Monday, December 21, 2015

Weekend Lessons, Little Gift Ideas, an Old Movie Discovery, Recipe, Music, Today!

I learned some illustrated lessons this weekend, so yesterday, a most balmy Sunday, I thought I would write about them and share today.  I also have some token gift offerings that might put an ease in your Christmas, and a new old movie discovery I think you may enjoy!

Lesson 1.  Jem, Joycie and I were on our way to the city church in downtown and I realized in my hurry I had completely forgotten my already carefully packed socks, peanut butter-crackers, kleenex, toothbrushes etc. for the homeless we see on the streets.  Why?  Because I was not watching my time and rushed at the end of leaving time!  I told Jem, ...That is why being un-organized or in a big hurry is so bad!  Now I don't have my stuff for the homeless.  The last-minute thing just doesn't cut it.  How many times have we not done we should do for the Lord because of a lack of planning in simply getting ready?  Perhaps we take our time for granted thinking we have plenty of time and then, fly out the door half done. Aargh. 

Lesson 2.  We walked up the beautiful old hundred year old steps inside the old historical church to the balcony to see the violinists, the percussionists and choir sing and make Christmas music so lovely, so beautiful you become teary eyed.  In front of us though was the video guy who videos the service weekly for television.  He was blocking part of my view. Hm. Disconcerting I thought.  But ya know?  Before I knew it I looked straight ahead and there was that huge beautiful stained glass window, and oh it is a huge one!  One of the most huge if not the hugest I know of. The curve of the balcony made a way for me to face the Jesus window. There was Jesus standing in front of me head-on holding His hands out to me!   To the left  of the same window was Jesus again holding so sweetly, meekly his little lamb with two other of his little lambs at his feet in that huge stained glass window.  I could hardly keep my eyes off of Jesus with His little lambs.  It was right where Christ wanted me yesterday.  Facing Him.  If I would have spent time fretting over the videographer being in my way, I never would have *seen* Jesus right in front of me, my precious, sweet, loving Jesus who ministers to my soul!

Lesson 3.  Jem and I were very tickled the other day, we were on a daytrip and saw a couple with the cutest little white dog.  The very young lady and her "dad" were taking very good care of this little dog.  As we walked on, Jem noticed they were holding hands like husband and wife...It was the famous entertainer, Tony Bennett!  Right under our very noses.  (He was in that town for a concert).

I wonder who else we do not notice?!

This brings me again to Christ.  Are we missing Christ at times right under our very noses? : )


And by the way on that city church, Pastor Wende, we will miss you greatly.  I wish you weren't retiring.  But if you see this, we will miss you.  Praying that there will be another godly pastor leading the flock this summer.

Pastor Wende just married Zuzu and Tommy, it it so evident he knows the Lord in such a personal way.  I try and look forward to watch and hear his sermons every week on television.   He's a very kind man from what we know and that is a blessing.  Very rare unfortunately. 

I remember when I was a little girl in the modern catholic church I attended.  There was a father Connally.  He loved our family, he was a friend of my cousin who was once a priest and father Conally seemed to have a special concern for my mother and I.  He would braid my long waist length hair outside on the sidewalk as I waited on my mother to pick me up after Wednesday evening catechism. Think Bing Crosby in The Bells of St. Mary's.  As a little girl, I could literally feel the Holy Spirit when around this man.  My mom and I would attend church frequently but infrequently, so inadvertantly we returned after a month one summer to find father Connally gone.  My little girl stomach was sick and that church was never the same.

So now, I have the same strange inkling.   So I pray.  I pray that the downtown church will not go the way of the world.  People don't seem to understand that families like ours do not want the cheap or  modernized.   We don't need "younger" ministers, just a minister with a timeless heart who knows Christ personally.  A simple sweet gospel with care.  We want the tried and true, the old fashioned which should be the all-the-time fashion in Christ.  

Some of these thoughts bring me to think about this blog at times and what it is for, I do pray it will be a gentle challenge of thoughts perhaps others are not willing to challenge on, but also a very honest account of life. I also like the everyday normalcy of life.  It's a Gift!  So have a cuppa with me won't you?  

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Hey Gals!  Here are some Cute Gift Ideas You can Find at Your Local Grocery for Last Minute Gifts, Perhaps to Have On Hand: 

I think I will post some gift ideas since this is Christmas week and some are looking for easy-breezy ideas at their local grocery etc, here are some cute little token gift ideas that make life easy but thoughtful.

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Most of these can be found at the grocery store so you won't have to fight crowds and go crazy.   Walmart has these to order as well although I know it's a little late now to order.

Sleepytime Vanilla Herbal Tea - Click for More Information  One idea that I have is a box of tea.  I wrap a  Celestial Seasonings box or even a box of Rose brand tea, whatever suits your fancy, either wrapping alone, or placing a very pretty, carefully chosen dishtowel found at the $ stores around it and then wrapping.

Another gift suggestion from a blog is a boxed bar of pink Dove soap wrapped.  I think this is so cute and different with a pretty towel or washcloth wrapped around it as well.  I have some single soap boxes on hand wrapped in red and white candy-stripe wrapping paper, and the fragrance is so pretty.   I've tucked a wrapped bar in the box with my mother's blouse for Christmas, the entire box has a lovely fragrance now.   These also make cute wrapped gifts to leave for the homeless.

For a neighbor who always brings us homemade goodies, I put a wrapped soap bar, two dish towels, a hot pad and a small can of dipping cookies in a cute gift bag ready to go.

Eight O'Clock coffee makes a great gift as well either on it's own or paired with some store-bought cookies such as archway or european ones in the cookie section. Last year our girls did manage to make homemade candy cane cookies so that was nice.  This brand of coffee is already in a Christmas color and it's good coffee too!  The price is very reasonable for good and good-looking coffee. : )

 Perhaps this will help you with token or surprise gifts to have on hand.  We just don't make cookies like we used to, we don't eat much sugar in our home or wheat for the mostpart so tea, coffee and towels with a fragranced soap bar fits the bill for having on hand.

Come to the Stable (1949)  Anyone seen this movie?   We hadn't and are so very delighted with it!

Come to the Stable is a 1949 American film which tells the story of two French nuns who come to a small New England town and involve the townsfolk in helping them to build a children's hospital.

Nominated for 7 Oscars and other awards as well including the Writers Guild.

My husband and I were rolling, laughing while watching this one, and there are plenty of poignant parts as well.  Elements of Christmas are included.

One very poignant part is that of one of the nuns playing a rather strong tennis match in her habit to the shock of everyone.  When asked where she learned to play tennis she replies...She was the winner of a famous 1939 match.  The several around her gasp, and proclaim she is the famous player by name.  She walks away smiling and says No Mademoiselle... No longer.  She was obviously speaking of her new life in her way of walking with Christ. It's a very neat scene as well as other scenes in the movie. 

Where do we discover this movie greatness you may ask?  We subscribe to Turner Classic Movies on cable television.  Turner Classics plays no commercials so it is very nice indeed.  I love the 40s as many of you may know so this definitely sets a most wonderful theme in our home many a day or evening as we desire.   You cannot beat the later 30s or 40s movies.  These movies as I have written before are made in a time in our country when there was a healthy fear of God.   ...WWII.  I know so well from speaking to people in the nursing home and some of my older friends, the nation was a very different place then.

We may not be able to control the nation but we can make our homes that peaceful place.  I was sharing with Jem that if every mom would tend to her home and make the most of it, making home a cheerful place with a nightly family supper, the country would be so much better!  Talk about true liberation! : )  I see it as an art and my first ministry.  It's for an Audience of One and that's all that counts.

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What's for supper?
Vegan Zuppa Toscana Soup!   We love this stuff... Soooo good.  I am using frozen spinach instead of kale in mine this evening.  It's what I have on hand.  It works.

What are we listening to today?  

White Christmas, Bing Crosby.  Darling old fashioned music!   White Christmas

 Well Loves, I better run, Have a sweet day,  Signing off for the day from The Forest Cathedral.  ~Amelia

I Am Jesus' Little Lamb, Pack of 100 Bulletins  - 

Thursday, December 17, 2015

A Must-See. Do we SEE? What do we Clamor After?

Do we see the beauty in others?  Do we feel overlooked at times?  This must be how Christ feels.  He is our precious Gift but yet many times ignored, especially this Christmas season.  I think this incredible video, below, my daughter, Marianna, sent of the famous violinist, Lindsey Stirling (incognito!) playing while being ignored in the subway as the manger scene is at her feet speaks so hugely.  The people around her indiscriminately are on phones, running to and fro in busyness, ignoring the beautiful gift...and The Gift...They walk on by. 

Let's see the Jesus in others, let's be Jesus to others.

It's amazing to me how so many, even church-goers (notice I do not call all church-goers, Christian.)  The fruits of so many who even attend various churches are the love of the world in so many cases.  We see and hear; envy, jealousy, name-dropping, comparisons, gossip, just wanting to fit in and bowing before being-part.  The pure and lovely are often overlooked when so many are looking for glitz, name recognition etc.  People sadly clamor for that plastic, position and glimmer so many times!  

Our daughter, Zuzu's wedding last fall was a very good example of a sweet wedding that glorified Christ, the wedding was held in a beautiful old church with stained glass windows of Christ with His lambs, a violinist played, organ music abounded. Even Zuzu's and Tommy's coworkers became tearie-eyed as Zuzu came down the aisle. The reception was lovely in the pretty, dimly lit lovely church hall, a male pianist playing instrumental music and lovely finger foods, tea, coffee with a vintage look wedding cake was presented, along with natural fresh flowers and berry decorations atop old Grace Livingston Hill books adorning tables with dark plum table cloths and tea lights. The aura was lovely and sweet.  Many who notice and appreciate the pure and lovely loved the godliness and purity of Zuzu and Tommy's wedding and have told us so, for they were encouraged.  But sadly, some of our even closest relatives and acquaintances chose to not only overlook this wedding, one older generation person has indiscriminately and heartlessly, purposely, bragged to my husband and Zuzu on others' weddings serving the world up with loud bands, huge food courses, and all that goes with that.  Someone who should have been so very proud, but who simply loves the world and sadly calls the things of the world, "beautiful" but also loves going to the modern churches, the person often dismissing sweet things.  The Bible talks about that sort of thing doesn't it.  Most of these are church-goers who will talk the talk of churchdom. Please know I'm not wanting to come across as woe-is-me, you see, true family was there as well as the precious friends who are like true family!  They were there!  They were beautiful Gifts!  The contrast in the two attitudes was remarkable in who disregarded the wedding and those who so sweetly attended and were blessed by it!  You could see so clearly who was attracted to what, no matter what talk they talk or what church they attend if any.

"A dead thing can go with the stream, but only a living thing can go against it."   -C.K. Chesterton

What are we attracted to?  What and who do we disregard?  What and who do we embrace and tout?  Are we embarrassed by purity?  If we are, then something is very wrong. 

If we love the things of the world, the love of the Father is not in us. 

I think this young lady, this violinist in the video is beautiful in more ways then one.  Very, very neat indeed.

You will see she and the little manger scene at her feet being passed by as she being incognito is being ignored as well as the precious manger scene, people passing by  not *seeing* the Beauty. It's so wrong on so many accounts.  May I see the Beauty in the ordinary.  May I see Christ clearly as I go through life!

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Please don't forget to see the video on the next oldest post.  God's Creatures are also overlooked many times. Check out Factory farming and the dairy industry and you will see...I hope.  It's not a liberal or conservative issue, but it is sadly and cruelly ignored by many.

Juris Naturalist

Good Afternoon Loves,  amelia in the Forest

"Let your religion be less of a theory and more of a love affair."   -C.K. Chesterton

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Monday, December 14, 2015

Think About It...I Dare You

Animals are sentient and do know they are going to die. You can see how this one cow just don't want to go in there because he knows death awaits him. How heartbreaking.

Please take just a few minutes to see this video.  There is no blood or slaughter shown.  ...But just see, hear and feel with your heart.

I am an ethical vegetarian-vegan and it breaks my heart what happens to His creatures and how many church-goers ignore this.

"You can bet your bag of beans Francis of Assisi would have been a vegetarian."
John Michael Talbot   (Christian singer and worship leader)

"Have you noticed most slaughterhouses don't have windows?"
Paul McCartney

How do we regard animals lives?

I hope to post some ethically vegetarian/vegan dishes in the future for you to try.  I cannot tell you how wonderful and FREEING it is to eat guilt-free and the perks in health are amazing.   God truly blesses. 

Genesis 1:29  And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.

Proverbs 12:10 A righteous man regardeth the life of his beast: but the tender mercies of the wicked are cruel. 

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Tuesday, December 8, 2015

'Room for One More' (1952) ...A Most Poignant and PRECIOUS Movie with an Element of Christmas! My Homemade Dusting Powder Gift Idea You Can Easily Make!

Room For One More (1952) with Betsy Drake and Cary Grant.  Beautiful movie, poignant and touching with humor galore!  Adorable movie that brings us back to a time, perhaps a time before we were even born, but a time our hearts and souls long for once again.  We don't have to join in with culture do we.  Let's be brave and have courage to be different, to be sweet, to be able to laugh and not be stilted.

See the dog at the table with Betsy Drake looking on smiling? 

...A well made movie with a plot showing a whole family, where values were instilled in children and parents were in the home. Yes, please show it again, soon!  -Reviewer from TCM

Our family so enjoyed this most precious, precious movie.  Our entire family thoroughly enjoyed it, not once but several times including my husband!  The movie is a wonderful wholesome movie about a sweet family with a beautiful heart for foster children not to mention pets!  I so saw myself, in ways, of the part of the mother, played by Betsy Drake caring for not only little children but fur angels as well.. And what makes the movie enchanting is the fact that Cary Grant and Betsy Drake were married in real life.

I highly suggest this most wonderful movie for your family too!  We had never heard of this movie and are delighted with it.  It brings us back to a better time indeed.  The part of one of the foster children, a little boy with braces on his legs, the part was beautifully done, his painful emotions in one particular part as he wept and cried out in private pain had my husband and I closing our eyes in such our pain for the character of this little boy. 

One element of Christmas was so darling and exhibited such a simplicity that the world is waiting for and so hungry far I do believe.  You will see a simple Christmas around the tree.  Betsy Drake had cut her formal dress down for their little foster girl so the little girl could have a formal for a special event...and you will see what happens if you choose to see the movie.  (a clue is the generosity of her siblings when they see a slight problem with the dress).

A most lovely movie.

I hope you too will enjoy?

Well, Loves, just wanted to drop a tip for a new classic movie we have discovered.  

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We are trying to keep Christmas sensible but most delightful and sweet focusing even more on others, poor in spirit and otherwise. How about you?  The car and jewelry store commercials make me want to upchuck I must say.  

Our Sweet Jesus was born on hay but the worship of culture pushes materialism.  No thanks pals. Ye ain't foolin' me chumps!   *big smile*

It's like the Emporor's new clothes isn't it?  I drive our paid-off reliable truck to smalltown and laugh the whole way!  Jingle Bells!  Jingle Bells!  Out of debt, Out of debt!  *huge smile*  There are those who strive for the "look" of accomplishment making their very lives a mess when they could be rich in spirit if they were wise and whole, not so sadly insecure.  It boggles the mind does it not?

The Father's yoke is easy and His burden is light.  Light.  Let's us take His simplicity and rest right?  Nothing wrong with a sweet well thought out gift(s) of course but things are soooo out of whack as I'm sure you would agree.

Joycie and I have had a wonderful time at Dollar General loading up on very pretty old fashioned baby dolls and stuffed animals to deliver to a church for their outreach to underprivileged children and parents.   If you have not been to a Dollar General dime store I highly recommend!  They are the only modern stores I know of except for Family Dollar that is close to the old fashioned five and dimes.  Yes, you will still find the old fashioned baby dolls there for reasonable prices.  Joycie found some baby dolls that sing 'Jesus Loves Me'.  How sweet is that for a little girl?

One particular gift I have made for our grown girls at home, something fun and well received is a dusting powder.  I use cornstarch, a couple of drops of lavender and patchoulli oils mixed.  I mixed them in an old fashioned plastic bag and then placed that carefully, closed with a wire twisty inside of a Dollar Tree mini metal lunch-kit type of container. The bag with the oils needs to sit, sealed for at least several days to obtain a good scent.  It's really cute little gift!  I ordered a three-pack of real powder puffs from Walter Drake, (the pretty kind with a satin ribbon) and placed it on top of each bag of fragranced frivolity before buckling down the metal lid of the 'case'.  Soooo cute!  

loading ...  Our tree is decorated much like this with old fashioned icicles.  It's a definite 40s tree!  It never grows out of style! 

We all need a portal through which we can find a quieter life, at least occasionally.  For too many of us, Christmas is a nightmarish revolving door in which we're spinning faster and faster.  But the wiser among us find it a sort of time-warp portal, rotating us from the hustle and bustle of twenty-first-century life to the sedate world of a quieter time.

So this year, slow down, look up, breathe deeply, spend less -- and simplify, simpllify!  The way of a calmed Christmas--simplicity.  

-David Jeremiah from the little book, The 12 Ways of Christmas

Hopefully I'll have more me-made gifts to share next time.

Have a sweet afternoon Loves,  Blessings to All,  Let's enter into the stable shall we?   Signing off from the Forest Cathedral.  -Amelia