly recommend.  It's an older movie, probably done in the 50s or 60s but very valuable in it's timeless lessons.

A quote from this old movie, but still relevant for today:

The church is not this building or any other building it's people.  God's people...

This copy is the only one I could find on youtube, sorry about the watermark across the front.  It's still very watchable!    All parts are available so it may be watched in entirety.  

A photo of Jem and our little Asher Samuel.  I thought this was so precious. 

The discovery of God lies in the daily and the ordinary, not in the spectacular and heroic .  If we cannot find God in the routines of home and shop, then we will not find Him at all.
 ~Richard J. Foster

Good Friday

I think of my Grandma and Grandpa Oddo and the simple sweet family times we had in their simple home.  I remember as my Grandma and I stuffed Italian artichokes together one Good Friday, the sky grew dark.  I made a comment about it and Grandma said..."It gets dark and stormy like this every year on Good Friday".  And ya know?  She was pretty much right on that.  We think of Jesus and His suffering on the Cross. 

May We be Easter All the Time

May we be a sweet Light.  May we not be one of the complacent ones who lives for a country club man-made church membership.   I ponder what Jesus must think at times...  If we are greeters at church shouldn't we be greeters elsewhere?  If we are Christians shouldn't we be known by our Love for others at all times?   

I'm not anti-church, but I will say that I am very surprised that there are so many people who seem to equate their faith with going to church and church membership only.  It's as if Church is not their very lives or beings.   I hope we can live the Life fully!   

I can say I know the president, but if I do not walk with him and talk with Him and have that very personal relationship with him?  I really don't know him.  I just know about him.

That's the difference.


My dad used to say...

People may not remember what you said, but they will remember how you made them to feel...

Trust steadily in God, hope unswervingly, love extravagantly.  And the best of the three is love. 

1 Corinthians 13:13 

The wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure.  It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others.  It is full of mercy and good deeds.  It shows no partiality and is always sincere.  And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of goodness.

~James 3:17-18

I hope you all are doing well as we ponder this Easter week.  Last week I learned to my horror that a friend was lost in a horrible car accident.  I will say this gal knew Christ and went into the presence of God.  Her daughter said...Mom only wanted others to know Jesus.     ~Amelia in the Forest

There is a silence into which the world cannot intrude.  There is a peace from God you carry in your heart and cannot lose.  

Friday, March 29, 2019

"The Wrong Man" (1956) ...Cutting the Cable! Spring and the World Goes Round Right?...A Few Snapshots

The Wrong Man  (1956) 

We've watched this movie twice now and I am fascinated by it.  A nightmarish case of mistaken identity done to a good family man, a true story.

The story is of Christopher "Manny" Balestrero an Italian American who plays bass at the famous Stork Club for a living.  He and his wife, Rose have two little boys.

It's a bit frightening that this happened, and it's also frightening that the general population is so eager to label someone wrongly without doing their homework to the full extent.   My dad always said, don't believe anything of what you hear and only half of what you see.

One of the best things about this unusual  Hitchcock movie is the power of prayer portrayed.  One major event and turn in the movie is when Manny is praying as he views an old world style picture of Jesus in his Italian mother's home as she encourages him to pray for strength. 

We need to remember that this can happen and allow me to say my daughter and son in love have a friend who is in a situation very similar to this story and worse.

Henry Fonda plays the part of Manny and it's a pretty good resemblance to the real Manny Balestrero. 

The part of his mother is the sweetest by the way and so seems his wife, Rose. As you will see, Rose does not fare well with all of this and understandably, it's very sad.

There is a street named for Manny Balestrero in New York.  

The Wrong Man is playing on the 'Movies!' channel on regular television and will be playing future showings through April, please check the 'Movies!' site for scheduling.  Thursdays and Sundays they play the older Noir style movies that we love, but the Noir movies are also sprinkled through the week. 

The trailer for The Wrong Man.  (1956)   

The complete movie is on youtube and perhaps at your local library as well!

'To Tell the Truth' program in 1957.  The real Manny Balestrero.

If you look Manny Balestrero up, there are many interesting articles on this family man who was wrongly accused.


Joyfully Cutting the Cable! 

loading ... Photo by Robert Stock

We have joyfully cut the cable and are thoroughly enjoying regular antenna television with our new Channel Master, we can dvr all of our favorite retro movies and programs along with Jem's old cowboy movies and programs and fast forward through commercials.   We receive now almost 60 digital stations and many are very wholesome programs, it's like going back in time in a very good way.  There is actually a better selection of wholesome programs on regular antenna television these days then what we were finding on cable.  We decided to study up on what regular antenna television offered when our bill suddenly went up to over a hundred dollars a month!

With the Channel Master we can dvr movies and shows such as Donna Reed and many others!  I love seeing Donna Reed with her menu planning and sewing machine along with her wonderful doctor husband who makes house calls and works out of their home!  Oh what a wonderful time in the country!

The people at Channel Master have been very helpful on questions on taping programs etc.  Very prompt and polite in answering our questions.  We highly recommend! If your family likes to relax in the evening perhaps catching Ed Sullivan or an old black and white movie this is really great.  We love watching a program, just us two or with our youngest, it makes a lot of great conversation as we watch together.  The Channel Master also provides the on screen channel programming schedule that I was afraid I would miss without cable. 

And may I say that my kitchen radio with conservative commentators fills me in just fine on the politics and straight up news of our day concerning a Christian as myself.


Spring has Sprung at the Forest Cathedral!

One Afternoon... 

Here at the Forest Cathedral one morning...  Hear the birds?

I hope you all are having a nice spring time.  I've been busying myself with reading good books, sewing some Little Dresses for Africa, sewing a few skirts for myself... making some cloth homemade napkins in a 50s dark green cotton, not perfect but cute, quaint and retro.

The World Goes Round...

loading ...  Photo by Robert Stock

 ...And the world goes round right?   In the evening as I hit the setting button on my hair dryer I feel like deja vu, it's like night to night here we are again!   I place my navy tennis shoes on top of my shoe rack ready for the next day...and deja vu, it's that time for my evening routine again.

Strange at times, it seems like yesterday my girls were little playing outside...So very strange.  I can even relate to my grandparents remembering their quiet routines in life, I even think of my dad telling me of his suppers he would make for himself and I recall his good attitude.

When I'm in smalltown at the store I see older vets, some are even from WWII and they have wonderful attitudes I see the older ladies with silver hair and their good attitudes as well, ..and I think that is GREAT. It does my heart good!

I spend quite a bit of time with God, in the car, in the forest, wondering how long lost friends are doing, even blogging friends who I no longer hear from and some I still do, one precious couple is like family to us.


Photos to Share

I stumbled across this photo of me with my precious little dog Esther, who we lost several years ago, she was also one of my sweet coffee-babies, such a precious little gal, a roly poly lambikin!

Here is a cute pic of Muffie, our littlest fur angel at present, he was found on the street by Marianna our daughter probably over ten years ago in our old subdivision. Our youngest, Rebecca was still skipping rope then...Oh my gosh, life is so crazy the way it goes on...So fast!  It's that old earth going round and round!

Gracie with Coffee very soon after we lost Charlie. I thought this really portrayed the emotion felt that week, animals are sentient beings.  In Proverbs it tells us to take good care of animals, and I love doing so, let us consider this in all things.

See this beautiful white lab mix?  This is our grand-doggy!  Michelle and Josh have a small home and we babysat their dog, Liesl while Baby Asher made his arrival and the next few weeks...  As I observed this precious doggy running with Gracie through the forest and taking swims Jem and I both knew she must stay with her grandhoomans.  So now Gracie  has a new running buddy here at the Forest!  Liesl is a sweetie and a vibrant, energetic ball of energy full of love!

I snapped this as I was walking out to the car..."We'll be back Liesl!"

Liesl and Gracie taking a vivacious swim together!

Alert and elegant Gracie...

Silly Carefree Happy Gracie...

The Finale!  Our Little Pumpkin! 

And of course our first grandbaby, Asher Samuel.  Doesn't he look like a little doll we would see at the store?  Bath time for Baby!

I love his little lips...So cute.

Content and Happy Little Baby.

I just took the last two the other day, his mommy, our daughter, Michelle invited me to go to the store with her, so I quickly snapped these catching his sweet smile.  This baby is a miracle baby, Michelle had been so ill she wasn't sure how long it would be before she would be able to have a baby and here is our little miracle!

Here are some reminders for us in closing...

Trust God from the bottom of your heart; don't try to figure out everything on your own.  Listen for God's voice in everything you do, everywhere you go; he's the one who will keep you on track.
Proverbs 3:5-6


 If you believe in a God who controls the big things, you have to believe in a God who controls the little things.  It is we, of course, to whom things look "little" or "big."
~Elisabeth Elliot

Teach me, Father, to value each day, to live, to love, to laugh, to play.
 ~Kathi Mills

Joy cannot be pursued.  It comes from within.  It is a state of being.  It does not depend on circumstances, but triumphs over circumstances.  It produces a gentleness of spirit and a magnetic. personality.
~Billy Graham

Teach us to count the days...Teach us to make the days count...Every day is a journal page, what will we compose?  Thinking of these words from the Chris Rice song.

Love,   ~Amelia at My Forest Cathedral

Monday, March 4, 2019

Our New Little Sweet Pea! An Angel!

Getting things accomplished isn't nearly as important as taking time for love.             ~Janette Oke 

Our first little grandbaby, a precious little grandson has made his arrival!  What a precious little angel...
 Asher Samuel 

Our daughter, Michelle with her first baby, our first grandchild, Asher Samuel.  Such a precious little baby!  Our son in love, Josh (proud daddy) took the photo.   Baby Asher is such a sweet, sweet little baby, he smiles and coos when he sleeps, I say he sees angels...

The last month has been a month full of turny-twisty days, phone by my side waiting on the phone call, several days of calls and checks and texts and waiting, during the day, the middle of the night... But great thankfulness to God for a safe delivery and healthy, healthy little baby!

Not every day of our lives is overflowing with joy and celebration.  But there are moments when our hearts nearly burst within us for the sheer joy of being alive.  The first sight of our newborn babies, the warmth of love in another's eyes, the fresh scent of rain on a hot summer's eve---moments like these renew in us a heartfelt appreciation for life.    ~Gwen Ellis

The birds are singing and trees are blooming....

Jem and I took a little day trip the other day...So fun.  A day to unwind...

We do not need to search for heaven, over here or over there, in order to find our eternal Father.In fact, we do not even need to speak out loud, for through we speak in the smallest whisper or the most fleeting thought, He is close enough to hear us.    ~Teresa of Avila

The close to all who call on Him sincerely.    Psalm 145:17-18


I was wondering what I could do to bless friends who read here, so I thought maybe one of my personal recipes?  Would you like one of my recipes?  It's a nice cozy one to serve any time of the year!

This makes a nice light, soup type of pasta dish - bowl.  My Grandma and Grandpa Oddo would have loved this...You could serve this dish (bowl) with a crusty bread and a green salad.  Many evenings I simply serve this dish with some good fresh, crisp crackers from the pantry.  Jem loves Italian cheese sprinkled over the top.  My grandparents would have too...  My grandma was from Naples, Italy.  My grandpa was from Bisaquino, Sicily. 

Amelia's Heartwarming Pasta Bowl


1 16 oz.bag of frozen asparagus spears, our store has the asparagus tips cut into small pieces.

1 16 oz. bag of frozen spinach

3 - 4 cloves of garlic sliced.

1 jar of pasta gravy. I use tomato basil flavor, the store brand with no more then 3 grams of sugar  per serving. (Important!)   Many brands have far too much sugar and my Grandpa Oddo would have thrown it out the window!  lol  The Oddo family did not do sweet pasta gravy.  I sometimes can't believe what gets passed over as authentic. (Not quite sure what part of Italy some came from!)  Ha! 

Olive oil

1 Tablespoons dried basil

A small pinch of dried red pepper

Sprinkle of garlic powder

1 cube of 'Not-Chick'n Cubes',  I buy these from Vitacost. These cubes really fill out many a soup.

1 bag or box of pasta, I use gluten free spaghetti, (I break mine in half like my grandma did).

Here we go:

Saute garlic on low in a generous amount of olive oil, only until fragrant.  If it browns the flavor changes and tends to be bitter.  So don't do that!  My grandma would shake her head at you! 

Pour the jar of pasta gravy in with another jar filled with water.  Bring to boil, pour in bag of spinach and asparagus.  Add dried basil and that very small pinch of dried red pepper, garlic powder along with the veggie bouillon cube. When your veggies are done you can serve ladled over pasta.

Serve the soup over cooked pasta in a soup bowl and you will say...  Bravissimo!

This makes a nice size 4 quart pot of soup. 

Possible add-ins:  You may add a can of Bush's butter beans drained and rinsed if you like.  You may also substitute artichoke hearts for the asparagus and even add rinsed black olives.

How much of our lives daily.  How often our hours are filled with the mundane, seemingly unimportant things that have to be done, whether at home or work.  These very "daily" tasks could become a celebration of praise.  "It is through consecration," someone has said, "that drudgery is made divine." 

~Gigi Graham Tchividjian


I'll close with this most beautiful, beautiful song by Andrea Bocelli and his son...Fall on Me.
Appropriate yes?  Yes.

Did you know Andrea Bocelli is a prolife advocate?  I think this song is just beautiful...A father-son duet.  At Christmas tbn produced a beautiful Christmas special in the Bocelli home in italy. I do believe it was one of our favorite Christmas specials.  PBS is running a Bocelli special and it is just breathtaking.


Edit. 3.5.19   As I listen to this song, I think of the Father and how we, his children can fall on Him.  Andrea Bocelli's care for his son is very similar to our relationship with our Father in Heaven, a very personal one.  His son Matteo also has such a sweet and ongoing response to his father.  We too can walk with our Father and talk with Him...  

What constitutes Success?  She has achieved success who has lived well; laughed often and loved much; who has gained the respect of intelligent people and the love of little children; who has filled her niche and accomplished her task; who has left the world better than she found it;...who has never lacked appreciation of earth's beauty, or failed to express it; who has always looked for the best in others and given the best she had.     ~Bessie Stanley

God's blessings to All,       ~Amelia

Tuesday, January 29, 2019

Oh Charlie, We Will Miss You, Our Beautiful Little Dog...My Little Coffee Buddy

It's with a grieved heart to have to blog on something that has recently and suddenly broken our hearts.  We lost our precious little dog, Charlie very, very late, the night of the 17th.  That very morning I awoke to a severely injured little dog.  It appears he was attacked by a coyote that night or early morning, the wounds had all the marks of a coyote, it was horrible. Neither Jem nor I noticed that Charlie hadn't followed us into our room the night before, and it had never been a problem before.

We rushed our little Charlie to the vet and the vet did what he could.  Charlie came back home with us as we watched and waited... When I went to bed I had a funny feeling, even though Charlie was walking around, he was unsettled he would walk and lay down, walk and lay down, he lay under the lit up Christmas tree of all places on the white sheet I used as a Christmas tree skirt. Yes, that happened and yes my tree was unapologetically up, I had a lot going on.  That night before I went to bed, Charlie's eyes told me something.

Jem and I miss our Charlie so much.  Just so very much, and the thought of how he suffered that day is just haunting to us.  I have to just close my eyes and pause.
Charlie in his little wicker bed in our room as Gracie looks after him.
Gracie keeping watch over Charlie after we arrived home from the vet's office.  Gracie was nuzzling Charlie and being so motherly and sweet, animals are such sentient beings.  Little angels.  We had to keep boxes under our bed there because poor little Charlie had wanted to try to hide under our bed, we thought we would never get him out.  My husband, Jem could hardly read this blog by the way it is such an emotional thing for he and I both.

 This is Charlie just a month or so ago, it was the morning hours, I was spending time with God and I looked across the room to see my sweet little dreamie Charlie gazing at me from across the room...

Charlie was a character, such a happy little dog with a dramatic side to him as well, as we would sometimes call him Carlos after the character in the old movie, 'A Man Called Godfrey'.

 Charlie's Story

We were so blessed to have had Charlie for over twelve years at least...  We had lost our sweet dog, Minnie Pearl and the following week we saw in the local paper, Charlie's face with a little bandana around his neck. He had the same little eyebrows as Minnie Pearl.

When our youngest, Rebecca saw the photo she said, Oh mommy we have got to go get him!  Just the thought of Rebecca being so little girl like is sobering.  Jem, Rebecca and I went to the animal shelter, back then known as the pound.  Rebecca had in her still little girl hand a lavender envelope soft with handling...It was wrinkled and it contained all of her birthday money, it was going to cost $65.00 to adopt Charlie and that is what Rebecca did.  When Rebecca saw Charlie tears rolled down Rebecca's face and she said through the tears...I love him...

I remember leaning down to pet Charlie when he first became part of our family and the little guy would wince, it broke my heart.  Apparently whoever had had him before was not very kind to him, but gradually Charlie knew he could trust our hands and he knew we loved him and would never hurt him ever.  He was safe with us! 


Charlie had become my little sit-next-to-me buddy since little Guiseppe died in November.  Charlie had been my special little coffee buddy for a couple of years now, I awake many times at 5am in the morning and usually Charlie follows me out of our room into the kitchen as I would say...Charlie?  Are you my coffee-buddy?  I would reach down and pet that little head full of curly silver locks...  It was a comfort and company for me.  It could be the middle of the night and Charlie would get up with me trotting right by my side.

One morning in the past couple of weeks I noticed he stayed in the living room with the larger dogs, Gracie and Coffee.  There was some wildlife out there they were intrigued by and they would go galavanting around exiting the dog door.  I didn't think too terribly much about it because Gracie is such a protector and usually Charlie is the Louie Zamparini of our dogs, he would quick as a wink grab a water moccasin in his mouth and shake it to it's end without a hitch.  He was just an amazing beautiful little dog who thought he was ten feet tall.

Many days I would call out to Charlie when he was outdoors as I held my hands up to cheer him on....Charlie!  Great and mighty wonder of  the wooooorrrrrld!!!   Charlie had adopted that title from our precious pitbull, Buddy who we lost several years ago.

He was Jem's buddy too, when Jem would hop into the Mule, his all terrain vehicle, Charlie would sit by his side.  When I took trips into town to say the auto mechanic, Charlie would hop on in with me, just so happy...such a happy little dog and he loved riding in cars with us.  He always wanted to go to the grocery store with us and I was always so sad to leave him standing there, but I would promise him a treat when we got back.  I would always say...Don't worry Charlie, we'll be back, we'll be back...  When I did come back he would be running in his cute little way up the driveway to greet me...And yes, treats were waiting for all of our fur angels.

When my dad came to visit over five years ago Charlie had jumped into his lap and my dad just loved Charlie.  Charlie was also my mom's favorite dog.  Everyone loved Charlie.

This photo was taken just a couple of weeks ago, he was napping next to me on the couch as I was texting my daughter, Michelle.  I was laughing hysterically, even slapping my knee because of something I thought was so funny and he looked up at me so cute here...

We very recently had a flood in the area and were out scouting around and Charlie was just so enjoying his ride with us.   Best day ever.

Here are a couple videos Jem took of Charlie and Gracie, there was a water bird tormenting the heck out of them.   What is in these short videos is so very typical...  so cute the way Charlie would amuse himself at the pond many a day.  He would just have a ball galloping about the pond chasing after turtles hopping in the water and the like.

You can see Charlie at full right watching the pond.  He and Gracie were pals.
 Such happy little dogs....


When we first moved out here I would go to the back of the property and spend time with God, and Charlie would be right there with me just enjoying the day...He just loved being with me.

This was very common for Charlie...Just contentedly laying in a bed or on a couch, sometimes the foot of our bed...just resting and taking it all in...Wherever he would go or follow he would get his little paws, (he stood like a ballerina) and he would burrow and dig into the fabric or rug getting perfectly comfortable.


The day we discovered Charlie had passed to the other side...It was a cruel thing for me to have to go about cleaning the evidence of our suffering little fur angel...So.  Hard.   I felt as if I was the only person left in the world.  


That evening I was walking around the house, trying so hard to do the next thing as Elisabeth Elliott suggested years ago...Thinking of Charlie, my dad, Guiseppe....Buddy... Esther....You name it...   Praying.  Praying hard.

I sat in one of our recliners and in a mindless effort I put this movie on from the list...   The Men of Boys Town.   

God spoke to me strongly through this scene at 3:37 of the movie.   I love the part of Father Flanagan, I do believe the character of Father Flanagan portrayed in this movie is truly like God's character.  I taped a capsule scene of the movie containing one important part...Perhaps I am a cross between Pee Wee and Ted in these times...  The entire capsule here contains elements of life for all of us. 

Father Flanagan:  Ted you've stood so much pain do you think you can stand a lot  more?  

Ted:  Why doesn't somebody else have to stand it?!

Father Flanagan:  Everybody does have to go through pain Ted, some seem to have more to endure then others and you're one of them I can't tell you why either unless it's... suffering seems to forge such a fine man that in the end you'll be better then the rest of us...

Father Flanagan:  It is the time when Giants will walk again on the land.  Be staunch, keep the faith...And you will walk among the giants.   God bless you.

Life is much like the movie above,  I do recommend the movie, 'Men of Boys Town' by the way, for many reasons.  Oh such a different time in our country.

I cling to God and I cling to the old ways. May we walk among the giants as we hold unto God's loving Hand. May we be that Ted as he walks in the end cradled by the Father.  

Hear the little boys singing?  It's a beautiful thing...Isn't it Charlie?


Be kind to people, we don't know what that visitor has gone through.  


Tuesday, December 18, 2018

Christmas Memories and Clips to Delight and Ponder

I really wanted to get these clips up to share with you dear Readers!  I hope you will enjoy them, be touched and amused by them as we were.


This is so sweet, this short movie made in 1945 reminds me very much of my Italian grandparents, the Oddos.  This movie short won an academy award.

My husband watched this and loved it today.  When it was over he was teary eyed. You see, it really is the way many Italians were.  ...And we remember.  : )

A Star in The Night  (1945)  

This is a picture of me and my precious, precious Grandpa Oddo. We often shared our birthdays near New Years as pictured here.  He was one of the sweetest things ever.  He had sung in the opera when a young man in New York.  He was discovered when he was hanging his laundry on the line in the city there, a lady from the opera was walking down the street and heard him.  He later returned to our great southern state to the city here to be with his Italian mother who had arrived and then came to the waterfront where he loved it so, I guess you could call him the Great Caruso on the bay, he did what he loved most.  A shrimper with his own boat on the bay, the family had a fishing camp with boats they would rent out, and a little store attached to their home. Grandpa was happy just being there.  Precious, precious man. 

Today I was thinking of their home and the sweet simplicity as I was making a New Orleans red bean soup, faglioli style with pasta.  As I move in my kitchen doing this and that, cutting and creating the art, I thought of my Grandma Oddo. ...Oh I wish I still had her too.  : ) 

Here's another:

Dominick the Donkey   by Lou Monte

It's just not an Italian Christmas without Dominick the Donkey!

A darling blast from the past:

A Visit to Santa   (1952)

On youtube it states1963 but on Turner Classics the info states 1952. This was so neat I thought; the old cars, the way the children are dressed, such a sweet innocence.  The sweet dollies and toys.  At the end St. Nicholas has quite the wonderful reminder of the true Christmas, our Savior's birth. My husband was also fascinated with this reel wonder, it is sooo the way it was.

Meet John Doe  (1941)  -Ending-

This is just wow.  Love this... (spoiler warning)

At 3:37 you will hear some very poignant words.  This movie is one of those Frank Capra greats.  Most all of Frank Capra movies are greatness.

Frank Capra was from the same village my grandpa was from; Bisaquino, Sicily.   The Oddo family is mentioned in one of the Capra biographies.

You don't have to die to keep it alive. Someone already died for that once...The first John Doe and He's kept that idea alive for nearly 2000 years...

And last but not least, that famous speech from It's a Wonderful Life. (1946)
You tell'em George...

I tried to find the raw and emotional real prayer scene where Jimmy Stewart actually wept over mankind at the bar but I was unable to find on youtube.  I actually had Christian tracts on that scene and would place them in my Christmas cards and unfortunately was not able to find more.

This scene is a good one though...It reminds me of my husband in his real estate company, helping the common man in an old town.  We want to be George Baileys in life, not Mr. Potters.

Have a sweet Christmas week.  I'm having fun being funny at times...

 Left some treats for delivery friends, so fun:

...and also having quiet Peace in my heart as I celebrate true Christmas in my heart...Jem took this the other evening when he took me out to dinner. 


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Praying for a Peaceful Christmas for all, and may we carry in our hearts and spirits the good things that those precious ones before us taught us so beautifully as they traveled this earth, their hearts meshed with ours, now more then ever...May the Holy Spirit of Christ dwell among us as we sense that Holy Presence of Christ in the stillness.

God be with you all this most wondrous Christmas season, 
  ~ Amelia