Saturday, May 31, 2008

Race day

The Sunburst took place today downtown. For years now we've watched as the streets around our home get cordoned off for the athletes. This year we registered to run a 5k, but because of two pinched nerves in my back, I just wasn't able to properly train, we downsized to a 5k walk. Now before you think that I wimped out, I was really stepping out aggressively.  We finished our 5k in 49 minutes, but because we walked to the Hall of Fame where the races began, and from the stadium where the races finished, it was almost a 10k.
The weather couldn't have been nicer. It was a wonderful day. I am very satisfied. And I have a new pillow which should help me sleep better. Yeah!

Have a beautiful weekend.

Friday, May 30, 2008

Purple Columbine


Columbine is an early Summer flowering plant. One of the easiest parennials to grow with delightful, interesting flower shape. Columbine have 5 spurs that contain nectar. There are many plants that have nectar in the spur. However, while familiar plants like impatiens, violets, and larkspurs are limited to just one spur per flower, columbines are set apart by having five of them.

Consider the lilies how they grow: they toil not, they spin not; and yet I say unto you, that Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.  Luke 12:27

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Simple joys

The first time on a swing outside, ah the breeze against your cheek and through your hair

a mountainous task accomplished


a cool treat on a hot day . . .


leaving fun colors on your face and tongue!

Something special about today

What we are is God's gift to us. What we become is our gift to God. ~ Eleanor Powell 

We are so glad for the gift of you! Happy Birthday to the mother of the one I love. Hope your day was beautiful.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

To the cemetary


It is our family's tradition, every Memorial day, to plant flowers at my Granma's and Grandpa's grave. We gather up the leaves and debris, break up the ground, pull up old dead plants and plant the new ones, watering liberally to give them a good start.



My baby -that was not to be- rests here too.

Monday, May 26, 2008

We Remember


Thank you Dad, Grandpa and Grandma for your brave service to our country in time of war. Thank you for coming back home. 
Thank you to those who served and did not come home.  You have "transformed the world in unimaginable ways."





They are dead; but they live in each Patriot's breast,
And their names are engraven on honor's bright crest.
~Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


"Here Rests 
In Honored Glory 
An American Soldier 
Known But To God"

The Sentinels Creed

My dedication to this sacred duty is total and wholehearted. 
In the responsibility bestowed on me never will I falter. 
And with dignity and perseverance my standard will remain perfection. 
Through the years of diligence and praise and the discomfort of the elements, 
I will walk my tour in humble reverence to the best of my ability. 
It is he who commands the respect I protect. 
His bravery that made us so proud. 
Surrounded by well meaning crowds by day alone in the thoughtful peace of night, 
this soldier will in honored glory rest under my eternal vigilance.





When he shall die,
 
Take him and cut him out in little stars, 
And he will make the face of heaven so fine 
That all the world will be in love with night, 
And pay no worship to the garish sun. 
-- Scene 2, Romeo and Juliet
William Shakespeare



Even in our sleep, pain which cannot forget 
falls drop by drop upon the heart, 
until, in our own despair, against our will, 
comes wisdom through the awful grace of God.
Aeschylus.




I have fought a good fight 
I have finished my course 
I have kept the faith. 
-- Timothy 2:4:7


I pray that our Heavenly Father 
may assuage the anguish of your bereavement, 
and leave you only the cherished memory of the 
loved and lost, and the solemn pride that must be yours, 
to have laid so costly a sacrifice upon the altar of Freedom.
-- Abraham Lincoln, November 1864




"War drew us from our homeland 
In the sunlit springtime of our youth. 
Those who did not come back alive remain 
 in perpetual springtime -- forever young -- 
And a part of them is with us always."
-- Author Unknown




"Great harm has been done to us. 
We have suffered great loss. 
And in our grief and anger we have found 
our mission and our moment."
-- President George W. Bush, September 2001





They shall grow not old 
 As we that are left grow old, 
Age shall not weary them . .  
Nor the years condemn. 
At the going down of the sun, 
And in the morning, 
We will remember them!
-- Lawrence Binyon


Saturday, May 24, 2008

Saturday

The day of the week that comes between Friday and Sunday.
It was named after the planet Saturn which was thought to have control over the first hour of the day. The planet was named for the Roman god of agriculture.
Saturday is the only day of the week in which the English name comes from Roman mythology.
India, Thailand and the Celtic languages also name the day for Saturn. In Thailand, the color associated with Saturday is purple.
 
In the Jewish tradition, Saturday is named Shabbat. Christianity adopted this in terms of the Sabbath. Thus in many countries, Saturday is named after the Sabbath. 
Eastern Orthodox churches distinguish between Sabbath (Saturday) and the Lord's Day (Sunday).
Roman Catholics put so little emphasis on that distinction that many among them follow – at least in colloquial language – the Protestant practice of calling Sunday the sabbath.
Quakers traditionally refer to Saturday as "Seventh Day" eschewing the "pagan" origin of the name.
In Scandinavian countries the name Lordag is derived from the old word laugr meaning bath. It equates to bath-day due to the Viking usage of bathing on Saturdays.

Saturday is the preferred election day in Louisiana.

Saturday's child works hard for a living.


Friday, May 23, 2008

A sunny afternoon

I spent the afternoon with a garden sprite and a shiny brave knight. They had all kinds of adventures in the back yard and then finished things up by creating a chalk mosaic on the patio.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Maria Chapman


This is not at all
How we thought it was supposed to be
We had so many plans for you
We had so many dreams
But now you've gone away
And left us with the memories of your smile
And nothing we can say
And nothing we can do
Can take away the pain
The pain of losing you

And we can cry with hope
We can say good-bye with hope
'Cause we know our good-bye is not the end
And we can grieve with hope
'Cause we believe with hope
There's a place where we'll see your face again
We'll see your face again

And never have I known
Anything so hard to understand
And never have I questioned more
The wisdom of God's plan
But through the cloud of tears
I see the Father smile and say 'well done.'
And I imagine you
Where you wanted most to be
Seeing all your dreams come true
'Cause now your home
And now your free

We have this hope as an anchor
'Cause we believe that everything
God promised us is true
We wait with hope
And we ache with hope
We hold on with hope
We let go with hope
~ Steven Curtis Chapman

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Music in the morning

Is there a better way to start the day?
I know not what.

Annabelle is just tall enough to plink the keys and seems to favor the lower notes. Maybe it makes her feel bigger, she is so proud of the sounds she makes. What you cannot see in this picture, Bronwen has set two little girls up on the top to listen to her songs.

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Yellow




It's a color challenge!
To accept the challenge, simply post some of your own yellow treasures.

Here are the bits of yellow from my home. I don't use much yellow in decorating, so this was really a good challenge for me.  The easiest places to find this cheery color were in the kids rooms.



In my kitchen: a butter yellow tea pot, a gold napkin I made for a birthday party several years ago. An over ripe pear - now it's just a treat for one of the dogs.  The ceramic pot with happy little bugs was given with a plant when Bronwen was born. The gold mug and blue and yellow linen came from my trip to sweden.


In the music room: Fresh golden walls, an empty yellow picture frame (for which I have big plans,) and a yellow candle - pineapple grapefruit - absolutely delicious. A vintage light fixture hangs gracefully. 

In the bath, creamy pale yellow towel and sponge and a happy little soap duck.


In the girls' room: Special blankets. The bottom two handmade from Grandma Becky; the third lovingly made by a cousin for my Granma Harriet's sick room many many years ago. And the blanket on top is the one my sister made for Bronwen.  The ceramic duck is Bronwen's vintage-like bank given by my brother's family when she was born.


Even the trim in their room is a very pale yellow.


A doll made by Great Gram. She would be so happy!



In Noah's room, some of his favorite toys are yellow. His absolute favorite, Tonka truck, a transformer named Bumblebee, his star bank, a duck from his first birthday party and a few odds and ends.

Happy hunting and post a comment to let me know if you are up to the challenge!

Monday, May 19, 2008

We have teeth!

It's been a couple of difficult months for this little mouth, but she finally has something to show for all of that pain. Beginning two weeks after her birthday, the little white tip finally pushed through on the bottom and nearly a week after that, the other one. Last week the top one came through and very soon its neighbor will arrive. So for now, she has three pearly whites. This picture was difficult to catch as Annabelle is very protective of her tender mouth. But the more she gets used to their presence, the more she is letting them show. She has such a sweet smile. 
I love it.

To use or not to use

that is the question. Sunscreen that is. 
Yes the sun damages skin causing aging, but my question has been does the sun really cause the cancer, or do the chemicals from the sunscreen and other cosmetics and lotions cause cancer? I have my theories. What are yours? And while you are thinking about it, here is a nice place to read for more information. 
Why do you suppose that with so many more products available, and so much more attention paid to this topic, skin cancer is still on the rise? 
Just thinking.

So, have fun in the sun and be careful!

Saturday, May 17, 2008

My Noah



This morning when I came down, I found that my Noah had both girls up and fed and that he was showered and dressed. Where are you going I wondered. Nowhere. He has just decided to take a shower every morning now. 

Do I love this age? Yep.
Did I enjoy the extra hour of sleep this morning? Sure did!

Now, a little gardening awaits me on this very beautiful day. And later  . . . a date with my love!
Have a great weekend my lovelies.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Little baby feet

How I love you. Your skin is such lovely softness. Your toes such darling companions. 

Thursday, May 15, 2008

I joy over you


I have no greater joy than to hear my children walk in truth.  3 John 4

My child, My little one, My undershepherd, My dear friend: You are many things to Me, just as I am many things to you. My love for you is deep and tender. I know your desire to please Me, and I am happy that it is so. How can I tell you that though I desire holiness, and while I desire fruit in your life, still My love for you is not contingent upon anything you attain? My glory is involved in the way you live. Eternal destinies are involved in the matters of your holiness and your faithfulness and your obedience to My direction and will; but My love for you is independent of these factors
 I love you because you are My child. I love you because I am your Father. I love you with Calvary love. At a great price I redeemed you -- because I have always loved you. When I planned this, I foresaw you lost in sin; and I loved you, chose you, and set My heart upon you.
Rather than struggling to comprehend the working of My sovereignty, accept this and rejoice in it. Draw near to Me without spoiling the preciousness of our fellowship with shadows of self-condemnation.
You are Mine, and I joy over you. Discipline I reserve for the rebellious. The first step of repentance brings My mercy.

Mercy there was great, and grace was free;
Pardon there was multiplied to me;
There my burdened soul found liberty,
At Calvary.    William R. Newell

Let the peace of God rule in your heart and mind, and be filled with thanksgiving.  
Come Away My Beloved

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Lilac time


Aside from Roses, there is no flower as beautiful and aromatic as Lilacs. Well maybe Hyacinths. Of the three, Lilacs have a stronger scent that carries quite a distance. Unfortunately, Lilacs bloom for only a very brief couple weeks in the spring. 
To prolong their presence in your yard, grow a variety of Lilacs, including, early, mid and late varieties. With variety and luck, you may be able to see Lilacs in bloom in your yard for up to six weeks. Weather will have a lot to do with how long your blooms last. Once the buds begin to open, pray for a cool dry spell. Once the blooms are over, you still have a nice shade bush, but you have to wait for up to fifty more weeks to see them again.


Lilacs do not like to get their feet (the roots) wet for a prolonged period of time. They do best on hillsides, slightly elevated areas, or level ground where there is good drainage. Their roots run deep. If you have an extended dry period or drought, water infrequently but thoroughly. Lilacs do not grow well in lowlands where water tends to collect for prolonged periods of time.

Lilacs will tolerate almost any kind of soil, from clay to sand, with a pH of 6 to 7. Like any plants, your Lilacs will benefit from compost and humus worked into the soil to help retain some water during dry spells, and to provide additional nutrients.

You do not need to provide frequent fertilizer or organic feeding for your lilacs. Use a general purpose fertilizer in early spring or one high in Phosphorous to promote blooming. Too much nitrogen in the soil will result in poor blooms. Repeat the use of a general purpose fertilizer after the flowers have died off.

Tip: Spread your fireplace ash around the drip line of your bush for bigger and better blooms.

There are right and wrong ways to prune a lilac bush. There is also a right and a wrong time. Most importantly, prune or trim back your bush immediately after they are done blooming. Make sure to remove the spent bloom with your clippers. This will keep the plant from growing seeds and encourage creation of next year's buds. Next year's flower bud develops early, even though you may not see it. So waiting too long to prune will cause you to cut off next year's flowers.

Trim larger stems from the center of the bush to increase ventilation. It will also afford more room for newer shoots on the outside of the plant to develop.

Pruning should be done immediately after the flowers have died off. Cut small suckers and shoots at or near ground level, or where it comes out of the main trunk. Leave a few strong and healthy new stalks each year, especially if you are planning to trim back old wood.

Trim back any branch that sticks out from the main bush, and is not appealing to you.

A lilac shoot takes about three years before it produces a flower.




2008 Lilac Festival Sites:

Mackinac Island Lilac Festival - June 6-15, 2008, held on Mackinac Island, Michigan. Josh and I enjoyed this one when we were on the island for our first anniversary. 

Lilac Festival Summary Rochester, N.Y. Info site for their Annual Festival. The festival will be held May 9-18, 2008.

Royal Botanical Gardens Hamilton/Burlington, Ontario, Canada Home of the world's largest collection of varieties of French hybrid lilacs.

City of Lilacs Cornwall, Ontario, Canada

Lombard Lilac Festival in Lombard, Illinois. 200 varieties of Lilacs are on display at their two week festival in mid-May




Tuesday, May 13, 2008

A day to remember . . . always

Happy Anniversary my dear one!

- Jody, I need a good picture of you and Rob. Somewhere around here, I have a picture of you and me getting ready on your wedding day but I cannot find it right now. I love you. Hope your day is special as you remember the day that forever tied your souls together. (As if you needed a specific day for that!)

Monday, May 12, 2008

On the move

It won't be long now. . . Annabelle loves to push anything she can get her hands on. She's a bit timid to take that first step alone though.



Not moving to quickly in Daddy's cowboy boots though.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

A day for mothers

In the United States, Mother's Day was loosely inspired by the British day and was imported by social activist Julia Ward Howe after the American Civil War. However, it was intended as a call to unite women against war. In 1870, she wrote the Mother's Day Proclamation as a call for peace and disarmament. Howe failed in her attempt to get formal recognition of a Mother's Day for Peace.
Her idea was influenced by Ann Jarvis, a young Appalachian homemaker who, starting in 1858, had attempted to improve sanitation through what she called Mothers' Work Days. She organized women throughout the Civil War to work for better sanitary conditions for both sides, and in 1868 she began work to reconcile Union and Confederate neighbors.
When Jarvis died in 1905, her daughter, named Anna Jarvis, started the crusade to found a memorial day for women. In 1907, she passed out 500 white carnations at her mother’s church, St. Andrew’s Methodist Episcopal Church in Grafton, West Virginia—one for each mother in the congregation. The first Mother's Day service was celebrated on 10 May 1908, in the same church, where the elder Ann Jarvis had taught Sunday School. Anna chose Sunday to be Mother's Day because she intended the day to be commemorated and treated as a Holy Day. Even though the day has become severely commercialized, it is a beautiful opportunity to let our mothers know how much, how deeply they are appreciated.

My children bought me a big, beautiful planter for the front porch. They know me so well.  And I have a few more pieces of original art for the gallery. 
My love took us out to lunch, joined by Mom and Dad and my brother's family. Three moms in our little group. My sister sent flowers from Boston to surprise Mom. It was a very sweet afternoon.

I hope you enjoyed your day of celebrating mom.

Happy Mother's Day

My mom and me


My brother and sister
Mom, my best friend

Everything that I am, I owe to you mom.