Thursday, August 30, 2012

A Rhapsody in Blue (sky) Morning! Dogs and Patch Realness

Every day is a journal page, what will we compose?

The music, Rhapsody in Blue by Gershwin was actually playing from the brewed as I stood there quite amused with the entire scenario; The music sounds just like cows trotting along!..Mr. Lundy's cows coming to pay a visit with their sweet eat breakfast of course. Rhapsody in Blue? Yes! Isn't that a hoot! The girls had checked the cd out from the library and we were having fun listening to it. Love the library for music! When we are tight on a budget? The library! When we aren't tight on money? The library! At least we can see if we like an album before we purchase it. Another thing to save money? Bar soaps! I use the above $1.99 inexpensive peppermint glycerine soap in the kitchen laying on a sponge, it lasts forever too.

Hi Mommy Cow...

"No matter how little money and how few possessions you own, having a dog makes you rich."
~Louis Sabin

Muffie is amused as well and wants to say Hey to the Mommy cow...

Muffie was rescued from a busy intersection by Mar over four years ago on primary day as she went to vote. This little guy's collar was rusted shut he had been out in the elements for so long. He is a darling.

Charlie. Becs rescued Charlie from the pound with her birthday money after our Minnie Pearl passed away. He is very sensitive, his eyes tell it all. They all are sensitive actually...

Esther. Little Esther was bought by Mar with graduation money. She is so cute, she talks.

Giusseppe. Giusseppe was rescued from the street in our neighborhood, he was found wondering around by his lonesome, cataracts in eyes. We treat his eyes with homeopathic drops. What a sweetie pie angel.

My pets are a gift from God. When I was a little girl, an only child... I always wanted dogs and cats in our house with me, but my mom was not a dog or cat person, she said they had to be outside pets. I believe God moves in mysterious and wonderful ways in our lives at later times. As a little girl I would have literal dreams of having little dogs and kittens like this for my very own in my house. Today when I look at my sweet pet angels, I know they are from GOD.

"A house is not a home until it has a dog."
~Gerald Durrell

The mornings, our ritual....Our doglets and I go outside to pray, talking to the good Lord.

We see:

I thought it was so interesting that the spider web shown so nicely in the morning sun, it's like us. If we are in the sun (Son) we shine too and reflect His Light.

The view from the porch...Giuseppe is trotting right along.

One of the mommy cows decided to meander around and take a refreshment from our giant blue punch bowl. Hubs found some neat natural blue coloring for our pond so it would be "pretty".


Evening Time

That evening, Hubs is into his comfy clothes.

Everyone say hello to Hubs, his patched pants? We decided it would be worth a try for me to hand patch them the old fashioned way so Hubs can finish them out good and proper before buying new ones. I had an old unflattering denim split skirt handed down from a neighbor...and I took the scissors to it. As Eva on the Opulent Poppy blog says:

"Nothing says love like hand-sewn patches!"
(The Opulent Poppy)

Let me hear from anyone who reads here. How do you save money in your home? What are your simple pleasures, do have special things that God has brought forth in your life? Little things that only you and God know????

This post has been linked to Frugal Friday at LifeasMom.

Let me know. I don't want this blog to be a bragblog but just a "this is my house" blog. This is the way we live. A come have coffee with me kind of blog...

My simple pleasure for today is sitting next to Becs and helping her with some Consumer Math.

She says she's going to throw her math out the window and be math illiterate! Ha! I tell her most artists aren't exactly math people... ; )

True Confession: My post below, the bookcase shelf. The one with Minnie Pearl's collar. I put the collar shot up with the least dust showing. The shelves need dusting ....bad. : )

Life is not intended to be simply a round of work, no matter how interesting and important that work may be. A moment's pause to watch the glory of a sunrise or a sunset is soul satisfying, while a bird's song will set the steps to music all day long. ~Laura Ingalls Wilder

Love to All, ~Amelia

Monday, August 27, 2012

Quiet Times

It's me, just thought I'd share a quiet Saturday. At least it was quiet in my room...We had our sweet friend, Artimio and his helper here helping us work on our kitchen to get some things done so I hunkered down in my room mending my favorite green tweed jacket. This poor little jacket fits so well, to a 't' and it sat all by it's lonesome in my closet all last year because of some pesky snags. Yes, the poor thing needed a little surgery via needle, thread & scissors which I was glad to perform this most quiet Saturday...The music? The theme soundtrack to 'To Kill a Mockingbird' by Leonard Bernstein.

See the finished product above? Yes, and it's almost time for dinner. Hmmmm...I do believe we are going to have to use a gift card for a restauranti. See the Duncan Phyfe chaire? It's from my mother's dinette set I grew up with.

I still heard banging and sawing etc. so I decided to snap some shots around my little room

I thought I'd get a shot of hubs portrait from his school days. Cute isn't it? See the old book jacket, "To Kill a Mockingbird" I had let Becs borrow the book part and another one of my favorite books, 'Last Child in the Woods'. A great book by the way, God used this book to help us to make the decision to move here.

Minnie Pearl's collar. This makes me sad, I loved my sweet Minnie Pearl dog. I've kept it on my bookshelf for years. Yes, it made the move from the last house to here. The day she passed away, I awoke to our poodle, Esther barking trying to tell me something. On the way home from the vet's Minnie was smiling at me knowing I was taking care of her. Breaks my heart. It breaks. my. heart. My dad always cried for his dog, also named Minnie Pearl. My dad loves animals and my uncle was on his way to be a vet, a degree in animal husbandry and on to vet school. But a huge hurricane hit my grandparents family business and it's a long story...He would have made a wonderful vet. Life is funny like that. When I was a little girl, Uncle Bennie would come over and take care of my puppies, taking their temperature. He would tell me in his nice gentle Elvis Presley voice..."I hear you have a sick puppy?" The many paperbacks are Grace Livingstone Hill books, a sweet voice of Christian fiction when men were men and ladies were ladies. The message of salvation in Jesus is woven through each.

I'm a bit of a creative messy, but I'm working on it. : ) See my clutter free book? That's been in more than several homes. It's kind of ironic, a clutter free book on a cluttered bookshelf. Yep, life is funny like that.

The top of my bookcase? These figurines are from my grandma's house. The pretty lady figurine is a music box hubby bought me when we lived here in the area before. It's from the old, old jewelry store in Smalltown.

On my dresser, an old Gregory Peck shot that will be framed and hung in our guest bathroom. I'm doing a grouping of old stars and 40s movies. I also have an original framed page from an old magazine from WWII advertising Greer Garson and Walter Pidgeon in 'Madame Curie'...The ad on the back about ice cream for our soldiers is just amazing. My dressmaker tape and my eyeglass case. As flylady says, I think this is a 'hotspot' that needs to be put out and put away. In other words, frame that photo and hang it up. Anti-procrastination day this week?

Last but not least, this is a pencil drawing of myself I had done in highschool from a tiny snapshot of me on our front steps holding my little dog, "Cutie". I loved Cutie. I would dress him up like a baby and put him in my baby carriage. My dad ended up bringing him to the waterfront with him at his Gulf gas station on the bay for boats, life was wonderful then. Life is funny, and some things never change and I'm glad about those sweet things.

Well, Hubs says it's time to get going...yes Dear. I'm dressed, yep, make up is on. I'm ready as I'll ever be.

Great love in Christ, ~Amelia

Monday, August 20, 2012

An Introspective Eve

A wee bit over a week ago, life was puttering along one eve. Tiredness was setting in as an old friend who embraces and begs us to sit a ponder the day's work and thoughts and goings ons...

We had found out this eve that both Howard and Mr. Raymond had passed away and I think these pics reflect the quiet contemplative mood that evening...

So what did we do? So what do you do? As Elizabeth Elliot says...

"Just do the next thing"

For us, that meant a nice quiet, leisurely walk.

The trees seemed a little forlorned, sad, almost weepy.

I look down and I catch the view from here so to speak...Rubber boots were the thing for a wet post-rainy eve. I'm ready to walk and talk with God, sometimes Hubs and I just walk, quietly walk, we don't say much but sometimes we do say much...this evening we didn't say much...Except...I can't believe Mr. Raymond is gone, we were just going to go visit him.

We get to the back of the property and the sky is agreeing with us in mood.

Let's get on back, we approach our house...

... and our littlest doglet of them all, Muffie is so cute. He is so darling running excitedly, he made a show of sorts running in circles, we call him "Mighty Dog" at times like this. If I'm feeling blue I can look at one of my doglets and the innocence ministers to my soul straight from God. It's as if a little child looked up smiling. So darling.

Home is here...the cozy light in the window beckons....The girls are in the kitchen doing a sweet cleanup after sup. That too is a gift from God. One I don't take for granted. They are sweet girls, each with their own unique personality and tastes but equally pointed to the Lord.

Clean up time...Hubs side of the vanity, his sink. He installed these squares of granite and the sinks himself.

For me? And to all a goodnight.

The following days the funeral visitation was so sweet. I was able to hold Cathy's hands and she tells me...I loved that man...I loved that man...We were married for 59 years and I would do it all over again. I tell her, I know you did Cathy...You have the consolation of knowing you were such a good wife Cathy. She looks at our girls over my shoulder, they are crying handkerchiefs in hands. Those tears spoke multitudes to her I'm sure...Just little girls when Mr. Raymond and Mrs. Raymond (Cathy) were new friends of ours, such a sweet closeness to our little girls. I only started calling Mrs. Raymond, Cathy after several years of friendship. She would tell me to call her that...I remember calling her on the phone and sharing my heart on some things and she would share a hymn with me, such a sweet attitude always. Our homes were both flooded twice by the river and she was so sweet, her attitude was just unbelievably just so very sweet...I remember being devastated, our family boating out in a leaky little row boat with my baby Michelle in my arms. The next flood? I boated out with a little baby Rebecca in my arms. Life is funny like that. I looked up at the trees admiring the reflection in the river water...thinking I would make the best of it, I would admire the beauty of it all as God would want me to and praise Him. I also remember laying on my bed with my rubber boots on, muddy river water swirling around my bed, a small square piece of paper floated next to the floating bedskirt. What is that? I asked as I picked the little square paper up out of the muddy water...It was an ultra sound photo of my baby Rebecca. I remember being so stunned, the tragedy, one of several really hit. So many things happen in our lives, these things cause brokeness, and I believe there will be those we will have that companionship of brokeness with.

Thank you sweet girls who left such kind comments, I've been so awol lately, just a lot of upkeep on things lately in different ways, spiritual and physical. It's me in my prayer submarine though, the last child in the woods.

Great Love in Christ, Amelia

"God's far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will keep your thoughts and your hearts quiet and at rest."

Phil. 4:7 tlb From my kitchen flip calendar

Friday, August 10, 2012

Two Sweet Friends Have Crossed Over to the Other Side. Howard and Raymond.

Howard recently passed away, we found out yesterday night. As volunteers we are not told these things due to privacy policies so we have to call the home to inquire simply asking if they are there...and this time they tell us, he is not there.

We just saw him several weeks ago, I had told him it didn't matter what church we go to as long as we have a personal relationship with Jesus...He is so cute and matter of fact....He tells me: "I'm glad to hear you say that." We tell him we love him and I adjust his gown again...Bye Howard...We love you Howard..

He told us we could take his picture this time. This is Li-Li and Howard recently.

My blog from last June on our sweet friend, Howard: Our Sweet Friend, Be Still and Know

Here's Delle and Howard, Delle would go visit him on her way to work sometimes. Howard didn't have children, he had never been married. He and Delle had a special little relationship, so sweet. I had seen Delle rush to him several months ago after we had all sang...That little gal knows how to rush when necessary. I've seen it in her several times in emergencies. Something just clicks in with her and she thinks fast and moves it.

I had just told Howard to say special prayers for Delle and Mar as they were in china, and lots going on. He assured me he would pray. He assured me. he. would. pray.


On another note, we were coming home late the other night from some very close friends'. The drive had been way too long for this late at night and sleepy eyed we had passed Mr. Raymond and Cathy's home in our area. It was strange, it was close to 1am and all the lights were on in their home. Usually it's dark and you can see a family of deer sleeping in a grove of grass in their backyard in the moonlight...But not this night. Every light was on in the house, more than several cars were outside.

We found out yesterday night Mr. Raymond also passed away. We were going to visit Raymond this weekend. Raymond and his wife Cathy would bring our family dinners when I was on bedrest with Becs...He called the birth center repeatedly when I was in labor, he cried at church in Sunday school describing his care for our family... and little baby Becca.

We were just laughing and joking with him last year, we had a ball with he and Cathy at a homeschool graduation party. You see, elderly Mr. Raymond thought we were weird back when, because we were homeschoolers. ; ) We had to prove ourselves to him back then.... Our little girls quickly became as grandchildren to him.

He asked me at the homeschool graduation party: What made you move back here to the country? Me: Oh...a little older and wiser now....I smile my big toothy grin at him and he looks to his plate knowingly. He laughed and told me how I used to make fun of redneck people in Smalltown (My bad totally).. Makes me ashamed now how stupid I was then, how I thought the grass was greener in the suburbs. What a joke that was...Now I'm back but Mr. Raymond is gone, life is crazy.

What had happend to Mr. Raymond?

An operation went bad, the effects eventually caught up with Mr. Raymond.

Life is so very strange at times.

What is stranger is so many people be-bop around as if none of this means a thing. Whether it's the twitter cyberworld where people ho-hum...she lost two people this week. Or neighborhood people rushing about to earn popularity points....there is something wrong these days I do believe.

What is right in the world? There truly is a remnant of people who love the Lord and love others and show it. There may not be many, but they are sprinkled throughout our world. If we have the special blessing of crossing paths, then it is just that: A Blessing.

May we be the Mr. Raymond's who care for others and show it.

I miss you already Mr. Raymond. I'll see you on the other side...

Love, Amelia

Monday, August 6, 2012

Our Girls Are Back! Me in my Prayer Submarine, Weekend Happenings and All that Jazz...

(Was) Listening to: Love is the Thing and More by Nat King Cole...the best cd ministers to my heart actually.

Now just finished To Kill a Mockingbird theme...I feel much like Scout today...Humming by myself like a little girl in my own world today. I really did feel like Scout today.

Earlier a sweet walk with hubs after our dinner...A nice Italian rosemary, white bean and broccolli soup over sauteed brown rice w/onion and a tomato basil bread from Phoenicia and some wonderful garlic ciabatta bread made by Delle.

Thought I would update a bit...My girls are back from overseas!!!!!!!!! Welcome home Mar Mar and Delle!!!!!!!!!

Mar Mar and Becs, Becs was sooooo glad to have her big sisters back. Is this not precious?

Becs making some wonderful blueberry pancakes for a big "Welcome Home" breakfast.

Delle and Mar Mar just arriving enjoying the sweet decorations Li LI and Becs put up!

Becs made this free hand, she just sat down and put her scissors to work in her artist hands, she didn't even draw it first...Just cut, cut, cut and there ya have it! : ) Isn't this sweet???

So full of joy, and may I say I've been underwater in my praying submarine for the past several of months at least. For those of you I owe notes, even prayerful blog articles...I have not forgotten. It's just been the praying submarine mom has been paralyzed in prayers in my submarine for a while now...The preparation for overseas was unbelievable. Many other things too to pray about in this mom's praying submarine. I'll be coming up for air don't worry. : ) Ya know? We have to go under water in our praying submarines a foot or two while the questions of life and the treacherous waters go over us. Yes, in this season of life many life questions are whirling around not to mention two girls overseas in an unknown country.

So many powerful and touching accounts told by my daughters. They were in china teaching english. The prayerful teaching team taught the Bible to classes of around 40 - 60+ highschool students per class as a history lesson. : ) miraculously approved by officials. The students were so beautiful as they repeated the story of Christ reading their lesson back to my daughter(s) in each classroom. My daughters tell me they were speechless and in tears hearing these students recite their "history" lesson. Other teachers on the team also felt that same lump in their throat as well. Young men as well relay the very same feeling being so choked up they were made to pause. It's so beautiful, the students clapped after the Story was told of the resurrection. One young lady told my daughter, "Now I know that it was God who created the world". There are odd stories too, one night I had had a very black, dark, nightmare. I found later there was a situation of two way mirrors, strange phones etc. in an old hotel they stayed one night. (the same night as my nightmare). Many odd stories and many pleasant stories of graciousness as well. And then other stories are so adorable, so full of our Savior. On one visit in previous years a team member shared...a precious man cried so hard, harder then our team member had ever seen someone ever, ever cry, when he learned of the team's visit that year. He had been praying for years for brothers and sisters to come and bring our special Book, he had been in prison and his wife had died in prison. I hope to share more in the future...You can see why this mom has been in such intense prayers? So out of it for more than several months now? So many intense things in lives...

This past weekend was a busy one, when it rains it pours! Homeschool convention, the big one and it was very nice indeed. Lots of good books, the Lord speaking to my heart even through the exhibit hall. The beautiful Holy Spirit speaking to my heart. One thing I need to be careful of is time management...I need to be very in tune to the Holy Spirit on some things. Basically time is our currency. Every day is a journal page what will we compose?

We were able to attend my favorite homeschool church, worth the drive to see precious friends and hear a wonderful message from Dr. Jobe Martin, his daughters are so precious and godly acquaintences of our daughters. We were also able to meet up with another precious friend who came in from china just that morning. Just like family.

We attended a baby shower for our niece and it was nice. Ya know... I see so many women who are suffering. Many widows. One lady close to my sil's age, such a sweet, sweet beautiful woman... she always reminded me of my Mitzi doll from when I was little? Did any of you ladies have a Mitzi doll? We could dye her white-blonde hair colors with water color pens? She had this sweet face too, a neat little doll and she wasn't a "stick" like Barbie, she was normal. I liked Mitzi. This middle aged lady who looked like Mitzi was married to a handsome veterinarian. He was recently killed in an auto crash. I remember the last time I had seen Mitzi she was with her sweet husband and had brought a feast to my mil's home after my father in law's funeral.

Another most elegant and beautiful lady around my sil's age, she reminds me of a movie star, her mannerisms etc. Much like a very tiny, tiny Rosalyn Russell...30 Years ago I remember sitting in her most elegant but simple home as she gave my sil a baby shower for the now-mommy to be, I remember as a very young lady...this lady in her in a long purple satin belted tunic over black pants and high heels; her hair up, she was actually smoking a cigarette with an Audrey Hepburne (Tiffany) holder. I remember her holding the long cigarette in her sophisticated way saying...It's been a long time...Just imagine Rosalyn Russell saying it but add...darling to the end.... I'll never forget being fascinated as a young woman as she strolled over to her formal table with this simple modern, large glass vase filled with simple long stemmed flowers she had placed in it herself and how elegant it looked...It was as if she had stopped by the grocery store and whisked up a bunch of long stemmed flowers and threw them in the huge vase. *poof* Instant elegance as only this lady could have pulled off. Even her curtains were like that on the massive tall windows... Simple lace panels, long, long panels. Not gaudy, just an almost hand woven contemporary lace of sorts. I remember she had a little boy that walked through the home with a tennis outfit on... A few years later we received the news...Her husband was murdered in a horrible criminal case. This very same woman was so sweet to me as she strolled up to me at this recent shower and looks at me closely, soulfully with her gorgeous blue eyes, oh my goodness her eyes are so gorgeous...she tells me I am so pretty and how she remembers me from years ago....Please know, I don't say that as a backdoor compliment, it's the way she said it...She was so kind. So ministering to my soul. She was just so... very kind and ..broken...but still so lovely if not more so than years ago. God was using her. She was amazed to see our daughters there, you see, when I met her we weren't blessed with children yet, I was so young myself.

There were so many women with stories similiar, broken women. Two of my favorite cousin in laws beaconed me to come sit with them, I just love those two, so down to earth and lovely inside and out. As I sat there visiting with them, I learned one of them had lost her mother when she was only five years old ... the other, Virginia...She had lost her husband as she was carrying her first baby, she delivered alone but not alone because she had Jesus with her. Such faith.

As we left and I'm walking out with my 82 year old pretty mom in her ridiculously high wood platform shoes. I tell my mom she needs flats but she's from the old school that for dress-up you wear heels. My mom is probably the most simple down to earth lady ever, she's a Seabrook girl, not from the city but she has her own ideas on dress up... When it comes to the City-Italians, these women need to get real if you ask me. ; ) Now is no time for insecurities, that kind of thing makes me crazy. We run into a cousin and her mother in law, another 82 year old. She is wearing patent loafers and walking with a cane, she tells my niece that she used to wear super high heels like hers and jitter bug in them too! Ha! She is a gorgeous woman, another blue eyed Italian...She tells me her cane is just for attention and if I don't like her cane she was going to beat the * out of me with it. LOL I told my cousin, Judy .... I believe her! Ha!...I do!!!! : D

Me? You would be proud and I was proud of myself. I'm getting smart in my middle age yes I am. I wore my new cat eye glasses, I like'em and I wore'em. I pulled my hair to the side and clipped it in a messy pony tail and noooo hairspray. A simple black top belted with my chain belt, ankle length black cotton skirt, black strapped ballet flats, I could walk and talk, wear my beautiful pearls and scarf from china my sweet girls brought me and I was a happy girl. Yep, me and Aunt Maryann wore our glasses...Yep I like'em.

Happy in my skin....K.I.S.S. Keep it simple sweetie, it's plum luverly.

Pretty is is pretty does. Can't we just talk and laugh and stop the foolishness? It's just me, the Seabrook girl. Now the last child in the woods....

Signing off, Amelia at the Forest Cathedral. Take care All. I'm in my submarine in the woods. : )

Even the mommy and her calf were waiting on our girls that morning...I think this mommy totally understood me that morning... : )