Thursday, July 31, 2008
Monday, July 28, 2008
Brenda was almost halfway to the top of the tremendous granite cliff. She was standing on a ledge where she was taking a breather during this, her first rock climb. As she rested there, the safety rope snapped against her eye and knocked out her contact lens . 'Great', she thought. 'Here I am on a rock ledge, hundreds of feet from the bottom and hundreds of feet to the top of this cliff, and now my sight is blurry.' She looked and looked, hoping that somehow it had landed on the ledge. But it just wasn't there.
She felt the panic rising in her, so she began praying. She prayed for calm, and she prayed that she may find her contact lens.
When she got to the top, a friend examined her eye and her clothing for the lens, but it was not to be found. Although she was calm now that she was at the top, she was saddened because she could not clearly see across the range of mountains. She thought of the bible verse 'The eyes of the Lord run to and fro throughout the whole earth.'
She thought, 'Lord, You can see all these mountains. You know every stone and leaf, and You know exactly where my contact lens is. Please help me.'
Later, when they had hiked down the trail to the bottom of the cliff they met another party of climbers just starting up the face of the cliff. One of them shouted out, 'Hey, you guys! Anybody lose a contact lens?'
Well, that would be startling enough, but you know why the climber saw it? An ant was moving slowly across a twig on the face of the rock, carrying it!
The story doesn't end there. Brenda's father is a cartoonist.. When she told him the incredible story of the ant, the prayer, and the contact lens, he drew a cartoon of an ant lugging that contact lens with the caption, 'Lord, I don't know why You want me to carry this thing. I can't eat it, and it's awfully heavy. But if this is what You want me to do, I'll carry it for You.'
I think it would do all of us some good to say, 'God, I don't know why You want me to carry this load. I can see no good in it and it's awfully heavy. But, if You want me to carry it, I will.'
I don't know if the ant and lens story is true, but I AM POSITIVE THAT EVERYTHING THAT HAPPENS IN OUR LIVES IS PART OF GOD'S MASTER PLAN....BE IT GOOD OR BAD. I ALSO KNOW THAT IF WE GIVE OUR PROBLEMS TO GOD AND HAVE FAITH ENOUGH TO LEAVE THE PROBLEM ALONE AND LET GOD HANDLE IT, HE WILL. HE IS STILL ON HIS THRONE AND HE STILL HEARS OUR PRAYERS!!!
Wishing you a Meaningful Monday!
Sunday, July 27, 2008
I have posted before with a passing mention of our outhouse. I am sure that most of the baby boomers that are reading this post have had at least a brief encounter with an outhouse at some time in their lives. I know J.D. and I have. I remember one that was in the middle of a cow pasture behind my sister's house when I was about 9 years old. It was in fact thier toilet facilities and if you needed to use it some time in the night you wanted to be sure to take the flash light with you. Nothing is worse than stepping on a still moist cow patty in the middle of the night. (As a child I never wore shoes in the summer unless we were going to town).
This is a picture of our little house out back. It isn't the smelly, fly and bug infested outhouse of days gone by. We do have a problem with wasps though, but sooner or later we will find a solution to that. Ours is a compost out house. For those that are interested in how this works Click Here . This web site pretty much explains it all.
We have had so much fun with this little house. When these Yankee younguns came to visit the first time after we moved in, we told them that if they needed to use the toilet while they were here this is where they needed to go, because we didn't have any indoor facilities. Those three granddaughters were all in agreement, "If that was the case they wouldn't be staying long!" Our Rebel friends and family that have visited are eager to check it out and very surprised to find a framed painting on the wall, a window complete with a sun catcher and a pegboard with dried lavender and eucalyptus hanging from it.
Not to forget mentioning the little chair just inside the door with a vintage fingertip towel, a bowl of pot pourri and a little outhouse painting I picked up at a flea market.
There's been a lot of landmarks
victimized by passing years.
For one, though nearly obsolete,
there's been no rash of tears.
It played its part in history
And was a friend in need
To all mankind, both rich and poor
Who did his daily deed.
For an endangered species
There has been a lack,
To save it for posterity~
That little house out back.
Now some were built with just one seat,
And others three or four
Of different sizes. Some for kids
Were built close to the floor.
It was a place to smoke or think,
Or dream at close of day,
While looking through the catalog
At what was on display.
But icy winds of winter that
Would whistle through a crack,
Discouraged one to loiter
In that little house out back.
They were all alike in some respect,
Yet differed one and all,
Construction didn't matter much
At times when nature'd call.
Though some were fancy,
Some were plain,
Some painted red or white,
All had a well ~ used beaten trail
That led there day or night.
Though some were open to the wind,
Of privacy a lack,
It served its usefull purpose ~ it did
That little house out back
Preserved now in museums,
You will find there on display,
The artifacts of pioneers,
Used in an early day.
From furniture to farming tools,
And rigs for thrashing grain,
And shoes of oxen pulling,
Covered wagons' cross the plain.
And logging gear,
And ancient locomotives on the track.
Yet, how often have we seen preserved,
That little house out back?
- Parking Limit:
two minutes on holidays,
seven minutes in summer,
twelve minutes in winter.
- Men: raise seat if not sitting.
- Smokers and left-handers sit to the left.
- Refill catalog and corncob box when empty.
- Do not comment on other occupants' eating habits.
- Use only one seat at a time (except on New Year's Eve).
- Do not walk on seats.
- Not responsible for any newspapers or books left here.
- Keep your shoes on.
- No drinking or gambling.
- Don't shoot animals in privy.
- Please observe our four-page limit.
- Don't discuss your condition with other occupants.
- No fighting.
- Waiting must be done outside if full.
- Taco, refried beans, sauerkraut, and herring eaters, use neighbors' privy.
- Knock once to determine if occupied.
- Knock twice for emergency.
- And if you hear someone running on the path,
get out quickly.
Friday, July 25, 2008
So many of you lifted little Caden up in prayers when he was life flighted to Dallas for surgery on a blocked intestine. We received pictures of him and his big sister, Miss Audrey yesterday and I wanted to introduce them to all of you. Miss Audrey is our first great grandchild and I think she was born with a smile on her face. She has been and still is probably one of the happiest good natured children in this world. Little Caden is the youngest great grandchild for now. Now that his food is able to do it's job, I think he is going to be a big boy. He has the same big beautiful eyes as his big sister. We haven't been to Texas yet to hold that sweet baby in our arms and to deliver some over due kisses and hugs from Miss Audrey. Hopefully after the first of the year we will be able to make the trip south. Even though J.D. loves our home here and the children and grandchildren here that love him so much, it is still difficult for him to be so far from his children, grands and great grands. I want to thank all of you again for those prayers that went up for Caden. Just a little secret about the pictures, you should be able to click on the mosaic to make the pictures larger.
Britt is performing as part of the pit orchestra at the restored Majestic Theater. This weekend will be the final performances so we will be attending tomorrow night. Hopefully we will be able to get some good pictures to share with you. Wishing all a blessed and safe weekend.
Thursday, July 24, 2008
This is what J.D. has been working on the past few weeks. I think I mentioned a few posts back that the well was previously covered by a sheet of plywood which had started to rot away. I never liked that big piece of wood just laying there. It looked like some project that had been started and never finished.
J.D. did all of this by himself which still amazes me. I am very little help when it comes to building things around here.
I can be useful when it comes to painting and decorating something, but that is about the extent of my usefulness. There was a time when I could have been out there hammering along side of J.D., but Fibromyalgia has taken that ability away from me. My muscles just plain hurts too much to do that any more.
County water doesn't come this far out into the county yet...... Perhaps in a couple more generations. We have a seepage well so when it is dry and not much seepage we haul water and run it into the well. The well water we use for showers and washing dishes. We don't drink this water and I don't use it to cook with. I just don't trust that this water is pure enough to put it in our bodies. We go to the spring to get the water that we use for drinking and cooking.
As you can see, G'pa had a helper during this construction project. J.D. found a good solid wooden door under the screened in porch out back, that will worl perfectly on this new building. It even had a little sign on it that said "Authorized Personnel Only." I told J.D. that with that sign we won't even need to lock it....... The only thing left is to add the trim that will go around the eaves to complete the roof. It had to be ordered. I think the outside wall to the right of the door needs something. FInding just the right touch to add to the wall falls into my territory. Another job well done. Thanks to J.D.'s expertise we now have not only a well house, but more storage space. You can never have too much storage.
Yesterday J.D. was crawling around under the house adding more insulation to the newer part of the house. We don't have carpeting down because we use wood stoves in the winter to heat with and that spells mess. Depending on how cold it gets, the floors almost feels like walking on ice at times. Hopefully by adding more insulation and shutting off a crawl space access the floors should be warmer this winter. I am thinking that our next project will be to build the deck from the pergola.
For now, we are going to make a run to town and treat Riley to lunch and play time at the park. Wishing you all a blessed Thursday!
Monday, July 21, 2008
So the man decided to help the butterfly. He took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The butterfly then emerged easily. But it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings.
The man continued to watch the butterfly because he expected that, at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which would contract in time. Neither happened! In fact, the butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never was able to fly.
What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand was that the restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the butterfly to get through the tiny opening were God´s way of forcing fluid from the body of the butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved its freedom from the cocoon.
Sometimes struggles are exactly what we need in our life. If God allowed us to go through our life without any obstacles, it would cripple us. We would not be as strong as we could have been. And we could never fly.
So have a nice day ~ and struggle a little.
Friday, July 18, 2008
It wouldn't be your birthday Chris, without this message from your Grandma........ "33 years ago today, I stepped off of an airplane in L.A., California and your Dad was there to meet me with the news that I had a brand new grandson." She told you that same story from the time you were old enough to understand. She loved you with all of her heart. She loved all of her grandchildren, but you and your sister had a very special place in her heart because she was able to spend more time with you as you grew up.
As I look at you today, a husband, father, brother, son, uncle, boss, teacher and friend, It warms my heart. You wear so many hats in the course of a day and they all fit you well. You have fought hard and never backed away from what you believe in and what you believe to be the right thing to do. You have worked and studied long hours for a long time to reach your standing at work. Melody was a God send for you. She helped to get your life back on course when life was being so unkind to you and she helped you plant your feet firmly against an ex-wife that would see you destroyed. You have stood by your family, as well as your friends when things were rocky and served as an anchor in a raging storm for all of us. I have to admit that as you were growing up I worried about your future. No matter what you encountered, you just lowered your head and charged into it full speed without even weighing your options or considering what lay ahead of you. No matter how many times I tried to save you from hurt by telling you (many times from my own experiences) what could happen if you followed through on the path you were on, your choice was always to do it any way. You were always one of those children that didn't learn from being told.... you needed to learn from experiencing.
You also had a heart as big as the outdoors. When I cried, my little Chris would comfort me with a hug and a Kleenex. When in grade school they talked of people starving to death in Ethiopia, every penny that you had saved from Christmas and your birthday you took to school to donate to help these people. You always befriended the kids at school that were picked on or shunned by other kids. When the neighbor's house burned down, you gave J.O. one of your baseball caps because everything he had was now gone. I remember how he treasured that cap. As you have grown, so has your heart............ You are still the first one there to lend a helping hand to those in need. Even when there is no real need, you are there to do what you can because it is the good thing to do. As your walk through life you spread little seeds of kindness along your path. Melody and your children are right there spreading those seeds along with you. I am so proud of the man that you have become! Happy Birthday to my baby boy!
for honoring me with this wonderful award. Between my doctor's appointment and being entertained by Riley this week I have gotten a little behind on postings. You both have humbled me and at the same time brought a huge smile to my face and heart. Now it is my turn to share this wonderful award with some very deserving people.
Britt @ 'Britt-Arnhild's House In The Woods' Britt is a multi talented woman that takes her readers on tour of so many beautiful European locations with photos and narrative. She opens her home to all and shares the many customs and traditions of her home land with us. Her post are a delight to read.
Shelley @ 'Artsy Etc.' Have you ever seen a camera talk? Well, then you need to drop in and visit Shelley. Her artistic abilities go beyond charcoal and a sketch pad. She brings so many wonderful pieces of art that she creates with her camera to Cyber City via her postings to share with us. I have been inspired and up lifted many times by Shelley's postings.
Rosie @ 'Smokey Mountain Breakdown' Rosie lives in the Smoky Mountains with her critters. She is a published writer and shares her talents with us through her wonderful stories on her blog. My roots run deep in Appalachia and I have a deep appreciation for Rosie and her Chronicles of the people and happenings around her.
Peggy @ 'Hidden Haven Homestead' Peggy shares her life with us as she goes about maintaining what is by no means an easy life. She shares the antics of her kids which adds up to a life that is anything but boring. Stop by for a visit and see if you don't feel right at home.
Diane @ 'Diane's Place' Diane posts a weekly Sunday dinner menu that I gain weight from just by reading. She shares pictures and stories about her family and the light of her life, little Miss Emmy (her grand daughter). Emmy is about the same age as our Seth and it is adorable. Visiting Diane's blog is like going to visit family. You feel at home as soon as you walk through the door and want to kick your shoes off and stay for supper.
Kentucky Woman @ 'Little Drops....Into The Pool Of Life' This woman deserves a standing ovation for the tireless way that stays on top of what is going on with our service men and women. She does this as well as spends quality time with her grandchildren, mother and siblings..... not to forget that four letter word..WORK. I appreciate all the effort that she puts into her postings to keep us up to date with news from the front.
Judy @ 'Memories Are Made Of This' I love Judy's postings. She shares pictures and stories from her life from her childhood to the present. If you are a Baby Boomer you will find it to be like a walk down memory lane. So many times I have read her postings and just some little thing she says will spark a good memory of something from my own past that I have long since forgotten. She has brought many warm memories and good feeling to my mind and heart.
That just about takes care of today's post. It is going to be a scorcher today and there is not the first bit of a breeze on the mountain ridge. I am going to close this post and fix something good for lunch that will go along with a hot day. Have a blessed day.
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
Linds at 'Rocking Chair Reflections' has so kindly blessed me with this award. This means so very much to me Linds and I thank you with all of my heart. Please drop by and visit Linds, her postings are a wonderful read and more times then not I leave her blog with post-it notes stuck all over my brain reminding me to give more thought to one thing or another or I really need to do a post on something else. Linds, if exercising the brain is a way of putting off Alsheimers, then your blog is sure to be a cure for the dreaded disease.
Now if I understand the procedure correctly, I am to pass this award on to three other people. This is one difficult task to do. I think all of the blogs on my side bar are 'Just plain fun to read' or I wouldn't have them listed. Here goes though:
Connie at 'Over Good Ground' ~Connie shares her life in California with her husband (The Prospector) and their critters.
Theresa at 'My Fairbanks Life' ~Theresa is another one of those 'thought provokers' much like Linds. She is a knitter of socks as well.
Prixie at 'Five' ~Prixie just recently moved to London from South Africa. I had been reading on her original blog 'Choco Mumbo Jumbo' and enjoyed her postings, but 'Five' is a wonderful take on the observations she makes of the people and world around her as she travels through her daily life in London.
Great stuff all of them. Congratulations girls..... You all have captured my loyalty and friendship.This is just a sampling of one of the many things J.D. has been doing for the past few weeks. He found a saw mill not far from the house that cuts cross ties and gives him the scrap slabs that they cut from the lumber for nothing.
He can get the ends of the cross ties that they cut away from the cross ties for a ridiculously cheap price. I am thinking they charged him $15 for a trailer load.
We were on our way home through Amish country the other day and I snapped this picture as an example of Amish farm equipment being refueled. This photo just doesn't do justice to these beautiful horses. They are Clydesdales and the muscular make up of these beautiful creatures is astounding.
I hope your Wednesday was filled with love and happiness.
Tuesday, July 15, 2008
You've heard about people who have been abducted and had their kidneys removed by black-market organ thieves. My thighs were stolen from me during the night a few years ago. I went to sleep and woke up with someone else's thighs. It was just that quick. The replacements had the texture of cooked oatmeal. Whose thighs were these and what happened to mine? I spent the entire summer looking for my thighs. Finally, hurt and angry, I resigned myself to living out my life in jeans.
And then the thieves struck again.My butt was next. I knew it was the same gang, because they took pains to match my new rear-end to the thighs they had stuck me with earlier. But my new butt was attached at least three inches lower than my original! I realized I'd have to give up my jeans in favor of long skirts.
Two years ago I realized my arms had been switched. One morning I was fixing my hair and was horrified to see the flesh of my upper arm swing to and fro with the motion of the hairbrush. This was really getting scary - my body was being replaced one section at a time. What could they do to me next?
When my poor neck suddenly disappeared and was replaced with a turkey neck, I decided to tell my story. Women of the world, wake up and smell the coffee! Those 'plastic' surgeons are using REAL replacement body parts -stolen from you and me!
The next time someone you know has something 'lifted', look again - was it lifted from you?
THIS IS NOT A HOAX. This is happening to women everywhere every night. WARN YOUR FRIENDS!
P.S. Last year I thought some one had stolen my Boobs. I was lying in bed and they were gone! But when I jumped out of bed, I was relieved to see that they had just been hiding in my armpits as I slept. Now I keep them hidden in my waistband.
I hope this posting brought a smile to your face. If for even a minute the weight of your burdens was lifted from your shoulders.... Then you have given me reason to smile. Blessings to each and every one of you.
Monday, July 14, 2008
I hired a plumber to help me restore an old farmhouse, and after he had just finished a rough first day on the job: a flat tire made him lose an hour of work, his electric drill quit and his ancient one ton truck refused to start.
While I drove him home, he sat in stony silence. On arriving, he invited me in to meet his family. As we walked toward the front door, he paused briefly at a small tree, touching the tips of the branches with both hands. When opening the door he underwent an amazing transformation.. His face was wreathed in smiles and he hugged his two small children and gave his wife a kiss.
Afterward he walked me to the car. We passed the tree and my curiosity got the better of me. I asked him about what I had seen him do earlier.
'Oh, that's my trouble tree,' he replied 'I know I can't help having troubles on the job, but one thing's for sure, those troubles don't belong in the house with my wife and the children.. So I just hang them up on the tree every night when I come home and ask God to take care of them. Then in the morning I pick them up again.'
'Funny thing is,' he smiled,' when I come out in the morning to pick 'em up, there aren't nearly as many as I remember hanging up the night before'
Life may not be the party we hoped for, but while we are here we might as well dance.
I am thinking that we all need a Tree!
Sunday, July 13, 2008
These are a couple of the beauties would come to the yard almost daily for a couple of years. They were curious about what we were doing. They still come to the yard from time to time, but not as often as they once did since they started logging all over the mountain side.
Saturday, July 12, 2008
This picture shows what is now the living room. J.D. took the two kitchen windows out and we left that open to the living room. The screen and porch doors came off to the porch and a solid wall went up there with a door that opens to the porch from the living room.
From this point on it surprised me how fast things moved along. Of course part of the reason for that was most likely the fact that once J.D. starts something, he stays on it like a man possessed.
In 2003 J.D. retired and we moved to Ohio from Louisiana. Our original plan was to travel and live in a camper for a few years and see the country. So a couple of years before he retired we decided to buy a camper, park it at a camper park and live in it to make sure we could deal with living in such close quarters ( figuring we would have the camper paid off by retirement time, that way too). We did fine living in the close quarters.
I don't even remember now why we decided to buy property and settle down in the first place instead of traveling. The fact that this house was quite small didn't bother us. After living in a camper for a couple of years the original size of this house felt huge to us.
Things started feeling tight when the grand girls would come to spend the weekend. We had one bedroom at the time and a very very small living room. The girls took turns with where they slept. All except for Britt of course. She laid claim on sleeping in the recliner. With that settled Alley Oop and T~Bear took turns sleeping on the couch and sleeping on a pallet on the floor. When we packed 6 adults and 4 children into the house it added up to needing some addition work to the house.
This is a side view shot of the house from the parking area. Since this picture was taken I have painted the pergola brown so it wouldn't blend in with the house. The small building off to the right of the pergola is what we call the bunk house. From what I understand the previous owners built it to be a wood shed and before it was completed they decided to make it an office/sleep over spare room instead. Since we moved in it has been a storage area, but we are slowly sorting through and thinning out what we had stored there. Hopefully someday it will once more be an office area.
An up and coming project will be to add a side deck from the pergola to the back of the house. With this idea in mind that is why J.D. added a single french door leading outside from the master bedroom.
In this picture you see the finished (Did I say finished???) product of J.D.'s labor. I helped with the staining, the painting and holding things in place while he attached them but the fact remains, he hammered every nail that went into this addition. The man amazes me.
Don't wander off too far because I'll be sharing some more photos with you in the next few posts. Until then have a great weekend.