Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Meet my Buddy

Meet my buddy, he is an angel. I wrote about him in the last entry and I told you all I would post our photo here when my daughter Marianna emailed it to me.

This was taken at the nursing home we go to to visit and make new friends. I've always liked for my children to have friends of all ages... In homeschooling we are so blessed to be able to do that.

Calvin here is a younger little guy as you'll read below, he is almost completely deaf and has a hard time speaking, bless his heart, he is an angel. The first time I met him he dug into his pocket and pulled out a business size card with his name, "Calvin" on it.

He's truly an angel to me! Look at this sweet face of his! When I go to see him, he now holds his cheek up for me to kiss and I kiss him upon that chubby cheek, and make a big Muah! sound. He's a love and just a little bit of Heaven.

If you think you have problems, and you feel hot under the collar about anything....Just see my precious buddy here. His beautiful innocent smile says it all. This past visit Marianna was playing the piano and I was dancing around lightly clapping my hands with him, it brought tears to my eyes. A fellow volunteer, a precious homeschool mom and I met eyes, I mouth Hi to her with a smile, looking at her through tear-filled eyes across the room...She smiles back and looks back through big blue understanding eyes...

Oh friends it's the simple things! The simple things! It's not the busy-things, no. If you want to make some nice friends of all ages who will really be friends and minister to you more than you minister to them? If you want to teach children compassion and mercy and let them see a glimpse into a true relationship with Jesus, living out salvation? To a forgotten mission field? A place where folks may step over to the other side and it may be just you to have the blessed privilege to whisper the sweet name of Jesus to them before they depart? I recommend the nursing home.

Marianna brought me a nice little book by Helen Steiner Rice yesterday, it's called A Book of Hope. It has all kinds of wonderful verses in it. I was feeling blue yesterday and this book was just the thing!

Blessings in Disguise by Helen Steiner Rice from A Book of Hope

God sends His little angels in many forms and guises.
They come as lovely miracles that God alone devises.
He does nothing without purpose, everything's in a plan
To fulfill in bounteous measure all He ever promised man.
For every little angel with a body bent and broken
Or a mind quite challenged or with little words unspoken
Is just God's way of trying to reach out and touch the hand
Of all who do not know Him and cannot understand
That often through an angel whose wings will never fly
The Lord is pointing out the way to His eternal sky,
Where there will be no handicaps of body, soul or mind
And where all limitations will be dropped and left behind.
So accept these little angels as gifts from God above,
And thank Him for this lesson in faith and hope and love.

I hope all is well with everyone, today we had a rain and that is nice. We've experienced quite a drought.

I hope you enjoyed meeting my buddy, Calvin. He loves Jesus too.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

The Things Life Is Made Of

Woke up this morning and went outside to pray on the front porch...I love the sound of a small airplane up in the sky with engine barreling. Our area is a playground for playful pilots.

When you read this part just imagine the opening of the 1962 movie, To Kill a Mockingbird, it describes my solitary childhood very much...a little girl drawing with her cigar box of crayons and such....

Here is the hauntingly beautiful theme.

Gregory Peck giving an introduction to the movie. It's so nice to hear his voice...Oh what a gentleman...What he describes here in the beginning is such a parallel to the way life was and in many ways still is for me. Is it any wonder I call Hubs and I, Jem and Scout on certain days now?

The barreling, gunning airplanes I hear here in the blue country skies remind me of when my dad used to fly for a hobby when I was a little girl, Mother was swinging me in a little toddler swing out on the green grass, she had a white sundress on, it had colorful flowers, green leaves and red flowers, multi primary colors, it was a 50s style waisted and belted dress with a full skirt, and she was wearing higher wedge heeled white slip on sandals. Usually she didn't dress up that much but that evening she was. I still have the dress and Rebecca uses it for photo shoots. Up above that evening was a little plane, we hear a man's voice bellowing down....


It was Daddy. : )

This morning it was nursing home day, as you can see above I donned my pearls, pulled my hair back in a ponytail threw my new skirt on and away we went ready to visit, minister and be ministered to.

I rather like this new skirt, it has fish on the border. The pattern reminds me of the old bathing suits from when I was a little girl, when they would make them out of cotton. I remember being out on the pier of a bayhome when I was little, my mother and her friends with their children at the end of the pier. I remember Natalie, her children and Barbara. Barbara was a particularly beautiful woman, she died of brain cancer soon after leaving little boys. It bothered me as a little girl thinking of that woman suffering like that. It still brings tears to my eyes, it didn't seem fair to leave her boys. I'm reading Catherine Marshall's book, To Live Again in bits and pieces...she has some interesting stories of people who have crossed over to Heaven in one of the chapters...Some returning after meeting God, but some leaving with such joy as they met their loved ones and God. One story was of a mother with several young children. She screamed and screamed in the hospital that she did not want to die. Her family gathered around. A doctor came in and gave her a shot of sedation medication, she slept for some time and awoke to her concerned and praying family. She told them:

"I'm sorry I acted so badly," she said. "Everything 's all right now. I've seen Dad. he came and told me that there's nothing to be afraid of . (Her dad had died several years before) I've seen Dad. He came and told me that there's nothing to be afraid of. He promised that he'd stay with me every minute and hold my hand. Don't worry about me. I'm all right now."

There were no more hysterics. That night the girl slipped over into the next life. There was a smile on her face and one hand was outstretched.
~ To Live Again, Catherine Marshall

Going to the nursing home we are reminded of the brevity of life here on this earth. I refuse to buy sympathy cards though, I just won't do it. I buy them as I need them but never ahead of time. That just does not set well with me, I don't know why, I guess because I've been surprised by death and disappointments before and I don't believe in planning for them in such a way. That's just me. One of the worst things that ever happened to me in my life was when my step-daddy suddenly died of a heart attack. I felt so alone...just so alone. My friends really didn't understand because none of them had lost anyone. Little Marianna and Lea were in tears, they had lost their best friend. Michelle was wee baby, Al had carried her on his shoulder. After he died my little Michelle would run up to silver haired men in the grocery store reaching her little arms to them. My pediatrician was even moved to tears when he heard of this. Rebecca was yet to be born...So sad Rebecca never knew her Pa Pa Al.

Oh me oh about a bunny trail.


One of my favorite little guys at the nursing home is Calvin, he is a darling black man, not very old at all, he may only be in his 30s for all I know. He has some bulk to him, a round baby face and a darling smile. He can't hear hardly at all and cannot speak very well if at all. He is so darling, he smiles so darling and laughs so darling...He reminds me of an innocent child. He puts his cheek up to me to kiss, I always kiss his cheek. He is a darling! So glad to see the nurses taking good care of him today. He's in a wheelchair and needs their help to go to the bathroom and sometimes I worry they don't get to him in time, I hate suffering. I let him leave a message on my cell as he laughs and tries to talk for Hubs, Calvin wants to communicate effectively so badly. I want Hubs to meet him...I know Hubs would be touched by this sweetheart. Marianna got a wonderful shot of Calvin today, I hope to post it soon!

When Hubs came home he had heard the messages and was clearly touched by them, especially Calvin's labor of speech.

Alton and Howard

Another older man who fought in the Korean war leaves a message too, He says to Hubs on the message..."Hello Sir". Another? His name is Howard, never married, no children, he was an archeologist years ago. He has a cute German face. Michelle, our daughter brought him a Bible one day, we remind him to read it. He wears a large cross around his neck now.

After the nursing home, we get a quick bite at Taco Bell. Yes, these are the things life is made of...I found a great little trio. The burrito fresco with sides of guacamole and rice. I can eat without guilt and with mercy (you can see my Vision for a Godly home blog to see the video on factory farming). After this we go to the nearby name brands for less store, something tells me that is a good thing to do. So we girls sachet on over there, I found two pair of flats. One black patent pair with an enormous rose on each shoe. The toe is nice and round. (No pinching of the toes! Yay!) Another versatile peep toe flat in a mild metallic beige. I can wear nothing but Birkenstocks, Earth or totally flat ballet type shoes. So glad to have found those two pair today for reasonable prices.

On the way home we see this cotton pretty.


Last but not least, this is Marilla our kitten. She is peering over my computer. I think she wants to tell everyone hello!

Well I must go now...Lea cooked some wonderful enchiladas tonight and they are ready to eat.

Goodnight. Be blessed, live the Life. Every day is a journal page what will we compose?

Monday, August 15, 2011

This Morning. This Evening. For Real.

This morning the moon was still out, now how's that? Drinking coffee in my pjs and the moon is out...I thought it was so very neat. Good morning Jesus.

Hubs wants to know if I want to go for a walk after supper, oh yes, oh yes I say.

I grab my camera, this was what we saw on the way out to the back of the property, I love the way the setting sun reflects upon the trees. Just like we should reflect Christ.

Spooky dude snake on the way back...He didn't scare me...I think he was a rat snake. I think.

Watch out Guisseppe, you just passed a snake dear one. This is another of our fur angels, he too was found. He has cataracts and I treat them with a homeopathic drop for such a thing. He is a darling, he's a chunk too...Talk about a good natured little dog...He's just so glad to be here. We love him.

On the way back...I'm telling Hubs about the books I'm reading. I was hoping to get a nice sum for a huge lot of very nice books our oldest girls brought to half price books this eve. HP books are inundated these days and gave us very little for a nice set of books. Poo. Hubs was telling me I could have used the sum for perhaps a nice signed old Grace Livingston Hill book and others. Oh well, so much for that...At least for now. Oh the ups and downs of real estate. That's okay, that's the way the ball bounces, it will bounce back up, the Lord is faithful. I'm the queen of making do or doing without...I can be rather creative let me tell you! : ) It's all about contentment. I love it here.
Oh my we're back at the house and Hubs and I cannot believe the beauty we are seeing tonight.

Above my head...

This looked like something from the movie, 'Gone With the Wind'...I was flabbergasted at the beauty...

In the cozy house to feed the four doglets and kitlet...I thought this spoke of our lives these days. The mannequin from our daughters modesty boutique now closed because of the economy, it now sports a dress ready to be tweaked by our daughter to add some material here and there...Boxes being gone through...The stairway Hubs is artfully working on...I love the old fashioned look of it with the wood and all.

Let me go outside again...Oh my, it has become even more lovely! It reminds me of Heaven...

Oh it's getting dark now...

The basil plant looked neat I thought under the twilight skies...Let me stoop down on the porchhhhhhhhh...

...Oops. I fell on my rump I did. I made the most of it...I sat and admired the sky some more...It was nice. I felt like a little girl sitting there just nothing better to do than observe God's Creation...

Goodnight All...

Our kitten, Marilla and our sweet dog, Charlie Horsie. Isn't Charlie such a love? He's sharing his food with the kitten...Hubs and I rescued Marilla several weeks ago under a freeway overpass...You should have seen me in a skirt under the streetlights capturing the kitty...

Nightie Night, have a sweet sleep All...

The Heaven's Declare His Glory! May we abide in Him, what a friend we have In Jesus.

The end.

P.S. ....Don't you just love the bongo drums on the old Dick Van Dyke show theme ? Can you guess what we are watching?

Monday, August 8, 2011

See the Art in Me

Have you ever tried to make a 20 minute skirt and it turned out to be a 120 minute skirt?

Here's mine, I won't do this particular skirt method anymore...I might as well have stuck with my trusty Simplicity 4881 in the below the knee length look for coolness. This thing was so billowy it made me look like a Russian cleaning woman. No offense to the Russians or cleaning women but I imagine this big burly woman with a giant mop and bucket ga-lumping down a dark hallway... ; ) I should have known when Marianna tried one of these *eh hem* 20 minute skirts and had the same problem. I had to keep cutting down and cutting down to keep it from looking like a mile of swarthing material around my hips!

I do like this fabric for a cool summer skirt. I found it at Hobby Lobby. I didn't want to spend an arm and a leg and I wanted this cool skirt to be versatile and go with a lot of tops for traipsing about our land taking walks by the pond etc. Right about the time I was getting frustrated in the fabric department I spotted this simple chambray cotton poly mix for $2.99. A lightweight blouse type material. Perfect for my skirt. I sewed it right on a 1 inch wide elastic stretching the elastic unlike (20 min.) directions gave. I did it their way first and had to rip it out (boooooo). Oh dear me, I don't think I give myself enough credit to my own judgements on sewing sometimes...

The above is taken last week, a bit after noon...the shadow tickles me.

What do I sew on? I sew on a simple Brothers from Walmart, I bought the bottom of the line in the store and it is a dandy little machine, it has everything I need for around $60.00 with a few little extra stitches. I also bought the pink and purple Brothers from Walmart later online with straight and zig-zag stich for $50.00 delivered. With four sewin' girls we needed two machines. No need to spend big money on a machine, but I do recommend buying good thread, oh boy-howdy does that make a difference on a machine. Cheapie thread is fine for hand sewing but not on a machine.
My next sewing project? The simple #4881 in the longest length. You can also go to my thats_italian for an easy top to make.

This is what I'm wearing today, the longer #4881 with my black patent Birkenstocks. Birks help my back immensely.

Hope everyone has a nice evening, Charlie says Hey!

So that's the art in me today. I wasn't able to sew but I was able to cook a new veggie dish and blog here this evening...Live, laugh, love, create and pray hard. Very hard.

God is Just. He is good.

Love to All in Jesus, ~Amelia

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Rainy Morning, Rainbow Included. Bonus: How to Climb a Fence in a Skirt

Hi-do-ho! It's been interesting here at the Forest Cathedral lately...We're just loving it here. It's different at times but different doesn't mean bad, just different. It's always something going on, from Mr. Greeky's cows in our yard helping themselves to our pond and garden again. : P (One of these days we'll get the fence fixed properly) All the way to some delightful trips to Smalltown and Hubs praying with the driveway material man. We had quite a storm the other morning...Wonderfully enchanting I say. And a special added bonus: How to Climb a Fence in a Skirt. Here's some pics for you to perhaps enjoy of it all... A Capture of Prayers Between Christian Brothers in the Lord I love this shot Joycie captured. Hubs and this precious man praying together in our driveway. The man is a precious Christian man, the sweetest thing. He had delivered driveway materials that afternoon from his gravel company, thunderstorms were expected so this was an answer to prayer for us. His daughter was so very tragically thrown into a coma in the process of delivering her baby. Please pray for this young mother and baby. This grandpa had the best attitude and clearly loves the Lord, so humbling to see such a beautiful attitude. He tearfully shares with Hubs he would give his home, everything he owned if he could see his daughter out of that coma. The Cows are Back The cows are back in town and this time taking a morning swim in our pond! Oh my! These black ones are ornery little friends, and quite vocal too! ; ) Storms Arrive Remember the thunderstorm expected? It is arriving here...The view from my front door. And this is our little Muffie looking out the window to all the action outside, between the cows and the rain there was a lot to look at for this little guy. See the spray bottle? It is filled with water and a few drops of cedar oil to keep the little buglets off of our doglets. This is our Charlie-dog. He's also a cow dog. Yep, Charlie can dance a jig around those cows! I love these shots, this is of a very contemplative Joycie that morning, right after the rainstorm, rainbow was out in full force, you can see our lives there. My sewing project out, Charlie dog on the Duncan Fife chair peering out looking for action, Complete with Norman Rockwell plates on wall.  Joycie is sitting where I normally sit to pray in the mornings... I loved this shot of Joycie's pretty little feet with the pink robe...Charlie keeping vigil over her... My oldest daughter Janie once courted a sweet math professor, an actual doctor of Math. Bless his heart, he would try to tell me: "Mrs. Italiana, I think a woman's feet are so pretty, I just don't understand why they want to wear those high heels." He would then put his hand upwards fingertips down to illustrate the point making his hand hop around on the table like a geisha girl foot. What happened to the math prof? He later got married to another homeschool gal since Janie didn't have peace about things. Courtship works even when a courtship doesn't work out. God knows what He is doing. : ) Ya know? I think he was very correct. Since my back injury I have a love for ballet flats and birkenstocks. I actually wear black patent or silver birkenstock madrid sandals on datenight...It works. Not too shabby either. I will start buying my birks without leather footbeds now that I am a bit more educated on how leather comes in many cases. It is a humanitarian conviction, one of mercy for me and a strong one. I think Charlie is such a handsome dog, I love his silver hair. He was rescued by Grace several years ago from the pound with her birthday money, when she saw him she cried and said she loved him clinging to her tattered birthday money envelope in her still little-girl hands. Charlie is said to be part poodle and part terrier. He is so very dramatic...Sometimes his eyes are so soulful they will frighten you they are just so human-like. Sometimes we call him "Carlos" like the humorously dramatic character in the old late 30s movie, "My Man Godfrey". Charlie is a trip, and yes he smiles too. He is a very happy go lucky, spunky little doglet when he is not protecting us and contemplating deep doggy thoughts. Little Muffie trying to see if the coast is clear, and the storm passed. He is so very afraid of rain, when Joycie found him in the intersection his collar was rusted shut and he was so very matted. He is my hubby's right hand man. He thinks he is ten feet tall! He is a darling. What storm is complete without a rainbow? Rainbows are very special to our family. Vivid signs from the Lord. After the rain and the rainbow the rain glistened everywhere...From the back... The front....You can also see what the drought has done to some of our trees... A little reminder from my back door near my kitchen...It sparkled in the glistening raindrops... What Kind of Shoes are Those? My new Earth shoes. They are pink and rubber soled. This skirt is something I made myself, the print is called laughing leaf. My girls looked at these shoes with the extreme negative heel and the big pink straps....As if I was from another planet. "Where did you get those?" I reply, "I took them from a hobbit." ; ) Ha! No, I got them from ebay. I needed the negative heel, I needed rubber in the great outdoors and this fit the bill and the price was right. They work! How to Climb a Fence in a Skirt. Okay, this is a series of events I caught on my handy dandy red camera.  Joycie going out for the mail, not just any mail mind you but mail worth crawling over a fence in a skirt over! Out in the country, you just never know what might be out there and plus...It's not every day you can try climbing a fence with a skirt on. It is a denim skirt like a real cowgirl? This is so very Joycie... : ) Uh Huh. I see you Miss Joycie...Mama Mia sees you....I just happen to have my camera handy too. Yes Indeedie. ; ) Careful Missy... Very graceful Joycie! Easy does it... Calm, cool and collective...A cow girl in skirt with trusty dog returning from the mailbox. Who would have known? All in a normal day of a lovely cow girl...Joycie. She has some fun and meaningful blogs right now on Smalltown and life in general with the Father above. All in 24 hours at the Forest Cathedral... Today for supper I'm cooking up a wonderful red bean soup, with onions, fresh garlic and bell peppers sauteed in olive oil to artfully simmer all together in vegetable broth. Will be served over rice coupled with corn muffins. I'm wearing a white collared cotton knit top and a long light green summery tiered gauze skirt with white rubber flip flops, hair back in a clip. I am reading: My Bible and The Girl from Montana by Grace Livingston Hill. That was the book of the month for July in the GLH club. Listening to Nat King Cole, Love is The Thing and More cd. I'm thinking I'm tired and my back is paining me a little, so I need to go put my feet up for a bit. Blessings to All, Have a nice evening! ~Amelia